Easter is a great time to eat candy and look for eggs, but you want your kids to know about the real meaning of Easter. These Easter picture books are all about Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. They are the absolute best books to teach your kids about sin, redemption, and GRACE. Don’t miss the grace in all of these picture books for kids about the Gospel.
The first half of the list are picture books that are solely about Easter. The second half of the list contains Christian picture books that are about the Gospel as a whole, but that are perfect for reading during Lent and Easter.
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Easter Picture Books about Jesus
The King of Easter: Jesus Searches for All God’s Children by Todd R. Hains
New in 2023! The premise of this new book is that Jesus finds people, and those who he finds, he saves. Jesus finds 14 different people/groups of people in the book’s text, almost all from New Testament Bible stories. The text is brief, significantly less than another book in this series, The Apostle’s Creed: For All God’s Children. What I like about it is that it clearly demonstrates all of the sinners Jesus came for. The illustrations show Jesus gathering them all for a banquet at his table.
Jesus does have a halo in the pictures. It doesn’t bother me because it’s just on Jesus, but fyi. Here’s a little more information about how to handle halos in picture book illustrations.
I See Jesus by Nancy Guthrie
New in 2023 Easter season, as it came out in fall of 2022. The premise of this tightly crafted picture book is that within the Old Testament stories are glimpses of the Messiah. The illustrations further that message by portraying certain objects’ or people’s shadows in the shape of Jesus. It’s a fabulous concept.
It’s filled with the most lovely prose, pointing our kids to the hope of who Jesus is. There isn’t much text, and I think it’s meant for younger kids. However, because the concept is fairly lofty, you could definitely use it with a wider age range. It’s also fairly long, so don’t dismay if your toddlers won’t sit through the whole thing in one sitting.
I liked this book so much that I awarded it the Golden Paw Print for Best Christian Holiday Picture Book of 2022. Find more information about it and the other winners here.
The Garden, the Curtain, and the Cross by Carl Laferton
This Easter picture book connects the whole Bible to Christ’s resurrection. Although the text itself is simple, the concepts are fairly lofty. Be prepared to answer questions about what everything means. Although there is a board book edition of this book, I recommend it for slightly older kids, not toddlers. It is excellent, HIGHLY RECOMMEND.
Bunny Finds Easter by Laura Sassi
New in 2022! This darling brand new Easter board book combines all the necessary Easter book components: darling characters, a few traditions, and JESUS! Bunny is a little girl bunny who enjoys Easter traditions like hot cross buns and painting eggs, then ends up at church learning about the resurrection. It is a board book with rhyming text, so definitely trends young. I highly recommend it for the toddler through preschool set.
(Plus it has this mother hen with 5 chicks and the text says, “Babies, babies, everywhere!” and let me just say that I feel that!)
Jesus Rose for Me by Jared Kennedy
Jesus Died for Me is all about the resurrection. It focuses on what Jesus did FOR us. Although this is a board book, it is meant for ages three through seven, and I think you can push that even older. It would be especially helpful for kids who might be new to attending church, or come from a background that didn’t talk about the Gospel at home.
(You’ll find another excellent book in this series, Jesus Came for Me, on this list of the best Christian Christmas picture books about Jesus.)
The Easter Fix by Steph Williams
Although this is a paperback, and not a board book, it is fairly simplistic. It focuses on the theme of Jesus’ death and resurrection allowing us to be friends with God again. Although you can definitely use it with all ages, I do think it trends young, with the sweet spot being ages 2 through 5.
The Day the Earth Shook by Helen Buckly
This very short paperback book talks about the power of Jesus’ love for us at Easter, and the powerful way the earth responded. There is a rhyming refrain throughout, “I guess we shouldn’t be surprised, God’s Son died.” It is written at a reading level for toddlers or preschoolers, but the subject matter is slightly more mature, so this could be used for multiple ages.
Holy Week by Danielle Hitchen
Holy Week is part of the Baby Believer series. It is a simple board book, looking at different emotions that Jesus and his followers went through during Holy Week. Heads up that it does not shy away from the anger and sorrow. For that reason, don’t be afraid to read it to older kids, too, even though it is a board book.
Also, some books in the Baby Believer series do put halos on the apostles. It is not super noticeable because of the illustration style, but do be aware that it is there if that is not something that your particular flavor of Christianity does regularly.
The First Easter Day by Jill Roman Lord
The First Easter Day is another excellent Easter board book. This one looks at Easter from lots of different perspectives. It is very gentle, with not much about the pain and sorrow of Jesus’ death. It is perfect for a baby or toddler’s Easter basket!
That Grand Easter Day by Jill Roman Lord
This Easter picture book uses cumulative verse to talk about Jesus’ resurrection. That means it repeats phrases over and over again, like the classic We’re Going on a Bear Hunt. Because of that, the sweet spot for this book is younger than some of the other picture books on the list. I recommend up to age 7 or 8 as those who will admit that they enjoy it.
The Tale of Three Trees by Angela Elwell Hunt
Normally people put The Tale of Three Trees as a Christmas book, because one of the trees becomes the manger. I disagree, however. I think that the way the last tree becomes the cross, pointing to heaven and bearing such a heavy burden, makes this an incredible Easter story. It’s a moving story, and appropriate for all ages. Because of the longer text, you can definitely read this to older children during Lent.
Bare Tree and Little Wind by Mitali Perkins
Speaking of lyrical Easter stories where trees are the main characters, new in 2022 is this stunning Holy Week picture book, Bare Tree and Little Wind. Similar to The Tale of Three Trees, the story is not an exact retelling of the Biblical Easter story. Instead, it focuses on the natural world during the time of Christ’s death and resurrection. This story goes beyond that, through the destruction of Jerusalem, and looking forward to the spread of Christianity over the whole world.
The only thing I don’t like in this book is that instead of using the name, “Jesus,” the story calls him “Quiet Man.” I mean…Jesus was a lot of things. He was certainly gentle, merciful to sinners, gracious to the outcast, but quiet? Not so much. He was a mover and a shaker. When I read this aloud to my kids I personally say something else. (My go-to is “Loving King,” but you do you.)
Other than that, I think it’s a beautiful Easter picture book. The illustrations are STUNNING. I recommend it for all ages, with the caveat that you will have to explain parts of the story to young kids so that they understand what’s happening. Probably not a lot of preschoolers will be like, “Ahh, yes, the destruction of the temple by the Romans killed that palm tree, I understand perfectly.”
What is Easter? by Michelle Medlock Adams
This darling, spring colored Easter board book perfectly covers BOTH things that we love about Easter – the family and fun, and that Jesus has beaten sin and death! It is rhyming text, and talks about going to church, but brings all of the Easter egg hunts back to the real reason why we teach our kids the Gospel.
I especially like the pictures of Jesus in Jerusalem. Highly recommend for all ages, baby and up!
God is Hope by Amy Parker
God is Hope is definitely the least heavy of all of the Easter picture books on this list. It is a happy, spring time rhyme about God bringing hope into the world during Easter. The pictures are lovely and soft. It is the perfect bed-time board book to wind down during Lent.
Picture Books About the Gospel that You Should Read at Easter
The Priest With Dirty Clothes by R. C. Sproul
This Christian picture book is an allegory about being clean enough to stand before a king. I find Sproul’s stories to be at times a bit heavy handed. (I know, I know, please don’t take away my Protestant card.) However, this one gently explains the incredibly important concept of justification to early elementary children, and should be on your shelf.
This is the Gospel by Kids Read Truth
On each page of this book about the Gospel there is a simple explanation and then actual scripture passage. For that reason, it is excellent for all ages. The sweet spot is ages 5 through 9, but I really do think that it is for everyone. This Gospel teaching picture book is perfect for Easter because it reminds us of the bigger story of WHY Jesus came to earth.
The Ology by Marty Machowski
A theology heavy hitter, The Ology will take you some time to get through, coming in at 224 pages. However, don’t be daunted! It is a rich story, aimed at six through 11 year olds, but applicable to every family member. I like that the text doesn’t assume that your child listening to it is already a believer in God. It sort of meets them where they are.
If you’re looking for an engaging way to explain systemic theology, this is it. It does depend heavily on analogy, so some things you might need to explain if your family believes slightly differently than the author.
The Gospel by Devon Provencher
Another deceptively simple Christian board book. However, making the Gospel simple enough for children to understand doesn’t mean watering it down. This excellent board book gets into why Easter had to happen. It’s perfect to read either to kick off Lent on Ash Wednesday, or to wrap the season up on Easter Sunday.
We Believe by Danielle Hitchen
We Believe goes through the whole alphabet, sharing exactly what we believe from the Creeds to baptism. Why, yes, I do want my board books with a healthy dose of teaching from church history, thanks for asking! Heads up that Hitchen does come from a slightly different background, and the book is slightly more Catholic. (Apostles have halos, for example.) While I love this book, I do recommend a preview at a bookstore before you purchase it if that doesn’t line up with what you want in your home.
The Biggest Story by Kevin DeYoung
Another long book, this one comes in at 132 pages. It is meant for nine through twelve year olds, but can be used for all ages. I think that you could certainly start reading it before your child is nine. The book is basically a Biblical survey of the thread of Jesus’ redeeming his people that goes through the whole Bible. It is the perfect Lent read aloud picture book.
The Biggest Story ABC by Kevin DeYoung
This board book is the information from The Biggest Story, but condensed and simplified for babies and toddlers. If you like big theology in your board books, check out these absolute best Christian board books to teach your toddlers and preschoolers the Gospel.