R.C. Sproul, one of the great Protestant theologians of our time, has done something that very much needed doing, and he has done it very well: written a story that will help very young children to understand, and trust, the Bible.
The Knight’s Map (Reformation Trust Publishing, 2015: available from amazon.com), complete with beautiful artwork by Richard Lawnes, is a short story written to be read aloud to little children, with some questions and answers in the back to help parents explain certain aspects of the story. It tells of a knight, Sir Charles, who receives a letter from the Great King–God–inviting him to come and meet the King. Accompanying the letter is a map–the Bible–which will show Sir Charles how to get there. But Sir Charles can’t understand and use the map until he learns that it is actually the truth: then it leads him unerringly to his goal.
The story is based on Our Lord’s parable of the Pearl of Great Price–and this pearl is Jesus Christ.
I am grateful to my mother and father, and other family members, too, for providing me, throughout my childhood, with books that I could read about the Bible. I read them many times and remember them to this day; and thanks to this foundation, the sophomoric foolishness I learned from college and the culture was only able to throw me off the right track for thirty years or so. As I grew older, the books they gave me were more sophisticated. These, along with the Bible itself, gave me a foundation of faith for which I will always give thanks.
The earliest book were picture books, and I recall them vividly–especially the picture of Joseph’s brothers plotting against him. The picture brought to life the wickedness of their action.
The Knight’s Map is rich with full-page color illustrations. Children who have learned to read will enjoy reading this book on their own, after their parents have read it to them. I am in awe of how simply R.C. Sproul is able to present the basic tenets of the Christian faith: it’s very hard to make it look so easy!
Kids are smarter than we give them credit for, at least until public school, college, and a debauched popular culture turn their brains to mush. I’m always surprised (and delighted!) when people tell me how much their very young children have enjoyed my Bell Mountain books–which I wrote for tweens and teens. But then adults enjoy them, too.
What could be more important than giving our children a firm foundation in Jesus Christ, and in God’s Word?
Thank you, R.C. Sproul!