The online scriptures are a very powerful tool. When you first visit the scriptures Web site, you may think it looks very simple with not much functionality. However, if you dig a bit deeper, you will find an extremely powerful tool to help you in your gospel study and research. I thought that I would share with you some interesting features that you may find useful.
One of my favorite features is the "topic search." To try this feature, click on the search link at the top of the screen and then select the "topic search" link. Type in "testimony" as the topic. Once you do so, you will find a list of related topics followed by a list of scripture references relating to the topic you are searching for. This topic search does not do a string match but actually cross-references the Topical Guide. So, you will notice a reference to Job 19:25-26, which is a great scripture on testimony but does not even use the word "testimony." This powerful feature is a great tool in your gospel study and preparation for talks and lessons.
Another powerful search feature is the "reference search." The reference search allows you to find references by typing in the book, chapter, and verse range you are looking for. The power comes in when you can combine several of these references into one search. Let me give you an example. Suppose you are preparing lesson 29, "The Purpose of Life," from Aaronic Priesthood Manual 2. From the online lesson, you can highlight scripture references and then copy and paste them into the reference search box. Then when you press the search button, you will get a listing of each reference for your study. Give it a try by copying and pasting these references into the reference search box.
Jeremiah 1:4–5, Doctrine and Covenants 93:21–23, Abraham 3:22–27, D&C 130:1, 22
The last power feature I would like to talk about is scripture marking. When you want to mark a verse, you simply hold the "Alt" or "Option" key down on your keyboard and press the left mouse button. The verse will turn red indicating that it is marked. You can mark up to 75 different verses. These marks are stored in a cookie on your local machine so they persist across sessions. You can then see all of your marked scriptures by clicking on the Search link and then selecting the "Marked References" tab. I have used this feature many times when I am comparing various verses in my lesson planning and personal study.
We are continually adding new features and languages to the online scriptures. Let me know what you think about these features by adding your comments.