[sword-devel] Cool idea: Commercial Linux /Windows Bible program based on Sword

allen goforth sword-devel@crosswire.org
Thu, 1 Feb 2001 19:02:56 -0500


"We grow arid not for lack of wonders by for lack of wonder."
                --G. K. Chesterton
----- Original Message -----
From: "Walter Kenaston" <kenaston@digital.net>
To: <sword-devel@crosswire.org>
Sent: Wednesday, January 31, 2001 10:18 PM
Subject: Re: [sword-devel] Cool idea: Commercial Linux /Windows Bible
program based on Sword

> Bob Pritchett wrote:
> > <snip>
> > It could be argued that the Bible should be free to everyone everywhere,
> > that if there isn't money to translate it into a small language in Asia
> > churches and individuals should contribute. I agree, and this is the
case to
> > an extent. But, tithing and good intentions aside, it's often easier for
> > Bible translation community as a whole to get $10-20 from you for every
> > of the Bible you personally desire, and send it off to the many projects
> > around the world that they participate in, than to give the Bibles to
> > for free and hope you'll remember to send a gift. :-)
> >
> [On this and other things read recently:]
> I would argue many people throughout history
> have given not only their time and money into
> bringing us the Bible texts but some have devoted
> their lives, maybe even given their lives.  Some
> of these people were taken care of by patrons,
> other provided for themselves while they went
> about God's work, perhaps others a mix.
> I do not know the financial details of the early
> Bibles, but safe to say only the rich could afford
> them because making one was so costly: hiring a
> scribe, printing and binding a book, whatever.
> But today, software is just a stream of electrons
> and there is no reason to charge for it, except in
> charging for the media such as a CD-ROM, and
> mailing, and the like.
> But what's going on today is for-profit corporations
> getting the bucks they can by selling the best
> software.
> To charge for access to software Bibles is a
> change from charging what it cost to produce
> the actual thing in hand - a printed book - to
> charging for the effort behind it.  How can you
> charge for something that certainly thousands
> did for no charge to further the Kingdom of God?
> I will heartily acknowledge that people have to
> put food on the table, but I think charging for
> Bible software is less like those of old who
> brought us our Bible texts as their service to God,
> and more like the corporation out to make
> money.  Yes, you can say the money gets
> funneled back into God's work; but it is still
> the operation of a corporation (non-profit as
> it is) than of a body of believers.  It is merely
> not showing a profit, rather than depending on
> the gifts of the people and God for doing the
> work. (And who will be honored by God
> for the good work?  The Corporation??)  I
> cannot see charging Peter for what should
> be a free Bible, just so Paul can have one;
> Peter should be made aware of Paul's lack
> and then let it be an issue between God and
> Peter. (This brings concern over God's will
> to the forefront in "Peter's" life, and personal
> accountability, rather than buying an item and
> good feelings with the same purchase, or a
> tax-deductible "gift.")
> MAYBE, one could make an argument for
> charging for the software (I can't), but the
> data, the Bible texts and related information,
> certainly should be free as a work to God.
> Walter