Using the ESV API with Alfred App on macOS

July 7, 2018 - By

Recently twitter-friend Chris Bowler was explaining some of his journalling and digital bible study process (which mirrors mine quite a bit); and touched on using the ESV bible translations Application Programming Interface (API) to quickly grab the scriptures. A subsequent post elaborates a bit more on how to make use of this technology. When a conversation gets to the API point a lot of people either lose interest or get left behind, as it is a bit abstract or too unwieldy for most non-nerds on the planet. I thought a demonstration of Alfred App would make it slightly more approachable for some.

Simple Scenario

Let’s say you’re at the computer at you need that perfect verse or passage – maybe it’s memory work, encouraging a friend, bible study. How do you get that verse? I think we’ve all gone to a search engine and copy/pasted from Bible Gateway; but that’s really a chore. With a simple tool you can stay in the app you’re working in, make a simple command and have the verse automatically appear. It’s a simple process to learn, and not that hard to set up (if you have trouble or questions contact me).



The original post by Chris Bowler:

Please understand the Crossway publisher’s terms and conditions before using this for publishing or public-use content:

Alfred App: (premium add-on needed, Mac only but I would love to know if there’s a similarly easy-to-use Linux or Windows option)

Alfred App plugin using Crossway’s v3 ESV API: – I customized mine by right-clicking and viewing in Finder, then opening in my code editor

Alfred App plugin using Crossway’s V2 ESV API – I also edited this one a lot, highlighting the nodes in Alfred then doing copy/paste keyboard shortcuts and modifying for HTML output

Sublime Text: – the simple and customizable code editor I was using; notably to get multiple cursors

Ergonomics are important! They keyboard customizations and text expansion will save a lot of physical strain over the years.

aText Text expander: – another paid-app, though for these simple expansions I could have used Snippets in Alfred.

Keyboardio customizable keyboard: (there are more traditional keyboards that one can customize, look for something powered by QMK for example).

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This post was written by ArleyM