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5 Reasons the Perseus Project Is Incredible

Last month we announced the release of nearly 1,500 resources in the Perseus Collection—for free. In case you were wondering why you should bother downloading such a large addition to your library, we’ve compiled five reasons why Perseus is incredible:

  1. Educational Value:
    C. S. Lewis said, “Literature adds to reality, it does not simply describe it. It enriches the necessary competencies that daily life requires and provides; and in this respect, it irrigates the deserts that our lives have already become.”Familiarity with the classics of Greek and Roman literature has often been a hallmark of a well-rounded education. Equally important is knowledge of one’s own history and culture. With the seven bundles included in our Perseus Collection, you can browse 340 volumes on 19th century American history, 22 volumes on the Renaissance, and even read hundreds of Greek and Latin classics such as Aristotle, Epictates, Plutarch, Homer, and many more.
  2. English Translations
    In the Perseus Classics Collection we not only have a world class collection of Greek and Latin literature, but we have dozens of English translations as well. So don’t worry if you can’t read Sophocles in the original Greek. We’ve got you covered.
  3. Dictionaries and Lexicons
    Greek and Latin lemmas are tagged in hundreds of resources. With the click of a button, you can access dictionaries and lexicons in an instant. The Greek is morphologically tagged allowing you to perform advanced searches and Bible word studies right from your copy of Aristotle or Herodotus.
  4. Textual Searching
    Believe it or not, adding hundreds of Greek classics to your library can seriously enhance your Bible study. Take Acts 18:13 for example:

    “This man is persuading [ἀναπείθω] people to worship God contrary to the law.”

    This word, anapeitho, occurs only once in the entire New Testament. It is helpful to have a word occur multiple times to enable translators to give it the correct meaning from context. With more data, it is much easier to determine the intended meaning.

    Just by adding the Perseus Classics Collection to your library, you will not only find the one occurrence in the New Testament, but another 191 occurrences of this word being used in classical Greek literature.

    If you really want to dig into the Greek New Testament and experience the words used in another cultural context, you are going to love the Perseus Classics Collection paired with Logos Bible Software.

  5. It’s free!
    Let’s be honest, isn’t this a great reason? We know you will enjoy these resources as much as we do, and we are thrilled to be offering them for free!

This is groundbreaking stuff, so share the news! Pass it along via your favorite social media platform, then browse to the Perseus Collection page and pre-order now!

Leave us a comment and tell us what Perseus collection you are most excited about!

Recommended Commentaries: Genesis

If you do a faceted search for commentaries on Logos.com, you will find nearly 100 pages of resources. Among those you will find some of the best commentaries ever written! But what if you are looking for a solid commentary on a specific book of the Bible? It can get overwhelming when you are looking for the right tool to purchase for the study or sermon series you are working on. Where do you even begin?

The Recommended Commentary Series

Logos Talk wants to help you find the best commentaries for your needs. The Recommended Commentary Series will be a regular column highlighting some favorite commentaries by Logos academics and the user community.

We want to hear from you!

Each week we will post a forum thread asking which commentaries, available from Logos, are your favorites for a specific book in the Bible. This is a great opportunity to let other Logos users know which commentaries you have found valuable in your studies.

Genesis Commentaries

We asked Michael Heiser, resident scholar and academic editor for Logos Bible Software, to give us his favorite commentaries on Genesis. Here are a few of his choices in no particular order:

Commentaries in Collections

Single Volume Commentaries

Logos Community Favorites

Here are a few commentaries suggested by Logos users:

Do you have a favorite Logos resource on Genesis which isn’t listed here? Leave us a comment. Then jump over to the forum and share your favorite commentaries on Exodus!

* The 40-volume New International Commentary on the Old and New Testament Back-To-School Sale ends Monday, September 12, at midnight! This is the lowest price in years and, if you act fast, you can still get it for $88 per month with a payment plan! Enter coupon code BACKTOSCHOOL at checkout to get the special price.

Upgrade Discounts End Soon!

We’ve been running some sort of upgrade discount ever since the launch of Logos 4 back in November 2009. As not all good things can last forever, you have three weeks to take advantage of base package upgrades. Special upgrade discounts end September 30, 2011!

Don’t Wait Any Longer

If you’ve been considering upgrading your Logos 4 base package to a higher base package level, or even if you are still using Logos 3, this is your last chance to save money on your upgrade!

Act before the discounts expire and you could save as much as $630.00 on your upgrade! With all the new content you’ll get, your upgrade price will be cheaper than if you were to get just one or two titles by themselves.

But no matter which package you upgrade to, the bottom line is that you’ll pay less if you upgrade by September 30, 2011. If you wait, you’ll pay more—up to $630.00 more. It’s that simple.

See your personalize upgrade discount now!

7 Reasons for Upgrading Now

Besides the limited-time discounts and savings, there are lots of other great reasons to upgrade. Here are just a few:

  • Add up to hundreds of new books to your digital library for pennies on the dollar
  • Improved passage guides, word study guides, exegetical guides, reports, and search results
  • Powerful new tools, features, databases, and more if upgrading from a lower base package level
  • A customized upgrade discount based on your current package level
  • No need to reinstall. After you upgrade, the next time you sign in to Logos, you’ll automatically start downloading the new content
  • Syncing between home, office, mobile devices, and the web
  • An interest-free payment plan to help stay within your budget

Best of all, upgrading before the discounts expire will save you money. Just remember, the higher you upgrade, the deeper your discount.

See What You’ll Get—And What You’ll Save

Compare contents and discounts side by side and get the one that’s right for you!

Take Advantage of Our Payment Plan

Did you know you can use a payment plan to spread your payments out over 12 months? This is great for parents or students, or for pastors with a monthly book budget. If you’re considering upgrading soon anyway, this is a great way to get the discount now while not having to spend beyond what you can afford.

Find out what discounts you qualify for and use our interest-free payment plan option during checkout by upgrading now!

If we can help answer any questions, please don’t hesitate to call us at (800) 875-6467 or (360) 527-1700. Just call us before the current deals expire!

For those who have recently upgraded, what reason for upgrading was the most compelling? Leave us a comment so others can hear from you!

Get Hasting’s Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics on Community Pricing

For nearly fifteen years I have tried—without success—to get people interested in Hasting’s Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics.

It began when I was cornered at a conference by a pair of seminary professors who marveled that we had neglected a Logos edition of Hastings’ Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics. I went online and purchased a print edition and started to use it myself with great enjoyment. Since then I have placed this set on and off Pre-Pub a number of times without success—yet I keep trying.

It is one of the finest reference sets produced in the last century. It is still one of the most quoted reference sets in the field of religion and biblical studies to this day. Over the years, many scholars and professors have commented on the many articles in this series which are addressed in no other reference work. It is a popular goto series for our own writers and researchers.

Why won’t this set make it through Pre-Pub? One problem is that the series has always been a library resource. Not that many private copies were ever sold. With a retail value of nearly $800, it has been out of reach for all but the most ardent enthusiasts. Perhaps, together, we can bring this fine work within reach of everyone.

I know you are probably not interested in spending $800 for a collection you have never heard of, but maybe you would be interested at $20, $30, or $40. I know I would. Help us save this set for future generations. Take the opportunity to bid for this set for pennies on the dollar.

Community Pricing ensures you will never pay an amount higher than your bid and you may even win the opportunity to purchase at a lower price if enough people participate. The only way to lose out is to bid lower than the final price that covers production costs.

With Hastings’ Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics (13 vols.) available on your ipod, Iphone, iPad, or Android device—you could be a walking encyclopedia yourself!

10 Pre-Pubs for Your Old Testament Studies

We recently shared some suggestions for finding bargains on Logos.com. One suggestion was to keep your eye on the Pre-Pub page, a valuable place to get new resources at a fantastic price.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of Old Testament resources available on Pre-Pub. We wanted to highlight a few which—if you act fast—you can purchase before they go into development.

  1. Fortress Press Hebrew Bible Collection (11 vols.)
  2. Isaiah 40–66: A Commentary
  3. Library of Hebrew Bible/OT Studies: JSOTS on Nevi’im (7 vols.)
  4. Library of Hebrew Bible/OT Studies: JSOTS Old Testament Monographs (7 vols.)
  5. Studies in Old Testament Themes (6 vols.)
  6. Old Testament Hermeneutics Collection (18 vols.)
  7. History of Old Testament Interpretation Collection (14 vols.)
  8. Studies on Esther (4 vols.)
  9. Studies on Joshua Collection (3 vols.)
  10. Studies on Zechariah (4 vols.)

Take advantage of these Pre-Pub prices soon. It will only take a few more orders to kick most of these items into production!

Leave us a comment and let us know which of these Pre-Pubs you would love to add to your library!

What You Could Be Missing: See NICOT/NT in Logos for Yourself!

You still have a little more time to get the 40-volume New International Commentary at a discount. But don’t wait—the Back-to-School Sale ends soon. Enter coupon code BACKTOSCHOOL at checkout to see the special price. Download it now!

Gary Thomas Discusses The Glorious Pursuit

“For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.”—Romans 8:29 (ESV)

This has been a favorite verse of mine for years. I have always loved the idea of being molded and formed into the image and character of Christ. But the inherent challenge here is in making sure we are not frustrating this work while doing what we can to be pliable.

Gary Thomas has been a mentor to me for some time in this area. His writings have instilled in me an insatiable desire to not only focus on building the character of Christ within me, but to understand how Christians have practiced spiritual formation in the past.

When I saw that Logos was carrying Thomas’ The Glorious Pursuit: Embracing the Virtues of Christ, I jumped at an opportunity to ask him some questions about this fantastic book on Christian virtues.

Logos: It has been a while since you penned The Glorious Pursuit. What do you remember about the process?

Thomas: I was approached by NavPress to write a book for a series they were doing on forgotten or neglected ancient spiritual practices. Practicing the virtues was a mainstay for many centuries of church history, and we felt it would be equally helpful and relevant for Christians to reclaim this practice today. So much of contemporary Christian teaching focuses on “not sinning.” I was eager to write a book focusing on something positive—what we can become. Instead of obsessing over becoming “unlike the devil” I believe Scripture calls us to focus on becoming like Christ.

Logos: You discuss 14 classical virtues (humility, surrender, detachment, love, chastity, generosity, vigilance, patience, discernment, thankfulness, gentleness, fortitude, obedience, and penitence), which of those did you find was the most challenging to write about?

Thomas: There’s a reason I had to use two chapters to fully cover humility. It’s been called the “queen of the virtues” and rightly so. It’s the hardest one to live out, in many ways, and yet the foundation for so much that follows (along with love, of course).

Another particularly challenging one was detachment, since that’s such a foreign concept to contemporary believers. We just don’t think in those terms, yet doing so can be revolutionary in a believer’s life.

Logos: One online reviewer said of The Glorious Pursuit, “This is one of the best and most helpful books I’ve ever read.” Do you often hear from people whose lives have been touched by your work?

Thomas: Just about every day, in all honesty. It’s humbling, knowing how little I know, and knowing how messed up I can be, and yet seeing how God can play some great music through rather dented instruments.

Logos: One of the endorsements for the Glorious Pursuit was by J. I. Packer. If I remember correctly, Packer also endorses your book Seeking the Face of God. Do you consider Packer a mentor?

Thomas: Absolutely. He was my thesis advisor, and small group advisor during one year at Regent College, so I got to spend some time with him, including in his home. I admire Dr. Packer’s courage, fidelity to Scripture, and passion for the Gospel. Even in his later years, he is passionate about seeing God’s church move forward. Time with him (I got to visit with him again about 2 years ago when I was up in Canada) is always tremendously inspiring for me.

At a theological level, I especially appreciate Packer’s ability as a “fair” critic. When he challenges another tradition with which he has disagreements, he’ll point out its strengths and what the church at large can learn from it, and then gently but brilliantly expose the flaws (or at least problematic tendencies). I’ve tried to emulate that approach, drawing on the strengths of a wide range of traditions without rejecting them in total, while still staying true to a rather conservative theological (and I think biblical) perspective.

Logos: In what ways have you heard about The Glorious Pursuit being used in group settings?

Thomas: It’s been used by weight loss groups, prison chaplains, men’s groups, and women’s Bible studies. What I hear back from these participants is that they appreciate the positive focus—looking at what we can become, rather than obsessing over what we should avoid.

Logos: What would you say to someone who has picked up a copy of The Glorious Pursuit and is starting their journey toward practicing Christian virtues?

Thomas: Take the chapter on gentleness to heart, and be gentle with yourself. This is a lifelong journey. The more I understand about the physiology of our brain, the more brilliant I believe this ancient practice is. It takes time to create new neurological grooves and therefore moral habits. We have to consciously choose our focus, put it into practice, and wait until it becomes sort of like second nature, though in this case, it’s a supernaturally empowered redeemed nature.

The Glorious Pursuit is not only a fantastic personal resource, it is valuable for discipleship and small groups as well. I can personally attest to using this book in a variety of settings and its rich content always helps foster deep, engaging, and transparent discussion.

Order a copy of The Glorious Pursuit today and get it while it’s still on Pre-Pub!

For more information about Gary Thomas, visit GaryThomas.com or follow him on Twitter.

Have you read The Glorious Pursuit? Leave us a comment and tell us what you thought.

New International Commentary: Get the Lowest Price in Years During the Back-to-School Sale

The New International Commentary on the Old and New Testament

The New International Commentary is a prestigious commentary set with some of the biggest names in biblical scholarship. Now you can get it at a phenomenal price, just in time for school.

This commentary is one of the most respected commentary series published in the evangelical Protestant tradition. It is thoroughly researched and abreast of modern biblical scholarship, yet at the same time loyal to Scripture as the infallible Word of God.

Many of the volumes in this series have become classic works of evangelical biblical scholarship in their own right. In particular:

In fact, Christianity Today called Morris’ commentary on John “the best commentary on any book of the Bible by an evangelical in recent decades.”

This set is listed at $1,898.00, and the price you’ll see on the website right now is $1,599.95. During the Back-to-School sale, you can get the 40-volume New International Commentary for only $999.95. Simply enter coupon code BACKTOSCHOOL at checkout to see the special price.

Access a Scholarly Standard

The NIC is not only a standard commentary for pastors, but it has become a go-to resource in biblical scholarship.  The commentaries in this series contain original research and are regularly cited in other academic works. That has made the NIC a fixture of classroom syllabi in seminaries and Bible schools worldwide. So it was an easy decision to feature the NIC in this year’s back-to-school sale.

How to Use Your Monthly Book Budget to Get the NIC at This Price

We’ve created interest-free payment plans to let you apply a portion of your monthly book budget to the NIC. That lets you take advantage of the sale price before it expires and add the 40-volume NIC to your library today.

For example, you’ll pay only $88 per month with a 12-month plan. You get the benefits of the NIC today—all the extra volumes in your library, plus the value of using it for sermon preparation, study, and more—but you can use your book budget to pay for it over the next 12 months. Remember, you don’t pay interest, just a $5 processing fee to cover the extra expenses we incur by offering the plan.

To get the NIC for only $88 a month for 12 months, simply select the Payment Plan option at checkout.

Only 2 Weeks to Save!

The Back-to-School sale ends on September 12, 2011. Place your order today to get it at the special discounted price! And don’t forget to enter coupon code BACKTOSCHOOL at checkout to take advantage of the discount.

Dean Deppe Talks Exegesis with Logos Talk: Part II

Yesterday we featured part one of a two-part discussion with Dean Deppe, Professor of New Testament at Calvin Theological Seminary. In part one, Deppe discussed the exegetical methods he promotes in his book All Roads Lead to the Text: Eight Methods of Inquiry into the Bible. Today, in part two of our interview, Deppe shares how Logos Bible Software factors into his process for biblical interpretation.

Logos: What about All Roads Lead to the Text would be of particular interest to Logos users?

Deppe: At Calvin Seminary we require the use of Logos Bible Software for every student, and we have an entire course in the curriculum which teaches students how to use the software. We believe the tools Logos supplies motivate pastors and preachers to continue to do a thorough job of exegesis—including the use of the original languages of Hebrew and Greek. In addition, I know that Logos is interested in how the software is employed in the classroom, so throughout the book I demonstrate how to use the software in exegesis. Since Bible software is becoming more important for research and analysis, many of the exegetical examples demonstrate how to employ Logos Bible Software to attain quick and accurate results.

Logos: Wow, that’s great! How do you use Logos Bible Software for exegesis?

Deppe: I talk about three main ways I use Logos for exegesis:

  1. I introduce tools developed by Logos which make exegesis easier, quicker, and more fun. For instance, when I discuss the importance of establishing the contours of a pericope, I demonstrate from the “Compare Pericopes” tool. In the chapter on structure I use the Lexham Clausal Outlines of the Greek NT and the Lexham Syntactic Greek NT  [both available in Scholar's Library and higher]. In the chapter on grammar I demonstrate the value of visual filters. When I discuss translations, I teach the reader how to construct a layout of all the major Bible translations that you can easily return to on a regular basis.
  2. I recommend works from Logos which you can add to the base packages for greater research ability. In the chapter on historical background, I suggest a collection of Bible dictionaries and demonstrate how to set up a collection of resources to search for information.
  3. I perform specific basic, Bible, and morphological searches using the software to demonstrate the exegetical process.

Logos: Can you give us an example how Logos Bible Software is used on a specific text?

Deppe: Sure! For instance, the colorful nuances of the Greek noun καταρτισμὸν for “equipping” the saints in Ephesians 4:12 are difficult to determine, since this word occurs only here in the Greek Bible.

But other searches in Logos Bible Software can uncover similar roots. If one attempts a morphological search in the NIV or ESV by choosing Logos Greek Morphology and typing in g:katarti (g for Greek and katarti as the root of words connected to “equip”), several interesting references to the Greek verb καταρτίζω are revealed.

Such passages include Matthew 4:21; 1 Corinthians 1:10; and Luke 6:40 which throw light on the meaning of “equip.”

  • In Jesus’ calling of James and John to discipleship in Matthew 4:21, this Greek word contains the imagery of repairing nets implying that “equipping the saints” means repairing people’s lives.
  • 1 Corinthians 1:10 employs the additional imagery of reconciling two conflicting parties.
  • Finally, Luke 6:40 describes modeling behavior so that the training of the saints implies a process whereby the student resembles the teacher.

Therefore to equip the saints encompasses:

  • repairing people’s lives,
  • training them in conflict management, and
  • modeling Christ-like behavior.

A search in Logos supplies some interesting pictures!

Or another example where you search your various Bible dictionaries quickly without taking them down from the shelf and attempting to find the correct page. Automatically, while studying Mark 6:11 about shaking off the dust of your feet, Logos Bible Software will bring up all references in your collection of Bible dictionaries.

Here’s what I mean:

  • Harper’s Bible Dictionary calls attention to the importance of hospitality in Jewish culture.
  • The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery goes further and demonstrates that this action also signifies divine judgment. Human disdain of God’s servants has aroused God’s righteous anger.
  • But continuing to search you discover The Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament which describes shaking the dust off your feet as a gesture that is practiced after leaving Gentile territory. Normally, Jews shake off the dust when they exit pagan territory; however, now the disciples are treating their fellow Jews as pagans when they do not accept the gospel message of Jesus. Jesus is creating a new family and nation that is bound together by faith and not blood.

As you can see, a quick search like this supplies a plethora of meaning to this Jewish gesture.

Logos: How do you envision your book being used?

Deppe: This book is aimed at seminary students, pastors and preachers, and educated lay people who desire to read the Bible In addition, it can be used for small group study and additional research through the discussion questions at the end of each chapter.

Logos: How do you think All Roads Lead to the Text will appeal to other biblical professors?

Deppe: For one thing, it offers a great teaching method for students and can be employed as a textbook. But the appendixes contain some vital material not found together anywhere else. I include a morphology of genre which describes the various sub-genre in Scripture and add a succinct list the principles of interpretation for the main scriptural genres. Specifically, I describe in detail all the controversy dialogues in the Gospel of Mark and then offer an analysis of how literary devices are employed for organizational purposes in the Bible. This material should be stimulating to the academy.

Logos:  What tools from Logos Bible Software do you think are the most helpful for the average pastor or teacher?

Deppe: I use lots of tools. These are some of the tools I find most helpful:
  • I employ the layouts every day. Instantly I can set up a study a NT grid with the Greek text and all the major Bible versions in my purview. I have layouts for the Apostolic Fathers in Greek and English, Philo’s writings, the Dead Sea Scrolls, Josephus’ writings, and the Pseudepigrapha.
  • While I am studying a particular text, I can call up a commentary, and it automatically proceeds to the passage I am examining. What a time-saver!
  • Since we live in a visual age, I love the visual filters which let me color code the tenses of the verbs, for instance.
  • With Logos I also have my own concordance and can easily search various texts.
  • Word studies have always been important in preparing Bible studies and sermons.
  • I also frequently use the Bible Word Study and Exegetical Guide. Both are easy to work with and comprehensive in Logos.

I have pastors email me every month and thanks us for the training we have given them in Logos Bible Software at Calvin Theological Seminary.

We want to thank Dean Deppe for taking time to talk to us! Make sure to check out All Roads Lead to the Text: Eight Methods of Inquiry into the Bible while it is on Pre-Pub!

Tell us how Logos Bible Software helps you do exegesis.

Dean Deppe Talks Exegesis with Logos Talk: Part I

The Bible can be a difficult book to interpret. Churches split over the interpretation of controversial texts, and many Bible readers feel bewildered about tough passages of Scripture.

To help clarify and outline various methods of exegesis and interpretation, Dean Deppe, Professor of New Testament at Calvin Theological Seminary, has written All Roads Lead to the Text: Eight Methods of Inquiry into the Bible, currently on Pre-Pub.

In a way, this is a book designed for Logos users. Deppe an avid Logos user himself (he used Logos Bible Software as he wrote the book), and All Roads contains numerous examples of how to use Logos for exegesis and interpretation. So not only is this book vitally important for general readers, but it is especially beneficial for Logos users who are serious about understanding the text.

We were excited when Dr. Deppe took time out of his busy schedule to talk to us about All Roads Lead to the Text: Eight Methods of Inquiry into the Bible. What follows is the first half of a 2-part discussion.

Logos: Why did you write All Roads Lead to the Text?

Deppe: Interpreting the Bible can be frustratingly difficult for the average person. The eight chapters in this book equip the average reader with the methods scholars employ to interpret this historic book. The goal is that the reader will conclude at the end, “I too can read the Bible.”

Logos: How do you equip the reader to interpret the Bible?

Deppe: The book All Roads Lead to the Text functions as a template for model exegesis through an examination of:

  • grammar,
  • literary devices,
  • structure,
  • context,
  • historical and cultural background,
  • the history of interpretation, and
  • the exegete’s presuppositions for interpretation.

So really it is a book about exegetical methodology or hermeneutics.

What sets this volume apart from all others is the continuous use of biblical examples rather than an explanation of exegetical methods. Furthermore, I employ Logos Bible Software as I explore these biblical examples, so that students can perform their research more quickly and do not have to be close to a theological library.

All Roads Lead to the Text

Logos: You describe the book as a template for exegesis. How do you teach the process of exegesis?

Deppe: The best teaching methods employ memorable pictures. This volume compares the exegetical process to the use of various types of camera lenses so the reader perceives in a new way the importance of grammar, context, literary genre, historical background, structural analysis, and the history of interpretation.

Logos: Describe for us the flow of the book and the exegetical methods you employ.

Deppe: To fully understand the biblical text, we must place more than one lens on our exegetical camera.

The literary analysis of chapter one involves the employment of an infra-red lens to investigate what cannot always be seen in natural light. I demonstrate how the identification of unspecified genre and literary devices affect the final interpretation of a passage.

For grammatical exegesis in chapter two we employ an exegetical microscope which scrutinizes the details of a passage from words, to phrases, to clauses until we arrive at various translations of the text.

In chapter three we take a skeleton snapshot of the text so that we can envision the structure of the passage through developing a clausal outline.

Then, in chapter four, we avail ourselves of a wide-angled lens to probe the context before and after a particular pericope in chapter four.

In chapter five we utilize a telescopic lens and explore the world behind the text by inspecting the cultural and historical background.

Then, in chapter six, we roll out the motion picture exegetical camera in chapter seven to study the various periods of church history and to investigate how an examination of the major commentaries benefits our exegesis.

Next to last, chapter seven develops the finished photo through a theological analysis of the text and an exploration of the canonical meaning.

Finally, in chapter eight, we do not want to forget to explore the world in front of the text by an investigation of the reader’s presuppositions. We need to take an x-ray picture of ourselves so that we don’t subconsciously deceive ourselves and read our unexamined presuppositions into the text. Here I describe seven spiritual exercises and disciplines that enable us to apply the text to contemporary life.

These exegetical camera shots form a sample album of proofs that offer snapshots of the text from various angles. We discover that all roads lead to the text as the title of the book says.

Logos: What makes this book different from other books that interpret the Bible?

Deppe: What sets this volume apart from all others is the continuous use of biblical examples rather than an explanation of exegetical methods. Students and preachers want immediate application of theoretical methods. They want to know how a study of the grammar or structure of the text will make a difference. So in each chapter I include ten to twenty concrete examples of how the context or history of interpretation makes a difference in how you understand the Bible. Each description of a text consists of a couple of pages so the information is easily accessible yet sufficient in length to stimulate a good discussion.

Logos: Rarely does a volume include both scholarly exegesis along with a section on spiritual disciplines that will affect the reader in interpreting the text. What made you want to tackle these two together?

Deppe: The addition of a chapter on “Spiritual Exegesis” attempts to propose seven strategies in addition to the historical-critical method that affect interpretation and application. These spiritual disciplines include

  1. a practicing faith perspective,
  2. personalizing the text,
  3. praying Scripture,
  4. picturing concepts through meditation,
  5. listening prophetically,
  6. paradigm-building through mirroring, and
  7. imaginative application.

This x-ray of our personality, presuppositions, and spiritual makeup certifies that this whole process is not just an intellectual exercise completely separated from our life experience. Historical-critical exegesis stands at a crossroads where it must recognize and incorporate other methods into its field of vision. Our methods of interpretation must not only supply information but also personally form the reader, supply practical application, and connect the reader directly to God in deeper and more meaningful ways. That’s what I try to do in the last chapter.

Come back tomorrow for Part II of our discussion with Dean Deppe! And make sure to check out All Roads Lead to the Text: Eight Methods of Inquiry into the Bible for an opportunity to get it while it is still available at a great Pre-Pub discount.

Do you have favorite exegetical tips? Share them with us!