The “Beitzel Photo Library” available when using Logos software is a photo library of Bible locations that includes 14,000 photos of Biblical places for only $29.99. This seems like an amazing deal and it would be if any of the photos were labeled. In using the photo library most of the time I have no idea what I am looking at. So, there is random Egyptian temples and random locations in Greece… what bearing does it have for the Visual Bible Teacher? None!
If you want a good set of Bible locations pictures here are the sources listed with price:
Padfield – This is a personal collection of photographs by the pastor of the Church of Christ in Zion. Though the labeling is not perfect, he puts a bunch of great pictures out there for you to use.
Glo – (Update Glo desktop has become unusable, do not buy the desktop version, it needs interaction with a server, that is no longer available) From the old Bible software if you buy an old desktop copy and install it. There are around 3,000 great pictures about 25% of them are unique to logos and 75% of them are from Todd Bolen’s Bibleplaces that I will discuss next. This software should only cost you $30, but extracting the pictures is somewhat difficult. You have to copy and past the screen using windows snipping tool.
Accordance Photo Guide – The photo guide sets from accordance are wonderful. Ton of explanatory data fantastic photos. If you get them on sale all six sets can run you under $100.
Bible Places – Somewhat pricey and so many pictures that often time have little bearing to scripture, sometimes it is easy to get lost in a sea of irrelevant pictures. I would definitely recommend the Photo Guide above, it is less expensive, has great pictures and has more pictures from important places in Iraq and Iran, than Bible Places has.
The Barry Beitzel Photo Library from Logos – This one as I mentioned above is not worth the $29.99 price tag because the notes and organization are so bad that it almost renders the whole thing unusable.
There you have it the best places to get great Bible location pics.
Kingstone’s 101 Questions about the Bible and Christianity vol 1 I have to applaud for choosing to put this sort of content in comic fashion.
The comic answers five questions:
Where did Cain get his wife?
What does the Bible say about dinosaurs?
Where was Jesus for the three days between his crucifixion and the resurrection?
What happens to people right after death?
Does the Bible mention aliens or UFOs?
The questions are answered by addressing different views, but in general from a conservative literal reading of the scripture. So the dinosaurs is a young earth creation point of view.
The challenge of using comics in visual teaching is that the conversation bubbles sometimes detract from what you are teaching. In general buying copies of this and giving it to youth, might be the best way to teach.
This comic can be found in Vyrso, which will load it into the logos software here.
When looking for good Bible art there are many sources. Both Logos and Accordance Bible Software has art sets that are either embedded in their base packages or are for sale.
The reviewed set here is Accordance Bible Art which can be found at the attached link. This set includes around 340 pictures. I say around because they are in order of Bible reference so many images show up multiple times for multiple passages.
Two thirds of this set is made up of Gustave Dore’s biblical engravings which are very common. The set does not include Dore’s Deuterocanonical etchings for Maccabees and Tobit etc. The Dore drawings are good size and resolution.
The other third is a mixed bag of classical artists and one modern artist named David Lang. All of these other artists pictures are dark tinted, the comparative pictures that are found in Logos Fine Art collection are better colored. The one redeeming feature of these pictures is there maybe fifteen rare paintings here that I have not found anywhere else.
To make a long story short, it is a good source for Dore’s paintings, though Glo is better. Both Accordance and Glo are hard to extract the paintings from for use in Presentation.
The Kingstone Bible is an amazing piece of Christian art for the visual teacher, because it contains so many pieces of scripture that for otherwise there are no pictures.
For instance, who else fully illustrates Nahum and Habakkuk, not many, but you find it in the Kingstone Bible. The Kingstone Bible is actually more complete in this sense than the “Action Bible” it’s chief competitor.
Holman in the last couple of years has put out a plethora of visual resources. One of the more widely distributed is the “Holman Book of Biblical Maps, Charts and Reconstructions’
My favorite part of this book is the 22 Reconstruction drawings that are included. There are also 22 Maps and close to the same amount of charts.
The highlights for me were the reconstruction drawing of New Testament Jericho and Caesarea Maritima and the charts that show how money is distributed between the evangelized and non-evangelized world.
There are two important notes about this 1) These are not my favorite maps 2) All the same reconstructions and some of the maps and charts are included in the Holman Quick Source Bible Atlas which in general is a better deal for the money, only downside is the picture size is worse in the Bible Atlas than in the “Holman Book of Biblical Maps, Charts and Reconstructions”.
When visual teaching on a budget, finding a good source of pictures that are inexpensive is important, I think the most amazing source I have found in that sense is “Biblica – The Bible Atlas” written by Barry Beitzel.
I will write more about Professor Beitzel in a later post. Biblica is a massive print book with beautiful pages, and the content flows wonderfully through history. You may be thinking… a book? But wait… some versions of the book came with CD-Roms that contained all 870 images used in the book in jpeg format. Sure there were no useful labels on them, but there is everything in this images set. Fantastic maps, even of obscure Bible subjects like “The Syro-Ephraimitic War”
Amazing tables, artifact pictures, location pictures and then there is the art used… wow, there is a depth and variety of art used in this book that I have not found in any other book. For instance the below picture is “Merodach Baladan king of Babylon that would be defeated by Sargon by E Wallcousins” if memory serves this King of Babylon long before Nebuchadnezzar, visited Hezekiah, trying to drum up an alliance against the massive Assyrian Empire.
Okay so this is the most important thing to know. I do not think all editions had the CD-ROM, so if you buy it used (which I think it is out of print) make sure you buy a copy with a CD-ROM. Here is a link to the amazon page for the book.