That’s why I was thrilled to hear that J. Warner Wallace had adapted his excellent book Cold Case Christianity into a version just for kids! Like the original, the kids’ version focuses on using detective skills to figure out the truth about Jesus. Set against the background story of a student detective training academy are lessons about being aware of our assumptions, the reliability of the gospels, and the truth of the resurrection accounts. More than just telling kids what to think about Jesus, this book teaches kids how to think well, which is of infinite value in our culture where deep and accurate thinking is sadly too often left at the curb.
Over the course of a couple of days, I read through the first few chapters with my six-year-old son. While some of the concepts were a little above his comprehension, he was engrossed in the story and the pictures. The supplemental materials available on www.coldcasechristianityforkids.com, which include activities like mazes and fill-in-the-blanks, were especially a hit. The recommended age of 8-12 is accurate, and I am looking forward to pulling this out again in a few years when my son’s analytical skills are a little more sophisticated.
No book is perfect, and neither is this one. The second-person narrative can feel clumsy at times. Likewise, handing this to your child and expecting the job to be done would be futile. This is a book that will work best when read together, parent and child, curled up on the couch. Those parents that go the extra mile and use the online adult guide will find tons of questions to help spark amazing conversations about Jesus and the truth.
Cold Case Christianity for Kids not only points kids towards the truth, but also helps shore up their critical thinking skills in a culture that is increasingly critical of faith. As a parent, having resources like this around encourages me to put in the effort of teaching apologetics to my children. It will be worth every minute if it means that my kids aren’t sent out into the world blind.
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