Richard F. Wilson

Rick Wilson peruses a copy of J. L. Dagg's Manual of Theology, which is part of the Jack Tarver Library's Special Collections.I came to Mercer in 1988. My years at Mercer have been both exciting and rewarding.

"Teaching theologian" is how I usually describe myself. By inclination and training I am driven to ask and explore questions about how God is present in creation, in history, and in the midst of communities of faith. I ask and explore those questions in the context of my own participation in the Baptist tradition, which always shapes my understanding of what it means to be a Christian. At the same time I am eager to learn from the rich traditions found in the history of the Judeo-Christian communities, Islam, and the varied religions in the East.

At Mercer I have been challenged to live and work by the integrity of my questions. Mercer’s distinct heritage as a Baptist university reminds me of the importance of the freedom of conscience and a willingness to grant others the freedom to explore their own questions and commitments. Also I am continually renewed by the questions and commitments of my students and co-workers in the university.

My teaching includes courses that introduce the literature, history, and faith of the Old and New Testaments. I regularly teach upper-level courses that engage some aspect of Christian Theology. Over the years, I have taught gladly in the Great Books Program of the College of Liberal Arts. More recently I have taught INT 301, Engaging the World.

Mercer is not my whole life, however. Since 1995 I have been involved with the Baptist World Alliance. In 2001 I joined the Commission on Christian Ethics, and in 2010 I was named to a five-year stint as Chair of the Commission on Christian Ethics. Attending those meetings gives Lucy (my wife since 1975) and me a chance to travel together every year.

I have a passion for baseball, too. Nearly every year I take an extended vacation during which I visit as many minor league and major league parks as I can.

Finally, my life is refreshed by my active involvement in the life of the Church. I am a deacon at the First Baptist Church in Macon. I teach Sunday School. Also, I enjoy preaching and teaching in churches across the southeast. 

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