Category: What’s New?

Three Ways to use the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity

Posted by on 03/09/2015 in: , , ,

encylopedia of ancientWe are thrilled to announce that Olive Tree is the first to release the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity in digital format!

This three-volume encyclopedia offers unparalleled, comprehensive coverage of the people, places and ideas of ancient Christianity. With Olive Tree’s Bible Study App you can access eight Centuries of the Christian church in just three taps!

Here’s three ways to use the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity in Olive Tree’s Bible Study App! (Screenshots are taken from an iPad 2 – click for a larger view)

The first way is through the Split Window and Resource Guide.  Open your favorite Bible translation in the main window and the Resource Guide in the Split Window.  As you read through your Bible text, the Resource Guide searches through all the downloaded resources in your library to find related Bible study content.

You’ll notice that the Resource Guide pulls related content from all of your downloaded resources.  If you scroll down the Resource Guide results, you will see the section headings “People,” “Places,” and “Topics.”  These headings give you the results of articles based on your downloaded resources.
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Tap or click on the person/place/topic you want to learn more about. I chose “Anointing” in this example.  The Bible Study App then brings you results from within the resources you have on your device.  This is where you will find the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity within the Resource Guide.

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You’ll notice that the resource has the words “Article on Anointing” underneath the book cover.  Tap/Click on the book cover and The Bible Study App will take you directly to the article within the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity. As you are reading the article, any Scripture references become hyperlinks that you can tap/click to view as a pop-out window:

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The second way you can utilize the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity is as a traditional dictionary in The Bible Study App.  Open the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity in the main window, and then just tap the “Go-To” button and scroll through this awesome resource as you would a hard-copy dictionary.  For faster results, tap “Browse Dictionary” and enter the term you are looking for in the search bar.

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The third way is to use the Bible Study App’s Lookup Feature. Tap and hold a word in the Bible text and an option menu bar will pop up.  If you tap the “Lookup” button you’ll get “hits” from your resources on just that specific word. From here you can follow the same steps as you would in the resource guide option above.

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If you’re on an iOS device, you can also tap the verse number and a menu bar will appear.  Tap “Guide” and you will get hits from your resources on that specific verse.  Then just follow the same steps as you would in the resource guide option.

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The Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity covers eight centuries of the Christian church and comprises 3,220 entries by a team of 266 scholars.  Using the Bible Study App’s lookup feature makes the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity great companion tool for many other resources.

Use the lookup feature when you’ve got the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture in the split window:

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Taking a Church History course and want to learn more about the Council of Nicaea?

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Reading a biography of St. Augustine and want to know more about the city of Carthage?

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Any resource you have in The Bible Study can utilize the content in the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity! As you can see, the Encyclopedia of Ancient Christianity is an extremely helpful resource for studying the Bible and ancient Christianity.  Right now you can get this amazing resource for only $149.99.  That’s $150 off the regular price!  Hurry because this is a limited time offer!

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God Is Passionate and Poetic – The Passion Translation

Posted by on 02/16/2015 in: , ,

From Guest Blogger: Dr. Brian Simmons, Lead Translator for The Passion Translation

God Is Passionate and Poetic.
It may surprise some of us to hear God described this way, as passionate and poetic. Yet the heart of God is filled with holy longings, passions which he expressed in creation and through redemption. And we would never discover such passions completely without the gift of God’s poetic Word, spoken to us in our own language. The Passion Translation is committed to translating the Word of God with all of its poetic nuance, flavor, passion, and truth—without compromising accuracy in any way. It expresses God’s passion for people and His world by translating the original, life-changing message of God’s Word for modern readers; it is every bit reliable as it is relevant.
God’s Word is potent, it has power to transform lives. As you read the Bible in this new, modern English version, expect to be delighted by The Passion Translation with new insights and a fresh understanding of all that God wants to say to our hearts. This is a heart-level translation, from the passion of God’s heart to the passion of your heart. Written by passionate men, the Bible is unlocked and understood more fully when passionate people read it.

God is a Poet—the Poet of Poets.
I’m so thankful for the poetic books found in the middle of our Bible. There is something about the Psalms and the Proverbs that keep our lives fueled with praise and guided by wisdom. It would be hard to imagine the Word of God without poetry, parables, and proverbs, because they unfold an entirely different dimension of the wonderful heart of God!
I have cherished the Psalms for over four decades. I contemplate them almost daily, for they have been my comfort and joy, leading me to the place where worship flows. When discouraged or downcast, reading these divine poems has given me new strength. They charge my batteries and fill my sails. In fact, the older I get the more powerful they grow: their thunder stirs me; their sweet melodies move me into the sacred emotions of a heart on fire like never before! The dark rain clouds of grief turn to bright rainbows of hope, just from meditating on David’s soul-nourishing songs.

The Psalms find the words that express our deepest and strongest emotions, no matter what the circumstances. Every emotion of our heart is reflected in the Psalms. Reading the Psalms will turn sighing into singing, trouble into triumph. The word praise is found 189 times in this book. There is simply nothing that touches my heart like the Psalms. Thousands of years ago my deepest feelings were put to music—this is what we all delightfully discover when reading the Psalms!

God’s Wisdom Is a Fountain—Come, Drink Freely!

Then there are the divine words of wisdom from Solomon, the book of Proverbs, written by the wisest man (well, maybe second wisest man) to ever walk the earth! Imagine reading a 2800-year-old book of wisdom: How many secrets would be uncovered? What kind of wisdom would be revealed? How would your life change as you drank in its advice? That’s Proverbs! These powerful words are anointed to bring you revelation from the very throne room of God—the wisdom you need to guide your steps and direct your life.

When you read Psalms and Proverbs, you’re engaging your heart and mind with the greatest book of wisdom and the greatest book of praise ever written, penned by two kings full of sage advice and God’s favor. God has given away his secrets in these books and he longs for you to read and receive them deep within. The Passion Translation seeks to express them in a way that would unlock the ‘passion’ of God’s heart, change your life, and launch you into the kind of life God has destined for you.

Dr. Brian Simmons is a former missionary, linguist, minister, and Bible teacher. As a missionary, he and his wife, Candice, pioneered church plants in Central America. As a linguist, Brian co-translated the Kuna New Testament for the Paya-Kuna people of Panama. He and his wife have birthed numerous ministries, including a dynamic church, Gateway Christian Fellowship, in West Haven, Connecticut. He is also a gifted teacher of the Bible who has authored several books and serves churches worldwide through his teaching ministry.

You can find Psalms and the Proverbs from The Passion Translation here.

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Look Inside: ESV Greek-English Interlinear New Testament

Posted by on 07/21/2014 in: , ,

With our newest App update to iOS 5.9 we can now offer Interlinear Bibles!  What’s an interlinear Bible you ask?  An interlinear Bible typically is the Hebrew or Greek text of the Old or New Testament with a literal English translation between the lines of the original-language text.  This is an extremely helpful Bible Study tool, especially for those wanting to dig deeper into original Bible language studies.

Here’s a brief look inside the ESV Greek-English Interlinear New Testament. (Screenshots are taken from an iPad 2, click for a larger view)

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Not only can The Bible Study App display the text in an Interlinear format, we’ve tagged the Greek word with the Greek Parsing and Strong’s Definition: Simply tap a word to get more details on that Greek word.

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We’ve also tagged the English Word:

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And the Strong’s Number:

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Searching for this Greek word in the text? No problem. Tap search and The Bible Study App will bring you a list of results for that Greek Word:

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You can also tap “lookup” and The Bible Study App will find dictionaries already downloaded to your device that contain more information on this Greek word:

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You can also search the Greek word in the same form as the word you’ve tapped:

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Or, you can search for all Greek words in the same form as the word you’ve tapped:

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We’re really excited about the release of the Greek-Interlinears!  To celebrate their release, we’re offering great discounts on the ESV, NKJV, and KJV Greek-English Interlinear New Testament Bibles!

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Windows Store App Update!

Posted by on 05/22/2014 in:

We’ve excited to announce a major update to our Windows Store App!

There are several ways that we’ve updated the Windows Store App experience.

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To name a few:

  • Multi-verse notes/highlights. The app now detects that whole verse(s) are selected and creates the annotation as book-chapter-verse instead of word-based.
  • Mass-annotation management.
    • Select multiple annotations/categories and delete all of them
    • Drag & drop selected items to another subcategory to move them.
    • The drag & drop works well when the destination is a sibling of the annotation/category, but there is also a “Move To” menu on selection to easily move annotations/categories anywhere.
  • Tagging annotations works a lot like the To/CC/BCC fields in modern email interfaces. That is, typing shows suggestions of existing ones along with the ability to create & use a new one.
  • Better control of removing highlights from the text – rather than simply a “Remove all” (that are included in the selected text) it is possible to remove individual highlights.

This update also includes:

  • Lookup selected text/word
  • Option to always scroll vertically
  • Finished the layout of Resource Guide, specifically how cross-references are handled.
  • Lots of squished bugs!
  • Many tweaks/enhancements/fixes based on reading user reviews over the last few months.

You can get the Windows Store App update for The Bible Study App by clicking the icon below.  If you like the update, leave us a review.  We greatly appreciate it!

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Sneak Peek: Archaeological Study Bible Notes

Posted by on 03/07/2014 in: , ,

One of the great things about our upcoming 5.9 iOS release is how The Bible Study App will be better able to layout text in ways that we could not before.  We wanted to show you a few examples of this using the Archaeological Study Bible Notes. (Screenshots taken from an iPad 2.  Click for a larger view.)

Compare the Study Notes in the Resource Guide in the Split Screen

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On the current iOS 5.5.4 App, The Archaeological Study Bible Notes require the entire width to display the images, and that the text cannot flow around the images. In the new iOS 5.9 App, note how the caption actually looks like a proper caption, and the text flows around the images as intended.

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Compare the Study Notes in Full Screen

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Text display is just one of the many advantages to this future app update.  Make sure you have our latest iOS update that paves the way for this future update by clicking the link App Store graphic below:

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The Archaeological Study Bible Notes and all enhanced titles for the Resource Guide are discounted this weekend.

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New Release: AHA – The God Moment That Changes Everything

Posted by on 03/04/2014 in:

Today we feature a new release by David C. Cook written by pastor and author Kyle Idelman.

We’ve all had “aha!” moments in our lives, times when a sudden revelation surprises us with insight. According to pastor and bestselling author Kyle Idleman, we can experience this same kind of “aha!” in our spiritual lives. With everyday examples and trademark testimonies, Idleman draws on Scripture to reveal how three key elements can draw us closer to God and change our lives for good.

Also check out this free live event Free Live Event featuring Duck Dynasty’s Beardless Brother, Al Robertson, and author Kyle Idleman sharing about their AHA moments and more. Click here to register!

Get this new title for The Bible Study App here!

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Sneak Peek: Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

Posted by on 02/28/2014 in: , ,

The Olive Tree Bible Study App developers are hard at work on our upcoming 5.9 iOS release (aka “Flying Eagle” as it has come to be called around here). You may have noticed a little teaser in our latest iPhone & iPad release that said “This update paves the way for a future App update…”

One of the great things about this upcoming release is how The Bible Study App will be better able to layout text in ways that we could not before.  We wanted to show you a few examples of this using the Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. (Screenshots taken from an iPad 2.  Click for a larger view.)

Compare the Introduction to 1 Corinthians

Current iOS App 5.5.4                                               Future iOS App 5.9

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Notice how the introduction text can now be displayed in the gray box to notate the 1 Corinthians Introduction (a feature mentioned in the commentary series preface).

Compare the Translation Text

Current iOS App 5.5.4                                               Future iOS App 5.9

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Notice the author’s translation of the text is in a different font type than the exposition text.

Text display is just one of the many advantages to this future app update.  Make sure you have our latest iOS update that paves the way for this future update by clicking the link App Store graphic below:

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The Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament and other top commentaries are discounted this weekend. Go here to get it!

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Sneak Peek into iOS 5.9 Greek-English Interlinear New Testament

Posted by on 02/21/2014 in: , ,

The Olive Tree Bible Study App developers are hard at work on our upcoming iOS release 5.9 (aka “Flying Eagle” as it has come to be called around here). You may have noticed a little teaser in our latest iPhone & iPad release that said “This update paves the way for a future App update…”

In my last post I briefly showed how The Bible Study App will be better able to layout text.  With this new technology, we can now offer Interlinear Bibles.  What’s an interlinear Bible you ask?  An interlinear Bible typically the Hebrew or Greek text of the Old or New Testament with a literal English translation between the lines of the original-language text.  This is an extremely helpful Bible Study tool, especially for those wanting to dig deeper into original Bible language studies.

Here’s an example of what the KJV Greek-English Interlinear New Testament will look like:

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Not only can The Bible Study App display the text in an Interlinear format, we’ve tagged the Greek word with the Greek Parsing and Strong’s Definition:

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We’ve also tagged the English Word:

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And the Strong’s Number:

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We’re really excited about this upcoming release for iPhone and iPad. This is just one of the many advantages to this app update.  We’ll be highlighting more sneak peaks into the upcoming iOS App release in the next few weeks.

We don’t have an official release date yet, so stay tuned by subscribing to our blog or sign up for our newsletter.

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Sneak Peek into iOS 5.9 Release

Posted by on 02/13/2014 in: , ,

The Olive Tree Bible Study App developers are hard at work on our upcoming iOS release 5.9 (aka “Flying Eagle” as it has come to be called around here). You may have noticed a little teaser in our latest iPhone & iPad release that said “This update paves the way for a future App update…”

One of the great things about this upcoming release is how The Bible Study App will be better able to layout text in ways that we could not before.  We wanted to show you a few examples of this using the NLT (New Living Translation) Study Bible. (Screenshots taken from an iPad 2.  Click for a larger view.)

Compare Romans 1:1

Current iOS App 5.5.4                                               Future iOS App 5.9

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You’ll notice that as you scroll through that section (and most other sections of the NLT Study Bible), you will find articles and sidebars, some of which are floating or using some nice formatting to make them stand out.

Compare Genesis 1:1

Current iOS App 5.5.4                                               Future iOS App 5.9

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The tables and articles are much laid out in a much more flowing format with the content.  This is just one of the many advantages to this app update.  We’ll be highlighting more sneak peaks into the upcoming iOS App release in the next few weeks.

We don’t have an official release date yet, so stay tuned by subscribing to our blog or sign up for our newsletter.

The NLT Study Bible is discounted this weekend. Go here to get it!

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The Truest Thing About You

Posted by on 02/01/2014 in: ,

Guest Blogger: David LomasTruest Thing About You

There are many true things about you. You may be a student. You may be a mom. You may love someone of the opposite sex or the same sex. You may make music or lattes. Life may be incredibly difficult, or you may feel like you’re living the dream.

These things may be true—but are they the truest?

Fried chicken is food, true, and so is a kale salad. But Jesus declared that He is the truest food. See, other things may have the appearance of being able to satisfy the deep needs of our bodies and even our souls, but Jesus declares that He is even truer food and truer drink.

So even among truths, there are true things and there are truer things.

Jesus wants to get to the truer things, the things so deeply true about you that they have the power to change everything else, including the merely true things.

What if the truest thing about you can cause you to reimagine your entire life? What if the truest thing about you can drown out all the noise and speak the words that you’ve waited for your whole life?

What the Gospel demands we ask is this: what does God say is the truest thing about us?

We aren’t always comfortable asking that question, and sometimes we only pretend to ask it. We give an answer we think we ought to give, an answer that identifies us as one of the good kids or a good Christian or a good citizen. Those answers are too easy. They’re cheap. All our lives we’ve been trained to answer that question in particular ways for particular people.

We define ourselves differently to different people. I’m a good worker, a good parent, I’m a failure, I’m beautiful, I’m hideous, I’m loved, I’m not.

And maybe you answer it differently when you’re by yourself, when you ask it of yourself. Dancing alone, driving alone, sit- ting at a cafe alone, tapping snooze on your alarm for the seventh time, the tenth time, because there isn’t one single reason you can come up with for getting out of bed on a sunny Saturday.

You answer it differently every time because you feel different every time you’re asked. A different person with every shifting truth.

Here’s the problem: you’re clinging to true things about your- self that simply aren’t that true. You’re elevating things that are merely true—or half-true, or true some days but not others—to the level of “truest.” I know you’re doing this—because I do it too. We all do. It’s the human condition.

Be clear: many destructive things we believe are very much true! We do fail, we did lose the money, we aren’t as beautiful, we were abused.

The problem is that we have pushed many of these merely true things down to the most fundamental layer of who we are and in so doing have built our whole lives and identities on them.

These things can be true, but we need to discover that they are not, and never will be, the truest thing.

David Lomas is the Lead Pastor at Reality/SF and the author of the book The Truest Thing About You (David C. Cook) which launches today! You can follow him on Twitter @davidlomas

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