Logos Mobile Education: Focus on Faculty

LME-LogoA few months ago, the era of Logos Mobile Education began with the Pre-Pub release of the Bible and Doctrine Foundations bundle. Mobile Ed brings the professors, the library, the visual demonstrations of software features, and the online classroom community directly to you—on your desktop, laptop, or mobile device. It’s education where you are.

A distinguishing feature of Mobile Ed is its faculty. Mobile Ed professors are seasoned classroom teachers, each with a minimum of 10 years’ experience. They’re also dedicated scholars and clear thinkers with considerable experience teaching in the local church. Many are well known as authors of books in the Logos Digital Library.

Experience, scholarship, and engagement

Faculty participation in Logos Mobile Ed was driven not only by experience and scholarship, but also by each professor’s ability to engage the audience in a conversational style. Mobile Ed lectures aren’t recorded with a video camera in the back of the room. The professors speak directly to you, one on one, in brief lecture segments.

The Mobile Ed format allows us to include professors from institutions all over the world. This enables us to present curricula offering specific interpretive and theological viewpoints from professors committed to those perspectives, while also allowing you to explore alternative positions if you so desire. The result is a unique faculty of scholar-communicators whose assembly would be impossible in a traditional educational experience.

Take the next step—or get started—on your journey to greater biblical and theological knowledge today with the Bible and Doctrine Foundations bundle

Why Philosophy Matters

People talk about philosophy in terms of “or.” Philosophy or faith. Philosophy or literature. Philosophy or science, as if the mind were incapable of doing both and reaching its own conclusions.

But that position is ahistorical—great thinkers have long worked across disciplines—and counterproductive: you can glean profound insights from philosophy without emptying it of artistic value, without betraying scientific principles, without sacrificing your faith.

Whatever your worldview, philosophy matters.

Here’s why:

1. Philosophy helps you engage your culture

ancient-philosophy-bundleTo understand your culture, you need to understand its prevailing ideas. When you know philosophy, you can see where modern perspectives come from.

If you’re a pastor, understanding the culture helps you identify and address your congregation’s weaknesses, doubts, and blind spots. If you’re a student, it helps you think clearly about who we are, how we got here, and where we’re going. If you’re a parent, it helps you answer your child’s questions about the world.

2. Philosophy sharpens your critical thinking

“The test of a first-rate intelligence,” wrote F. Scott Fitzgerald, “is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.” In that case, the study of opposing ideas is the training of intelligence. And philosophy is nothing if not the study of opposing ideas—universal classes of things vs. heterogeneous individual things, nonexistent selves vs. essential selves, rationalism vs. empiricism. As you follow the Great Conversation through the ages, you’ll consider more and more opposing accounts of the world. You’ll learn to recognize sophistry and language games, as opposed to attempts at truth.

(If you disagree with my arguments here, why? Have you found an unquestioned assumption, a circular argument, an inadequate proof? If so, you’re doing philosophy’s rhetorical work—and isn’t that a critical skill worth strengthening?)

3. You can cherry-pick the good

Some of the West’s most creative thinkers combined insights from disparate disciplines. Their genius wasn’t raw innovation; it was the creativity to pick out elements of disparate worldviews and combine them into something new. You can do the same—you can pick out philosophy’s useful elements without accepting the whole thing.

  • Not a postmodernist? You can still find insights into language in the twentieth-century “linguistic turn,” which studied how words’ forms (signifiers) and senses (signifieds) interact to create meaning.
  • Disagree with Kant’s conclusion that things in themselves are unknowable? You can still incorporate his categorization of knowledge as either sensible (five red balloons) or conceptual (fiveness, redness).
  • Not an existentialist? You can still appreciate Kierkegaard’s nuanced readings of Abraham, Job, and infinite faith.

4. When you know the old claims, you know the counterarguments

modern-philosophy-bundleSince most of today’s ideas aren’t new, neither are most of the interesting counterarguments. When you know intellectual history, you know time-tested answers—in advance.

  • Are you arguing with someone who doesn’t trust our sensory perceptions of the world—who thinks we might all be dreaming, or brains in a vat? Berkeley and Hume advanced similar arguments; Thomas Reid has already responded that common-sense belief in the world is the basis for any meaningful philosophy.
  • Defending moral absolutes against a relativist? Turn to the arguments of Socrates and Plato, who’ve already developed arguments for morality built on the notion of absolute truth.
  • Debating a vehement atheist who claims that the universe nowhere testifies to a creator? Aristotle, St. Anselm, Descartes, and Leibniz are ready with rational counterarguments.

5. Philosophy helps you understand your faith

Christian theology didn’t develop in a vacuum—Paul found philosophy worth engaging, after all. From then on, philosophy and theology developed side by side, but deeply intertwined. Augustine, Aquinas, Descartes, Kierkegaard—many of philosophy’s greatest thinkers were Christian, and many of philosophy’s greatest works address issues relevant to Christians (God, morality, origins). And philosophy is just as useful when it’s not Christian: it’s the context against which theological thought defined itself, so when you know the one, you better understand the other.

Even within deist thought, orthodox positions developed against a backdrop of unorthodox alternatives. As you study Western intellectual history, you’ll come across some nonbiblical but fascinating notions of the divine:

  • There’s Eriugena’s God, who “does not know . . . what He is because He is not a ‘what,’ being . . . incomprehensible both to Himself and to every intellect.”
  • There’s Alain de Lille’s God, “an intelligible [intellectually knowable] sphere, whose centre is everywhere, and whose circumference is nowhere.”
  • There’s Spinoza’s infinite God, roughly synonymous with the whole universe, of which thought, matter, and even human souls are all attributes.

Such alternative accounts are the negative space: the context against which, over time, modern theology established itself. To understand them is, in turn, to more fully understand the orthodox.

6. Philosophy matters because its questions matter

The value of philosophy isn’t just in its answers—it’s in the questions it asks. Though religion and philosophy disagree on much, they’re concerned with similar questions.

  • How should we live?
  • What are good deeds?
  • What can we know, and how?

If you’re thinking about these questions, you’re doing the work of philosophy. You may reach conclusions vastly different from those of Plato or Kant, but you’re still interested in the same things. That alone makes philosophy worth studying.

* * *

noet-classical-foundations-bundleFor centuries, thinkers have turned to the West’s philosophical canon for time-tested wisdom, fascinating questions, and sheer intellectual pleasure. Now, with Noet, you’ll be able to study these works in the most useful format they’ve ever appeared in.

Noet’s Classical Foundations Bundle (124 volumes, plus the Perseus Classics) sets you up with the core texts of the Western tradition: Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant, as well as Homer, Dante, Milton, Dostoyevsky, and far, far more. With Logos’ original-language tagging and smart searches, you’ll be ready to grasp Greek and Latin nuance and find just what you’re looking for.

Philosophy matters. Study it with the very best tools.

Pre-order your Classical Foundations Bundle before the price goes up, or customize your library with Noet’s Ancient and Modern Philosophy bundles.

Or keep reading—how well do you know the sophists?

What Informs Your Interpretation of Genesis?

lexham-bible-guides-genesis-collectionWhat influences your interpretation of Scripture? What is the origin of the particular interpretation you hold? Are you familiar with alternative interpretations? How would you defend your interpretation against others?

Although apologists are usually the ones asking these questions, anyone seeking to interpret Scripture should do the same. We think of ourselves as unbiased, logical people, but reading others’ opinions reveals whether we truly are. Such reading also informs our discussions about Scripture, making us better interpreters and better conversationalists, evangelists, and preachers.

Each part of Scripture deserves close examination, but Genesis holds a special place in the canon. It’s a rich, complex book that’s referenced throughout the Bible and that serves as a theological backdrop for much of Scripture. As such, it will shape how you interpret the Bible.

We all wrestle with questions about the origins of the world, the first sin, and where we came from. Genesis tells the story of humanity and God—our story.

The Lexham Bible Guides: Genesis Collection unravels the book’s complicated differences of interpretation. It breaks down each passage, helping you understand what each section contributes and how they fit together. This collection will guide you into a deeper study of Genesis while simultaneously improving your understanding of the entire biblical narrative, which depends on this book’s foundational theology. Understanding Genesis will equip you to answer your own apologetic questions and others’.

Why spend hours in research when Logos can help? Leverage our research team’s work. Get into Genesis in a way that will enhance your understanding of it and the entire Bible. Pick up the Lexham Bible Guides: Genesis Collection today.

Through October 18, use coupon code LBGGEN2 to save on Lexham Bible Guides: Genesis Collection.

Free Book: Archibald T. Robertson’s Paul, the Interpreter of Christ

paul-the-interpreter-of-christAll month long, you can get Archibald T. Robertson’s Paul, the Interpreter of Christ for free!

Archibald T. Robertson dedicated his life to preaching, teaching, writing, and lecturing. He was a founding member of the Baptist World Alliance, and participated in numerous Bible conferences with Dwight Moody and F. B. Meyer. Committed to providing students the best preaching tools possible, he published 45 books, which remain profoundly relevant today.

“The preacher whose heart is deeply stirred even to tears, is the man whose message will grip the hearts of others”
—Archibald T. Robertson, Paul, the Interpreter of Christ

Paul, the Interpreter of Christ explores Paul’s life, including the sacraments, his missionary efforts, and his relationship to Greek culture.

Visit the Free Book of the Month page to download Paul, the Interpreter of Christ now, and then enter to win the 15-volume A. T. Robertson Collection!

Get $50 off Jonathan Edwards’ Inspiring Works

Jonathan_EdwardsJonathan Edwards was born October 5, 1703—nearly 310 years ago. Now, as you prepare to celebrate his influence by revisiting his sermons and treatises, you can use coupon code JEDWARDS2013 to save $50 on his collected works!

Regarded by many as “America’s theologian,” Edwards wrote in vivid detail on two subjects: the absolute sovereignty of God and the beauty of God’s holiness.

A precocious, disciplined life of faith

Edwards was born in Connecticut to unusual parents. His father tutored college hopefuls across New England, and his mother, uniquely independent and well educated among American women of her era, raised 11 children, mostly on her own.

A bright student, Edwards entered Yale College at 13 and graduated, at 17, as class valedictorian. Before choosing, after graduation, to study theology and philosophy, he was deeply interested in science—specifically, the work of Isaac Newton. He was a man fascinated with the universe, and he sought to understand every corner of it.

Edwards was ordained and married in the same year, 1727. He demonstrated remarkable personal discipline, studying thirteen hours a day and preaching a pair of two-hour sermons each week.

A father of the Great Awakening

On July 7, 1731, Edwards delivered a powerful sermon to which 300 people responded with professions of faith. Sermons in the weeks to follow were met with even more conversions, and the revival spread from Northampton throughout the 13 colonies, gaining even more momentum when George Whitfield arrived from England to partner with Edwards.

The two could not have been more opposite. Whitfield was an imposing physical presence with a booming baritone voice who never used notes when he preached. Edwards’ voice, by contrast, was not strong, but solemn and eloquent. He read his sermons from a small booklet that he’d made himself by sewing together small pieces of paper, most of which had been already used for other purposes. It was all but impossible to see his face when he preached—poor eyesight caused him to hold his recycled notes inches from his nose. But Edwards, despite his lack of flash, led thousands to repentance through his profound preaching.

Learn from Edwards’ historic sermons

The Works of Jonathan Edwards (2 vols.) contains more than 29 of his sermons, including the iconic “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” as well as his theological discourses and the Life and Diary of the Rev. David Brainerd (by whom Edwards was greatly inspired). If you’ve ever wanted to get acquainted with the works of Jonathan Edwards, now is the time—this discount lasts only until October 7.

Celebrate Edwards’ birthday by delving into his life-changing works: get $50 off with coupon code JEDWARDS2013 today!

Pastor Appreciation: New Deals All October!

Pastor Appreciation Month

“We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work.” —1 Thessalonians 5:12–13

It’s time to celebrate your pastor! Pastor Appreciation Month is here, which means we’re featuring deep discounts on pastoral resources all October long. We’ll be introducing new sales almost every day, plus giving away a free book (later in the month) and offering resources for up to 50% off.

Get 15% off a new Logos 5 base package

We’re kick-starting Pastor Appreciation Month with a great deal on a powerful pastoral tool: for a limited time, you can use coupon code PAM2013 to get 15% off a new Logos 5 base package.

Logos 5 equips pastors with the best Bible study tools and theological resources. With advanced features like Timeline, Bible Facts, and Clause Search, pastors can spend less time poring over indexes and tables of contents, and more time creating powerful sermons. And with the best biblical commentaries, dictionaries, and resources, they can build their sermons on rich context and scriptural truth.

Use coupon code PAM2013 to get 15% off Logos 5, and then stay tuned for more Pastor Appreciation Month deals!

Honor your pastor

This month exists to remind you to honor your pastor. Being a pastor is one of the toughest jobs, and this is the perfect opportunity to pray and encourage the church leaders in your life. Take them out to lunch, send them a card, bake them some cookies—whatever you do, just remember to tell your clergy how much you appreciate the hard work they do for you, the church, and the community, all in the name of Jesus Christ.

Don’t miss a single deal: check Logos.com/PAM throughout October for new sales all month long!

What do you appreciate most about your pastor? Let us know in the comments!