[First posted in AWOL 1 November 2009. Updated 31 October 2012]
For over 30 years, the Institute for Biblical Research has offered to evangelical biblical scholars and Ph.D. students a venue for creative, reflective and serious biblical scholarship. One might not have suspected such an auspicious outcome back in 1970, when a few biblical scholars gathered for lunch during the SBL meeting in New York. The meeting was called by E. Earle Ellis, the founding visionary behind IBR. He dreamed of a North American based residential reference library (non-lending) similar to that of the Tyndale Fellowship for Biblical Research, Tyndale House Library, Cambridge, England. For the following three years, a small group calling themselves the Tyndale Committee discussed the viability of creating a residential library. In the end, they were persuaded that the library vision required a societal matrix to realize its goal, and thus in 1973 was birthed the Institute for Biblical Research......Publications were a primary concern for IBR. In 1989 it launched the Bulletin for Biblical Research (BBR) under the editorship of Bruce Chilton, published by Eisenbrauns. The first journal was published in 1991. In 1994, Craig Evans continued as editor and advanced BBR to a bi-annual journal. In 2005, Richard S. Hess took over editorial responsibilities, significantly enlarging the journal. The BBR Supplement Series began in 2007 with the appearance of its first monograph.