For the most part, the good bible study software is made for other OS’s. There is the glimmering exception of Xiphos, which runs natively in Linux and since it uses the Sword modules from Crosswire is pretty decent for studies in English. However, while it may have the unpointed Leningrad Codex and Westcott-Hort Greek, its biblical language tools are very weak.
There is a free-as-in-beer tool however that includes the pointed Masoretic text, including the Brown-Driver-Briggs lexicon, as well as books for Greek studies, and other texts such as the apocrypha and pseudopigrapha. This great resource is Davar. The problem is that #1 It only runs in Windows, and #2 It’s closed sourced. This means that in it’s current state, due to the decision of the developer, there is little to no hope for getting this ported to Linux, nor making it compatible with Crosswire’s modules. The sadness!
There is hope to getting it to run in Linux with wine, though. Here’s how to do it:
1. Install wine on your system: yum install wine
2. Download the installer from the Davar site. Save the .exe file.
3. Open a terminal and cd to the directory where you saved the file (DO NOT LOG IN AS ROOT!)
4. Run the installer: wine32 ./davar2_setup.exe
*** At this point Davar will be installed but the fonts will likely be all messed up or in a foreign language. Let’s fix that.
5. Copy the Davar fonts: cp ~/.wine/drive_c/Davar3/fonts/* ~/.wine/drive_c/windows/fonts
*** Now we need the base windows fonts. Let’s get them! (Alternatively for 6 and 7 see Comment #1)
6. Download exe’s for the Core Fonts here under Fonts> Final
7. Install them into wine one at a time, example: wine32 ./andale32.exe /Q
(The /Q will skip the click prompt and just install the font)
*** One last step.
8. Click the the Davar3.desktop icon on your desktop and allow access. The icon will change to the Davar icon. You’re good to launch it! (Just delete the .lnk)
All the updates and add-ons can be installed just as described on the website for adding books, audio, etc. Just drop them into their respective folders in ~/.wine/drive_c/Davar3 and restart Davar.
Perhaps the Davar developers may see the value in open sourcing this useful tool so it can become even more useful, running natively on other OSs and perhaps getting more module support, thus extending it’s use. If you feel the same way, why not send them an email?