Dan Wallace—Free Course on Textual Criticism

Right now Credo Courses is offering the audio format of Daniel Wallace’s course in textual criticism for free. Wallace is one of the preeminent conservative scholars in this field so this is a great opportunity. I don’t know how long this will be available for, but you can check it out here. It’s easy to create an account, and once you have “purchased” it (no credit card is necessary, I did this just moments ago) you can download it at your convienience—it will be in your account forever.

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2 Quick Tips to Make Your Smartphone Less Distracting.

I have a love-hate relationship with my iPhone. On one hand it does increase efficiency, yet on the other hand, it immediately tries to steal back any time it may have saved. Social media, games, and entertainment seem to beg for time and attention.

It’s important to remember that productivity is not merely a secular concern (as if there were such a thing). Productivity is part of our sanctification. To be unproductive is to be unholy. Paul writes, “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time” (Eph. 5:15-16a). A growing part of this responsibility includes how we interact with technology, especially our smartphones.

For this reason, I have tried to organize my phone in such a way that distractions are kept to a minimum and productivity is emphasized. Here are two ways I’ve found to do this.

1. Purge.
Get rid of unproductive apps that tend to suck up time. Not only will this save valuable space on your device, it will free up valuable time in your day. If you find yourself impulsively opening Facebook or Angry Birds during downtime, you are probably wasting more time than you realize. Delete all such impulse-apps until you can develop better habits of time management. After replacing time spent scrolling through social media with more edifying endeavors you may decide to avoid these apps permanently.

2. Organize.
Arrange icons so that the more edifying apps are prominent and accessible, while potentially distracting ones are harder to navigate to. So, for example, games and social media apps (ones you may choose to keep) go inside a folder on the second or third screen, while the first screen and “dock” are reserved for apps relating to productivity, spiritual growth, and education.

Here is a simple screenshot of how I am doing this at the moment.

My first screen and dock are reserved for apps I have found more valuable and less distracting. Other apps are stowed away out-of-sight on other screens.

My first screen and dock are reserved for apps I have found more valuable and less distracting. Other apps are stowed away out-of-sight on other screens.

These tips are simple, but they have noticeably limited distractions on my phone and improved my productivity. If you have come across any other helpful smartphone related tips I’d love to hear them!

“What’s Best Next” only $1.99 today. 

Matt Perman’s book What’s Best Next is on sale today for only $1.99 (Kindle Edition). What’s Best Next is a book on productivity (think Getting Things Done, et al.) from the perspective of a Christian worldview. I began reading Perman’s book over Christmas break but put it on hold when school started back. Now that I’ve finished my undergraduate degree (!) I plan on picking it back up this Summer. You can grab the Kindle edition here.

“I have been learning from Matt Perman for nearly twenty years, and I am eager for leaders around the world to benefit from his work the way that I have. To my knowledge, there is no one writing today who has thought more deeply about the relationship between the gospel and productivity. You will find in these pages a unique and remarkable combination of theological insight, biblical instruction, and practical counsel that would change the world if put into practice. I could not recommend it more highly.” –Justin Taylor


Excellent Koine Greek help for iOS users

I recently came across a great Greek vocab help for students using Mounce’s text. If you own an iOS device (iPad, iPhone, iPod touch) Danny Zacharias recently released a Mounce vocabulary app called “FlashGreek” (I believe they may make it for other Greek Grammars as well). At $6 it’s a no-brainer. In addition to the vocab app they have a parsing app called “ParseGreek” which allows you practice parsing vocab words chosen by chapter (this particular app is designed to be compatible with several different Greek grammars which you can choose from within the app).

Check out his website for more info on which apps will work best for your needs.