This issue of Priscilla Papers begins the journal’s thirtieth year! The first issue, winter of 1987, opened with an article by Kari Torjesen Malcolm. Additional authors included Alvera Mickelsen and Catherine Clark Kroeger, CBE’s founding president. Other early leaders of CBE included James Alsdurf, James Beck, Gilbert Bilezikian, Diane Chynoweth, Betty Elliott, W. Ward Gasque, Stan Gundry, Ruth Hall, Gretchen Gaebelein Hull, Richard Kroeger, Deborah Olsoe Lunde, Jo Anne Lyon, Faith Martin, Alice Mathews, Susan McCoubrie, Dorothy Meyer, Berkeley Mickelsen, Roger Nicole, Nancy Graf Peters, and Betty Shunk. Disturbed by the shallow biblical premise used to exclude the gifts of women, such leaders determined that a national organization was needed to promote biblical equality. Thus CBE was established on January 2, 1988, about a year after Priscilla Papers first went to press.
The founding editor of Priscilla Papers was Elizabeth “Betty” Kroeger Elliott, daughter of Catherine Clark Kroeger and Richard Kroeger. Gretchen Gaebelein Hull then served as editor from 1989–2000, and under her leadership the journal found traction in the evangelical world. An expanded issue, containing twenty-one articles from the first decade, celebrated the journal’s tenth anniversary in the winter of 1998. During a four-issue transitional period (spring 1999 – winter 2000), Tina Ostrander joined Gretchen as co-editor.
Carol R. Theissen became editor in the spring of 2000. Under her leadership, Priscilla Papers received a visual makeover and recruited a group of consulting theologians to ensure the journal’s academic excellence. To grow our capacities as theological publishers, Carol enrolled CBE’s journals in the Evangelical Press Association (EPA) for critique and learning—a move that has earned Priscilla Papers a total of seventeen EPA awards. Carol, whose editing work with Priscilla Papers came after a career with Christianity Today, passed to the presence of the Lord in May 2003. Victoria Peterson-Hilleque became acting editor for five issues in 2003–2004.
In the autumn of 2004, William Spencer began his decade of service as editor of Priscilla Papers. Forgive my understatement when I say that the journal flourished under the leadership of Bill and Aída Besançon Spencer. In the autumn of 2006, Chelsea DeArmond and Kevin Giles stepped in as guest editors for an expanded twentieth anniversary issue, the opening pages of which featured an editorial much like this one and also showed the evolution of the six cover formats to date.
In the fall of 2014, editorship passed from Bill Spencer to me, Jeff Miller. At the same time, Theresa Garbe replaced the ever capable Deb Beatty Mel as associate editor and graphic designer. Small changes were made to the cover format (did you notice?), and we began occasionally publishing sermons as a service to the church and its worship. In 2015, a Peer Review Team of scholars began assisting the journal, and the several indexing services which include Priscilla Papers expanded to include the American Theological Library Association Religion Database.
This issue of Priscilla Papers is largely about marriage; looking ahead, the spring 2016 issue will address certain aspects of Paul’s letters.
Soli Deo Gloria! May God continue to bless CBE and its academic journal, Priscilla Papers.