Phrasing: My Favorite Way to Trace an Argument

The best part about knowing the biblical languages is tracing the argument.

The main tool we use for this at Bethlehem College & Seminary is Biblearc.


Biblearc initially focused exclusively on tracing the argument by a method called arcing. It is a method that John Piper and Tom Steller developed after learning it from Dan Fuller.

Last year Biblearc added bracketing.

And this year it added phrasing. Phrasing is my favorite method for tracing the argument because it’s so intuitive and clear.

Phrasing goes by many names:

  • block diagramming
  • causal layout
  • grammatical diagramming
  • phrase diagramming
  • propositional displays
  • propositional outlines
  • sentence flow
  • text hierarchy
  • thought-flow diagramming

Phrasing is a flexible and easy-to-use Bible study tool that allows you to visually trace a passage’s argument: simply indent to subordinate. The Biblearc phrasing feature has all sorts of mark-up features from arrows to relationship comments to Dot Notes.

My colleagues Jason DeRouchie and Brian Tabb teamed up with Andy Hubert to show how it works in these five videos:

1. Introduction to Biblearc’s Phrasing Module

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