Logos Bible Software

3 Logos Shortcuts You Can Use Right Away

Man on computer for a post about using the Go Box labels in Logos

Bible study isn’t supposed to be fast. It takes time to mine biblical riches. But it’s the digging that should take time, not the shovel selection process. That’s why I use keyboard shortcuts, so I can call up tools fast and put them to use. Keyboard shortcuts are almost always faster than using the mouse.

Here are three Logos shortcuts you can start using in your study right away.

1. Shortcut icons

If there are particular books, guides, or tools that you use frequently, you can make a clickable shortcut to them by dragging the title from the tab to the menu bar. To open a resource, click the icon—or drag it to where you want it to open:

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2. Keyboard shortcuts

I almost talked about Quickstart Layouts—and layouts in general. They are quick ways to get what you need out of Logos. But time-saving articles can only have three points, so I had to choose something I think fewer Logos users know about and use: keyboard shortcuts.

I’m a keyboard shortcut devotee. A student of the art. I try to find a keyboard shortcut for any and every computer task I find myself performing repetitively (on my Mac, in this case): taking screenshots (⌥⇧4) and screencasts (⌥⇧5), switching apps (⌥⇥), calling up my password manager (⌘/). If my mouse batteries die, I can still do most of what I need to do.

All the standard shortcuts work in the appropriate places in Logos—for both Mac and Windows:

  • Copy (⌘C, Ctrl+C)
  • Paste (⌘V, Ctrl+V)
  • Close window (⌘W, Ctrl+W)

But there are three others that I hope Logos users know and use—and yet I fear many don’t:

  • Open a book without touching your mouse. Just bring up the Library window with ⌘L (Mac) or Ctrl+L (Win), type your book name, hit the down arrow (↓) until you reach your book in the list, and hit enter.
  • Find a biblical reference within your resource. ⌘G (Mac) or Ctrl+G (Win) puts your cursor into the reference box so you can type whatever Scripture reference you need without having to click anywhere. This is most valuable, of course, in Bibles and commentaries.
  • Get to the command bar fast. ⌘⌥L (Mac) or Alt+D (Win) places the cursor in the command bar. There is so much you can do in the command bar, and I’ll show you some of the most valuable things in the next point…

(There are full lists of keyboard shortcuts for both Windows and Mac.)

3. Command bar

The command bar is my new favorite feature in Logos, because it enables me to control the app from my keyboard. To my shame, I had been a Logos user for years before I sat down and figured it out.

One little example of its power is that it can close all my tabs: just type “close all” and hit enter.

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There’s much more it can do, but the thing I find myself doing most frequently with it is searching the Bible. Just type whatever you want to search for (“the love of Christ” or “Jesus NEAR Peter” or “dropsy”) and hit Ctrl+Enter to search your top Bibles for your search term(s). The other day I was curious to see whether “dropsy” is used in any Bible translations beyond the KJV, so I searched for it (I use the mouse in the gif only for illustrative purposes; in real life I hit Ctrl+Enter):

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Since searching for Bible verses through my top Bibles is the number one most frequent thing I do in Logos, it’s advantageous to learn the keyboard shortcuts that make it happen quickly.

Bible study isn’t a rush job—not if you want to get something meaningful out of it. But when you use shortcuts like those outlined here, you’ll spend less time clicking and scrolling and more time reading and pondering.

mark ward
Mark L. Ward, Jr. received his PhD from Bob Jones University in 2012; he now serves the church as a Logos Pro. He is the author of multiple high school Bible textbooks, including Biblical Worldview: Creation, Fall, Redemption.

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Written by
Mark Ward

Mark Ward (PhD, Bob Jones University) is the editor of Bible Study Magazine and author of its back-page column, “Word Nerd: Language and the Bible.” He is the author of several books and textbooks including Biblical Worldview: Creation, Fall, Redemption (BJU Press, 2016), Basics for a Biblical Worldview (BJU Press, 2021), and Authorized: The Use and Misuse of the King James Bible (Lexham Press, 2018), which became a Faithlife infotainment documentary. He is also the host of the Bible Study Magazine Podcast and is an active (read: obsessive) YouTuber.

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Written by Mark Ward