The problem with philosophies like that of Bishop John Spong is that, if what such folks claim is believed, it would be hypocrisy to go on calling ourselves Christians. If we abandon the faith once delivered to us in order to espouse the philosophy of Bishop Spong, shouldn’t we be known as Spongites or a reasonable facsimile? After all, what does Jesus have to do with Spong’s understanding of what he calls Christianity? It seems to me that Spong is no more than a modern money changer in today’s Temple of God, seeking to make a living off the name of God in just as unethical a manner as was done in the first century CE.
In this video (HERE) Chris points out that Bishop Spong no longer believes in the theistic God of the Bible. Okay, so why doesn’t he simply leave the church and begin his own movement? Well, that might be a little difficult to do, so it seems he has taken a lesson from the pages of early Christianity where heretics simply began a movement within orthodox Christianity and then left. If more numbers were needed, the heretic might ‘repent’, and once received back by the Church, he would begin preaching his heresy once more and leave again with still more followers. In other words, hitting the pavement is not what folks like this want. There is a better living to be made by using orthodoxy as much as possible. What I find most amusing about all this is that Christians are often called hypocrites, because some of us act differently than what we preach, but folks like Spong are never referred to in this manner. Just a thought!
One of the motives for Spong’s change of heart has been, “Due to the relentless march of human knowledge and awareness, the God we once knew had died …and as seekers of truth we have to embrace that death” (emphasis mine). Here is another person who believes God is not the Truth (John 14:6), that truth exists apart from God. Spong’s decision to remove God from his understanding and his trust in the random knowledge of this world (Romans 1:28) is fated for destruction as our reality becomes clearer.
Another straw man reared its head in this video when Chris announced: “Our view of the natural world, the view espoused by Christian scripture, began in three tiers. The earth was flat, and the earth was where we lived. Beneath the earth was hell. Above the earth was the sky and above the sky was heaven where our holy God lived and ruled over human life. This was the world where Jesus ascended to the sky to return to God after his death. This was the world where a light from heaven surrounded Saul. Yet, these ‘world images’ of Hebrew and Christian scripture began to falter as the argument and the evidence began supporting the idea of a round earth, slowly spreading from ancient Greek culture to the rest of the world.” [emphasis mine]
While it may be important to note that all ancient cultures once believed in a flat earth “domed by a firmament shaped like an inverted bowel” (see HERE), this is not a Biblical viewpoint. To begin with, we might consider Job 22:14 where it is claimed that the Lord walks in the ‘circuit’ or circle of the heavens (presumably speaking of our sky or atmosphere, but the text isn’t that clear), or Job 26:7 where the scripture says the Lord hung the earth upon nothing. I don’t know how else we might view that than imagining a globe like the moon above the earth. We might also turn to Isaiah 4:22 where the prophet calls the earth a circle. Nevertheless, as I claimed in a previous blog in this series, the Bible doesn’t claim to be a book of science. Some have tried to draw scientific conclusions from it, while others have read vain pagan assumptions into the Bible by using other nations’ explanations of earth and the heavens to interpret what the Hebrew / Christian scriptures claim. This is a very subjective thing to do, and is more reflective of a bigoted approach to the scriptures, presumably, in order that the straw man these folks build might be overlooked by their readers in their effort to expose how ridiculous they assume our scriptures are.
One thing about this particular video I thought was interesting was Chris’s photo of Carl Sagan and behind him was a photo of space showing it was 93 billion light years in diameter. This would mean, if I pointed in any direction from where I sit at this moment, the furthest point would be some 46 billion light years away. I wondered how we knew this, since the universe, according to the latest estimates, is only about 13 billion years old. If the Big Bang is true, and it all began a little over 13 billion years ago, how did the boundary of the space envelop travel over three times as fast than light to get where it is today? Can anything other than light travel as fast as light? Can anything travel faster than light? If memory serves time stops at the speed of light and nothing can get anywhere before it begins its journey. In other words, if there is no time at the speed of light, to say something could travel faster than light is the same as saying it can travel faster than time. Therefore, it gets to its destination before it leaves its starting point. This doesn’t make sense, at least not in the truth I am able to understand.
 Since Spong admits to trusting in this type of knowledge and uses it to say the God of the Bible doesn’t exist, it thought I’d express my thoughts about this particular scientific analysis. It may seem off-point to some, but I don’t think it is.