THE WORD OF TRUTH MINISTRY
228 NORTH EL MOLINO AVENUE
PASADENA, CALIFORNIA 91101-1675
Otis Q. Sellers, Founder **** David R. Hettema, Director
Volume 2, No. 48 Jane Sellers Hancock, Editor July 2009
THOUGHTS FROM THE EDITOR
Jane S. Hancock (page 1)
You know him as Otis Q. Sellers, the founder of The Word of Truth Ministry. I know him as “Dad.”
Since in this Bulletin we are advertising the publication of two books by Otis Q. Sellers, Seed & Bread, Volume I and Volume II, I thought you might like to know something of the history of these volumes and how involved four generations of the Sellers family have been along with other volunteers from The Word of Truth Ministry.
For three decades he had been publishing a magazine, The Word of Truth, but in 1971 he began writing four-page leaflets on various Biblical subjects, each one under the collective title of Seed & Bread. He wrote on legal-size yellow tablets with a Parker fountain pen, turning the pages over to me to type. Every few months Mother and Dad and I and a few friends, including David Hettema and his wife Norma, would gather in my parents’ dining room, kitchen, and mail room to send out an issue of the Bulletin along with three or four of the Seed & Bread studies, hot off the press. We called them “stuffing parties.”
By 1978 he had written one hundred. Readers were asking for complete sets. We needed to do something, but what? Although each one was numbered, there were no page numbers. Could we put them into a book form? Could we make the books ourselves? We could.
We now had “collating parties.” There were two ways to do this. Both ways took many dining room and kitchen tables and card tables. Stacks of each issue of Seed & Bread were lined up in order and we “danced” around the tables picking up one at a time until we had a collection from No. 1 to No. 100 in our hands. Another way was to reverse the process by deciding how many we wanted to make, say fifty for example, lay out in rows fifty copies on No. 100. Then put fifty copies of No. 99 on top of those fifty, and so on, until we reached No. 1 on top. We put rubber bands around them, placed them in a box, to be trimmed and bound. We collated, family and friends, several thousand books.
And Dad was still writing. He wrote until he had his stroke in 1987. By then he had reached No. 199.
After his death five years later, we knew we had to take the remaining ninety-nine issues and put them together in an easy-to-handle volume. The collating parties continued. We bought a spiral binding machine and large plastic combs. We recruited more volunteers: Gary Harrison; the Hammond family.
Storage became a problem. We were running out of supplies. How many should we re-print? Was this the best way to handle the wealth of material? The original manuscripts had been type-set. We had no electronic storage of these studies. What to do.
Bob Hammond scanned all the issues and put them on our Web site, seedandbread.org. But we were still getting requests for the spiral bound volumes, which meant more and more collating parties.
I now want to introduce the third and fourth generations who worked on this project. All of my five sons helped when they could. As a teenager, son Russ Hancock worked in the Word of Truth mailroom when my dad was alive. Stuffing envelopes and mailing packages. Russ now has children of his own. His oldest son, Jason, was beginning college. Could Jason take the scanned Seed & Bread leaflets and put them together in some way to make an attractive book? Could he eliminate the heading and footer that was on each issue? Could he make all the titles the same font? Could he add some decoration to make the finished product look really good? Could he get it “publisher ready?” He could and he did—over college winter break, December 2007, 2008.
Last month the first copies arrived from the publisher—paper back and hard back, real books with ISBN numbers, a publisher. I’m buying seven sets right away—one set for me, one for each of my five sons and one set for Jason.
That’s how we get things done at The Word of Truth Ministry. We hope you enjoy the books.
FROM THE DIRECTOR
David R. Hettema (page 2)
In March of 1979, Bible teacher Otis Q. Sellers produced a Seed & Bread Bible study leaflet No. 105, entitled What Is Faith? In this article as part of his study he wrote this definition of the word faith: “Faith is taking God at His Word and responding accordingly.”
This definition has become a treasured key to many of Sellers’ Bible students. It opens the Word of God to related truths about how a man can be saved: For by grace you have been saved through faith and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast (Eph. 2:8-9, NKJV).
We are saved because God is gracious, but it is through faith (a word or words from Him) that we can believe and respond accordingly to achieve the reward of faith.
Try using this key, faith is taking God at His Word and responding accordingly, to open up Hebrews 11, the faith chapter. You will see this principle applied to every life experience of the honored believers mentioned in this faith portion, from Enoch to Noah and down the line to the most recent martyr.
Each individual mentioned had a Word from God to respond to, such as Abraham and his wife Sarah: By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went (Heb. 11:8, KJV). Through faith also Sarah herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged Him faithful Who had promised (Heb. 11:11, KJV).
Another example of someone in the Gospel period taking God at His Word and responding accordingly is found in Matthew: A man with leprosy came and knelt before Him and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” Jesus reached out His hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” He said. “Be clean!” Immediately he was cured of his leprosy (Matt. 8:2-3, NIV).
The three people of faith mentioned here, Abraham, Sarah and the leper, all followed the principle of “Faith is taking God at His Word and responding accordingly.” This is still true today.
NEW SEED AND BREAD BOUND VOLUMES
By Bob Hammond
Several years ago we embarked upon a special project to take all 199 of Otis Q. Sellers’ Seed & Bread short Bible studies and place them into spring-coil-bound volumes after assembling them manually at our hea