Archive - April, 2008

Does Logos Really Save You Time?

It depends on the meaning of “save.”

Time is very important to us in our busy world. Most of us feel like we never have enough of it. There are so many good and important things vying for our time. That’s why we in the marketing department like to stress how much time Logos can save you. Pastors can greatly reduce the amount of time they spend preparing sermons by not having to (1) pull print books off shelves, (2) look up references in hard-to-read indexes, (3) turn pages by hand, and (4) type out things they want to quote. By running the Passage Guide and the Exegetical Guide, they have instant access to a wealth of information at the click of a mouse.

But I wonder how it really works in the real world. Do pastors who used to spend 15 hours a week doing sermon prep with paper books now spend only 7 or 8 hours with Logos? Do they “save” time in the sense of spending less than they used to?

I was talking with a pastor recently who just got Scholar’s Library: Gold, our biggest collection of resources. After he finished installing it and started exploring all the features and books, his wife began to wonder what to think of his new toy—I mean, tool. Would she now have even less time to spend with her husband? I tried to reassure her that Logos would in theory give her husband more time to spend with her, not less.

The pastor replied to me later in an email—half joking, I think—that instead of taking half the time, his sermons might actually take him twice as long to prepare, considering how much fun he was having digging into such a huge library of resources!

While it’s true that Logos greatly reduces the amount of time it takes to perform certain Bible study tasks, it’s possible that you may find yourself, like this pastor, enjoying your sermon prep so much that instead of spending less time, you’re actually spending as much time or more—and turning out a better product. Now, to be sure, Logos is still helping you “save” time, even if you do end up spending more of it than you used it. How so? With Logos you can be far more productive. Your time is better spent because less of it is wasted. And less wasted time means more time saved.

Whether you’re spending more or less time than you used to spend, the biggest benefit of Logos is how it dramatically improves your efficiency and quality of study. So in either sense, Logos does really save you time by enabling you to get more done—in whatever length of time you choose to spend—than you could with your print library.

I’m curious to hear from our pastors. Which category do you generally fall into? Do you find yourself spending less time now that you use Logos? Or do you just prepare a better sermon in the same block of time?

Libronix for Lutherans

We strive to provide a broad spectrum of digital Christian resources and not just books that will be of interest to a certain group of people. Average Christians, pastors, and scholars from a wide range of denominations will all find a large number of relevant and useful titles.

There are certainly categories where we can improve, so we’re always glad to hear from our users and find out what you’d like to see more of. When it’s clear that there is sufficient interest and publishers are willing to work with us, we do our best to make those titles available. Send your emails to suggest@logos.com, and let us know what we’re missing. We’re listening.

Works of Martin Luther

One particular group that we have a very nice collection of resources for is Lutherans. For starters there’s the massive 55 volume Luther’s Works on CD-ROM, an essential for not only Lutherans but for everyone who wants to study the history and theology of the Reformation. If 55 volumes is too overwhelming, you could begin with Martin Luther’s 95 Theses, his Commentary on Galatians, and Martin Luther’s Basic Theological Writings (which is part of the Augsburg Fortress Collection (18 titles))—and, if you know German, the Luther Bibel (1545) and the Luther Bibel (1912).

Concordia Electronic Theological Library

Another tremendous resource is the Concordia Electronic Theological Library—Complete Collection (also available in nine individual collections), which is packed with important literature like Melanchthon’s Loci Communes, Martin Chemnitz’ Examination of the Council of Trent, Pieper’s Christian Dogmatics, and many others. It also contains the Tappert edition of the Book of Concord, but the new edition of the Book of Concord, which is edited by Robert Kolb and Timothy Wengert, is also available as a separate product.

Northwestern Publishing House Electronic Library

There’s also a great new collection of resources from Northwestern Publishing House. The Northwestern Publishing House Electronic Library (CD-ROM) contains the 41 volumes of the popular The People’s Bible series; the Bente edition of the Lutheran confessions with the complete Latin, German, and English texts and their historical introductions; 40 volumes of Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly (1950-89); 11 volumes of sermon studies; and the Franzmann Bible History Commentary on the Old and New Testaments.

Lenski’s Commentary on the New Testament

And last but not least is Lenski’s Commentary on the New Testament (12 volumes), which is now on Pre-Pub. Users of a variety of denominational backgrounds have been asking for Lenski for years. It’s great to finally make it available. Interest in Lenski was clear by how quickly it reached 100% of the pre-orders needed to send it into production. It’s been up for only a few days, and it’s already hit the mark!

If we are weak in an area of particular interest to you, keep sending in those suggestions and show your support for the kinds of resources you’d like to see more of by helping them make it through the Pre-Pub process.

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