The New International Commentary Series on the Old Testament (NICOT) and New Testament (NICNT) are highly regarded scholarly resources that are always ranked at the top by scholars, pastors, students, and professors.
The Bible Study App makes the NICOT/NICNT even more dynamic. Here’s how:
Open your preferred Bible Translation in the main window and have the Resource Guide open in the Split Window. You’ll see relevant NICOT/NICNT commentary “hits” in the split window.
The Bible Study App also keeps up with the scripture passage you’re reading in the main window with sync scrolling. This means that as you move along in the Bible text, the NICOT/NICNT syncs to exactly where you are in your study. No more flipping pages back and forth. No more holding the commentary text open on your desk in one spot, reading through your Bible text, and having to go back and find your place in the commentary. You’ll save an enormous amount of time with this feature alone.
Search & Look Up Feature
Search the NICOT/NICNT for words or passages. Take “love” as an example. You can search the entire NICOT/NICNT series for where “love” is mentioned in the commentary series. You can also limit your search to the Old Testament, New Testament, biblical genre, or a specific book.
When your search hits are displayed, you can tap on the result to go directly to that passage. You can also copy the text to add to an existing note or add a note right from the search results.
Linked Reference Pop ups
One of my greatest frustrations in the hard copy world of biblical commentaries are the other biblical references within the commentary. For example, when I’m reading in Matthew about the beginning of Jesus’ ministry there are multiple references to The Lord’s Chosen servant in Isaiah that are pertinent to my study. With a hard copy, I have to open a different Bible and find each and every reference to read how the verse relates to what I am currently studying. This is time consuming, slows down my study momentum, and requires me to keep all of my study materials out and open, spread out over a large desk space. With The Bible Study App, the scripture references are hyperlinked within the commentary text. All I have to do is tap the scripture reference to read it instantly.
Related to this is footnotes/endnotes. Since the NICOT/NICNT is a highly scholarly work, there are a lot of references to other materials. In the past I would have to stop where I was in the reading, look at the footnote, then go back to where I was in the writing. This also was a huge time waster, and I would often lose my train of thought. With The Bible Study App, all of the footnotes are linked. Just tap on the footnote, read it, and go back to where you were without losing your place.
As you can see, the NICOT/NICNT within The Bible Study App gives you the best in scholarly work, while saving you valuable study time and tremendous effort. Get the NICOT and NICNT at 40% off the regular price this week through Monday, May 27th.
Sermon & Lesson Prep in the Windows Desktop App
One of my favorite features in The Bible Study App is the Split Window feature. However, when preparing for a sermon or small group lesson, sometimes two windows just aren’t enough. For example, when I prepare for teaching, I like to compare multiple Bible translations, study Bibles, commentaries, dictionaries, concordances, atlases, and my own notes I’ve taken on the Scriptures I’m studying. This is not a problem in The Bible Study Desktop App. All I have to do is use the pop out feature in The Bible Study App.
I start with the split window feature in The Bible Study Desktop App (here’s a helpful video on split window feature in Windows) by clicking the split window button . I then click the Pop out button at the top right hand corner of The Bible Study App. This opens a new pop out window in the resource that I’m already in. I can accomplish the same task by hitting the drop down menu and choosing “Open this book in a new window”.
Next, I choose the resource that I want to view in this new window by choosing it from the drop down menu.
I continue this process until I have all of the Bibles, Study Bibles, Commentaries, etc. open that I want to view for this study. With this option, I can view all of the resources I want at the same time and the multiple windows will sync with where I am in the main window of the app.
How do you utilize the pop out feature in The Bible Study App?
Olive Tree just released Paideia: Commentaries on the New Testament for The Bible Study app. According to the series foreward, the commentary series was named “Paideia”, which is Greek for “education”, to reflect:
(2) the fact that the New Testament texts as literary unities are shaped by the educational categories and ideas of their ancient writers and readers; and
(3) the pedagogical aims of the texts themselves—their central aim being not simply to impart information but to form the theological convictions and moral habits of their readers.
Although this series is intentionally aimed at “MA students in religious and theological studies programs, seminarians, and upper-divisional undergraduates” the authors do not go into so much theological detail as to leave the rest of us lost in a sea of research.
Paideia is also different in that the series is not a “verse-by-verse” commentary, but rather looks at the final form of the Biblical text in large units of thought.
As such, each commentary is broken out into three sections:
(1) introductory matters
(2) tracing the train of thought
(3) theological issues
Paideia also has several maps, photos, and charts that help make the biblical text more accessible to those without original language, biblical and extra-biblical historical backgrounds and preparation.
Here are a few Examples:
The Paideia commentaries are even more powerful with The Bible Study App. Use the split window to read your chosen Bible translation on one side of the screen while the corresponding Paideia commentary will sync with your reading in your split window. Or, use the pop-out windows to view the content separately. If you are using the Windows 7 app, this is especially helpful if you have two monitors.
When I first heard about the Archaeological Study Bible, I wasn’t sure what to think. My initial thought was how could there be an entire Bible devoted to archaeological study? And honestly, how could a study Bible devoted to archaeological study not be a snoozer? So, I got a copy of the Archaeological Study Bible and began looking through it. Wow, was I impressed (and wrong)!
The Archaeological Study Bible is a great resource. There are 520 articles covering five main categories: Archaeological Sites, Cultural and Historical Notes, Ancient Peoples and Lands, the Reliability of the Bible, and Ancient Texts and Artifacts. The Bible Study App enriches the Archaeological Study Bible. As you read through your Bible, the split screen and resource guide keep you synced with your reading.
Here’s an example of an article on the Zealots and Essenes (screenshots from an iPad):
Also included are almost 500 full-color photographs throughout the text. Here’s two examples:
Throughout the text there are detailed charts like this one:
At the end of the Archaeological Study Bible there are several maps that help you get an idea of the placement of biblical events:
The authors of the Archaeological Study Bible also included detailed book introductions for every book of the Bible. Other study tools include a glossary, extensive concordance and several indexes to help you find articles relevant to your study.
The Bible Study App enhances this resource when articles reference other articles within the Archaeological Study Bible. By tapping or clicking on the hyperlink, you can go directly to the related article, view in the Split Window, or view it in a Popup screen.
As you can see, you can spend hours learning the historical background of the Bible and the settings in which biblical events took place. The articles and pictures will give you insights into the Bible and make you feel like you could have been there.
The Olive Tree Concordance is a great resource to use within The Bible Study App to enhance your study and we have several good ones available with the ESV, NKJV and KJV translations. Why should you use a concordance in The Bible Study App? Read below to see what a concordance can do for you.
Screenshots are taken from The Bible Study App running on Windows.
Dictionary Look up
As you read along in your Bible or other resource, you can highlight a word and select “Look Up” from the menu of options. Immediately The Bible Study App searches your library for resources related to your selected word.
Click on the Olive Tree Concordance from the list of articles to see the entry for the selected word. Similar to a traditional concordance, the Olive Tree concordance gives you a listing of all the other places in the Bible where that word is used. The Bible Study App goes beyond the traditional concordance by creating hyperlinks for all the verse references, so as you click on one, a pop up window will take you to the Bible text, making a word study quick and easy.
You may have noticed that there is a number listed next to each verse reference in the concordance. This is the Strong’s number for your selected word. Strong’s numbers represent the word in the original language that was translated into your English word.
For example, when you look up “mercy,” you will get a different Strong’s number for the Hebrew words raḥam and ḥânan which are both translated as mercy in English, but have different meanings in Hebrew. When you tap or click on the Strong’s number h7356, the search will bring up all of the verse references in the Bible that contain the Hebrew word raḥam.
In addition to the Strong’s Numbers, you will also receive access to the Strong’s Dictionary when you purchase the Olive Tree concordances. Next to each Strong’s Number in the concordance is a hyperlink to the “Dictionary.” When you tap or click on “Dictionary” a pop up will provide the original language definition. For example, when selecting “Dictionary” for h7356 (raḥam) the entry is:
h7356. רַחַם raḥam; from 7355; compassion (in the plural); by extension, the womb (as cherishing the fetus); by implication, a maiden: — bowels, compassion, damsel, tender love, (great, tender) mercy, pity, womb.
AV (44)- mercy 30, compassion 4, womb 4, bowels 2, pity 2, damsel 1, tender love 1; n m
The dictionary information tells me that raḥam comes from the Hebrew root word with the Strong’s number h7355. I can find the dictionary information for the root word if I click or tap on h7355. The dictionary entry also gives a definition for raḥam and lists the occurrences of the word and how it is translated. There are 44 instances of the Hebrew word in the Bible, 30 of which are translated as “mercy,” four are translated “compassion,” and so on.
As you can see, the Olive Tree Concordances are much more than a list of cross references for each word in the Bible. With dictionary information tied to the original language, these resources are valuable tools for Bible study. Each concordance comes with a copy of the Bible in the selected translation.
Head to our online store to check out these new offerings from Olive Tree!
Using the WBC in the Bible Study App
If you saw our last article on the Word Biblical Commentary (WBC) you will know that this is a hefty commentary series. Because of the vast information included in WBC, it presents some challenges for usage in a mobile platform. Each section of commentary in WBC (covering a range of verses) is further divided into a number of sub-sections which each approach the entire set of verses from different perspectives like “Bibliography”, “Translation” and more. As I mentioned before, each of these sub-sections covers the entire range of verses for the section. If we were to attach a Bible verse location to all of them, there would be no way to distinguish in the verse chooser between the sub-sections and you’d be given multiple results for every location.
To avoid this problem, only the translation section is tied to a Bible verse location. This means that if you select a verse in the verse chooser, you will be taken to that verse in the translation sub-section of the appropriate section in the commentary.
Why the Resource Guide Makes WBC Even More Awesome
The best way to use WBC in the Bible Study app is with the Resource Guide. Each of the sub-sections has been individually tagged based on content, meaning that if you have a particular Bible passage open in the main window, the Resource Guide will display the commentary notes for that passage in the WBC for each of the subsections.
Using it with the Resource Guide like this makes it easy to drill down to one sub-section, then jump back up quickly and then back down to another sub-section on the same passage.
More Tips for Using WBC
When using WBC in your main window, you have the option to switch the Go To menu from grid view to list view. The list view will give you access to the full table of contents as outlined in the table of contents at the beginning of each printed volume. This is the recommended method of navigating from point to point in our version of WBC.
One more note on the WBC, if you have your main window and split window set up to track along with each other, moving the text in the other window will take you back to beginning of that section in the commentary. You can turn off the setting that sets windows to follow one another, which is recommended when using the WBC alongside another text.
As you can see, the Word Biblical Commentary is a massive collection of great resources enhanced by The Bible Study App. Right now, the entire 59 Volume set is on sale for $299.99. The sale price for the Word Biblical Commentary set is available now through the end of the day Monday, April 15. Be sure to check it out!
Do you have any tips on using the Word Biblical Commentary? How have you used it to enhance your Bible Study?