Jan 7, 2012

The Gospel Story Bible by Marty Machowski

Sometimes it’s easy to forget Jesus in the midst of frantic schedules, family squabbles and conflicting priorities. For many Christians, God often becomes little more than an afterthought after days absorbed and depleted by the busyness of life. But the truth is that he is the hero of every story—including the mundane, ordinary ones we experience on a regular basis. That is why Marty Machowski beckons families to take time out from the daily grind to be transformed by the message of the Good News in his latest release, The Gospel Story Bible: Discovering Jesus in the Old and New Testaments (New Growth Press, November 2011).

Based on the ESV Bible, this uniquely illustrated Bible storybook uses 156 stories to present God’s plan of salvation in Christ from its opening narrative in Genesis to its finale in Revelation. This easy-to-read storybook written for children from preschool to high school introduces readers to many captivating people, places and events from the Bible’s Old and New Testaments. At the same time, Machowski skillfully connects the individual stories to the overall gospel narrative of how God redeemed a broken world through sending his son Jesus to save his people. Each story ends by connecting to Jesus and his gospel of grace. By sharing these Bible stories with each other, young and old will learn together the life-changing habit of recognizing the presence and workings of Christ in every moment of their day.

“The gospel is deep enough to keep the oldest and wisest parents learning and growing all their lives, yet simple enough to change the heart of the first grader who has just begun to read,” says Machowski. “That’s what makes The Gospel Story Bible ideal as a storybook for a preschooler, a devotional for a grade school student, a refresher for the adult believer or an introduction for the new one. Parents and children will learn together to read the whole Bible as one story, with one hero—Jesus Christ.”

Vibrant illustrations by A. E. Macha, child-friendly discussion questions and Scripture references accompany each story to help lead families in exploring the Bible. Parents and teachers will be delighted to discover how easily even a young child can understand the original text of a story that he or she has already come to love. A companion to the family devotional Long Story Short: Ten-Minute Devotions to Draw Your Family to God and the soon-to-be-released Gospel Story Sunday school curriculum (February 2012), The Gospel Story Bible is also a great resource for churches, Sunday school classes, home-schoolers and Christian schools who want to teach their children to apply the gospel to every situation and make Jesus the most important part of their everyday lives.

Marty Machowski is a Family Life Pastor at Covenant Fellowship Church, a Sovereign Grace Ministries church in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania, where he has served on the pastoral staff for twenty-three years. Marty leads Promise Kingdom, the children’s ministry of Covenant Fellowship. He is also the author of Long Story Short: Ten-Minute Devotions to Draw Your Family to God and the forthcoming Gospel Story Sunday school curriculum. He and his wife Lois and their six children reside in West Chester, Pennsylvania.

The following video is actually for another book written by Marty Machowski titled Long Story Short. I recognized some of the same artwork from The Gospel Story Bible.

As a grandparent, I love discovering books that my grandkids will love. When I find something that appeals to many different age groups, I get really excited. I am certain that this book will be enjoyed by the entire family.

The vibrant colors and drawings will capture the interest of even the youngest listeners, and each story is covered in a two page spread. Each story ends with two or three questions to encourage further discussion.

Covering the most loved and well known stories of both the Old and New Testaments, The Gospel Story Bible is a fantastic way to make family devotions a vital part of your together time.

I was very interested in the Crucifixion story, and here is a quote from the story titled "The Crucifixion & The Criminals", page 230:

Two robbers hung on crosses with Jesus. One believed while the other mocked. The Bible tells us that God's arm is not too short to save anyone (Isaiah 59:1). Even the thief in this story, who led a sinful life all the way to the end, was saved from his sin on his very last day. We all have the same choice to make as these two robbers. We can reject Jesus, like the thief who made fun of him; or we can put our faith in him, like the one who asked Jesus to remember him. If we put our faith in Jesus, no sin is too great to be forgiven. Like the robber who repented, we all start out as God's enemies in our sin. But Jesus' death on the cross brings us back into a good relationship with God (Romans 5:10-11).

I highly recommend this book and can't wait to share my copy with my own grandchildren at the earliest opportunity.

Disclosure: Book received through The B&B Media Group in exchange for my honest review.

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