May 2011

Map-Maker, Map-Maker, Make Me a Map

May 31, 2011 - David Lang — For a writing project I'm working on, I need to explain why the city of Dan was located at the far northern end of Israel when their tribal allotment was 100 miles to the south, on the Mediterranean coast to the west of Jerusalem. The problem for the Danites was, of course, that their tribal allotment was occupied by the Philistines, a fiercely war-like people who enjoyed two technological advantages over the Israelites: chariots and iron weapons. Add to that the fact that most of their tribal allotment was along the coastal plain where ...

We've Got Your Back

May 27, 2011 - David Lang — This week we've been talking a lot about the needs of pastors and how Accordance helps meet those needs. Pastors of different traditions, temperaments, study habits, and preaching styles may have very different needs and so may rely on different features of the software. One pastor may depend heavily on Accordance's original language capabilities, while another may spend more time highlighting and taking notes, while still another may value the accessibility of commentaries and dictionaries. Whatever their particular needs, every pastor has ...

Taming the User Tool Edit window

May 26, 2011 - David Lang — Yesterday, pastor Wes Allen showed us how he records his observations and collects his thoughts using Accordance's User Tool feature. Wes explained that doing so enables him to stay focused on the text rather than constantly switching between Accordance and a word processor. In response to that post, another user pointed out the following problem: I follow roughly the same pattern, but I work on a monitor of limited size and therefore I end up having to keep switching to the User Tool edit window, which isn't much better than switching to a ...

The Pastor's Study: Gathering Thoughts in User Tools

May 25, 2011 - Accordance Bible Software — This week's installment of The Pastor's Study comes from Wes Allen, the pastor of Central Baptist Church of Riverton-Palmyra in New Jersey. Wes originally posted this to his own blog and gave us permission to repost it here. A couple of weeks ago I was approached by Darin at Accordance to write a blog post on how I use this wonderful tool for my sermons. To be honest, I was a bit hesitant to accept the invitation. I consider myself neither a scholar nor an Accordance power user—and I figured I’d just end up embarrassing myself. After ...

The Pastor's Study: New Series By Pastors For Pastors

May 24, 2011 - David Lang — Those of you who serve as pastors have a tough job. Every week, you're expected to deliver profound biblical insights in a way that is relevant, practical, engaging, and not-too-wordy. As if that isn't a big enough task, most pastors are also expected to be capable administrators, sensitive counselors, devoted to their families, up on current events and the latest theological controversies, as well as readily available to anyone who needs them. And while there's not much we can do to reduce the unrealistic expectations your congregations place ...

Perhaps I'm De-Ranged

May 23, 2011 - David Lang — In Friday's post, I showed how to search for all the words in a passage and then use the Analysis window to see which words are repeated most often. In the process, I made the following passing statement: Because of a difference in the way the RANGE command works, I can't use the RANGE command in this instance. I'll explain that in more detail in a future post. This morning, I dutifully began researching my promised dissertation on the differences between a permanent range and the RANGE command. Wouldn't you know it? I replicated Friday's ...

Finding Repeated Words in a Passage, Part 5

May 20, 2011 - David Lang — This week we've been discussing the interpretive value of looking for repeated words in a passage of Scripture, and I've been showing how to do this using Accordance's highlighting tools and other shortcuts. Going through a passage inductively and highlighting like that is a great way to discover key words in context, but it takes time. In the past couple of posts I've shown how you can speed up this process by doing individual searches and highlighting the hits, but you can save even more time by doing a search for all the words in a passage ...

Finding Repeated Words in a Passage, Part 4

May 19, 2011 - David Lang — This week we've been discussing the interpretive value of looking for repeated words in a passage of Scripture, and I've been showing how to do this using Accordance's highlighting tools and other shortcuts. Yesterday, I showed how, having noticed a repeated word, you can quickly search for other occurrences of that word and highlight the results with one click. But I ended that post by discussing the challenges of searching for repetition in a translation rather than in the original Greek or Hebrew: In most cases, the repetition of a word ...

Finding Repeated Words in a Passage, Part 3

May 18, 2011 - David Lang — This week we've been discussing how finding repeated words in a passage can make you aware of its major themes and motifs. On Monday, I showed how to use Accordance's highlighting tool to highlight key words so you can begin to notice patterns. Yesterday we applied this method to 2 Samuel 11, highlighting every mention of cleansing and then unpacking how those key words are used to develop a particular theme. Today I want to look at another oft-repeated word in 2 Samuel 11 and show you a few helpful shortcuts along the way. If you work your ...

Finding Repeated Words in a Passage, Part 2

May 17, 2011 - David Lang — Yesterday I described how you can use Accordance's highlighting feature to mark key words in a passage. Using different highlight colors for different key words enables you to see clearly which words and concepts are oft-repeated, which in turn can help you identify important themes or motifs. Today I want to show you how this works by looking at a specific example: the story of David and Bathsheba in 2 Samuel 11. Everyone knows this story begins with a bath, so let's start by going through this passage and highlighting every mention of ...

Finding Repeated Words in a Passage, Part 1

May 16, 2011 - David Lang — Whether you're a pastor, scholar, or inductive Bible study afficionado, one of the best ways to identify key ideas or themes in a passage is to look for repeated words and concepts. One way to do this is by going through the text and highlighting key words in various colors. Then you can easily see the words which get repeated most often. If you've never used Accordance's highlighting tools, you can open a palette showing all your highlight styles by checking Highlight Palette in the Window menu. By default, Accordance supplies one ...

Confessions of a Master Coveter

May 13, 2011 - Darin Allen — When I was around eight years old, I remember seeing another boy on TV who won a Toys "R" Us shopping spree. He was given a shopping cart and told that he had free run of the toy store for five whole minutes. He could toss anything he wanted into the cart, and at the end of five minutes he could keep whatever was in the cart. That was the day that I learned about covetousness. He didn’t deserve those toys, I did! Besides, he was doing it all wrong—filling up his cart with stuffed animals that simply take up precious cargo space when he ...

Seminars Near and Far

May 12, 2011 - David Lang — What do Sydney, Australia and Greenville, South Carolina have in common? Both cities are hosting free Accordance training seminars this weekend. If you're Down Under or near the Palmetto State, be sure to check our Seminars and Shows page for details of how to attend. Our team doing the Australia seminars has actually spent the last month doing seminars in South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore. You can read a detailed report of this whirlwind tour of the Far East here. Now they're teaching several seminars in Sydney over the next week ...

Word Lists and Tags

May 11, 2011 - David Lang — In yesterday's post and in another recent post, I talked about how you can use a list of words separated by commas and enclosed in parentheses to search for any of the words in that list. For example, entering (faith, hope, love) will find every occurrence of any of those words. The results are the same as you would get with an OR search such as faith hope love). Yet as I've explained in those other posts, a parenthesized word list has the advantage of acting as a single search term in a more complex search. Yesterday I showed how such a ...

Got Some 'Splainin' To Do

May 10, 2011 - David Lang — In yesterday's post, I showed how to do a search all for images with the caption "Table of nations" or "Family of nations." I constructed the search like this: (table, family) of nations. In response to that post, one user asked for an explanation of the list of words in parentheses. So it would seem I have some "'splainin' to do." I actually mentioned this search syntax in a recent post, explaining that a list of words separated by commas and enclosed in parentheses is equivalent to an OR search for each of those words. In other words, ...

Dining at the Table of Nations

May 09, 2011 - David Lang — The other day a user on our forums expressed a desire for a good map showing the distribution of nations described in Genesis 10. The Accordance Bible Atlas does not have a region layer showing what is commonly called the "Table of Nations" or "Family of Nations," so he had two options: (1) create a user layer of the Atlas showing that information, or (2) find an appropriate map image in one of his Accordance tools. Since creating a user layer can involve a fair amount of work, I suggested that he just use Accordance 9's new and improved ...

Jewish Tanakh with Strong's Completed

May 06, 2011 - David Lang — When we first released our Jewish Collection CD-ROM, we included Jewish translations of the Hebrew Bible such as the Jewish Publication Society's Tanakh (JPS) and Everett Fox's translation of the Torah (SB). We also included the Old Testament portion of the King James Bible tagged with Strong's numbers (KJVH). Although not an ideal solution, we included the KJVH so that our Jewish users could have the ability to connect an English translation with the original Hebrew. A year ago, we released an initial version of the JPS Tanakh with Strong's ...

Don't Be Blue if it Wasn't You

May 05, 2011 - David Lang — Monday it was something old (the 400th anniversary of the KJV), Tuesday it was something new (the release of the 2011 NIV), Wednesday it was something borrowed (the fact that the 1984 NIV and TNIV are living on borrowed time), so today we need to cover something blue. And now that the winners of last month's iPad2 Giveaway have been announced, what could be more blue than all of you who didn't win? The aim of this post is to encourage you not to be blue if it wasn't you. Our Grand Prize Winner was David Kennedy, a professor at Grand Rapids ...

Bibles on Borrowed Time

May 04, 2011 - David Lang — Monday it was something old (the 400th anniversary of the KJV), yesterday it was something new (the release of the 2011 NIV), so it stands to reason that today we should talk about something "borrowed." Yesterday I mentioned the fact that the publisher of the NIV wants to avoid selling competing revisions, so the 2011 edition is slated to be sold in place of both the 1984 NIV and the 2005 TNIV. Clearly, these two Bibles are living on "borrowed" time. We are only permitted to continue selling the original NIV or the TNIV for a few short ...

NIV11 Now Available

May 03, 2011 - David Lang — Yesterday, I mentioned something old by noting the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible. Today, I'm pleased to mention something new: namely, the release of the 2011 edition of the New International Version. Recognizing that the work of Bible translation is never done, the translators of the New International Version have been working to update the translation ever since its publication in 1978. The revision of 1984 became a best-seller, while the revision of 2005—published separately as the TNIV—never gained widespread acceptance....

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