Unicode converter for Gramcord fonts?

Years ago, the first substantive Biblical Studies software I purchased was Gramcord. The software was a hugely helpful tool at the time but has long since been surpassed by others.

Since the Unicode revolution has taken hold in Biblical Studies software, there are several tools that have popped up for converting legacy fonts (those that make English characters look like Hebrew or Greek). But, I’ve yet to find one that will work with the fonts that came with Gramcord—Greekpar.ttf and Hebpar__.ttf.

Has anyone found a tool that will convert text in these Gramcord fonts to Unicode-compliant characters?

SBL BibLit on iOS

One of the less-than-ideal features of using an iOS device for editing or producing documents in Biblical Studies has been the difficulty of getting standard biblical language fonts (e.g., SBL BibLit) to work on the device. There are now, however, at least a couple solutions:

  1. Chris Heard has discussed how AnyFont can resolve the issue successfully and allow users to install SBL BibLit (or other fonts) onto iOS devices and use them within standard productivity tools (e.g., Pages, Word, Keynote, PowerPoint). In the App Store, AnyFont goes for $1.99.
  2. On the freemium side of things, Fonteer will also do the same thing. Fonteer’s free version allows users to install up to 3 fonts. So, if you anticipate only using this number or fewer, the free version will do the job. Fonteer premium (also $1.99 via in-app purchase) allows unlimited fonts to be installed. Below is an example of Fonteer working with a draft excerpt from my essay in Explorations in Interdisciplinary Reading.

Example of Fonteer working with SBL BibLit

Bates, Abraham, and allegiance in the gospel

At the Logos Academic Blog, Tavis Bohlinger has part 4 in his interview series with Matthew Bates about Bates’s recently released Salvation by Allegiance Alone: Rethinking Faith, Works, and the Gospel of Jesus the King (Baker, 2017). Bates comments, in part,

My preference for “allegiance” springs from the conviction that the proclaimed gospel centered on Jesus the royal messiah, and this suggests that the “allegiance” portion of the range of meaning of pistis is in play in some crucial New Testament texts pertaining to salvation…. It is extremely unlikely that Paul felt that pistis was something that was ultimately in tension with or contradictory to embodied activity (i.e., good works as a general category). Paul’s complaint with works (of Law) lies elsewhere, as I explain in Ch. 5.

For the balance of the interview, see the original post at theLAB. Apparently, I’d overlooked part 3 of the series, which is, of course, also available at the LAB. So, for prior discussion of the volume, see also Bates at theLAB, part 2Other discussion of Bates, “Salvation by allegiance”Bates interview at theLAB, and Bates, “Salvation by allegiance alone” and some theological forebears.

Strack and Billerbeck via Internet Archive

The Internet Archive has PDF scans freely available three volumes of Hermann Strack and Paul Billerbeck’s Kommentar zum Neuen Testament aus Talmud und Midrasch (München: Beck, 1922–1961):

Each of the files is reasonably large (75.7–81.5 MB). So, they may take some time to load on slower connections or browsers.

As a side note, these PDFs cover the whole New Testament. But, the SBL Handbook of Style notes a 6-volume edition of Strack and Billerbeck’s work (§6.4.7). Does anyone with better knowledge of the 6-volume version know whether (a) volumes 4–6 have contents beyond those of volumes 1–3 listed above, (b) the 6-volume version is simply a different printing of the 3-volume version, or (c) something else?

Biblical references in writing theology

Earlier this month, Rick Brannan posted an analysis of the most frequently cited in a selection of systematic theologies. Rick has since made available on his blog the bibliography of systematic theologies that fed this analysis.

Meanwhile, Christianity Today picked up the post for further discussion. According to CT,

Perhaps most interesting—and potentially disturbing—is the dearth of Old Testament references among the 100 most-cited verses. This raises the question of whether the Old Testament is necessary for Christian theology, and whether it should be included in systematic theology more often.

Is such a strong preference for the same key verses, especially those in the New Testament, a problem in systematic theology? CT asked experts to weigh in.

There then follows a paragraph each from Kevin Vanhoozer, Craig Keener, John Stackhause, Michael Bird, Michael Allen, and William Dyrness.

Now Brannan has followed up at theLAB with the promised corresponding analysis for biblical theologies. This new analysis comments in part,

What is immediately striking to me is the frequency of Old Testament references. Systematic theologies had nine OT references in the top 100. In Biblical theologies, seven of the top ten references are from the Old Testament, and 29 of the top 100.

Twenty-nine is markedly larger than nine. But, the still-substantial slant to the New Testament perhaps suggests a tendency to do primarily “New Testament biblical theology” in practice, if not always in title. As a balancing resource, perhaps we need a new sub-publishing genre of “Old Testament biblical theology”?

More from JGRChJ in 2016

Since the last time I mentioned the Journal of Greco-Roman Christianity and Judaism, several new articles have been posted to the 2016 volume. These are:

  • Preston T. Massey, “Women, Talking and Silence: 1 Corinthians 11.5 and 14.34-35 in the Light of Greco-Roman Culture
  • Hughson T. Ong, “The Language of the New Testament from a Sociolinguistic Perspective”
  • Jonathan M. Watt Geneva, “Semitic Language Resources of Ancient Jewish Palestine”
  • Stanley E. Porter, “The Use of Greek in First-Century Palestine: A Diachronic and Synchronic Examination”

For context, the latter three essays are introduced by the additional entry “The Languages Of First-Century Palestine: An Introduction To Three Papers.”

For the essays or to subscribe to the JGRChJ feed, please see the JGRChJ website.

HT: Rick Brannan

Logos 7 Basic for free

Choosing a platform for Biblical Studies software can be tricky, inasmuch as trying things out for yourself is probably the best mechanism for finding what will work for you. But, obviously, you want to do that trying out before you commit to one of the options. This process is now a bit simpler with Logos 7 Basic, which is available for free.

HT: Tyler Smith. For available trial versions of other Biblical Studies software, including Logos, see Trial versions of Biblical Studies software.