Read Along with Your Faithlife Community

It’s easy to connect with your Faithlife groups using custom reading plans. Whether it’s for your church, your small group, or your Christian book club, you can create a plan around your schedule and needs. Maybe you already have a Faithlife group you want to transition into a reading group, or maybe you want to form a group around a certain text. Creating a plan is simple.

Once you have the group you want, it’s time to select the book. In order for everyone to participate in your group reading plan, everyone must own the resource you want to read. Just like in a face-to-face book club, you can’t read if you don’t own the text!

If you’re looking for a book to get started with, the Faithlife Study Bible is a great place to start. It’s free through March 2014, and it integrates seamlessly with the Faithlife community. Download yours now!

Here’s a quick step-by-step to get your custom reading plan up and running:

1. Open Logos 4.

2. Under File, select Reading Plan.

3. Select the text you want, how often you read, when you start, when you want to finish reading, and what group you want to share with.

4. Click “Generate.”

Now you’re ready to read with your group. A reading schedule will automatically appear in Faithlife’s “Today’s Readings” widget to keep you on track. You’ll be able to talk about the text, share your insight, and so much more from within your group on Faithlife. Get started today!

*Don’t have a Faithlife account yet? Sign in using your Logos account, or get started now with a free account. Then tell your friends and start building your online community.

Celebrate the Ministry of F. F. Bruce

In both the classroom and the pulpit, Frederick Fyvie Bruce stands out as perhaps the most recognized voice among mid- and late-twentieth-century evangelical scholars.

Born in Elgin, Scotland, on October 12, 1910, F. F. Bruce—as he is more commonly known—was educated at Aberdeen, Cambridge, Vienna, and Manchester University, where he excelled in Greek, Latin, and Hebrew. Bruce held teaching posts at some of Europe’s most prominent universities, most notably as the Rylands Chair of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis at Manchester University. He was a member of a number of prestigious societies, among them the Society for Old Testament Study and the Society for New Testament Study. Bruce was instrumental in the establishment of Cambridge’s Tyndale House, a research library for postgraduate students engaged in biblical research.

Bruce was a prodigious author, and it is in his numerous works that we find his enduring legacy. He wrote on a wide variety of subjects, including early Bible translations, Greco-Roman history, the Old Testament, and the New Testament. Some of his better-known titles include The Canon of ScripturePaul: Apostle of the Free SpiritThe Epistle to the Galatians (NIGTC), and three volumes in the NICNT: ActsColossians, Philemon, and Ephesians, and Hebrews. Bruce’s writings were born from a deep knowledge of apostolic Christianity. But he communicated this in a way that was easily accessible, making the world in which Jesus and the early church lived come alive.

This weekend, in celebration of F. F. Bruce’s birthday, we’re offering Paul: Apostle of the Free Spirit for only $29.95 with coupon code FFBruce12. Pick up a copy of Bruce’s seminal work on Paul—you won’t be disappointed.

Life-Changing Women’s Conferences

Last month’s Faithlife Women conference drew women from all over to hear some of today’s best speakers and authors. Presenters like Angela Thomas, Liz Curtis Higgs, Carol Kent, and Kasey Van Norman encouraged, empowered, and edified us as we gathered in Irving, TX.

The conference was such a success, we’re already planning next year’s Faithlife Women event! Keep watching FaithlifeWomen.com for information as it’s available and to read life-changing content from some of today’s top Christian authors and personalities.

Don’t Miss the Defined by God Conference!

If your husband works in ministry, come join us for the Defined by God conference November 1–3 in San Diego, CA! It’s the perfect opportunity for you to recharge your battery and connect with others who understand the challenges you face at a conference designed solely for pastors’ wives. Register today for FREE!

Zwingli, Lost Hero of the Swiss Reformation

As part of our ongoing Pastor Appreciation Month sale, we’re featuring the seven-volume Works of Zwingli for only $54.95 with coupon code PAM09.

It’s surprising that Huldrych Zwingli isn’t better known. Zwingli, a contemporary of Martin Luther’s, was an important figure in the Swiss Reformation.

Zwingli believed that faith was a personal experience that didn’t require sacraments and ceremonies to sustain itself. His work and his regular, exegetical preaching led to sweeping reform in Switzerland.

Zwingli spoke out publicly against

  • Lenten fasting
  • Veneration of the saints
  • The damnation of unbaptized children
  • Church corruption
  • And many other important issues

As opposition from Catholic Cantons grew, a Christian Civic League which included Zwingli’s city of Zürich was formed. Tensions grew between the two factions, and Protestant encouragements to evangelize within Catholic Cantons only inflamed tempers further. Swiss and German reformation movements sought to unify their efforts against the Pope but Zwingli and Luther fell out over theological issues relating to communion.

On October 9, 1531, the Cantons declared war on Zürich. With internal squabbling at a high, the Zürich forces were unprepared for the size of the army mobilized against them. On today’s date, October 11, 1531, Zwingli, along with 500 members of the Zürich army, was killed. The battle that took Zwingli’s life lasted less than one hour.

The Works of Zwingli (7 vols.) includes the powerful writings that propelled Zwingli to the forefront of the reformation movement in Switzerland. The addition of Samuel Jackson’s and Samuel Simpson’s works on Zwingli bring important historical context to Zwingli’s life and work. With coupon code PAM09, you can save more than 21% on this collection. Get your copy now!

Don’t miss out on the rest of the Pastor Appreciation Month Sale’s daily deals.

Lisa Chan Discusses Being a Pastor’s Wife

I was happy to catch a few minutes to chat with upcoming Defined by God speaker Lisa Chan. Lisa has been married to pastor, speaker, and writer Francis Chan for 18 years. I asked Lisa about some of the struggles pastors’ wives face.

Was Francis a pastor when you first married him?

Yes, he was working with a church. The church had gone through a terrible time, and there was a split with the senior pastor. We left on our honeymoon thinking maybe he would take over temporarily at that church, but in two months’ time, Francis felt like, “You know what, I think God wants us to start our own church and for me to really head out and lead.” And so Cornerstone was founded after two months of marriage.

What’s the biggest challenge pastors’ wives face today?

That’s an interesting question. I think one of the biggest challenges is authenticity. It’s so easy to slide into a position or a title and find your identity in that instead of being an authentic, godly woman—one pursuing Christ, walking in step with the spirit, and focused on what he wants, rather than what people want or think. We all know that’s part of the territory, but if you can learn to keep your eyes forward and on Christ, you can learn how to deal with it in a better way.

What advice would you give to pastors’ wives who are struggling with authenticity and feeling like they have to fit into a mold that other people put them in?

I think the best way is to not spend too much time thinking about it—usually if we focus on the problem, it just gets bigger and bigger. But if we turn our focus and choose to say, “No, I’m going to go after Christ, I’m going to grow in my walk with God, I’m going to learn to listen to his voice and do the things he asks me to do”—that’s really the only answer. And I know it seems really oversimplified, but sometimes our biggest problems have very simple answers. That would be my biggest advice—just follow after God and that’s what it’s all about.

My husband gives this illustration that if you’re learning to be a mountain-bike rider, you have to look where you want to go. In other words, if you look where you don’t want to go, like the cliff or rut, your bike will automatically go where you don’t want to go. So to stay on the right path, you look at where you want to go. And so for us, as pastors’ wives, let’s not look at this big cesspool of “Oh people expect so much of me, and this is so terrible”—you’re going to go that way—but if you just say “I’m going to be a women of God, a child of God after him,” all the other stuff falls into place because you’re just following after God.

What will you be speaking on at the Defined by God conference, and how will it help pastors’ wives?

I’m pretty sure that I’m going to be speaking about having a steadfast love, and I’m going to be sharing a lot that I’m saying here; I want to refocus and resimplify because we tend to overcomplicate, and I know that’s my tendency, and the Lord is just showing me how much I need to step back and simplify and do the next step that’s right in front of me. What does God have for me right now, today? I don’t want to worry so much about the future and get ahead of myself.

What would you say to women who are thinking about coming but are on the fence?

I know that as pastors wives, we hear a lot of messages—maybe sometimes we get to attend some with our husbands, we’re listening, we’re reading, so sometimes it can feel like it’s just gonna be one more thing on our plates. But I think the uniqueness of this is that it will be just pastors’ wives instead of a women’s conference or couples’ retreat, and so to me, that’s the fun of this. Wow, we’re all very like-minded, we have the same struggles, the same desires, husbands who are in the same place in ministry, and so there’s camaraderie and the ability to feel united with so many women who are in the same place. And I’m just asking women to consider how much of a blessing it is to come together with other women to understand exactly where you’re at.

Come see Lisa and more fantastic speakers at the Defined by God conference in San Diego, CA,  November 1–3.

Register now for FREE!

400 of History’s Most Powerful Prayers

Pastors often have occasion to pray in public. Whether for a special occasion, like a baptism, or a regular responsibility during a weekly worship service, they need to deliver prayers that communicate the state of their people before God.

In such situations, many us turn to prayers from the past. The Bible, especially the book of Psalms, is of course first on the list. The written prayers from leaders throughout church history, like Anselm of Canterbury, Clement of Rome, John Calvin, John Wesley, and George Whitefield are another resource. Prayers can also come from ancient documents and liturgies, like the Didache or the Liturgy of the Blessed Apostles. Though the writers of these prayers are no longer with us, their words still capture the thoughts, attitudes, and emotions of twenty-first-century believers.

The prayers of these heroes of faith, and many others, are collected in 400 Prayers for Preachers, with Slides. For those of us seeking the right word for any occasion, this resource has everything:

  • Material for service planning—All prayers are organized by theme (like suffering, reverence, or God’s faithfulness), Scripture references, and prayer type. This means that if you are preaching or focusing your worship service on a Scripture or topic, you can quickly find relevant prayers. If you are looking for a particular type of prayer—whether petition, praise, thanksgiving, intercession, or confession—this resource saves you the time you might otherwise spend hunting through your library.
  • Easy sharing—Each prayer is accompanied by a professionally designed slide that contains an excerpt from the prayer, making the prayer easy to share visually.
  • Updated language—For some prayers, archaic language (like “thee,” “thou,” and “beseech”) has been updated, so that the prayers are ready to use in a modern context.
  • Cited sources—Each prayer includes a bibliographic citation, enabling you to track it down in its original context.

When you need a prayer for any occasion, this resource makes it easy to find just what you need. Order it now at the discounted Pre-Pub price!

Focus on Christ with These Concordia Volumes!

Dive into God’s Word with the wisdom of the Concordia commentaries. Two works in this magnificent series are still available on Pre-Pub—don’t miss out!

Timeless and Practical

Conservative in their approach to biblical interpretation, the Concordia commentaries are ideal for pastors and students alike. Written with preaching pastors in mind, they interpret the text in light of its original oral, cultural, and religious context. They follow Martin Luther’s hermeneutical method—namely, interpreting Scripture with Scripture—to provide close, conservative readings of Holy Scripture.

As a theological commentary series, these commentaries steer away from textual criticism to focus on  Christology and spiritual application. The series testifies to John 1:1 in each of its volumes:

Matthew 11:2–20:34

Jeffrey Gibbs cogently interprets this middle section of Matthew, providing mature hermeneutical insight without overcomplicating the text. You’ll come back to this volume anytime you crack open the Gospel of Matthew.

Putting Christ at the center of his study, Gibbs explores two themes: Christ’s revelation of himself and the people’s perceptions of Christ. This leads us to consider some essential questions: How does Christ reveal himself to us through this Gospel? How do we respond?

Ezra–Nehemiah

Israel’s postexilic period is one of its most easily overlooked. Yet this uncertain era is one of Jerusalem’s most sensitive times. Jerusalem’s walls are smashed, its people deported and imprisoned, and its temple burned—so where is the hope of a loving and all-powerful God?

Andrew E. Steinmann shows us how, in these two powerful books, Jerusalem prepares herself for the Messiah’s coming. And with Jesus coming again, perhaps we should do the same.

Pre-order Before They Ship!

Make these commentaries yours while they’re still on Pre-Pub for $29.95 each—pre-order now!

Logos 4: Link to Images from Notes

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.

Several Logos users have recently asked me how to place images in the content area of a Note file. Currently, we can only type, copy–paste, or drag–drop text into the content section. We can, however, create a hyperlink to an image. Here’s how:

  • Choose File | Notes.
  • Name the untitled Notes document. (A)
  • Click Full in the upper-right corner of the document (B) so that you can see both the title and content of the note.
  • Click Add note (C) on the document’s toolbar.
  • Name the Note. (D)
  • Open a Logos resource to a page containing an image. (For example, type 1000 Bible Images in the Command box (E), and press the Enter key to open this book.)
  • Choose the panel menu (F) on the resource.
  • Click Copy location as: URL. (G) (Make sure to click URL.)
  • Close this resource. (H)
  • Click in the content box of the Note. (I)
  • Type some text in the content box, such as click here for a great picture. (J)

Insert Hyperlinks Example

  • Select (highlight) the text you just typed. (A)
  • Click the Hyperlink (chain links) icon (B) on the Note file’s formatting bar.
  • Execute a paste inside the address box (C) that appears underneath the icon. (This paste places the location of the image in the box.)
  • Press the Enter key to close the box.

Insert Hyperlinks Example 2

  • Click the new hyperlinked text (A) in the contentarea to jump to the image:
    • Windows: use Ctrl + click to follow the link.
    • Mac: use Cmd + click to follow the link.

Insert Hyperlinks Example 3

Even though the image is not directly in the Note file, it is just a click away!

Find Yourself in Mary’s Story

As believers, we all have a part in the story that God is telling, the great drama of redemption that he is unfolding. But sometimes we struggle to understand: What is my role in God’s story? We know now that Mary, the mother of Jesus, had a pivotal role. But when the angel Gabriel left her, after making his shocking announcement about her pregnancy, Mary must have wondered.

As central as her role was in giving birth to the Messiah, Mary remains a shadowy character in the biblical narrative. We hear about her only a few times in the Gospels. As one who often “pondered these things in her heart,” Mary rarely shares her thoughts with us—except once. Not long after her encounter with the angel, Mary visited her cousin Elizabeth, and many of her questions seem to have been laid to rest as she sang her hymn of praise, the Magnificat.

The eight-week study Mary: Devoted to God’s Plan follows what we know of Mary’s life, offers detailed information about the time and place in which she lived, and considers the remarkable transition she made from mother of the infant Savior to follower of Jesus Christ.

This comprehensive curriculum offers a rich set of resources for individuals, small groups, and entire congregations. At its heart is an eight-chapter study guide that provides biblical commentary, historical and cultural background, and thoughtful application. The complete curriculum package expands this study guide into:

  • Eight sermon outlines with dynamic visual media for each sermon, including an introductory video and a customizable slideshow of maps, illustrations, Scripture references and questions for reflection.
  • An eight-week guide for small group leaders, including visual media and discussion-question handouts.

Mary provides a model of faithful surrender to God’s plan. As the Advent and Christmas season approaches, Mary: Devoted to God’s Plan and the companion Complete Church Curriculum will challenge you to consider your part in God’s ongoing story of redemption.

Pastor Appreciation Month Roundup: Oct. 6

To celebrate Pastor Appreciation Month, we’re revealing a new sale item every weekday through October 26. If you’ve been watching the Pastor Appreciation Month page, you’ve seen the five deals released so far. But if you’ve missed them, here are the live specials for the first week:

N. T. Wright Collection (34 vols.)

Retail: $502.82  Regularly: $429.95

Only $339.95 with coupon code PAM01

The N. T. Wright Collection combines 34 of Wright’s most beloved works in a collection rich in theological depth, engaging in tone, and compelling in biblical wisdom.

Roy Zuck Vital Issues Series (12 vols.)

Retail: $158.88 Regularly: $139.95

Only $99.95 with coupon code PAM02

The Roy Zuck Vital Issues Series draws on the wisdom and research of dozens of esteemed evangelical scholars and writers to address the issues and challenges of contemporary living.

Bible Study Magazine

Retail: $29.70 Regularly: $19.95

Only $14.95 with coupon code PAMBSM

In each 48-page issue of this one-year subscription, you’ll get sound advice and enriching insights from pastors and scholars who have spent a lifetime applying the Bible to their lives and teaching others to do the same.

The Works of Dr. Robert A. Morey (33 vols.)

Retail: $458.49 Regularly: $299.95

Only $219.95 with coupon code PAM04

This collection contains more than 5,400 pages of material addressing a host of important apologetics topics, such as open theism, the core doctrines of the faith, radical Islam, cults, the afterlife, reincarnation, and the Trinity.

Tony Evans’ Understanding God Series (10 vols.)

Retail: $121.84 Regularly: $109.95

Only $69.95 with coupon code PAM05

Tony Evans’ Understanding God Series includes 10 volumes of Evans’ most significant works on Christian living. This set includes The Battle Is the Lord’sThe Promise, and Our God Is Awesome. These bestselling works are Evans’ guide to spiritual discipline, growing in knowledge and faith, and developing a deeper understanding of Christianity’s principal aspects.

Keep watching the Pastor Appreciation Month Sale page for new deals. All coupon codes expire October 31!