Today’s Book is from Christian Focus for Kids, who provided a copy for the sake of the review.
The current trend in Christian publishing is finding Jesus in every portion of Scripture. Some books handle this almost like Where’s Waldo, as if there’s hidden meaning that we have to discover to point to Christ. Others ditch the actual context to make a story that’s about someone else really about Jesus.
Fortunately, I find Deepak Reju’s Great Kings of the Bible to navigate those rocks fairly well. He faithfully retells important moments from the lives of Saul, David, and Solomon. He lets these stories speak for themselves, then goes on to point out how Jesus is greater.
For example, in dealing with David’s sin with Bathsheba, Reju explains how God’s promise was that a King would come who would never sin. This is a good example of pointing to Jesus as supreme over David, without making David a fable to fall forward from.
A word is also due about the illustrations here. All three kids (12, 10, 7) liked the illustrations because they were reminiscent of the illustrations in some of our older Bible story books. The style is more old-school like this—you can tell from the cover picture. That’s not bad, but it’s not the high-color glossy that many children’s story books are these days. So it stands out. Also, Saul, David, and Solomon are not near as white in the book as they are on the cover.
Overall, the message repeated throughout Reju’s work is that even great kings are just like us: sinners in need of the greatest King, Jesus. It’s a good message. Put a copy of this one in your children’s reach, both at home and at church.