Logos 4: Create a Family Tree

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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.

If you’re like me, you can’t keep up with all of the “begetting” in the Bible. In other words, what are the names of all of Jacob’s sons? Well, here’s an easy way to access the family trees of people in the Bible:

  • Open a Bible to a verse with a person’s name in it
  • Right click on the person’s name
  • From the right menu select Person the name (in our example, Jacob)
  • From the new left menu, select Biblical People

The Biblical People tool now opens displaying that person’s family tree as recorded in Scripture.

Related Tutorial Videos:
Biblical People I
Biblical People II

Note: Biblical People is a feature included in Logos Bible Software 4 base packages from Bible Study Library and above.

ESV Study Bible—Last Chance to Get the Pre-Pub Discount

ESV Study Bible

The ESV is one of the most important translations of the Bible to appear in a generation, and the ESV Study Bible is one of the bestselling print study Bibles of all time. The ESV Study Bible has been on Pre-Pub for awhile now, and we’re now planning to ship on September 15. This gives you a little more time to get the ESV Study Bible at a discounted price. If you haven’t yet placed your Pre-Pub order, this is your last chance!

Created by an outstanding team of 95 evangelical Christian scholars and teachers, the ESV Study Bible presents completely new study notes, maps, illustrations, charts, timelines, articles, and introductions. It has been endorsed by several prominent pastors and scholars, including John Piper, who called it “the rightful heir to a great line of historic translations,” and Mark Driscoll, who says the ESV Study Bible is “the most important resource that has been given to the emerging generation of Bible students and teachers.”

[Read more…]

Books and Commentaries for Lutherans

The Northwestern Publishing House Electronic Library: Collection One (100 Vols.)

For years, we’ve had several quality Lutheran resources available. Now, we’re pleased to announce that 100 volumes of books, commentaries, and journals published by Northwestern Publishing House are now available for download. NPH is the official publisher of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. For decades, they have published quality books and commentaries faithful to the Scriptures and to the Lutheran confessions.

The Northwestern Publishing House Electronic Library contains the entire People’s Bible Commentary, eleven volumes of sermons and preaching material, a collection of Lutheran Confessions, the entire Franzmann Bible History Commentary, and every issue of the Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly published between 1950 and 1989—that’s nearly forty years worth of scholarly material from the Lutheran tradition. All together, this library contains 100 volumes of books, commentaries, and scholarly journals—all at nearly 75% off the list price.

If you’re a Lutheran scholar or pastor, or you’re interested in commentaries written from the Lutheran tradition, the Northwestern Publishing House Electronic Library is a great way to dramatically expand your library at a steep discount.

In addition to this massive library, two additional titles from NPH are also available individually for download: Ministry of the Word and Biblical Christology.

We also just posted James William Richard’s classic on Pre-Pub, The Confessional History of the Lutheran Church. This book contains a detailed account of the history of Lutheranism through the end of the nineteenth century.

To see even more resources from the Lutheran tradition, check out the complete Product Guide for Lutheran Resources.

You should follow us on Twitter here.

Last Call: Enter to Win Seminary and Bible College Scholarships!

seminary.pngBelieve it or not, fall semesters and quarters across the country are about to begin—and practically speaking, that means more tuition payments and more book costs. We want to help with both!

In just a few days, August 10th, 2010 to be exact, Logos will award at least two $1,000.00 tuition scholarships along with a copies of Scholar’s Library through our Seminary Scholarship and Bible College Scholarship programs!

Yes, At Least Two: Spread the word!

Two people will win for sure, but we’d love to give scholarships away to four people. That’s $4,000 and four Scholar’s Library collections waiting to be claimed! You see, with most scholarships, you typically don’t want to tell your friends about it because more applicants means less of a chance of winning. With our scholarships, the exact opposite is true. The more of your friends who apply, the greater chance you have of being awarded the scholarship!

Everyone who fills out an application is asked how they heard about the scholarship. If a person puts your name in as the one who referred them to the site and they win the scholarship, then we’ll give you the scholarship too!

Spread the Word:

fb1.pngFacebook: Login to your Facebook account and post the link http://www.SeminaryScholarship.com or http://www.BibleCollegeScholarship.com on your wall. Be sure to include a line that lets your friends know what the link is all about. Something like, “If you are in seminary (or Bible college), here is a scholarship that might help you out.” You can also just click here to share SeminaryScholarship.com on Facebook or here to share BibleCollegeScholarship.com on Facebook.

tw1.pngTwitter: Post a tweet with a link to http://www.SeminaryScholarship.com or http://www.BibleCollegeScholarship.com. Not sure what to tweet? You can just click here and tweet this for Seminary or click here and tweet this for Bible College.

bl1.pngBlog: If you have a blog, you can help out in two ways. First, you can write a post on your blog letting your readers know about the scholarships. Second, you can add one of our web banners for Seminary Scholarship or Bible College Scholarship to your site.

Not sure what to write? Try this:

Need Money for Seminary or Bible College?

Tired of searching for scholarships? In just a few days, Logos will award at least two $1,000.00 tuition scholarships along with a copies of Scholar’s Library through their Seminary Scholarship and Bible College Scholarship programs!

The scholarships are open to all students currently enrolled in an accredited theological seminary or Bible College located in North America, or those who plan on enrolling within the next 8 months. All you have to do is watch a demonstration of Logos Bible Software and fill out a brief application. Once your application is submitted you will be entered to win a $1,000.00 scholarship AND a digital theological library that, in print, would cost over $8,000.00!

Apply before August 10th to win!

Going to Seminary? www.SeminaryScholarship.com
Going to Bible College? www.BibleCollegeScholarship.com

To What End Greek Grammar?

I like to peruse the Logos Pre-Pub offerings to see what we’re up to. We do so much that I gave up trying to keep up. The Pre-Pub RSS feed helps a bit, but I still can’t remember or keep track of it all.
When I was browsing some of the items we have on pre-pub, I noticed that we have a lot of author-based collections built around people well-known for their knowledge of Greek grammar and language. So I expected to see a lot of grammar-based titles (which always makes me happy, of course). And I did. (Yay!)
But I also saw that these guys had a lot of collections of sermons, essays, letters and the like. Here is a list of current pre-pubs that I cobbled together. It is probably not comprehensive, but you get the idea. I’ve also inserted links to Wikipedia (where they exist — what, no Wikipedia entry on E.A. Sophocles?) so you can get some more background on these people and their lives. Sometimes that’s the insight one needs to make a decision about whether their writings would be valuable to have inside of an environment like Logos Bible Software.

Upon scanning all of the books available in these pre-pubs, it was plainly evident to me that for many of these people, grammar and other technical stuff was simply a means to an end, that end being the preaching of the gospel.
If you’re impressed with Greek grammar stuff, that’s great. But this was my reminder to keep in mind that it is only means to an end. I’m looking forward to these collections going into production so I can see more about how these scholars apply their erudition to preaching, teaching and other writing about the message of the Bible.

You Think You Know Logos?

Mr.Black

Today’s guest blogger is Thomas Black, a Logos Forum MVP and a Pastor in Moweaqua, Illinois.

As a Logos Forum MVP, I think I’m fairly well equipped when it comes to understanding how Logos 4 works. But to be honest, while I understand the components, making them work together to get what I want doesn’t always come natural to me. When I discovered that Morris Proctor was going to be teaching one of his Camp Logos seminars close enough for me to attend, I signed up. I had attended an MP seminar for Logos 3 a few years ago, but L4 is a new creature altogether, so I was looking forward to gaining from Mo’s unique insights to the program.

Comprised of two days of instruction, the MP seminars are designed to take you from the basics of the program all the way to intelligently using it. I have to be honest, I didn’t learn much on the first day as Mo expertly pointed out each of the program interfaces and lead the class through several examples of the reports, tools and menus. Yet, the whole time I was never bored. Mo is such an excellent instructor that even the things I already knew didn’t bore me.

Over the two days Mo walked us through the elements of the program, beginning with understanding and customizing the home page. From there we covered studying with the guides, gleaning from the Biblical facts databases, using the Library, building collections, creating custom layouts, broad and targeted searching, and digging into the original languages with Reverse Interlinears and word studies—all while describing what all of the buttons and menus do, answering questions on the fly, and inserting enough expert tips to make the price of admission worth it no matter what your skill level with the program.

Another benefit for those like me who are eager to build their library even more: book prices. At the seminar, Mo has some great upgrade pricing available—and he points out some of the collections and books he has gained greatly from. I’m happy to say that he does this without sounding like a commercial.

So do you think you know Logos? I believe Morris could still teach you a few tips and tricks you’ve never thought of.

Look into Morris Proctor’s Camp Logos seminars and get ready for Camp Logos 2 which digs even deeper and is coming soon!

Don’t miss Camp Logos in your area! Spaces are filling up for the following camps, so register now:

Camp Logos West:

Camp Logos East (Weekend Seminars):

Related Video: Camp Logos Invitation

Logos 4: Quickly Access a Map

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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.

Do you ever find yourself needing to refresh your biblical geography as you come across places in the Bible? For example, you’re reading about Paul’s voyage to Rome in Acts 28 and you’d like to see a map displaying his various stops. Here’s all you have to do:

  • Right click on a place in the Bible such as Malta in Acts 28.1
  • From the right menu, select Place your place (in our example, Malta)
  • From the new left menu, select Biblical Places

The Biblical Places tool opens with the map, Paul’s Trip to Rome. You can now refer to the map as you retrace Paul’s ports of call in Acts 28.

Related Tutorial Videos:
Biblical Places – Dynamic Map
Biblical Places – Information
Biblical Places – Maps

Note: Biblical Places is a feature included in Logos Bible Software 4 base packages from Bible Study Library and above.

All about μέν!

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No, this is not a post about gender differences, but about one of the most under-appreciated Greek words you’re going to find. It is pronounced just like men in English. It is one of those words that causes translators fits, and is left untranslated nearly 75% of the time. Here is a link to the search in Logos 4 in the Lexham English Bible. Take a look at how many blank spots there are.

So why is it left untranslated so much of the time? Because it is what Robert Funk (the F in BDF fame) called a function word. It doesn’t so much mean something as it signals something. It’s what grammarians call a concessive adverb; it’s only purpose in life is to create the expectation that another related element is coming, with the latter being the more important of the two. Take a look at how adding the underlined words affects the following statements.

  • I really liked what you fixed for dinner.
  • While I really liked what you fixed for dinner…
  • Although I really liked what you fixed for dinner…
  • I mostly liked what you fixed for dinner …

If you have been married for any length of time, you might have a guess about what might happen next. All but the first statement have a function word that anticipates something more. In English, we would expect this to be a not-so-positive something. Not so in Greek.

The use of μέν creates what is called a counterpoint, setting the stage for a more important point that follows. It lets us know from the outset that something more is coming, that the initial statement is somehow incomplete. Here is an NT example taken from the Lexham High Definition New Testament:

The bullet in the first line stands in the place of the untranslated function word μέν. The and symbols delineate the counterpoint and the more important point that follows. John the Baptist is letting folks know that he is not the one they are looking for. He even does this in the grammar through the use of μέν. There is natural parallelism between the first and last part of the verse through the repetition of baptize, but the added function word makes this connection much more explicit. Figuratively speaking, it signals the first shoe dropping, creating the expectation that another, more important one is about to follow.

There are 179 occurrences of μέν in the NA27/UBS4 Greek text, and in the vast majority of cases, this word is left untranslated. Why? Because counterpoints cannot be signaled as easily in English as in Greek. We have to use clunky idioms like on the one hand, notwithstanding, in as much as, although, etc. Most often in conversation folks will say “While I liked X…” even though time is not the central focus.

So we have a fundamental problem here: how do you convey important exegetical information other than with a translation? You could use commentary or footnotes, but can be difficult to connect the comments to the text. There is a much more effective alternative, only available through Logos.

This week is the third anniversary of a bold experiment: The Lexham Discourse Greek New Testament (LDGNT) and the Lexham High Definition New Testament: ESV Edition (HDNT). These projects take the most useful insights from linguistics, discourse analysis and Bible translation, then annotate all occurrences of devices like μέν using an easily accessible set of symbols. Hovering over the symbol conveniently pops up a glossary description, so there is no need for memorization.

The feedback on how people are using these resources has been amazing! Pastors and Bible teachers are using them in their preparation because they tackle issues not addressed in most commentaries. Professors are using them to equip pastors to more carefully exegete Scripture, both in tools-based programs and as part of advanced Greek grammar classes. Bible translators are using the LDGNT to help mother-tongue workers to accurately preserve important features from the Greek in their translation. ESL teachers are using the HDNT to teach students the ins and outs of idiomatic English.

These projects are also the basis for the new High Definition Commentary series that is now underway, talking you through the text and providing integrated graphics for teaching.

In response to requests from users, Old Testament counterparts are in production, beginning with the Lexham Discourse Hebrew Bible (LDHB) and the Lexham High Definition Old Testament (HDOT).

Take the time to watch the introductory videos to see how the HDNT and the LDGNT will enrich your Bible study. The HDNT is English-based, the LDGNT is for those comfortable working with a Greek interlinear. Logos is pioneering not only discourse-based Bible study, but also innovative ways to meaningfully communicate it.

Related posts:

Logos Bible Software: The Master Plan

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Almost 20 years ago we started Logos Bible Software with the idea of building a tool to help people study the Bible. Over the years Logos has grown from two programmers in a basement with one idea to 200 people offering 10,000 resources for Bible study.

As you can imagine, our mission has changed along the way, too. Today it reads:

To help more people do more and better Bible study.

Okay, so the mission hasn’t changed much; we added some adjectives. We have spent a lot of time on the plan of execution, though, and I thought I should share it with you so you can understand what we’re doing, what we’re going to be doing, and why.

First, the fundamentals:

Logos is all about Bible study. We’ve released software, a paper magazine, and video training materials. We host a conference. We’re on multiple technology platforms. We’re on the desktop and on the web. How does everything fit together? It’s all about Bible study.

Logos leverages technology. We choose projects that leverage our technology expertise. Even if a project isn’t software, you can be sure our decision to do it was based on leveraging technology. Of course technology isn’t essential to Bible study; it’s just our particular skill, and a place where we can serve well. We’re following centuries of non-technology-based Bible study tools, and many organizations serve that need well already.

Logos harnesses the network effect. Each e-book we add to our system is extensively tagged and linked to all the others. The scholarly translations and databases we build are both made with and delivered inside our software; the books and articles we commission build on content we offer and help users go deeper with our tools.

Logos is easy. The real work of Bible study is inside the student. We just provide tools and resources, so we need to focus on equipping without obstructing. The easier we make it to get into Bible study, the more people we can encourage to do it. The easier the tools, the more likely people can do better study. Easy means excellent user interface. Easy means elegant design that engages the student. Easy means fantastic customer service so a technical problem or misunderstanding doesn’t get in the way of getting into the Word.

Now, the plan:

Access. An internal joke at Logos goes “If it isn’t in the Passage Guide, it doesn’t exist,” because resources aren’t useful if you can’t find them. Logos Bible Software makes it easy to access the resources in your library when and where you need them. Our “one license, any platform” philosophy means you can access your content on Mac, Windows, iPhone, iPad, smart phone, and the web. We plan to offer even more interfaces in the future. We are planning task-specific mobile applications that connect to your library and web sites tailored to specific data sets.

Your Logos.com account will let you access your content (and documents you create) wherever you are, with whatever interface you need.

Content. We are planning more content for Bible study. Our scholarly translations and databases already make it easier to study the Bible in Greek and Hebrew; our visual resources are an aid in understanding and teaching others. Behind the scenes, we are building metadata that links content together and improves discoverability. An extensive set of tools lets you create your own content, too, ranging from notes to highlights to sentence diagrams. Synchronization with your Logos.com account connects your content to you, not a specific device.

Community. We study, learn, teach, and share in community with others. We are planning new ways to connect with others around Bible study. We will have ways to collaborate on documents, aids to studying in a group, and tools that help you share the fruit of your study with others. You will be able to link your Logos.com account to multiple groups and choose what you share with the communities important to you. And because we know that Logos Bible Software is itself part of a larger community, we plan new ways to connect our tools with the work of others.

Access, content, and community are interwoven; each both enables and is enabled by the other two. The connection point is your Logos.com account. Already this single login manages your content on multiple platforms and identifies you in communities like the Logos Forums and Sermons.Logos.com. In the future it will be even more valuable. (Is your profile filled in?)

How will this master plan be manifested?

That’s the exciting part: we are going to find out together.

We have some ideas, though, and you can see them starting to come together.

Books.Logos.com shows a content-specific search interface for scanned books from a seminary library. (We plan to link Logos Bible Software 4 to this site in the future.)

Sermons.Logos.com shows how community-created content can be shared with new users on the Internet and (through a section in the Passage Guide) inside Logos Bible Software.

Biblia.com is an alternate interface to most of the content in your digital library that is easy to use over the web. For some users it may be all they need for simple Bible reading; for others it’s a way to check a book when they aren’t at their own computer.

Topics.Logos.com exposes the Logos Controlled Vocabulary to everyone, and lets users contribute web links and share reading lists that will automatically show up in Logos 4.

Almanac.Logos.com lets our community of users search and edit a growing database of information on the Christian world (particularly seminaries, at this point). This database provides a platform for connecting users by school, organization, denomination, and area of interest.

Api.Biblia.com offers the power of Logos Bible Software to other web sites, enabling mashups and creative ideas we never imagined.

And we’re not done. There are new projects coming, and we are experimenting and learning as we go. We need to hear from you about what you need, and your ideas about how we can serve and connect more people who want – who need! – to study the Bible.

I am excited about our “master plan,” and thrilled that we get to play this small part in The Master’s Plan. Thanks for sharing in it with us!

New Testament Textual Criticism Collection

New Testament Textual Criticism Collection (6 vols)

Anyone who has studied some New Testament Greek, or who has looked a commentary like the Word Biblical Commentary has heard about “textual criticism”. But the field is hopelessly technical, with all of its abbreviations and assumed knowledge.

More important than being able to read a textual apparatus (such as that of the NA27 or of Tischendorf) is gaining an understanding of the general nature of the problem that textual critics, through these apparatuses, are trying to describe. And that’s what the New Testament Textual Criticism Collection (6 vols) is all about: giving some background to understand the problem.

There are some books geared towards introduction to manuscripts and to textual criticism in general; there are other books that are collections of essays that describe the practice of textual criticism applied to problems found in the New Testament. And there’s even an excellent book on the Synoptic problem. Here’s the list:

  • Encountering New Testament Manuscripts by Jack Finegan.
  • Manuscripts and the Text of the New Testament by Keith Elliot and Ian Moir
  • New Testament Textual Criticism: A Concise Guide by David Alan Black
  • Studies in the Theory and Method of New Testament Textual Criticism Eldon J. Epp and Gordon D. Fee, editors
  • The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research Bart D. Ehrman and Michael W. Holmes, editors
  • The Synoptic Problem: A Way through the Maze by Mark Goodacre

The Synoptic Problem: A Way through the MazeEncountering New Testament Manuscripts and Manuscripts and the Text of the New Testament are good introductions to the sorts of documents and evidence we have for the text of the New Testament. David Alan Black’s New Testament Textual Criticism: A Concise Guide gives a good starting point in three parts (Purpose, Method and Examples).

Studies in the Theory and Method of New Testament Textual Criticism and The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research are both sets of essays dealing with the background and application of textual criticism. The essays in these books are routinely cited and are well regarded. They are important works in the field. I’ve read them, and they are excellent.

The seeming outlier is Mark Goodacre’s The Synoptic Problem: A Way through the Maze, but it is one of the gems in this collection (it is also available individually). Goodacre identifies what is known in Biblical Studies as “the synoptic problem” and, unlike many books that only describe a problem, Goodacre posits a way out of it. And (here’s the spoiler if you haven’t read it) Goodacre’s solution does not involve “Q”. I’ve read this book as well (on my iPod!) and it is well written, convincing, and enjoyable to read. You will learn simply by reading this book. It’s that good.