dilemma w/ limited funds: Monographs or Primary texts

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Unix | Forum Activity | Posted: Sun, Apr 20 2014 4:03 AM

I'm trying to cut down on costs by ordering as tiny a base-package as possible - a denominational Starter.

During the sales I tried to add a few monographs, and I might have missed something more by Craig Evans as I devoted quite little time going through the offers - I was in Turkey admiring Ancient Christian Cities, with an archaeologist as a guide.

I'm wondering if I should try to add Nag Hammadi Texts and the Bible: A Synopsis and Index to my somewhat big order (could negotiate the price down a bit I guess, although I'm not-sure the rep I'm using is going to give me good discounts, he seemed not to have patience with me as I added more books to the order one-by-one - but I'll try to say on phone that I'm sorry about that). This order in itself is not that big, but I have pre-pubs: Old Testament for Everyone (is there some other, very recent set which is not much more expensive, on those books of the Bible, by multiple authors?) + $63.90 worth of individual titles/collections - of which Select Works of Raymond E. Brown (4 vols.) scheduled to ship tomorrow would be possible to cancel if funds are that tight (which they probably are) (although it would make a nice complement to AYBC NT that I have in Accordance).

So I have been trying to add all kinds of books to the order, but after this order I won't place any more big orders for quite a while, and my various uni theological classes aren't starting in the Autumn 2014 (instead I will be taking a Gk class first in the uni), I am taking a somewhat advanced Hermeneutics class at the moment, but I bought all the books for it before it started. We were given one of the books in the Hermeneutics class as a photocopy in Swedish, so I might just get rid of the English copy in Logos by returning it.

What should my priorities be? Should I for example cancel Old Testament for Everyone or the base-package and wait for L6, and get Nag Hammadi (of which I have a translation since OLL which is said to be poor)?
Here's the monographs + a commentary on two verses and a grammar:
Justification: Five views $8.97
To See and Not Perceive: Isaiah 6:9-10 ... by Evans $28.67
Greek Accents: A Student's Manual $5
An Unsettling God: The Heart of the Hebrew Bible by Brueggemann $12.57
Crucifixion: In the Ancient World and the Folly of the Message of the Cross by Hengel $9.95
Bones of Contention: A Creationist Assessment of Human Fossils ... if I manage to negotiate a 25% discount
The latter is perhaps the least necessary although I'm not sure if there are many equal books out there and I do have a friend in the archipelago with whom I could discuss it provided that he would get an own copy in print.
I can see that the Evans volume is expensive, but it would be a shame not to include anything by him. The Brueggemann volume may be required in uni unless they change to some other books - which they very well may do as they are going to make changes starting Autumn 2015. I was thinking last Summer whether to buy it with Barne's n' Noble Nook Book, but it's so expensive there too and it was troublesome to buy with a non-North American debit card.

I really can't afford Charlesworth Pseudepigrapha, so I will buy volume 1 (out of 2 volumes) later on as printed matter even though it's not much cheaper than buying both volumes in print.

In a pinch, the Hengel book is not necessarily worth that much money, but won't be deeply discounted many more times and several forum members recommended it.

I did already cancel a couple of books which I had emailed about to the rep too late to get discounts (one of them, a commentary, was a funny case as I had emailed in time but still not got a discount).

Aply!
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Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 20 2014 8:42 AM

It really depends on your personal reading preferences, and how likely you think you are to read something. I know it's hard making these decisions, but as we've said before, I think you are a better judge of that than the collective wisdom of the forum.

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 20 2014 9:07 AM

In a lot of ways, Unix, this is like trying to tell you what to order at a restaurant. I suggest the fish...but, you don't like fish. I suggest the spinach Madeleine...but, you don't like spinach. I would never put Nag Hammadi materials above "real" Bible-related books, but that's me. Obviously, it has some appeal to you. But, by my taste and preference, forget Nag Hammadi, especially if you are on a budget. Pick up the monographs that appeal to you. Also, for what it's worth, there is a recent thread where folks have complained about the OT for Everyone not being of the same quality as the NT series. I have no opinion on that, since I haven't read either.

Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 20 2014 9:53 AM

I have to tell myself that won't ever have time to read through or utilize somehow all of my books. Also I can't cover everything.


Well, I like so many things - that's a part of the problem. The biggest pre-pub I could cancel has to do with Church History:

David Paul:
In a lot of ways, Unix, this is like trying to tell you what to order at a restaurant. I suggest the fish...but, you don't like fish. I suggest the spinach Madeleine...but, you don't like spinach.


It may not fulfill everyone's expectations, but I would only require it to suffice as a start, and I require it to be recent. I've read that it glosses over some sections by merely summarizing them - and that's AOK by me:

David Paul:
Also, for what it's worth, there is a recent thread where folks have complained about the OT for Everyone not being of the same quality as the NT series. I have no opinion on that, since I haven't read either.

Aply!
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Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 20 2014 2:07 PM

In the short run:
Would it be better to start cancelling the monograph (collections) above $39?
Or Vyrso and Easter sale products?

In the long run: would it be better to cancel New Testament commentary sets and upgrades (New Testament library being the most expensive one, future Hermeneia and ICC upgrades also being very expensive), or to cancel Church History?

I'm thinking of ordering a printed matter book that pulls together/describes various Primary texts (also in Logos and was on March Madness sale), so that I could share it with the friend who is great at grammar: http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/1565634098/ref=tmm_hrd_used_olp_sr?ie=UTF8&condition=used&sr=1-1&qid=1398026289

$28.60 + shipping from Bolerium Books (above link) or $29.96 + shipping from Better World Books http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ancient-Texts-for-New-Testament-Studies-A-Guide-to-the-Background-Literature-/251490098079?pt=US_Texbook_Education&hash=item3a8dfa5b9f#shpCntId.
... but I think I'll postpone the purchase a little bit.
Too bad Primary Texts such as Pseudepigrapha can't be bought one-by-one - in good translations - I would hate to pick up flawed translations for example online and a PB would not work that well.

Aply!
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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 20 2014 4:42 PM

Unix:

In the short run:
Would it be better to start cancelling the monograph (collections) above $39?
Or Vyrso and Easter sale products?

In the long run: would it be better to cancel New Testament commentary sets and upgrades (New Testament library being the most expensive one, future Hermeneia and ICC upgrades also being very expensive), or to cancel Church History?

I think you're going back to the same thing Unix; i.e. asking people to tell you what to do - And nobody will do that.  You need to decide what's best for you.  It's ok to ask someone "Hey, what do you guys think about X resource?" to get some information on a given product, but to ask "do you think I should cancel X product and order Y product instead?" That's a no, no.  It's a choice you need to make based on your needs.

You may not see it this way, but buying base packages is the best way to build your library, even if there are books you'll never read.  For example, with all the money you've spent on "picking cherries" you would have a great base package and would have added to that base package a bunch of other resources you need or even want.  Gold Base Package contains the Nag Hammadi Library you want and other stuff you could use and perhaps have purchased separate and spent more than that base package costs.  

If you had a base package and add to that other monographs you need then you would be all set.  Instead, you have chosen to go "cherry picking" here and there and as a result you have ended up spending more than you really need and returning more stuff that you thought you needed, but you really didn't.

So, to keep it short and sweet, it's your job to decide what to cancel and what not to cancel.  If you have any doubts then go to your university teachers to ask them what exactly is it that you need in order to make your studies easier; but I don't think the forum is the place to go to ask what it is that you need and what you don't need.  That's your call to make; you're the one who's taking the courses at the university not us.

Blessings!

DAL

Posts 7405
DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 20 2014 6:34 PM

Late edit: Correction - The Nag Hammadi you want is different from the one offered in the Gold Package, but still, the point remains the same - You need to make the call as to which orders you cancel or decide to pay for.

Blessing!

DAL

Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 21 2014 5:24 AM

I understand that most(?) people have to go with mid-level base-packages such as Gold. Gold is not the worst base-package for sure, but even so I did give it a lot of thought and have made calculations afterwards too. I have two Bible Study Softwares, the other one is Accordance. Several things are either much cheaper in Accordance (when they have a sale) or only available in Accordance. So there I have things like NETS, Comprehensive Bible, UBS Translator's Handbooks New Testament set (bought used for $115 incl. license transfer fee in Accordance, it has been on a sale in Logos for $250), Anchor Yale Bible Commentary New Testament set, Torah: A Modern Commentary.
But I have the UBS Handbooks Upgrade in Logos, no longer sold separately.

Yesterday I wrote a post about how I follow sales and place orders: Want to Stay Informed but too many emails.
Additionally I want to say that I've tried to be an early-bird, there's incentives for being that. For example commentary set upgrades sometimes disappear, I remember Paideia: Commentaries on the New Testament Upgrade Collection (4 vols.) as one of my best $ spent on commentaries, it was $64.95, those particular volumes can still not be purchased individually.

The most recent commentary sets and upgrades are rarely included in Logos base-packages.

It works well to use different softwares and maintain them (neither is completely free to maintain if wanting to have some of the functionality/compatibility). Getting anything that is offered in either software is a bit luxurious method. But I'm planning on not updating the Accordance software all that often and saving on that.

I'm trying to be efficient about how I spend my time with all this. But I've recently made a promise to my best friend that I will not follow sales like I used to. I have to have more time free for reading.

Having time to read and make highlightings, and the reading of quality books/translations, are my priorities. Time reading low-end books can turn out to be time wasted. It's also hard for me to follow old English, which is just one more reason to go with a newer translation of the Pseudepigrapha than the one which came with Original Languages Library. But I don't buy all newer and better Primary Texts such as Fathers of the Church: Fathers of the Ante-Nicene Era (23 vols.) - both because of cost (it would be better split up, which probably will never happen) and lack of interest.

It also consumes a lot of time trying to sort through and organize books in mid-level base-packages, I know since I've tried out L5 Silver but returned it - as it must take much longer time with Gold. It used to not to take me a whole lot of time, but it takes multiple times longer time to tag library when having many more topics and books of the Bible covered than ever before.

Aply!
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Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 21 2014 9:27 AM

To buy mid-level base-packages or upgrade base-packages frequently, is to rush it. Waiting (and patience, which I have) is the best option. Bundles get split up, new or suggested books come out which may be better and sometimes even cheaper than anything that existed before them, unexpected sales.

I think my decision will be not to upgrade to L5 Anglican Starter, but to order the Old Testament for Everyone pre-pub with my own account and not with the account for friends and my mom, and trying to negotiate down the Nag Hammadi price - if not successful I don't buy it at this point in time.

I'm a bit unsure about The New Testament Library Series (15 vols.). Currently I have a pre-pub order with the account for friends and my mom. My plan is that after the friend is done using it or grows tired of it, I would transfer the license for it to my account. It may very well be that even if I would have it in my own account from start that I would not find time to utilize it.

Aply!
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Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 21 2014 1:28 PM

Trying to finance these and some future purchases and to unclutter my library, I now sold off 26 books (7 of them in John Huss collection) and made $71.96. One of them is included in the L5 Anglican Starter base-package, and another in the Anglican Bronze.

Aply!
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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 21 2014 3:07 PM

Unix:

I think my decision will be...

There you go! That's the way it should be done when it comes to deciding whether to cancel an order or purchase another product instead of one you might want or need.  You realized a Base Package is not for you and you have chosen well for your specific needs.  The same principle of choosing/deciding apply it to whatever it is that you think you want to cancel or not.

Let it always be YOUR decision and not someone else's Yes That's how you'll come to know how to manage your finances better when it comes to purchasing books or anything in life.

Blessings!

DAL

Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 21 2014 3:57 PM

I'll cancel the Old Testament for Everyone pre-pub altogether. Instead I've added one more Raymond E. Brown Collection (this one 5 vols.) to the order: https://www.logos.com/product/5750/raymond-e-brown-collection ... my price for the latter is $99.95.

Aply!
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Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 22 2014 1:17 AM

I feel sorry about not covering the Old Testament better, especially the historical/narrative books and Jer.

Aply!
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Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 22 2014 6:23 AM

bump! People (especially one) who are close to me are telling me not to buy more books and to look for meal recipes instead. Dad specified that he thinks I have enough commentaries already (I had told him on which books of the New Testament I don't have commentaries - he didn't think that's many).
Should I return the first, 4-volume Raymond E. Brown collection?
EDIT: I really should cancel the biggest pre-pub that I have, which is gathering interest. It's not that cheap, I will never find time to read it, and I'm not sure it's about an area which would be so important to be interested in.

Aply!
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Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 22 2014 11:15 AM

Unix, listen to the people who are close to you, not a bunch of strangers on the internet.

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RIP
Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 22 2014 11:35 AM

Unix:
I will never find time to read it, and I'm not sure it's about an area which would be so important to be interested in.

Try this: Read the Bible from cover to cover. Any version and any canon will do. Your soul will be blessed. All the other books are like pickles. They should not be the main meal.

Logos 7 Collectors Edition

Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 22 2014 11:36 AM

But they either have very differing views on theology (therefore it's very difficult to talk with them), or know almost no theology (but that ones is right about that books cost a lot of money) - most of them don't read almost any kind of books all that much. One friend who I can talk to about theology and who is good at grammar hasn't advised me not to buy more books:

Rosie Perera:
listen to the people who are close to you,


But it's nice being able to look things up and to interconnect with "Gnosticism":

Super.Tramp:
Try this: Read the Bible from cover to cover. Any version and any canon will do. Your soul will be blessed. All the other books are like pickles. They should not be the main meal.

Aply!
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Willard Scott | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 22 2014 12:29 PM

 

Unix:
But it's nice being able to look things up and to interconnect with "Gnosticism"
That is SOOO Cool ! Ask for counsel, then dispute, or disregard it. Stick out tongue

Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 22 2014 12:56 PM

Willard, my library is now very close to being usable. So perhaps most of the orders I'm thinking of are the only additional pieces of a jigsaw puzzle that can be motivated at this point.

And I don't think a Bible-only approach is the right one.

Aply!
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Kent | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 22 2014 1:10 PM

Unix:
And I don't think a Bible-only approach is the right one.

The Bible-only approach should be the right one.

Charles Spurgeon:

Oh, that you and I might get into the very heart of the Word of God, and get that Word into ourselves! As I have seen the silkworm eat into the leaf, and consume it, so ought we to do with the Word of the Lord—not crawl over its surface, but eat right into it till we have taken it into our inmost parts. It is idle merely to let the eye glance over the words, or to recollect the poetical expressions, or the historic facts; but it is blessed to eat into the very soul of the Bible until, at last, you come to talk in Scriptural language, and your very style is fashioned upon Scripture models, and, what is better still, your spirit is flavored with the words of the Lord.

I would quote John Bunyan as an instance of what I mean. Read anything of his, and you will see that it is almost like the reading the Bible itself. He had read it till his very soul was saturated with Scripture; and, though his writings are charmingly full of poetry, yet he cannot give us his Pilgrim’s Progress—that sweetest of all prose poems — without continually making us feel and say, “Why, this man is a living Bible!” Prick him anywhere—his blood is Bibline, the very essence of the Bible flows from him. He cannot speak without quoting a text, for his very soul is full of the Word of God. I commend his example to you, beloved.

—”Mr. Spurgeon as a Literary Man,” in The Autobiography of Charles H. Spurgeon, Compiled from His Letters, Diaries, and Records by His Wife and Private Secretary, vol. 4, 1878-1892 (Curtis & Jennings, 1900), p. 268.

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