Ken Rudge, St. Austell, England
The Precious Seed Magazine was first published as an eight page, black and white pamphlet, produced under the severe restrictions of paper shortages as a result of the Second World War. The first issue was distributed free to all that wished to receive a copy in September 1945.
The committee members then were careful to explain that the magazine owed its inception to the strong conviction that there was a renewed need to draw attention to the importance of New Testament church practices and to encourage aggressive evangelism in order to produce healthy and vigorous local churches. Their intention was to aim to do this from the basis of a sane and balanced exposition of Scripture which they felt would commend itself to the spiritual mind. They also stated that their policy was to maintain the positive and constructive, and so refuse the critical or controversial.
We are only too willing to embrace and again declare our commitment to these original guiding principles, as we face once more, the transfer of the work of the editor to different hands, and fifty-six years on since the first publication.
The first committee set down the pattern and character of the magazine that we now seek to make available to the people of God. The cultural and spiritual climate may have changed significantly but the need they perceived of a balanced and positive presentation of relevant truth from the Scriptures differs little from that of 1945.
We have no mandate from the Lord's people for the magazine, but accept one as from the Lord Himself. We make no claim to be a representative voice for a particular group. Our only perspective is to be open to the Lord Himself. As we receive welcome signs of His approval and guidance through the encouragement of the many who sense His help through the pages of the magazine, then we shall, by His grace, continue to press on with the work.
Our brother, Arthur Shearman, who will be shepherding me through these early days of editing, was, and has remained my father in the faith. It is a great privilege to be called upon to take the magazine on after having seen him lay the foundations to making it the very acceptable, balanced and widely read magazine that it is today. We do owe him our grateful thanks in the Lord for the many hundreds of hours he has spent on the behalf of Precious Seed. Thankfully we shall continue to have his spiritual counsel on the committee for some years to come, in the will of the Lord.
In this enlarged issue we have further help on our responsibilities as stewards and several articles to encourage us to get to know our God in His capacity to love and care. We commence in this issue, an expository series by Tom Bentley on the First Epistle to the Thessalonians. It has been placed in the central section so that it can be removed to be filed separately if desired. We trust this will be a continuing and welcome strength to the contents of the magazine.
Once again we would appeal for your prayerful support as we move forward to develop the magazine. We would hope to build on the foundations of the past and yet be clearly relevant to the demanding needs of the present generation of assemblies and their testimony.