Monthly Archives: August 2016

Bible Computer Programs

We are commanded in scripture to study to show ourselves approved unto God (II Tim. 2:15). Since we will stand in judgement before God based on our understanding of and obedience to His word (Rev. 20:11-15), it is imperative that we give serious attention to the study of God’s word. The following is a list of computer Bible programs I use in my Bible study which you might find helpful.

But before addressing these digital resources, I would suggest reading the Bible as often as possible and memorizing as much of it as is within your power. All serious Bible students will tell you that setting aside regular times for Bible study is indispensable to “mastering” God’s word. It takes time and effort to learn anything well. Learning God’s word is no different in that respect.

But beyond this regular study, take a pocket New Testament with you where ever you go and when you have free time, take it out and read. Or, if you have an electronic Bible, take it with you. Not only will this provide an opportunity for study, but it may also provide an opportunity to talk with someone else about the gospel, whose interest is piqued by your reading the Bible in public. Unfortunately, those with Bibles on their phones will not find as many opportunities as those who possess an actual book in their hands.

Also, having your New Testament with you will allow you to memorize God’s word. It only takes just a moment to begin the process to memorize God’s word. I say a process because you may not fully commit a passage to memory at one sitting, but once you lay down a foundation, it will become much easier later to recall it. The reason memorization is important is because once you have this passage embedded in your mind and hopefully in your heart, when a subject comes up, your mind will very naturally bring forth the passages that address it. If you cannot memorize a passage, at least remember what the passage teaches and where to find it.

Now, regarding resources used in regular, personal Bible study, I most often use e-Sword. s-Sword is described as “a feature rich and user friendly free Bible study app with everything needed to study the Bible in an enjoyable and enriching manner!” I must concur with this assessment.

What is especially grand about e-Sword is not just that it is free, but it will also allow you to add modules of some of the best known and time tested works the world has known. Barnes, Clarke, the Pulpit Commentary, Jamieson-Fausset-Brown, McClaren, Gill, The Biblical Illustrator, Poole, Henry, Alford and many others. To be sure, most of these works are by denominational authors, but they provide great insights into the word of God when used judiciously. Lesser known works are available, as well. In fact, works from our own brethren can be found on various sights that offer modules for e-Sword.

The best site I have found that offers add-ons for e-Sword is called There are many other sites, however. There are literally thousands of volumes available on that site. To buy all of these works in hard copy would be unthinkable for someone like me, but with e-Sword I have them at my fingertips…free! There are many different Bible versions available, many different commentaries, reference works, devotionals, maps and graphics. There are other sights which offer copyrighted works for which you must pay, but most of these are free. You can even add modules to be downloaded or add your own books to e-Sword.

Another resource I use is WORDsearch. I own a copy of WORDsearch 11, the latest version. It is inexpensive at $39.95. There is also a free version called WORDsearch Basic. Wordsearch is a little more intuitive to use than E-sword and it also provides over 200 free books. WORDsearch is also expandable, but beyond these two-hundred free books, you must pay for each book. It allows you to search for words or sentences and you can search for words in the original languages. It provides Strong’s definitions to words and you can even hear the word spoken in the original tongue. What is nice about WORDsearch is that you can open up several tabs and read and compare several passages at a time.

Another Bible software package that I occasionally use is Olive Tree Bible Software. They have a free version and a paid version, like most software packages. I use the free version mainly because it offers the NIV and NKJV free, which I don’t find in other software packages. I use these versions merely to see how these translations read and to have a digital copy at my fingertips. You can add other books to your collection, but most of them cost.

I also use Logos Bible Software which is a very expensive software package. The version I use is one of the less expensive language base packages, which is still very expensive compared to other Bible software. It cost in the neighborhood of three hundred dollars. To purchase the most expensive you would have to pay over $12,000 dollars. This is way out of my range, so I am content with what I have. I am far from mastering all that my limited version will do, but for really serious Bible students, it is extremely helpful.

I would also mention two other free programs. One is called called theWord. It is similar to other Bible programs that allow you to add books, but it seems a little more cluttered to me. That may be just because I am unfamiliar with the it. The other is Quickverse starter, which is a free, base version of Quickverse. It is my understanding that Quickverse is no longer published.  I must confess that I do not own Quickverse. But many use it and I am sure that it will be helpful.

Another Bible program that is very useful is BibleWorks.  I do not own it and cannot say much about it.  But it is described as “the premier original languages Bible software program for Biblical exegesis and research.”

There are other software packages that I use, but these are the ones that I find most helpful in my studies. Perhaps this list will help you, too. Next week I would like to look at internet sites that are helpful in studying the Bible.

Eric L. Padgett

Why Don’t People Believe?

The question often arises in business meetings and in general discussions among concerned brethren why more people don’t manifest an interest in the gospel of Christ. Why don’t more people believe? The question is often asked as if there is one, single, simple answer. But the truth is more complex. While unbelief may well be the thread of thought that underlies all rejection of God, the reasons for unbelief are varied and numerous.

Some do not believe simply because they are fools. “The fool hath said in his heart there is no God” (Psalm 19:1). The evidence is there, readily available to them, if they would be honest with the truth and themselves. “Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard” (Psalm 19:2-3). Thus, all are without excuse (Rom. 1:20). Some people, however, simply do not believe because they are fools.

Some do not believe because they are blinded. Paul wrote, “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (II Corinthians 4:3-4). Unlike the atheist who sees the evidence but denies it, these are blinded and cannot see the evidence (Eph. 4:17-19). Naturally, satan is behind all unbelief, whatever the cause (John 8:44).

Some people do not believe because they hold the praise of men to be more valuable than the praise of God (John 12:42,43). Some of the Pharisees believed in Jesus but were afraid to confess Him because they did not want to be put out of the synagogue (John 12:42). Jesus said: “How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?” (John 5:44). The Bible teaches we cannot serve two masters (Matt. 6:24). If we love the praise of men more than the acceptance of God, then we will not believe or our belief will be vain.

Some people will not believe because their hearts are hardened. Israel’s heart was hardened to the point that they could not enter the promised land (Psalm 95:8-11). There are many causes of hardening of the heart but the end result is that the gospel cannot penetrate enough to bring about repentance. On the day of Pentecost, the Gospel was able to penetrate and prick the heart and three thousand souls were saved (Acts 2:36). Unless the heart can be pricked, there will be no faith (Luke 24:25).

Some people will not believe because they do not love the truth. Jesus said, “And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe Me?” (John 8:46). Jesus here implies that we ought to love the truth enough to accept it, whatever it is. Some people, however, receive not the love of the truth (II Thess. 2:10). Because some people do not love the truth, they will change the truth of God into a lie (Rom. 1:25). We have to buy the truth and sell it not (Prov. 23:23).

Some people will not believe because they know that God requires them to change their life and they do not want to give up their sins. In Romans one, Paul described those that reject God and it was for this cause God gave them up unto vile affections (Rom. 1:26). How many people have embarked on a life of unbelief simply because they did not want to give up their sinful life (cf. Matt. 19:16-22)?

Still others do not believe because they do not seriously and purposefully study God’s word. Paul wrote, “So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17). Saving faith is a product of evidence. God’s word was written so that we might believe (John 20:30,31; I John 5:13). Want deeper faith? Immerse yourself in the word of God.

Thus, we see that there are several reasons given in the Bible that people do not believe. There are also many others reasons people might not believe. Some people might not believe because they have had a bad experience with religion or with the Lord’s people. Some people might have experienced tragedy and they blame God for it. Some people may not believe because their parents did not believe. Some people may not believe just because they have never given any thought about it. Other may not believe because they are rebellious. Still others may not believe and may not even know why they do not believe.

One thing is certain: “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned (Mark 16:16 ).

Eric L. Padgett

On Belief, Worldviews and Life

Have you ever come to the unnerving realization that something you once sincerely believed very strongly, now clearly contradicts another sincere belief you now know to be true? When that happens, what do you do? You could dismiss the new information and continue to hold to beliefs now proven to be false (Matt. 12:22-24; Acts 4:16,17). You could just put it out of your mind or lie to yourself and continue as if you had not learned better (cf. Acts 24:25; 26:28). Or, you could give up those old, sincere but erroneous beliefs and embrace the new information and new knowledge (cf. Acts 22:7-10).

Whether we recognize it or not, we face this situation quite often in life as new information challenges our old, perhaps long-held, beliefs. Sincere and honest individuals yield to the new information and boldly accept the truth (Luke 8:15). They embrace it and rejoice in it because they have found something very precious–the truth (Matt. 13:44-46). Serious individuals assimilate the new information into their own body of knowledge, adjusting all previous beliefs to harmonize with the new facts. This is part of what it means to be rational.

Dishonest individuals, however, cringe in fear of any new information that might shatter their own manufactured worldview (John 3:19-21). They do not want to change any beliefs they already hold unless it gives them aid and comfort. Very often they will twist what information they have to fit their worldview at the very expense of truth (cf. II Pet. 3:16). Furthermore, they do not care about unity of knowledge. It makes no difference to them whether or not their beliefs contradict one another, as long as what they believe is what they want to believe.

But the truth is, truth does not contradict itself. If I hold two beliefs that contradict one another, then either one or both are false. I could not both believe “it is raining” and “it is not raining” at the same time and in the same place and way. This is not merely a philosophical exercise, either, but it has practical implications (cf. Gal. 2:14). For example, if I believed that lying and cheating were sinful acts that should be avoided, but then I condoned and excused them in either myself or someone else for whatever reason, I am implicitly contradicting my own beliefs by my actions! At the very least I am being inconsistent.

Truth is also interdisciplinary–that is, for example, a truth of history will not contradict a truth in science. What is true in science and/or history, will not contradict what is true in religion. Unfortunately, too many people disregard this fact and hold to contradictory beliefs depending upon what role they find themselves playing in society. For example, a person may say they believe the Bible as a matter of religion but then hold to a naturalistic view of origins. Logically, however, they could not believe both because the Bible affirms a supernatural origin for the universe.

All of a person’s beliefs together compose that person’s worldview. Most people probably do not give much consideration, if any at all, as to how all their beliefs harmonize with each other or how they harmonize with reality, but simply choose their beliefs as if they were choosing food from a buffet…I like this, I don’t like that, I like this, etc. But sober individuals will always evaluate their beliefs to see if they are correct and if they are consistent (II Cor. 13:5). Sincere, sober and sound thinkers will buy the truth and sell it not (Prov. 23:23).

Perhaps not since the first century has our worldview mattered as much as it does today. Today, the cultural power-brokers are pressing on the people of God situations and circumstances that would involve them in sin. We are being told we cannot criticize homosexuality or same-sex marriage or transgenderism or Islam. We are being told that we cannot preach everything the Bible says to preach because it is not politically correct and would offend certain groups. We are told that we must not talk about sin. We are told we must not speak out too loudly or too passionately. We are told we have to violate Christian moral principles to make America great again because other options are much worse. So we are told. We are told a lot of things that aren’t true.

As Christians, we must make certain that what we believe is scriptural, true, consistent and coherent. All of our beliefs must either be rooted in book, chapter and verse or must not contradict the plain teaching of scripture and all of our actions must be authorized by the word of God. If we disconnect our personal actions from our personal beliefs, then do we really believe? Show me your faith without your works and I will show you my faith by my works (James 2:18).

Eric L. Padgett

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

There is one God and father of all, one Lord, one Spirit, one body, the church, one faith, one baptism and one hope (Eph. 4:4-6). “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD” (Deut. 6:4).

There are two great lights, one to rule the day and one to rule the night (Gen. 1:16). There were two tables of stone upon which the commandments were written (Ex. 31:18; Deut. 4:13). There are two covenants and two great commandments and two comings of the Lord (Heb. 8:7; Matt. 22:38,39; Heb. 9:28).

There are three elements to the substance of man, body soul and spirit (I Thess. 5:23). The Lord was three days and three nights in the belly of the earth just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish (Matt. 12:40). There are three persons in the Godhead: “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one” (I John 5:7-8).

The river that came out of Eden turned into four rivers (Gen. 2:10). The world is said to have four corners (Rev. 7:1). There were four pillars in the tabernacle on which the veil hung that separated the holy place from the most holy place (Ex. 26:32,33). In Ezekiel’s vision there were four living creatures with four faces and four wings (Ezek. 1:5,6). John’s vision reveals there are four beasts full of eyes around the Throne of God (Rev. 4:6-8). Jesus’ garments were parted into four parts (John 19:23). There are four gospel accounts that tell us of the life and teaching of Jesus.

There are five books of law in the Pentateuch, Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. There are five offerings in the tabernacle service: Burnt offerings, meal offerings, peace offerings, sin offerings and trespass offerings (Lev. 1-5). There were two sets of five curtains (Ex. 26:3), two sets of five bars (Ex. 26:26,27), five pillars at the entrance of the tabernacle and five sockets holding them (Ex. 26:37). Excluding the ark of the covenant, there were five objects associated with the tabernacle: the great altar (which was five cubits by five cubits), the laver, the table of shewbread, the candlestick and the altar of incense. There are five steps in the plan of salvation: hear, believe, repent, confess, and be baptized.

God created man on the sixth day (Gen. 1:24-31; Ex. 20:11). Because of this, man is to work six days (Ex. 20:9). The glory of the Lord covered Mt. Sinai six days before He called unto Moses (Ex. 24:16). Under the law, a Hebrew slave was to serve only six years (Ex. 21:2). Jesus turned the water in six waterpots into wine (John 2:6-10). The number of the beast in the Book of Revelation 666 (Rev. 13:18).

Seven is the number of completion and perfection. The Lord rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had made (Gen. 2:1-3). Seven of each clean beast was taken on the ark (Gen. 7:2). The Passover was a feast of seven days (Ex. 12:15). God’s word is purified seven times (Psalm 12:6). The Bible records Jesus as healing seven times on the Sabbath (Matt. 12:9; Mark 1:21, 29; Luke 13:11; 14:2; John 5:8,9; 9:14) and He taught us to forgive seventy times seven (Matt. 18:22).

Eight souls were saved by water (I Pet. 3:20). At eight year old a child was to be circumcised (Gen. 17:12). Interestingly, the New Testament was written by eight men: Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, James, Peter and Jude. Equally interesting is the fact that the number of Jesus’ name in Greek is 888.

On the ninth day of the seventh month the children of Israel were to observe a fast for the Day of Atonement (Lev. 23:26-32). Jesus died the ninth hour (Matt. 27:46-50). There were nine gifts of the Spirit in the first century (I Cor. 12:7-11) and there are nine fruits of the Spirit described by Paul in Galatians 5:22,23: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance.

In Genesis 1, the expression “God said” is found ten times. There were ten generations living before the Flood (Gen. 5). There were ten plagues which convinced Pharaoh to let the children of Israel leave Egypt. The boards in the tabernacle were to be ten cubits in length (Ex. 26:16). There were ten commandments given by God on the two tables of stone (Deut. 10:4). On the tenth day of the first month the Passover Lamb was chosen and on the tenth day of the seventh month was the Day of Atonement (Ex. 12:3; Lev. 23:27).

Eleven curtains were made for the outer covering of the tabernacle (Ex. 26:7-9).

There were twelve sons of Jacob and twelve tribes of the children of Israel (Gen. 49:12). The Bible records Jesus’ visit to the temple at twelve years old (Luke 2:42). Christ chose twelve apostles (Matt. 10:2). In the Book of Revelation the redeemed are depicted as 144,000 or twelve times twelve (Rev. 7:1-8; 14:1). Heaven is depicted as having twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, with names written thereon “which are the names of the twelve tribes of Israel” (Rev. 21:10-13). The Heavenly city has twelve foundations and in the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb (21:14). The city lay foursquare twelve thousand furlongs, or twelve times 1000, another number for completeness (10 times 10).

Eric L. Padgett