March 11, 2013
URL: http://www.shepherdproject.com/harvesting-the-fruit-of-gods-word-part-iii-tools-for-the-harvest/ [Retrieved on 2013-03-12]
When I began to study the Bible, there really were no great Bible programs in existence. Now, we have a number of great options. My own personal favorite is Bibleworks, which I have been using for over ten years and have found it indispensable to serious study. Here are my favorite things to do with Bibleworks:
- Word searches– Bibleworks functions as a concordance making searching for terms in scripture a breeze. You can search the entire Bible or limit your search to a book or to just the old or new testament. You can search in any version you prefer and you can also search in Hebrew or Greek (and other languages like Spanish and French). You can even search for whole phrases, such as “in Christ.” This alone makes this a better choice than a hardback concordance.
- Cross referencing – It is really easy to find other bible passages that relate to the one you are studying with Biblework’s cross-referencing feature. It lists verse that are commonly seen to relate to the specific verse you are studying, allowing you to make scriptural comparisons to help with interpretation.
- Word studies in dictionaries and lexicons– Bibleworks comes loaded with several word study tools, including expository dictionaries and lexicons. You can also buy extra modules to load onto it as well (including the five volume dictionary sets I mentioned above). Not only does this save you valuable shelf space, but time as well as searching is much quicker. You can see the range of meaning for Greek and Hebrew words and more extensive discussions on those words.
- Vocabulary study – Bibleworks has a great feature in which you can learn and review Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic words. If you have studied biblical languages, you know how easy it is for vocabulary to slip. This feature keeps Hebrew and Greek sharp and allows you to acquire a broader range of vocabulary in the languages.
- Speaking and teaching notes - You can easily cut and paste the Hebrew and Greek text into Word documents to have a nice clean copy for translation or taking notes on. This allows you to keep the Greek text and notes in the same document which is so helpful for teaching or preaching preparation. You are also able to easily transfer other things to Word documents, including lexical entries and lists of occurrences of words which is great for preparing handouts for teaching Sunday school or Bible classes.
These things are only the tip of the iceberg for all Bibleworks can do. If you have an older version of Bibleworks, consider upgrading to the new version, which has even more tricks and gadgets for bible study including the ability to have several tabs open for studying multiple passages, the full Moody atlas of the Bible, new statistics features, and many more perks. One of my favorite things about the new version is the fact that it consistently checks for updates and you can apply them immediately so you never have to wonder if your program is up to date...
Susan Rieske is a Ph.D. student at Wheaton Graduate School and is on staff at Shepherd Project Ministries.