Authors: Patti B. Ogden, illustrated by Mary Manning
Page Count: 32
Publisher: Capstone Productions
Publication Date: 2008
Rating: 2 of 5 stars
As the father of four young girls, I have to pay attention to kid’s books. As a Christian, I look for good Christian literature that is age-appropriate for my children to read. As a blogger and self-proclaimed book reviewer, I am blessed with the opportunity to review good kid’s books on my blog, for free. My thanks go out to Capstone Productions for providing me a review copy of Keoni’s Big Question by Patti B. Ogden, and illustrated by Mary Manning.
This book is big and colorful, and very attractive. With an old fisherman, a boat, fish and animals, a young boy, family, church and home pictures, it is sure to grab the attention of many a young inquiring mind. The story contained in the book is good as well.
A young boy wants to know if anyone can see God. He is frequently let down when various adults evade his question. Along the way he has an adventure with his friend the old fisherman. The fisherman finally answers his question and Keoni begins to understand what it is to know God.
Such a story provides ample opportunities for Christian parents to ask (and answer) questions of their children about spiritual matters. Children will certainly identify with the boy and his quest to get a “straight answer” from adults. They too have wondered why we can’t see God physically.
I would guess this book to be appropriate for children from ages 3 through 12, and it really is produced well. The only drawback of the book comes on the last page. There we discover that this book and others were “inspired and written using stories excerpts and actual sentences from the sermons of William Branham”. Who we are later told “received revelation and visions from the Lord Jesus Christ of what actually happened down throughout Bible history.” Branham’s personal stories are told, they believe, “to inspire spiritual growth so that we would personally know the character and loveliness of our savior”.
I can agree with that last line. That purpose and aim is worthy. But setting Mr. Branham up on a pedestal as if he is uniquely inspired by God is troubling to me. I don’t know much about Branham or his teachings, but such undue admiration for and devotion to one man should be cause for strong caution and concern. Because of this unqualified promotion of a man, and implied belief in extrabiblical revelation of “what actually happened” in Biblical history, I cannot unreservedly give my recommendation to this book. It gets only 2 out of 5 stars from me.
All in all, its a great book for kids. The theology and message of the book is not at all troubling. I was quite surprised when I read the above sentiments on the last page. Parents can discerningly take advantage of this book, but they would need to be careful not to blindly follow the teachings of Brother Branham however, and use the book with caution.
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