Five Year celebration

Don’t Miss The River Five Year Anniversary Celebration

On Sunday afternoon, October 22, The River is hosting a picnic. We’ll provide the food. You provide the company! There is no charge.

We’re celebrating five years of the Lord extending His grace and truth through the ministry of The River.

More Information


Brian Onken

Academic Director / Lead Instructor

With over three decades of experience in church and para-church ministry, Brian serves as the Academic Director and an instructor for The River. Brian has a Master’s Degree in Biblical Studies from Talbot Seminary and pursued additional doctoral-level course work in theology, obtaining a second Master’s Degree in Theology from Regent University.

He has pastored in both large and small churches, served in leadership roles in two church plants, and served as a lead researcher/teacher for the Christian Research Institute and for Walk Thru the Bible. He has taught in Bible schools and discipleship programs in Romania, the Caribbean, as well as here in the States.

He was a contributing author to the award-winning Discover God Study Bible, having written the introductions to all the New Testament books as well as content and study notes for a significant portion of the New Testament. Married for over thirty years, Brian has two grown kids. After having lived in the Midwest, the West Coast, and Mexico, he loves calling the Upstate home.

Paul Clark


Focusing on bringing truth into relationships, Paul joins the teaching team of The River in the areas of Church Ministry and Discipleship. After graduating with a Pastoral Studies/Pulpit Speech degree from Bob Jones University, Paul joined the Pastoral staff of a vibrant church in Northern Virginia. After gaining valuable experience in leadership development, pastoral care and Bible teaching, he began working towards a Master of Theology degree from Dallas Theological Seminary.

Over the last 17 years, he has served multiple roles in his local church, leading the singles ministry, small groups, Peacemaker Teams, and men’s groups. He has served as an Elder for over 12 years, and has participated in mission projects in Colombia, South America and Eleuthera, Bahamas. He and Lisa, his wife of 25 years, have a daughter and a son who follow their Savior passionately.

Craig O'Neal

Ambassador for The River

A native of Kansas City, Craig came southward to attend Bob Jones University, and then fell in love with the Upstate and has considered it home for over 40 years. He met his wonderful wife, Karen, in school and they have been richly blessed with five adult children. Ever since receiving his MBA from Clemson University in the early 1980’s Craig has been in the business world, most recently the principal and CEO of VantagePoint Marketing. In 2017, Craig sold VantagePoint and is now giving his time to do more kingdom work.

Craig was saved at an early age but only in the past 20 years has he–much because of Brian Onken’ s teaching–gained a greater understanding of grace, the preeminence of Scripture, and the Spirit’s role. As a member of Fellowship Greenville, Craig has been blessed to serve in numerous volunteer leadership roles within the church as well as serving on several other boards with other organizations. Craig’s strong belief in the mission of The River was the impetus for his desire to serve as The River’s Ambassador. In this voluntary role, Craig introduces churches to The River, providing them an understanding of how The River can come alongside them and be a resource in their discipleship efforts.