On Remembrance and Veterans Day

Veteran's DayAt the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918, the hostilities of WWI came to an end. Although the war didn’t officially end for another 7 months, countries around the globe commemorate the armistice on Remembrance Day.

This special day is acknowledged throughout Great Britain, Canada, India, South Africa,  Australia, and New Zealand. It’s also observed by other countries who fought alongside the British Empire during WWI, like Kenya, Bermuda, Barbados, and Mauritius.

On November 11, 1919, President Wilson called for the United States to recognize the first Armistice day:

“To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations.”

In the summer of 1926, the United States Congress passed a resolution officially recognizing Armistice Day with the following resolution:

Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and

Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and

Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.

In 1954, after suffering through WWII (the largest deployment America had ever seen) and the Korean War, veterans’ organizations appealed to the 86th Congress to modify Armistice Day to honor the American veterans of all wars. Congress responded by changing Armistice Day to Veterans Day.

Whether or not you live in a country that observes Remembrance Day or Veterans Day, take a few moments today to thank someone who has served your country and remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

Logos 5: Shortcut to Definitions

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

If you’re like me, as you’re reading the Bible or another book, you frequently come to words for which you need a definition or other background information. Without Logos, this can be difficult to locate.

With Logos 5, however, that data is just a double-click away! Try this:

  • Open a Bible to Acts 1:8 (A).

  • Double-click a word, like Jerusalem (B).
  • Notice that highest-prioritized resource containing an article for the city opens right to that article (C).

  • Double-click other words in the verse, such as Judea and Samaria.
  • Notice, again, a resource looking up these words.

The double-click, a shortcut for executing what Logos calls a Lookup search, works within not only Bibles, but any book!

  • Open Easton’s Bible Dictionary to the article for Corinth (D).
  • Double-click the word Greece at the end of the first sentence (E).
  • Notice that a resource jumps to an article for Greece (F).

You should try this trick when you come to an unfamiliar English word in any popular book (G). But don’t be surprised if the resource that opens is Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary (H). This may be the first resource Logos finds with an entry!

 

Last Chance for Reformation Day Deals!

Reformation Day

For just a few more days, you can get discounts on books by Luther and Zwingli, up to $600 off the Calvin 500 Collection, and Luther’s 95 Thesesfree!

But you have to act fast—all Reformation Day deals expire Monday, Nov. 11. Use coupon code REFDAY13 at checkout.

Martin Luther, born on Nov. 10, 1483, revolutionized the beliefs and worship of Christians around the world. In honor of his 530th birthday, you can save on a number of his resources:

  1. luthers-worksTake up to 10% off Luther’s WorksThis 55-volume set includes Luther’s exposition and commentary on Scripture, plus an index of quotes and topics. You won’t find a larger collection of Luther’s works.
  2. Take up to 18% off The Theology of Post-Reformation Lutheranism. This two-volume set encompasses Lutheran orthodoxy. It includes contributions from numerous theologians from 1577–1713, giving you a fair picture of Lutheran theology as a whole.
  3. Pick up the 95 Theses for free! Written 496 years ago, this is one of the most significant documents in Christian history. The Logos edition provides the text in parallel English and Latin versions. Get it free while you can!

Browse all the Reformed products on saleDon’t miss this chance to pick up Reformed resources at massive discounts! Use coupon code REFDAY13 through Monday, November 11.

Pre-Order Camp Logos 2 on DVD

camp-logos-2-dvd-rom

We recently shipped Camp Logos 1 on DVD, and hundreds of users are already learning to get more from their software—from the comfort of their homes. Now you can pre-order the Camp Logos 2 DVDs for only $199.95.

What do you get with Camp Logos 2?

Camp Logos 2 focuses on helping you organize your library. Chances are, you’ve got hundreds or thousands of resources, and that can be overwhelming. Camp Logos 2 teaches you to organize them in the way that works best for you. You’ll get answers to questions like:

  • How do I organize my books for maximum benefit?
  • How are my books indexed?
  • How do I combine and prioritize resources?

If you’ve already been through Camp Logos 1, you may be wondering, “Do I really need Camp Logos 2?” If you want to make use of every book you own, yes. Camp Logos 1 teaches you the basics; Camp Logos 2 teaches you how to get the most out of every single book you own, and how best to incorporate future additions to your library.

“As a ‘power user,’ I found Camp Logos 2 incredibly helpful! It was a giant leap forward from Camp Logos 1, and it made it possible for me to customize the software to perfectly meet my study needs.” —Camp Logos 2 attendee

You’ll also cover topics like text comparison, visual filtering for English words and original-language lemmas, original-language searching, and far more.

Right now, you can get the DVD edition of Camp Logos 2 on Pre-Pub for $199.95. Pre-order it today!

Double Amputee Displays Logos Loyalty

Logos Prosthetic LegAt Logos, we work hard to provide a tool that people feel passionate about. We’re proud to have such loyal customers—in fact, we’ve had some go above and beyond in showing their loyalty. When double-amputee Matthew Jones, a devoted Logos user, requested to add our logo to his new prosthetic legs, we eagerly agreed.

We recently had the chance to chat with Jones about his background and his passion for Logos.

1. What is your personal background?

I was raised in Japan by my missionary parents. I have been married to a gentle-spirited lady named Nina for 32 years. God has blessed us with 13 children. I worked for General Motors in Oklahoma and Michigan until I retired at 38. I am now a stay-at-home dad.

2. What’s the story behind your prosthetic legs?

I lost my legs to diabetes via below-knee amputation. My new legs are made by the world’s best prosthetics crafter—they go the extra mile in personalizing their work. They did a great job placing my two graphics on a pearl-white background.

3. What inspired you to use the Logos logo?

I am happy with my Logos 5 software and like to talk to others about it. The Logos logo represents not only the world’s premier Bible software, but also the fine people who work for Logos. I am hoping the logo will spark conversation with others. I also think it looks pretty cool.

4. What’s the meaning behind the other symbol?

The other graphic is a combination of symbols representing my spiritual heritage. The top symbol is a menorah, representing Israel. The bottom symbol is an ΙΧΘΥΣ fish, representing “Jesus Christ, God’s Son, Savior.” The base of the menorah intersects the tail of the fish to form the Shield of David in the middle. A cross is in the center of the star. The old covenant and the new covenant meet at the cross.

5. How long have you been using Logos?

I “came home” to Libronix 3 in April of 2008. I was the first person to see Logos 4 when it was newly posted on the website. I quickly updated to Logos 4, and then Logos 5. I am excited to see what the future holds for Logos 6 and beyond.

6. How do you use your Logos library?

If I were a pastor, I would use Logos for sermon preparation and counseling, but I am not. If I were an academic, I would concentrate on reading lists, but I am not. Nor am I an expert linguist, so I do appreciate reverse interlinears.

One benefit of my large Logos library is being able to find something on just about every topic I want to read up on. Many of the resources lend themselves very well to our homeschooling efforts. I use Logos for Bible study and studying background material.

The Passage Guide is a quick and easy way to launch a great study. I like all the guides in Logos 5, but the Passage Guide is my favorite—hands down.

One recurring delight I have with Logos is discovering a resource in my library that I did not know I had. Another delight is learning another new trick from Morris Proctor in weekly emails or in a forum post by one of the many seasoned users.

7. You’re a frequent contributor to our forums—tell us about your involvement there.

I have found a nice community of fellow users in the forums. I learn so much from others—I believe it is an important venue of support and education. The forum community spans across all geographical and cultural divides. There are some very talented and gracious people posting there. I like to associate with these types of people, so I hang out in the forums whenever I get the chance. It is a great feeling to be able to help someone with a problem.

We’re incredibly honored to mean so much to Matthew Jones—and humbled by the loyalty of all our users.

Thank you!

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Right now, you can get 15% off any new Logos 5 base package. Use coupon code GET15OFF today and see what you can get out of your new library.

What Did Ancient Heresy Mean for the Early Church?

Last week, we looked at the Epicureans, who sought to maximize individual pleasure. Two weeks ago, we looked at the Stoics, who sought freedom from the world. Now let’s look at another competitor with early Christianity, this one much closer to home—the Gnostics.

Everyone knows that Gnosticism, popular in the first few centuries AD, was rejected as heresy. What’s really interesting is what it meant for the early church.

Evil world, secret knowledge, layered heavens

irenaeus-gnosticismGnosticism was “a system of religious thought that blended elements of Christianity with Greek philosophy and Zoroastrianism. The basic tenet is that the created world [is] evil and salvation [comes] through secret knowledge (gnosis)” (FSB). But the diversity of Gnostic schools makes the system hard to pin down. Indeed, wrote a sarcastic Irenaeus, “since their teachings and traditions are different, and the newer ones among them claim to be constantly finding something new, and working out what no one ever thought of before, it is hard to describe their views.”

So let’s look at the strangest, most interesting cosmology: that of one of the later Gnostics, Basilides.

Basilides’ heaven was not one but many, concentric. At the distant center was a single god, ruling over seven lesser gods; these seven created a heaven. They also created seven more gods and another, lower heaven, the symmetrical image of the first; the gods of this lower heaven created yet another heaven, with its sevenfold pantheon; these, another, and so on—365 heavens total. (Thus was the problem of evil resolved: by sheer distance between the world and the divine.) At the very bottom was the god of the Hebrew Bible, who, reduced 365 times over, was nothing but a demiurge—a creator god, working not with essences (like the inner gods) but with mere matter.

From there, Gnosticism was characterized by:

  • Dualism between essence and matter, light and darkness, spirit and body. (Most Gnostics, judging all things fleshly as sinful, were ascetics; others, judging all things fleshly as equally sinful, were hedonists.)
  • A focus on enlightenment. The Gnostics thought that they, through divine revelation, possessed secret knowledge that would allow them to pass from earth up through the ringed heavens—enlightenment unavailable in Scripture alone. (Enlightened souls were the only thing on Earth worth redeeming.)
  • A vastly different notion of Christ. God took mercy on darkened, matter-bound humanity, sending a redeemer—a redeemer whose body was, since flesh and pure spirit are incompatible, merely an illusion. Therefore, Jesus’ physical crucifixion was illusory, too.

History tends to record Gnosticism as a subset of Christianity, but, given these radical departures, it’s more accurate (and interesting) to regard it as a standalone worldview. That’s especially true when you consider its diverse heritage.

Where did Gnosticism come from?

plato-gnosticismGnosticism’s three great influences were Platonism, Zoroastrianism, and elements of Christianity.

  1. From Plato, the Gnostics inherited the distinction between spirit and flesh, key to the Gnostic conception of personal enlightenment. Likewise, the Platonic distinction between form and matter influenced the Gnostic distinction between an essential heaven and a material earth. And the demiurge, too, comes to Gnosticism from Plato, who imagined a creator god in his Timaeus.
  2. From Zoroastrianism, the Gnostics inherited the dualism between light and darkness. More generally, Gnostic dualism owes something to Zoroaster’s consolidation of the Iranian pantheon into opposing forces of “illuminating wisdom” and “destructive spirit.”
  3. From Christianity, Gnosticism inherited pieces but by no means the whole: Jesus, but not his physical resurrection; the Bible, but only as an untrustworthy text to be modified by aggressive misreading and supplemented by such forged additions as the Gospel of Judas. (The Gnostic tendency to modify Scripture is unsurprising—they thought of it, after all, as the work of an inferior deity, given to errors, omissions, and deceit.)

Irenaeus’ counterarguments

Alarmed by the Gnostic worldview, Irenaeus set out to disprove it in Against Heresies. He argued that:

  • The church was authoritative because of apostolic succession. According to the Gnostics, only their oral tradition, derived from the apostles, granted divine knowledge; Irenaeus countered that “The Church . . . received from the apostles and their disciples its faith.” Because the church leaders learned from people who’d learned from people who (a few steps earlier) had learned directly from Christ and his apostles, the church was to be trusted.
  • The gospel was reliable because it was written after the apostles came to divine knowledge. The Gnostics thought the gospel was written before the apostles came to full enlightenment; Irenaeus responded that, right after the Resurrection, “the Holy Spirit came upon [the apostles], and they were filled with all things and had perfect knowledge.”
  • The sheer diversity of competing Gnostic viewpoints undermined the Gnostic claim to truth. With so many Gnostics “constantly finding something new, and working out what no one ever thought of before,” how could any one be correct?

Gnosticism’s defeat was decisive—so much so that we know the school primarily through the writings of Irenaeus and other critics.

Gnosticism’s consequences

The debates over Gnosticism helped shape the early church in three ways. They contributed to:

  1. An increased focus on apostolic succession, so important to Irenaeus’ arguments.
  2. A standardized scriptural canon. In AD 150, Marcion proposed his own canon, which omitted the OT and was edited by Marcion himself. Irenaeus responded with a list of 21 canonical books, including the four Gospels.
  3. An emphasis on creeds to separate false from proper belief. The Apostles’ Creed, specifically, not only predates but also answers Gnostic heresy: “I believe in God the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth” rejects the Gnostics’ subaltern demiurge and flawed physical world; “Jesus Christ . . . born of the virgin Mary” rejects the Gnostic conception of Jesus’ body as illusory; “I believe in the holy catholic [universal] church” rejects the Gnostic claim that enlightenment is for a select few.

Gnosticism was remarkable not only for its strangeness, its startling diversity of cosmologies, but for its historical consequences. It’s in large part thanks to Gnosticism that the third- and fourth-century Christians solidified the doctrines we now regard as orthodox; that alone makes the Gnostics worth studying.

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prudentius-gnosticismIf you’re interested in church and intellectual history, you should know the rise and fall of Gnosticism. Noet sets you up with many of the school’s most important texts, as well as smart tools for better scholarship.

  1. Understand its Hellenistic origins (and the origins of so much of Western thought) with the 24-volume Works of Plato, on Community Pricing for 83% off.
  2. Examine its rise with Eusebius’ Ecclesiastical History.
  3. Know the arguments against heresy with Irenaeus’ Against Heresies and the Works of Prudentius (who refuted the dualism of Marcion), on Community Pricing for 73% off.

Or extend your library with Noet’s enormous Classical Foundations Bundle, which sets you up to study antiquity across philosophy, history, and literature.

Then keep reading about early-church context:


 

3 Reasons the Pastoral Letters Matter Today

lexham-bible-guides-pauls-letters-collection (1)Three major theological issues addressed in the Pastoral Letters still affect the church today: women in ministry, church leadership, and the inspiration of Scripture.

When I was in ministry, I hoped people wouldn’t bring up these controversial issues because I never felt ready to explain them “on the spot.” I didn’t intentionally avoid complicated and controversial matters; I just needed time to figure them out on my own first. That time never came—until I sat down to review all the relevant material to write the Lexham Bible Guide: Paul’s Letters Collection on 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, and Titus.

I didn’t realize how complex the exegesis of 1 Tim. 2:11–15 was until I’d spent a week writing nearly 4,000 words on the subject. (That’s roughly equivalent to a 15-page paper, double-spaced, in 12-point Times New Roman—I had to write only a handful of those in college and grad school.) With the Lexham Bible Guide on 1 Timothy now available, what took me a week to write should take you just 30 minutes to read. For comparison, it would take far longer to read Towner’s work on 1 Tim. 2:8–15 (NICNT, pp. 190–239), 50 pages that focus primarily on background issues and the interpretation of 1 Tim. 2:11–12.

Interpreting Paul’s 1 Timothy

In writing this volume of the Lexham Bible Guides, I discovered that nearly every Greek word in those two verses was open to interpretation, including gynē (“woman” or “wife”?), hēsychia (“total silence” or “polite attention”?), and authentein (“to have authority over” . . . but does that mean misusing authority, or just having authority?). Putting aside the discussion about whether Paul authored this letter, the ongoing debate over the possible nuances of meaning revolves around one essential question: Does this passage apply to all believers for all time, or only to specific situations like those Timothy faced at Ephesus? There are no easy answers, and sincere Christian men and women have put forward many thoughtful explanations accounting for various exegetical, social, historical, and theological aspects.

My discussion in this volume of the Lexham Bible Guides addresses the seven major questions that consume the attention of most interpreters. I’ve provided a basic overview of these essential questions and represented the major options for answering them.

Equipping yourself for the tough questions

Instead of dreading a conversation with a church member over this issue, you can feel equipped to explain the text and the primary reasons for debate. The Lexham Bible Guides were designed precisely with this goal in mind—providing you with a time-saving, well-researched introduction to major exegetical and theological issues.

Preparing for regular teaching and preaching can be challenging. You may have the commentaries or access to articles and books, but how much time do you have to wade through them? The Lexham Bible Guides: Paul’s Letters Collection will save you countless hours in sermon and teaching preparation and give you the confidence to address the controversial issues.

Order the Paul’s Letters Collection today! 

Get the Newest Books at the Lowest Prices

Logos PrePubThe Pre-Publication program (or “Pre-Pub” for short) gives you the chance to push new books into Logos at the lowest possible prices.

Logos books are more than ordinary ebooks, which are essentially just print books on a screen.

Logos books are robust digital resources. They’re built by real humans—not computer scripts—who know that the phrase “first verse of the first epistle of John” needs to link to 1 John 1:1; that’s just one example of the thousands of decisions that only a real person can make when building a digital text. The result? You get high-quality digital editions that work across all your devices and with all our tools.

As you can imagine, building these kinds of digital editions is very expensive for us. And it’s an even bigger investment when you consider that we ship thousands of new books every year. That’s why, before we invest the resources in building a digital edition, we post the book on Pre-Pub at an extra-low price to see if there’s enough interest.

Or, to put it more briefly, with Pre-Pub:

  • You get the chance to pre-order the newest books at the best prices.
  • We can rest assured that our investment in building new books will benefit the most people.

Six things you need to know about Pre-Pub

  1. You get the lowest prices. In exchange for pre-ordering early—and helping us determine whether we should produce a Logos edition—we reward you with a lower price. In just about every instance, the Pre-Pub price is the lowest price ever for a product.
  2. Prices go up, but they don’t go down. As books get closer to meeting 100% of their costs—and when they go over 100%—prices often go up. If you pre-order early, you’ll be locked in at your price, even if the price goes up later. This means you shouldn’t wait to pre-order something you’ve got your eye on: the price could go up next week or next month—or even this afternoon.
  3. When you pre-order, we don’t charge your credit card. A pre-order is simply a reserved spot at the best price. We’ll only charge your card when we build the Logos edition and deliver it to you, and we’ll be sure to remind you a couple weeks beforehand.
  4. You can cancel at any time. You have nothing to lose by pre-ordering something you’ve got your eye on and then changing your mind later. And by pre-ordering, you’ll lock in today’s price even if the price goes up tomorrow.
  5. You get to be one of the first people to get the new resource. As soon as we produce the book, we deliver it to you and it downloads automatically. You’ll be able to access it on all your devices the moment it’s ready.
  6. You get to help Logos decide which resources to produce next. Products that move over 100% get into the production queue. If there’s a product under 100% you want to see in our format, your pre-order is your vote to move it closer to the front of the line. And it’s not always enough to place a pre-order for yourself—it’s also important that you tell your friends. Even something as simple as dropping a note on Facebook or Twitter can get the few extra orders needed to move something into production.

How to make sure you never miss another Pre-Pub deal

Because Pre-Pub prices go up over time, it’s important to keep up with the newest books and get in early. But with hundreds of new books going up every week, this can be a challenge.

That’s why we created an email list to keep you up to date on all the latest products.

When you sign up, you’ll get one email each weekday morning with a list of the previous day’s new books. You’ll be able to quickly scan the newest products, and you’ll never miss out on the best prices.

Sign up today!





5 Reasons Vyrso is the Best App for Christian Reading

Vyrso App

The free Vyrso app is unlike any other app for Christian reading. Here are five awesome things you can do with it:

1. Access thousands of Christian ebooks

Choose from the latest, best Christian titles—mysteries, devotionals, thrillers, pastoral guides, historical romances, political commentaries, and more! Vyrso’s always adding new books (like a never-before-published devotional from A. W. Tozer), so you’ll want to follow the Vyrso blog for updates.

2. Take your ebooks anywhere

Vyrso is available for both iOS and Android, so you can bring your personal reading material wherever you go! Plus, Vyrso’s mobile-friendly shopping experience lets you navigate titles with ease, enabling you to get the ebooks you want—wherever you are. You can also read your Vyrso books in Logos 5 and on Biblia.com.

3. Get free and discounted ebooks

From summer bundles to pre-order discounts to special sales, we offer low prices on thousands of ebooks by your favorite Christian authors. Plus, we give away free ebooks all the time! Here are a few we’re offering right now:

Vyrso's Best Deals

4. Use one-tap Bible references

With a touch, you can connect Scripture to your everyday reading. Simply tap a Scripture reference in your ebook, and Vyrso displays the verse in your preferred Bible translation. This saves you time and makes it easy to connect the Word with your daily reading.

5. Search your library with ease

Search your entire bookshelf by topic, author, and more. Our cross-library search tool locates the quotes and passages you’re looking for in no time. Just enter your query—Vyrso will find every place that your word or verse is referenced in each of your ebooks. You can highlight, take notes, and copy and paste.

Oh, and did we mention that the app is free?

Take advantage of Vyrso’s powerful features: download the Vyrso app today!

Get up to $100 Off the A. T. Robertson Collection!

A.T. Robertson

A. T. Robertson was born on this day in 1863. Through November 13, you can use coupon code ROBERTSON1 to get up to $100 off the A. T. Robertson Collection, and coupon code ROBERTSON2 to get up to $15 off Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research!

What’s in the A. T. Robertson Collection?

You’ll get:

  • Commentaries on Matthew, Luke, Acts, Philippians, and James
  • Works on Greek grammar and textual criticism
  • Numerous lectures and addresses
  • A biography of John Albert Broadus
  • Robertson’s 1916 Stone Lectures at Princeton Theological Seminary
  • His works on the life and ministry of Paul

Check out this excerpt from The Glory of Ministry: Paul’s Exultation in Preaching:

“There is no joy comparable to that of witnessing the conversion of souls under one’s own ministry. This was the joy of Jesus and it is possible for us to have it. A ministry in which souls are not saved misses the chief joy of service. It is small wonder that, in view of the solemn responsibility of such a ministry, Paul asks: ‘And who is sufficient for these things?’ The Greek order is even more emphatic: ‘And for these things who is sufficient?’ He has sketched in the bold contrast of life and death ‘these things.’ The word ‘sufficient’ means ‘fit’ or ‘qualified.’ Many a preacher has felt his utter inadequacy to meet such a situation. He has arrived, but he is not ready for his task. The stoutest heart may well sink before the work of the modern minister.”

Grammar of the Greek New Testament A.T. Robertson

What’s so special about Grammar of the Greek New Testament?

At over 1,500 pages, Robertson’s Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research is one of the most exhaustive descriptions of New Testament Greek ever produced.

No English-language reference grammar since Robertson’s covers NT Greek in such detail. Though you should, of course, stay abreast of the latest advances by supplementing your study with newer grammars, this is a key exegetical tool, and—especially with these limited-time savings—a terrific value.

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Don’t miss out—this sale ends November 13. Use coupon code ROBERTSON2 to get Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research for up to $15 off, and coupon code ROBERTSON1 to get the A. T. Robertson Collection for up to $100 off!