As I See It

By Charles Wilson | May 6, 2021
the ARP Retirement Program 2020

A TRIBUTE 2021 began with the announcement of the death of the Reverend Henry Lewis Smith, my friend since 1970. In the summer of 1972, my wife and I became Associate Reformed Presbyterians when we united with the Covenant Presbyterian Church in Winer Haven, Florida. Henry was the founding pastor of the congregation. More than a pastor, Henry was my friend and mentor. What little I know about the political nature of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, I learned from him. In 1969, theological orthodoxy in the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church was on the verge of collapse. In those days, we lived in the menacing shadow of the old “Southern” Presbyterian Church (PCUS). Whatever they did, we thought we had...

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Joseph: Father Of Christmas

By Charles Wilson | December 22, 2020
Joseph Father Of Christmas Gherardo Delle Notti San Giuseppe ARPTalk Reverend Chuck Wilson Synod

Other than Jesus, do you have a favorite Christmas character? I do. It’s Joseph, and I call him the father of Christmas. However, before I tell you why, let me begin with a story. I don’t have many childhood memories of Christmas. I was the only child of older parents, who were no-nonsense people. They were in their 30s when they married in 1942, and they waited until after World War Two to have a child. Daddy explained he wasn’t going to chance dying in the war and leaving mama to raise a child alone. We didn’t make much of Christmas. Both daddy and mama worked, often daddy worked on Christmas Day, and the fruit packing company mama worked for...

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Dysfunctional Family (2) A Two Part Analysis of the Meeting of General Synod

By Charles Wilson | November 6, 2020
ARP Church Family 2 ARPTalk Reverend Chuck Wilson Synod

DYSFUNCTIONAL FAMILY (2) A Two Part Analysis of the Meeting of General Synod In the last issue of ARPTalk, by identifying the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church as a dysfunctional family, I am sure I offended some of my more sensitive readers who live in the fragile world of nice. However, as I was taught in counseling (and I have found it to be true in ministry), families of more than one person are dysfunctional — and it’s to be expected. We have a theological and Biblical answer. Sin breaks everything about us. Sin makes us dysfunctional. Holding our views on the corruptive, invasive, and pervasive nature of sin, I am shocked when conservative and evangelical Presbyterians live as though they...

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Dysfunctional Family (1) A Two Part Analysis of the Meeting of General Synod

By Charles Wilson | October 31, 2020
ARP Church Family ARPTalk Reverend Chuck Wilson Synod

DYSFUNCTIONAL FAMILY (1) A Two Part Analysis of the Meeting of General Synod The meeting of General Synod last Thursday and Friday (October 22 and 23) sparked my imagination. In the beautiful sanctuary of the First Presbyterian Church of Columbia, SC, we heard numerous delegates speak of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church as “family.” Well, are we family because we are small (and, indeed, we are small and very scattered)? Are we family because so many of us are blood-related (and such was the case and much more when I became an Associate Reformed Presbyterian in 1972)? Are we family because so many of our ministers are graduates of Reformed Theological Seminary (but most of us who are RTS grads...

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Questions and Answers

By Charles Wilson | July 5, 2020
Questions and Answers by Chuck Wilson ARPTalk Associate reformed Presbyterian Church

Recently, a number of friends have asked me about the goings on which are presently so troublesome. I have been encouraged to share my thoughts. So, I said, “Email me your questions, and I will see what I can do.” Below are a few of my responses to friends’ questions. I have given my friends noms de plume. QUESTION ONE: (Richard) “Am I correct in thinking what we appear to be seeing in America today is a conflict being fueled by differences between world views (Biblical, which has a vertical perspective, verses postmodernism, which has a horizontal perspective)? The current, most robust version of postmodernism is referred to as “critical race theory.” Is this conflict being actively used by those...

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What’s in a Word?

By Charles Wilson | May 10, 2020
Floccinaucinihilipilification ARPTalk ARP Church Wilson Returning Payment Protection Program Money

As a lover of long words, a long word describes my thinking in this post. In a time of financial uncertainty, watching the churchmen who run Central Services in Greenville applying for a government loan instead of appealing to God’s people in the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church is gut-wrenching. Does this reflect a distrust of the people in the pews? Has the ARP Center become the Vatican of Greenville? Have the various boards and agencies distanced themselves so far from the people of the pews they have become parachurch organizations? And, like parachurch organizations, are their own agendas and continuation the foremost priority? Have they lost their role as servants of Christ’s people in the congregations? Like politicians in Washington,...

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The Noble and the Ignoble

By Charles Wilson | April 14, 2020
The Noble and the Ignoble ARPTalk ARP Church Applies for a Government Loan Executive Board Chuck Wilson

On an episode of Arial America about Hawaii, I heard the story of Father Damien of Molokai. Born in 1840 in Belgium, he became a Catholic priest and was sent as a missionary to the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1864. In those days, leprosy was considered contagious and incurable, and lepers were isolated in leper colonies. The secluded island of Molokai was designated a leper colony by the Royal Board of Health, and lepers were sent to Molokai to fend for themselves as best as they could until death. Without resources to care for the leper colony, the government could only supply a little food. Volunteering to serve as priest to the lepers on Molokai, Father Damien arrived on the...

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Synod Report: Thank God for Ax-Throwing!

By Charles Wilson | July 5, 2019

The meeting of General Synod of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church this year was at Geneva College in Beaver Falls, PA. In 2015, at our invitation, the delegates of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America traveled south, to Bonclarken, to meet with us, and this year, at their invitation, the delegates of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church traveled north (or most of us did) to meet with them. Traveling roundtrip, a total of 24 hours in the backseat of a Lexus, with my knees stuck under my chin was not the high point of the meeting of General Synod. For me, the high points were two: (1) Geneva College and (2) an ax-throwing excursion in Pittsburg. Doubtlessly, Geneva College,...

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By Charles Wilson | March 1, 2019
President Rob Gustafson ARPTalk Chuck Wilson Betrayal

Unless there is great duress, a college board goes in the direction the president desires and sets. With the concurrence of the board’s chairman and input from chief administrators, the president oversees and approves the framing of agendas for board meetings. The Erskine board meeting in Due West last Thursday and Friday (February 21 and 22) was not an exception to the rule. The outcome saw the fulfillment of President Rob Gustafson’s agenda: the betrayal of those who worked to make him president. That is, the betrayal of those he convinced his vision for Erskine was a Christ-centered college, an Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church controlled college, Christian liberal arts college, and a college which emphasized academics over athletics. So, what...

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Urbana 18: Cultural Marxism

By Charles Wilson | January 28, 2019
ARPTalk Urbana 18 Celebrates Cultural Marxism Reverend Chuck Wilson

Since 1946, the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship sponsored Urbana Conference has probably been the leading platform in the evangelical Christian community for challenging young Christian men and women to a life of evangelism as missionaries. Held every three years, the most recent Urbana Conference occurred in St. Louis, MO, on December 27-31, 2018. I attended college and seminary with friends who found their way to the mission field through an Urbana challenge. In the past, I have either given or raised funds for students to attend Urbana. The folks at our Associate Reformed Presbyterian World Witness office encourage our college students who are contemplating a missions career to attend Urbana. As stated above, Urbana 18 occurred last month. What was the...

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