Posts Tagged ‘Searching’

Two Ways a Topical Bible is Better than Searching

Posted on: April 7th, 2015 by Michelle Stramel 6 Comments

Topical Search

One of the main benefits of PocketBible is being able to locate things quickly in the Bible. The GoTo feature in PocketBible takes you directly to a specific book | chapter | verse in the Bible. For the times you don’t already know the location, you have the Search feature. Just put in a few words or a phrase and PocketBible will present a list of possible matches.

But what if the item you are looking for is not actually mentioned in the Bible (e.g., Trinity)? Or there are different ways to describe it (e.g., marriage and betrothal)? PocketBible can get you there!

Finding the Un-Mentioned

When you know something is mentioned in the Bible but you can’t find it with a PocketBible search for the exact word(s), consider using a topical Bible like Nave’s Topical Bible (a free resource). Nave’s leads you to the applicable Bible verses for over 20,000 topics. For example, a search for the word trinity will bring up zero hits in your PocketBible Bibles but exploring this topic in Nave’s will lead you to dozens of related Bible verses.

Finding the Indirectly Mentioned

Sometimes a search will bring up some of the verses you are looking for or it may bring up different verses in different Bible translations. An example would be if you were interested in finding all the verses about marriage. If you use the Find feature to locate the word “marriage” in the NIV, you would find 46 verses. Search for it in the KJV and you find 18 verses. In the NASB, it’s 32 verses. Why the difference? Each translation may use a different word or phrase to describe marriage for various verses. Instead of “give me the girl in marriage” it may say “give me the girl as my wife.” Thus, the results of a word search will vary depending on the translation.

With a topical Bible, you are reviewing the entire topic of marriage without respect to how the verse is phrased. The topic of a particular Bible verse is going to be exactly the same no matter which Bible translation you are using. Even though the descriptive words may be different, the topic stays the same.

A topical Bible like Nave’s presents topics along with all the related verses. The Nave’s topic for “marriage” is further divided into 26 subtopics. Each sub-topic includes links to verses. And related topics such as divorce, husband and wife are also referenced and linked.

In addition to Nave’s Topical Bible, the following topical Bibles and similar titles are available for use with PocketBible.

If you find Nave’s or the other topical Bibles helpful in your studies, we’d love to hear how! Please share in the comment section below.

Narrow Your PocketBible Searches With Strong’s Numbers

Posted on: March 11th, 2015 by Michelle Stramel 5 Comments

Two of the major features of Strong’s Concordance are that it provides an exhaustive list of the words used in the Bible and it links those words back (via the assigned number) to the original language root. If you add Strong’s Concordance to PocketBible, you can search for occurrences of the root word in the Bible using its Strong’s number. We offer three versions of Strong’s Concordance for use with PocketBible: KJVEC, NASEC and HCSBEC.

What is the benefit of using Strong’s Numbers in my searches?

Some things are not apparent in the English translation.

For example, in John 21, Jesus asks Peter three questions, “son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these?” (v15); “son of Jonas, lovest thou me?” (v16); “son of Jonas, lovest thou me?” (v17). While the KJV translates “lovest” the same each time, Strong’s assigns a different root word to Jesus’ first two uses of “lovest.” Strong’s indicates a root word of agapao (which is assigned the number 25) in the first two questions and then phileo ( which is assigned the number 5368) to that last use of “lovest.” When Peter responds to Jesus’ questions, each time he he uses the word phileo (G5368) to convey his feelings for Jesus.

You could look at the definitions for these Strong’s words and find out what others say about the meaning of these two words. But you could also explore these words in context for yourself with PocketBible. How are these two forms of love used elsewhere in the New Testament? How were they used by Jesus and Peter elsewhere? While your dictionaries may cite some verses where these words are used, the PocketBible search feature will provide you with an exhaustive list of usage.

How can I use Strong’s Numbers in my PocketBible searches?

Simply input the Strong’s number (i.e. G25 or H157) into the PocketBible search field to search for occurrences of that word in a Strong’s-numbered Bible.

To continue with our example, let’s use the PocketBible search feature to find out more about the word “lovest.” The search results presented below are from the KJV and the search is limited to the New Testament since we are talking about a Greek word. The bolded text is what is entered in the search field in PocketBible (or the syntax needed to get the results mentioned).

  • lovest – PocketBible reports this specific word form occurs 4 times in the KJV New Testament (KJVNT)
  • lov* – a second search (with a wild card) tell us that there are 202 variations of the word lov* that occur in KJVNT. The asterisk that follows the letters “lov” is a wildcard which tells PocketBible to search for all endings of the word (wildcards are not needed in the Android and Mac versions of PocketBible as they automatically report all word variations).
  • G25 – 109 verses in the KJVNT use this Greek word with the Strong’s number 25 (which we know from our dictionary means agapao).
  • G5368 – 21 verses in the KJVNT use this Greek word with the Strong’s number 5368 (which we know from our dictionary means phileo).

Thus we now know that while a form of the word “love” is used 202 times in the New Testament, only 109 of those times is the root word agapao and 21 times, phileo. That really doesn’t tell us much except to say that G25 is more commonly used in the New Testament. Given that we also want to know context for these words and how Jesus used them, we could re-run our searches and limit them to the Gospels. From there we could browse through the list to consider how these words were used in the reported verses.

For example, PocketBible reports that G5368 is assigned to the word “kiss” in Luke 22:47, referring to Judas kiss. In addition, G5368 is the root used for the word “loveth” in John 5:20 – “For the Father loveth (G5368) the Son…” So phileo is the root word used for Judas kiss and also to describe how the Father loves the Son. Hmm…this is the time I would be checking Vine’s or the Complete Word Study Dictionary to see what they have to say on this.

You can also use PocketBible to find a particular English word only when it’s translated from a specific Greek or Hebrew word. For example, love:G5368 will find all instances of the word “love” where it is translated from the Greek word 5368. To find a particular English word only when it’s not translated from a specific Greek or Hebrew word, using the format, love:-g5368, will find all instances of the word “love” where it is not translated from the Greek word 5368. To find a particular Greek or Hebrew word only when it’s not translated as a particular English word, using the format, -love:g5368, will find all instances of the Greek word number 5368 where it is not translated into English as “love.” This last search should give us Luke 22:47 where g5368 was used for the English word kiss (as we found above).

Related articles: Accomplishing Word Studies in PocketBible, How can I use Strong’s Concordance in PocketBible? and Shortcuts for turning on/off Strong’s Numbers in PocketBible Bibles.

Bible Searching Tips using PocketBible

Posted on: August 28th, 2012 by Michelle Stramel 6 Comments

A printed Bible limits you to the concordance in the back of the Bible (or your memory) for finding verses but PocketBible lets you search the Scriptures by any word, phrase or combination thereof. How does that work? – keep reading…

Let’s say you want to find every verse in the Bible where Jesus spoke. You could start your search with the phrase “Jesus said.” Depending on what platform you are using PocketBible on, tap or click on the Find icon in PocketBible (or choose Find from the menu) and type Jesus said in the search box. Hit the Search button. The results will list all verses containing the phrase “Jesus said” but only when the words appear in exactly that order. That means you won’t get every verse where Jesus said something. For example, you’d miss Matthew 12:48 where it says, “Jesus didn’t respond directly, but said…”, because the words Jesus and said are not together. To get this additional verse and others like it, modify your search to jesus AND said. AND is one of several Boolean operators you can use to enhance your searching in PocketBible. You can read about using Boolean operators for more effective searches in the program Help File (tap on the ? in any version of PocketBible). Below is a video that explains this concept as well:

If you are using PocketBible on an Android device or Mac, you don’t need Boolean operators. In addition to exact matches for “Jesus said,” your search results will include verses that contain all words in your search. You’ll automatically see verses where the words are there, even when not in the exact order.

Another way PocketBible can help is when you are trying to find a verse but can’t remember the reference (i.e. Book/Chapter/Verse) for it. For example, you want to find the verse where Jesus miraculously feeds the large crowds. PocketBible will let you narrow your search to just the Gospels (since you know the verse is somewhere in those books). Then search for loaves OR fish (or in the Android/Mac versions – loaves fish).

In addition to picking specific books or sections of the Bible, PocketBible will also let you narrow your search to look only in verses you’ve highlighted or bookmarked. Just be careful to clear these options out after you are done with your search or you may end up getting “No verse found” on your next search (when you know there is a verse that contains what you are looking for).

Do you have any questions or tips about searching in PocketBible? Please share them in the comments.

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