The Discovery Bible (HELPS project) began in 1976 when Drs. Gleason Archer (consulting editor) and Gary Hill (general editor) teamed up in a life-long partnership to produce biblical resources.
Drs. G. Archer and G. Hill co-authored the best seller study Bible, The Discovery Bible New Testament (1987, Moody Publishers, Chicago), and its OT (Hebrew) component.
[The Discovery Bible applies the "HELPS grid" to an unaltered NASB and KJV and is planned for other translations.]
Next they produced an expansive OT and NT grammar (approximately 2,000 pages); the HELPS devotional-lexicon (over 5,500 pages – OT, NT); HELPS Bible Encyclopedia; and HELPS Commentary series.
These materials were "refined in the fire" of daily ministry and world missions. Gary Hill also planted and pastored three local churches in the Chicago area and has conducted seminars in hundreds of cities, in a dozen countries, teaching "original-language institutes" for accelerated Bible reading. During this time Dr. Archer was a professor at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (Trinity International University, Deerfield, Illinois).
Dr. Gleason Archer
(May 22, 1916 - April 27, 2004)
- Consulting Editor
Dr. Archer (Ph.D, Harvard, comparative linguistics) was routinely summa cum laude in his pre and post doctoral studies – becoming competent in 30 languages (an asset greatly beneficial to this project). Most importantly, he showed an unwavering commitment to Christ as Lord and Savior and the full authority (inerrancy) of Scripture. Dr. Archer's love for Scripture is perhaps best remembered by his Bible reading schedule – done daily in 18 different languages on a rotating basis!
Dr. Archer's publishing career was likewise extensive. The titles of his published books, monographs, and articles span eight pages. His books include: Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties (emanating from his regular column in Billy Graham's Decision Magazine), Survey of OT Introduction (Moody Press, translated into many languages), Theological Wordbook of the OT (Moody Press), etc.
Dr. Archer served as a chief translator of the New American Standard Bible, a full-term translator of the New International Version, and contributed OT sections to The Berkeley Version.
- Data manager, chief inputter
Jeanne DeYoung has faithfully served on the HELPS/Discovery Bible project since 1989 (23 years full-time), seeing it through its many stages as chief data-manager and inputter.
Her contributions have been invaluable – so the best way to describe this untiring worker and faithful friend is: simply indispensable.
Dr. Ulrik Sandborg-Petersen
- Digital architect, designer, and developer
The Discovery Bible interactive NT is powered by Emdros, an amazingly practical and powerful engine to retrieve and display text. Emdros effortlessly brings over 200,000 points of meaningful interactivity via the "4 windows" of The Discovery Bible program.
This digital project would not have happened apart from Ulrik's computational wizardy and untiring commitment to the Great Commission (Mt 28:19-20). The danger is hardly saying too much about his skills and character, but rather too little.
Please see emergence.dk for information about the benefits Emdros can have for your ministry or enterprise.
Dr. Gary Hill
- Teaching editor-in-chief
Gary Hill, cum laude (B.S.) in education from Chicago State University, pursued graduate theological studies at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (TEDS/TIU 1972-73).
In 1990 he was awarded an honorary doctoral degree (Litt.D.) in recognition of his work in biblical Hebrew and Greek embodied in the best-selling study Bible, The Discovery Bible New Testament, (Moody Publishers, 1987; consulting editor, Dr. Gleason L. Archer).
- Organizing editor
Joan Hill works full-time with HELPS Ministries, Inc. doing editorial work. She pursued theological studies at Wheaton College (Wheaton, IL) and worked for 25 years as an RN.
Bringing a fruitful background in missions and ministry, her desire is to share practical Bible teaching on relevant issues, especially to women.
Many thanks also go to: Lanny and Diane Carr, Jamie DeYoung, Laura DeYoung, Trisha Fesler, John Isett (biblos.com), Scott Musser, Pastor Rich Valkanet, Tom Volpert, and Deena Weber. The journey with these dear friends has been both pleasant and productive.
THE REST OF THE STORY . . .
The HELPS color-encodings open ancient (original) meanings often obscured or lost in translation – robust meanings accessed via the special markings embedded in the biblical text. Each corresponds to their original language counterparts – grammatical precisions that are "transparent" (viewable) in translation without memorizing one Hebrew or Greek word. The HELPS "transparency markers" spur vitality and clarity, "pulling the reader in" for engrossing Bible reading.
The HELPS Bible reading-system (overlaid on the NASB and KJV) is a "color-highlighting grid" to see original insights (without altering the wording of the translation). With the color-encodings, readers pick up on "beyond-translation insights" as they read along.
The Discovery Bible opens "three windows" (literary features) of the original text: verb-tense nuancing; colorful word-meanings (vocabulary choices); and emphasis (often conveyed by unusual word order). These grammatical features of the sacred text are relayed by the HELPS Bible-reading system (a translation-enhancement overlaid in The Discovery Bible - NASB, KJV).
In sum, HELPS for Discovery Bible-reading makes original-language discoveries possible without altering or expanding the base translation (NASB or KJV). Via the special "mark-ups" (color-encodings), any reader can pick up "beyond-translation insights." Even without any background in the biblical languages, readers will see ancient meanings through "first-century eyes."
The grammatical "accent marks" of the original text jump off the page simply by reflectively reading along with the HELPS color-encodings. These "transparent meaning-markers" of the sacred originals reflect the literary devices used by the Scripture writers to accentuate and elucidate meanings. They act as "three windows" to release grammatical light of the original text to show: "action-pictures"; original word meanings; and accenting (emphasis) expressed by the Scripture writers.
HELPS (an acronym) stands for five key "tiers" of interactive learning:
∙Hermeneutics (principles of Bible interpretation)
∙Exegesis (explanation or interpretation of the text)
∙Select quotations (drawn from ancient and modern authors from over 1,000 reference volumes).
H.E.L.P.S. Ministries Inc. is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) tax exempt corporation dedicated to international Bible literacy and leadership training. The legal acronym is a/k/a the Hill Emphatic Language Pointer System.