Digging into God’s Word
About the Guest
Meditating on the Word of God is vital for the Christian who wants to know and abide in Christ. Scott Lindsey shares some great tools that will give you an edge when studying the Scriptures.
Scott Lindsey shares some great tools that will give you an edge when studying the Scriptures.
Digging into God’s Word
Bob: You have probably had this happen in church—the pastor says, “Turn, in your Bible…” and people reach for their smart phones. Here is Scott Lindsey.
Scott: Teenagers, today—their whole life is digital.
Scott: I mean, you hand a paper resource to any teenager today and they’re going to look at you a little funny because that’s not what their world is. So, it just makes me smile when I show this to teenagers, anywhere, in any context. They get excited about the Bible because it’s the Bible on a computer.
Bob: This is FamilyLife Today for Monday, August 19th. Our host is the President of FamilyLife®, Dennis Rainey, and I'm Bob Lepine. Scott Lindsey from Logos Bible Software joins us today to talk about how, not just the Bible—but an entire theological reference library—is finding its way to smart phones and tablets all around the world. Stay tuned.
And welcome to FamilyLife Today. Thanks for joining us. Do you know why I’m looking forward to today’s program? We’re going to be talking about one of those things—this is one of those programs where you get to huddle up with all of your friends and you get to say, “Can I show you something really cool?” because I have been a user and a fan of Logos Bible Study Software for a long time. Anytime I’m with somebody who really likes to study the Bible, and we get to talking about Logos or I get to showing them Logos, they get really excited about it. Our listeners are just kind of that group of friends that we’re going to get huddled around us today and say, “This is really cool stuff!”
Dennis: You don’t have to be a preacher—you don’t even have to be a teacher. You have to be, I think, just someone who wants to get to know God and find out more about Him. This software is fantastic, in terms of equipping you to better know God and to do it in a really efficient way.
Dennis: Our buddy, Scott Lindsey, is back from Logos—all the way back from Seattle. He’s wearing a Seattle shirt; wouldn’t you say, Bob?
Bob: I’d say that kind of has that Washington State look.
Dennis: He came up to me, and I thought he looked like a rock star from Nashville. [Laughter] Scott, welcome back.
Scott: It’s good to be here! [Laughter]
Dennis: I’m sorry this is not TV—so our listeners can’t see what you’re wearing. You and your wife have been married for 21 years; you have five children. I’ve got to cut to the chase—away from your Bible software—and ask you about child number five. You adopted! Why?
Scott: Yes. Last time I was here, I think we announced we were in the process. We adopted from China—so, it’s a very lengthy process. It took us about five years, but it’s always been in my wife’s heart. It was kind of a requirement to get her to say, “I do.” [Laughter] I knew part of the package deal was—
Dennis: So she was the one who was the one who—
Scott: Oh, absolutely! But what a blessing! We got her about two years ago, now. She’s three. Her name is Haven Song. She’s just wonderful!
Dennis: Is that it for you?
Scott: No, we’re talking about adopting number six now.
Dennis: So you’re bullish on adoption?
Scott: I’m very bullish on adoption; yes.
Dennis: So are we!
Bob: There are challenges with adoption; aren’t there?
Scott: Absolutely. I mean—some developmental challenges—so, we have her in speech therapy. But it’s amazing! She keeps us young and on-the-go. My oldest is married. So, I tell people, “I’ve got a married daughter and one in diapers—and thinking about adding number six.” But, yes, what a gift!
Bob: I don’t know how many of our listeners have Logos Bible Software on their computer. You said you’ve got about a million-and-a-half people, worldwide, who are using Logos; right?
Scott: Yes, every day.
Bob: For those who don’t know—this is like a concordance with a theological library—with maps, with audio sermons. It’s amazing what all you put into the software.
Dennis: It’s on steroids, Bob.
Bob: Yes, it really is.
Dennis: I mean—it’s really amazing!
Scott: Yes, I tell people—the word, “software,” is intimidating to some—so, I try not to use that word a whole lot when I’m talking about Logos. It really is a library. It’s a library, though, that is accessible on your mobile device, on your tablet, on your computer. So, the beauty is—wherever you are, there is your Bible and your library—which is great for questions that are asked—you’re at Starbucks®, in a difficult situation with somebody, going through something. I mean, we get answers immediately. That is one of the greatest benefits of Logos. Don’t get intimidated by the word “software”. It’s all the trusted resources and authors, that we have come to love over the years—that are, literally, around your shoulder, helping you do Bible study.
Bob: I was in a meeting, last night at church, and we were having a discussion about First Corinthians, Chapter 11, where it talks about those who are taking the Lord’s Supper in an unworthy manner. We were talking about, “What did that mean?” Somebody said to me, “I wish I knew the Greek on that.” Well, I had my tablet. I hit Logos and said, “Oh, well, here’s what the Greek is.” I could just spill it out right there—instant access to that kind of thing, in the middle of a meeting. It was amazing!
Scott: That’s really the goal—is equipping people to give biblical answers. Not only personal Bible study—I think everyone should invest in their study of Scripture—but, again, we live in a world that has questions. I think the best place to get answers is the Bible.
Dennis: Well, one of the places where the questions come is at the family dinner table. One of the kids asks a question. I had this happen on numerous occasions: “Dad, what does that mean in the Bible? What’s the background on that?”
Bob: Yes, but you’re Dennis Rainey! So, you knew what it meant! [Laughter]
Dennis: I’d been to seminary, and I didn’t know many of the answers to the questions that they asked. If I’d had Logos Bible Software, at that point, you could easily click on it. Within a matter of seconds, you could have access to what numerous authors, throughout history, have taught on that passage, as well as just what the Bible says about it.
Bob: You guys have been doing some things, recently, that are connecting a whole new group of people to Logos. There are some free resources that you’ve started to make available.
Scott: Yes, we’re very passionate about the study of Scripture. So, we decided to create a new study Bible that’s kind of built for the digital age. With digital, you’re not limited. We hired the best people—like Randy Alcorn, Tim Keller, McDowell, and Giessler—literally, from the ground zero up, built what I feel is one of the most amazing study Bibles out there. We sent a film crew to Turkey, Israel, and Greece. We got stock video and photography of archaeological places and cities. It’s this unbelievable, multimedia-rich experience in the Bible.
It’s an app—so, you download it to an Android® device or an iPhone® or iPad®. The response we’re seeing—especially, from teenagers! They say, “Wow! I would study the Bible all day long!”
Bob: What version is it in?
Scott: It can be any translation you want—that’s the other nice thing. If you’re a King James—it can be a King James Study Bible. If you’re—
Scott: ESV, NASB, and so on.
Bob: And the study notes for each verse have the opportunity to kind of expand out. If you want to go deeper, the study notes will take you deeper.
Scott: Right. It’s the limitation of paper—is that simple little paragraph. With our study Bible, you’ll see a little plus sign at the end of the paragraph. If you push it, more notes. The notes will change, depending on what translation you anchor the study notes to.
Bob: If folks are interested in finding out more about the Faith Life Study Bible, they can go to FamilyLifeToday.com and click on a link there. It will take you right to a page where you can find out how you can have this on your phone or on your tablet. Is it something you can do online, as well?
Scott: Yes, you can access the notes. Let’s say you drop your phone or you’re out of range. You can get right on an internet website, log-in, and there you go!
Bob: Again, go to FamilyLifeToday.com. We’ve got a link there that will take you to where you can find out how you can access the Faith Life Study Bible.
What else? In addition to the Faith Life Study Bible, what other things are you doing for folks to get them engaged in the Bible?
Scott: Well, we’re very passionate about two primary things. One is Scripture—getting people into Bible study. The other thing is—it’s very important that believers are in community—around believers that believe in Scripture. We’ve created a new social side to Logos called Faith Life. It’s kind of, if you will, Facebook® for the church. You can share prayer requests—you can do Bible study together—but, again, creating a sense of community around the Bible.
Dennis: And this is important, I think, as couples start out their marriage—to be surrounded by other people, who will encourage them to go the distance. Then, when they have children, they’re going to need that same community to coach them and encourage them about how they raise the next generation; right?
Scott: Yes. As a matter of fact, I created our own family group in Faith Life—actually, started a reading plan, at the beginning of the year—that we’re all participating in. I get to see who’s slacking a little bit on their reading plan. We’re able to share prayer requests.
You can create a group that’s open to anybody. You can create a group that is invite only. You can create a group like, “My Family”—that’s just for us.
Dennis: It makes it easier for a father and a mother to truly lead their family, spiritually. I’m thinking about our family. Our children are grown—they’re out of the house. They’re scattered from, almost, one end of America to the other. This would be a great way for families to connect, and to stay connected around Bible study, regardless of where they live.
Scott, you’re actually producing a magazine that is kind of the old-fashioned way? It’s made out of paper?
Bob: Do you even read it because it’s on paper— you, yourself, I mean?
Dennis: I heard you speak kind of disparagingly of paper, Scott.
Scott: It’s the only paper-thing I read. That’s it. [Laughter]
Bob: He’s a company man, ladies and gentlemen.
Dennis: The newspaper in Seattle?
Scott: Nope! It’s only on my iPad. [Laughter]
Dennis: Share with our listeners about this. This is a bi-monthly periodical. Earlier in the year, you had one that was on a friend of ours, Joni Eareckson Tada. She was on the cover—it talks about how she studies the Bible and encouraging people to do that.
Explain the purpose of this magazine, though.
Scott: About three years ago, our CEO called us into a meeting and said, “I want to create a magazine.” We were looking at him like, “We’re a digital company.” But, again, our goal is better Bible study. We understand there are people who will never boot a computer to dive into God’s Word. How do we serve them? So, we created Bible Study Magazine.
Interestingly, we scanned everything out there. There was not a single publication, solely-focused on Bible study. So, we created Bible Study Magazine. We’ve had Nancy Leigh DeMoss on the cover—we’ve had Randy Alcorn—Josh McDowell. The entire magazine is about Bible study, word studies. We always feature a prominent ministry leader: “How does Bible study affect them in their daily lives?” “What are their methods of Bible study?”
We get testimonials from families who kind of fight over the mailbox when Bible Study Magazine shows up because teens love it—moms, dads. I just think it’s an amazing resource.
Dennis: Well, this is what FamilyLife Today is all about. We try to bring people back to what the Scriptures say about our relationship with God, our relationship with our spouse, and, ultimately, if God blesses, our children. If you want to be successful in life’s most important relationships, you’ve got to get in the Book.
Dennis: That’s why we’re passionate about what you’re doing.
Bob: I’m really interested. You’ve seen these statistics, too, that, among evangelicals, in America—where we have more access to Bibles and to Bible study materials than we’ve ever had—it’s pretty thin—pretty shallow—how many folks are spending any time in the Scriptures.
Scott: I’ve been with Logos, now, going on 16 years. I work with most of the major denominations and ministries. The saddest statistic, in my opinion, today, is where Bible study is in our country. Ask anybody, and it’s on the decline. When we ask people, “Why aren’t you studying the Bible?”—the way we know we should be—the number one excuse that we all give, at one time or another—is time. It’s a time-management problem. That’s the beauty of Logos.
Dennis: That was where I wanted to take you. I heard you say, earlier, in a conversation, that up to 90 percent of all Bible study is spent trying to fish around and find the resources to look into to ultimately study what the Scriptures are saying. You say that Logos Bible Software helps the Bible student get to the truth quicker than ever before.
Scott: Yes. Literally, all you need to do to use Logos is type in a topic: “marriage”, “tabernacle”, “baptism”, or the verse: “Romans 8”, “Psalm 23”. You type topic or verse, and click one button—the “Go” button.
Dennis: My computer’s on, here. I’m just going to do that. Give me something, Bob, to look up.
Bob: Why don’t you look up—let’s see, we’ll do something on marriage and family. Why don’t you look up Matthew 19; okay? Because Jesus was talking about marriage in Matthew 19; okay? I’m going to type it into mine, too: “Matthew 19”
Dennis: You’re kind of slow; I’ve already got it. [Laughter]
Bob: I’ve got it! Matthew 19. Now, what do we do after we type that into the search window here—Scott.
Scott: I did it, as well: Matthew 19. Click “Go”. Within seconds, Logos is—right now—doing about 50 to 60 hours’ worth of Bible study in a matter of seconds. I’m, now, looking at the screen. I’ve got my commentaries, cross-references, parallel passages, “Does this story show up in Mark and Luke?” and so on. I’ve got maps, genealogies, and info graphics.
Dennis: You can find out at what point in Jesus’ ministry this occurred—kind of the context of what He was teaching here.
Scott: Right. And word studies—we’re very passionate about helping the Church study Greek and Hebrew. Some of you, listening, might be going: “Oh, I could never do that. I didn’t go to seminary.” But, literally, the ability to simply float on a word, in your English Bible, and Logos does all of the word studies in a matter of seconds. It defines the word, shows you how to pronounce the word, “What does the word mean in the Greek?” and so on—again, by simply floating on the word in an English Bible.
Here’s another thing. Teenagers today—their whole life is digital. It just makes me smile when I show this to teenagers, anywhere, in any context. They get excited about the Bible because it’s the Bible on a computer. I mean, you hand a paper resource to any teenager today, and they’re going to look at you a little funny because that’s not what their world is. So, introducing them to Bible study in Logos excites them.
Bob: I know what you’re talking about because, in our garage, I have a stack of World Book Encyclopedias. I spent a bunch of money, years ago, so I would have the World Book—the authority on whatever I would need. It’s in the garage. Nobody’s looked at them in 15 years. I hate to get rid of them, but nobody’s looking at them! If you want to know something about anything, you go to your computer—you go online.
Dennis: You want the latest.
Bob: As you just said—to have a library of selected books that you’re looking at—that’s huge!
Dennis: Scott, you train people from all walks of life in how to study the Bible, using this software. Undoubtedly, you’ve got a favorite story of a person who really wasn’t a student of the Bible. There are probably a lot of people—listening to this broadcast—who are going, “Why are you guys talking about this?” Is there a favorite story that you recall of someone who grabbed hold of this and they went: “Wow! All the books of the Bible are in harmony with one another. This whole thing does fit together!”?
Scott: I have numerous stories. One of my favorites: A few years back, a mom called me—who had attended an event that I was speaking at—purchased Logos for the family and called me a couple of weeks later to “complain”. She said she called up for dinner, to the teenage boys, up in a bedroom. She called the first time with no response. She called the second time; no response. By the third time, she was marching up the stairs—probably, some steam coming out of the ears—bursts into the room. They’re doing Bible study in Logos. That’s why they didn’t want to come to dinner. She called to thank me that for the first time ever she had to kick her boys off the computer because they were doing—God forbid—Bible study.
Dennis: And she wanted to complain about that!
Scott: She, then, wanted to hug me through the phone. [Laughter]
Dennis: With a grin!
Scott: She said, “Scott, this is the problem every parent in America would love to have!”
Bob: Yes, right.
Dennis: Yes. Undoubtedly, there are a number of parents who need to have this “problem” in their own lives. They need to get in the Book and the Book needs to be in them so they can pass it on to their kids. That’s why we’re really pounding the table about this today because illiteracy in the Bible, I believe, has led to the breakdown of marriage and family, among Christians.
Bob: Yes. And I think a lot of people are put-off or intimidated. They read the Bible and think: “That’s confusing. I’m not exactly sure how to understand it. I need some help. I need some guidance.” Well, when you have what amounts to a theological library and a research assistant doing the research for you, all of a sudden, what was intimidating is no longer intimidating.
Scott: Not only that—the way that we visualize what you’re learning. I made the point this morning—in working with some of your staff—that we live in a 3-D culture. The way that we are used to receiving information today is through video, and graphics, and charts, and things. That’s what we’re doing for the Bible. If you’re studying Noah and the Ark, we’re going to show you how big that was—we are going to compare it to the Titanic. I mean, we’re really going to visualize the Bible and bring you back to the time of the Bible—walk you through the streets of Philippi—show you pictures. We kind of dare people: “Bible study is not boring! Bible study is awesome!”
Dennis: Yes. You actually showed us a picture of the Ark. How many sheep-sized animals did you say the Ark would house?
Scott: Yes, one of the info graphics actually states that 125,000 sheep-sized animals would fit on this boat called the Ark.
Bob: Yes; I wouldn’t want to have to do the clean-up duty on it; you know? [Laughter] Forty days! Whew!
Dennis: No doubt.
I go all the way back to, I guess, the first person who really interested me in Bible study—Dr. Howard Hendricks. Of course, he got his graduation papers, earlier this year, to get to heaven. Yet, he taught me to have a hunger and a thirst for the Scriptures—not to just casually get into them and nibble at the edges—but to take a dive and get into it! Let the Bible come alive!
Frankly, I think if anything, you’ve really helped to take some of the boredom—the tough stuff of Bible study—some of the hard work—you’ve taken some of that away so that it is really easier to be able to glean what it’s teaching.
Scott: And not just Bible study per se. One of the great tools in Logos is also to search on topics. So, for example, I just went in here and typed the word, “anxiety”. I’m getting Bible dictionary articles on anxiety; verses, like Matthew 6:25: “Do not be anxious about your life….” and Philippians 4:6: “Don’t be anxious about anything.” But then, Logos also relates anxiety to insecurity, pressure, and worry. It really thinks through the theological issues here. Again, I don’t know what I would find if I typed that in Google®.
Scott: I need the Bible. I need biblical answers. It’s interesting you mentioned Dr. Hendricks. When I present, at a conference, I always close with Dr. Hendricks’ quote: “We know enough to own the Bible, but not enough for the Bible to own us.” That’s really our passion at Logos—we want you so on-fire excited about Scripture that it starts changing you, your marriage, and your kids—everything!
Dennis: Yes. Who was it that said, “God didn’t give us the Bible to make us intelligent sinners, but to transform our lives and make us saints”?
Bob: And I’m thinking about the families who are about to send a student back to college, or off to college for the first time, or those families who have Bible as a part of their homeschool curriculum. A tool like Logos Bible Study Software on your home computer—on your laptop, on your smart phone, on your tablet—this is an invaluable resource. It’s something that is open, on my computer, all the time.
Right now, our friends at Logos Bibles Study Software have put together an offer for FamilyLife Today listeners. If you go to FamilyLifeToday.com and click on the link for Logos Bible Study Software, you can browse through the different libraries that are available and find the one that’s right for you. Because you are a FamilyLife Today listener, if you order this week, you will save 20 percent off the regular price of the software.
It’s a special offer—good this week only. You’ve got to go to: FamilyLifeToday.com and click the link you find there to take advantage of this special offer for FamilyLife Today listeners. Again, the website is FamilyLifeToday.com. It’s a 20 percent savings, but you’ve got to place your order by Saturday. Go to: FamilyLifeToday.com and click on the link you find available there.
There’s also a free download available of the Faith Life Study Bible that the folks at Logos have put together. You can have that on your smart phone, on your tablet, or on your computer. Again, all of the details are available at FamilyLifeToday.com.
By the way, we want to make sure we say a big, “Thank you,” to those of you, who are regular listeners to FamilyLife Today and who, from time to time, will get in touch with us to help support this ministry. During the summer, as you may be aware, ministries, like ours, often see a decline in donations—in financial support. That has been the case for us this summer. Things are a little slower than they are during the rest of the year.
So, if it’s possible for you, today, to go to FamilyLifeToday.com and help us with a donation, it would be greatly appreciated. Our website, again, is FamilyLifeToday.com. All you have to do is click on the link that says, “I CARE”, to make an online donation. If you do that, we’re going to send you a two-CD set that features a conversation we had with Dr. Steve Farrar about what a dad can do to anchor his family in Christ—not just in this generation—but in the generations to come. That’s our thank-you gift, this month, when you support the ministry of FamilyLife Today.
You can also make a donation by calling 1-800-FL-TODAY. If you do that, just ask for the CDs with Steve Farrar when you make a donation over the phone. And if you’d prefer to mail your donation, our address is: FamilyLife Today, P.O. Box 7111, Little Rock, Arkansas. Our zip code is 72223. Again, it’s P.O. Box 7111, Little Rock, Arkansas—Arkansas is “A-R”. The zip is 72223. Be sure to ask for the CDs, with Steve Farrar, when you mail in a donation. Thanks for your support of the ministry. We really do appreciate you!
We hope you can join us back tomorrow. We’re going to introduce you to a mom who raised five kids. Along the way, she and her husband took in more than 20 foster care kids and had an impact in their lives. You may have heard of her. She is a Congresswoman from Minnesota, who ran for President a couple of years ago. Her name is Michele Bachmann. She joins us tomorrow. I hope you can join us back for that.
I want to thank our engineer today, Keith Lynch, and our entire broadcast production team. On behalf of our host, Dennis Rainey, I'm Bob Lepine. We will see you back tomorrow for another edition of FamilyLife Today.
FamilyLife Today is a production of FamilyLife of Little Rock, Arkansas.
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