Good Friday: Sorrow and Hope

04-18_IsaiahAround the world, today is a day to remember God’s sacrifice.

Good Friday is also known as Holy Friday, or Great Friday. In Germany, this same day is often called Sorrowful Friday. These drastically different names capture not only important aspects of Good Friday’s purpose, but also the dual nature of the emotions surrounding this day.

It is good indeed

To some, Good Friday may seem to be an ironic name; what could be “good” about the day humanity murdered the deity that created it? But to Christians, Good Friday serves as a reminder not just of the death of Jesus, but of the hope we now have because of it. We don’t experience this day like the disciples and Jesus’ friends and family did, because we already know how it ends. What starts with death ends with life, salvation, and restoration. The Faithlife Study Bible reminds us, “because of Good Friday, we can thank God for Easter.”

Spoiler alert: evil loses

Sorrowful Friday is right, too. On this day, the only perfect human being ever to live was slain for our imperfections. This day was the epitome of sin in the world, and it’s a painful reminder of the evil that still dwells on this earth. It’s still here, waging war against God and his goodness.

We know that evil will lose, yet some days it feels as if evil has already won—as if the one we put our hope in didn’t conquer the way we expected. Some of the things people experience every day can feel like defeat: the loss of a loved one, crippling financial burden, heartbreak, or depression.

But remember:

“[H]e was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.”
—Isaiah 53:5

As Christians, we can have satisfaction and peace knowing that evil didn’t win. This is not the end. Easter is coming.

* * *

Looking for resources for study or meditation this Easter season? Check out our specials for Holy Week.

Why Phyllis Tickle Loves Our New Anglican Base Packages

Phyllis Tickle LogosPhyllis Tickle is one of the most interesting and important voices speaking to and for Christians today. A force in the Christian publishing world for nearly a quarter of a century, Phyllis has a lot to say about the trends of Christian belief and practice. Though she just celebrated her 80th birthday, Tickle’s analysis of new movements in Christianity continues to set the tone for current scholarship and reflection.

Tickle’s most recent work focuses on what she calls “Emergence Christianity.” Her two books on the subject—The Great Emergence: How Christianity Is Changing and Why and Emergence Christianity: What It Is, Where It Is Going, and Why It Matters—have quickly become seminal texts for anyone wanting to learn about this important movement.

Recently, I offered Phyllis Tickle, an Episcopalian, one of our Anglican base packages to review and endorse, if she felt so inclined. After using the package for a week or so, and asking me a number of questions to try to get at what we were doing and why, she had this to say:

Those of us who have already been using the Logos Bible packages and libraries for years are always going to be enthusiastic anytime Logos ventures into new territory or adds yet another base package. We are especially enthusiastic, of course, when that new addition plays directly into areas of our own particular interests, as is the case here; for as an Episcopalian, I fell into the Anglican base package like a child suddenly let loose in a carnival of impossible delights and unimagined wonders, not to mention of some totally fascinating and/or previously unsuspected esoterica.

An Anglican base package, like every other Logos package, is a tool, of course, not a carnival. It is designed as a tool and defined as one. Yet one of the major hallmarks of a good tool, one of the chief criteria for evaluating it, in fact, is to ask whether or not it delights, whether or not it sits comfortably in the hand, whether or not it gives both satisfaction to the eye and resolution to the tasks which it was created to address. This one does; and though it may not be properly represented as a carnival of delights (although I still contend it is that, too) the base package should most certainly be represented as a tool that can render the Anglican heart wiser in its affections and send the Anglican mind back to its daily work rejoicing.

The usefulness of the base packages for clergy,  academics, and licensed lay workers is almost too obvious to warrant comment (though it does bear saying that I cannot imagine anyone’s undertaking seminary training nowadays without having a base package duly tucked, quite literally, into his or her tool box.) Since I am neither professional clergy nor a practicing academic, however, and since, pray God, my days of graduate school are all well behind me, I can speak credibly only about the pleasure and the comfort and, perhaps, even the glory  of having, ready to hand at the click of a mouse, the primaries of Anglicanism . . . its great documents, its ecclesial proceedings and decisions, its political debates and theological arguments, etc. . . . as well as authoritative and respected commentaries on everything from our evolving theology over the centuries to our ever-evolving and shifting role in the political and secular life of the world.

A base package may not be for everyone . . . in fact, I doubt that it is . . . but for professionals and also for all of us who yearn toward more intimacy with who and what we are and more familiarity with the ways by which we and our theological forebears arrived at our own place in history, it is a benison of the first order.

See what so impressed Phyllis Tickle—get an Anglican base package today. Use coupon code ANGLICANBP to get 15% off!

Improve Your Study of Biblical Languages

Fortress Press New Testament BundleDoing research for your dissertation? Looking to further your investigation of the Christology of John and Paul, or of Hebrew poetics in the Minor Prophets?

Check out these three new bundles from Sheffield Academic Press, Augsburg Fortress Press, and the Pontifical Biblical Institute, which explore issues of language, interpretation, and ancient culture in the context of New and Old Testament study:

Fortress Press New Testament Studies Bundle (70 vols.)

This bundle is a treasure trove of key modern works on Matthew, Luke/Acts, John, the Pauline epistles, Jesus, and Paul. The collection’s contributors include E.P. Sanders, Ben Witherington III, Luke Timothy Johnson, and Terence L. Donaldson. Fortify your knowledge in NT studies: pick up this new bundle today!

Stanley E. Porter Language and Interpretation Collection (24 vols.)

Stanley E. Porter is famous for his expertise on New Testament textual and hermeneutic issues. This collection gives you his most renowned volumes, many of them cowritten with scholars like Craig A. Evans, D.A. Carson, David Tombs, and others. Not sure where to begin? We recommend Handbook to Exegesis of the New Testament, Idioms of the Greek New Testament, and New Testament Interpretation and Methods.

Pontifical Biblical Institute of Ancient Language StudiesPontifical Biblical Institute Ancient Language Studies (50 vols.)

Old Testament scholars, we haven’t forgotten about you! This impressive collection features both New and Old Testament studies in ancient languages, including Ugaritic, Akkadian, Hebrew, Aramaic, and Northwest Semitic. Dig into the Targums and other ancient Jewish writings with Joseph Fitzmyer, Martin McNamara, Daniel J. Harrington, and other trusted scholars—you’ll get a better understanding of the ancient world’s languages and cultures.

Save when you buy in bulk, and never pay twice!

With Logos.com’s Dynamic Pricing, you won’t be charged for volumes you already own—just sign in and view a bundle’s page to see your special custom price. What’s more, these collections’ massive bundling discounts give you more scholarship for your dollar. And you can make things even more affordable with an interest-free payment plan: just add a collection to your cart to see your options!

Learn from the Experts with the Lexham Methods Series

lexham-methods-series (2)A few weeks ago, we dropped the price of the Lexham Methods Series to $60: that’s over 75% off, an incredible discount on such a valuable resource. Have you placed your Community Pricing bid? If not, you should bid right now—a price this low won’t last long!

Need a bit more convincing? Our team of scholars has put hours of research and writing into the resource, but to make it even better, we’ve also called on a number of expert contributors. Lexham Methods is a collaboration between professors, linguists, and our in-house research team.

Here’s what our partners have to say about their work on the Methods series:

What’s most rewarding about working on the Lexham Methods Series?

David B. Schreiner (PhD): My favorite part of working with the series is rising to the challenge. Writing on a particular interpretive method forces you to know all aspects of the method. Writing for an audience that’s not necessarily restricted to the academy forces you to be on top of your game. You have to communicate ideas in a way that ensures broad-scale understanding.

Amy Balogh (PhD candidate, Iliff School of Theology & University of Denver): The best part about working on the Lexham Methods Series is the opportunity to share my understanding of the biblical text as a skillfully crafted work of art. Knowing that all who read from this series will come away with fresh, new insights into the text makes the project one that’s worthy of the time, effort, and care going into it.

How can the Lexham Methods Series help our users make their Bible study better?

John DelHousaye (PhD, associate professor, Phoenix Seminary): The Lexham Methods Series takes many of the best insights of biblical scholarship in the last two centuries and presents them in an understandable, practical way for the serious student of God’s Word.

Douglas Estes (PhD, lead pastor, Trinity Church & adjunct professor, Phoenix Seminary): With the Logos platform, Bible students of all levels can use this series as an easy-to-understand reference running parallel to the text. As a result, it has great potential to eliminate the divide between the professional scholar and the everyday Bible student.

What sets the Lexham Methods Series apart from similar products?

Judith Odor (PhD candidate, Asbury Theological Seminary): The brevity of the chapters—of each treatment of each method—makes the LMS unique in its field. There may be other introductions to various methods that offer the same depth of material, but they’re much lengthier, they’re more involved, they’re less approachable, and they don’t offer such a wide range of methods for your perusal, refreshment, or education.

Jeffery Leonard (PhD, assistant professor, Samford University): One of the best things about the Lexham Methods Series is the way it walks the reader step by step through each individual method, giving examples and comparisons along the way. It does a great job of balancing theory on the one hand with practical examples on the other.

* * *

Understand and interpret the Bible better than ever before. Bid now on the Lexham Methods Series!

Dying to Bear Fruit: A Life of Sacrificial Love

04-16_John_12Could this be the Messiah? After so many years, had God finally sent his Anointed One to deliver his people? Would the rightful King now take his throne?

Indeed, the Messiah had come—Jesus was here! His disciples believed in him. They publicly confessed, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matt. 16:16). They knew that he had come for their deliverance.

Yet even his disciples did not really understand what Jesus had come to do. They expected the Messiah to be a warrior king. They wanted him to reinstate the kingdom of Israel, to start a revolution, to overthrow their oppressors by force, to deliver them from Rome. But Jesus had a different deliverance in mind.

Deliverance through his love

“The reason the Son of God appeared,” we read in 1 John 3:8, “was to destroy the works of the devil.” Jesus came to save his people not from Rome or from any other earthly oppression, but from their sins (Matt. 1:21). And his people include far more than Israel—Jesus came to deliver the whole world from sin.

His methods weren’t what the disciples expected, either. They expected Jesus to pick up a sword and fight, but he said that “all who take the sword will perish by the sword” (Matt. 26:52). He instructed his followers to “love your enemies . . . and you will be sons of the Most High” (Luke 6:35).

Jesus knew that evil cannot be overthrown by force. Deliverance can only come through sacrificial love. His own glorification could only be achieved by laying down his life.

And Jesus answered them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” (John 12:23–24)

Jesus, God in flesh, willingly gave himself up. He took our sin and allowed the powers of darkness to do their worst to him. And in so doing, he broke their power.

When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. (1 Pet. 2:23–24)

Fruit for his kingdom

Through Jesus’ sacrificial death, we have deliverance. But we too must die if we are to bear fruit. We must die to our sins, and we must die to ourselves. Just as Jesus gave up his rights and died on the cross, we must give up the rights we think are ours. We must give up whatever it is we’re clinging to and live a life of sacrificial love.

But of course Jesus did not stay dead—God raised him back to life and vindicated his suffering. And so our sacrifice for Christ will not be in vain, either. From our death to self, God will raise up much fruit for his kingdom.

But are we willing to die?

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Looking for resources for study or meditation this Easter season? Check out our specials for Holy Week.

Your Very Last Day to Get Logos March Madness Discounts!

LMM_75_Percent_Off_Blog

Today is your last day to take advantage of Logos March Madness deals! If you haven’t picked up your favorites already, now’s the time. We started with 64 authors; as the winning authors rose to the top, so did the deals. Now you can get huge discounts on hundreds of your favorite products!

This year’s best deals

Want to make sure you’re getting the best of the best? Here are a few of this year’s bestselling authors:

Don’t miss your chance!

With hundreds of discounted titles, there’s something for everyone. Pick up your favorites before midnight tonight—otherwise you could end up paying two, three, or even four times as much. You may never see these deals again, so don’t wait!

These deals disappear at midnight tonight—get your favorite Logos March Madness products right now!

Knox Doctor of Ministry: A Degree for Ministers

give your ministry momentum knox

As a minister of the Word, you have a high calling. The work of biblical ministry requires the minister to be able to draw from the entirety of Scripture to benefit and enrich the church body:

“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness”
—2 Timothy 3:16

That’s why Knox Theological Seminary is committed to equipping pastors in biblical preaching and teaching. With a Knox DMin, you’ll learn the exegetical and homiletical skills you need to preach Christ from all of Scripture.

A DMin from Knox is affordable and flexible. You’ll do much of your course work wherever you are, so you can keep your job and continue your ministry where God has you. You can complete up to three DMin courses online; in addition, a couple of times each year, you’ll fly in for Knox’s one-week intensives, where you’ll study with world-class professors like Bryan Chapell, Gerald Bray, Michael Allen, Jim Belcher, and others.

“I just returned home from two very fruitful weeks at Knox in the DMin program. I am eager to get back into the classroom. This is an excellent program and the Logos connection makes it very affordable. Thank you Knox and Logos.”
—Jim, a Knox DMin student

This May and June, you can take some incredible classes, including:

  • DM872: The Epistle to the Hebrews: Exegesis and Theology (online), with Dr. Michael Allen
  • DM836: The Art of Exegetical Theology in Preaching, with Dr. Warren Gage
  • DM856: Mission and Tradition: Seeking Balance in Ministry, with Dr. Jim Belcher
  • DM916: Scripture and Doctrine, with Dr. Jonathan Linebaugh

Now’s a great time to start earning your doctorate—request more information about a Knox DMin, and start futhering your ministry today!

Learn more about Knox’s DMin program.

Explore the Language of the Early Church

HarpersLatinDictionaryWe pay a lot of attention to the Bible’s original Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic, but many of the early church’s most important texts were written in another language: Latin. Luckily, Logos offers some outstanding Latin reference works and primary sources that can bring you closer to the ancient world.

Let’s start exploring:

Get the best Latin dictionary

Choosing scholarly resources can come down to preference—we all have our favorite authors, our favorite exegetical methods, our favorite reference works. But sometimes there’s no room for debate: sometimes one resource is clearly the standard in its field.

Lewis and Short’s Latin Dictionary is that resource. For those of us who’re fascinated by the ancient world, it’s simply the finest Latin dictionary available.

Scholars choose Lewis and Short because of its breadth. It gives you 2,019 pages’ worth of lexical data, spanning classical times through the early modern era; that makes it an important aid whether you’re working through Irenaeus or through Aquinas. If you’re studying Christian history, you’ll be working with Latin. If you’re working with Latin, you’ll want this dictionary.

Moreover, it’s in the Logos edition that Lewis and Short really shines. Those 2,019 pages can be hard to navigate in print, to say nothing of the legwork involved in cross-referencing them against the patristic hard copies (if you can even access any). With Logos,* everything is indexed for precise searches, and you can jump right from an entry to a primary source and vice versa. It’s that mixture of scholarly rigor and right-now usefulness that’s earned Lewis and Short such glowing reviews: other Logos users write that “[t]his is THE Latin dictionary,” that it’s “easily the best Latin dictionary ever made,” that it’s “stellar,” that “no hard copy can even begin to compete with what we can do with a Logos dictionary.”

Navigate the early church’s culture with the finest Latin dictionary available: pick up Lewis and Short right now.

* For now, Lewis and Short is only available for desktop, not mobile.

Then choose from these important primary sources:

early-church-fathers-protestant-edition1. Early Church Fathers

Augustine, Irenaeus, Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian, Eusebius, Origen—this massive collection sets you up with English translations of the postapostolic era’s most important works. It’s a window into the origins of a great deal of Christian doctrine, which makes it a fascinating way to revisit the foundations of your faith. Pick up the Early Church Fathers collection and explore the early church’s world.

2. The Works of Prudentius

The poems of Prudentius, who was educated in religion, literature, and rhetoric, are shot through with biblical influence. His most important work is the Psychomachia, which is considered the first major Christian allegory; that means it paved the way for classics like the Divine Comedy and The Pilgrim’s Progress. You’re already studying the early church’s theologians. Now, while the four-volume Works of Prudentius is on Community Pricing, you can study its poetry for 73% off.

works-of-ovid-and-horace3. Works of Ovid and Horace

Latin literature’s three canonical poets are Virgil, Ovid, and Horace. Though they weren’t Christian writers, it’s important to know their work, which was hugely influential in the ancient world. You can get Virgil’s Aeneid in the famous Harvard Classics Collection; Ovid and Horace you can get in the incredibly rich Works of Ovid and Horace. (The standout volume is Ovid’s Metamorphoses, one of the most influential poems in literary history.) Get in on the best price—bid on Ovid’s and Horace’s collected works for 83% off!

4. Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things

In Acts 17:18, Paul addresses Epicurean and Stoic philosophers. If you’re curious about Paul’s context, you’ll want to look into Epicureanism, one of the most popular worldviews in early Christian times; the best way to do so is through the writings of Lucretius. (Epicurus’ magnum opus, On Nature, was destroyed, but Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things builds on Epicurus’ thought.) Right now, On the Nature of Things is 72% off on Community Pricing—place your bid before the price goes up.

Pick up Lewis and Short today, and then choose the primary sources that fit your study!

Why Scriptural Metacomments Matter

lexham-discourse-hebrew-bible-bundleHave you ever noticed that when we talk, instead of just saying what we want to say, we’ll often say something about what we’re saying? We use expressions like:

  • “I want you to know that . . .”
  • “It’s very important that you understand that . . .”
  • “Don’t you know that . . .”

Expressions like these are called metacomments.  They interrupt the speech by commenting on what’s about to be said, or what’s just been said. We could just as easily leave them out and say what we wanted to say—so why do we use them?

The interruption caused by the metacomment slows down the flow of the discourse, producing a special highlighting effect. Just think about when we use the English expressions listed above. They signal that what we are about to say is important information. Think of them as road flares or speed bumps, telling you to pay attention to what is just ahead.

Believe it or not, metacomments are also used in Scripture. The Lexham Discourse Hebrew Bible and the English High Definition Old Testament use symbols to mark each metacomment.

Metacomments in action

Let’s take a closer look at a metacomment:

In 1 Kings 2:36–38, King Solomon, adhering to his father David’s final instructions (vv. 2–9), commands that Shimei the Benjaminite be confined to Jerusalem in order to prevent him from marshaling support against the Davidic dynasty. In v. 37, Solomon threatens Shimei with what will happen to him if he attempts to cross the Wadi Kidron and leave Jerusalem:

metacomments

Click image to enlarge

Notice that the writer could have just said: “. . . on the day you go out and cross over the Wadi Kidron, you will surely die. Your blood will be on your head.”  But instead, the author inserts the metacomment: “know for certain that . . .” just before he states the consequence. This has the effect of slowing down the discourse and simultaneously highlighting the severity of the consequences Shimei will face if he tries to flee Jerusalem.

Another example of a metacomment involves the Hebrew phrase yn:∞doa} µ~aun “declares the Lord.” This formula is frequently used in the Prophets to break what might have been one long speech into smaller parts since the original manuscripts lacked chapter and verse divisions. Breaking it into smaller chunks makes it easier for the reader to process. But sometimes we find metacomments like “declares the Lord” used in unexpected places, like the middle of a clause or speech rather than the beginning or end. Placing the metacomment in the middle of the clause interrupts the flow of speech and highlights what comes next. Take a look at the use of yn:∞doa} µ~aun “declares the Lord” in Amos 8.

Amos 8 depicts the Lord’s impending judgment upon Israel. In v. 9, we read:

“And on that day,” declares the Lord GOD, “I will make the sun go down at noon and darken the earth in broad daylight.”

The metacomment “declares the Lord” is unnecessary, since we already know from v. 7 that Yahweh is the one speaking. Inserting this phrase in the middle of the clause interrupts the flow of speech, slowing down the discourse and signaling us to pay special attention to the imagery of divine judgment that follows.

Annotate each metacomment with the LDHB and LHDOT

The Lexham Discourse Hebrew Bible and the Lexham High Definition Old Testament help you dig deeper in your Bible study by annotating each metacomment, as well as 29 other important discourse devices. These resources also include an introduction and glossary to help you understand the function of each device.

Last year we released Genesis–Jeremiah, and now we’re excited to announce the release of Ezekiel–Malachi. When you purchase the LDHB or the LHDOT, you’ll receive Genesis–Malachi; the remaining books will be automatically downloaded to your Logos library as they’re released in the coming months.

If you own either of these resources, you should have already received your update automatically. If you haven’t received your update yet, simply restart your software.

If you don’t already own the Lexham Discourse Hebrew Bible and the Lexham High Definition Old Testament, pick them up today!

Journey through Holy Week with Logos

He is Risen Holy WeekYesterday, Palm Sunday, marked the beginning of Holy Week. Now we walk through a season of sorrow, hope, and great joy.

Holy Week is a time to remember Jesus’ amazing victory over death. It’s a distinct and important time for Christians to reflect on and celebrate the resurrection of Jesus: a reminder of the greatest sacrifice and the most amazing redemption.

To help you reflect during this important time, we’ve discounted a number of valuable resources focusing on the Cross and the Resurrection.

This week, use coupon code EASTER2014 to save on powerful books:

Then tune in to LogosTalk all week long to enjoy devotional posts focused on this important season.