Your Bible study is about to become so much more in-depth AND so much more efficient. By using the resource guide to its full-effect, you will have a wealth of information seconds away while you read God’s Word. In this post, we’ll first go over why using the resource guide is a great idea. Then, we’ll show you ins-and-outs of using it. Additionally, there are a few settings you can tweak to make the experience your own.

Why Use the Resource Guide?

By now, you’ve most likely opened the app and noticed the Study Center. In case you haven’t, here’s a screenshot.

how to open the study center in the olive tree bible app

Tapping on this green bar will open the Study Center. Then, once inside, you will have access to four tabs: Resource Guide, Parallel, Notes, and Lookup.

Each tab has its own important function. We determined which actions are most important to Bible study, making sure they were available to you at all times while reading God’s Word.

The Resource Guide’s primary purpose is to make all the applicable study content you own accessible in one place. Applicable is the key word here. You could have a gigantic physical library 5 feet from your desk. But how quickly could you find every piece of relevant information to John 1 in each of those books?

With the Resource Guide, the answer is a few seconds. Also, we’ve parsed out all the relevant information by type, making your job even easier. Before we go much further, let’s open the Resource Guide. It’s definitely easier to show how it works than to explain it.

Opening the Resource Guide

As we mentioned above, the first step is to open the Study Center. Then, make sure you have the Resource Guide tab selected.

opening the resource guide in the olive tree bible app

Now, you can see the different sections of the Resource Guide. In the example above, the visible categories are “Related Verses” and “Bibles”. The numbers inside a green oval next to each resource show the number of verses, notes, or articles related to the main window content.

Next, let’s talk through each section.

Related Verses

The first section, related verses, shows you content you often find in the margins of print Bibles. Check out the image below. Do you see the verse references in the middle margin?

showing related verses in a print bible

The Olive Tree Bible App doesn’t show these references in the Bible text itself. Instead, we make them available in the Related Verses section of the Resource Guide. You can choose which translation you would like to use to view these references.

Below, we chose the NIV. Related verses are organized by the verse they correspond with in the main window. Then, tapping on a related verse will open a small pop-up window for quick reference.

related verses working in the resource guide

If you would prefer to open the related verse in a larger window, tap the icon in the top-right corner of the pop-up.

Bibles

Next, you’ll find the Bibles section of the Resource Guide. Selecting a Bible translation will allow you to read two texts side-by-side. However, this is also the primary purpose of the Parallel tab. But we felt it was important to also make your Bible translations easily accessible in this space as well.

two bible translations in the olive tree bible app

See the lock in the bottom-left corner? Tapping will unlock the link feature. If the link feature is unlocked, you can scroll in the Resource Guide, leaving the content related to the main window. Then, if you scroll in the main window, the Resource Guide will not follow along.

You can also scroll in the Resource Guide when the link feature is locked. However, if you then scroll in the main window, the Resource Guide will sync up to the related content once more.

Commentaries

Next is the commentary section. Also, study Bible notes are accessible here. Simply select a book you want to open. Then you will be able to choose which section of related content you want to open. This is because many commentaries and study Bibles will contain a variety of notes related to a larger passage of Scripture.

Here’s an example from the Bible Knowledge Commentary.

commentary section of the resource guide

Select where in the commentary you would like to start reading, and we’ll get you there. The window link feature will be available to you again, as well.

Outlines

Outlines are a unique way of getting a big picture look at a chapter or book of the Bible. In fact, it can be very beneficial to write your own outlines to better comprehend your Bible reading.

Many Bible study tools come with outlines. So, instead of searching through all your books to see which have or do not have outlines, check the Resource Guide. We’ll always show you outlines related to the passage you are reading.

outlines in the olive tree bible app

The example above is from the LifeConnect Study Bible by Wayne Cordeiro.

Introductions

Another popular addition to commentaries and study Bibles is an introduction section. Here, you’ll find key background information, and every introduction is a little bit different.

A great example of this is the introduction material in the ESV Study Bible.

Introductions in the resource guide

After selecting the ESV Study Bible in the Introductions section of the Resource Guide, all these options were made available. This study Bible gives introductory material not only on John, but on the Gospels as well.

Charts, Images, and Maps

If you’re a visual learner, this section is for you! We pull together all your charts, images, and maps into sections of the Resource Guide. Since these are visual resources, we won’t do too much talking about it. Just take a look!

First, here is a screenshot of a chart in our Gospel Harmonies.

opening charts in the olive tree bible app

This map is from the Archaeological Study Bible, a great resource for maps and images!

maps in the resource guide

Lastly, here is timeline from the KJV Study Bible Full Color.

timeline in the olive tree bible app

People, Topics, and Places

Looking to learn more about a specific person, place, or topic mentioned in your Bible reading? The Resource Guide pulls articles from your dictionaries and other resources, making them available under these sections.

opening people, topics, and places in the olive tree bible app

Here is an example from John 1. Next, we’ll open up “JESUS, THE CHRIST” under the People section.

articles on Jesus in the resource guide

The same feature is available to you if you select any of the Topics or Places. This is an extremely quick way to go in-depth learning about a specific aspect of your Bible reading. You will never miss an important detail.

Sermons

Reading sermons isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. But if you’ve never tried it, well, you’re missing out. We offer quite a few sets of sermons from famous preachers in our store. Spurgeon’s, Piper’s, Bonhoeffer’s, Robinson’s to name a few.

It can be difficult to remember what passages your sermon set covers. So, checking the Resource Guide for this type of content can be very helpful. Below, we opened one of John Piper’s sermons.

sermons in the resource guide

Notes and Tags

The last two sections of the Resource Guide really go hand-in-hand. If you didn’t know already, you can create your own notes and tags in the Olive Tree Bible App. If you make a note by tapping on a verse reference number in the Bible text, your note will automatically be connected to that section of Scripture. Then, the Resource Guide will know to make it visible to you.

You can also create tags, attaching the tag to notes and highlights. We will also show you these results in a way that allows you to quickly open them in the Study Center.

notes and tags in the resource guide

Now we’ve covered all the sections of the Resource Guide! Next, we’ll cover ways to make the experience unique to your preferences.

Resource Guide Settings

While we believe the Resource Guide is useful, we understand that you know best when it comes to your personal Bible study. So, we’ve added some settings that you can adjust based on your preferences.

To access the Resource Guide settings, tap the gear icon at the top of the app. Then, choose “Advanced Settings”. In this list, you will find the option “Resource Guide,” sixth from the top. After selecting it, this is what you should see.

resource guide settings

Enabling Sections

First, you can choose which sections of the Resource Guide you would like enabled. By default, they are all enabled. But if you would like to simplify, you can! Simply select the section, and you will be able to turn it off.

commentary section settings

You can also choose which resources you want to appear in each section.

Reordering Sections

Secondly, you can reorder sections and resources. The “Reorder” button is in the top-right corner of this window. Selecting it allows you to rearrange the Resource Guide sections and the order your resources display — all to your liking.

Starting Using the Resource Guide

That’s it! We hope this complete guide to the Resource Guide helped answer all your questions. If it didn’t, please email support@olivetree.com to have your questions answered.

If you haven’t already downloaded the Olive Tree Bible App, now’s the time! Install it and start using the Resource Guide today.

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