The Best Children's Bible (After Buying All of Them)

I wanted to know without a doubt what the best Children’s Bible was. So I went online and found all the popular Children’s Bibles and purchased them…all of them.

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My Kid's Bible Top Picks:

1. NKJV Study Bible

Tons of unique study features |  Lots of help applying the Bible to everyday life  |  Includes all the basics: Concordance, Maps, etc...

2. Airship Genesis Study Bible

Clever kid-friendly theme   |  Animated characters guide you throughout  |  Correlating audio adventure series |  Includes all the basics: Concordance, Maps, etc...

3. Hands-On Bible

Lots of interactive object lessons   |  One activity for every week of the year  |  Fun  kid-friendly approach and design |  Includes all the basics: Concordance, Maps, etc...

I wanted to know without a doubt what the best Children’s Bible was. So I went online and found all the popular Children’s Bibles and purchased them…all of them.

Okay…there are actually hundreds of kids Bibles on the market…but I went to scoured the web to find the most popular Kid’s Bibles and bought them!

Why would you do this Nathan, are you bored?

No, way! My reasoning goes like this: It’s one thing to look at at Bible online. You can go on Amazon and “look inside” the Bible, you can get a sense of what’s in it and how a child might enjoy it, but until you actually hold it in your hands and “use it” you don’t really know what it’s like.

I know enough about you to realize you don’t have time, and are not interested in spending weeks buying Bibles and evaluating each one meticulously. That’s why I’ve compiled this list of all the Best Children’s Bibles. Scroll through the list below and come to your own conclusions about what is best for your child or the kids in your ministry.

At the end of this post I offer some conclusions on Bibles you might choose. However, my goal here is not to endorse any particular children’s Bible. My goal with the following information is to help you find the Bible that is best suited for the children you have in mind.

4 Considerations for Selecting a Kid's Bibles

Airship Genesis Kids Study Bible

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Version: NKJV  |  Publisher: Tommy Nelson  |  Available Cover Styles: TechTile, Hardback

This Bible has a exploration / space theme. Just a few pages into the Bible you are introduced to the “Genesis Exploration Squad”. These are a group of 5 kids (plus a monkey) that guide you as you “travel through the Word of God”.

“The Genesis Exploration Squad” is comprised of five incredible young adventurers who travel through time aboard the futuristic Airship Genesis. Led by a special Bible that opens Pathways into the past, the members of the squad step into history and explore the stories of the Bible. Along the way, these globe-trotting adventurers discover legendary artifacts that help them learn and remember the lessons of God’s Word.

Layout: Full color throught, stronger pages than your typical Bible page, lots of articles and sidebars  |  Size: Typical Bible size  |  Website: AirshipGenesis.com

A Look Inside...

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Airship Genesis Kids Study Bible Features:

Mission Overviews

Unique introductions to every book of the Bible.

100 Rupert Reports

Informational notes about people places, and things.

75 Power Force

Featured Bible truths and Christian essentials.

66 LOGOS Discovery

Helpful articles on a variety of subjects.

51 Bible Heroes

In-depth character studies

100 Bible Blasts

13 Full Color Maps

You know...like...maps!

Concordance

Alphabetical list of biblical words and were to find them.

Inspire kids to follow Jesus!

Kids hear about Social Media "followers" all the time. But let's encourage them to follow Jesus more than any other. Laugh, play, and inspire your kids to be a "disciple" of Jesus with this free lesson series.

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Followers

The Complete Illustrated Children's Bible

Small-Illustrated Bible

Version: Story summaries (not the biblical text)  |  Publisher: Harvest Kids  |  Available Cover Styles: Paperback, Hardcover

(taken from the Bible's introductory pages)

This wonderful Bible is written in straightforward and engaging language and is filled with beautiful and imaginative illustrations. Very young children will love looking at the colorful pictures while the book is read aloud, and older children will enjoy reading the stories for themselves. With nearly 300 full-page color illustrations helping to tell the stories from the Old and New Testaments, this Bible is sure to win every child's heart.

Layout: Full color comic style readings  |  Size: Largest Bible of the group

A Look Inside...

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The Action Bible

Small-Action Bible

Version: Story summaries are in comic form  |  Publisher: David C Cook  |  Available Cover Styles: Hardcover, Kindle, Audiobook, Audio CD

(taken from the Bible's introductory pages)

People don't usually think of God like this, but God is the original action hero. Everyone is so impressed when Superman bows a car over with his breath, yet God created the whole universe with His breath. Superman may save the day with his strength, but Jesus saved the whole world with His death.

And then there are the humans God chose to fulfill His divine plan—they were pretty awesome (though imperfect) action heroes themselves. Read about Samson wading into an army of Philisitines, killing them all with nothing more than a donkey's jawbone. Discover how Esther risked the wrath of a tempermental king to save God's people. Every few years there's another action movie about Robin Hood or King Arthur–but Hollywood always forgets about King David, a shepherd boy who lived as an outlaw before he became king. He was a part of history long before both of those legends.

But here's the thing: The Action Bible is more than just the exciting stories of the past. Here and now, today, it inspires us to be God's next generation of difference-makers. The heroes of the Bible were flawed and chosen; you and I are flawed and chosen. The action you read about in these 750 pages is nothing compared to the action will occur one you put this book down.

How will you answer God's call to action?

Layout: Full color throughout with tons of illustrations  |  Size: More of a square shape, wider than most Bibles |  Correlating Website: TheActionBible.com

A Look Inside...

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NKJV Study Bible for Kids

Small-NKJV-Bible

Version: NKJV  |  Publisher: Tommy Nelson  |  Available Cover Styles: Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle

(taken from the Bible's introductory pages)

The NKJV Study Bible for Kids is the premier study Bible for kids in the trustworthy New King James Version. This Bible has been created and designed especially for you! Now studying the Bible can be easy and fun. There are many themed articles placed within the Bible text to help make it easier for you to read, understand, and learn about God's Word. By studying this Bible you can experience the big picture of the incredible Bible story, God's love for you, and how to use it in your daily life.

Layout: Full color throughout, lots of sidebars and articles  |  Size: Typical Bible size

A Look Inside...

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NKJV Study Bible for Kids Features:

Behind the Scenes

Introductions to each book of the Bible

Timelines

Understand when events happened on a historical timeline.

On Location: Maps

What it sounds like...there are maps!

Spotlight

How Bible stories connect to our lives

Starring Roles

Personality profiles of featured Bible characters and how God used them to accomplish His perfect purposes.

In Focus

Definition and pronunciation of key words

Action!

Connecting spiritual principles with daily life through the experiences of Bible characters.

Epic Ideas

Articles explore important Christian themes like sin, salvation, forgiveness, God's promises, and much more.

Dictionary & Concordance

Helps kids navigate the meaning & occurrences of biblical terms

Articles Index

Easily locate articles within the Bible text.

Discoverer's Bible

Small-Discoverer Bible

Version: NIV  |  Publisher: Zondervan  |  Available Cover Styles: Paperback, Hardcover, Kindle, Audiobook, Audio CD

(taken from the Bible's introductory pages)

The NIV Discoverer's Bible offers the full text of the New International Version of the Bible in an easy-to-read, large-print type. It's the perfect chance for you to embark on your own Bible exploration. Included are 30 full-color pages of illustrations, Bible scenes, and important themes, including the 10 Commandments for Kids, the Lord's Prayer, the Love Passage for Kids, and the ABC's of Becoming a Christian.

Layout: Black and white Biblical text with a couple sets of full color pictures intermixed  |  Size: Typical Bible size

A Look Inside...

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Discoverer's Bible for Kids Features:

30 Full-Color Pages

Experience key Bible stories and themes

Book Introductions

Short intros for each book of the Bible

Maps

8 color maps of key locations

Hands-On Bible

Small-Hands On

Version: NLT  |  Publisher: Tyndale / Group |  Available Cover Styles: Hardcover, Paperback

(taken from the Bible's introductory pages)

The Hands-On Bible is loaded with activities that parents and kids can do together. Experiencing the Bible in engaging ways makes Scripture relevant and memorable. It features the clear New Living Translation to help children understand God's Word. Plus MyHandsonBible.com gives parents free bonus activities, devotions, music, and more.

Layout: Dark blue and black text throughout with a couple 4-page full color sections intermixed  |  Size: Typical Bible size

A Look Inside...

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Hands-On Bible Features:

Hands-On Experiences

Invites kids to interact with God's Word through experiments, crafts, and more.

52 Key Verse Activities

Help kids learn, understand, and live important Bible truths.

Bible Hero Bios

Biographies that talk straight to kids, making characters come alive.

Bible Bonanza Experiences

Introduce kids to the biggest Bible stories

Bible Book Intros

Every book of the Bible is introduced with humor and hilarious graphics.

Fun Facts

Help kids see the Bible as true and amazing

FAQ's

A section that answers commonly asked Bible questions.

Dictionary & Concordance

An easy way for kids to understand and locate words in the text.

Big Dreams, Big Prayers Bible For Kids

Small-BigDreams

Version: NIV  |  Publisher: Zonderkidz  |  Available Cover Styles: Hardcover, Kindle

(taken from the Bible's introductory pages)

The Big Dreams, Big Prayers Bible for Kids includes the complete NIV translation of the Bible along with devotions, prayers, and highlighted verses to help kids pray and listen for God’s answers to their prayers.

Layout: Dark blue and black text throughout with a couple 4-page full color sections intermixed  |  Size: Typical Bible size

A Look Inside...

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Big Dreams, Big Prayers Bible for Kids Features:

Devotions

Featuring people who prayed and listened to God.

"Hand" Prayer Model

A model to help kids pray for others and themselves.

Highlighted Verses

Selected for memorization

Book Introductions

A helpful intro to each of the 66 books of the Bible.

PrayerJournaling Pages

A place to record prayer requests and answers to prayer.

Reading Plans

Helpful plans to get kids reading God's Word.

Topical Index

Easy-to-use index for finding Scripture for life's issues.

NIV Children's Holy Bible

Small-NIV Holy Bible

Version: NIV  |  Publisher: Zonderkidz  |  Available Cover Styles: Paperback

(taken from the Bible's introductory pages)

The NIV Children’s Holy Bible is perfect for introducing children to the Word of God. With beautiful full-color illustrations and the complete text of the New International Version, this Bible will help children discover the Scriptures as the unfolding story of God’s love for his people. Perfect for ministry and outreach use.

Nathan's Note: It's very obvious to me, this Bible was created to be economical to use as a free giveaway. This is a very "basic" Bible.

Layout: Black and white, no special features  |  Size: Typical Bible size

A Look Inside...

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Following Jesus Bible

Small-FollowingJesus

Version: ESV  |  Publisher: Crossway  |  Available Cover Styles: Paperback, Hardcover

(taken from the Bible's introductory pages)

The ESV Following Jesus Bible is full of outstanding content designed to help children understand and enjoy the Bible. Designed for children ages 8–12 as they transition from a beginner’s Bible, nearly every other page features a box answering the who, what, where, when, or why of a particular text. “Seeing Jesus” sections explain how certain Bible passages point to Christ and “Following Jesus” sections connect the Bible with the hearts and lives of young readers.

Layout: Full color throughout, lots of articles, features, and sidebars  |  Size: Typical Bible size

A Look Inside...

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The Following Jesus Bible for Kids Features:

W Questions

Discover the who, what, when, where, and why of God's Word.

Following Jesus

Understand what certain passages means for me

Seeing Jesus

Sections help kids understand how a text points to Jesus

Section & Book Introductions

Bible is divided into 6 sections with an intro page for each. Plus an intro for every book.

The Good and the...Not So Good

I was first of all surprised that a few of the Bibles I purchased were not really Bibles at all. While they contained Bible stories, the stories were summaries and the actual words of Scripture weren't included.

Exclusions...

So in specifically looking for the best children's BIBLE....I had to exclude The Action Bible and the Complete Illustrated Children's Bible because they aren't actual Bibles (the full biblcal text isn't included).

Not Quite "Study" Bibles:

Next, I felt a few of the Bibles fell short of being really great study resources.

The NIV Children's Holy Bible doesn't have the word "Study" in it's title for good reason. It is just the text of Scripture printed in relatively small type on black and white pages.

The Big Dreams, Big Prayers Bible for Kids fell short for me as as well too. While I appreciate the concept of a Bible that leads kids toward prayer, the Bible didn't feel built from the ground up to be all about prayer. Most of the features are limited to a few colored insert pages and some blank lines in the back for a prayer journal. In my opinion, some of the other Bibles had much stronger study content and that information was more deeply woven into the pages of Scripture.

The Discoverer's Bible seems to be aimed at a little younger of an audience. I was specifically looking for a Bible that elementary kids might like so this particular Bible didn't really fit that bill. From page one it felt very 'young' to me.

My Analysis: The Best Kid's Bible

So for me, the Bibles left really come down to personal taste and preference.

Specifically, what theme are your children interested in.

Each of the remaining Bibles have lots of great features and I don’t think there’s much value in trying to distinguish slight variations between them. All the remaining Bibles have a nice selection of helps for kids as they read.

Kids Bible for Space and Time Travel Kids:

So…if your kids like a Space/Time Travel feel then they would probably love the Airship Genesis Bible. The 5 explorers who make up the Airship Genesis Exploration Squad guide kids through the Bible and help them discover more about what it says and what it means.

I also really loved the extra audio episodes on the Airship Genesis website. They remind me of the Adventures in Odyssey episodes i used to listen to as a kid. Obviously the setting is very different as the kids aren’t ever at Whit’s End … but the stories and the concept is great.

One other feature of this Bible I really liked was that it was full color throughout. I noticed on some of the other Bibles that there were special inserts that had full color, but the Bible pages themselves and the extra features on them were in black and white, or black and blue, etc..

A Bible not being full color thought isn’t the end of the world, but I do think it takes away a bit of the “wow factor” when a kid is looking through a Bible. A kid’s world these days is always in full color so it makes sense to me that their Bible shouldn’t be any different. I want a kid’s Bible to be just as exciting looking as anything they see on a phone or on TV. A full-color presentation helps make that possible.

Alright…enough on color, let’s move on!

Kids Bible for Hollywood / Movie Kids:

The NIV Study Bible for Kids is themed around a movie / Hollywood production theme. You’ll notice the features are titled to reflect this: “Spotlight”, “Starring Roles”, “Action!”, etc….

I didn’t go through and count the number of features in each of the Bibles, but just thumbing through it there does seem to be a lot of different features. My impression is that there are more special features in this Bible than some of the others.

One downside for me is the lack of supporting visuals. The color in the Bible is great, but there aren’t characters or other illustrations to ‘break up’ the text. The only ‘cartoons’ or ‘illustrations’ in the Bible are the icons for each of the features. When you compare this to some of the other ones there’s a lack of interesting characters or animals or whatever to keep the pages from becoming all text.

This is perhaps a minor detail…but something I definitely noticed.

Kids Bible for "Hands On" Kids:

The Hands On Bible was a bit of a surprise to me. I thought the cover design was cool when I first bought it, but I didn’t expect the interiors to be as interesting as they are.

I guess I’m a bit of a pessimist that way.

When you get inside The Hands On Bible you’ll find a lot of object lessons, basically. As the title suggests there are lots of opportunities for the kids to learn in a hands-on way about the ideas and lessons from Scripture.

Some of the activities are things like making a friendship bracelet (in the book of Ruth) while others are more ‘science experiment-y” like turning something bad into something good using dryer lint (in the book of Daniel).

I love this kind of stuff. Kids are active…give them fun active stuff to do to reinforce the ideas in Scripture.

One knock on this Bible for me, would be the lack of color. With the exception of a few inserts, the pages are black text with dark blue headings. My printing this way (it’s called 2-color) the printer saves a lot of money in production, but when you compare the interiors of this Bible to some of the others, the lack of color stands out.

Are full color pages a game-breaker for me?

Nope.

Kids Bible for Outdoor/Adventure Kids:

The NIV Adventure Bible has got to be the most popular kids Bible that churches are using these days. I see this thing all the time.

So it works for a LOT of people.

I know from experience that it being in the NIV gives it a great head start. I’ve seen many a Sunday School leader use a less kid-friendly Bible if it means using a preferred translation.

Based on my comments above about the other Bibles I do have to say I like the full color interior pages. Although I wouldn’t call the pages ‘brilliant’ in color (many of the pages almost look printed in just 2 colors) they do splash colored features throughout the text.

If you like the Adventure / Outdoors theme I could see how this Bible would be super attractive for you. It’s got a lot of fun animals running through it, and at the end of the day…what kid doesn’t love adventure!

If I had a critique of the Bible I would say it’s light on additional information in its extra features. A lot of the features in the Bible tended to be on the shorter side as compared to some of the other Bibles I looked at.

Best Kids Bible for Readability:

The Following Jesus Bible gives a nice clean presentation of the text. I’d say just on the basis of ‘readability’ this Bible is the best of the group. I don’t think it has the strongest feature set…but I do love the layout of the text itself.

The Following Jesus Bible strikes me as a ‘conservative’ approach to a kid’s Bible. If you aren’t really into the ‘fun’ style of kids Bibles this one stands in contrast to those rather nicely. I wasn’t blown away by any of the features, but it certainly hold’s it own among the lot.

At the End of the Day:

The best Bible for your kids (or your Sunday School class) is a personal decision. You know the kid WAAAYYYY better than I ever will. So I will present my opinion of some of the best options - but whatever you choose - deciding to buy an exciting study Bible for a child is ALWAYS a great idea.

My Kid's Bible Top Picks:

1. NKJV Study Bible

Tons of unique study features |  Lots of help applying the Bible to everyday life  |  Includes all the basics: Concordance, Maps, etc...

2. Airship Genesis Study Bible

Clever kid-friendly theme   |  Animated characters guide you throughout  |  Correlating audio adventure series |  Includes all the basics: Concordance, Maps, etc...

3. Hands-On Bible

Lots of interactive object lessons   |  One activity for every week of the year  |  Fun  kid-friendly approach and design |  Includes all the basics: Concordance, Maps, etc...

The BetterBibleTeachers Curriculum Library

An ever-growing collection of elementary teaching resources...(250+ weeks of lessons and counting!)

Full Curriculum Access

Every member has immediate access to ALL of the resources.

Games Galore

Inside every lesson you'll find several games. Kids don't just learn by 'sitting and soaking'.

Songs with motions

Every lesson includes links to songs with lyrics AND motions!

Print and Teach Ready

Using the materials is as easy as... Step 1: Print.  Step 2: Teach!

Object Lessons

You'll find object lessons galore throughout all of my material. (I love them!!)

Words for the Week

Each lesson includes a lesson recap kids can take home to help remember what they've learned.

Complete Lesson Script

Every lesson includes a complete script to follow along with or inspire you.

Stand-Alone Lessons

Every member has access to a bunch of stand-alone lessons for those weeks when you don't want to start a new series.

Fun Activities

Since kids learn through play, each lesson includes easy to play games for both large and small groups.

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About Me and the Family

I'm Nathan, that's my wife Kristie, and my son Nolan. We are a family of 3 living in San Diego, California. (Ignore the Seattle background...that was taken on vacation!)

I've been a volunteer Sunday School Teacher since 2005. After teaching from a variety of curriculums I decided to create material I thought might keep even the regulars on the edge of their seat. And...it worked 🙂

So now, I continue to create ridiculously interesting elementary curriculum for anyone who feels the same pain.

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