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The Verse Tab: Review of BibleWorks 9, part 2

August 9, 2012

I continue to be impressed with BibleWorks 9. The new Use Tab is likely my favorite new feature (I posted about it in part 1 of my review). The Verse Tab is another new feature. Here’s how the BibleWorks site describes it:

The Verse Tab tracks with any Bible version. For the current verse under the mouse, it displays the relevant sections in resources such as the CNTTS apparatus, the NET Bible textual notes, the Tischendorf apparatus, Metzger’s Textual Commentary (requires unlock), and the ESV Study Bible (requires unlock).

I will devote a future post to the CNTTS apparatus. Today I want to comment on and review the Verse Tab and its usefulness. Just so you can have a visual of what I’m working with, here’s a layout I’m currently using to look at the Hebrew of Malachi. (Click on the image below for larger.)

(Editorial note. File this under: can you believe that’s in the Bible? I had somehow never noticed this verse until the other day… thou shalt not trifle with the Lord, especially if you’re a priest or pastor. Take obedience to God seriously.)

Here’s the great thing about the Verse Tab. In previous versions of BibleWorks, the NET Bible study notes were only available via the Analysis Window. But this meant that if the Analysis Window were open to an NET study note, you couldn’t also at the same time easily see morphological analysis and lexical data–it was one or the other in that window. Now, however, as you can see above, you can easily access both study notes and a separate analysis window for individual word analysis. I find this new feature an immense help.

The NET study notes are fantastic. (It’s worth reading more about that translation and its notes here.) Honestly, a verse like the one I’ve chosen to highlight above might be a bit jarring to some–although in context it makes perfect sense. Yahweh was dealing with a corrupt and complacent priesthood. They were not making sacrifices in the way he had commanded (and they knew it, too). So his response in context really ought not to be a surprise. The NET note (see superscript number 4 and “tn” in the image above) clarifies that Yahweh is speaking of the entrails of to-be-sacrificed animals. The priests were supposed to dispose of these away from the sacrificial altar, but apparently were not in Malachi’s time. Bad idea. Clicking on Lev. 4:11 in the BibleWorks Search column (far left column) immediately takes me to the verse that explains this requirement.

One other neat thing about the Verse Tab: if you click on the “Expand” button, you can get a free-floating window that shows you all the NET notes for the whole Bible. This is easy to navigate through, as you can imagine:

I welcome the Verse Tab as an addition to the BibleWorks program. I’ve already made heavy use of it and will continue to in the future. For a mere $20 you can buy a module that gives you the notes and maps from the ESV Study Bible in that same tab. The program comes with the NET Bible notes already loaded.

See all that’s new in BibleWorks 9 here.

I received a free upgrade to BibleWorks 9 in exchange for an unbiased review. See my prolegomenon to a review here and part 1 (setup and layout) here. You can order the full program here or upgrade here. It’s on Amazon, too.

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