High Tech Meets Ancient Biblical Manuscripts
BibleWorks 9 Exegetical Software Offers Breakthrough Resources
NORFOLK,Va June 28 -- Bible students, teachers, pastors and scholars are in for a treat with the launch of BibleWorks 9. It introduced one of the most comprehensive resources for studying the original texts of the Greek New Testament -- the BibleWorks Manuscript Project.
The first installment of the BibleWorks Manuscript Project contains new e-transcriptions and complete image sets of seven of the most widely studied Greek New Testament manuscripts -- Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, Alexandrinus, Bezae, Washingtonianus, Boernerianus and GA1141. The images of these ancient copies of the New Testament are also hot-linked -- allowing users to quickly find specific verses -- giving unprecedented access to the early text. The morphological tagging of manuscripts is an ongoing project and updates will be provided to users as they become available.
BibleWorks 9 also includes several important Greek e-texts and revisions – all enhanced for computer analysis. They include the Robinson-Pierpont Byzantine text with Robinson 2010 morphology; Westcott-Hort with diacritics, variant readings and morphology; Scriveners with diacritics, variant readings and morphology, Trinitarian Bible Society Greek New Testament, and the Tregelles New Testament. With a click of the mouse button, BibleWorks users can quickly highlight differences between Greek texts in the main window.
“BibleWorks 9 takes a giant leap forward in terms of opening up the world of textual variants and text criticism,” said Dr. David deSilva, the Trustees' Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Greek at Ashland Theological Seminary. “Even more exciting, the transcribed texts of the major uncial witnesses can be selected as display versions. I can read the critical text, Sinaiticus, Alexandrinus, Vaticanus, and others side-by-side, such that the historic witnesses come alive as real texts, and not just as symbols at the bottom of the page of the print edition of the critical text.”
BibleWorks has also added the exhaustive New Testament Critical Apparatus from the Center for New TestamentTextual Studies (CNTTS). In BibleWorks, when studying any New Testament Greek text in the main window, the information from the Critical Apparatus updates allows users to see minor and major differences between hundreds of manuscripts dating from the 2nd through 15th centuries. Plus, in the BibleWorks version, every manuscript is categorized in easy-to-read matrixes by Aland categories and time periods.
Dr. Thomas Schreiner, professor of New Testament Interpretation at The Southern Baptist Seminary, noted that this will be a great help in academic settings. “One of the most notable improvements is in text criticism so that students are now able to weigh text critical options and examine some of the most important manuscripts for text critical work,” he said. “BibleWorks 9 isan invaluable tool for studying the scriptures.”
Author and scholar Moises Silva, who helped translate both the New American Standard Bible and English Standard Version Bible, is also impressed. “The addition of the textual apparatus from the Center for New Testament Textual Studies is alone worth the upgrade, not only because of the astonishingly detailed information it provides, but also becauseof the masterful way in which that information has been integrated into theprogram,” he said.
“Prepare to be impressed!” stated Dr. Joel Green, professor of New Testament Interpretation at Fuller Theological Seminary. “I noticed immediately that I had more choices atmy fingertips, so that options available in earlier releases were more accessible. The introduction of new text-critical resources means I won’t be moving back and forth between my computer screen and my hard copy of the Greek New Testament as before."
The addition of a fourth column on the main window is the first major improvement, allowing users to see two resources side by side. “I love this new feature where two analysis windows display at the same time. Now it is much easier to search on a word when in a particular book as well,” Schreiner stated. “I use BibleWorks everyday, and BibleWorks 9 makes a great product even better!”
Dr. deSilva added, “Now I can have the window displaying multiple versions, the analysis window displaying lexical resources, and a browse window showing the verse in its full literary context all displayed across the screen. A new "use" feature gives me an instant book- or canon-wide concordance of any word under the cursor. That feature is an amazing time-saver.”
“I opened the new, second analysis window and found I could work on issues of grammar and usage (or any mix of possibilities) at the same time,” said Dr. Green. “Now I can simultaneously search the lexicon, study usage, andview a text in context -- and that’s only one combination of options available to me in this new configuration. A great resource for serious biblical studies just got better.”
“It has something for everyone, from novice to advanced,” said BibleWorks owner and lead programmer Michael Bushell. “We’ve added some new resources that no other program has, giving our users capabilities that are unequaled in the area of Greek exegesis and textual analysis.”
Although all these new tools and enhancements may seem overwhelming, more than 120 tutorial videos (totaling six hours) are included, providing users with “how-to” examples of nearly every aspect of the program.
BibleWorks 9 is the premier original languages Bible software program for Biblical exegesis and research. It comes with Greek, Hebrew, and Septuagint Bibles for your computer, as well as translations in English, German, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, and dozens of other languages! The purpose of BibleWorks, LLC is to provide pastors, teachers, students, and missionaries with the tools they need to "rightly divide the word of truth" (2Timothy 2:15). BibleWorks began in 1992 and has its offices in Norfolk, Va.