25 Christ-Centered Christmas Books
Looking for the best Christian Christmas books for kids? Here is a list of 25 Christmas picture books that center on Jesus’ birthday.
Years ago already, I saw the idea on Pinterest to wrap a children’s book up each day to unwrap and read as part of the count-down to Christmas. The order doesn’t matter of the books because they are all focused on Christmas. I loved this idea of an Advent calendar with Christian Christmas books for kids! I knew that when we had children, I wanted to make this part of our Christmas traditions.
I’m a former preschool and elementary school teacher who loves to read so I have a lot of books. I’ve been collecting Christmas books for years! I started going through all my Christmas books and deciding which ones made the cut. Lots did but I’m adding some new ones to my collection every year as well
I had a simple criteria for my picture book Christmas count-down. I wanted all the books to be Christ-centered to help us stay focused on the true meaning of the season.
All these books have slightly different perspectives but stay true to the Biblical account of Jesus’ birth.
Of the list that I am sharing, I have read every single one of these books. I own most of them. Several, I checked out from the library to see if they met my approval and added them to my Christmas wish list. This is a good project to work on throughout the year, adding to your collection when you see good sales.
Your Christmas count-down will probably look different than mine – and that’s okay! I’m sharing this list to give you ideas of quality, Christian children’s literature focused on Christ this Christmas.
Start with the books that you already own and check out some from the library. See what sales or used copies you can track down on Amazon. Add some to your Christmas wish list. Maybe you will decide to surprise your children with a new Christmas book each year under the tree. This list can help with that as well!
Maybe you’ve had hopes to do something similar but were overwhelmed with all the books choices! I understand completely. I read a lot of Christmas books to chose ones of quality for my children – and for yours! I’ve included a list of the titles I will be using, as well as a short description of each. However you decide to use this list, I hope it will be helpful to you and your family!
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Here is my list of 25 Christian Christmas books for kids.
- Who is Coming to Our House? by Joseph Slate tells of animals in the barn wondering who is coming to their house / stable.
- A Child Was Born: A First Nativity Book by Grace Maccarone is a very simple first nativity book telling of the first Christmas.
- The Legend of the Candy Cane by Lori Walburg tells how the candy cane can teach about Jesus birth, life and resurrection.
- The Legend of the Christmas Cookie by Dandi Daley Mackall tells how European Christmas cookies began as another way to share the story of Jesus’ birth.
- The Legend of the Christmas Tree by Pat Matuszak & Rick Osborne tells how the evergreen tree symbolizes Christmas and can tell others about Jesus.
- The Pine Tree Parable by Liz Curtis Higgs is a simpler Christmas tree story that tells of the sacrifices of Christmas. Each page includes a Bible verse that adds to the story.
- The Legend of the Poinsettia by Tomie dePaola is a Mexican legend of how the poinsettia came to be when a girl gave her unselfish gift to baby Jesus.
- Bethlehem Barn by Debra Westgate-Silva uses an ancient legend to put a different spin on the Christmas story, but it is still reverent and sweet.
- Saint Nicholas: The Real Story of the Christmas Legend by Julie Stiegemeyer tells the true story of real life Christian Bishop Nicholas, whose generosity inspired others to give – all as a response to God’s gifts to us.
- The Manger Where Jesus Lay by Martha Larchar uses simple pictures and repetition to tell the Christmas story.
- The Newborn King by Cindy Robertson is the most Biblical accurate board book I have found that introduces young children to the true story of the first Christmas.
- Mortimer’s Christmas Manger by Karma Wilson is the story of a mouse who makes his home in the family’s nativity scene until he hears the story of whose home it really is.
- The Christmas Star by Moira Butterfield uses felt figure pictures to tell the Christmas story. This book continues all the way through the wise coming to little boy Jesus, which is rare to find in a Christmas children’s book!
- The Crippled Lamb by Max Lucado tells of a crippled lamb, Joshua, and reveals how God has a special plan for him – and us!
- God Gave Us Christmas by Lisa Tawn Bergren tells of a baby bear asking his mother who invented his Christmas. Mama bear leads him on an expedition to answer his questions and find God – who gave us the first Christmas.
- Itsy Bitsy Christmas by Max Lucado is written from the perspective of two tiny mice who wonder why a king would come to itsy bitsy Bethlehem for little ones like themselves.
- The First Christmas (The Birth of Jesus) by Mary Manz Simon is an early reader that clearly tells the Christmas story from Luke 2.
- Stable in Bethlehem: A Christmas Counting Book by Joy Hulme counts down from 12 drowsy doves to 7 soft sheep to 1 baby Savior to tell the Christmas story.
- Angel! Angel! What Do You See? by Cheri Dittmer tells the Christmas story, in a similar rhyming style to the classic Brown Bear, Brown Bear.
- Asleep in the Stable by Will Hillenbrand uses a baby Owl asking questions of his Mama to tell the Christmas story. I love how this book talks about both Jesus’ earthly father and his Heavenly Father.
- The Christmas Promise by Alison Mitchell does a beautiful job of telling of our new and rescuing King Jesus, and how all of God’s promises came true – in Jesus.
- Tonight You Are My Baby: Mary’s Christmas Gift by Jeannine Norris tells of Mary’s lullaby to Jesus on the night he is born, foreshadowing all he will do.
- The Very First Christmas by Paul Maier focuses on a detailed retelling of Luke 2. The board book is a simpler version of the story, still with the same beautiful illustrations.
- The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski tells of a grumpy woodcarver who is changed by carving a new nativity for a widow and her son. This is a longer book that is perfect for older children.
- Mary’s First Christmas by Walter Wangerin, Jr. is a gorgeous story (words and pictures) of Mary telling young boy Jesus the story of his birth. Again, it is a longer book that is perfect for a bit older children and adults alike. We read this book over several nights with our younger children, as it has a natural chapter book feel. This is one of my all-time favorite Christmas books!
Here are a couple more Christian Christmas books worth including on your list, if you want more options! Several of these are new that I am planning to add to add to our Christmas book collection.
- Peek and Find Christmas Story by Allia Zobel-Nolan and Steve Cox has hidden pictures and cut-outs for your child to find as you read the Christmas story.
- All is Bright: When God Came Down One Silent Night by Clay Anderson is a new book sweetly telling of the first Christmas.
- Happy Birthday, Christmas Child! A Nativity Counting Book by Laura Sassi is a board book that uses rhymes and numbers to tell of Jesus’ birthday.
- The Donkey’s Song by Jacki Kellum tells a rhyming Christmas story from the perspective of the donkey.
- The Good News of Christmas: Celebrating the Glory of Christ’s Birth Story by Rousseaux Brasseur is another new book, and a longer one, written for families to enjoy together.
There you have it! These are 25 of the Christian Christmas books for kids I will be reading with my four children this Christmas. What Christian Christmas books will you be reading with your children? I’d love to hear some of your favorites, as I’m sure this list will change and evolve over the years as we discover new favorites!
Could you recommend a children’s Christmas book that recounts the Biblical accuracy of Jesus birth, including the Wiseman showing up when he was a little older, not at the Nativity? Thank you.
Excellent question, Mary! That is one of my biggest pet peeves about Christmas books too. I don’t want the wise men at the manger…I want them at the house like the Bible says, where the child was! 🙂 Glad to know there are others seeking the same as me. I have two excellent recommendations for you! “The Very First Christmas” by Paul Maier is a detailed and Biblically accurate telling of the Christmas story, with the cave for a stable, and wise men arriving later at the house. There are beautiful illustrations as well! “Mary’s First Christmas” by Walter Wangerin Jr is a more creative story, of Mary telling the Christmas story to Jesus when he is a little boy. It is a beautiful retelling, with gorgeous illustrations, and one of my favorite Christmas books. In this one, the wise men also appear later in a house. I know this book is currently out of print, but it is well worth tracking down a copy on Ebay. I hope this helps, Mary! Merry CHRISTmas!
I just ordered almost every single one if these! So excited, thank you!
Thank you for these great suggestions! I do a new Christmas book for the girls each year (their “something to read” with our gifts of want, need, wear, read) so I will definitely be consulting this list in the future!
You’re so welcome, Lisa! I actually don’t own all of these yet (although I’ve read all of them) so Nathan will be getting some of these over the next couple years. I love giving a special book each year, too!
Thanks for sharing these! We always read The Littlest Shepherd and The Best Christmas Pageant Ever at Christmas. I’m going to add a few of these to our wishlist for Layla!
You’re welcome, Kate! I actually added a couple of this to our wishlist for Nathan, too! I have others, but these books were my absolute favorites after I read through dozens and dozens.
Many of these are our family favorites that we try to read every year. #1 was our all time favorite book when they were toddlers. It was very sad for me to admit that they were all too old to read it a couple of years ago. I packed it away for my grandchildren.
I highly recommend taking a break and reading together as a family during the busy days of December. You can also read together for the 12 days of Christmas from Christmas to Epiphany. We have so many books that we want to read that we can’t fit them all in before Christmas.
I would also add a version of Twas the Night Before Christmas-I think it is a classic that children should hear every year even though it is not Christian. After reading #9 we like that this poem calls him St. Nicholas.
I’m glad you are saving your favorites for grandbabies! That’s a great idea to continue reading through, Epiphany! There are so many wonderful Christmas books, but it’s fun to know that some on my list match up with yours!