Free Sermons in Your Bible Software

We’ve devoted a lot of words on this blog to persuading you to upgrade to Logos Bible Software 3. While it’s true that many of the features we talk about most often (reverse interlinear Bibles, syntactically tagged Bibles)are only available with a paid upgrade it’s also the case that we’re giving away a ton of amazing functionality at no cost! That’s right…

FREE STUFF

One of the cool, new features in Logos 3 that you can take advantage of right now, just by downloading the free update, is the SermonCentral.com search built into Passage Guide. This is just one free feature among many, but the one I want to highlight today.

Caveat: This feature is only free if you already own a product, such as any base collection (e.g., Bible Study Library),that comes with the Logos Bible Software homepage.

What is the SermonCentral.com search?

Logos has partnered with SermonCentral, a website that offers a massive database of sermons uploaded by users of the site. In Logos 3, when you enter a passage—say 2 Corinthians 9:1-5—and click “Go!” the Passage Guide report includes not only links to commentaries, dictionaries, maps, and reports…but it also shows you links to freely available sermons at SermonCentral!

These sermons were preached by people just like you—if you’re a pastor—then uploaded to the SermonCentral database to share with others. They’re great for inspiration, to get some ideas for organizing your material, gleaning illustrations, and to see how other preachers have treated the same material you’re working through.

(We encourage responsible use of others’ sermons, including citing sources where appropriate.For an excellent and practicaldiscussion ofthese issues, see the article Plagiarism in the Pulpit from Preaching magazine.)

SermonCentral Results in Passage Guide

Let’s take a closer look at one of the SermonCentral results that shows up in Passage Guide.

On the left you see the sermon title, the Scripture passage that it covers, a brief description of the sermon, and arating that indicates how many peoplefound the sermon to be helpful.

On the right is the contributor, date the sermon was preached, intended audience type(e.g., Believer, Seeker, etc.), and intended audience age range. Obviously, most sermons are preached to the entire congregation so many results will show “General, Adults”.

Blue text indicates links; clicking the sermon title opens SermonCentral to that sermon, clicking the Bible passage opens your preferred Bible to the beginning of that range, and clicking the contributor name opens a page at SermonCentral.com giving some information about the contributor such as denominational affiliation, church name, education, family, and other biographical details.

Click here to see the page that would open at SermonCentral.com if you clicked the linkto the sermon displayed above.

So here you have a huge source of additional content, integrated right into your normal workflow within Logos Bible Software. Just a click and you’re looking at instantly relevant material that you didn’t pay a red cent to acquire!

Go Pro!

As with any useful, free service there’s a way to get even more from SermonCentral.com by upgrading to a paid account. Upgrading to SermonCentral.com PRO provides a whole slew of additional features and benefits. They even offer a free 30-day trial to the PRO version so you can check it all out before committing the funds.

For details on updating Logos for free, anda comparison chart showing all you get with a SermonCentral PRO subscription, see our special SermonCentral page at Logos.com.


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Dr. Heiser’s Syntax Video Bonanza

OK, bonanza might be a bit of an overstatement…but the good doctor has done some “hard time” in our video production studio so that you might reap the benefit.

As part of our ETS/SBL marketing materials, Dr. Heiser, academic editor for Logos, created a number of videos demonstrating the syntax tools and resources in Logos 3.

Crafting these videos can be a painstaking process and, wow, that small room can get hot…but I hope you’ll agree that it was worth the effort. We’ve posted a few ofthe syntax videosto our Video Tutorials pageand I’ve included direct links to each video below.

How do these differ from the other videos we’ve done on syntax?

Here Mike takes the gloves off and pits morphology vs. syntax to show some very specific things you can do with syntax searching that are simply not possible with morphological tagging alone.

Mike calls syntax the “new frontier” in Bible software and says, “These video presentationsshow searches that are well beyond the reach of Bible software as you’ve known it.”

Or in the words of Walt Disney, “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”

Greek & Hebrew Syntax Videos

The Case for Syntax Searching

Syntax Search vs. Morphological Search (17:33, 17.5MB)

What syntax gives you that morphology alone cannot: better precision in your language research and refined demonstration for teaching.

Hebrew

Search Video #1:

Andersen-Forbes Analyzed Text of the Hebrew Bible (8:10, 9MB)

Compound subject in agreement with a singular verb across verse boundaries.

Search Video #2:

Andersen-Forbes Analyzed Text of the Hebrew Bible (5:55, 4MB)

Verb-Subject-Object (VSO) order vs. Subject-Verb-Object (SVO) order in clauses in the Pentateuch generally, and by Eissfeldt source (P, J).

Greek

Search Video #1:

OpenText.org Syntactically Analyzed Greek New Testament (15:23, 14MB)

Accusative noun or pronoun as subject of an infinitive, when the infinitive also takes an accusative object.

Search Video #1:

Lexham Syntactic Greek New Testament (4:25, 3MB)

Finding double accusatives in the Catholic Epistles.

Update 11/10, 11:05am – If you have limited access to the Internet, you can download the syntax videos as a zip file (46MB). Save the zip file to your hard drive, CD-ROM or other media. To run the videos, unzip all contents to a single folder, then launch each HTML file in turn to view the Flash videos.

Greek Syntax: Kinds of Mystery

I’m in a small group home Bible study, and we’re studying Colossians. My Father-in-Law leads the study, but he and Mom were on a short vacation last week so that means I got to sit in the hotseat. Our text was Col 2.1-7.

So Col 2.2 was one of the verses we looked at. Here it is, in the ESV:

that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, (Col 2:2, ESV)

The text has the words “God’s mystery”. One of the first things I wondered about had to do with what other types of “mysteries” are mentioned in the New Testament. In OpenText.org-speak, what this means is that I wanted to find what sorts of things qualify the word translated “mystery” (μυστήριον).

I’ve detailed this sort of search before (see blog post Syntax Search Example: What “Qualifies” another Word?), complete with video.

That’s cool and all … but what if I didn’t want to go to the trouble of creating a syntax search? Well, I could just run the Bible Word Study (BWS) report. One of the Grammatical Relationships examined for the OpenText.org Syntactically Annotated Greek New Testament involves qualifiers.

Specifically, it is the “Words and phrases used to further qualify (word)” relationship.
So I just ran the BWS by right-clicking μυστήριον and selecting the Bible Word Study option. Of course, if I was in a reverse interlinear, I could’ve just right-clicked. Here’s the list I retrieved:

Now, assuming you have Logos 3 and the syntax databases, you try it. Here’s my question for you: What kinds of “Kingdoms” are mentioned in the New Testament?

Go to Mt 13.11 in your ESV New Testament Reverse Interlinear, which mentions “the mystery of the kingdom of heaven”, right-click on “kingdom”, and run the right-click option for Bible Word Study.

When it’s done, scroll down to the Words and phrases used to further qualify βασιλεία. It should look something like this:

Watch out … now you’re using syntax in your study of the New Testament!

The Libronix Interface in Your Language

After my recent post on Chinese Bibles, I would be remiss if I failed to let readers know how they could install the Libronix DLS interface in Chinese or another language.
Libronix DLS and Localized Interfaces walks you through the process of installing and switching between the available language interfaces. The interface is available in more than 25 languages and dialects.
Since we rely on volunteers to do the localization, some languages have partial support. For those languages, you’ll see a mix of English and the target language within the Libronix interface.
As you can see from the graphic at left, the support for various languages ranges from 99.20% for Swedish (shout out to Thomas) down to 0.01% for Maori, with many languages left to do. As far as I know, nobody has attempted a Klingon interface, though there might be a couple people in the building who are capable.
Get Involved
We need help with the work of localizing the Libronix DLS interface. If you are a polyglot and could donate a few hours for interface translation, please get in touch with us. You don’t need to know a lick of computer programming: you’ll use a simple web form or Microsoft Excel to translate the English text in Column A into the blank space in Column B. Details here.
If you’re looking for a complete digital library in another language, either for yourself or a missionary you know, see www.logos.com/world. If you’d like to add individual books in other languages to your existing Logos Bible Software library, you’ll find them listed by language on our Product Categories page.

All in a Day’s Work: Making an Ugaritic Font

First, we acquired rights to the Conchillos Ugaritic databank. Then, we acquired the rights to produce several Ugaritic textbooks, grammars, and other helps as well. We put together a product.

Then we had to figure out how to support Ugaritic. [Cue scary music.]

[Read more…]

Greek Syntax: Searching for Granville Sharp

If you’ve studied NT Greek, you’ve likely heard of something called the “Granville Sharp Rule”.

If you’ve been around Bible software, you know that many folks use “finding Granville Sharp” as a sort of litmus test for the capabilities of their Bible software.

The OpenText.org Syntactically Analyzed Greek New Testament gives us an opportunity to examine what the Granville Sharp rule really is and to think about new ways to find instances of it.
Awhile back I wrote a paper for internal use here at Logos examining what “Granville Sharp” is and how to find it using the traditional “morphology+proximity+agreement” approach. This approach has problems because one must approximate relationships between words using morphological criteria (i.e. part-of-speech data), morphological agreement (i.e. terms ‘agree’ in their specified case), and word proximity (i.e. words are within N words of each other).

Then I examined finding Granville Sharp using the OpenText.org SAGNT. With the syntax annotation, you’re freed from approximating relationships with morphology+proximity+agreement and empowered to actually specify relationships that the syntax annotation encodes.

The 17-page PDF document linked below is that paper. It has explanation and screen shots of the queries, graphs and whatnot so it should help in thinking about how to go about isolating syntactic structures via searching the OpenText.org SAGNT. It might even help get the juices flowing for those considering the Logos/SBL Technology Paper Awards.

I’ve also included the two syntax queries discussed in the paper. I just tested them on 3.0b Beta 2, so if you have that version installed, you should be fine. I would think it would work on any flavor of 3.0, but why not upgrade if you’re not up to date?

Copy the queries to your My Documents\Libronix DLS\Syntax Queries folder and then load them as you would any other syntax search, from the Load … button in the Syntax Search dialogue.

Final IE 7 Breaks Logos Bible Software

Amazingly, the final release of IE 7 (released yesterday) introduced yet more changes that break Logos Bible Software.

The v3.0a update which we encouraged you to download yesterday does not work with the final release of IE 7. To fix this, we’ll be making an “emergency release” of v3.0b available later today. This will fix the worst problems with IE 7, and a more thoroughly tested release will be available in the coming weeks (which will also have the latest Vista compatibility fixes).

We’re very sorry for the inconvenience. Please check back here for the latest information.
Update 10/20: Latest Beta Fixes Compatibility with IE7

Zooming Syntax Graphs

Some syntax graphs are small. Others (e.g. Rom 1.1-6; Titus 1.1-4; Col 1.3-8) are huge.

Sometimes it’s nice to zoom in and out to get a picture of the whole structure, or the extent of the clause. And that can be hard to do using the zoom button in the toolbar.

But if you have a mouse with a scroll wheel and a control key … well, it’s pretty easy. And this video shows you how.

Now try it yourself: click here to open the OpenText.org Syntactically Analyzed GNT: Clause Analysis and get your zoom on.

Greek Syntax: Love in the Johannines

Most folks are very familiar with the first part of John 3.16, “For God so loved the world”. In the OpenText.org Clause Analysis, that phrase is a Primary Clause (PC), and the word translated “loved” (ἀγαπάω) is the Predicator (P) of the Primary Clause.

Now, if you wanted to find other situations where the underlying Greek word (ἀγαπάω) is used similarly, you could search the New Testament for all instances of ἀγαπάω. You’d find over 100 of them. Perhaps (as the below video assumes) you’re only interested in ἀγαπάω as it is used in the writings traditionally ascribed to John. You could search all of those out too; there are 72 of them (in 51 verses).

But if you did a syntax search and just looked for where a Primary Clause has ἀγαπάω as its predicator, you’d narrow your list down to 18 hits, and you’d know they’re used as the main verb in the primary clause.

Confused? That’s OK. I recorded a video showing all of this. It’s just under nine minutes long and is about 10.6 megs. Watch out, though, I’m getting over a cold so I’m a little congested.

The Power of Search…for Discovering the Theology of a Passage

Today’s guest blogger is John Fallahee, who works in our ministry relations department and produces free tutorial videos.
Your purchase of Logos Bible Software is essential for studying the Bible. You are saving countless hours in study time; you are going further in biblical research due to our easy two-step automation of “Enter Passage, Click Go”. You are adding more books to grow and customize your library and therefore have robust search results. However, at times, there is the need to narrow your search results to find very specific information.

Let’s say you own Scholar’s Library, have created a custom collection of books on theology, and include that collection in Passage Guide. When running Passage Guide on Ephesians 2:1, you get 22 hits within your collection of theologies. Alternatively, the reference browser returns 26, 22, or 12 hits depending on your search selections.

With the following “Power Search” example, we will reduce the number of hits even more in order to target very specific and relevant information.

The “Power Search” is like a laser targeting system, which can search through shelves of books, turn pages faster than any band-aid supplied librarian (paper cuts stain pages!), and can read faster than the best graduate of “Speed-Reader University”!

All you need for the “Power Search” are 3 things:

  1. a key Bible verse
  2. a key word
  3. a key book

Open Libronix DLS, click Search | Basic Search and type the following:

bible=“eph 2:1” within 1 sentence sin

Next, select a theology collection that you previously created or downloaded (see below) from the “in” drop down box.

Then click the search button. Your hits are now reduced to just 2 relevant hits. You see, when your search specifies a collection of books plus a particular verse plus your keyword in close proximity—your hits are reduced. Note: The closer the proximity (“within 3 words” vs “within 1 sentence”) the greater will be the reduction of the number of hits. Also, a Greek or Hebrew word as a keyword will also narrow your results significantly.

As an added bonus, since we searched our theology books, we can determine the theology of this passage with this method. If you click on the search results, and locate your position in the book, you will discover the category of theology for this passage. For example, Charles Hodge’s Systematic Theology includes a discussion on original sin under the theological category of Anthropology (The Study of Man).

I made a video that walks you through each step so that you can add “Power Search” to Your Study Tool Belt.


Flash Video, 2:50, 2.8MB


By the way, to satisfy your hunger for more “Power Search” meals, simply add a book to your banquet…buffet style: Logos.com offers more than 100 books on theology and doctrine, many of which are not included in the base packages.

Collection Files to Download

Right-click the file that matches the product you own, choose “Save Target As…” and save the file to My Documents\Libronix DLS\Collections (create the folder if it doesn’t exist).


Note: “locked books” can be searched but not viewed; add theological books to your library here.