The first issue of the Founders Journal was published in the Spring of 1990. A second issue was published later that year and, after measuring the interest, the decision was made to continue publishing the journal on a quarterly basis thereafter. I agreed to serve as the editor of this new venture with Tom Nettles, Bill Ascol, Fred Malone and Ernest Reisinger serving as an editorial board.
Since that time the Founders Journal has been distributed throughout the world. We have heard from readers who reside in the most restricted Muslim nations in the world as well as in some of the remotest parts of the earth. It has been gratifying to see how the Lord has used the reach of these printed pages.
With the development of the Internet and the world wide web, Founders made the conscious decision to put all of the journal articles online for free in order to extend our usefulness more efficiently and widely. Though that decision made was not economically advisable (we were told), it fit perfectly with our vision to work for the recovery of the gospel and biblical reformation of local churches. Though it may be hard for some younger Southern Baptists to fathom, it was not that long ago that some pastors were actually terminated because they were discovered to have subscribed to the Founders Journal. More than a few pastors and church leaders read it discreetly.
The digital revolution and explosion of Internet accessibility eliminated many of those concerns and also facilitated the rapid and comparatively inexpensive spread of articles and written resources around the world. While it is undoubtedly true that some readers still do not have access to the Internet, and others who do still prefer the printed page to the pixilated one, the undeniable fact is that over the last several years most of our readers access the Founders Journal online rather than via their mailboxes.
For this reason, and in order to be faithful stewards of the resources entrusted to us for the work of reformation, this will be the last printed issue of the journal. We will still publish it quarterly, but only in a digital format. All of the articles will continue to be available on the Founders website, and we will also make each issue available for tablets and electronic readers.
I know that this will disappoint some of our loyal print readers and that is the last thing that we would ever want to do. Every reader is deeply appreciated. But in order for us to continue pursuing the purpose of Founders Ministries as effectively as we can, it is a decision whose time has come. Of course, I hope that you will continue to read the journal as it continues to be published online each quarter. And help us spread the word about its availability.
Check our website (www.founders.org) or sign up for our e-newsletter from the site in order to stay informed not only about upcoming issues but also about other developments in the continuing work of reformation. Thank you for your prayers and ongoing support. We have many reasons to be encouraged as well as much work that still needs to be done.