Award-winning writer Kathy Widenhouse has helped hundreds of nonprofits and writers produce successful content and has gained 600K+ views for her writing tutorials. She is the author of 9 books. See more of Kathy’s content here.
An online devotional for writers
They searched the Scriptures day after day. As a result, many believed.(Acts 17:11-12, NLT)
For today’s writers, a search engine is an indispensable tool. I use a search engine nearly every day, whether it’s to research statistics for an article or to check out an expert’s credentials.
A search engine is a computer program that looks for words or terms across the web. The results of the search are returned in a list, also called search engine results pages (SERPs). AOL Search, Ask, Bing, Dogpile, Google, and Yahoo! are examples of popular search engines.
I like to think of a concordance as a special type of search engine.
When I search online, I type in a keyword and the engine returns a list of web references for that term. In the same way, when I use a concordance, I look up a keyword and get a list of references in the Bible where the word appears in scripture.
Search engine results lead me to websites that are new to me. And my concordance results often lead me to parts of the Bible that are unfamiliar or less-studied. Just as different search engines return slightly different results, concordances are translation-specific and return slightly different results for different Bible versions.
But here’s big difference: when I examine search engine results, I rarely go beyond the first page. Yet when I study the Bible, I can use a concordance to conduct a thorough word study. An exhaustive concordance, for instance, identifies each occurrence of a keyword in a specific translation. The list allows me to study that keyword or term in depth, which leads to a more meaningful revelation and subsequently more profound content.
The Bereans modeled this approach. They were open minded and listened eagerly to Paul’s message about Jesus. Then they searched the Scriptures day after day to verify the truth.
And as a result of that extensive search, many believed (Acts 17:11-12).
That’s what can happen for you and your readers when you search the Bible with depth.
Deep research leads to more meaningful content.
Thank you for the ocean of information that is available to me with the click of a mouse or the turn of a page. Let me be faithful to conduct thorough research, especially when I study your Word, so I can write meaningful content.
In Jesus’s name, Amen.
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