Do you have devotionals you can combine with Bible reading for your family?
We do–in both family worship time and in homeschool. We love to begin our homeschool days with prayer and Bible reading, whether it’s simply a Bible passage or chapter, or a devotional that closes with Bible reading. FlyBy Promotions and Crossway Books provided a copy of their new ESV Family Devotional Bible for us to use and review. And even better, we have a copy for someone to win (see below!).
This Bible is especially fashioned for parents and children to read and use together. The ESV translation enables children to understand, read on their own, or even read this Bible aloud. It is a hardback Bible, sized perfectly to hold in smaller hands. The laminated hard cover is comfortable to hold, and is decorated with thumbnail-sized paintings of scenes from Bible events.
In the ESV Family Devotional Bible, you’ll find everything you’d normally expect to find in a Bible; all 66 books which normally make up the Old and New Testaments of the Protestant Bible. There are two tables of contents at the beginning which list first, the books (and their page numbers) in the order you’ll find them. The second one lists the books of the Bible in alphabetical order, along with their page numbers. There are 8 gorgeous maps of Bible places at the end of this Bible from different eras, which also list some main events of each era: The Lands of the Patriarchs; The Exodus from Egypt; The Lands Assigned to the Tribes of Israel; The Kingdom of Saul, David, and Solomon; The Divided Kingdom of Israel and Judah; The City of Jerusalem, The Land of Israel during the New Testament; and Places Paul Visited. These are truly excellent resources; they have great design and are so simple to read that children will easily understand them. Important locations are marked clearly, with notes about events connected to various places.
The neatest extra additions to the ESV Family Devotional Bible are the family devotional pages scattered throughout it. There are 130 devotions in all, which cover key Bible events from creation to the revelation given to the apostle John (and, there is a complete listing of the devotions along with their page numbers at the end of the Bible). Each devotion contains a vivid painting of the event described and a listing of the Bible verses covered in it. Then, there are several paragraphs written about those verses, along with questions for the family and a key verse that’s connected with the devotion. Here are some that you’ll find in this list!
- God Calls Abram
- Joseph’s Troubles
- God Heals Naaman of Leprosy
- Josiah and the Priest Who Found God’s Word
- An Angel Visits Joseph
- Jesus Blesses the Little Children
- Peter Escapes from Prison
- and more!
My son, who’s in the eighth grade, and I used this for our morning Bible times as we began our homeschool day. First, I’d read the devotion aloud and share the picture with him. Then, we’d read the key verse. We actually started in the middle of the Bible, with the story of Hannah, and moved on from there. (Hannah’s and Samuel’s story is a very special one to our family!)
I have to say that we just loved using ESV Family Devotional Bible, and we will continue to! The paintings for each devotion are both beautiful and highly descriptive, of what each Bible event could have looked like. That helped us think more about each event. The devotions themselves are beautifully written; perfect for family enjoyment and for reading aloud. We also loved the way that each devotion we read in the Old Testament included a short paragraph at the end that pointed to Jesus. What great connections! The key verses gave us something else to think and ponder on, and were very well-chosen for each devotion. In short, it was perfect for our mornings in our homeschool day. But it would also be a fantastic addition to family devotional times at bedtime, or during weekly family worship. It would also be a great Bible for children to use on their own!
I also really enjoyed that many of the devotions aren’t the ones we’re very familiar with. I love that! There is so much treasure in the Bible, but it’s easy to focus on some of the more well-known events and stories for devotional writers, it seems. Here, you’ll also see Philip and the Ethiopian, Why We Never Need to Worry, Jesus Heals Ten Lepers, Lydia Trusts in Jesus, Elijah and the Woman Who Trusted God’s Word, and many others we might not usually see in a children’s devotional. Awesome!
You can visit the social media links for Crossway Books below, for more information. And now, I have one copy of the ESV Family Devotional Bible to give away to one blessed reader!
***If you have won a giveaway sponsored by FlyBy Promotions/Propeller in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to enter this giveaway.***
Otherwise, enter using the Giveaway Tools form below!
“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
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