The Commentary Wholly Biblical: An Exposition in the Very Words of Scripture (KJV) aka "The Bible Self Explained..."

bcansler

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In college many years ago, I stumbled across "The Bible Self Explained: A Commentary Wholly Biblical: An Exposition in the Very Words of Scripture" by Moody Press, Chicago IL (2,348 pages, 1957) which I have since learned, appears to be a compilation of three older volumes of a work titled "The Commentary Wholly Biblical: An Exposition in the Very Words of Scripture by Samuel Bagster and Sons, London (1856). (Three volumes: Genises to Job, Psalms to Malachi and Matthew to Revelation.)

Bible Self Explained: https://www.google.com/books/edition/The_Bible_Self_explained/koFoYgEACAAJ?hl=en
Commentary Wholly Biblical: https://archive.org/details/commentarywholly01lond/page/n9/mode/2up

Both of these works are now in the public domain. I contacted Moody Press and they no longer have the masters or files of any kind for their compilation, to their knowledge.

I'm curious if any of these works are known / available to / within SwordSearcher. If not, would it be of interest to have these works as modules? There are some very interesting tables and timelines in the early pages.

There are features within SwordSearcher which potentially make this 1856 / 1957 collection somewhat redundant perhaps, but I think this work is a classic and one which could be interesting as a "commentary" - especially since it only uses other KJV verses as the "commentary".

Another way to look at it is this collection is an early paper approach / method of study which appears to be in the same vein as SwordSearcher at a somewhat foundational level (before computers existed).
 

Brandon Staggs

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I'm curious if any of these works are known / available to / within SwordSearcher.
They are not available in the library, and I don't think I have seen anyone make a module for them. The content looks interesting enough to be a module for sure, but I don't have any suitable sources from which to work to make them.
 

marty

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1,996
In college many years ago, I stumbled across "The Bible Self Explained: A Commentary Wholly Biblical: An Exposition in the Very Words of Scripture" by Moody Press, Chicago IL (2,348 pages, 1957) which I have since learned, appears to be a compilation of three older volumes of a work titled "The Commentary Wholly Biblical: An Exposition in the Very Words of Scripture by Samuel Bagster and Sons, London (1856). (Three volumes: Genesis to Job, Psalms to Malachi and Matthew to Revelation.)

Bible Self Explained: https://www.google.com/books/edition/The_Bible_Self_explained/koFoYgEACAAJ?hl=en
Commentary Wholly Biblical: https://archive.org/details/commentarywholly01lond/page/n9/mode/2up
Thank you for pointing out this book! I hadn't heard of it before and just downloaded the pdf from archive.org so I can use it. Love it! I hope it becomes a SwordSearcher module.
 

bcansler

Member
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8
They are not available in the library, and I don't think I have seen anyone make a module for them. The content looks interesting enough to be a module for sure, but I don't have any suitable sources from which to work to make them.
Understood and agreed. It bears further thought, but is interesting to consider.
 

bcansler

Member
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8
Thank you for pointing out this book! I hadn't heard of it before and just downloaded the pdf from archive.org so I can use it. Love it! I hope it becomes a SwordSearcher module.
You're welcome, Marty, I'm glad you like it! I remember the first time I saw the book. It was a bit overwhelming at first as it is a huge book on the shelf, but once I carefully got it down onto a library desk and opened it up, I realized what it was and found it fascinating. People (as I'm sure it likely had to be more than one person) who loved God's word, evidently spent a great deal of time and effort putting that together.

I just ordered a set of the London printing for myself this morning. When I receive them, it will be interesting to compare what is in that printing with what I saw in the Moody Press printing nearly 30 years ago. This morning, I also saw a version online of the Moody Press version priced at $299.00, so these books are a bit pricey due to their rarity. I wish Moody Press had an electronic copy we could use as the basis for a module.

The OCR text version on archive.org has errors and mis-read text in it. Perhaps, with the right OCR technology a faithful electronic rendering is possible and usable as the basis for a module. The other option would be to go through the text, creating a Cross-Reference Tabulation of sorts which could then become the basis for a module. We already have the KJV text so a cross-reference tabulation of verse references would probably get us started. It is worth considering but would take considerable time and focus to complete.

It does seem to be a natural fit for SwordSearcher though. To have a digital version of the work available in an excellent tool like SwordSearcher would certainly honor the effort of those believers in 1856 who doubtless sacrificed to assemble the massive work in those days without benefit of computers.
 

marty

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1,996
The OCR text version on archive.org has errors and mis-read text in it. Perhaps, with the right OCR technology a faithful electronic rendering is possible and usable as the basis for a module. The other option would be to go through the text, creating a Cross-Reference Tabulation of sorts which could then become the basis for a module. We already have the KJV text so a cross-reference tabulation of verse references would probably get us started. It is worth considering but would take considerable time and focus to complete.
I did download the pdf from archive.org and it has some issues, but I've started using it to make a commentary module - not an exact duplicate of the pdf, as I like to see the verses in context, so when they used a segment of a verse, I converted it to the whole verse. I've split out the bundle of references so each reference verse has its own line and is easier to read, and put some color in it, etc. I'm very slow, and it will take the rest of my life to get it all done, but what a blessing it will be! I've wanted a commentary like this for a long time. The first chapter of Genesis is amazing!
 

wsbones

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I did download the pdf from archive.org and it has some issues, but I've started using it to make a commentary module - not an exact duplicate of the pdf, as I like to see the verses in context, so when they used a segment of a verse, I converted it to the whole verse. I've split out the bundle of references so each reference verse has its own line and is easier to read, and put some color in it, etc. I'm very slow, and it will take the rest of my life to get it all done, but what a blessing it will be! I've wanted a commentary like this for a long time. The first chapter of Genesis is amazing!
The pdf only goes through Job, right? It would be handy module and useful like TSK.

I downloaded the txt file and pasted a few portions into the scan text tool. It was able to convert a lot of the Roman numerals correctly. However matching them to the verses with a program would be difficult.
 

marty

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The pdf only goes through Job, right? It would be handy module and useful like TSK.

I downloaded the txt file and pasted a few portions into the scan text tool. It was able to convert a lot of the Roman numerals correctly. However matching them to the verses with a program would be difficult.
Ah, I didn't realize that it only went through Job. It will take me a long time to get through Job, though, and maybe a complete document will surface by then. It will be great getting to Job!
 

wsbones

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I did Gen 1 by copying the verse comments one at a time into the scan tool. Then using the "load verses into verse list" button, I copied the verse list references into a user commentary for each verse. I had to make a couple corrections, but the scan tool was pretty accurate capturing the references in the text. The OCR had a little trouble with the G in Genesis references.

The commentary is like TSK.

I am not sure how much I will do. I wanted to see how hard it would be and how long it would take. Gen 1 took about 20 minutes.
 

Johnny NL

Well-Known Member
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926
I did Gen 1 by copying the verse comments one at a time into the scan tool. Then using the "load verses into verse list" button, I copied the verse list references into a user commentary for each verse. I had to make a couple corrections, but the scan tool was pretty accurate capturing the references in the text. The OCR had a little trouble with the G in Genesis references.

The commentary is like TSK.

I am not sure how much I will do. I wanted to see how hard it would be and how long it would take. Gen 1 took about 20 minutes.
Regarding the work involved, is it a possibility to see this as a SS9 module in the future?
 

marty

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1,996
I did Gen 1 by copying the verse comments one at a time into the scan tool. Then using the "load verses into verse list" button, I copied the verse list references into a user commentary for each verse. I had to make a couple corrections, but the scan tool was pretty accurate capturing the references in the text. The OCR had a little trouble with the G in Genesis references.

The commentary is like TSK.

I am not sure how much I will do. I wanted to see how hard it would be and how long it would take. Gen 1 took about 20 minutes.
I started Gen 1 by copying just the verse comments from the pdf to my commentary for each verse, then I fixed the OCR typos for the references and used Ctrl+t to fill in the text. Then I realized that in the pdf, some of the Gen verses had superscript numbered phrases or words, so I went back and entered the Gen verses and put in the superscripts. I put each of the Gen verses at the top of the entry and made them blue so they stand out as the primary verse. I have Gen 1 & 2 done, and it would have been faster if I didn't stop to read and ponder each of them. Only 873 pages left to do :) .

I tend to get distracted and overwhelmed by TSK - like I'm looking for one thing and 20 pop up - so I don't use it like I should. Maybe after I work on this for a while, I'll be able to sort through TSK better.
 

marty

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I searched for this book in digital form and found it at ForgottenBooks.org. What I found said that they 'print on demand' - that is, they have digital copies that they will print and bind and send from the UK when you order it, so I asked them if they had a digital copy for sale. Their response is below. When I looked at the previews, I saw that one is Matthew through Revelation and one is Psalms through Malachi. The pdfs cost $9.50. When put with the Genesis through Job pdf from archive.org, that's the whole Bible. It is suggested that you read the terms and conditions before you purchase.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The digital edition of 9780243282227 can be found here: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/books/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_10791696
It can be previewed for free, by continuing as a Guest here: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/readbook/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_10791696

We also hold another volume here: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/books/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_11371145
which you can preview for free by continuing as a Guest here: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/readbook/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_11371145

Since the books are quite large, it may take a while for the previews to load.

The books are available for purchase in digital format as a PDF in the links we shared.

Kind regards,
- The Forgotten Books team
 
Last edited:

wsbones

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3,071
I searched for this book in digital form and found it at ForgottenBooks.org. What I found said that they 'print on demand' - that is, they have digital copies that they will print and bind and send from the UK when you order it, so I asked them if they had a digital copy for sale. Their response is below. When I looked at the previews, I saw that one is Matthew through Revelation and one is Psalms through Malachi. The pdfs cost $9.50. When put with the Genesis through Job pdf from archive.org, that's the whole Bible. It is suggested that you read the terms and conditions before you purchase.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The digital edition of 9780243282227 can be found here: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/books/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_10791696
It can be previewed for free, by continuing as a Guest here: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/readbook/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_10791696

We also hold another volume here: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/books/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_11371145
which you can preview for free by continuing as a Guest here: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/readbook/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_11371145

Since the books are quite large, it may take a while for the previews to load.

The books are available for purchase in digital format as a PDF in the links we shared.

Kind regards,
- The Forgotten Books team
I downloaded the forgottenbooks pdf sample containing Mat-Rev. It's cleaner looking than the one on archive.org. It has a white background and the pages seem better formatted and straightened. It is searchable so there is text behind the scenes (as there is in the archive.org copies).

It is intentionally missing some pages and replaced with advertising so it's not useful as a free version. Also they don't have the Ps-Mal version listed on the site.
 

marty

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I downloaded the forgottenbooks pdf sample containing Mat-Rev. It's cleaner looking than the one on archive.org. It has a white background and the pages seem better formatted and straightened. It is searchable so there is text behind the scenes (as there is in the archive.org copies).

It is intentionally missing some pages and replaced with advertising so it's not useful as a free version. Also they don't have the Ps-Mal version listed on the site.
I got the Ps-Mal version from them (https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/books/TheCommentaryWhollyBiblical_11371145), as well as the Mat-Rev.
I don't see any missing pages or advertising in the purchased versions, and they seem to be the same as the free version from archive.org, except for the white background and cleaner looking copy. Had I been thinking, I would have checked with archive.org to see if they had all three volumes, but at the time, I thought there was just one volume and the archive version was not complete. I do have all three volumes now and they will suit my purpose just fine, so I'm happy. :)

I considered getting pdf conversion software, but I would still want to go through each of the references (which is, after all, my end goal), so that seems like it would just add a step.
 

Eric

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As mentioned by Brandon here (https://forums.swordsearcher.com/threads/can-i-put-a-pdf-into-a-user-book.3597/), I found that opening a PDF in Microsoft Word (you have to allow it to convert online) and then saving as .htm (not with filtering) worked pretty well to get PDF contents into a user book. Of course, there is clean-up to be done, but it's easier than any other option I found. And you can immediately see if SwordSearcher recognizes the references. Just FYI.
 

bcansler

Member
Messages
8
A review and comparison of the Achive.org PDF files to the original 3 volume set now recently in my possession unfortunately reveals scanning errors in the PDF versions. Pages apparently got stuck together or were skipped by the scanner. This affects not only the PDF versions but the Archive.org other file versions as well based on further review. For example, notice how the preface of the first volume appears to begin in the middle of a sentence within the Archive.org versions. This is because in scanning, the last page of the Table of Contents and the first page of the Preface were facing pages in the book which were not scanned. That is not the only time that occurred unfortunately. I have found other Preface pages missing. I haven't made it further than that in my brief review so far, but I suspect the same problem potentially affects the core text as well.

I noticed there were a number of modern reprints of the books available online in various places. If those reprint sources are using the Archive.org source as the basis for their reprint, then they are also likely missing the same pages. I'm not sure about Forgotten Books as I haven't reviewed their version yet.

I also noted that the Archive.org resolution is insufficient to clearly present the fold-out timeline contained in the original first volume. While this doesn't neccessarily impact the core textual commentary, it would have been nice to have a clear scan of the fold out.

Anyway, I thought you should be aware of these items.
 
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