POLL: Is the Bible too graphic for children?

An article in The Christian Century claims that the Bible with its, “murders, rapes, genocides, betrayals, mauling by wild animals, curses, divine retribution and apocalyptic horrors” is not fit for small children.

Do you agree? 

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Liv Larson Andrews

An excellent question and one I debate with myself each year when it comes time for the Easter Vigil. We strive on that night to enliven our telling of biblical stories. We often tell many stories that night, too. Sometimes, we read the Binding of Isaac. It is a truly horrible thing – the near murder of a child by a parent. Yet, there it is.
A friend shared with me how she and her sister disagree over this story, and others like it. Her sister was firm: never read this to children. My friend took another stance. Read it, then say: “what a strange and scary story.”
Probably a mix of both approaches is best, since violence threads its way through so many of our sacred texts. I want to give the faith to my child, with all its promises about deliverance from fear and death. And I also want him to be kept from terror. In the end, we do our best, making mistakes along the way, and God holds us and our children close.

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