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.
As you well know, many words in the English language have multiple meanings. For example, trunk could refer to an elephant’s nose, an automobile’s storage compartment, a part of a tree, or a big case for saving things. The word’s context determines its precise meaning.
The biblical languages of Hebrew and Greek are no different. Some words have multiple meanings. For example, the Greek word kosmos, usually translated world, could mean the planet Earth, the people on the planet, or the philosophy of the people on the planet. When John 3.16 declares God so loved the world, which meaning of world is correct?
In an attempt to identify the contextual meanings of Hebrew and Greek words, Logos developed the Bible Sense Lexicon, located on the Tools menu in some of the Logos 5 base packages.
Perhaps the most useful application of this feature is in the Word by Word section in the Exegetical Guide. For example:
- Choose Guides | Exegetical Guide.
- Type John 3.16 in the reference box. (A)
- Press the Enter key to generate the report.
- Navigate to the Word by Word section. (B)
- Click the word world (C) on the right-hand side of the big gray box, which takes you to the entry for the Greek kosmos. (D)
- Notice the line of information called Sense (E), followed by a definition.
- Click the link to open the Bible Sense Lexicon. (F)
The Sense definition is a specific, contextual definition for the Greek kosmos. This word may have 12 different meanings, but the Content Innovation Team (CIT) at Logos believes that in John 3.16, it means world populace!
Currently the CIT has tagged the majority of Hebrew and Greek nouns, but it will be adding other parts of speech in the future. The new Sense line of information goes a long way in helping us disambiguate the meanings of biblical words.
Three cheers for the CIT!