Friday, February 26, 2010

A poll

Just for fun:

How many books do you own?

Updated reading list

If you look on the bottom right side of my blog, there's an carousel that had a bunch of books that I was either recommending or reading. However, that hasn't been updated in months, so I decided to change the list to "Currently reading" list. Some of the books are for school and some are for my own benefit, so if you have any other books you'd like to recommend or have any thoughts on the books listed, don't hesitate to let me know.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

BibleWorks 8, Part 2

I will continue with the review of the recently installed BibleWorks 8, and as I mentioned in my first review, this one will be on a couple new features that I think will be of great benefit for students of the texts. I happened to stumble on these features (I should really read those User's Guides, etc...) and they were pleasant additions to BW7.

This is a screenshot of the right side of the BibleWorks UI, and as you can see, there's many more tabs for you to enjoy. One in particular was this tab, "Context," that shows the number of particular words in the pericope in your viewing window (in this case, I was looking at 1 Corinthians generally and 4:14-21 specifically). The neat thing about this is, you can see quickly how many verses are in the book (437 in 1 Cor., BGT) and how many words (1937). Not only that, I can scroll down to see what words are being used throughout this letter, which I can then compare to another letter and so forth.

Let's say you wanted to see the development of Pauline vocabulary throughout his letters, this tab would be a great tool for such a research.

This is a screenshot of a separate window that you can access by going to "Tools --> Analyzing the text --> Phrase Matching Tool." In this case, I used John 3:16 as an example, and by searching for a phrase length of 4 words (with 1 word max gap), it gave me a total of 7 verses that it found (with varying degrees of phrase match).

If you are interested in intertextuality (as I am), having a tool like this is definitely a huge plus. In case you were wondering, you can search in exact word form (as in BGT, as shown in my screenshot) as well as morphologically which is just plain sweet.

I'm barely scratching the surface as far as how powerful this program is. I recently got an email for a BibleWorks workshop at Fuller, and if you are in the local area and have $30 to spare, I suggest you look into it to take full advantage of all that this program can offer. I will try to mess around some more with this program and post some thoughts in the near future. If you don't have BibleWorks and you are a student of the Bible, shame on you! :)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

BibleWorks 8, Part 1

This is so overdue and my sincere apologies to Jim Barr and the rest of the awesome folks at BibleWorks for this review copy of BibleWorks 8! I got engaged on New Year's Eve and been frantically applying to a bunch of schools the past few months (and not to mention the wedding planning), so that definitely ruined my plans to get these reviews out a long time ago.

Anyway, down to the nitty gritty: I just installed BibleWorks 8 and it is just plain awesome. I've been using BibleWorks 7 for a long time now, and just when I thought I've found the best software for biblical studies, they come out with BibleWorks 8. While the display will look pretty familiar to users of BibleWorks, I could tell right away that there has been some updates to stuff that are available with the click of a mouse:

  • Wallace's grammar is now included
  • Old Testament Pseudepigrapha (morphologically tagged! I have a lot of interest in doing research with Jewish apocalyptic literature, so this is sure to be a great tool in the future)
  • Ante-Nicene & Post-Nicene Fathers (I haven't checked if this is morphologically tagged yet but I'm pretty sure it is)

Granted that I own a PC and not Mac, but from what I could tell, BibleWorks 8 is far better than what you can get for the same price with Accordance! (Sorry Apple users.) Back to the topic of Pseudepigrapha, I just received today the two-volume paperback editions, and as I was flipping through the massive volumes, it was good to know that I could get on BibleWorks 8 and search almost all of it morphologically.

One thing that I appreciated about their interface is its consistency from one version to the next. I suppose I'm kind of old-fashioned, but new, hip, novel stuff doesn't flow very well with me, and I'm kind of the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" kind of guy, and well, I think the folks at BibleWorks did a great job not revamping completely what has been familiar to the users of previous versions. Ok, it is quite late, so that's it for now, but so far so good. Up next, some features that have changed that will make your studies as efficient and fruitful as possible!

For the entire review of BibleWorks 8 from my blog:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

1 for 1!

I just received notice that I've been accepted to Candler School of Theology for the Fall 2010! This is exciting because at least I know I'm in one school... I don't know what funding is like yet but hopefully they'll provide something! Very excited and thankful!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


I know publishers need to make money but...


Monday, February 1, 2010


I'm finally done submitting all of the applications! I guess it's in God's hands (and the admissions committees') now... I'm really hoping I get into a few schools with good financial packages. The above is basically what it seemed like in my head, although everything nowadays is all online... All these personal statements, writing samples, CVs, transcripts...

It's over! For now.