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New Module - Pearse, Additional Early Church Fathers

Monday, June 27th, 2011

For those who own BibleWorks 8, you may have noticed that it includes the massive Ante-Nicene and Nicene and Post-Nicene Church Fathers set edited by Schaff. This set includes a huge number of writings in English by many of the early Church Fathers going back as far as the Apostolic Fathers 1st and 2nd centuries AD) to Gregory the Great (6th century AD).

What you may not have known was that as large as that series of writings is, it is is only a small part of what was written by the Church Fathers and during others who lived within that time period. Thanks to the phenomenal labor set forth by Roger Pearse (blog), a large number of these “other” writings has been published online. Roger has a passion for making old texts available that have long since been in the public domain. Much through his own expense he has not only typed in texts, but has also commissioned translations of foreign language texts into English all so that more people would have free access to these ancient riches. As part of this passion, he encourages others to freely use the fruit of his labor and redistribute it in other places. Therefore when I asked him if I could put it in a module for BibleWorks users he was delighted.

When you’ve installed the Additional Early Church Fathers, you will be able to access them via the menu system under Resources | Backgrounds | Pearse, Additional Early Church Fathers

So without further ado, I present:

the Additional Early Church Fathers texts as compiled by Roger Pearse (DOWNLOAD — 28 MB)

In order to get modules to work, be sure to do the following:
Step 1. Download the file as found on this page.
Step 2. Unzip the file into your “databases” subfolder of BibleWorks
Step 3. Right click on the CHM file (it’ll look like all other HTML help icons), go to Properties and make sure the box for Block is unchecked.
Step 4. Start up BibleWorks and the module is available either through the Menu system (under Resources) or in the Analysis tabs.
Font Help:
Because some of the files included here are older, Roger did not necessarily use Unicode rendering in all places. Therefore, you may find it helpful to download some of the extra fonts that he used in order to read these writings properly. The link to download the fonts is here. You can see this website for help on how to install fonts.

WORDsearch and BibleWorks Q&A

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

If you were like me you probably had some questions about the new WORDsearch modules for BibleWorks. Hopefully I answered a few of your questions in the basic review of the products, but I wanted to also open up the floor to more general questions. I have started a list of questions I came up with on my own, but if you have questions of your own, you can pose them here. I will either attempt to answer them myself or try to get answers from either BibleWorks or WORDsearch (depending on what the question asked is). Questions 1-3 are presented with answers officially vetted by WORDsearch.

Question #1. How will I upgrade these texts if there are ever any upgrades to them?

Answer #1. Since these files are produced by WORDsearch, you won’t be able to upgrade them via the BibleWorks updater.  You can find out if there are upgrades available for your books by going to:

If you see that an upgrade is available, you can re-download the updated books by logging in to and choosing “Unlock and Download eBooks” to get an unlock code.  Then run the WORDsearch Book Unlocker for BibleWorks, enter the unlock code, and check off the books you want to re-download.

Also, WORDsearch will maintain an opt-in email list to which they will send news about BibleWorks books that are newly available or have been updated.

Q2a. If I buy a product on the WORDsearch for BibleWorks page, can I use that product in BibleWorks as well as WORDsearch?

A2a. Yes.  You only need to purchase the books once to use them in both programs.  Since the underlying formats for BibleWorks and WORDsearch are different, a separate installation process is needed for each, however.

Q2b. If I’ve already purchased one of these shared products for WORDsearch, can I use it in BibleWorks or do I have to re-purchase it?

A2b. You can use it in BibleWorks at no additional charge.  Not all the books in the WORDsearch library will be available, although they will be adding them as quickly as possible, especially if they are requested by customers (by emailing  Instructions for unlocking your books in BibleWorks can be found here:

Q3. What if I find errors in the WORDsearch texts or have problems using these, whom should I contact?

A3. Any errors found in the WORDsearch texts should be reported to WORDsearch, since they are the creators and editors of those files.  You can email WORDsearch’s eBook Development Manager, LaRosa Johnson, directly.  If you have problems downloading the files or getting the files to work, you should still be contacting WORDsearch.  If, however, your problems are more related to the BibleWorks program itself, contact BibleWorks technical support.

Q4. Does this new project mean that either WORDsearch or BibleWorks is going to go away?

A4. No. Both companies are independently owned and operated. This is not a merger. It is, however, a point of cooperation. WORDsearch had already created these e-texts and secured licenses with the respective publishing companies for their program and they were able to change the formatting of these e-texts into a form that worked in BibleWorks.  This means that BibleWorks now will be able to use many more resources, but they didn’t have to devote extra time to re-inventing the wheel (i.e. re-digitizing these e-texts, securing new licenses, etc.). On the plus side for WORDsearch, they get access to new BibleWorks users who are purchasing products from them even if they’re not using the WORDsearch engine. It’s a type of cooperation that is very commendable and win-win for both companies and consumers (in the view of this reviewer).

New WORDsearch modules for BibleWorks

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

As promised, here is your first glimpse of the WORDsearch modules for BibleWorks which are officially being released today. Thanks to Derek Kurth at WORDsearch I was provided gratis copies of the Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels and the New Bible Dictionary for the purpose of this review.

The following modules are immediately available and can be purchased via WORDsearch’s website:

  • Dictionary of Biblical Imagery (Leland Ryken, James C. Wilhoit and Tremper Longman III), InterVarsity Press
  • Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels (Joel B. Green, Scot McKnight, I. Howard Marshall), InterVarsity Press
  • Dictionary of New Testament Background (Craig A. Evans and Stanley E. Porter), InterVarsity Press
  • Dictionary of Paul and His Letters (Gerald F. Hawthorne, Ralph P. Martin and Daniel G. Reid), InterVarsity Press
  • Dictionary of the Later New Testament & Its Developments (Ralph P. Martin and Peter H. Davids), InterVarsity Press
  • New Bible Commentary (Gordon J. Wenham, J. A. Motyer, D. A. Carson and R. T. France), InterVarsity Press

The focus of this review will be on the process of buying and using these modules in BibleWorks. I will not be commenting on the product itself (if you want to know whether you would like any of the books themselves, you can easily do searches for book reviews online. Needless to say all of these books are generally well-received among evangelicals.). Further questions and answers about the products can be given on this post.

I. On Purchasing WORDsearch modules for BibleWorks

Overall, the process for purchasing these new modules for BibleWorks is very straightforward. The one trick is that you will be buying them from WORDsearch’s website, not BibleWorks’ because they are WORDsearch’s product. The main link for the BibleWorks-ready resources is here. Once there, you simply add the resource to your shopping cart and check out. If you are new to WORDsearch you may have to create an online account, but if you’ve done shopping online before, that’s not a problem.

When you have paid for your product you will be sent to a receipt page (the receipt is also emailed to your registered email address). The receipt should look something like the following:

As you can see, you will be provided a link to the WORDsearch book installer for BibleWorks. You will also be given codes that you will need to use in order to download your books. Once the WORDsearch book installer loads, you will open that program and insert the codes. If for some reason your codes do not work (or you forget them), you can log into your WORDsearch account via this link and select the option “Unlock and Download eBooks”

Downloading the WORDsearch book installer is a simple process. You save the .exe file and when it has finished downloading, you run the program. The installer itself is only 1.7 MB, so it should not take long to download it even if you do not have an ultra-fast connection. If you have successfully downloaded and opened the book installer, you should see the following pop-up:

In the Customer ID, type in the first ID that you were given on your receipt, and in the password blank, write the password you were given on your receipt. Upon successfully validating your ID and password, the book installer will begin downloading your books and adding them to BibleWorks. [In my testing process, there were 2 or 3 times when the book installer seemed to "stall" and not work. I reported this to WORDsearch but since these stalls didn't happen every time, there wasn't a fix made that I know of. So if you experience a stall in your download, my recommendation is to just keep waiting (up to a minute) and it should resolve itself, at least it did for me. If you seem unable to download the books, your first resort is to email WORDsearch tech support (not BibleWorks).] This is what you want to see happening:

Shortly to be followed by:

And when that is done, all of the installing has been done for you. There is nothing else you need to do other than start BibleWorks! No unzipping or relocating files. It was incredibly smooth and WORDsearch did a great job in making this so easy.

How will you know the files installed correctly? Open up BibleWorks and pull down the Resources menu. If you purchased one of the dictionaries, it should show up under a new menu item called “Dictionaries” (*not* under “Bible Dictionaries” - which refers to BibleWorks’ default dictionaries) or “Commentaries” if you purchased the New Bible Commentary.

If you have made it this far and your new resources show up you know you have installed them correctly. Congratulations!

II. Using the WORDsearch modules in BibleWorks

**Before using your WORDsearch modules, I would also recommend downloading the WORDsearch font installer. I found a few places in the Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels where characters were not being printed because I did not have the proper fonts (for a check, see the Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels under “Abbreviations” and then pick “Dead Sea Scrolls and Related Texts.” If you haven’t downloaded the WORDsearch fonts, the “Q” for Qumran will not show up.).

There are a few different ways you can use these new resources in BibleWorks, but you will find that they are basically used just like any other module in BibleWorks. If you simply want to open one of these modules to read an article or look something up, you can open it up under the Resources menu (shown above). The WORDsearch module will then pop up. The format is identical to other BibleWorks modules, based on the HTML Help format. You can resize the window if you want to, navigate by a contents pane, search with a search tab or bookmark favorite articles with the favorites tab.

All of those options should be readily apparent above. In the contents pane, all of the articles are listed alphabetically as you would expect. Within articles cross-references are linked, so anytime the article says “(see X Article)” you can click on it and it will immediately open to that article, no extra navigation or clicking required. Within the articles, major subheadings are also linked at the beginning of the article, so in the picture above, the article has 9 sub-headings listed and you can either navigate to them by scrolling down in the window or clicking any one of the headings on that page. Another standard feature that you’ve come to expect in BibleWorks modules is that Scripture references are tagged so that hovering over them will bring up the text within the module, and these new modules do not disappoint in this realm.

As always, if you find a verse that you want to do more work on, you can also click on it and it will be loaded into the Browse Window in BibleWorks.

The modules themselves do not have any special automatic bibliographic features. On the one hand it is very easy to copy and paste text from these modules into any text editor of your choice, but it will not instantly create a citation for you. However, it does retain page numbers within the module, which can be helpful if you want to either look it up in the real book version or cite according to page number.

One final feature that deserves mention is how you can use these new modules within the Resource Summary window in BibleWorks. This is one of the greatest strengths of the verse tagging that has been done on these modules. If you are examining a verse of the Bible in the Browse Window and then look at your Resource Summary window you can see whether any of your current resources mention that verse. These new resources will show up in your Resource Summary window any time they contain a verse that is mentioned and clicking on that link will automatically open up the module to the very spot where the verse is mentioned.

This should immediately make the value of these resources evident in BibleWorks. You can instantly see whether this dictionary cites Matthew 5:4. You don’t have to do any searching or flipping through the whole thing. It’s instantly available for you through the Resource Summary window. If the verse isn’t mentioned, it will not show up here. This process is immensely helpful in making quick work of one stage of your research.

III. Overall Impressions

Overall I was pretty impressed with the easy process of buying and installing the WORDsearch modules. The only part that I found somewhat troublesome were the stalls I experienced in downloading the books. Everything else was flawless and incredibly simple. It would have been convenient if the book installer would have also installed the fonts needed, rather than having a separate download, but that’s certainly not a painful flaw.

I thought the overall quality of the module was up to BibleWorks standards. The verse tagging was aggressively done and I found very few errors even in places where I was sure the tagging would be thrown off by other book names. Although some may not like the HTML Help format of these modules, this is similar to other BibleWorks modules and so it is what you would expect there. Some people have complained that the prices of these modules look a little bit too expensive, but we probably should keep in mind that prices are not simply decided by the company (in this case WORDsearch), but also have to do with agreements made with the publishers. In any event, if the price is a problem, the market may correct itself, through the use of sales or bundling of multiple resources. Only time will tell. [note: Since initially posting this review, I've noticed that all of WORDsearch's modules for BibleWorks are now on sale! I still haven't seen any options for bundling, but this is a good sign!]

If these new resources interest you at all, I would not hesitate to recommend them for BibleWorks. These resources are available in other Bible programs as well, but if you like having your resources under one umbrella and use BibleWorks more than those other programs, then this would seem like a no-brainer to me.

There are two main reasons why I like this latest venture. The first is that I think this is awesome that it opens up new products to BibleWorks users. Previously some users have complained specifically that the dictionaries provided in BibleWorks were out of date and considered it a flaw of the program that no newer resources were available. While these are special add-on modules and not part of the main package, this should help pave the way for even more resources to come into BibleWorks via WORDsearch. The second thing I like about this is that it shows a cooperation by two separate Bible software companies that should be encouraged and supported. I think too often Biblical software companies have operated in the capitalistic sphere of the world in order to be efficient companies that make money by providing services for their consumers. However just like I believe churches shouldn’t operate like businesses, I’m even more impressed when Bible software companies reject the same old business models and do things that show that the goal of helping people get into and understand God’s Word is more important than being the biggest and most profitable company out there. I suppose one could argue that financially this is win-win for both companies, but instead I’m focusing on the fact that neither company has tried to take the other out of the marketplace, but have opened themselves up to the other’s user-base.

If users have any other specific questions or you would like to see descriptions or pictures of any other things, please leave a comment and let me know. In the above I focused on the Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels. The features and quality of the New Bible Commentary are the same, but I simply did not post pictures of both resources. However, here is a picture of the basic format of the New Bible Commentary:

Updated: Vaticanus and Sinaiticus modules

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Many of you, I’m sure, are aware of the textual criticism modules that have been produced by Pasquale (Vaticanus, Sinaiticus, Bezae (2nd Edition recommended), AlexandrinusWashingtonensis (Gospel of Mark only - by Ewan MacLeod)).  Some of these have been available for well over four years! In addition to having access to the images (facsimiles and/or pseudo-facsimiles) of some of the famous manuscripts of the New Testament such as Sinaiticus and Vaticanus, these modules also included links to even higher resolution images hosted by the Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts (CSNTM).  Recently we became aware that the URLs for those manuscript images have changed and so it became necessary to update the user modules so the links would still work. So these updates fix those link issues.

Sinaiticus - (DOWNLOAD — 110 MB) This update fixes link issues.

Vaticanus - (DOWNLOAD - 165 MB) This module has been updated to use the better quality images as found on the CSNTM site, namely, it is the 1868 pseudo-facsimile edition: Carlo Vercellone and J. Cozza, Bibliorum Sacrorum Graecus Codex Vaticanus. Rome: S. Congregationis de Propaganda Fide, 1868-81. 6 volumes. New Testament (volume 5). It still also includes Tischendorf’s transcription. Neither is as good as seeing the real manuscript, but both can be helpful.

**If the files don’t immediately work, make sure you have followed these instructions:

In order to get modules to work, be sure to do the following:
Step 1. Download the file as found on this page.
Step 2. Unzip the file into your “databases” subfolder of BibleWorks
Step 3. Right click on the CHM file (it’ll look like all other HTML help icons), go to Properties and make sure the box for Block is unchecked.
Step 4. Start up BibleWorks and the module is available either through the Menu system (under Resources) or in the Analysis tabs.

SBLGNT Apparatus Module Update

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

I’ve posted a new version of the SBLGNT Apparatus Module.

This update fixes a problem in Matthew 16, where headings were incorrectly labeled and indexed.

DOWNLOAD! To install, unzip and copy to your \databases\ folder (overwrite all old files).

SBL GNT Apparatus Module

Saturday, October 30th, 2010

Michael Hanel was quick to get the new SBL Greek New Testament (SBLGNT) compiled into a new BibleWorks version that can display in the Browse Window along with any other version. This new version shows the diacritical marks used by Michael Holmes to indicate the presence of variants.

Now, in addition to the base text, the critical apparatus is available as a BibleWorks CHM module!

This module works best if you have also installed the SBL Greek font.

DOWNLOAD! — CHM module of the SBLGNT critical apparatus. To install: unzip the files and copy to your \databases\ folder and restart BibleWorks. The SBLGNT Apparatus will be linked in the Resources|Text Criticism menu, and it will also show up in your Analysis Window under the Resources Summary Tab (if there is an entry for the particular verse you are browsing). REMINDER: When you unzip the .CHM file you may have to unblock it for it to work properly. Right click on the CHM file (it’ll look like all other HTML help icons), go to Properties and make sure the box for Block is unchecked.

See also Michael’s previous post for information about the SBLGNT text available as a BibleWorks version (with/without diacritics).

The main SBLGNT version (with diacritical marks) and the critical apparatus are available in a single ZIP file (unzip all to your /databases/ folder and restart BibleWorks to install).

Note: If you happen to share links with friends to these BibleWorks files, please use either a direct link to the BibleWorks blog (here or here), or to the BW forum thread. Do not link directly to the files (unless you use the links provided above).

Brief Updates

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

You don’t see a lot of posts here because neither Jim nor I is paid enough to be constantly at work on this material, but lucky for you Jim still continues to pay for the web hosting. Lucky for you that also means even if we’re not always adding new material, the old stuff is still here and quite functional. But that brings me to two questions that are constantly being asked.

1. People have said when they try to open zip files they are corrupted. I have no logical explanation for why this is. The files are not corrupted, they are quite functional. There are only two solutions I have to this problem. Either try re-downloading the files or else use a different program to unzip them. Windows has a built in zipping function now, but sometimes that doesn’t work. You can try downloading 7-zip or Winzip and see if you can work it out that way. Beyond that there’s not much I can do to help. The files work fine for us, so we can’t troubleshoot a problem we don’t have.

2. People have problems using the modules because when they open they appear as though they do not work. These files need to be unblocked usually in order to use them. Instructions for doing this are clearly stated at the top of the modules page.

I’ve added links to two New Testament textual criticism modules that have previously been available on LaParola’s website. They are entitled New Testament Manuscript Variant Readings and an alt. version with variants sorted by text type and they are both compiled by  Pasquale Amicarelli.

Finally, I also added a link to a timeline of the publication of English Bibles made by Mark Hoffman. This file can be saved in the BibleWorks 8\timeline\ folder and must be opened in BibleWorks Timeline. You can read more about it here.

New Module - Luther’s Church Postil

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

Spawned by the quarter-break at classes, I decided to busy myself by putting together a module that I thought would be appreciated by a lot of people out there at this time of year, a compendium of Martin Luther’s Church Postil. This particular set is quite old and is found on numerous sites online, but the site from which I drew upon is here.

As is written there, “The following sermons of Martin Luther are taken from The Sermons of Martin Luther, published by Baker Book House (Grand Rapids, MI), 1983. This 8 volume set was itself a reprint of John Nicholas Lenker translation of Luther’s Church Postil. Lenker’s edition originally appeared in 1905 - as “The Precious and Sacred Writings of Martin Luther,” volumes 1-14, published by Lutherans in all Lands. These sermons were scanned and edited by The Dr. Richard Bucher and are in the public domain.”

This collection includes 117 of Luther’s Sermons from the Church Year. It is a great treasure of Luther’s thought and may be especially helpful to pastors as they work through the lectionary.

This is a quick release. I’m looking into tagging the text so that Bible verses show pop ups but that will be the task for many other days.

DOWNLOAD! - unzip to \databases\ subdirectory of BibleWorks and will show up upon re-start of BibleWorks under menu item “Resources: Lutheran Resources: Luther, Martin - Church Postil”

BibleWorks Modules in Mac

Wednesday, December 9th, 2009

A call for help to other BibleWorks users:

On our modules page, Mark Hoffman asks,

I’m using a Win machine, but I have students with Macs running BW8 under emulation. When they can’t get the modules to work, I’m clueless.
Can someone please give some Mac-specific step-by-step directions for adding modules? Thanks.

I also run BibleWorks on a Windows machine, so I can’t provide much guidance, but does anyone else who runs BibleWorks via Mac emulators have any experience with this issue?

Questions of clarification to Mark: (A) Do any modules work (including the base ones in BibleWorks) or is this just the ones students download here that don’t work? (B) What combination of Windows version and emulator are the students using?


1. Ben is using Windows XP in Parallels (and has used versions 3-5). He says he does nothing different than one would normally do on a Windows computer and everything works fine.

Calvin’s Big Day

Friday, July 10th, 2009

As a Lutheran, I’m not personally a big adherent to John Calvin or his theology, but that doesn’t mean I don’t find some value in his works. More importantly, I realize that a much larger portion of the blogging community and BibleWorks users is strongly influenced by John Calvin’s work. In the midst of numerous blog posts about his works, I just wanted to remind people that there are currently two free BibleWorks user modules which contain the text of John Calvin’s works, namely the Institutes and his Commentaries on the Bible. Celebrate John Calvin’s birthday the right way by enjoying the free gift of his works! With special thanks to Willem Swanepoel for making this resource available. Note, this isn’t a new resource, it’s been available here for quite a while, but I thought this day would be an appropriate one to remind users.

DOWNLOAD! Commentaries on the Bible

DOWNLOAD! Institutes