Many people have asked questions regarding the history of e-Sword, this ministry, who I am, etc. This page will hopefully answer some of those questions, as well as provide a time line of how GOD has blessed this effort.
I (Rick Meyers) was born in 1962 in sunny southern California, saved by the grace of GOD in 1980, married my beautiful wife in 1988, and have two wonderful children—a daughter and son, in that order.
The Holy Spirit chose to give me the gift of teaching, which I have been using since 1991. It was this same time that He gave me the desire to program computers (funny how that works). Nine years later GOD combined my passion for His Word and my pleasure of programming, and e-Sword was birthed!
History of eSword
- Jan. 2000The first lines of code for e-Sword are written. e-Sword is birthed with a clear vision of user interface and study approach: keep it simple and do the obvious!
- Apr. 2000e-Sword version 1.0 is released, complete with its unique user interface layout, popup ToolTips, Study Notes editor, verse comparison, and synchronized commentaries and dictionaries. It was immediately posted on the Internet . . . now if only people can find it!
- Aug. 2000e-Sword version 2.0 is released. Improvements included the ability to search commentaries and dictionaries, and highlighting Scripture.
- Sept. 2000People are starting to find e-Sword on the Internet. Time to find a new host to handle the bandwidth requirements now exceeding 10GB per month.
- Jan. 2001e-Sword version 3.0 is released. Many enhancements to the Study Notes editor, including a spell checker and thesaurus, and the Topic Notes mode was added. Complete control to the layout and appearance of e-Sword, including which resources are displayed.
- Mar. 2001Hosting problems continue. Bandwidth requirements now exceed 50GB per month and no commercial solution can be found. The LORD intervenes and finds a brother with a couple of T-1 lines that I can use. Favorable reviews of e-Sword are popping up all over the Internet, driving even more traffic to the web site.
- Apr. 2001Equipping Ministries Foundation is founded to allow users to contribute financially to this ministry. The first year of supporting the development and deployment of e-Sword was financed entirely by myself, but now it has grown to the point that this is no longer possible.
- May 2001e-Sword version 4.0 is released. Most of the enhancements were to make e-Sword even easier to use and enjoy. The Graphics Viewer was added so that maps and charts could now become part of the ever-growing library of e-Sword resources.
- June 2001The Lockman Foundation grants permission to the use of the “New American Standard Bible” and “La Biblia de las Américas” Bibles. This is the first major publisher to cooperate with e-Sword.
- July 2001The 100,000th download of e-Sword occurs! Bandwidth is exceeding 100GB per month and the two T-1 lines are not enough. I suppose this is a good problem, but now another new home must be found. The LORD finds another brother who offers a T-3 line to accommodate the load.
- Aug. 2001GOD is good! Much prayer has been lifted to find a permanent solution to the hosting problems. By a miracle, GOD directs the mouse clicks of a brother who “stumbles” upon the e-Sword web site. He has the ultimate solution for hosting e-Sword, directly on the Internet through his Tier One national backbone! Another brother donates a web server, and now e-Sword can be downloaded at unparalleled speed with unlimited bandwidth available! Just in time, too, as the downloads now exceed 500GB per month.
- Sep. 2001e-Sword version 5.0 is released. The parallel Bible feature was added, as well as the ability to maximize the Bible, commentary and dictionary views.In the three weeks after September 11th, e-Sword is downloaded over 40,000 times!
- Oct. 2001Sovereign Grace Publishers is now including e-Sword with all new editions of the “Modern King James Bible” and “Literal Translation Version” Bibles.
- Nov. 2001The company I worked for files bankruptcy, and obviously I am no longer employed by them. Through much prayer and confirmation I begin to work on e-Sword on a full time basis. This ministry is the only means of support for me and my family. If you have been blessed by e-Sword, then I wish to encourage you to consider supporting this ministry as the LORD leads.
- Dec. 2001e-Sword version 5.5 is released. New features included Extended Search and Analyze Verses. The e-Sword resource library now exceeds 500MB of disk space.The 250,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- Apr. 2002e-Sword version 6.0 is released. A STEP Reader was added, as well as a Daily Devotion feature. The Study Notes are now tied to verses rather than chapters.
- June 2002The 500,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- Oct. 2002e-Sword version 6.5 is released. New features included Prayer Requests and the Topic Notes editor is now separated from the Study Notes editor. The e-Sword resource library now exceeds 1 gigabyte of disk space.American Bible Society grants permission to the use of the “Contemporary English Version” and “Good News Translation” Bibles for free!
Heritage Educational Systems makes available STEP libraries so that anyone can have a seminary library in their own home!
- Feb. 2003Bandwidth challenges revisited! My gracious bandwidth provider FNSI was sold to Cogent leaving e-Sword without a home. “But GOD …” (one of my favorite phrases in the Bible) already had a plan in place. Apparently those press releases written by FNSI were written for this very occasion. A fellow Christian brother who runs AO Technologies came across them the very same day and contacted me. His offer was just as gracious, and his bandwidth just as plentiful! Good thing, too, as the downloads now exceed a terabyte each month.
- Mar. 2003e-Sword version 7.0 is released. New features included customizable Bible Reading Plan and Bible Split View. Search capability was added to the STEP Reader.
- Apr. 2003
The 1,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- Dec. 2003Pocket e-Sword version 1.0 is released for use on Pocket PC platforms. The really cool thing about Pocket e-Sword is that you can have a complete seminary library with you wherever you go!
- Jan. 20041.5 million downloads of e-Sword so far . . . and counting! Pocket e-Sword is downloaded nearly 20,000 times in the first month of its release! Who knew there were that many Pocket PC packin’ Christians out there?The Lockman Foundation grants permission to the use of the “Amplified Bible”.
- Mar. 2004AMG Publishers grants permission to the use of “The Complete Word Study Dictionary” series by Dr. Spiros Zodhiates, Dr. Warren Baker and Dr. Eugene Carpenter.
- Apr. 2004Good News Publishers grants permission to the use of the “English Standard Version” Bible for free!
- Aug. 2004
The 2,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
The 100,000th download of Pocket e-Sword also occurs!
- Oct. 2004Pocket e-Sword is named a finalist in the Best Bible Software category of the 2004 Pocket PC Magazine Best Software Awards.
- Feb. 2005AMG Publishers grants permission to the use of “Key Word Commentary” and “Encyclopedia of Bible Facts”.
- Feb. 2005The 250,000th download of Pocket e-Sword occurs!Downloads now exceed 5 terabytes of bandwidth each month!
- July 2005e-Sword version 7.7 is released. New features included a Scripture Memory tool.
- Aug. 2005
The 3,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- Oct. 2005Pocket e-Sword is named a finalist in the Best Bible Software category of the 2005 Pocket PC Magazine Best Software Awards.
- Jan. 2006The 500,000th download of Pocket e-Sword occurs!
- Mar. 2006A partnership with eStudySource is created to provide popular copyright protected resources for use in e-Sword.Over 1 million Bibles and other e-Sword add-on modules are downloaded each month! Because of such heavy traffic, bandwidth can no longer be provided for free. This is a good problem, but an expensive one also.
- May 2006
The 4,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- Aug. 2006On August 17th the President of the United States of America signed into law the “Pension Protection Act of 2006”. While there were many good changes in this bill, one specific change rendered my foundation “Equipping Ministries Foundation” useless for fulfilling the purpose for which it was founded—funding the continued development and deployment of e-Sword. The foundation will be dissolved at the end of the year, and tax-deductible donations can no longer be accepted.You can still contribute to the cause and get an e-Sword CD, but there is no longer any tax advantage to contributing. All that remains is satisfaction in knowing that you are helping to keep e-Sword available for people all around the world in over 160 countries. Over 5 million people have been blessed by its availability, so hopefully another 5 million will get the same opportunity.
- Sep. 2006Christian Computing Magazine published an article about e-Sword. You can read it here.
- Dec. 2006e-Sword version 7.8 is released. New features included a Gospel Harmony tool.
- Jan. 2007
The 5,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- May 2007
The 1,000,000th download of Pocket e-Sword occurs!
- July 2007
The 6,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- Oct. 2007Pocket e-Sword is named a finalist in the Best Bible Software category of the 2007 Smartphone & Pocket PC Magazine Best Software Awards.
- Nov. 2007Christian Computing Magazine published another article about e-Sword. You can read it here.
- Jan. 2008e-Sword version 7.9 is released. New features included a Sermon Illustrations tool and stronger Strong’s implementation throughout the program.The 7,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- May 2008After 18 months in the making, e-Sword LIVE is launched! If you own a MAC or other non-Windows based computer, visit Internet cafés, or just away from your own PC, you can still have an unparalleled online Bible study experience with e-Sword LIVE.
- July 2008
The 8,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs!
- Dec. 2008e-Sword version 8.0 is released. New features included a completely localized user interface and numerous languages already supported! The Orthodox Apocrypha is now supported, in addition to the Catholic Deuterocanon.
- Apr. 2009After 9 years and 9,000,000 downloads, e-Sword version 9.0 is released! New features include a completely new database architecture, case-sensitive searches, and Study Notes can be made on any verse in the Bible, now including the Orthodox Apocrypha and the Catholic Deuterocanon.
- Sep. 2009e-Sword version 9.5 is released. New features include a fully dockable user interface which enables you to completely customize the layout in hundreds of different ways!
- Jan. 2010
2.5 million downloads of e-Sword in 2009!
- Apr. 2010e-Sword version 9.6 is released. New features include highlighting and marking in commentaries and dictionaries!
- Sep. 2010e-Sword version 9.7 is released. New features include a new Journal Notes editor and searching with Regular Expressions!Christian Computing Magazine published another article about e-Sword. You can read it here.
- Oct. 2010
In the past 6 months e-Sword has been downloaded in 225 countries around the world! The Gospel has found its way into every corner of the world, so come Lord Jesus!
- Jan. 2011
Over 3.5 million downloads of e-Sword in 2010, for a grand total of over 15 million downloads!
e-Sword version 9.8 is released. New features include a Module Downloader built into the program enabling you to download any of the available resources directly into e-Sword!
- Apr. 2011e-Sword version 9.9 is released. New features include completely redesigned Search dialogs providing even more information for study!
- Nov. 2011e-Sword version 10.0 is released! New features include completely redesigned Editors providing even more functionality, a new Reference Library, and integrated audio sermons from SermonAudio.com!
- Jan. 2012
Nearly 5 million downloads of e-Sword in 2011, for a grand total of 20 million downloads!
- Mar. 2012e-Sword version 10.1 is released. New features include the ability for Commentary, Dictionary, and Devotion views to display pictures, so modules can now be created with pictures in them.
- Oct. 2012e-Sword HD version 1.0 is released for the iPad! The world’s most popular Bible study software is now available on the world’s most advanced mobile operating system!
- Jan. 2013
The 25,000,000th download of e-Sword occurs! e-Sword is being downloaded in 230 countries around the world!
- Mar. 2013e-Sword LT version 1.0 is released for the iPhone! The world’s most popular Bible study software is now available on the world’s most advanced mobile operating system!
- June 2013e-Sword version 10.2 is released. New features include the built-in Downloader now allows direct downloading of Premium modules without needing to run separate EXE files.Christian Computing Magazine published another article about e-Sword. You can read it here.
- July 2013Christian Computing Magazine published another article about e-Sword. You can read it here.
- Aug. 2013Christian Computing Magazine published another article about e-Sword. You can read it here.