Not too long ago, we gave a survey of a few great iPhone apps for the worship leader. We wanted to provide a brief review of another iPhone/iPod app that is useful for anyone. It’s free, and is called the Olive Tree Bible Reader
Price: Free. Potential: Unlimited.
“Bible Reader” is a bit of an understatement for this powerful app. Once you download the Olive Tree app, you are immediately equipped with a handheld high-tech theological research study. No joke. This thing has a lot of power, and even more potential if you choose to invest in additional titles.
As a Bible Reader
For a standard Bible Reader, the Olive Tree app is one of the best there is. Here’s why.
- Full-screen reading capabilities. Rather than clutter the screen with a menu bar or scrolling options, the screen opens up with plenty of space for reading the text. You can scroll with sideswipe or downward flick, whatever you prefer.
- Referencing. It is easy to highlight verses and add personal notes. Simply tap the verse number, and a menu comes up. We also like the fact that verses with notes attached will indicate the note with a little icon. This makes it easy to find out which verses have your notes attached.
- Split-screen reading. For a comparative reading or browsing multiple texts simultaneously, the split-screen reading works quite well.
- Daily Bible reading plans. The Olive Tree Bible reader comes preloaded with three Bible reading plans, a chronological plan, a beginning to end plan, and the popular M’Cheyne reading plan. These are very helpful for tracking and guiding your reading the Bible in one year. The only downside is that you are not able to change the dates or details of the schedule, but only check off the assignments that you have read.
As a Theological Resource Center
Like we said, it’s more than a Bible reader. Olive Tree is a provider of digital Bible Study resources. They have an expansive collection of such resources for the Olive Tree app. These will cost you some money, so before you blow your book budget on Olive Tree resources, make sure that this is the platform you want to use for your Bible study.
I just browsed through the Bible selection, and quickly counted over seventy Bibles available for purchase. English versions, study Bible versions, original language versions, and other language versions are all offered through the Olive Tree store.
Here is an idea of the cost of some of the popular Bible translations:
ESV Study Bible: $37.99
The Message: $9.99
GNT/BHS (Original Languages): $46.99
It’s not all Bibles. There are books, too. A lot of them. In fact, Olive Tree has over five hundred resources available for download. Many resources are free (over 100). If you want, you can easily download the ASV, Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, and maybe Calvin’s Institutes for your perusal. Sermons, inspirational books, Christian living books, reading plans, maps, commentaries, dictionaries, and even some children’s resources are all included in the free download section.
For a free app, this is one of the best that you can get. For its add-ons and additional resources, it is unbeatable. If you’re looking for a simple Bible reader, or a full-fledged theological library or an iPhone Bible Research Center, we think you’ve found the best app there is.