By Sharon Mager, BaptistLIFE Correspondent
WALDORF, Md.—Ebonie Davis, Youth Minister, Trinity Baptist Church, Waldorf served as a commentator for Youth for Christ’s “Three-Story Bible,” published by Tyndale House Publishers, based on Youth for Christ’s discipleship program which teaches students that there are three stories—their story, God’s story, and their friends’ stories, and how those stories are entwined.
The new Bible, with commentary, is designed to answer the questions many youth grapple with. “Sometimes we don’t encourage kids to ask enough questions and then they graduate and have all of these unanswered doubts about their faith,” Davis said.
The Bible has 500 “Connection Point Questions,” to inspire teens to read Scripture more closely and to think about the application to their own lives. There are also “Then and now” features that weave together the stories of young people today with Scriptures. The “Life Choices Index” leads teens to scriptures that help them see what the Bible has to say about issues they face every day. Some of the topics include abortion, alcohol, drugs, depression, and suicide.
Davis was one of about a dozen people who worked on the project, led by Dave Rahn, vice president and chief ministry officer of Youth for Christ. Rahn was the program director while she was pursuing her Master’s Degree at Huntington University, Indiana. Davis went on to teach Christology as an adjunct professor. It was during that time, that Rahn asked Davis to contribute to the team as a commentary writer and “voice editor,” ensuring consistency in tone and theological faithfulness.
Davis said everyone who worked on the Bible is either a seasoned youth worker, a professor, or is serving in a Para-church organization or in a church.
The experience opened Davis’ eyes to the Scripture in new ways. “It was an awesome privilege and responsibility to know that what we were writing was going to be in the hands of a lot of teenagers. I certainly didn’t take that lightly. Each time, I went into it very prayerfully and in awe of what He was going to do. I asked Him to help me correctly handle the Word of truth,” she said.
Davis worked as a youth minister at Trinity Baptist Church for almost nine years. Her students were always on her mind. As she wrote the commentaries and answered questions she thought they would ask. “One thing I tell them (her youth group) is that they’re in there, in the things that I wrote,” she said.
“I had immersed myself in the Word in a different way—with different eyes. I would think, ‘what questions would my own youth have about this passage? What would Amber think? How would Lillian receive this answer? What would Jose have to say about this passage?’”
Her students were also the first ones to see the new Bibles outside of her family, though she told them not to buy them. She’s giving them copies for Christmas.
In addition to her ministry at Trinity Baptist Church, Davis has written articles for Youth Specialties and Youth Worker Journal. She also does youth ministry consulting and research.
The Three-Story Bible was released in October.