Recently we started reading Sally Lloyd-Jones’ The Jesus Storybook Bible and I was quite pleasantly surprised by this book. Like The Big Picture Story Bible I recently reviewed, Lloyd-Jones’ book uses a thematic approach in telling stories from the Old Testament to the New Testament. The flow of each story or character in the Bible is skillfully tied together. This storybook indeed lives up to its subtitle: “Every story whispers his name.” Jones underlying goal is to convey that the Bible is about Jesus and His redemptive work for the human race, and this is exactly what this storybook accomplishes.
The only complaint I have with this book is the writing style, which is a bit too vernacular for my personal taste, especially when it comes to writing about the Bible. One example is the fight between Goliath and the Israelites where Goliath taunted God’s people with the following:
“Chickens!” Goliath bellowed. “Your God can’t save you! I’ll rip your heads off and have you on toast!” (p. 123)
Another example is of King David:
Did you know that David was a songwriter, too? In fact his songs were so good, they might have been in the top 40 charts (if they’d been invented then). (p. 130)
There is nothing wrong with the content, but it is just a bit too contemporary for my taste. I just can’t imagine a Philistine like Goliath calling the Israelites “chickens.” I’m sure Goliath called them something in the similar fashion, but the language used seems to belong in the 20th century American playground rather in the historical event in the Biblical time period. I understand that this is a children’s storybook which explains the writing style. However, my five-year-old son doesn’t quite understand the cultural reference, and these references are likely to mean little to those not immersed in American culture.
Besides the above personal preference difference, I really enjoy this book and would recommend it.