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Discovering Community on the Logos Forums

collections

Today’s guest blogger is Kevin Becker, a Logos Forum MVP.

My first foray into Logos’ forums was on the day that Logos 4 was released. I was looking to download a particular file but I couldn’t find the download link on Logos’ website. Sure enough, the helpful forum folk provided the link.

I downloaded my software and it started indexing. As I poked around, I realized that, while many things were familiar from Libronix, other things were foreign. I knew I needed help, so I returned to the forum, and I’ve been reading and posting ever since. It’s rewarding to help someone figure out how to leverage Logos to do Bible study. I love imagining people sitting around the world having “Aha!” moments, not just from figuring out how to use Logos’ power but from the discoveries they make as they study God’s word. The forum has become a ministry.

I’ve also reaped great benefits from learning many things from the collective wisdom of forum participants. I wouldn’t know how to use the syntax search with any confidence if not for other gracious forum members teaching me. Logos’ leadership and employees also participate in the forums. My confidence in my e-book investment has grown as I’ve seen them act with grace and wisdom. They really listen to user suggestions; I’ve seen numerous suggestions make their way into Logos 4.

I also love the community on the forums. There are active users from all over the world. I’ve enjoyed learning about different cultures; American, British, and Australian flavors of English are all present, plus many for whom English is a second (or third or fourth or fifth) language. It is a blessing to have a close reminder of the global scope of Christ’s bride.

The most unique cross-cultural experience I’ve had has been helping Ghebreab, an African man living in Germany who uses Logos to prepare for a Bible study. One day, he was having trouble understanding a particular thread on the forum so we started corresponding via email. We then began talking on the telephone and using remote desktop software so I could interact with his computer and show him what I was talking about, step by step. We don’t always understand each other, but I love actually getting to hear the moment when something clicks for Ghebreab, when he grasps how he can use a particular feature of Logos 4 to help him study the Bible and then bring it before his study group. And I get to be a part of it—how cool is that!?

So, in the end, it is not learning how to use Logos, catching the latest news about the company, or running up a ridiculously high post count that keeps me coming back to the forums but the sense of community there, in studying the Bible and helping others. If you don’t use the forum , please stop by and ask your questions and contribute ideas and solutions. I think you’ll find, as I have, that you’ll learn a lot more than how to use your Bible software.

10 Great Anglican Resources on Pre-Pub

Anglican
Today’s guest post is by Elliot Ritzema, from the Logos Bible Software Design & Editorial team.

With around 400 resources currently on the Pre-Pub page, it can be hard to find a path through all the options to what really may interest you. For example, there are several collections with titles like “The Whole/Complete/Exhaustive/Collected Works of _____.” Some of these people are widely read and recognized. Others you may recognize but don’t know much about. Still others may be names that you’ve never heard of.

To keep from being overwhelmed by all the choices, I like to group resources by something they have in common. For those of you who are Anglican, or interested in Anglican history and theology, here are ten sets currently gathering interest or under development. Here they are, arranged chronologically:

  1. Thomas Cranmer Collection
  2. Cranmer (1489-1556) was a leader of the English Reformation and was Archbishop of Canterbury when the Church of England separated from the Catholic Church. He is responsible for compiling and writing the Book of Common Prayer.

  3. The Works of that Learned and Judicious Divine, Mr. Richard Hooker
  4. Hooker’s (1554-1600) writings, especially Of the Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity (in which he tried to find a middle way between Catholicism and Puritanism) were very influential on later Anglicanism as well as political theory.

  5. The Whole Works of the Rev. John Lightfoot
  6. Lightfoot (1602-1675) was a clergyman and rabbinical scholar who attended the Westminster Assembly. This collection includes his account of the first two years of the assembly, among other writings. He is also the author of A Commentary on the New Testament from the Talmud and Hebraica.

  7. The Works of George Whitefield
  8. Whitefield (1714-1770) was an evangelist who often paid little attention to sectarian distinctions, but I’ve included him here because he was a lifelong member of the Church of England. This collection includes many of his letters and sermons, as well as five biographical works.

  9. The Works of Augustus M. Toplady
  10. He is best known as the writer of the hymn “Rock of Ages.” In early years Toplady (1740-1778) was influenced by John Wesley, but later he became a convinced (and often polemical) Calvinist.

  11. A Practical View of Christianity
  12. William Wilberforce (1759-1833) is famous for his efforts to abolish the slave trade in the British Empire, but he also worked to reform British morality as a whole by encouraging people to adopt “serious religion.” He wrote this book to that end, as is shown by its full title: A Practical View of the Prevailing Religious System of Professed Christians in the Higher and Middle Classes in this Country, Contrasted with Real Christianity. It was a bestseller.

  13. Collected Works of John Henry Newman
  14. He famously converted to Catholicism in mid-life (and was recently beatified by the Catholic Church), but Newman (1801-1890) began his public career as an Anglican active in the Oxford Movement. This collection of his writings should be of interest not only to both Catholics and Anglicans, but also those interested in 19th-century English history and lovers of great writing. Excerpts from Newman’s Apologia Pro Vita Sua and The Idea of a University, among other works, have appeared in collections like the Norton Anthology of English Literature.

  15. J.C. Ryle Collection
  16. Ryle (1816-1900) was bishop of Liverpool from 1880 until his death. He was a leader of the evangelical wing of the Church of England, and his writings were influenced by Puritan theology. In turn, his book Holiness: Its Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties and Roots influenced a young J.I. Packer.

  17. Joseph Barber Lightfoot Collection
  18. Not to be confused with John Lightfoot, J.B. Lightfoot (1828-1889) was bishop of Durham from 1879 until his death. He is known today primarily as a New Testament and patristic scholar. This collection includes lecture notes, commentary manuscripts and sermons which are not included in his other books that are published by Logos.

  19. Edwin Hatch Collection
  20. Hatch (1835-1889) was a Greek scholar and church historian. His Essays in Biblical Greek is shipping next month. This collection focuses on his historical writing, and includes his controversial The Influence of Greek Ideas and Usages Upon the Christian Church.

    Finally, I will call your attention to a collection that does not deal exclusively with Anglicanism:

  21. Christianity in the British Isles Collection (6 vols)
  22. This collection contains some fantastic and informative resources like Anglicanism and the Christian Church: Theological Resources in Historical Perspective by Paul Avis and The Free Church of England: Introduction to an Anglican Tradition by John Fenwick.

If I haven’t mentioned your favorite Anglican resource on Pre-Pub, feel free to mention them in a comment below.

Introducing the Foundations of Theology Bundle

Bundle

Have you been looking for a strong collection of theology books to add to your digital library? Or perhaps you have been looking for a good entry level bundle to help you develop your theological resources. Well, look no further. The new Foundations of Theology Bundle is not only a great place to begin growing your theological collection, it is a handpicked selection of formidable titles that will add value to your Logos 4 resources.

The Foundations of Theology Bundle compiles the works of heavyweights from across the theological spectrum. The result is a trustworthy collection of biblically rich materials to enrich your study and understanding.

The titles included in the 15 volume Foundations of Theology Bundle include:

Berkhof’s Systematic Theology

One of the most important and widely-used systematic theologies since its release in 1938, Berkhof’s Systematic Theology articulates Reformed theology in the traditions of Abraham Kuyper and Herman Bavinck.

Chafer’s Systematic Theology (8 Vols.)

This has been a seminal resource since its release in 1948. Written by Lewis Sperry Chafer, the founding president of Dallas Theological Seminary and long-time editor of Bibliotheca Sacra, this was the first dispensational, premillenial systematic theology ever published.

Ryrie’s Basic Theology

Written with a clear understanding of the Scriptures and an unpretentious style, Charles Ryrie’s classic Basic Theology is a standard text for many Bible students and pastors. In fact, Ryrie’s theology is required reading for a variety of seminary courses.

Foundations of the Christian Faith by James Montgomery Boice

In one systematic volume, James Boice provides a readable overview of Christian theology. Whether teacher or student, pastor or layperson, Foundations of the Christian Faith will provide a rich source of Scriptural knowledge, covering all the major doctrines of Christianity. Boice maintains a remarkable practicality and thoroughness that have made this a standard reference and text for over two decades.

Systematic Theology (4 vols.) by Norman Geisler

Theologian and apologist Norman Geisler has been one of the most prolific and influential leaders in the area of evangelical apologetics. For over forty years he has studied and defended the faith as an author and as an internationally known speaker and debater. He brings vast experience to his magnum opus, the four volumes of Systematic Theology.

These books—purchased separately—would cost nearly $450.00, but the Foundations of Theology Bundle sells them for $299.95. That’s a savings of about $150.00!

If you are just beginning to compile your theological library, or even if you want to add some incredible resources to your deep theological collection, you can’t go wrong with the Foundations of Theology Bundle.

The Logos 4 Mac Celebration Continues

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The Logos 4 Mac Giveaway, one of the most exciting giveaways we have ever done, has come to an end. But don’t worry—the party has just started!

To celebrate the shipping of Logos 4 Mac, we are offering a 20% discount on all of our base packages for a limited time! This means that you can get a deep discount on Platinum, our most popular package. And by using our Payment Plan, you can even spread the discounted price over twelve months. You don’t have to be a Mac enthusiast to take advantage of this great deal.

Are you considering an upgrade? Jump over to our upgrade page. You can also get a discount of up to 20% off on base package upgrades.

If you are already using Logos 4 Mac, make sure that you check out our:

While you’re at it, why not throw one of our Mac Web Banners on your blog or website? Let’s invite some more people to join this celebration!

A Collection of 14 Books on How to be Dogmatic?!?

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No, Berkouwer’s Studies in Dogmatics is not actually about how to be dogmatic (that is, how to present your opinions as unchallengeable or the final word). In the field of theology, dogmatic refers to a study of doctrine. Studies in Dogmatics is a 14 volume work on some of the most important doctrine in church history.

Walter Elwell, Professor Emeritus of Bible and Theology at Wheaton College, had this to say about Berkouwer’s Studies in Dogmatics: “[It is] perhaps the most monumental evangelical theological project of [the last] century. Written in almost conversational style, these volumes deal with topics of theological concern, such as divine election, faith and sanctification, Holy Scripture, and the church, rather than presenting a tightly argued system of thought. . . . Perhaps the outstanding Reformed theologian of this generation, Berkouwer never wavered from his commitment to the principles of Scripture, faith, and grace alone” (Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, pg. 151).

Want to see what you can do with Studies in Dogmatics in Logos Bible Software? Check out my video below.

Interested in a concise book on Reformed doctrine? Pick up Summary of Christian Doctrine by Louis Berkhof for $18. (Both Berkouwer and Louis Berkhof were influenced by Abraham Kuyper and Herman Bavinck.)

Announcing BibleTech 2011!

BibleTech

We are gearing up for BibleTech 2011, which will be held in Seattle, WA, March 25–26. This will be our fourth annual conference focusing on the many ways technology is affecting and being affected by how we translate, interpret, communicate and transmit the Scriptures. BibleTech isn’t just a great opportunity to hear speakers address many of the tech savvy issues that are important to you, but also a chance to interact and network with industry leaders and others who share your interests. Stories abound of the working relationships and friendships initiated at BibleTech conferences.

Calling all presenters!

We are putting out a call for programmers, publishers, tagging experts, information/library scientists, technologists, thought leaders, design gurus, information architects, webmasters, or anyone working at the intersection of the Bible and technology to lead conference sessions and round-table discussions! It is as easy as clicking on entry link filling out the participation form.

We get a lot of entries and we encourage you to be as descriptive as possible when sharing your ideas for topics and content. And, if you have multiple ideas for sessions, feel free to fill out multiple entries.

We will close the call for participation on November 30 so that we can choose the best session speakers for next year. Please have your entry in by then!

Get the latest information about BibleTech 2011

Come “like” us on Facebook and get the latest BibleTech information right in your news feed. You can also follow us on Twitter.

Registration

Register today for $159.95 and guarantee that you don’t miss out on BibleTech 2011!

You should follow us on Twitter here.

What’s New at FreeBookPreview.com?

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If you haven’t downloaded the Logos Bible Software iPhone app, what are you waiting for? It is not only an absolutely free mobile solution for your Bible study needs and an incredible complement to your Logos base package* (giving you access to many of your resources wherever you are), it also gives you free previews of entire Christian books right there on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch.

With FreeBookPreview.com you can examine a book as closely as you want for the preview period. It’s sort of like going to your local bookstore and getting an entire week to really peruse a book before you buy it (except you get to take the text with you, wherever you go). Then—when you love it—you can purchase a print edition right there from the app, or sometimes even add it to your Logos Bible Software resources.

Continue Reading…

Daniel Wallace Writes the Foreword to Discourse Grammar

discoursegrammar

Today’s guest post is from Michael Aubrey, on the marketing team.

The name Daniel Wallace is well-known to today’s Greek students. He’s been teaching at Dallas Theological Seminary for years. His invaluable intermediate grammar, Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics, is used in Bible colleges and seminaries all over the world and in more than two thirds of the schools teaching New Testament Greek in the United States. He’s the senior New Testament editor of the NET Bible and the founder of The Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts.

Because of Dr. Wallace’s standing in schools and seminaries and his own contributions to Greek grammar, we were so excited when it was confirmed that he would write the foreword to Steve Runge’s Discourse Grammar of the Greek New Testament! Steve had originally written the Discourse Grammar in order to fill a gap. In Wallace’s own preface to Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics, he had written:

“Contrary to the current trend, this work has no chapter on discourse analysis. . . . DA is too significant a topic to receive merely a token treatment, appended as it were to the end of a book on grammar. It deserves its own full-blown discussion, such as can be found in the works of Cotterell and Turner, D. A. Black, and others.”

And yet, those who have picked up Cotterell and Turner’s Linguistics and Biblical Interpretation or D. A. Black’s Linguistics and New Testament Interpretation: Essays on Discourse Analysis know that the authors of these important volumes never intend their work to function as a comprehensive introduction to discourse grammar. The latter is a collection of high quality, but technical essays on specific topics in discourse analysis (which Steve refers to at several points) and the former has as its central focus issues related to hermeneutics and interpretation rather than grammar.” Steve Runge’s Discourse Grammar complements both of these important books by filling in the gap between grammar and interpretation (Cotterell and Turner’s volume) and between traditional grammar and advanced discourse studies (D. A. Black’s book).

And with these realities in mind, we were excited to see these words in Dr. Wallace’s foreword:

This volume is long overdue. Students of the New Testament have been barraged for decades with linguists touting the value of discourse analysis, but few works have demonstrated its importance for exegesis. . . . What Runge has done is to focus on the exegetical significance of discourse grammar for Neutestamenters. He has gathered together several strands of linguistic insights (he calls his approach ‘cross-linguistic’ and ‘function-based’) that are often treated in isolation and sometimes without much more than lip service for exegesis. In short, Runge has made discourse analysis accessible, systematic, comprehensive, and meaningful to students of the New Testament. His presentation is clear, straightforward, and well researched. . . . I have learned a great deal from this volume and will continue to do so for many years. To students of the New Testament, I say, “The time has come. Tolle lege!

Check out Steve’s Discourse Grammar of the Greek New Testament for yourself, you’ll be glad that you did!

Now Shipping: Logos 4 Mac

Mac

Today Is the Day!

After a lot of work and tons of anticipation, we are shipping Logos 4 Mac. We are celebrating this tremendous event with special discounts on all of our base packages and base package upgrades!

The completion of Logos 4 Mac is another huge step in our “one license, any platform” philosophy. Logos Bible Software makes it easy to access the resources in your library when and where you need them whether it is on Mac, Windows, iPhone, iPad, or on the web with Biblia.com.

I caught up with David Mitchell, the Macintosh Technical Lead, and asked him a few questions about the release of Logos 4 Mac.

The origins for Logos 4 Mac really go back to the very beginning of Logos 4 right?

Right. In mid-2006, the development team at Logos started working on an incredibly ambitious project that would eventually become Logos 4. We started by throwing out much of the work that had been done since 1999 and re-imagining what Bible study could be like. This was no small decision, but we realized that in order to take a leap forward, we’d need to start over.

So we chose new technologies. We redesigned features. We thought about how to make the product more approachable to the new or casual user. And we wrote code. Lots of code.

How did you get started working on the Mac product and where did you go from there?

About halfway through the development cycle for Logos 4, Libronix 1.0 for Mac was released, and I was given the opportunity to shift my attention to building Logos 4 for Mac. As we had done with Libronix for Windows, I eventually decided to scrap Libronix for Mac so that we could use all of new the code that had been written for Logos 4 for Windows. This, too, was no small decision, but we knew that it had to be done if we wanted to make the best Bible study experience anywhere available to Mac users.

So we chose even more new technologies. We redesigned code so that it was more portable. We thought about how the ideas we had come up with for Logos 4 would fit best within the context of a Macintosh application. And we hired developers: the team working on Logos 4 for Macintosh today is the same size that the Windows team was when I joined in early 2006.

It sounds like it was a lot of work.

Along the way, many on the team have endured sleepless nights working on code or helping just one more user on the forums. We opened an office in Bellevue and brought in extra developers to help us finish more quickly. And we were robbed . . . twice.

Catching up to the Windows version of Logos 4 has been no small task, but delivering Logos 4 for Mac to you today makes it all worthwhile. I hope everyone enjoys using it as much as I’ve enjoyed writing it.

Logos wants to thank the Mac team for their long hours and tireless work in getting us to where we are today.

Remember, you don’t have to be a Mac user to help us celebrate the release of Logos 4 Mac. Take advantage of our special discounts on all of our base packages and base package upgrades.

Thomas Forsyth Torrance on Logos Bible Software

Torrence
Today’s guest post is by Kyle Anderson, from the Logos Bible Software electronic text development team.

For many, the former University of Edinburgh professor Thomas Forsyth Torrance is best known as the person (alongside the late esteemed Geoffrey Bromiley) responsible for translating Karl Barth’s massive (over 10,000 pages) Church Dogmatics into English and introducing the English-speaking world to the towering theology of Karl Barth.

While we should applaud Torrance for this achievement, we should also keep in mind that he too was a top-notch theologian who spent most of his career working tirelessly for the benefit of the Church through his studies of Patristic theology, the person and work of Jesus Christ, the doctrine of the trinity, our knowledge of God, and reconciling theology and the natural sciences.

Torrance never wavered in his devotion to the Church. Born the oldest son of Chinese missionaries, Torrance began his career not as a professor, but as a parish pastor. This experience helped him develop a deep belief that would shape him the rest of his life: Christian thinking and action is for the glory of God and the benefit of the Church. One of the more famous stories of his life is the 81 year old Torrance traversing the mountains of the Wenchuan area of China carrying a money belt containing 11,200 yuan to help rebuild churches destroyed by the communist takeover in 1935. That’s quite an image for an elder theologian of Torrance’s caliber!

But what about his theology? Currently Logos carries four of his publications. Taken together they form a nice introduction his life’s work.

The first, The Christian Doctrine of God, uses Patristic theology to argue that within the life of God there is trinity in unity and unity in trinity. Or to put it another way: in God’s one being there are three persons—God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—and those three persons are one being. For the Christian Church, the doctrine of the trinity isn’t some speculative mind exercise but leads us into a deeper place of worship. Further, he adds, understanding who God is in Himself is to know who God is for us. Because, as Torrance never tires of pointing out, there can be no separation between the being of God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and how He has gone about saving us.

The second, Space, Time, and Incarnation, addresses two of Torrance’s specialties: Church history and the person of Jesus Christ. Space, Time, and Incarnation is unique in that rather than being a standard Christology volume, it looks at the spatial aspects of the incarnation. Namely, Torrance rejects the Greek philosophical tradition that thinks of space in terms of a container in favor of the early Church’s belief that in the incarnation Jesus Christ made space for himself. This view was made most visibly manifest in the Nicene term homoousious whereby Jesus is affirmed as one substance of God the Father and the term perichoresis in which there is a mutual indwelling between the person of the trinity. According to Torrance this has a profound impact on the way we speak of Jesus’ presence in our life and worship, even shaping the way we think scientifically about nature.

Lastly, Torrance is well-known for his work in combing the Christian faith with the work of the natural sciences. Our last two volumes: The Ground and Grammar of Theology and Divine and Contingent Order address these questions. In both volumes Torrance calls both the theologian and natural scientist alike to forgo the dualistic habits of mind that have dominated scientific thinking in a post-Copernicus landscape. Instead, both the theologian and the scientist have a scientific obligation to faithfully identify and describe phenomena as they are presented to us without rupturing the world into two realms—the spiritual and the phenomenal. Thus, rather than being competing worldviews both the theologian and the scientist are engaged in an enterprise of faithfully describing what God has presented to us. All persons are God’s priests of creation who are charged by God to identify, name and “to bring to expression the manifold realities of the created world around him . . . to bring the universe to view and understanding in its inherent harmonies and regularities and thus to allow the basic design, the meaning, of the universe to become disclosed.”

If you are in the market to grow your theology library, you really should look into Thomas Forsyth Torrance. You can also find three of Torrance’s works in the nine volume Science & Theology Collection!