Monday, March 14, 2016

LEADERSHIP: Bible Study Tools

I recently heard of a few Bible study tools that some of my pastor friends are using. Here's the deal though. They are resources, but they don't put your Bible study together. The provide information, but don't show you how to organize a study logically, ask significant questions to challenge students or pull it all together in a meaningful way to change lives. Information doesn't always impact lives, in fact, it rarely does.

Glo Bible
I've used the GLO Bible for a few years now and it's a great tool. I put it up on the screen and students can read along, I can use the images, maps, videos, virtual tours, the timeline, etc.  I've enjoyed it as a resource and it's very affordable.  It appears they're in the middle of an upgrade for mobile use which will be released Easter 2016.

Another one that will help with Bible study preparation (Bible history, culture, translation, etc.) called Logos. They have different products for different denominations. The Lutheran starter is $265.46 and it has any number of helpful sources including a library of 200 book resources specifically chosen for Lutherans. The program can be upgraded to the platinum level for $1934.96. It's got a lot of great resources, but you need to use it a lot for that price!

The other one I've seen mentioned is Accordance. It is also a massive collection of interactive resources. The starter program costs $59.90 but comes with very limited resources. The Bible Study version costs $199.00 and for many more resources, the Ultimate version tops out at a cost of $1999.00. Try a free Accordance demo.

Sword Searcher
Sword Searcher is a downloadable application that costs $59.95.  It seems to be a nice tool, though, while it is a reasonable price, I'm not sure if it's the one I would choose because it doesn't have the resource books I prefer. Check out the features and screenshots.

Of course, you can use those or the one that's extremely reasonable in cost, TheWord. The basic version is FREE!! It doesn't have everything the other programs have, but it has the basics. Check the library for books that can be added on at a reasonable price, of course, if you add on too many you may be paying the price of one of the other programs.

Another free Bible study resources is e-Sword. This application also has a parallel Bible, an integrated editor, graphics, powerful searches, etc. It all depends on what you need and the level of your study.

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