Any one who has ever dropped in on me when I've been preparing a Bible study has been appalled by the pile of books, small gospels, versions, art works, commentaries, concordances, dictionaries, little pieces of paper, folders of lecture notes and general mayhem in the study. Research is a space consuming, as well as a time consuming endeavor, and often enough a vague memory will lead us to hours and hours of hunting, before one proves oneself to be wrong. The computer is supposed to save us all that, For the most part, however, especially for those who have little enough money, the computer cannot save us 'all that'. Heather Belle, whose work appears on these pages, gave me, of the goodness of her heart, a computer program of the King James Version, and mightily useful I found it for preparing the Quiet Time e-mails. But what of more modern versions?
Let's face it, the Bible is the most important of tools for any Christian. The great gift of the Protestant tradition was to open those riches of mind, knowledge and understanding so that every one of us could drink directly from the testimony of the first witnesses. Along with the living tradition shared with and from fellow christians and the living testimony of the spirit in our personal relationship with Christ the need to learn more about Him who first loves us is a basic foundation of all growth.
I continued the hunt, finding many wonderful works out there, and
all, unfortunately, either limited in scope, or fearfully beyond my pocket.
Until the day when a typing error proved to be the greatest of blessings.
I found myself at e-Sword. The bible is free. e-Sword is given freely to
all, and it is illegal to sell copies.
The initial download includes the programme,the King James Version of the bible with Strong's numbers and Strong's dictionary. You will want to download additional resources for maximum potential and enjoyment. Then you can download other versions, Hebrew, Greek, the Vulgate, Modern Languages and so on - Matthew Henry is available and a Bible Atlas. I was delighted to find my beloved Douay-Rheims available, but there are also analytical and modern language versions in Chinese, Dutch, German, Indonesian, Norwegian.. and so many others! Suddenly it is all there on one screen. I have John Wesley's notes, and the Imitation of Christ, all within reach of a button. There's a copy and paste feature and even somewhere to keep your own on going thoughts and reasoning . The initial program is not only improved and updated, but if there are install problems, solutions are readily available. A question or feedback is replied to within hours.
I truly recommend this program to every one. This collection of basics, of intriguing information and even, should one wish, information about life and times of the people and events described in the Bible is essential. And much easier to access, and therefore more often accessed.
I love my e-sword Bible, and I pray every blessing on the dear soul who so freely received and so freely gives. Rick Meyers is careful to acknowlege the wonders of those who did the original commentaries, translations and dictionaries, but someone who shares these treasures so generously must be a very special person, not to mention talented to provide us with such a smooth interactive tool, efficient enough that it disappears leaving the central gift, the Word of Life, at centre stage.