The Bible Is Special

BibleAlmost a decade ago I found myself on the phone with a man whose office was a hospital bed.

I had never met him before, but I had heard that he was dying of complications from pulmonary fibrosis and cancer. From what I understood, he was in a hospital bed under his doctor’s supervision, with oxygen tubes in his nose. Unlike some men around 80 with similar declining health and a restrictive lung disease, he didn’t stop talking or let his shortness of breath silence him. He was taking the time and effort to make sure he personally spoke with me, to secure my word in order to see his vision through to the end.

Most of you reading this have spent far more time ministering to and visiting with the sick than I have, and I have been moved by many stories of those under your care and in your own families finishing strong. So what makes this situation so remarkable? Personal attention to something that could have been so easily delegated.

This particular man had representatives in almost 200 countries, 25,000+ full-time employees, and more than 225,000 trained volunteers for his organization. So why was he the one on the phone? Why wasn’t I talking to his staff? What could be so special that he had to personally take the time, and endure the physical discomfort to ensure this got done himself?

Continue Reading…

Logos 4 Infographics and Attention to Detail

Calf

Today’s guest blogger is Sean Boisen, senior information architect at Logos.

The many Bible reference resources in Logos 4 contain a wealth of photographs, maps, illustrations, and other images that can enhance your study of the Bible. Some are specifically devoted to visual resources: for example, 1000 Bible Images, Images of the Holy Land, Photos from the Holy Land, and The Biblical World in Pictures. Because of the high-quality tagging which Logos performs on its resources, you can find these images using the #image operator: for example, this search,

#image “golden calf”

finds any image that’s relatively close to the words “golden calf” (most, though not all, of which are depictions of some kind of calf).

Despite all the imagery that was already part of our resources, for Logos 4 we specially commissioned more than 100 brand new, high-resolution infographics. Why did we go to all this trouble (and expense)? One reason is that many of the images from published works have copyright restrictions that restrict Logos users from copying them for teaching, presentations, handouts, etc. By creating our own collection of infographics, we have clear rights which we can then pass along to our users for their ministry and other non-commercial use (republishing them, for example, in a book, is a different matter: contact Logos about situations like that). The same is true of the Logos maps for Biblical Places: you can copy and paste them into PowerPoint or other programs that support graphics, or print them out for ministry use. In Logos 4, you can view the infographics by typing “Open Infographics” in the Command Bar.

Creating the Logos Bible Software Infographics was a significant challenge that took numerous professional artists and many months of effort to complete. In the case of images representing buildings or artifacts from Biblical history, a great deal of that work involved careful research to determine how best to depict these objects.

Here’s one example: the Golden Calf which Aaron and the Israelites constructed by melting down their jewelry (Ex. 32). The Golden Calf infographic in Logos shows a glistening figure with long horns. A Logos user wrote to us last week to ask why we hadn’t caught an obvious mistake: calves (that is, baby cows) don’t have horns!

In fact, it’s much more involved than that. Scholars differ in their opinions about the background of the calf imagery and the cultural and historical details behind the incident (which is repeated later in Israel’s history under King Jeroboam, 1 Ki 12:28-33). The Hebrew word ‘ēg̱el translated here “calf” can refer either to cattle or oxen, up to three years of age: so it’s not necessarily a “baby cow” (and some scholars think the diminutive term here might be a reference of disdain to their small size, rather than their young age).

Archaeological discoveries from the same period time include many images of bovine or ox idols from surrounding nations: many of them do in fact include horns, including the Egyptian deity Hathor and other Canaanite deities. The moon god Sı̂n was often represented as a bull, perhaps reflecting the similarity of the horns of the bull to a crescent moon. We know from historical evidence that Sı̂n was worshiped both in Ur (the likely birthplace of Abraham and Sarah) and Haran (where the Patriarchs stopped on their journey to Palestine). So there’s good historical evidence supporting the possibility that the Israelites would have been familiar with these practices and images.

Of course, we can only speculate about what the actual golden calves (both Aaron’s and Jeroboam’s) might have looked like: no one actually knows. But we worked hard to make sure any images we created for the Logos Bible Software Infographics represented solid historical evidence. In Logos 4, you can look at the Biblical Things pages for Golden Calf, as well as Jeroboam’s Golden Image at Bethel and Dan, to learn more about these artifacts.

Want to go deeper into the background of subjects like the Golden Calf? Consider stepping up to a more in-depth Bible dictionary, like the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, the Zondervan Encyclopedia of the Bible, or the Anchor Yale Bible Dictionary.

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Traveling the Bible Lands with Logos 4

Today’s guest post is by Robert Campbell, from the Logos Bible Software marketing team.

Travels

If you’ve been fortunate enough to make the pilgrimage to Israel and the surrounding Bible Lands, then you can attest to the powerful impact it can have on your spiritual life. We are privileged to live in a time when visiting scriptural landmarks is relatively easy—just Google search “visit the Bible lands” and you have access to cheap plane tickets and Bible cruises galore.

What’s fascinating about one of our latest Pre-Pubs, Travels through Bible Lands Collection (15 Vols.), is not only that these adventurous explorers didn’t have our modern luxuries of airplanes and vacation packages, but that they traveled almost blindly into a wild and unknown terrain sometimes occupied by hostile communities. Some of these expeditions took years to accomplish, and many perished during these arduous journeys.

The travelogues and memoirs contained in the Travels through Bible Lands Collection offer us a pilgrimage of a different sort. We get to experience the Bible lands through a 19th century lens, guided by the archeologists and explorers who unearthed much of Babylon or mapped the shores of the Dead Sea. Our tour is on rickety boats and horseback instead of cruise liners and tour buses. We don’t follow a map to take pictures of a scriptural landmark; we get to experience firsthand when those landmarks were discovered.

The dangerous escapades and colorful characters that permeate these works rival any blockbuster action flick or adventure novel that comes to mind, but it’s the inspirational spirit of discovery which makes these works special. These writers shared the same innate urge we all have to see the places where the events of the Bible occurred, and they risked their lives to map them out and unearth them for the rest of us. And while I hope to someday travel the lands of Jesus and his apostles with my digital camera and air conditioned accommodations, I can’t help but marvel and cherish the written accounts these trailblazers left for us.

Pick up Travels through Bible Lands Collection (15 Vols.) at nearly 70% off of the retail price and let Logos 4 transport you to the Bible lands. It promises to be an educational trip.

A Complete Guide to Understanding the Dispensationalism Controversy

Today’s guest post is by Bethany Olsen, from the Logos Bible Software marketing team.

Logos is offering a new Pre-Pub on a much-debated topic. A Complete Guide to Understanding the Dispensationalism Controversy is a thoroughly researched and detailed look at dispensationalist interpretation. Few lay out this doctrine as clearly and meticulously as author Kerry Trahan, whose years of extensive research on the topic make his book a highly indispensable resource for all.

Dispensationalism has been around since the mid-1800s, and John Nelson Darby, creator of the 1890 Darby Bible and John Darby’s Synopsis of the Books of the Bible (5 Vols.), is considered to be the founding father of this school of thought. Some of the main points regarding this topic have to do with the dispensation, or grouping, of various people throughout the history of the Bible, as well as an emphasis on eschatology and ecclesiology. This doctrine has made a controversial yet significant impact on biblical interpretation since its inception, and is well-worth taking the time to understand.

For more information on dispensationalism, there is no better resource than A Complete Guide to Understanding the Dispensationalism Controversy. You will find Trahan’s work to be invaluable while researching dispensationalism for yourself, and his research will provide a valuable point of reference for entering into relevant theological discussions or sermon preparation. Whether you are a student, teacher, minister, or are simply hoping to glean more information on this important topic, you will love Trahan’s succinct and holistic approach to dispensationalism.

This Pre-Pub is already under development, and is well on its way to becoming a permanent and informative resource in your digital library.

Also available from Logos Bible Software:

Logos 4: Automatically Search the Septuagint for a Greek Word

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Today’s post is from Morris Proctor, certified and authorized trainer for Logos Bible Software. Morris has trained thousands of Logos users at his two-day Camp Logos training seminars.

Several people have recently asked me for an easy way to search the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament) for every occurrence of a Greek lemma.

Here’s one way to do just that:

  • Open an English Bible with a Reverse Interlinear option—such as the ESV—to a New Testament passage
  • Right click on a word
  • From the right menu select Lemma “your word
  • Select Bible Word Study
  • When the Bible Word Study report opens, notice the section Septuagint Translation containing the translation ring
  • Click the Greek word in the center of the ring to see very occurrence of that Greek lemma in the Septuagint!

Happy Birthday America

signin

To help celebrate America’s independence, download Celebrate Liberty! Famous Patriotic Speeches & Sermons at almost 45% off the retail price.

Here at Logos, we pride ourselves at being a company that provides cutting edge Bible study materials to the world. When you look at all of the countries where we offer payment plans, you can see that—although we are an American based company—we have a strong international presence. In fact, we have some of the best customers on the planet!

We would love to have you join us in wishing the United States of America a happy 234th birthday on July 4! For those celebrating American independence this weekend, Logos has pulled the book Celebrate Liberty! Famous Patriotic Speeches & Sermons out of the WallBuilders American Foundations Digital Library [DVD-ROM] and we’re offering it at nearly 45% off the retail cost through July 12th!

This 256 page book offers nine of the greatest early American orations about the blessings and responsibilities of liberty from some of America’s greatest orators: John Quincy Adams, Daniel Webster, Samuel Davies, George Bancroft, Noah Webster, and others. Along with this collection of sermons and speeches comes historical glimpses and commentaries. If you are looking for a good resource, with plenty to consider and share regarding liberty and independence make sure you pick up a copy of Celebrate Liberty! Famous Patriotic Speeches & Sermons.

For those outside of the United States, leave a comment and let us know which national holidays you would like to see Logos acknowledge. We’d love to hear from you.

177 Ways To Give a Glowing Recommendation

Web Ads

Recommendations are quite powerful.

Recommendations from a trusted source are even more powerful. That’s where you come in.

By default, "word-of-mouth" is typically what we think of when we consider recommending a product or service, but these days we cannot forget to include digital recommendations. Consider how often you send an email, update your Facebook status, or how often you use Twitter. To your friends, followers, and email contacts, your positive or negative comments will go a long way to influence their decisions, especially when it comes to a product or service.

No matter which method you use to communicate, why not recommend something that could potentially transform lives?

For those of you talking about Logos via email or word-of-mouth, we hope you have only positive things to say about your experiences with us. If for some reason you aren’t comfortable giving us a glowing review, we want to take care of you right away and do what we can to make you a happy customer! Please call us at 1-800-875-6467 or email customerservice@logos.com so we can help you. If that doesn’t work, you can email our president at bob@logos.com. We want you to be taken care of!

For those of you who have a website, blog, podcast, for you to link to us is just as high a recommendation and compliment as any other. As such, we have a Logos Web Ads page with a selection of 175 web ads and 2 audio files for you to use:

Logos Bible Software 4
Would your audience benefit from Bible study software? Then take a look at our Logos Bible Software 4 web ads.

Logos Bible Software iPhone App
How about iPhone Bible software? Then use one of our Logos Bible Software iPhone App web ads.

Bible Study Magazine
Want to recommend solid Bible study tools and methods to others? Then grab one of our Bible Study Magazine web ads.

SeminaryScholarship.com and BibleCollegeScholarship.com
Is your audience college-aged, or parents of such? Consider using SeminaryScholarship.com web ads or BibleCollegeScholarship.com web ads.

RefTagger and Bible Search Bar
Finally, grab one of our RefTagger web ads and one of our Bible Search Bar web ads because what blog or website is complete without them?

As you can see, there are many different sizes and styles to choose from, so there should be something for everyone. Once you grab what you need, be sure to come back often as we frequently add content. Once you grab the code from the Logos Web Ads page and post the ad on your website or blog, please feel free to leave a link in the comment section so we can check it out!

Imagine a Christian Magazine in Every Public Library

biblestudymagazine

Our goal here at Logos is to make Bible study more accessible than ever. And now you can help!

With Bible Study Magazine, we are able to share better Bible study tips, aids, as well as thoughts about Bible study from well-loved and high profile Christians.

But, we’re not just your average Christian magazine. To quote Mr. Magazine, “Bible Study Magazine is just that: a magazine to study the Bible. Some will be quick to say, so what’s new about that? Aren’t there plenty of magazines that deal with Bible studies and such? Well, on the surface, the answer is yes, but the more I studied (no pun intended) the new magazine, the more I saw its point of difference. It is not your grandfather’s Bible study magazine.”

We want this cutting edge magazine on Bible study to make its way to your public library, to provide Bible study tips and encouragement to a wider audience than ever before. Simply stated, we want more people studying the Bible.

The public library system generally does not carry niche publications—unless people start asking for them. But Bible study is so much more than a niche. That means there’s one reason why a magazine about the Bible isn’t in libraries everywhere: we haven’t thought to ask for it yet. It’s time to take a stand.

Can our magazine go places no Christian magazine has gone before? The fact that Bible Study Magazine has been in the Whatcom County Public Library System, and now is in the Bellingham Public Library (both in Washington state) says it can!

But let’s not stop with Washington State; let’s get Bible Study Magazine into public libraries all over the nation.

It’s easy. It will take you five minutes, max. Just go to your public library’s website, and find their book request form. (They probably won’t have a periodical request form.)

Then enter this info and submit the form.


Title: Bible Study Magazine
Author: John D. Barry
Publication Date: 11/01/2008
Publisher: Logos Bible Software
ISBN (or ISSN): 1945-0923
Price: $14.95

Join us in making Bible study popular again. To find your local library’s website, click here.

Logos Bible Software 4.0d Shipping Today

A new version of Logos Bible Software for Windows is shipping today. Version 4.0d is the fourth significant update since we launched back in November. This free download brings with it a handful of new features and improvements and fixes lots of little bugs. So you’ll definitely want to make sure to update soon.

If you have automatic updating enabled (screenshot), which is the default setting, Logos 4 should notify you sometime today that updates are ready to be installed. When you see the balloon tooltip window, right-click on the Logos icon in your system tray and choose to “Install update” (screenshot). If Logos 4 hasn’t downloaded the update by the end of the day and you just can’t wait any longer to get your hands on the latest release, type Update Now into the Command Bar (screenshot). This will force Logos 4 to check for any available updates (screenshot) and begin downloading them.

Important Note: Installing Logos 4.0d will start a complete reindexing of your resources. So you might want to wait to install the update until you have some free time.

What’s New in 4.0d?

There are far too many changes in 4.0d to list. Here are some of the most important ones:

  • Using our new COM API, other programs can now talk back and forth with Logos 4 to do some pretty cool things.
  • You are able to link directly to guides, reports, searches, and other parts of the software, not just to resources as in previous versions.
  • Clippings, Information, and Text Comparison tools can be exported.
  • Clippings can be reordered by drag and drop.
  • The Scan DVD command will display an option for all connected CD/DVD-ROM drives containing media (e.g., “Scan D:\”).
  • Passages can be added to a passage list from the clipboard.

To see a complete list of the changes in 4.0d, check out the support article “What’s New in Logos 4.0d.”

Time to Upgrade to Logos 4?

Are you still running Logos 3 (or the old Logos Library System!)? If so, now would be a great time to upgrade to Logos 4. It’s had nearly eight months of extensive testing by thousands of users, and our team of developers has been fixing bugs, listening to user feedback, and adding some really cool new features. There’s a lot more still planned. To see some of what’s coming, check out the list of additional features we plan to add.

What about Logos 4 for Mac?

The Mac version is getting really close. Yesterday we released Alpha 23. Now that nearly all of the features of the Windows version have made it in to the Mac version, there might be a beta around the corner. Those of you who’ve been holding off while it was still in alpha testing may want to consider jumping in during the beta phase. Remember, you can safely use both Logos for Mac 1.2.2 and Logos 4 for Mac side by side. If you’re ready to help us test it, you can either upgrade your base package or download the core engine and start contributing in the Logos 4 for Mac forum.

Logos 4: Set Your Calendar Devotional for the Home Page

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Today’s post is from Morris Proctor, certified and authorized trainer for Logos Bible Software. Morris has trained thousands of Logos users at his two-day Camp Logos training seminars.

You’ve probably noticed in the main body of your Logos 4 Home page, Today’s Reading from a calendar devotional appears. Did you know that you can pick which devotional appears?

Here’s how:

  • Click the Library icon (book) in the upper left corner of the program
  • Select Prioritize in the upper right corner of Library pane
  • In the Library’s Find box, enter this text: type:calendar to display all of your calendar devotionals
  • Drag and drop the devotional you want on the Home page to the Prefer these resources list in the right hand pane