Chuck Colson’s Life Sentence

by Eric Metaxas

Chuck Colson in prisonChuck Colson said he never really left prison. I’ll explain what he meant, and why it’s so important.

It’s one of the best photographs ever taken of Chuck Colson. Chuck is in a prison gymnasium, dressed, as always, in coat and tie, Bible tucked under one arm. And he’s reaching into the bleachers, smiling ear to ear, to grasp the hand of an African-American prisoner clad in prison dungarees.

Go to to see the picture — and to understand the heart of Chuck’s legacy: his identification with those behind bars.

Apart from Watergate, Chuck is best-known for his ministry to prisoners. But to say that Chuck ministered to prisoners is to miss the point almost entirely. The seven months Chuck spent in prison changed the way Chuck saw the world and his role in it. It placed prisoners and their families at the heart of Chuck’s concerns and priorities.

To understand why, you have to understand that, contrary you may have read, Chuck did not experience a “jailhouse conversion.” On the contrary, you could argue that he went to prison as a result of becoming a Christian…


Chuck Colson’s Life Sentence – Breakpoint



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