Does BibleWorks Have Commentaries, Biographies, Lectionaries, Tutorials, or Devotional Material?


Those wishing to integrate other texts into BibleWorks can incorporate any such texts to at least some degree, of course, in one of these ways:
-- using the BibleWorks Custom Modules facility described in the BibleWorks Help. Check the list of User-Created BibleWorks Databases
for texts already formatted for BibleWorks.
-- using the facility described here to integrate EPUB-format texts.

BibleWorks has also entered into an agreement with the WORDsearch corporation that makes a substantial number of WORDsearch's resources of this nature available in a BibleWorks-compatible format.  Click here for a list of these resources.

Regarding inclusion of texts in the distributed BibleWorks product itself, the
BibleWorks Vision Statement notes: "Our goal is to provide a complete package containing the tools most essential for the task of interpreting the Scriptures in the original Greek and Hebrew, and to do it at a price that poor pastors and students can afford." While commentaries, biographies, lectionaries, and devotionals are surely useful, their inclusion in BibleWorks is limited for the following reasons:

1. In that the focus of BibleWorks is on study of the Bible text, the resources in BibleWorks are mostly Bibles and Bible texts in the original languages and in translation. We include language-study aids such as grammars, lexicons and dictionaries, together with integrated tools for exegesis (the diagramming module, the Key Word in Context module, and the Parallel Aligned BHS-LXX texts are a few examples).

2. The commitment of BibleWorks is to provide this product at a price that poor pastors and students can afford. Adding additional resources to our base package inflates product cost. Adding them as extra-cost modules also involves a cost (increasing the product price) unless there is a significant demand over which module formatting and proofreading costs can be spread.

We continue to encourage our users to think carefully before building large electronic libraries, for three reasons.

     a. First, there is no guarantee computers will, in as few as ten years, be able to read today's electronic media. For example, read "'Digital Dark Age' may doom some data" from the University of Illinois (Oct. 27, 2008), "At Libraries, Taking the (Really) Long View" from Inside Higher Ed, July 23, 2008, and "The Digital Ice Age," Popular Mechanics, December 2006.

     b. More significantly, almost all electronic libraries are in proprietary formats: there is no standard. Proprietary formats, and the software that reads them, come and go (remember DOS? microfiche? eight-track players?). At one time, a portable format called STEP was proposed for Biblical literature, but it didn't succeed, and the likelihood of a standard format now emerging is very low. When an electronic library's proprietary format is abandoned, one's investment in the library is lost.

     c.  Finally, in most cases buyers do not own electronic books and therefore cannot transfer them to another person (in a will, for example).  All one purchases is a license to use the content of an electronic book.
  Such a license is vulnerable to being revoked, as an April 2014 article from World magazine, "Liberty As Secure As Your Books," points out.

Books, on the other hand, are independent of computers. If you use certain reference works on a daily basis, it may make sense to purchase electronic editions, and, for this reason, we are providing (and will continue to provide) a limited collection of locked electronic resources for those who want them. But in our opinion it makes sense to buy print editions first, then electronic editions if you find you really need them.

Last Update: RRG/February 1, 2018