Accidental Test Push Notification

Posted by on 08/11/2016 in:

You may have received a test push notification titled “Olive Tree Notification Test: Please Ignore this.” This test push notification was part of our going QA process in our efforts to make the Olive Tree Bible App faster and more reliable. We are constantly testing our apps and functionality to better serve our Olive Tree community. This involves testing and checking our features and functionality like our push notification system, to make sure they are performing smoothly and how we can make them better. Sometimes we make mistakes in that process and things don’t go as planned.

We sincerely apologize for this error and any confusion it may have caused. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us by emailing us at support@olivetree.com.

Continue Reading

Eight Years on the App Store

Posted by on 08/01/2016 in:

8years-in-app

The Apple App store first launched in July of 2008 and our Bible App was available for iOS devices the following month. This month we celebrate 8 years of being in the App Store and look forward to continuing on for many more years to come. As a part of our celebrating we’ve discounted select titles that we hope will be a blessing to you and empower your continued growth and understanding of God’s word!

Go here to see them now!

Continue Reading

Parallel Bibles in the Olive Tree Bible App

Posted by on 07/27/2016 in: ,

Parallel Bibles are a very useful way to compare two different Bible translations. In print you can often find parallel Bibles that have the English language on one side and another language on the other side or possibly a more literal translation one side and a more dynamic (sometimes called paraphrase) version on the other. With our Bible App you can easily setup your own customized parallel Bible and in this blog we’ll show you how.

books-on-table edit

The screenshots below are from an iPad Mini but the process works almost identically on Android devices. The options described below require the split window to be open and assume a Bible is already open in the main window.

Option #1: Library View

The first way to create a parallel Bible is through the library view. If your split window is currently open to Resource Guide or Notes you can return to the library view by tapping the more button (circle with 3 dots) found in the upper left in the split window. Tapping Open Library will open a list of your available resources.

IMG_0853

Now select a different Bible translation to open in the split window. In the screenshot below I already had the NIV opened in the main window and I’ve selected the ESV to have open in the split window.

IMG_0854

With both Bibles now open, you can read the Bible in your main window and your secondary Bible will stay in sync and follow along.

Option #2: Resource Guide

If you’re someone who frequently uses Resource Guide, this second method is quick and easy. With Resource Guide open, scroll to your Bibles section. Here you are presented with a list of all the Bibles in your library that contain the passage you currently have open in the main window. Select the Bible you want to read and it opens to the same location as the main window. Like in the first method, this Bible will stay in sync as you scroll through the Bible in the main window.

IMG_0149

IMG_0150

Bonus Option: Even More Bibles on Desktop

Do you use our Windows desktop or Mac app? If so, we have a bonus method that allows you to open multiple parallel Bibles simultaneously. First, access your first parallel Bible by using one of the methods outlined above. Once you have your Bible open in the split window, you can then click the Popout Window button. This will open a copy of the Bible (or any resource) in a popout window that you can resize and move anywhere on the screen.

resource-guide_popout

Now go back to the split window and choose a different Bible. At this point you will have three different Bibles open to the same location that sync with the main window. Repeat these steps to open up as many translations as you would like. Below is a screenshot with four different translations open.

parallel-desktop

Why Multiple Translations?

Now that you know how to create a parallel Bible in Bible App, why would you want to use one?
Here are some ideas:

  • Read a more literal translation (KJV, ESV, NASB) alongside a more dynamic one (NLT, Message, TLB) to get a better idea of what the text says
  • Have an English translation open alongside the a different language text
  • Compare commentaries or dictionaries by having those resources open instead of a Bible

See available Bibles for the Olive Tree Bible App here!

Continue Reading

Look Inside: NIV Beautiful Word Bible

Posted by on 07/25/2016 in:

Woman scroll down screen of digital tablet. And smartphone is on

The NIV Beautiful Word Bible features five hundred familiar verses chosen from every book of the Bible. Verses from beloved stories, prophecies, and promises are artfully illustrated in full color to enhance your devotional experience in God’s Word, and perhaps even inspire you to take up your art pad and colored pencils and create your own unique Scripture artwork.

image1

To read the text and view the illustrations in the Olive Tree Bible App, simply select the NIV Beautiful Word Bible as your preferred Bible translation in the main window. Tapping on any of the images will bring it up in its own window, where you can pinch to zoom in. The Bible text has been designed for viewing in a single pane. This allows you to scroll up and down to see the images inline and in context with the verse from which they are drawn. Or use the Verse Chooser to go directly to any Bible chapter and verse you like. And as with any Olive Tree Bible text, you can add your own notes, highlight words or verses, and bookmark your favorite passages.

image1[1]

And the visually appealing illustrated Bible verses from the NIV Beautiful Word Bible are available for you in the Olive Tree Bible App, even if you have a different Bible text open. Just tap and drag the split window to access the Resource Guide in the App.

image3

Whenever the NIV Beautiful Word Bible has an illustration for a verse in your main window, that illustration will appear in the Resource Guide (under Images). Just tap to view it in the Resource Guide.

image4

Add the NIV Beautiful Word Bible to your library today!

Continue Reading

Look Inside: Thompson Chain Reference Study Bible

Posted by on 07/21/2016 in: ,

By Olive Tree Employee: Genny Gager

Bible commentaries and study notes are great tools for understanding what the Bible has to say to us today. Often overlooked, however, is the value that using scripture to understand scripture can bring. God’s inspired word is a complex tapestry of themes all woven together, and the development of those themes can provide us with insight into the relevant message of the Bible for today’s readers.

Finding our way around these themes can be a daunting task, especially given the variety of subjects covered in the Bible. A word search can be helpful, but it can give an incomplete picture due to the complexity of language and the context in which words are used. The great news is that Olive Tree offers the Thompson Chain Reference Study Bible, which links various themes together as they are touched upon and developed throughout Scripture. The very heart of this product is the thematic chains that number in the thousands, and people at all stages of learning about the Bible have used it in the 100 years since its initial release. The Thompson Chain resource is also a great study Bible, offering cross references, book outlines, book introductions, maps, and harmonies to aid us in our study.

We’ve put quite a bit of attention into converting the rich topical content so it can be used in the Bible Study app. Our goal was to make navigating the famous topical chains easy and intuitive and to allow quick access to the additional materials as well.

We’re going to walk through a quick example of how the Bible Study App can make navigating the Thompson Chain Reference Study Bible enjoyable and easy. The example uses and refers to the iPad version of our software. We’ve designed this resource to work seamlessly with the built-in resource guide.  Although we’ll be relying on the iPad version in our example, other versions of our app will have similar functionality.

If you want to follow along with the example, bring 1 Samuel chapter 17 up in your Bible. With everything set up, the screen will look similar to this (your screen may look a little different depending on what resources you have and how you have your resource guide set up):

To activate the chains, tap the name of the Thompson Chain under the commentaries section of your resource guide. Your split-window view will change to a listing of verses directly related to your location:

Choose the verse you want by tapping on it in the split window. In this example we’ll choose 17:4:

You can now choose the theme you want to explore in the list under that verse, for instance choosing 1409, Giants, results in the following:

Now it’s as easy as tapping on each verse reference to get a popup where you can read the appropriate Bible text.

When you are done with this chain, you can tap the back arrow at the upper left corner of the split screen to return to the verse menu.

The wealth of other information in the Thompson Chain resource is easily available as well. Return to the base screen of the resource guide by tapping the back arrow until your screen looks similar to this:

Notice the entries for the Thompson Chain located in the Introductions and Outlines sections. Just tap on an entry to quickly access the information.
Finally, some other gems are available but a little less obvious. For this example, tap the David entry under the People section. After you’ve tapped on it, the screen will look like this:

The Resource Guide automatically shows you that there is an article on David available in the Thompson Chain resource. Tap on the article to read it.

There is also an image on the Journeys and Life of David under the Images section that you can open.

Tap the “double arrows” to make the image full screen, and pinch and zoom to make the image larger:

We hope that this quick example will help you explore and learn about the Bible with the Thompson Chain Reference Study Bible, a trusted resource that has been used by generations of Bible enthusiasts. When used in combination with the Bible Study App, you are just a few taps away from unlocking the themes of the Bible as they weave in and out of the entire text.

Right now you can get the Thompson Chain Reference Study Bible for 40% off the regular price.

Continue Reading

Works of William Perkins

Posted by on 07/19/2016 in: ,

william perkins banner

By Olive Tree Employee: Harold Coleman

Who is William Perkins and why are his writings relevant to us today? These are fair questions to ask about a man who wrote over 400 years ago. His life and writings spanned the early decades of English Protestantism during the Elizabethan period. He is thought by many to be the father of Puritanism, not as its founder but as its defender and as a developer of its theological positions. As a moderate Puritan, he worked from within the Church of England, slowly influencing the church towards Protestantism. His writings were so popular that the numbers of copies sold often outnumbered many contemporary Reformed writers combined.

Perkins held to the doctrine of Solus Christus (Christ alone) and Sola Scriptura (Scripture alone) as the twin foundations of biblical preaching. He was an advocate of unclear Scriptures being interpreted by clearer portions of Scripture, rather than by tradition or speculation. He was a strong proponent of double predestination, which was criticized by his contemporary, Jacobus Arminius. As a reformer, he speaks to our use of Scripture today. Is understanding Christ the focus of our study in the Old as well as the New Testament? Do we rely on traditional understandings of tough passages or do we dig into Scripture in light of other Scriptures that are clearer?

Volume one of his works contains three sections: “A Harmony of the Books of the Old and New Testament”, “The Combat between Christ and the Devil”, and “A Godly and Learned Exposition of Christ’s Sermon on the Mount”.

A Harmony of the Books of the Old and New Testament lays out how biblical history intersects with the history of the world during biblical times. Perkins believed in the inerrancy of Scripture and that the Holy Spirit accurately represented God’s intent through Scripture’s human authors. This section begins with an unbroken progression of years from Adam to Solomon. At that point, he could tie in secular historical facts as they were known in his time in order to date the Bible from Solomon through the New Testament book of Revelation. With updated archaeological information, modern readers may have different understandings of those dates, but seeing Perkins’ dates is informative.

will perkins

What I find most important in this section is the extensive timeline of events through biblical history that correspond to chapters about these events. These chapters are particularly helpful in putting together the bigger picture of 2 Samuel, 1 & 2 Kings, and 1 & 2 Chronicles. These scriptural links can be accessed through the commentary notes in the Resource Guide as you study passages of the Bible in your main window. By adding a note to the dating of an event with a calculation to the Julian calendar, I can add my own estimated B.C. or A.D. dating of the event according to Perkins. This gives me a point of comparison with date estimates that have come since Perkins’ time. While this timeline doesn’t serve as an outline of any book, particularly in subject or doctrinal matters, it helps to put any biblical event in perspective with other events.

The Combat between Christ and the Devil considers the battle waged in heaven and on earth through the end of Revelation. It is an extensive commentary on Matthew 4:1-11, with implications for individual believers and the church as they too are assaulted by the schemes of the Devil. In reading this section, modern believers will see that we experience similar temptations and assaults but also have a high priest who knows our troubles from his own experience.

A Godly and Learned Exposition of Christ’s Sermon on the Mount is crucial to Perkins’ understanding of the Gospel. He saw the Sermon on the Mount as the cornerstone to the Gospel because it is authored by Jesus himself after a whole night in prayer. He breaks the sermon into twelve branches. In this commentary, he has a style of making points, arguments, answering objections, and then expounding on ‘The Use’ (application) of the section covered. His style offers a model for preaching or teaching directly from Scripture. His commentary is lengthy in its analysis and explanations of points and objections but is very readable. Although Perkins taught at Cambridge, he doesn’t lose the reader in deep discussion of Greek or theological fine points. His intention is to instruct the pastor or devoted student of God’s Word thoroughly and practically, as he saw modeled by Jesus. In sermon preparation, you can find years of material in this single commentary on the Sermon on the Mount that will provide insights for returning to this most famous sermon many times.

Volume Two of Perkins’ works is a commentary on Galatians. It is the compilation of three years of sermons by Perkins on Galatians 1-5. After his death, Ralph Cudworth edited the sermon notes into this commentary and added his own commentary of chapter six to complete it. Much like Luther and Calvin, Perkins saw the importance of this letter as differentiating between the old Law of Moses and the new law of grace as given through the gospel of Jesus Christ. Writing at the early stages of Protestantism, he draws out the importance of a biblical view of law and grace and argues against traditions that may be as relevant today as they were in his time. He believed that as Christ taught in plain speech, his sermons should also be plain to understand.

You can now add this classic resource to your Olive Tree library!

Continue Reading

What’s the difference between a Concordance and a Cross Reference ?

Posted by on 07/18/2016 in: ,

Let’s be honest, sometimes it’s intimidating to ask what something is when it seems like we should already know. Maybe you’ve heard of the theological term or Bible study method before, but that doesn’t mean you know what it actually is and it can be embarrassing to ask.  Well, we’re here to help. In this blog we’ll talk about the difference between a Concordance and a Cross-Reference and how they can help you in your own Bible study.

FAQ sign. Question icon. Help symbol. on green background. illus

Cross References

A cross reference is a verse that has a similar theme or topic as the verse that you are reading. In the Olive Tree Bible App these are most easily found in the Resource Guide under Related Verses.

IMG_0846

In the above screenshot I’m reading Ephesians 4 in the NIV. Under related verses I see nine cross reference entries that are already a part of the NIV translation. I can tap the resource of my choice to bring up the specific cross references related to the text open in my main window.

IMG_0847

I chose the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge and now see a list of topics and words sorted by verse. The great thing about the Bible App is that I can tap any of these verses for a quick look without having to leave my primary reading.

IMG_0848

Cross references are a great tool when you are trying to study themes or topics found in all of scripture. But if you are wanting to do a specific word study then you’ll want to use a concordance.

Concordance

A concordance offers more precise lookups on specific words than a cross reference and shows you where those words appear throughout scripture. Like cross references, many Bible translations include a brief concordance section with the text but in order to do comprehensive word study a dedicated resource is the way to go. In the Bible App the easiest way to use a concordance is via the Lookup feature.

In this screenshot I’ve tapped on the word patience in Ephesians 4:2. I then tap on Lookup.

IMG_0842

Then I’ll select the Olive Tree NIV Concordance.

IMG_0843

Now I get a list of where the word patient appears throughout the Bible and I can easily access those verses in the popup window for easy reading.

You’ll notice that Olive Tree Concordance’s actually have three options.

  1. The verse references are a list of where the English word patient shows up throughout the Bible.
  2. The Strong’s numbers are where the Hebrew and Greek words that are translated as patient appear throughout the text.
  3. And the dictionary takes me to an explanation of the Hebrew or Greek word.

IMG_0844

Recap

As you can see there are differences between a Cross Reference resource and a Concordance.

If you are looking for related themes and topics to the scripture passage you are reading, a Cross Reference is a great tool.

If you want to do specific word study across Greek, Hebrew, and English then a Concordance will be a tremendous help.

Go here to see what Concordance and Cross Reference resources are available for the Olive Tree Bible App.

Continue Reading

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (TSK)

Posted by on 07/15/2016 in: ,

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 Olive Tree Bible App you’ll save tons of time and effort.  No longer do you have to leave your original text to search for a reference.

I’ll demonstrate how to use it with the Bible App running on an iPad.

First, select your preferred Bible translation in the main window. Then tap and drag the split window to access the Resource Guide in the App. The Resource Guide takes your downloaded material and connects it with the text you have open in the main window.

IMG_0838

Under the ‘Related Verses’ section you’ll see resources listed along with a number badge. The number indicates how many entries there are in that resource for the text that is open in the main window. Since I have the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (TSK) installed, the Bible App has found cross references relevant to the Titus passage I’m reading. I can then tap on the TSK to see all 19 entries that are indicated.

IMG_0839

The TSK organizes these cross references by topic and by verse making it easy to do further study on the particular themes found in Titus.

I can then tap the reference in the TSK and view it as a popup, or even split it out into a new window without leaving my original text.  This feature alone saves me valuable time that I’d otherwise spend flipping back and forth between references.

IMG_0840

As you can see, having the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (TSK) cross references in the Bible App will help you broaden your biblical understanding of specific themes and enable you to quickly study large portions of scripture.

What are some ways that you’ve utilized the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (TSK) to deepen your Bible Study?

Continue Reading

Share Some Encouragement

Posted by on 07/06/2016 in: ,

medicine, technology, nutritional supplements and people concept

If you’ve ever been through a tough season in your life than you know how important it is to get support and encouragement from those close to you. A kind word can be a much needed ray of hope and really give you the perspective you need.

From your smartphone you can easily text a quick word or prayer to a friend right when you’re thinking of them. With the Olive Tree Bible App you can actually share a scripture verse or even an entire devotional reading right from the app, via text, to your friend or loved one who needs to be encouraged. Here’s how to easily share right from the app!

For Android

  1. Tap and hold to select the text you want to share.
  2. Select ‘Share’ in the menu bar. For some phones you’ll need to scroll the menu bar to the side to see the share button.
  3. Select your messaging app and then enter the recipient just as you would for any text message.

android share

For iOS

  1. Tap and hold to select the text you want to share.
  2. Select ‘Share’ in the menu bar. For some phones you’ll need to scroll the menu bar to the side to see the share button.
  3. Select your messaging app and then enter the recipient just as you would for any text messaging.

iOS share

This sharing feature works with any type of word based resource like a Bible, Devotional, eBook and more. Try it out today and share some encouragement with someone you know!

Continue Reading