Chuck Colson: A Life Remembered

A Message from Helwys Society Forum

Evangelicalism in America experienced a great loss just one week ago. Born on October 16, 1931, Charles “Chuck” W. Colson passed away at the age of 80 on April 21, 2012. Many Christians in America know Colson for his years of educating and equipping believers to confront the moral decay growing within many intellectual, social, and cultural institutions. Yet it was Colson’s own pre-conversion life that made his voice so unique among other cultural observers.

Colson was infamous for his years as a senior aide to President Richard Nixon. In his own words, Colson was Nixon’s “hatchet-man.” This ultimately resulted in prison-time for Colson because of his participation in the Watergate Scandal. It was in prison that Colson would be marvelously converted after reading C. S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity. This conversion led to the publication of his book Born Again. From there Colson would go on to nearly 40 years of groundbreaking ministry. He founded Prison Fellowship in 1976 and Justice Fellowship in 1983. In recent years, he authored the ecumenical Manhattan Declaration (2009). See also The Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview.

While much more could be said, many others who were shaped by Colson’s influence have paid tribute to this faithful soldier of the cross. Jonathan Aitken, a noted biographer of Colson, reflects on Colson’s passing here at Christianity Today online. Additionally, some of these resources below might be useful for those wanting to appreciate further Colson’s life and work.

Works By Colson

Born Again – Colson’s memoir published in 1976.

Loving God – One of Colson’s popular early works (1983).

How Now Shall We Live? – Colson co-authored this important volume with Nancy Pearcey in 1999. The title explicitly testifies to the profound influence that Francis Schaeffer had upon Colson.

Remembering Colson

Charles W. Colson: A Life Redeemed – Jonathan Aitken’s biography of Colson.

Seven Lessons from Chuck Colson and Other Colson News – A message from Timothy George, Dean of Beeson Divinity School.

“Be Not Afraid!” – A Memorial Service Homily.

Let us remember the celebrated life of Chuck Colson!

Author: Matthew Steven Bracey

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  1. To the Sources: Retrieving the Christian Theological Tradition: Part 2 | Helwys Society Forum - […] Catholics, and Orthodox Christians. The original drafters include the late evangelical leader Charles Colson, Princeton professor Robert P. George…
  2. 2015 ERLC Conference: Review and Reflection | Helwys Society Forum - […] on public influence and transformation; Gerson suggested the Wilberforce Option and pointed to Chuck Colson (with whom he closely…
  3. Recommended Books (Fall 2017) | Helwys Society Forum - […] as well as his association with many other evangelical causes and institutions. Though there are other books of his…

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