Category: App Tips

NEW: Use Emojis in Your Notes 🎉

Posted by on 09/22/2017 in: ,

The day has finally arrived—YOU CAN INSERT EMOJIS INTO YOUR NOTES!
Some of you may have tried this before and it worked. But as soon as you went to look at the note on another device… emojis were gone! It wasn’t until now that we have been able to provided emoji that will sync across devices.

So, go on! Get carried away! Insert emojis wherever you please! Here’s how I used this new feature last week. Tap to enlarge the images!

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Newly Enhanced Sermons

Posted by on 09/08/2017 in: ,

Last week, we highlighted a new feature: enhanced devotionals! This lets you use select devotionals as reading plans in the app (for iOS currently).

But, we toss around that word “enhanced” a lot, and thought we should clarify. Have you heard us talk about our enhanced sermons? We have those! But it means something different than it does with devotionals.

Inside sermons, there are scripture references (at least… we hope there would be scripture references!). When we receive an eBook version of a sermon from a publisher, it contains normal text. When we want to enhance a sermon, our lovely formatting team finds the scripture references and adds hyperlinks! This will allow you to tap on the reference and open a pop-up window, reading the verse without leaving your eBook.

This feature also works the other way around! While you’re reading the Bible, open the Resource Guide and look under “Sermons”. If any of your enhanced sermons reference the passage of scripture, it will appear here!

What does this look like? Here’s some screenshots from my iPad!

ONE: GO TO SERMONS

TWO: CHOOSE A SERMON

THREE: TAP A VERSE

FOUR: READ SCRIPTURE + OPEN RESOURCE GUIDE

GET YOUR OWN!

Recently, we enhanced more popular sermons! Here are some titles that we are really excited about:

  1. Men and Women of the Old Testament
  2. Able to the Uttermost
  3. London, 1933-35
  4. The Young Bonhoeffer: 1918-1927
  5. Berlin, 1932-33
  6. Theological Education at Finkenwalde: 1935-1937
  7. J.B. Chapman Writings

Want to see them all? Head on over to our website to view all of the sermons in our store. We’ve even got some discounts happening!

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3 Highlights of the Android Update

Posted by on 08/30/2017 in:

Have you heard? We updated our Android app! This update wasn’t a little bug fix or adding one new feature. Hours and hours of hard work from our development team went into this update, and we couldn’t be more proud.

Maybe you have already updated the app and seen the changes. Great! We hope to continue releasing support videos and articles to help you make the transition. But if you haven’t heard about the update, here are 3 major highlights of the work we accomplished.

1) REDESIGN

We gave the app a makeover! The new design is sleek and clean—not busy or overwhelming, despite all the unique features we offer for studying the Bible in-depth.

We’ve reorganized a few things as well, moving the “My Stuff” features within the main menu (accessible on the far left). Also, the Search, Library, Verse Chooser, and Resource Guide all have a new look that will enhance your experience in the app. Hello, simplicity!


2) READING PLANS

We’ve made 100s of reading plans accessible from the toolbar! Scroll through the inspirational graphics and find a daily reading plan that will encourage you to grow spiritually. You’ll be held accountable and able to check off each day inside the app.

We have a variety now, but also hope to keep growing our collection! You can find reading plans to help you read through the entire Bible in year, learn more about Biblical topics, study the Bible chronologically, and more.


3) AUTOMATIC DOWNLOADS

When enabled, the new automatic downloads feature allows you to quickly import synced resources. You don’t have to find the resource in your library and initiate the download yourself—it will do it all on its own!


LEARN MORE

Check out these videos we made to see the app in action. Then, experience the update for yourself!

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How-To: Devotionals in the App

Posted by on 08/28/2017 in:

We have exciting news! You can now use some of our most popular devotionals in the same way you use a reading plan! You can “complete” your readings, set reminders, and more. We want to make sure you get the most out of this new feature, so we’ve written this how-to article to get you going.

WHAT IS A DEVOTIONAL?

First things first—we want to make sure you know what a devotional is and why they are helpful. Devotionals vary quite a bit. Some may walk you through book(s) of the Bible, some may cover a topic, and some may be filled with advice and unique perspectives. Although they differ in content, they all have the same goal: to help you grow spiritually, consistently. Devotionals are divided into smaller chunks so that you can read a little each day and process it.

HOW-TO: DEVOTIONALS

1) UPDATE YOUR DEVICE AND DEVOTIONALS

This feature comes with our most recent update to iOS (6.3). Make sure that your app is up-to-date before you go looking for updated devotionals! Sorry Android devices, this update is coming to your app soon!

Also, check your currently owned devotionals for updates. You can do this by finding the resource in your library. Does it have a little arrow on the cover image? Tap it! Then the resource will update.

One more note: did you just purchase a devotional? Make sure you download it to your library. If you don’t, then it won’t appear in the Reading Plan menu.

2) GO TO READING PLANS

In the main menu, choose Reading Plans. If you own a devotional that is updated with this feature, it will appear at the top of the Reading Plans menu. 

3) START READING

Select the devotional you want to read and then tap ‘Start Reading Plan.’ This will create a plan under the ‘My Plans’ tab for you to access later. Now you should see the control menu for your selected reading plan. It will show today’s date, your progress, plan details and options, and related reading plans!  You can tap ‘Start Reading’ to begin your first assignment.

What happens when you finish today’s assignment? A check mark will replace today’s date in the control menu.

4) CUSTOMIZE YOUR PLAN

There are several ways to customize your reading plan that can be found under “Plan Details and Options” in your devotional’s control menu. You can set it as your default plan, set reminders, and choose to either jump into the calendar-day reading or start from the very beginning.

DON’T HAVE A DEVOTIONAL?

Here are some of our most popular devotionals that have been updated to support reading plans!

  1. Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotional by Charles Spurgeon
  2. Through the Bible Day by Day: A Devotional Commentary by F.B. Meyer
  3. Year with G. K. Chesterton by G.K. Chesterton
  4. Streams in the Desert: 366 Daily Devotional Readings by L.B. Cowman
  5. Unto the Hills: A Daily Devotional by Billy Graham
  6. Grace For The Moment Daily Bible: Devotional Readings by Max Lucado
  7. A Year with C.S. Lewis by C.S. Lewis
  8. Jesus Calling 52-Week Discussion Guide by Sarah Young
  9. Olive Tree One Year Daily Devotional by Olive Tree
  10. Strength for Today by John MacArthur

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How-To: Vine’s Dictionary in the App

Posted by on 07/26/2017 in:

Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary is a great resource for those that don’t have any background with Greek or Hebrew.  Here’s how I used it in a recent sermon.

I read this verse in Genesis 39:2: “And Jehovah was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian.”

This passage got me thinking about the word “prosperous” in this passage, so, I opened the Resource Guide in the split window of the Olive Tree Bible App typed in “prosper”.

This brought up Vine’s under the search menu for tsaleach צָלַח, along with an article about the word.

The article shows some of the different occurrences of tsaleach in the Bible. All I have to do is tap the reference and the biblical passage appears in a pop-up window. This gives me instant access to other places the word is used in the Bible and helps me keep my Bible Study on track by not having to stop in the middle of my study to find the reference.

Another great thing about this resource is that Vine’s gives the Strong’s number (6743 in this case) and is tied into the Olive Tree Enhanced Strong’s Dictionary that is included in this resource.  This allows me to tap on the Strong’s number and see the definition of the word and the words in both the original language and transliterated form.

As you can see, Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words is a fantastic, easy-to-use resource that gives anyone access to the original languages.  With over 6,000 key biblical words that have reference to Strong’s numbers, there is no end to how it can help you understand the Bible and keep your study on track. Learn more about it on our website!

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Prayer Journaling with the Bible App

Posted by on 05/01/2017 in: ,

Everyone knows that the Olive Tree Bible App is great for reading and studying the Bible. But, did you know that it can help you with other areas of your spiritual life? With the National Day of Prayer approaching, I want to show you how you can transform your Bible App into a tool for journaling and keeping track of your prayers.

What is Journaling?

There are numerous ways to define journaling. In a spiritual sense, journaling involves writing out your thoughts and prayers as you study the Bible. Some people write with pen or pencil in a physical notebook, while others type them out in a journaling app or word processor. Just about anything that falls within those parameters can qualify as journaling.

Now, let me show you how you can start journaling within the Bible Study App because it’s easy!

Praying with the Bible App

Instead of showing you different methods for journaling, I want to show you how to do it in the Bible App.

To begin journaling in the Bible App, you don’t need to do anything more than create a note. If your note is based on a specific passage or verse, it’s best to make a verse or word based note.

To create a note tied to a verse, tap the verse number and select “Note.” Otherwise, if you want it based on a word or phrase, select your text and then tap “Note.”

Alternatively, you can also create a standalone note by opening the Split Window to the “My Notes” screen. At this screen tap the “Add Note” button and begin writing your note.

Organizing Your Notes

If you’re going to regularly pray and journal with the Bible App, keeping your notes organized is important. The easiest way to keep your journal organized is to use categories. I like to start by creating a top level category called “Prayer Journal.” To create this folder have the “My Notes” screen open and tap “Add Category” at the bottom. You can then further refine your categories for greater organization. For example, you can create subcategories for each year. Once the categories are created to your liking, you can then start placing your notes in each category.

Adding Tags

Tags are another great way to organize your prayer journal. As you write in your journal, you can add tags to your notes to help you find them later. You can create your own tags, or you can use the preexisting tags. The nice thing about using the preexisting tags is that they are tied to the Resource Guide. With the Resource Guide integration, your journal notes will appear under your tagged topics in Resource Guide when you are in a relevant Bible passage. This is a great way to keep old notes in front of you, while also using them as a part of your Bible study.

Try It Today

If you’ve been an Olive Tree user for any length of time, I haven’t shown you anything that you didn’t already know how to do. You know how to makes notes within the app. But, I hope I broadened your thinking about how to use notes within the Olive Tree Bible App. If you’re already using the Bible App to take notes, then start adding your prayers as well. If you haven’t made any notes, today is a great day to get started!

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Introducing Touch Bar Support!

Posted by on 05/01/2017 in: , , ,

This past fall, Apple announced an overhaul of their MacBook Pro line of laptop computers. The overhaul included the usual faster-thinner-lighter mantra that we have all grown accustomed to with new hardware upgrades. They even dumped the glowing Apple logo on the back of the clam-shell lid and replaced it with a shiny version similar to what Apple puts on their iPads and iPhones.

The highlight from the list of improvements was the introduction of what Apple is calling the Touch Bar. The Touch Bar is a long and thin digital screen that runs along the top of the keyboard and replaces the traditional row of F keys (function keys) that typically use this space on a keyboard. The genius of this screen is that it is touch sensitive and operates like the F keys.

Even more exciting are the infinite tasks this glowing strip of glass is ready to take on. For example, when playing a video, the Touch Bar can jump to any position in the video without needing to toggle the controls on the screen, move the mouse to the tracking bar, seek the new location and toggle the controls back off. With the Touch Bar, just drag the control to any position to instantly change the position in your video.

One of the strengths of the new Touch Bar is that Apple leaves it up to the app developer to decide what shows on this mini touch screen. Unleashing the power of the Touch Bar requires app updates to make use of the functionality with this new feature. We are excited to announce that the latest version of the Mac Olive Tree Bible App now has support for the Touch Bar. We thoughtfully considered what functionality on the Touch Bar would increase productivity and added it.

Touch Bar support for the Mac Olive Tree Bible App!

Bible Study Touch Bar controls

The main Touch Bar controls for the Olive Tree Bible App

The figure above shows the buttons we added to the top level Touch Bar. From left to right on the Touch bar, we added this functionality: history back, history forward, Go To, Search, increase font size, decrease font size and margin control.

There are other areas of the app that use the Touch Bar as well. For example, you can use this bar to add a note or highlight to selected text. When editing a note, you will find some useful actions on the Touch Bar such as changing the note’s category or adding a tag.

If you have one of the new MacBook Pros, be sure to try the new features, and let us know what you think. We are always open to suggestions and feedback.

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How to use the NIDNTTE in the Olive Tree Bible App

Posted by on 03/27/2017 in: ,

NIDNTTE picA standard and widely-used reference work for nearly 40 years, the New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology and Exegesis (NIDNTTE) has been thoroughly revised and updated to aid today’s pastors, students, scholars, and teachers in their study of the New Testament.

The NIDNTTE offers a wealth of background and information on the meaning of Greek words in the New Testament—as well as related usage in classical Greek sources, the Septuagint, Jewish literature, and more

Here are Five ways to use the New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology and Exegesis (NIDNTTE) in the Olive Tree Bible App.

ONE – Traditional Dictionary

Open the NIDNTTE in the main window. Tap the GO TO button. From here you can search for the word you are looking for as you would another other dictionary through the Table of Contents.

TWO – Traditional Dictionary Search

Similarly, with the NIDNTTE in the main window. Tap GO TO > Browse Dictionary > Enter the Greek Word you are looking for.  The Bible App searches the NIDNTTE for the Greek word. Tap the word and read the article.

These first two options require a working knowledge of Biblical Greek.  I’m sorry to say that my Greek is a bit rusty. Okay, it’s a LOT rusty. (Apologies to Dr. Walls, my Greek professor)  This is where the Bible App’s functionality and integration with original language resources really shines.

THREE – Strong’s Tagged Bible Integration

If you have a Strong’s Tagged Bible, using the NIDNTTE is a snap.  Open your Strong’s Tagged Bible in the Main Window (I’m using the ESV Strong’s Tagged Bible in this example). Tap the word you want to learn more about.  I’ve chosen the word “worship” from Romans 12:1 latreia. From the Strong’s Popup, tap “Lookup latreia”.

There you will find an article in the New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology and Exegesis.  Tap the NIDNTTE book cover and you can read the article on the Greek word in the popup window.

You even have the option to open the article in the Main Window or Split Window.

FOUR – Original Language Integration 

Along the same lines is the integration with Greek Parsed texts like the NA28 with Parsings.

FIVE – Greek New Testament Interlinear Integration

Lastly, the New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology and Exegesis integrates well with our Greek New Testament Interlinear titles.

The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology and Exegesis is a great resource for going further in your understanding of biblical Greek.  Thanks to our partners at Zondervan, we’re able to offer a special price for the fully updated and revised 5 volume set, and the 10 volume bundle that includes it’s sister title the New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis (NIDOTTE).  Hurry, because this is a limited time offer and we don’t know when we’ll be able to offer these discounts on these resources again.

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Three ways to use the Split Window

Posted by on 02/27/2017 in:

Whether you’re on a phone or tablet, one of the main Bible study features of the Olive Tree Bible App is the split window.

In this blog, we’ll show you three ways you can use the split window for your Android smartphone, tablet, or Kindle Fire.
(Click here for iOS.)

First, to access the three features of the split window, do this:

Now you will see three different features you can access in the split window.

1. The first and most popular is the Resource Guide

The Resource Guide is your personal Bible study assistant. It looks to the main window of the app and pulls in relevant study helps such as people, places, topics, cross references, commentary notes, maps, and more. The more resources you have in your library, the more powerful the Resource Guide will be. Watch this video to see the Resource Guide in action.

2. My Stuff

Selecting ‘My Stuff’ allows you to access your notes, highlights, tags, notifications and more. A personal favorite is having my notes open in the split window next to my Bible text. Whether you’re journaling during your own devotion time or taking notes from the text as your pastor is speaking, having the ability to take notes in the split window is a convenient feature.

3. Library

This is the easiest way to set up a parallel Bible or put your commentary notes next to your text. Simply select a resource from your library and it will be side by side with whatever title you have open in the main window. If it’s an ‘enhanced resource’ like another Bible or study Bible notes, it will stay in sync with the resource in the main window.

If you are a regular user of any of these features in the split window, we’d love to hear what your favorite is. Comment below to share!

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