Tag: adam and eve

What’s in the Bible? (Videos) | JellyTelly

Vischer

The weather isn’t cool, but it will be soon. And when it is, we plan to watch this series for the third (or possibly fourth?) time. This post originally appeared on this blog in October 2014, and we still love this show as much as we did then.

We have discovered some new favorites on JellyTelly since I first shared this post (The Nature of God, Stevie’s Trek to the Holy Land, Friends & Heroes—to name a few), but What’s in the Bible? remains one of our family’s All-Time Favorite Shows. I hope you love it, too!


Way back in this blog’s beginning posts, I wrote a bit about What’s in the Bible? I told you that it was awesome and that you should watch it, but that was over a year ago and now it’s a cozy sort of season when movies and fleece blankets are in high demand, so I thought I’d give the series its very own post—even though it’s not a book, but a show about the book.

What’s in the Bible? is a series of 26 episodes that works its way through the entire Bible, but probably not in the way you’re thinking. Yes, it tells the creation story and shares a stellar retelling of the Book of Ruth, but the overall focus of the series is less on the celebrated stories of the Bible and more on the great, overarching story of the Bible. What is actually in the Bible? Why does it matter to us? What’s in the Bible? strives to answer those questions with creativity and sincerity (a great combination when dealing with anyone, little or big). The mind behind it all belongs to Phil Vischer, of JellyTelly (and formerly of VeggieTales). He briefly explains the vision of What’s in the Bible? here:

As you may remember from my post about his book, Sidney and Norman, I think very, very highly of Mr. Vischer. He appears on the show as a sort of anchor for an eclectic cast of puppets (which features, among other things, a Sunday school teacher, a news anchor, and a pirate), where he doesn’t shy away from difficult topics, but speaks to kids as though they can and should understand what the Bible says about tricky topics like sin, salvation, and theological doctrine. Take the show’s explanation of the Trinity, for example:

 

Our daughters love these videos. My husband and I love them, too, and through the show’s vivid illustrations we have both learned a lot about key aspects of the Bible. The episodes that touched on Paul’s back story or the silence between the Testaments switched lights on for both of us, and now our daughters tend to do things like, oh, list the books of the Bible in order just for fun. The show is full of catchy songs (a song about the Pentateuch—sung on a riverboat!) and great topical segments (A Pirate’s Guide to Church History!) that go far beyond the traditional fare of Christian children’s programming.

Take this song about the book of Judges (yes, Judges):

Oh, okay, and our favorite song about Leviticus (yes, Leviticus):

 Now, where you can you find this excellent series? If you live in our area, you can request copies of the DVDs at the public library, but by far the easiest way to watch them is to subscribe to JellyTelly. The monthly fee is cheap and grants you access to all 26 episodes of What’s in the Bible? as well as a variety of other shows and games that our family has yet to explore. (Do I sound like an infomerical? Don’t worry, this is not a sponsored post—none of my posts are—so it’s simply my enthusiasm for this show that you hear taking on a cheesy radio-announcer persona.)

JellyTelly’s mission is “be a tool to help raise the next generation of Christians so they know what they believe and know how to live it and to help launch the next generation of Christian storytellers.” I love that vision and see it succeeding marvelously through What’s in the Bible? 


What’s in the Bible? (DVD series)
Jelly Telly

Some Sort of Change

Maybe I felt that between starting home school, planning art lessons for my daughter’s co-op, cleaning up after a mobile baby, and editing essays, I just didn’t have enough to do during nap-time. Maybe I breathed in the fall air a little too deeply and felt that I, like the leaves, trees and sky, needed to make some sort of change.

The Time Quartet | Little Book, Big Story

But whatever it was that inspired the change, I made it, and I’m glad I did: on Saturday, I enlisted the help of my husband and we sat on the couch, side by side, with cups of cold green tea between us, and we reworked this site completely, giving a lot of thought to what might make it easier for you to read through my existing posts and rummage through the archives when you’re looking for a specific title.

Not only that, but I’ve spent the last week photographing books for these posts so I can do away with the tiny thumbnails once and for all.  (I did this on the front porch, where the light is best and the background clean, but hovering over a stack of books with a camera is a bit awkward when the neighbors walk by.)

The most exciting change (I think) is this: if you take a minute to enter your email address—which I promise not to share—you can now subscribe to this blog via email:


Did you do it? Hooray! You shall henceforth find my newest posts waiting for you in your inbox.

There will be hiccups while I update photos and re-format posts and such, so please bear with me. If it’s any consolation, there are other changes in the queue that I think you’ll like, but I don’t want to give anything away quite yet. I am taking requests, though: is there anything that you would like to see,  anything that might make it easier for you to navigate Little Book, Big Story?

Adam and Eve | Warwick Hutton

When illustrating the story of Adam and Eve, one must confront that Obvious Question: just what kind of fruit did Eve eat?

No, no. Forgive me. I jest.

What I meant to say was, “Adam and Eve were naked. How does one handle that gracefully in a children’s book?”

Or, in other words, what did it look like to be naked and unashamed? (Before the Fall, I mean. We’re confronted fairly regularly with what folks think that looks like now, and I must say, that is no subject for a children’s book.)

The fact is, one can only use so many strategically placed leaves and limbs before the images begin to feel contrived, and yet one cannot have Adam and Eve simply stride around in their birthday suits. Right?

Adam and Eve | Little Book, Big Story

I picked up a copy of Warwick Hutton’s book at our local library, thumbed through it briefly and took it home. It wasn’t until I sat down to read it to my four-year-old that I realized that Hutton disagreed on that point: in his telling, Adam and Eve can and do stride around in the buff. And I think he made the right call.

As I reread Adam and Eve, I began to realize that while his depictions of Adam and Eve are, well, anatomically correct, there is a certain delicacy to his style that ensures that there is nothing vulgar about them. Instead, his images display an honesty that I didn’t realize had been missing from the other versions I’d read of Creation and the Fall. All those branches and oddly positioned animals may have been obscuring an important aspect of the story.

Adam and Eve were naked, yes, but they were also unashamed. Hutton’s depictions communicate that in such a way that I can’t help but realize that, if anyone is uncomfortable with this, it is me—not Adam and Eve (at least, not at first), and certainly not my daughter, who loved that book from the minute we sat down to it.

Now, full nudity is not all that Adam and Eve has to offer. Warwick’s images of Creation are striking—some of the best I’ve come across—and his imagined Garden of Eden is a place that I would very much like to explore. Through clean lines and watercolors, the way he places light in each picture is not only striking, but expressive. (Watch Adam and Eve move from the central places of light to the outskirts, in the shadows, and you’ll see what I mean.)

Adam and Eve | Little Book, Big Story

There is one more point that I must put out there: Hutton depicts God as more than a mere beam of light or misty cloud. He does it with that same delicacy, as no more than a cleanly outlined figure, but some folks may not appreciate that. I, for one, found it delightful to see Adam and God walking through the garden as companions, and devastating to see Adam and Eve standing, chastened, before him after the Fall.

So, would I recommend this book to every family? No. You know your children; you know where your line of comfort is drawn. But I would encourage you to give it a chance. Read it a few times, and see if you, like me, find yourself struck down with a longing for all that we lost in the Fall.


Adam and Eve
Warwick Hutton (1987)