Word-saturated conversations between parents and children are God’s means for learning to fear, love, and obey God.
God told His people that His words were to be on their hearts so they could “teach them diligently” to their children, “talk[ing] of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise” (Deuteronomy 6:1-7).
How can parents know the Bible and talk about it with their children? It’s not as easy as it once was before all the distractions and demands of our age. But it’s still stimple: spend time together in the Word. Fighter Verses can help.
The short weekly passages are ideal for reading during mealtime. Parents can talk about the verse(s), ask questions to lead children to discover the meaning, and ask children to take turns bringing questions about the passage to the table. Drive time makes for captive audiences when we leave our devices unplugged. Use time in the car to practice saying the passage together or listening to the Fighter Verses songs to help you remember the words. Bedtime prayers are ideal for praying the promises of the Scriptures over children.
Making Bible reading and verse memorization part of your family’s routine is key to doing it faithfully.
To make the most of the time you set aside:
A short instructional time that catches and holds a child’s interest is better than a long drawn-out time that leaves the child bored and frustrated.
Keep instruction from being burdensome by teaching a word-, phrase-, or verse-at-a-time, according to your child’s age and attention. The Bible is so rich that a single verse, or even phrase, can be plumbed for fruitful instruction.
Don’t worry about being exhaustive. Instead, ask the Holy Spirit to guide you in teaching the points God puts on your heart. Better to spend several days on a small segment than try to cover everything in one sitting.
It’s fun to be creative with visuals and extras. But more isn’t always better. Complex preparations often lead to days with little or no instruction because your schedule is packed. If you keep your Bible time simple, you’ll be more likely to keep going consistently. Five to 15 minutes each day for a long time is far better than a one-time Pinterest-worthy production.
Simple lessons require only that you mull over the meaning of the verse, asking God how it applies in your child’s and your life, and praying that God will make the verse alive in your hearts.
Look up any words your child(ren) don’t know, explain definitions in words they will understand.
Refer back to what your child already knows to help him understand a new concept. For example, when teaching Psalm 103:10, “he does not deal with us according to our sins,” you might ask if he can think of a time in the Bible when God forgave someone who deserved punishment (e.g., Jonah’s flight to Tarshish, David with Bathsheba, the Israelites’ idolatry, etc.). Talk about how God was merciful, overlooking sin, possibly pointing to Micah 7:18 and Romans 3:25.
Use common experiences to help your child understand a biblical concept or the point of a passage. For example, the word covenant in Jeremiah 32:40 might be unfamiliar. Agreement is probably more familiar. You could use the example of agreeing on an allowance—the parents have an agreement with the child that they will give him a certain amount of money each month—to teach the concept of covenant.
Asking questions is the easiest way to encourage your child to interact with the text. For example, Psalm 34:9 says, “Oh, fear the LORD, you his saints, for those who fear him have no lack!” You could ask:
The aim of Bible instruction is not merely increasing knowledge, but also building faith. Help your child to see that God’s Word relates to his own life by asking questions. Consider Psalm 56:3-4, “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You. In God, whose word I praise, In God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can a mere man do to me?” You might read the passage, then ask:
Ask the Holy Spirit to provide circumstances where your child can act on a newly discovered truth. And ask Him to bring that truth to your child’s mind. Then encourage your child in his walk of faith.
A devotional for families, small groups, and individuals
Binder containing five sets of Fighter Verses (52 passages each in ESV)
76 Bible verses for toddlers and pre-readers