Researching the gospel and salvation through church history for comparison

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Bob | Forum Activity | Posted: Sat, Dec 15 2018 8:02 AM

I'd like to use Logos to research the various views and ways of understanding/communicating the gospel and salvation through church history.

In modern times, we have zoomed in on ways to explain/understand the gospel (which also influences our message to the lost and how we encourage them to come to faith). As useful as those are, I'd like to understand how they compare to previous periods of the church.

Essentially I have an old Logos 6 Platinum base package updated to Logos 7 Gold and Logos 8 Silver, plus some other items like ACCS. So I have some writings of the fathers, some church history, some theology, etc.

But I'm not sure how to use Logos effectively to find the relevant source information and any modern perspectives on the subject. Especially how to find source or researched historical based information in the midst of the great bulk of "regular" modern theology on the subject.

Would appreciate any tips or help!

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Dec 15 2018 11:37 AM

I'd start with some of the resources on Bible interpretation and preaching, for example 

History of Biblical Interpretation (4 vols.) by Henning Graf Reventlow

The Reading and Preaching of the Scriptures in the Worship of the Christian Church (7 vols.) by Old, Hughes Oliphant


Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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John Fidel | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Dec 16 2018 5:18 AM

Hi Bob,

There are a number of ways to approach this subject:

  1. Topically: For example how were various subjects dealt with historically.
  2. Exegetically: How was a verse or pericope in the Bible interpreted historically.
  3. Read resources available in Logos on the subject, such as MJ's suggest.

Here are a few ideas, but to get the most out of your library, you will need to tag or create collections so you can target resources with possible information more easily.

Topical research:

I created a customized a Topic Guide and include sections for various collections and tags that I have created in my library. This custom Topic Guide will search for headings in the resources in each collection. Below is a sample guide showing how the guide works in finding relevant material. Of course, it takes time to tag and or create collections, but if you review the forums and, you will find suggestions for building these collections.

I typed communion and waited for suggestions to drop down and selected the Lord's Supper. Here is an article from my History and Biography collection. I can show you many more relevant articles in other sections if you wish.

Here is a link to the forum that has a word doc file you can download and then cut and paste to tag or create collections from various Theology resources that may assist in designating them by period of time and denominational view:

Exegetical Study:

Similarly, you can create a custom guide for exegetical study from the Biblical text. There are already many sections in the default PG that are applicable such as Ancient Literature, Cultural Concept, Confessional Documents, Biblical Theologies, Systematic Theologies etc. You can add commentaries broken out by period of time they were written if you create collections to do so. This will give you an historic view of how the pericope has been interpreted over time. You can find suggestions for these collections here:

In addition you can add other collections you may have created such as Church History etc.


MJ's suggested resource is great. You can also go to and type in Church Fathers; Church History etc. 

Hope this helps.

Posts 46
Bob | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 17 2018 7:10 AM

John - Appreciate the information. This should be enough to give me some traction on my searches, and even provide some reusable help for future searches.

The tip on historical exegesis by time frame looks extremely valuable. Considering patristics and history-based (e.g. Church Histories) resources separately will also be helpful, and I'll check further on how to apply custom topical collections.

MJ - Thanks for pointing out those resources. I've added them to my wish list for future consideration as budget allows.

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