My Official Introduction

I’m Phil Gons, the new guy in the marketing department. My wife, Shanna, and I just moved to Bellingham from sunny South Carolina a week ago. My job here at Logos is to try to fill the void left by Daniel Foster’s departure. From what I hear, I’ve got some big shoes to fill. Fortunately, I’m surrounded by very gifted people who are making learning the ropes less daunting. (Thanks to Mark and Ben for tolerating all my questions and requests!)

I’ll be doing a lot of PR stuff like working with product reviewers and press reporters and trying to get Logos exposure in print and online publications. I’ll also be involved in writing and maintaining some of the content at Logos.com, managing our affiliate program, and doing many other things to get the word out about all that Logos can do for laymen, students, pastors, and scholars in their personal Bible study, sermon preparation, and writing.

I have an undergraduate degree in Bible with a minor in ancient languages and a master’s degree in Bible. I’m slowly working on my dissertation for a PhD in Theology. I love biblical studies, theology, and technology, so being a part of Logos means I get to be a part of the things I’m passionate about.

I’ve been a Logos user for just about three years now. I’ve spent enough money on Logos software to buy a decent used car! I love it, use it daily, and highly recommend it to others.

In addition to my regular contributions here, I also blog once or twice a week on my personal blog.

Listen to Dr. H. Wayne House’s Lecture

This past Monday (October 22) Dr. H. Wayne House gave his lecture “The Jesus Who Never Lived: False Christs and the Authentic Jesus.”

Click here to listen to Dr. House’s lecture.

Dr. House spoke for approximately one hour and then took questions for another 15 minutes. One of the highlights of his lecture was the incorporation of content from the Dead Sea Scrolls into New Testament interpretation. Dr. House had some amazing things to say regarding what the Jews would have expected from a Messiah, and how Jesus fulfilled those expectations in his life and teaching.

This lecture is highly recommended for those who want to combat the inaccuracies of some modern thoughts on the identity of Christ – including the Da Vinci Code, the Jesus Seminar, and the late Peter Jennings’ documentary on the historical Jesus.

Enjoy the lecture!

The Jesus Who Never Lived

Tonight Logos welcomes author and professor Dr. H. Wayne House to Bellingham for the Logos Lecture Series. Dr. House will present on “The Jesus Who Never Lived: False Christs and the Authentic Jesus.”

Ever since Jesus came to earth there has been a variety of ways in which He has been understood by those who have supposedly been His followers and by others who have had only a curiosity about Him. Some early Jews viewed Him as a prophet, while some early followers considered Him only a man (Ebionites), not a man at all (Gnostics) or a lesser god than the Father (Arians). Later Islam embraced Jesus as one of their prophets, and eastern mystics have considered Him as a guru. Since the enlightenment there have been four historical quests to discover the real Jesus, one who is only human in contrast to the voice of the orthodox church since its earliest days. Contemporary liberal scholars, news pundits, and Hollywood have had many opinions about Jesus, all different from how Jesus is presented in the earliest historical records of the Gospels and eyewitness accounts of those who walked with Him.

The purpose of this talk is to explain what has been said about Jesus over the centuries, particularly in the popular culture and press, why the picture of Jesus has emerged from various groups and people, and how we should best understand Jesus as He really was from the best evidence that we have about Him from those who knew Him.

Dr. H. Wayne House has authored or edited 30 books from publishers such as Zondervan, Thomas Nelson, and Kregel. He is the New Testament editor of the Nelson Study Bible and Nelson Illustrated Bible Commentary.

Please join us tonight at Bellingham’s Mount Baker Theatre at 7-8:30 PM. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Logos Lecture Series Video

In the famous words of Mick Jagger, “You can’t always get what you want.” At Logos we take every chance we can get to disprove the wrinkly rocker. That’s why we have heeded your requests to make available the most recent installment in the Logos Lecture Series.

Click here to watch Dr. Michael Heiser’s presentation, “The Concept of a Godhead in the Old Testament.”Podcast (24.4 MB)Audio Only (29.7 MB MP3)

For those of you in the Pacific Northwest, be sure to check the Lecture Series web page regularly for updates on future lectures.

Sign up now for BibleTech 2008!

Now is the time! Registration is live for BibleTech 2008, January 25-26, 2008, in Seattle!
We’ve got a variety of speakers addressing all kinds of topics at the intersection of the Bible and technology. We’ll be looking at digital Bible maps, online education, open source projects, web-based language tools, and Bible-reference micro-formats for marking up HTML.
Pastor, programmer, or professor, there’s something for you at BibleTech!
More importantly, we’ve got a great group of people showing up. As interesting as many of the sessions sound, I am even more excited about spending two days meeting and talking with people who share my interest in the Bible and technology. I hope you’ll come and be part of it.
We have tried to make BibleTech 2008 as easy to attend as possible. We’re holding it literally across the street from the SeaTac airport, so you don’t need a car or taxi; you can walk. We’re also pricing the tickets at a “covers costs” level. (Your ticket includes three conference meals, coffee breaks, etc.)
Tickets for BibleTech 2008 are being sold through the Logos Pre-Pub system, so that we can get a head-count in advance. You can pre-order your ticket now without being charged until December.
And please don’t forget to blog about BibleTech 2008. Sadly, not everyone reads the Logos Blog, and we need your help to get the word out!
(Note to bloggers: If youblog about the BibleTech conference, consider using the “bibletech08″ tag so that posts about the conference are easy to find in Technorati and others. Thanks!)

The Concept of the Godhead in the Old Testament

Tonight’s edition of the Logos Lecture Series features Dr. Michael Hesier, academic editor at Logos. Dr. Heiser will discuss “The Concept of the Godhead in the Old Testament” at 7:00 PM at Mount Baker Theatre in Bellingham, WA.

Dr. Heiser provided this summary of his lecture:

As both extrabiblical historical sources and the New Testament book of Acts informs us, Christianity arose from Judaism. Jesus of Nazareth was a Jew. The apostles and first followers of Jesus were Jews. How is it then, that on one hand, God-fearing Jews, whose holy Scriptures affirmed that there was only one God, could worship both the God of the Bible and Jesus as God? How could any Jew reconcile worship of Jesus with monotheism? And how is it that Jewish Christians were simultaneously willing to suffer death at the hands of the Roman Empire rather than deny monotheism? Rather than consider first century Jews as religiously confused or closet polytheists, as many scholars today would contend, the answers to these questions are found in the Old Testament, which reveals the ancient faith of Israel contained the idea of a godhead long before its expression in the New Testament.

This same topic was the subject of Dr. Heiser’s Ph.D. dissertation at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He will approach the subject with an advanced understanding of the original languages of the Bible, which will help uncover some fascinating intricacies in the Old Testament.

Logos in Guatemala

Guillermo Powell, Logos’ International Director for Spanish Products,recently returned from Guatemala, where he spent an entire week presenting Logos in several seminaries, including radio and TV interviews. Latin American countries are quickly catching up with technology, and as economies improve, even pastors and some students can afford our libraries. Logos’ Spanish Department has been working hard to spread the word about our ground-breaking new products – created specifically for the Spanish speaking Bible student.

In February of this year Logos introduced three brand new versions of the program. This releasemore than quadrupled the number of Spanish books available in Libronix format. The Biblioteca Pastoral represents a huge step for the Spanish world. The number of resources included in the collection has recently jumped from 40 to 143. This is pretty amazing when you consider that NO other Bible software company has more than a few Spanish books. Just take one look at the impressive resource list and you don’t have to speak Spanish to realize that this collection was just given a major overhaul.

Of the 110 new books in the Biblioteca Pastoral, the standout resource is undoubtedly the new Spanish-Greek and Spanish-Hebrew Reverse Interlinears. Spanish speakers can now do the same type of research into the original languages that English pastors have been able to do since the release of Logos Bible Software 3.

One of the other newly revised collections is the Biblioteca Académica Bilingüe, which was expanded from 70 to more than210 books. The exciting aspect of this library is that, for the first time, many Spanish pastors can afford a digital library that is larger than their current print library.

The third of these new Spanish collections is completely dedicated to missions. La Biblioteca Digital de la Misión has 40 titles that focus on missions (both foreign and local), church planting, and support for missionaries. All this is done from a uniquely Latin American perspective.

English speaking readers might be thinking, “This is all exciting stuff, but how doesit affect me?” Guillermoencourages, “American churches that support missionaries in Spanish speaking countries should consider giving their missionaries these unique libraries. Just the savings in shipping books, pays forthe Bilingual library!”

The Lost Tomb of King David

What have archaeologists and biblical scholars recently learned about the location of King David’s tomb? What are some misconceptions about the tomb’s whereabouts? What implications would a discovery of such magnitude have on the Christian faith?

David Sielaff will be driving up to Bellingham from Portland, Oregon to address those questions in tonight’s lecture The Lost Tomb of King David. David Sielaff has been the Director of the Associates for Scriptural Knowledge since 2002. The mission of ASK is to strengthen the faith of Bible believers through education and improved understanding of biblical themes. Much like Logos, ASK places special emphasis on studying original documents and primary sources.

Tonight’s event will be the seventh lecture in Logos’ continuing Lecture Series. The lecture will begin at 7:00 PM at Mount Baker Theatre. As with each previous event, The Lost Tomb of King David is free to attend and open to the public.

For those who are not able to attend the lecture, an extended version of it can be found in MP3 format at the Associates for Scriptural Knowledge website. In addition to this lecture, the ASK website has dozens more audio presentations, articles and commentaries. This is one website that should definitely be bookmarked by every pastor and student of the Bible.

For those who live within driving distance of Bellingham, we hope to see you there!

Happy Trails, Daniel Foster

A key member of the Logos Blog team has packed up his keyboard and headed east, to live near family. Daniel Foster was a regular contributor to this blog and his wide variety of posts displayed extraordinary versatility and knowledge of biblical studies and technology.

Two years ago Daniel introduced himself to the blogosphere and since then he has contributed an amazing 241 posts. For those who wonder what he’ll be doing with his newfound spare time after his retirement from blogging, much of it will be filled taking care of his soon-to-be-born third daughter (also known as Foster 3.0 around the office).

Daniel was always a stickler for quality and grammatical correctness, but here are a few of his more memorable posts:

If you are interested in filling Daniel’s shoes check out www.logos.com/jobs and fill out the ‘application’.

Also, feel free to comment on this blog article to show your appreciation for Daniel’s hard work on the Logos Blog.

More on Verse Mapping

Vincent’s post about mapping outand harmonizing all the variousbook-chapter-verse schemes for the Bible has sparked some great discussion among other bloggers. Here are a few selections; click through on the links to read the complete posts at each site…

ESV Bible Blog – “They plan to use the data in the next version of their software to allow for a ‘higher degree of precision when it comes to Bible navigation, comparing Bible versions and viewing them in parallel, and Bible reference tagging.’ The amount of effort put into this project boggles the mind.”

The folks at Crossway also point to a series of posts by blogger Ben C. Smith, who is working his way through a detailed description of thevarious canonical lists assembled by the early church. Interesting stuff which has a bearing on the Bible we read today.

Randy McRobertsofThe Upward Way Presswrites,

“Most people know that the chapter and verse divisions of the Bible aren’t part of the original text. Many people may not know that the versification of all Bibles is not the same. For example, if you look up a psalm in the Septuagint, it might have a different number than it does in the English Bibles. It is a very complicated situation. Particularly if your Bibles are digital.”

I’m sure Vincent would concur with this assessment. He’s been looking a little wrung out lately, and could probably use a care package. :-)

In a post entitled “Here’s Why I Believe in Logos Bible Software” (we appreciate the vote of confidence but would direct such praise to the One who truly deserves it), Benjamin Janssen writes,

“There are many good reasons why any serious Bible student should invest in, learn, and use Logos Bible Software. But here’s the best reason I can think of: the company is dedicated to getting it right. This is a Bible study software that I am confident will always be on the cutting edge of research and analysis without compromising quality, even down to chapter and verse divisions.”

We do work hard to stay at the cutting edge of Bible technology,and are taking steps topromote a healthy “give and take” with others in the industry.The BibleTech 2008 conferencein January will be a great opportunity for all those who work at the intersection of Bible and technology to share best practices and spur one another on to even greater levels of excellence.

If things like XML versification maps get you excited, you definitely need to be at the conference!