It’s the 21st century, and anyone studying the Bible should be aware of a few technological advances that can really help them. So, here are my “Top 5 Bible Study Technologies.” If you’ve got some others, feel free to post ’em in the comments!
- Accordance — I’m a Mac guy, so Accordance is my Bible software of choice. Accordance is a full-featured Bible software package that allows you to compare texts, look up Greek and Hebrew words, write your own notes, draw maps, look at commentaries and lexica, etc. You can do it all, if you’re willing to spend the money. Everyday at my fingertips I’ve got a fountain of information, right here on my little iBook—no need to lug around a million different books. If you’re not hip to the Mac, if you’re stuck with Windows, check out Logos (which is also now available for Mac).
- Zhubert.com — Sometimes you just aren’t near your own computer, and you’re just dying to know exactly what Greek word Paul is using here, or how to parse this verb in Luke…Zhubert.com to the rescue. As long as you’ve got someone’s computer with internet connectivity, you can satisfy your Greek dorkiness. There’s also online flashcards, vocab lists, and a bunch of other features that you can personalize and customize. It’s the closest thing to Web 2.0 that Greek Geeks have got!
- Biblioblogs (see a list of Biblioblogs on Unspun) — Monographs are annual. Peer-reviewed journal articles are quarterly. Blogs are instantaneous. Over the last few years, biblical scholars have flooded the blogosphere with “biblioblogs”—blogs devoted to biblical study. Whether you are just a casual browser, or you really are interested in finding out more about Prof. April DeConick’s thoughts on “The Fourth Quest”, there is a ridiculous amount of information to be gleaned from biblioblogs. However, don’t forget this important rule of thumb: check everything out, trust no one. Just as the web can be a fantastic source of information, it is also full of misinformation.
- Google Scholar — Google Scholar is one of those things that isn’t great yet. But, one day, it will be. Coupled with Google Book (which I believe used to be known as “Google Print”) Google Scholar can help you separate the wheat from the chaff and work on the fly, miles from a library, miles from a book. While I was in grad school, there were so many times that these two services as well as JSTOR and other online repositories of information bailed me out. The wonderful thing about Google services is that they are totally free. God bless ’em!
- Reading Glasses — An oldie but a goodie. First crafted by some cool Italians (check it out) in the 13th century, reading glasses have been indispensible to scholars and lay folks alike for centuries. As the years go by, our eyes start to go a little wacky. At the same time, the print in Bibles is forever diminishing…my wife’s Bible has a 7.5 point font. Cramp! More on glasses…
What are your favorite Bible Study Technologies?
- Daniel Foster informed me that Logos for Mac is not currently shipping. I’ve left it in the text the way it is, however, because someday it will be shipping…hopefully! [05/10/2007]