Insight from a Children's Pastor & Awana Commander

Why I Won’t Give Children a Bible


When a child receives a Bible, it is a special time. bible-501969_1280There are some churches who give a child a Bible at certain times in their lives. When they move up to a certain grade, when they get baptized, etc. In the last several years, I have had the privilege of providing copies of the Action Bible to many children connected to my ministry, and sometimes friends of people who have received the Bibles.

Several years ago, I made a conscious decision not to give children a Bible. What I do is to talk with the parent/guardian about the child’s desire/need for a Bible. If I have the Bible that the child is seeking, then I will give the Bible to the parent to give to the child. I have even let parents borrow copies of children’s Bibles that I have so they can review it on their own to see if it meets their child’s need and what they would like for their child. In cases where the parents can afford it, they may pay for it, or buy it themselves. In some cases where the parent can use assistance, I provide it to them for free or whatever they may want to give.

As many in children’s ministry seek to find ways to encourage the parents to embrace the role as the primary spiritual influence, what better way than to give the parent a Bible, or guide them to a Bible, that will engage their children.

I want to encourage the parents to emphasize the importance of reading the Bible to their children and that is why I won’t give a child a Bible.


The Author


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  1. Interesting thoughts. At our church, I’ve found most of the children who don’t have a Bible and whose parents won’t supply them with one, are not necessarily always because they can’t afford one, but unfortunately because the parents simply don’t care. We also have a lot of children who come to our church without their parents. What do you do in these cases?

    1. Great questions GJ. As with anything, there are always exceptions because we do not live in a perfect world.

      In cases where the parent doesn’t desire to give their child a Bible, I do my best to talk to the parents and if they choose not to, I seek permission to give them one.

      For the children who attend without their parents, and I have not made a connection with the parents, I talk to the adult who is bringing them to either seek the parent’s approval, or allow that adult who would be having a spiritual impact on their lives outside of the church (more involvement) give them the Bible.

      The goal is to work with the parent as much as possible.

      If those in children’s ministry seek to partner with parents, then we must find practical ways to do so, while also realizing that not all parents will accept that role – and some parents do not know Jesus – in those instances, someone must stand in the gap to disciple the child.

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