Help Us Decide What to Put on Pre-Pub

Our Pre-Pub system let’s you decide which resources make it into production and which ones don’t—or at least which one’s make it sooner than other.

It works quite well for the most part. But for the Pre-Pubs that don’t generate sufficient interest in a reasonable amount of time, perhaps our time could have been better spent working on titles that you want to see turned into Libronix resources.

You get a say in which titles go up on Pre-Pub by submitting your requests to suggest@logos.com and posting them in the suggestions newsgroup. While those suggestions are very helpful, we can’t always license the things you want.

We’re considering another way that you can help us decide which books to Pre-Pub and which ones to pass by or put on the back burner. We’re tentatively calling it Pre-Pre-Pub. :)

Here’s how it will work. Visit the Pre-Pre-Pub page, enter your full name, and then vote on as many of the titles as you’d like. After you’re done, click the submit button at the bottom of the page. (Please vote only once.) After we’ve had enough people respond, we’ll do our best to put your recommendations into action and put up a new list.

At close to 500 titles, our first list might be a bit too large. If you move quickly, you should be able to get through it in roughly 10 minutes. Feel free to skip the ones that don’t interest you. A skip will count as a low vote. To help you navigate the list, we’ve arranged the titles in alphabetical order of the author’s last name.

Thanks for your help! As always, we welcome your feedback on how we can continue to offer you more of the books that you want.

Adding RefTagger to a WordPress Blog

WordPress Logo WordPress is one of the most popular and powerful blogging platforms. It comes in two flavors: the hosted version (i.e., WordPress.com) and the self-hosted version (i.e., WordPress.org). This tutorial addresses how to add RefTagger to a WordPress.org blog since it is currently not possible to add it to a WordPress.com blog. WordPress.com bloggers, jump to the bottom to find out how you can help to change that.

There are two ways to set up RefTagger on your WordPress.org blog: (1) use the plugin or (2) set it up manually. The plugin is the best option since it keeps the code separate from your theme, which allows you to change themes without having to reinstall the code. It also enables you to keep up to date easily with future changes and feature additions to RefTagger with WordPress’s simply one-click plugin updates. But some of you may prefer the control of the manual route or may just not know how to find your WordPress files via FTP.

So take your pick with either of the below methods.

Method 1: Using the Plugin

To use the plugin, you need FTP access to your site’s files—at least for now. With WordPress 2.7, you will be able to browse and install plugins right from the admin panel!

If you’re like me and happen to be using WordPress 2.7 Beta 2, adding a new plugin like RefTagger is amazingly easy.

  1. Simply navigate to Plugins > Add New (i.e., http://yoursite.com/wp-admin/plugin-install.php) and search for RefTagger. RefTagger should show up as the top search result.
  2. Click “Install” on the far right, and then click “Install Now” in the window that opens. It takes just a second or two to install, and then you’re taken to a screen where you can activate it.
  3. Click “Activate Plugin,” and then navigate to the RefTagger page under the Settings menu to customize it, if you’d like.

If you’re playing it safe and running WordPress 2.6.3 or earlier, here’s what you need to do to set it up.

  1. Go to http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/reftagger/, and click “Download.” Save the zip folder, and then extract the contents.
  2. Fire up your favorite FTP program. (FileZilla is a nice free option.) Then navigate to the place where you installed WordPress. It’s probably in a folder called “public_html” or “www.” Locate the “wp-content” folder, and then open it. You’ll see a “plugins” folder inside. Open it, and then copy the RefTagger.php file that you extracted from the zip folder into that folder.
  3. Log in to your WordPress admin panel, and then go to your Plugins page. Find RefTagger in the list of inactivate plugins, and then click “Activate.”
  4. Navigate to the RefTagger page under the Settings menu to customize it, if you’d like.

Method 2: Adding the Code Manually

  1. Log in to your WordPress admin panel, navigate to the “Design” page, and click on “Theme Editor.”
  2. Find your theme’s “Footer” template, and click on it to open it.
  3. Scroll to the bottom, paste the customizable RefTagger code immediately before the </body> tag, and click “Update File.”
  4. Navigate to the RefTagger page under the Settings menu to customize it, if you’d like.

WordPress.com users, are you feeling a little left out? We want to help, but there’s only so much we can do. The good folks at WordPress.com are willing to consider adding built-in support for RefTagger, but they need to see that there is enough interest. One of the things that they look at is the number of times that our plugin has been downloaded and installed. If you have friends using WordPress.org, encourage them to download and use the plugin.

Finally, a word to those of you who create WordPress themes or help churches and ministries get websites set up with WordPress: please consider adding RefTagger as a standard part of your theme or site set-up process. It’s a great way to improve the service you provide to people—at no cost to you and with very little effort.

Why Should I Worry about the Septuagint (LXX)?

I recently posted about the progress we’ve made on our The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint (LXX), but that post was primarily about our progress. It didn’t really answer the question, “Why should I worry about the Septuagint?”
Books have been written in attempts to answer that question; several are available for Logos Bible Software:

As you can see, much ink has been spilled on the topic of the importance and role of the Septuagint (LXX) in Biblical Studies. I don’t think I’ll answer the question conclusively here, but hopefully I can shed some light on it.
So, why worry about the Septuagint?
Well, for starters, virtually every Bible study method I know of—particularly those geared to students without advanced training in Greek and Hebrew—recommend the consultation of several different Bible translations when examining a passage. Did you know that the Septuagint (LXX) is the oldest translation of the Hebrew Bible that we have? So, when examining a passage in the Old Testament, it can be helpful to examine the LXX as well because it is another translation. The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint makes some of the differences between the Hebrew and LXX available through translation differences and also through notes. Used in conjunction with the Lexham Hebrew-English Interlinear Bible, with reputable commentaries on OT books, and with other English translations, The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint can be a benefit to your study.
Second, if you’re studying a New Testament passage that quotes the Old Testament, you should check out the source of that quotation. Many times, the NT author is likely using the Septuagint (LXX) and not the Hebrew Scriptures directly. This means examining the fuller context of the quote source is important to understanding how the NT author is using the passage. The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint makes this larger context more accessible, particularly to those who may have only focused on the study of Greek in the New Testament.
(An aside, the best and most comprehensive treatment of the NT’s use of the OT is Carson and Beale’s Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament, edited by D.A. Carson and G.K. Beale, available for Logos Bible Software in the Baker Hermeneutics Collection (14 vols.))
Third, if you’re studying an Old Testament passage that uses an obscure Hebrew word, looking to the Greek of the Septuagint can help in understanding what may have been in the underlying Hebrew text. This in turn can help in coming to a better understanding of the Old Testament text. Consult lexicon articles (such as those in HALOT) which also mention how these more obscure Hebrew words may have been translated in to Greek; use these as a base to track down other citations that use the Greek word in a similar manner.
The same can be said, perhaps to a greater degree, of obscure New Testament words. Examining the Septuagint use of an obscure NT word can be enlightening. Again, use a lexicon (like BDAG) which classifies senses and provides both LXX and NT citations to hunt down LXX citations to follow up on instances like this.
These are only a few reasons why the Septuagint (LXX) should play a role in one’s study of both the Old Testament and the New Testament. So what are you waiting for? Subscribe to the pre-pub, lock in your low price, and reserve your copy of The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint today!

Logos Bible Software for Mac

It’s been more than a year since we’ve shared any official news about Logos Bible Software for Mac here on the blog. We’ve intentionally been quiet because we wanted our next announcement to be more than just a minor progress report.

Well, since we’re posting with a title “Logos Bible Software for Mac,” we must have some big news. Yes, in fact, we do. We’re thrilled to announce that we’re just about there and are ready to start taking pre-orders.

Place Your Pre-Order

Those of you who have been waiting patiently can now pre-order one of our five Mac base packages.

Current Logos users who want to crossgrade and move their existing Logos Bible Software digital library over to our new Mac software can purchase the Logos Bible Software for Mac engine for only $59.95.

Special Promo

Wait! Before you buy the Mac engine, you might be interested to know that you can get it for free.

Here’s the deal. If you spend $250 or more on live products at Logos.com or over the phone (800-875-6467) in a single order during the month of November, we’ll send you the Mac engine for free as soon as it’s ready.

Find out more.

Watch the Demo!

Want to see it for yourself? Watch the demo video below.

People behind the Product: Jim Straatman

Today we continue our People behind the Product series. In this interview we meet Jim Straatman, Logos’ IT Manager. As you’ll see, Jim is an avid biker. However, what didn’t make the cut in today’s video are Jim’s mad scooter skills. A lesser known fact about the IT department is that there is a large space in the work area that is perfect for scooter races. It’s no Indy 500, but winning a few laps around the desks can earn you some serious respect. Next time you drop by our office, be sure to challenge Jim to a race.

What Should I Buy Next?

Scholar's Library: Gold (ND)The best way to get started with Logos Bible Software is to purchase one of our base packages. Not everyone has the same budget or needs, but the bigger packages are definitely the better value. For those who are serious about studying the Bible and are convinced of the value of building a digital library, there’s no better place to start than Scholar’s Gold.

But once you have your base package and are ready for more, what should you buy next?

That’s the question that a new Logos user asked in the newsgroups recently:

I bought the Scholar’s Gold edition. Can you suggest any other good resources I would want to add to it?

I use it mostly for speaking/preaching so I enjoy having lots of good commentaries.

With around 9,000 resources, it’s good to have a little guidance to find out what others consider most useful.

Several longtime Logos users responded with their recommendations. Here are some of the things that they suggested:

I’d concur with most of these recommendations and probably add the Essential IVP Reference Collection and the new Lexham Discourse Greek New Testament Bundle. I’d also point out our Top 10 lists, our Commentary product guide, and our Pre-Pub system.

What would you recommend? What are your top picks for moving beyond a base package?

Now Your Visitors Can Customize RefTagger

RefTagger Control Panel Dark Grey WideIf you manage your own website or blog and use RefTagger, you get to choose the default Bible version that is used for the tooltips and the links to Bible.Logos.com. But your readers probably don’t all have the same favorite version as you do. Wouldn’t it be cool if they could all see the Bible passages in their preferred version?

Now they can with the RefTagger control panel. Every one of your visitors gets to chose their favorite Bible version and decide whether or not they want to see the links to Libronix. All you have to do is add one of the small control panels anywhere on your site—like in your sidebar—and your readers will be able to set their own preferences. The control panel uses a cookie to remember these preferences every time they return to any page on your site.

Try It Out

The control panel is now in the sidebar here on the blog, so test it out to see how it works. Watch what it does to these Bible verses: 1 Thes 2:13; Exodus 5:5ff; Rev. 1:1-3.

Add It to Your Site

Set up is a simple, two-step process. Just click on one of the sample control panels to get the necessary code and instructions on how to add it to your site. We provide you with eight different options to choose from, but we invite you to style the control panel any way you’d like to match the look of your site.

If you have RefTagger on your site, consider adding the control panel to make RefTagger even more useful for your readers.

Spread the Word

If you frequent a site that uses RefTagger, drop the site admins a note and encourage them to add the control panel. We don’t have contact information for all of the 4,000 sites using RefTagger, so we need your help to let them know about this cool new tool.

Progress on The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint

The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint is a project that we’ve been working on for some time. This is perhaps one of the largest projects we’ve taken on, involving 29 (at present) contributors and two editors (Randall Tan, the General Editor, and David A. deSilva, the Contributing Editor). Several of the contributors have also contributed copious notes covering different text-critical, translational and lexical issues. In this first release, a 20-book portion (see book list below), there are over 6700 notes.
In tandem with the development of the interlinear portions, we have also been working on a new morphology to the Septuagint (LXX) that will accompany the interlinear.
As mentioned on the pre-pub page, our plan all along has been to release portions as they are available. Those who have been Logos customers for awhile may recall that this is how we released the Lexham Hebrew-English Interlinear Bible. There is one resource; as new portions are available the resource will be updated to include those new portions, and released on FTP. Those who have the license simply download the update to get the revised and updated resource.
I’m happy to report that we finally have our first major chunk of The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint just about ready to release. There are 20 books of the LXX included in this release. Books fall into two different categories, those in a draft status, and those in an edited status. The draft status means that by and large, the interlinear portions have been completed by the contributor but they have not yet been reviewed by the editor. The edited status means that the interlinear portions have been reviewed by the project general editor.
Books in an edited status are as follows:

  • Exodus
  • Ruth
  • Psalms
  • Additional Psalm (Psalm 151)
  • Proverbs
  • Ecclesiastes
  • Song of Solomon
  • Obadiah
  • Haggai
  • Letter of Jeremiah

The following books are in draft status:

  • Genesis
  • Numbers
  • Job
  • Jeremiah
  • Lamentations
  • Ezekiel
  • Zechariah
  • Malachi
  • Baruch
  • Psalms of Solomon

The interlinear has seven interlinear lines; these are:

  • Manuscript
  • Manuscript (Transliterated)
  • Greek Lemma
  • Greek Lemma (Transliterated)
  • Morphology
  • English Lexical Value
  • English Literal Translation

Why are there two English entries for each word? The Lexham Greek-English Interlinear Septuagint, takes advantage of its digital environment to offer multiple layers of English glosses that reflect the complexity of the Greek language structure. Like the other Lexham interlinears (Hebrew-English Bible and Greek-English NT) there are two levels of interlinear translation. The first is the English Lexical Value, which is a gloss of the lexical or dictionary form of the word. The second is the English Literal Translation, a contextually sensitive gloss of the inflected form of the word. The difference in these glosses is subtle, but powerful. The first gloss answers the question, “What does this word mean?” The second gloss answers the question, “What does this word mean here?”
The English Literal Translation line also includes a word order number, where necessary, to allow the reader to re-assemble the text in an order more friendly to English readers. The below screen capture, with only the Manuscript and English Literal Translation lines shows how helpful this can be:

One would reassemble the text as follows:

1And (then) the Lord spoke all these words, saying, 2“I am the Lord your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt, out of the house of servitude. 3There will be not to you other gods except me! (Exodus 20:1-3)

Somewhat rough, of course, but remember it is an interlinear translation. The goal is make it easier for the LXX to play a role in one’s study of the Bible, both Old Testament and New Testament.
If you haven’t subscribed to this pre-pub already, you may want to consider it sooner than later. Once the first portion ships, the pre-pub will be filled, and then the price will go up.

Last Chance—Get the Sermon File Addin Free!

Sermon File AddinWe’ve decided to extend the special offer on the Sermon File Addin through the weekend, so if you haven’t yet taken advantage of this tremendous offer, it’s not too late!

If you missed the earlier post (which mentions a number of other specials as well), for a limited time we’re “selling” the downloadable version of the Sermon File Addin for the whopping price of $0. That’s right. It’s totally free. No tax. No shipping. And no waiting.

The Sermon File Addin allows you to turn years of old sermon manuscripts into a powerful, organized, searchable Libronix book file. You can create a second book of all of your illustrations as well. Not only can you search and interact with your new books like the other books in your Libronix library, but you’ll even see your own sermons and illustrations show up in the Passage Guide. If you haven’t seen how it works, be sure to watch the two-minute demo video.

Get Started Today

If you’ve already picked it up, it’s easy to start importing your sermons from a variety of common file formats. In these five tutorial videos, we walk you through the simple process.

Sermon File Addin (Part 1): Importing Your Sermons and Illustrations

Sermon File Addin (Part 2a): Edit Screen

Sermon File Addin (Part 2b): Edit Screen

Sermon File Addin (Part 3): Navigate Your New Sermon and Illustration Books

Sermon File Addin (Part 4): See How Your Sermons and Illustration Are Integrated into Logos

To watch these videos in higher resolution, see the Sermon File Addin section of our videos page.

Update: This offer has expired.

Resources on the Book of Hebrews

One of the features in Bible Study Magazine is an ongoing Bible study that focuses on the practical value of the book of Hebrews for Christians today. In conjunction with this series, we created a product guide of commentaries and Bible study tools on this important letter.

If you’ve ever wanted to see a list of most of the commentaries that we sell on the book of Hebrews—more than 35—now you can in our Hebrews product guide.

If you’re planning to study or preach through Hebrews, you’re sure to find some great tools to add to your digital library.

For more lists of resources, be sure to check out our other product guides. Have an idea for a product guide that you’d like to see? Drop us a note in the comments and let us know.