Falling in love with history can be a hard thing to do. Finding the right resource to allow you or your children to fall in love with history makes a huge difference! Moe Man loves history. But just reading it is no fun all day long. We found and fell in love with Drive Thru History® for his Ancient History lessons. So when we found out Drive Thru History® had come out with an 18 Part Miniseries on the Life of Jesus of Nazareth, we were thrilled!
Learning about the bible is a great thing, but having a video course that will bring you on location is a blessing for our visual learners in this house! Drive Thru History® – "The Gospels" brings the history before Jesus, his birth, his life and his death alive to anyone who wants to watch it.
For this review, we received 3 DVDs and a study guide all wrapped up in a book that reminds me of a bible. The DVDs themselves, are regular looking DVDs, and if we had not already fallen in love with Drive Thru History®, I would have thought just that. The study guide is not what I was thinking. This study guide is like a picture book that one would want to sit down and flip through, not be forced to learn something.
Now, these basic looking DVDs that are the main part of this product, these are not basic DVDs. These DVDs are so full of beauty and wonder. Full of information and excitement. These DVDs brought us into the life of Jesus, and made the Gospels come to life for every one of us who sat down to watch.
The three DVDs contain the 18 episodes. They are:
Episode 1: The Historical Landscape
Episode 2: The Announcements
Episode 3: Jesus is Born
Episode 4: Jesus Grows Up
Episode 5: Jesus Starts His Ministry
Episode 6: Jesus Returns to Galilee
Episode 7: Jesus Begins His Miracles
Episode 8: Jesus Teaches with Authority
Episode 9: The Sermon on the Mount
Episode 10: Jesus Travels the Sea of Galilee
Episode 11: Jesus Travels North
Episode 12: A Final Trip to Jerusalem
Episode 13: Jesus Arrives in Jerusalem
Episode 14: The Last Supper
Episode 15: The Trial of Jesus
Episode 16: The Crucifixion of Jesus
Episode 17: The Resurrection of Jesus
Episode 18: Who is Jesus?
Dave Stotts takes us on location for these episodes. He talks to us the whole time, not the camera, not the "audience", but to us! The way he looks at the camera, makes it appears he is looking through the camera and holding eye contact with us. This draws us in and makes us want to listen.
Not only does Dave look at us when talking to us, he talks to us in a way that we understand. For some people, the bible can be confusing or boring when it comes to the dates and history, but when Dave talks, we understand. Not just mom and dad, but Moe Man all the way down to Ray Ray and Little Miss fell in love with listening to Dave talk to us.
The pictures and videos that we are shown are just, beautiful. And even that word does not describe what they really are. You feel like you are right there, on location. You can see and hear everything around you. If you had smell-o-vision, you would be able to smell everything. Something or someone is always moving on the screen, this kept the eyes on the screen and when we had our eyes on the screen, we were listening, and learning.
Now, on top of these wonderful, eye catching, bring you to location DVDs, we also had the study guide. For each episode, the study guide gives us a summary, five great discussion questions, readings from the bible and a small side road that brings just a tidbit of information forward from the episode. Not only that, but the pictures in the study guide are just as beautiful as the DVDs!
There are many ways for you to use these DVDs. You can focus on one a week or more. I really wanted to spend time during Holy Week watching the videos of Holy Week as our study for that week. When your family falls in love with the DVDs, it is not hard to watch them daily.
My one hint, as with any video that you decide to show your family, make sure you preview it first. Episode 16 is The Crucifixion of Jesus. While the bible tells you what happened, watching it can be something different. This episode starts off with a warning. You learn about the crucifixion, you see pictures of the beatings Jesus suffered, and there is an actor portrayal of the beatings and Jesus hanging on the cross. This was hard to see, even for me. We decided that Little Miss and Baby Girl did not need to see this. Ray Ray and Moe Man had the option to walk away as needed, but they were both so transfixed in seeing the story they had heard many times before. This one episode gave the boys a new respect for the true meaning of Easter. (Please note, all our kids have watched zombie shows, you MUST preview this episode and decide what would be best for your own children.)
After this episode, it was so nice to spend the time learning about the resurrection. Showing the kids the location of the tomb, the rock and making it more than a small stone, brought it to their attention the real power of what happened during the resurrection.
We may not have gone to the Holy Land, but after watching these DVDs, I can tell you, that I will never again feel the same of the life of Jesus. I feel as though as I had been there, without the cost of travel. I felt goosebumps many times while watching. I was not the only one. Everyone in our house have a new outlook on the Gospels, a new respect (which I didn't think was possible) for all that Jesus has done for us.
If you are looking for a way to bring the story of Jesus alive to your family, I would tell you to watch these episodes. If you wanted to spend time on location to where our Lord was born, lived and died yet cannot afford it, I would tell you to grab these episodes. If you want a one on one tour guide who will guide you through The Gospels, you NEED these episodes. I was thrilled with Drive Thru History® for our history lessons, but The Gospels has gone far and above what I thought they would. They opened my eyes and heart. For that I am thankful!!