A Short History of Expository Files
In 1993 I was happy to be reunited (electronically) with an old friend, Jon Quinn. We became acquainted in the 1970's when both of us were preaching in Kansas. We moved away from Kansas, and while we continued some limited contact, distance hindered our former closeness. All of this changed when we started using computers and signed up for AOL. Not long after we established online contact we started Expository Files. The first issue was published in January of 1994. Thus with this issue we begin our 8th year of publication.
Changes come quickly in cyberspace. In '94 we distributed EF through the AOL and CompuServe religious forums, and through a few BBS networks. We monitored downloads on AOL and witnessed a surprising monthly increase in our circulation. When the world wide web opened for public use, we started getting requests from several religious/educational institutions who maintained web sites and FTP sites. By 1996 we had a website devoted to Expository Files, and many listing us as a link. Today, there are at least four EF websites (two offering the full monthly issue in HTML). We witness hits and responses from all over the world.
I looked back at the editorial I wrote for the first issue and I can honestly say our intent has not changed. The format, methods of distribution and circulation has changed. We offer topical articles along with four expository articles. We have both readers and writers we didn't have in 1994. But the intent of the editors is the same. As stated in '94 - "Our intent is to upload articles with emphasis on the exposition of Scripture … We want to offer articles which are simple, true to the Scriptures, and easy to read… Our motive is to provide Biblical teaching for on-line computer users…" All of this is current.
We are proud of our record of timely publication. We have often been tempted to delay, when various unexpected things happened. I've had four surgeries since 1994; I now have five grandchildren; I was out of town nearly a total of two months in 2000; Jon is about to start "marrying" his kids into their own families; I believe he has had at least one computer crash per year - so we've faced a variety of temptations to delay publication. Each time we have resisted, and we've been a day or so late only three or four times since '94 (sometimes due to server interruptions). Maintaining the publication schedule will continue to be important. Readers expect the magazine the first of each month. Their expectation becomes our obligation.
We appreciate the work of writers and the comments of readers. And, we are so thankful to Alan LaRue for his work maintaining an attractive and easy-to-navigate website at http://www.geocities.com/Athens/4051/. Alan not only has special proficiency in HTML, he has a very special devotion to the spread of the gospel. We commend all "to God, and to the word of His grace…," (Acts 20:32).
By Warren E. Berkley
The Front Page
From Expository Files 8.1; January 2001