Seeing as you’re probably using the same technology right now, I can understand if you’re not impressed. But can you imagine how unbelievable that would sound to someone living in the 1800s?
They would think we must all be doctors, lawyers, philosophers and theologians with that much information readily available at our fingertips. Imagine breaking the news to them that we primarily use such powerful technology as the internet to share funny pictures of our pets, tell others what we are currently doing and get in arguments with strangers.
I want to help you redeem some of your time spent on the internet by pointing you to some of the best resources the web has to offer Christians in this series of blog posts titled “Getting Resourced.”
For the first entry is this series I would like to help you get more out of a website I find myself at nearly every day: BibleGateway.com.
The bread and butter of the site is its superior Bible search tool that allows you to look for any verse, keyword or topic in a variety of translations. You can also search for multiple verses at the same time by separating each query with a semicolon.
But wait! There’s more!
- Have you ever read a verse of the Bible and wondered, “What in the world was that all about?” You can satisfy your theological conundrum by turning to a reliable commentary. BibleGateway allows you to access several different commentaries on Scripture for free. Just go here and dive in: http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/commentaries/
- Ever wonder how pastors know how long a cubit is and how much a shekel weighs? How do they know the weather patterns of Syria and the job description of a tax collector? It’s likely they used a Bible Dictionary to gain that kind of information invaluable to rightly interpreting Scripture. BibleGateway has got you covered with a few Bible dictionaries right here for free: http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/dictionaries/
- Do you have a hard time pronouncing Old Testament names? Do you get tired of reading? Do you wish that someone would just read the Bible to you while you relax, do a chore or drive? BibleGateway has you covered with multiple audio Bibles to listen to for free. You can listen to dramatized versions as well as regular versions here: http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/audio/
- Have you been thinking that you’d like to step up your devotional life? Perhaps you’d like to have family devotions after dinner but don’t know where to begin. If you need a place to start then check out the free devotionals available at BibleGateway: http://www.biblegateway.com/devotionals/
- Do you desire to grow in your knowledge of the Word? Many people own a Bible. Few have read all of it and even fewer have studied it thoroughly. A good reading plan and a personal goal is a great way to provide the accountability you need to regularly read through Scripture. BibleGateway has reading plans for you. I strongly recommend the Chronological Bible as it helps you see where the writings of the prophets (e.g., Isaiah; Daniel) fit into the history books (e.g., 1,2 Samuel; 1,2 Kings). You can even set up a daily reading to be sent to your email. Browse the plans available here: http://www.biblegateway.com/reading-plans/
- Do you need some help knowing how to study the Bible? Check out this great video series by R.C. Sproul to learn how to get more out of your study: http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/knowing-scripture/
- Is the font size on BibleGateway too small for you to read comfortably? You can change the font size displayed as well as other settings by going here: http://www.biblegateway.com/preferences/
- Do you like to compare translations to one another? That can be an excellent way to get a better sense for what the verse says in its original language. BibleGateway has a feature that allows you to look at five different translations at once. Whenever you are looking at a verse, click on the yellow button that says “Add Parallel” and it will bring up the verse in a different translation for you to compare.