What a Bloodthirsty Tyrant Taught Me About Advent

Herod the Great

We’re celebrating Advent by giving away dozens of free books and beautiful Advent Art. In this post, Ryan Rotz reflects on the unexpected Advent lessons he’s learned from a notorious historical figure.

King Herod the Great is known by most Christians for his role in the Christmas story in Matthew 2. Afraid of losing the throne to a “newborn king of the Jews,” Herod tried to manipulate the three wise men into telling him where to find the rumored child; when that didn’t work, he ordered the killing of Bethlehem’s baby boys.

But there’s a lot more to Herod than just this one scene. Herod the Great’s life is a Hollywood blockbuster waiting to happen. There are overthrown kingdoms, political maneuverings, family feuds, love and betrayal, and unfortunately, a whole lot of death. It is an R-rated story, to say the least, but it can teach us something very important about the significance of Advent—if we look close enough.

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Three Tips for Stirring Up Your Love for the Bible

3 Tips for Stirring Up Your Love for the BIble

I was sitting at a lunch table with some acquaintances. Acquaintances, not friends. I admit we sat there for a while staring at our food and waiting for the awkwardness to subside.

Kind of like me and my Bible sometimes, I’m sad to say.

But then, at that lunch table, I happened to mention a little something called “soccer.” I’ve never seen people light up so quickly, or go from conversational zero to 60 in such a short time.
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Do We Have to Choose Between Print and Digital?

which is better print or ebooks

The Logos Pros are here to help the church. And one of the things the church is processing right now, along with much of the rest of the world, is the role digital tools will play in their reading.

D.G. writes:

I seek out many of the volumes mentioned on Logos newsletters for print editions since I literally hate reading on either my computer or iPad. I have personally purchased over 25 volumes in the last three months—none of which are digital. Am I alone in this or is it a trend to which computer focused businesses should reconsider?

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The Meaning of Shalom and the Spirit of Advent

what does shalom mean

We’re celebrating Advent by giving away dozens of free books and beautiful Advent Art. In this post, Martin Weber reflects on the peace signaled by this season of anticipation. Martin is the author of numerous books, including My Tortured Conscience and God Was There: True Stories of a Police Chaplain. He currently manages SDA content for Faithlife.

As we scramble in and out of stores for holiday shopping, Salvation Army volunteers stand beside their red donation kettles, patiently ringing their bells. They invite us to remember those who shiver outside the circle of sharing. Many pastors answer that invitation by partnering with the Salvation Army, conducting funerals for homeless men and women without church or family.

During my last pastorate, I conducted one such funeral for a man named Scottie. With his drinking buddies scattered throughout the sanctuary, I eulogized Scottie’s life as of infinite value to God and to us all—no matter what his struggles and setbacks. Suddenly like a shout from hell, drunken hollering interrupted my tribute.

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How to Quickly Transliterate Greek and Hebrew

how to transliterate greek and hebrew

“Transliteration” is not the same as “translation.” Tranliteration brings just letters across the divide between languages (if indeed the languages don’t already use the same alphabet). Спасибо becomes spasibo; 國語 becomes Guóyǔ. Scholars transliterate when they are writing about a foreign language for people who don’t speak or read it; they also do it sometimes, truth be known, because they themselves can scan text more quickly in their “mother characters,” the alphabet they’ve used since childhood.

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The Most Used Words in the Bible

the most used words in the bible

I caved. Somebody sent me one of those time-wasting links you know you’re not supposed to click on if you want to get any work done. But I couldn’t help it. “Find out what your most used words on Facebook are,” the link said.

I was like Digory at the bell in Charn (for you Narnia fans). I had to know.

Plus, I had a feeling there would be a lesson about Bible Study in it somewhere. So I did it. For you, dear reader.

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How to Pronounce “Logos” and Other Important Evangelical Words

how to pronounce greek and hebrew words

Almost four years to the day before I came to serve the church as a Logos Pro at Faithlife, I wrote a post on my personal blog, “How to Pronounce ‘Logos’ in ‘Logos Bible Software.’” And since a big part of our mission is to turn you into a Logos Pro, the proper pronunciation of “Logos” is something we need to settle. Right here. Right now.

You see, there’s something of a schism among Logos aficionados, with two increasingly polarized parties, the LOW-goess (loʊɡoʊs) party and the LAH-gahss (lɑɡɑs) party. And believe it or not, this dispute has relevance for Bible students.

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Did the Angels Really Sing at Christ’s Birth?

angels in the Christmas story

This 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.

Since the Advent season is upon us, I’m going to devote the next several posts to Christmas themes. To kick it off, let’s talk about what angels do. My favorite Christmas hymn is “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing!” so a good while back I decided to find all the verses in the Bible about angels singing.

Here’s how to find them for yourself.

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How to Prepare a Christmas Bible Study on John 1

christmas sermon ideas

Today, I’d like to walk you through how you can use Logos to prepare a Christmas study, whether it be for your small group, or for the entire church. I’ll be studying my favorite account of Jesus’ advent: the Gospel of John.

But wait! The Christmas story is only found in Matthew and Luke’s gospel! I beg to differ. While those are indeed the two narrative treatments of the earthly events, John’s Gospel adequately recounts the spiritual and metaphysical side, as we’ll see today. Furthermore, John’s story takes us from Genesis through to Revelation.

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3 Ways to Be Sure You’re Headed toward Your Goal

Setting goals
When I started Faithlife Corporation (formerly Logos Bible Software) at 19 years old, I was aligning my mission and values with my future goals. Prior to Faithlife, I worked for Microsoft. After about two years there, I knew it was time to make a change.

No matter where you are—in ministry, seminary, college, or working a nine-to-five job—it’s always smart to sit down and evaluate your goals. Are you headed in the right direction?

In my new book, Start Next Now, I liken joining an organization to getting on a bus. Here are three simple ways to be sure you’re on the right bus and headed toward your goal.

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