Verbum Tip 5aa: Bible Search – Review: Search operators; Scripture study - Composition history

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Posted: Fri, Feb 19 2021 10:03 PM

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Bible Search Review: Operators

Search operators are the elements between search terms:

  • Text – no markers
  • Text phrase – enclosed in quotation marks “”
  • Datatype (simple) – enclosed in brackets <>
  • (Term modifier) Search field – separated by colon without spaces :
  • Label datatype – enclosed in curly brackets {}
  • Datatype with extension – enclosed in curly brackets {}

Parenthesis () are used to control the sequence of processing.

Logic and lists

AND (or space)

OR (or comma)

ANDNOT

Proximity

EQUALS (i.e. same location)

ANDEQUALS

NOTEQUALS

BEFORE

BEFORE n WORDS

BEFORE n CHARACTERS

AFTER

AFTER n WORDS

AFTER n CHARACTERS

WITHIN

WITHIN n WORDS

WITHIN n CHARACTERS

NEAR (i.e., within about 48 characters)

INTERSECTS

NOT INTERSECTS, NOT BEFORE, NOT AFTER, NOT WITHIN, NOT NEAR, NOT EQUALS, AND NOT

Reference operators

~

=

(space)

intersect

superset

subset

Term modifiers: language codes

aramaic

chinese

coptic

czech

dutch

english

french

german

greek

hebrew

italian

latin

portuguese

translit

spanish

syriac

 

Term modifiers: matching commands

All languages will support:

• [match marks] — makes all non-spacing marks significant. Equivalent to Logos 3 “marks()”.

• [match nomarks] — ignores all non-spacing marks, regardless of language defaults.

• [match exact] — equivalent to the Logos 3 “exact()” term modifier.

• [match all] — a synonym for “exact”

 

Some languages will support:

• [match case] — matches sensitive to capital/lowercase letters

• [match all word forms] – matches forms with same lemma

 

Hebrew/Aramaic

• [match vowels]

• [match dagesh]

• [match accents]

• [match massora]

• [match rafe]

• [match critical]

• [match pointed]

• [match cantillated]

• [match holem-haser]

 

Greek

• [match iota-subscript]

• [match dieresis]

• [match breathing]

• [match accents]

• [match technical-marks]

• [match unaccented]

• [match polytonic]

 

Syriac

• [match vowels]

• [match silent]

• [match begadkephat]

• [match grammar]

• [match barrekh]

• [match music]

• [match accents]

• [match dialect]

• [match abbrev]

Wildcards

* (zero or more characters)

? (single character)

Aside: Composition History Questions

At this point we have explored:

  • How to search for a name as an introduction
  • Resources that can be searched via Everything Search
  • Biblical data that can be searched via the Bible Browser
  • Basics of a Bible Search

Which puts us in a position to start applying what we know with methods of Bible study. There is a reading list “Catholic Bible Interpretation” which lists some of the resources available in Verbum. Clicking on the reading list should open the list in a narrow panel on the left. It is normally opened through the Tool Menu..

There are check boxes (very faint in the screen shot) to mark resources as read. I highly encourage everyone to keep reading “how to” resources or examples of good reading of scripture no longer how experienced you feel.  Other minds will always provide a slant that would not occur to you without the external nudge.

Our approach to Bible study is taken directly from the work of Felix Just, S. J. on his Biblical Exegesis: An Introductory Overview web page.

Various Methods of Biblical Exegesis / Interpretation:

The following table lists many different approaches or methods of biblical interpretation, as grouped in the document "The Interpretation of the Bible in the Church," by the Pontifical Biblical Commission (1993).

A) The Historical-Critical Method

Questions Typically Asked:

Composition History Questions

Who is the author of the work?  What do we know about him/her/them?
Is the attributed author the actual author, or is the work pseudepigraphic?
When, where, and under what circumstances was the work written?
Who were the original recipients?  Where did they live?

Traditional Literary Criticism

What words are used, and what range of meanings do they have?
What images and symbols are used, and what do they signify?
What characters appear in the story? What do we know about them?
How are the characters related to one another in the story?

Comparison of Translations

Are there any significant differences between various modern translations?
When were these translations done, using which translation philosophies?
Which ancient Hebrew or Greek texts underlie the various translations?
Has anything been lost or obscured in the process of translation?

Textual Criticism

Are there any variant readings in the ancient manuscripts?
Are the variants negligible (mere spelling) or significant (affecting meaning)?
Can the variants be explained as intentional changes, or as accidental ones?
How do the literary or historical contexts help explain the variant readings?

Source Criticism

Does the text have any underlying source or sources?
Which version of a source was used, in case there is more than one?
What do the sources actually say and mean in their original contexts?
How are the sources used (quoted, paraphrased, adapted?) in the later text?

Form Criticism

What is the literary form or “genre” of the whole work and the particular text?
Does the text follow or diverge from the usual expectations for this genre?
What is the normal purpose/goal of this genre?
In what social context would texts of this genre have been used?

Redaction Criticism

How has the author used the source(s) in shaping this text?
Are there any parallel texts, and how is this text similar and/or different?
What particular views or theological emphases does this author show?
How did the author’s life circumstances affect the shaping of the text?

Socio-Historical Criticism

If the story claims to be historical, what really happened?
What social, historical, or cultural information can be gleaned from the text?
What background information is necessary to better understand the text?
What was life like for the common people, not just the ruling elites?

B) New Methods of Literary Analysis

Questions Typically Asked:

Rhetorical Analysis

What message is the author trying to convey?
Is the author attempting to instruct, inspire, defend, or persuade the reader?
What rhetorical techniques does he use to achieve his goals?

Narrative Analysis

Who are the characters in the story? What roles do they play?
What is the plot sequence?  What narrative time is covered?
What is the author’s and/or narrator’s point of view?

Semiotic Analysis

What deeper patterns of meaning are conveyed by the words and symbols?

 

C) Approaches Based on Tradition

Questions Typically Asked:

Canonical Approach

Where does this text belong in the literary context of the entire Bible?
How is this text related to prior texts and/or later texts in the Bible?
How does its location in the Canon affect the meaning of this text?

Using Jewish Interpretative Traditions

How do traditional Jewish methods of interpretation read this text?
Are there any parallel or similar stories in Rabbinic literature?
Do Jewish and Christian interpretations of this text differ significantly?

History of Interpretation
(Wirkungsgeschichte)

How was this text interpreted by the “Church Fathers” and in later centuries?
Is the text interpreted differently by various churches and denominations?
How has the text been interpreted in art, music, liturgy, and popular culture?

D) Apps. Using the Human Sciences

Questions Typically Asked:

Sociological Approach

What insights from Sociology can help in the interpretation of the text?
What patterns of human social behavior are evident in the text?

Cultural Anthropology Approach

What models from Cultural Anthropology can help us understand the text?
What cultural presuppositions/patterns affect the interpretation of the text?

Psychological/Psychoanalytical Apps.

How can the text be interpreted using various theories from Psychology?
Can the text help us understand the human psyche better?

E) Contextual Approaches

Questions Typically Asked:

Liberationist Approach

Has this text been used for domination of oppressed people? How?
Can this text be used for the liberation of the poor/disadvantaged? How?
Can other texts counteract the detrimental effects of oppressive texts?

Feminist Approach

Does the text evidence gender bias?  Was later interpretation also biased?
How is the meaning of the text affected if read from a feminist perspective?
What other texts can be recovered and used to balance out biased texts?

Questions to ask for composition history

  • Who is the author of the work? 
  • What do we know about him/her/them?
  • Is the attributed author the actual author, or is the work pseudepigraphic?
  • When, where, and under what circumstances was the work written?
  • Who were the original recipients?  
  • Where did they live?

Factbook

Factbook can be used as a starting point for gathering the (provisional) answers to these questions. For examples, we will use The Gospel According to Mark:

The section “Bible Book Guide” has two sections that appear to directly related to our questions:

If one expands Origin, subtopics are exposed:

  • Authorship
  • Date
  • Purpose

While expanding Background exposes:

  • Historical Context
  • Recipients
  • Location

In each subtopic, the first five references are shown with a “More” exposing additional sources. The current prioritization does not promote Catholic sources above other reputable sources.

The standard behavior applies – preview of the article on mouse-over, open to the article on click, drag-and-drop to control where it opens.

Also standard – the resource preview:

 

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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NB.Mick | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 20 2021 4:28 AM

MJ. Smith:

There is a reading list “Catholic Bible Interpretation” which lists some of the resources available in Verbum. Clicking on the reading list should open the list in a narrow panel on the left. It is normally opened through the Tool Menu.

....[screen shot from factbook]....

There are check boxes (very faint in the screen shot) to mark resources as read.

I think you may have put the wrong screenshot and meant to share something like this:

Running Logos 9 latest (beta) version on Win 10

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 20 2021 11:18 AM

Thank you. I've repair it. I do wish they would update the forum software so going from Word to the forum was more straight forward.

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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Dave Hooton | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Feb 21 2021 4:32 AM

MJ. Smith:

Search operators are the elements between search terms:

  • Text – no markers

That may not be understood.

Search operators are the elements between search terms like:

    makes it clearer that it is a list of search terms.

MJ. Smith:

EQUALS (i.e. same location)

ANDEQUALS

NOTEQUALS

ANDEQUALS or EQUALS (terms have exact same location)

NOTEQUALS or NOT EQUALS  (terms not in same location)

MJ. Smith:
NEAR (i.e., within about 48 characters)

within 48 CHARS. The only approximation is the number of words (roughly 8-10 words).

MJ. Smith:
? (single character)

? will match 1 character in a word, and also matches zero characters at the end of a word.

e.g. lord? matches “lord”, “lords”, but not “lorded” nor “lord’s”.

Dave
===

Windows 10 & Android 8

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Feb 21 2021 7:55 PM

Dave Hooton:

MJ. Smith:

Search operators are the elements between search terms:

  • Text – no markers

That may not be understood.

Because I have been consistent in this terminology throughout the series, I'm comfortable it will be understood. I've made the other changes suggested. Thanks for your input.

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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