Did you know that in Jewish culture at the time of Jesus there were six ways in which a person could be “born again”? According to my Complete Jewish Study Bible these included: when a boy becomes bar mitzvah at age thirteen, when a Jewish man married, when he was ordained as a rabbi, when he became the head of a rabbinical school, or when a Gentile converted to Judaism or was crowned as King.
So in the Gospel of John, when Nicodemus asks Jesus, “How can a grown man be born again?” He, who had already fulfilled four of these methods, wasn’t asking whether it was possible to be born again. He was asking whether there was some additional way. “Yes,” Jesus answers. “unless a person is born again from above, he cannot see the Kingdom of God” (the full text is found John 3:1-8).
In other words, this gift of entering into God’s kingdom is made possible by God alone and is available to all. To be “born again” is a phrase that can be just as confusing to children as to adults. It’s also the subject of my brand new children’s picture book, The Best Birthday, colorfully illustrated by the talented Drew Krevi.
Molly, the six-year-old main character, is invited to her cousin Sammy’s birthday at Lantern Hill Farm. Only, Molly wishes the party was for her. Then she could have two birthdays! She even tries to keep Sammy’s present and to blow out his candles. Then Aunt Jenny tells Molly that she really can have two birthdays–by choosing to be part of God’s family.
“God loves you so much,” Aunt Jenny tells Molly and her friends, “he sent Jesus to give you this new life. When you receive his love, it is like being born all over again. That is a gift God wants to give to each one of us.”
If you know a child who would be blessed by knowing how much God loves them, would you be willing to buy the book or to share about it on social media? You can even feel good doing it, knowing that 10-percent of all royalties benefit children in need through Compassion International.
You can order The Best Birthday picture book–as a board book or full-sized picture book–through your local bookstore or by clicking here: for Amazon or Christianbook. You can also leave a comment here or share this post on social media for a chance to win a copy of this book! I’ll will draw one winner at 5 p.m. ET on Friday, May 29th and mail a signed copy anywhere in the continental US.
Thank you so much for your support!