Bible Commentaries can be an extremely valuable study tool. Many commentaries include historical and culture context, theological interpretation, and other resources like timelines and charts. The resource guide of The Bible Study App makes using commentaries a seamless part of your study.
In the below screenshot (click to enlarge) I have my Bible opened to Daniel chapter 1. The commentary section of the resource guide then shows me which of my commentaries have related entries to this text.
The Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary indicates seven entries so I’ll click on that commentary to see a preview of the those entries.
Since this chapter talks about Daniel and his friends being placed in a Babylonian learning environment, I’m interested in learning more about what that may have looked like. I then click on the third entry that talks about the language and literature of the Babylonians.
I can then read a fascinating article about historical Babylonian education that Daniel and his friends would have been exposed to. Thanks to enhanced commentaries like the Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary I can easily gain some amazing insight that helps me view the Biblical text in new ways.
Several great commentaries are on special now as part of the 12 Day’s of Christmas sale.
We recently crossed an exciting milestone…
One of the benefits of The Bible Study App is that you can install it on different devices and those devices have the ability to sync with each other. With the sync feature you can take a note or make a highlight and it will then be available on any device that has the Bible Study App. Not only do all of your notes, highlights, bookmarks, and tags sync across devices – but so do reading plans. Start one reading plan on your phone and read the next entry on your tablet or computer.
So about that milestone.
Our sync server recently crossed the 100 Million mark! That number represents thousands of people from all over the world who are actively reading and studying God’s word. For all of us at Olive Tree Bible Software this is a great reminder about why we love what we do.
If you haven’t yet taken advantage of the free sync service for your Bible Study App signup for a free account HERE to get started.
To celebrate this milestone we’ve also discounted some of the top items that are marked with notes, highlights, tags, and more. Go HERE To see them!
What do you really know about Christmas?
We’re influenced by our culture more than we realize. While the Christmas story is one we’ve heard for years, there’s a good chance that our knowledge of those events that happened 2,000 years ago are more influenced by our culture than the Bible.
How well do you know the Christmas story? Take this short video quiz and find out.
When Paul and Silas went to the town of Berea to teach, the book of Acts records their response to the teaching : “Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. “Acts 17:11 (ESV)
We live in an exciting time where access to God’s word is advancing faster than ever yet Biblical illiteracy in America is actually on the rise. We should look at the Bereans response and make it our own, being eager to receive God’s word and diligent to study it. The mission statement of Olive Tree is to “inspire people to connect with God and the Bible” and the Bible Study App is a result of that mission. So how can The Bible Study App help you as you study God’s word and grow in your faith?
There are many unique tools in The Bible Study App that help me study God’s word but if I had to pick one that has the most potential it would be the Resource Guide. The Resource Guide is found in the split pane of the Bible Study App. The Resource Guide allows you to easily access commentaries, maps, topics, cross reference verses, and a whole lot more. There are also many great resources available on the Olive Tree bookstore that can be easily added to enhance your study. Whether you’re preparing a sermon, bible study, or just for your own personal growth, you can literally have a library’s worth of content at your fingertips to aid your study and understanding of God’s word.
With all of these resources available, the Bible Study App then allows you to highlight and take note of those things that God is teaching you through his Word. By clicking on a verse or highlighting it with your cursor you can take notes and organize them into custom categories or color highlight for future reference. Because of the ability to sync devices you can not only sync notes between platforms but also have the confidence they won’t ever be lost.
As I continue to use the Bible Study App I’m finding that the tools it provides me with allow me to really dig deep into God’s word in a different way than I ever have – as scripture, note taking, and resources are all combined into one experience. Being a 21st century Berean is great!
Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words (MED) is a word study dictionary covering the entire Bible.
Here are three tips for Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary in The Bible Study App to enrich your personal Bible Study. (screenshots are from an iPad 2, click for a larger view):
ONE: RESOURCE GUIDE
Open your favorite Bible translation in the main window. (I’ve got the NIV open in this example.) Then tap the split window handle and drag it to a width or height you like. As you scroll through the Bible text, the resource guide keeps up with you and searches through all the books in your library for content related to the Scripture passage in the Main Window. If you scroll down the resource guide results, you will see the section headings “People,” “Places,” and “Topics.”
Tap or click on the person/place/topic you want to learn more about. I chose the topic “Fellowship” in this example. The Bible Study App then brings you results from Mounce’s Expository Dictionary.
You’ll see that Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary has the words “Article to Fellowship” underneath the book cover. Tap/Click on the book cover and The Bible Study App will take you directly to the article. You can scroll down and read the entire article without having to leave your Bible text. If there are scripture references in the article, just tap the verse and it will appear in a pop-up window. You can also tap the top right hand corner of the pop-up window to bring up the option to open these hyperlinked references in the main window or the split window.
TWO: LOOKUP FEATURES
For iPhone/iPad open the Resource Guide in the split window of The Bible Study App, tap the double arrows, then tap the “lookup” option in iOS, type in “Fellowship” and then tap “search”. This will bring up Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary article on Fellowship as we’ve seen before.
If you like reading your Bible “full screen”, try the integrated look-up feature. Tap and hold a word in the Bible text and an option menu bar will pop up. From here you get the options Copy, Highlight, Note, Bookmark, Share, Define, Lookup, and More..
If you tap the “Lookup” button you’ll get “hits” from your resources on just that specific word. Like before, just tap the book cover and you can read the article in the pop-up window, or choose to open in the Main or Split window.
THREE: INTEGRATES WITH STRONG’S TAGGED BIBLES
If you have a Bible Tagged with Strong’s, Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary is a great addition to your Bible Study library. This is also a great Bible study method to see how other versions of the Bible translate different scriptures. Since I have the English Standard Version (ESV) with Strong’s, I pulled it up in my main window and tapped “fellowship”. This brings up the Strong’s article and definition for κοινωνία (koinōnia).
From there I tapped “look up κοινωνία (koinōnia). This brought up Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary that I can tap then read the article on κοινωνία (koinōnia) in the pop-up window, or open the Main Window or Split Window.
This is how Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary has been enhanced for The Bible Study App to enrich your personal Bible Study. How do you use the Mounce Expository Dictionary in your personal Bible Study? What are some insights you have learned by using Mounce’s Expository Dictionary?
The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (TSK) is the best known and most widely used collection of 500,000 Scripture references and parallel passages. By using The TSK in The Bible Study App you’ll save tons of time and effort. No longer will you have to leave your original text to search for a reference.
Here’s how: (screenshots are from the Windows Desktop App. Click for a larger view):
Bring up your preferred Bible translation in the main window. (I have the English Standard Version open to Titus 1:5 in this example.) Click the split window button at the top right of the screen.
Click and hold to adjust the split window to your desired size. Next, click “Tools & Notes” to see the drop-down menu and choose “resource guide.” Please note that the split window opens to the last place that you had viewed, so if you were last in the library, the screen will default back to the library.
If you scroll a little further down the split window, you’ll find the “Related Verses” section. Since I have the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (TSK) downloaded to my PC, The Bible Study App has found cross references relevant to the Titus passage we are studying.
In our example, you’ll see that there are 44 related verses in the TSK from the Titus 1:5-16 passage we’re studying. By clicking on the TSK book cover, you can then view each set of cross references that correspond to each individual verse from our passage in Titus.
You can click the reference in the TSK and view it as a popup, or even split it out into a new window without leaving your original text. This feature alone will save you hours. Clicking the cross references for “Crete” in this example, I can see where the book of Acts references Crete.
As you can see, having the the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (TSK) cross references in The Bible Study App will help you broaden your biblical understanding quickly and easily.
What are some ways that you’ve utilized the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (TSK) to deepen your Bible Study?