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Christian Leaders Remember Colson

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Christian Post  (4/22/2012) — While the still skeptical secular media chose to describe Chuck Colson as a “mastermind of dirty tricks” in obituary columns, Christian leaders focused on his life and work after his transformation and remembered him as a great friend, mentor, apologist and witness for Christ.

“I’m saddened by Chuck Colson’s passing yet rejoicing that he is now in the presence of the Lord he loves so much,” Lee Strobel, author and Christian apologist, told The Christian Post.

“Chuck once asked me to succeed him as head of Prison Fellowship, but I knew I could never fill his shoes,” Strobel recalled. “The world has lost a passionate, brilliant, persuasive and humble witness for Christ. Those of us who remain should redouble our efforts to define and defend the truth of Christianity to an often hostile and skeptical world, as Chuck urged us so often to do,” Strobel said after Colson’s death Saturday.

Strobel, like numerous other Christians, focused on Colson’s life after his born-again experience amid the Watergate scandal in the 1970s and his advocacy for the spiritual transformation of prisoners. But for The New York Times, Colson was still “a political saboteur for President Richard M. Nixon,” who “masterminded some of the dirty tricks that led to the president’s downfall.” The newspaper suggested that Colson “then emerged from prison to become an important evangelical leader, saying he had been ‘born again.'”

As the GetReligion.org blog pointed out, “there’s a hint that there might be some problems with the timeline the Times is working with.” The Times went on to say that Colson was sent to prison after pleading guilty to obstructing justice in the Watergate affair. “After having what he called his religious awakening behind bars, he spent much of the rest of his life ministering to prisoners, preaching the Gospels and helping to forge a coalition among Republican politicians, evangelical church leaders and Roman Catholic conservatives, helping to change the dynamics of American politics.”

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