Logos 4: Phrase Searching

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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.

Years ago I owned a print book called The Phrase Concordance of the Bible which contained the locations of numerous phrases in the Bible. I really liked this book, but quite often was frustrated with it. Inevitably the phrase I wanted to lookup was not in the book. Obviously there’s no practical way to make an exhaustive concordance of every phrase in the Bible. Logos 4 allows us, however, to locate any phrase in any Bible, regardless of how obscure the phrase may be. Here’s one way to access your exhaustive phrase concordance:

  • Open any Bible to any passage
  • Select (highlight) any phrase
  • Right click on the selection
  • Update: From the right side of the pop-up menu click Selection your phrase
    • Example: Selection praise the Lord.
    • Reference, Greek Strong’s or another item may already be selected so be sure to click Selection.
  • Update: Then, from the left side of the menu click Search this resource

Your results appear almost instantly!

Please note this potential problem: If you select a phrase containing a footnote, the search will yield no hits.

Here’s one way to avoid the problem:

  • On the Bible click the Visual filters icon (three circles icon)
  • Select Bible text only

Now the Bible is displayed in list form with no footnotes or cross references. Phrase searching is now much easier.

Enjoy locating praise the Lord, and grace to you, and will of God, and


  1. Logos4 4.0b SR-2 ( does not seem to have a selection “your phrase” on the right-click menu!

  2. Hi Brian,
    Sorry about that. I have updated the text above to match the current wording on Logos 4.0 b.
    So now, if you were searching for the phrase “praise the Lord,” you want to hightlight the text, right-click on the selection and look for Search this resource in the right-click menu.
    Hope that helps.

  3. george osorio says

    I am happy to learn new short cuts to the program thank you

  4. Jerry Bush says

    Simple but very effective and useful. Thanks Morris!

  5. Tom Menges says

    I use this option often in studies for sermon prep and class room teaching.
    Great tool

  6. James Carlile says

    Thanks for this post. Very useful!
    I found one problem. The fist time I tried this search; after highlighting a phrase, I right clicked and selected “Search this resource”. It did NOT work. I found that, after right clicking on the phrase, it had reverted to the position of my last search (which was “Lemma”).
    It looks like it is necessary, after right clicking on the phrase, to select “Selection” before selecting “Search this resource”.

  7. Marvin Ball says

    It did not work!
    I tried to search for the phrase “Lord Jesus Christ” in 1 Thessalonians 1:1 (NASB95). Painted the 3 words — right clicked –selected “search this resource.”
    The search returned 717 occurences of “Lord” and “masters” and “owners” – etc.
    I did not see any occurances of the 3-word phrase. But I did not look at all the returns!
    Then I tried to search for the phrase “God the Father” in 1 Thessalonians 1:1 (NASB95).
    The search returned 1,312 occurences of “God” in the New Testament.
    I did not see any occurances of the 3-word phrase. But I did not look at all the returns!
    [Note: Neither of these phrases have footnotes.]
    So I assume –
    (1) The phrase search actually looks for appearances in the underlying language – no matter how it is translated.
    (2) I must have done somthing wrong in the phrase search request – but I don’t know what I did wrong!
    But a working phrase search would certainly be a very useful tool!
    Grace and Peace,
    Marvin Ball

  8. This works in the NIV but not on the NASB95. Only the first word of the phrase is searched. Any idea why and can anything be done about it?

  9. Hi James,
    Thanks for the comment. I have tried to duplicate your experience, but I cannot seem to do so. If this continues to happen, please feel free to call Customer Service at 1-800-875-6467 so they can make sure everything is functioning as it should. You can also email them directly at customerservice@logos.com.

  10. Tom and Marvin (above),
    I have tried to duplicate your results using the NASB95, but it seems to be working fine for me.
    Tom, that it works in the NIV but not the NASB95 is odd.
    For both of you, one of our techs suggests rebuildig your Bible index. This will reindex all the Bibles in your library, but not the other books. In the Command box, type rebuild bible index and hit enter. Although this is not reindexing your entire library, it could still take some time. I recommend doing this overnight or at a time you are not going to be using your computer for other tasks.

  11. James Carlile says

    I’m fairly sure that it’s not a problem with the program. It’s just that the menu that comes up when you right click the phrase has other uses. That menu has 2 columns. The left column lists such things as : copy; search the resource; search open resources; etc. In the right column is: Selection; manuscript; Lemma; Morphology; etc. If something other than “Selection” is highlighted, you do not get the search of the phrase that you are looking for. You get the results that others have commented on below: (that is, it lists each word separately).
    The problem is easy to duplicate. After you right click on your phrase, then select something different in the right column like “Lemma” or “manscript” or other and THEN select “Search this resource” You will get what I am describing. Hope this helps.

  12. Thanks for clarifying James. I’ve updated the steps above which will hopefully resolve any confusion.