|Denomination||Episcopal Church in the United States of America|
|See||Episcopal Diocese of Newark|
|Title||Bishop of Newark|
|Period in office||1979 — 2000|
|Consecration||June 12, 1976|
|Predecessor||George E. The Episcopal Church is the official name of the Province of the Anglican Communion in the United States. History Anglicans have been worshipping in the area since 1695 Year 1979 ( MCMLXXIX) was a Common year starting on Monday (link displays the 1979 Gregorian calendar) 2000 ( MM) was a Leap year that started on Saturday of the Common Era, in accordance with the Gregorian calendar. Events 1381 - Peasants' Revolt: in England, rebels arrive at Blackheath. Year 1976 ( MCMLXXVI) was a Leap year starting on Thursday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Rath|
|Successor||John P. Croneberger|
|Previous post||Bishop Coadjutor of Newark|
|Date of birth||16 June 1931|
|Place of birth||Charlotte, North Carolina|
John Shelby Spong (born 16 June 1931 in Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S.) is the retired Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Newark (based in Newark, New Jersey). Year 1955 ( MCMLV) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1955 Gregorian calendar) Events 1487 - Battle of Stoke Field, the last dying breath of the Wars of the Roses. Year 1931 ( MCMXXXI) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link will display full 1931 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Events 1487 - Battle of Stoke Field, the last dying breath of the Wars of the Roses. Year 1931 ( MCMXXXI) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link will display full 1931 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. North Carolina ( is a state located on the Atlantic Seaboard in the southeastern United States The United States of America —commonly referred to as the A bishop is an ordained or consecrated member of the Christian clergy who is generally entrusted with a position of authority and oversight The Episcopal Church is the official name of the Province of the Anglican Communion in the United States. History Anglicans have been worshipping in the area since 1695 Newark is the largest city in New Jersey, United States and the County seat of Essex County. New Jersey ( is a state in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern regions of the United States. He is a liberal Christian theologian, biblical scholar, religion commentator and author. For liberal political views within Christianity see Christian left. Theology is the study of a god or the gods from a religious perspective He promotes traditionally liberal causes, such as racial equality. He also calls for a fundamental rethinking of Christian belief, away from theism and from the afterlife as reward or punishment for human behavior. Theism, in its most inclusive usage is the belief in at least one Deity. AfterLife is a film drama set in Scotland directed by Alison Peebles made in 2003 about an ambitious Scottish journalist forced to choose between Some Christians find Spong's radical interpretations of Christian belief unacceptable. Others see him as representative of a tradition of dissenting theologians like John A.T. Robinson and Don Cupitt which has been a component of Christianity and especially the Anglican tradition. The Right Reverend Dr John Arthur Thomas Robinson (1919 in Canterbury England &ndash December 5, 1983) was a New Testament scholar author Don Cupitt (born May 22, 1934) has been described as a radical theologian and is often associated with Nihilist textualism Anglicanism is a tradition of Christian faith Churches in this tradition either have historical connections to the Church of England or have similar beliefs
Spong's ideas have received strong criticism from many theologians, notably the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams (when Williams was the Bishop of Monmouth). Rowan Douglas Williams, PC, DD, DCL, FBA, (born 14 June 1950 in Swansea, Wales) is an Anglican The Bishop of Monmouth is the diocescan Bishop of the Church in Wales Diocese of Monmouth. 
Spong was educated in Charlotte public schools. He was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1952, and received his Master of Divinity degree in 1955 from the Episcopal Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia. The Phi Beta Kappa Society is an academic Honor society with the mission of "fostering and recognizing excellence" in the Undergraduate Liberal arts The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill ( UNC, North Carolina, or simply Carolina) is a public, Coeducational Research HPIM0364JPG|right|thumbnail|Aspinwall Hall dedicated 1859|200px]] Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS formally called the Protestant Episcopal Theological Seminary in Virginia Alexandria is an Independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. That seminary and Saint Paul's College have both conferred on him honorary Doctor of Divinity degrees. Saint Paul's College is a private Historically black college located in Lawrenceville Virginia.
He wrote: "[I have] immerse[d] myself in contemporary biblical scholarship at such places as Union Theological Seminary in New York City, Yale Divinity School, Harvard Divinity School and the storied universities in Edinburgh, Oxford and Cambridge. "
He served as rector of St. Joseph's Church in Durham, North Carolina from 1955 to 1957; rector of Calvary Parish, Tarboro, North Carolina from 1957 to 1965; rector of St. The word rector ("ruler" from the Latin regere and Rector meaning "Teacher" In Latin has a number of different meanings but all of them indicate an academic St Joseph's Episcopal Church is a mission of the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina. Durham is a city in the US state of North Carolina. It is the County seat of Durham County Tarboro is a town located in Edgecombe County North Carolina. John's Church in Lynchburg, Virginia from 1965 to 1969; and rector of St. Paul's Church in Richmond, Virginia from 1969 to 1976. Lynchburg is an Independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The word rector ("ruler" from the Latin regere and Rector meaning "Teacher" In Latin has a number of different meanings but all of them indicate an academic St Paul's Episcopal Church is an historic Episcopal Church in Richmond Virginia. This article is about the city of Richmond the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia. He has moreover held visiting positions and given prominent lectures at major American theological institutions, most prominently at Harvard Divinity School. Harvard Divinity School is one of the constituent schools of Harvard University, located in Cambridge Massachusetts, in the United States. He retired in 2000.
Spong's writings rely on biblical and nonbiblical sources, and are influenced by modern critical analysis of these sources (see especially Spong, 1991). Etymology According to the Online Etymology Dictionary, the word bible is from Latin biblia, traced from the same word through Medieval Latin and Late Latin He is representative of a stream of thought with roots in the medieval universalism of Peter Abelard and the existentialism of Paul Tillich, who he has called his favorite theologian. Universalism can be classified as a Religion, Theology and Philosophy that generally holds all persons and creatures are related to God or the Divine and Existentialism is a philosophical doctrine which posits that individuals create the meaning and essence of their lives and that this essence follows from their existence Paul Johannes Tillich ( August 20, 1886 &ndash October 22, 1965) was a German - American theologian and Christian 
A prominent theme in Spong's writing is that the popular, alleged "literal" interpretation of Christian scripture does not speak honestly to the situation of modern Christian communities, and that a more nuanced approach to scripture, informed by scholarship and compassion, can be consistent with both Christian Tradition and a contemporary understanding of the universe. He believes, as did his theological predecessor, Bishop John A.T. Robinson, that theism has lost credibility as a valid conception of God's nature. A bishop is an ordained or consecrated member of the Christian clergy who is generally entrusted with a position of authority and oversight The Right Reverend Dr John Arthur Thomas Robinson (1919 in Canterbury England &ndash December 5, 1983) was a New Testament scholar author Theism, in its most inclusive usage is the belief in at least one Deity. God is the principal or sole Deity in Religions and other belief systems that worship one deity. He explains that he is a Christian because he believes that Jesus Christ fully expressed the presence of a God of compassion and selfless love, and that this is the meaning of the early Christian proclamation, "Jesus is Lord" (Spong, 1994 and Spong, 1991). Jesus of Nazareth (7–2 BC / BCE —26–36 AD / CE) He rejects the historical truth claims of some Christian doctrines, such as the virgin birth (Spong, 1992) and the bodily resurrection of Jesus (Spong, 1994). The virgin birth of Jesus is a religious Tenet of Christianity and Islam which holds that Mary miraculously conceived Jesus while
Spong has also been a strong proponent of feminism, gay rights, and racial equality within both the church and society at large. Feminism is a discourse that involves various movements theories, and Philosophies which are concerned with the issue of Gender difference, advocate Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender social movements share related goals of social acceptance of Homosexuality, Bisexuality and Transgenderism Lesbian Desegregation is the process of ending Racial segregation, most commonly used in reference to the United States. Towards these ends, he calls for a new Reformation, in which many of Christianity's basic doctrines should be reformulated. The Protestant Reformation was a reform movement in Europe that began in 1517 though its roots lie further back in time These beliefs are most fully outlined in his book A New Christianity for a New World: Why Traditional Faith Is Dying and How a New Faith Is Being Born. He briefly outlines these beliefs on his web site as follows:
Martin Luther ignited the Reformation of the 16th century by nailing to the door of the church in Wittenberg in 1517 the 95 Theses that he wished to debate. The Protestant Reformation was a reform movement in Europe that began in 1517 though its roots lie further back in time Wittenberg, officially Lutherstadt Wittenberg, is a Town in Germany in the Bundesland Saxony-Anhalt, on the Elbe The Ninety-Five Theses on the Power of Indulgences, commonly known as The Ninety-Five Theses, were written by Martin Luther in 1517 I will publish this challenge to Christianity in The Voice. I will post my theses on the Internet and send copies with invitations to debate them to the recognized Christian leaders of the world. My theses are far smaller in number than were those of Martin Luther, but they are far more threatening theologically. The issues to which I now call the Christians of the world to debate are these:
1. Theism, as a way of defining God, is dead. Theism, in its most inclusive usage is the belief in at least one Deity. So most theological God-talk is today meaningless. A new way to speak of God must be found.
2. Since God can no longer be conceived in theistic terms, it becomes nonsensical to seek to understand Jesus as the incarnation of the theistic deity. So the Christology of the ages is bankrupt.
3. The biblical story of the perfect and finished creation from which human beings fell into sin is pre-Darwinian mythology and post-Darwinian nonsense. Charles Robert Darwin (February 12 1809 &ndash April 19 1882 was an English naturalist, who realised and demonstrated that all Species of life
4. The virgin birth, understood as literal biology, makes Christ's divinity, as traditionally understood, impossible.
5. The miracle stories of the New Testament can no longer be interpreted in a post-Newtonian world as supernatural events performed by an incarnate deity. Sir Isaac Newton, FRS (ˈnjuːtən 4 January 1643 31 March 1727) Biography Early years See also Isaac Newton's early life and achievements The term supernatural or supranatural ( Latin: super, supra "above" + natura "nature" pertains to entities events
6. The view of the cross as the sacrifice for the sins of the world is a barbarian idea based on primitive concepts of God and must be dismissed.
7. Resurrection is an action of God. Jesus was raised into the meaning of God. It therefore cannot be a physical resuscitation occurring inside human history.
8. The story of the Ascension assumed a three-tiered universe and is therefore not capable of being translated into the concepts of a post-Copernican space age.
9. There is no external, objective, revealed standard writ in scripture or on tablets of stone that will govern our ethical behavior for all time.
10. Prayer cannot be a request made to a theistic deity to act in human history in a particular way.
11. The hope for life after death must be separated forever from the behavior control mentality of reward and punishment. Life After Death (Originally titled "Life After Death'Till Death Do Us Part" is the Grammy -nominated second album by East Coast rapper The Church must abandon, therefore, its reliance on guilt as a motivator of behavior.
12. All human beings bear God's image and must be respected for what each person is. Therefore, no external description of one's being, whether based on race, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation, can properly be used as the basis for either rejection or discrimination. The term race or racial group usually refers to the concept of categorizing Humans into Populations or groups on the basis of various sets Gender comprises a range of differences between men and women extending from the biological to the social Sexual orientation is believed to refer to "an enduring pattern of emotional romantic and/or sexual attractions to men women or both sexes
Spong's work on the textual evolution of the role of Judas Iscariot as the betraying Jew of Jesus in the Gospels has garnered particular attention by social scientists concerned with roots of anti-Semitism in the New Testament. Judas Iscariot, יהודה איש־קריות Yəhûḏāh ʾÎš-qəriyyôṯ was according to the New Testament, one of the twelve original apostles PLEASE TAKE NOTE************ This article is about the canonical books of the New Testament Antisemitism (alternatively spelled anti-semitism or anti-Semitism; also rarely known as judeophobia) is the Prejudice against or hostility He holds fundamentally that the expanding detail given to Judas' betrayal from the synoptic gospels through to the Gospel according to John is a result of active embellishment on behalf of the those authors postdating Mark and the Q document, as a result of ideological tension resulting from initially unforeseen and increasing hostility between Jews and Christians in the early history of the church. The synoptic gospels are the first three Gospels of the New Testament in the Christian Bible. The Gospel of John (literally According to John; Greek, Κατὰ Ἰωάννην Kata Iōannēn) is the fourth Gospel in the canon "Saint Mark" redirects here For other uses see Saint Mark (disambiguation.
Gerald O'Collins, Professor of Fundamental Theology, Gregorian University, Rome, argued that Spong’s "work simply does not belong to the world of international scholarship. No genuine scholar will be taken in by this book. . . . What is said about a key verb St. Paul uses in Galatians 1:15f. Paul the apostle (שאול התרסי Šaʾul HaTarsi, meaning " Saul of Tarsus " Σαούλ Saul and Σαῦλος Saulos and The Epistle to the Galatians is a book of the New Testament. It is a letter from Paul of Tarsus to a number of early Christian communities in the Roman province of shows that the bishop [Spong] has forgotten any Greek that he knew. Greek (el ελληνική γλώσσα or simply el ελληνικά — "Hellenic" is an Indo-European language, spoken today by 15-22 million people mainly [Spong argued his case based on a Greek word that is not in the passage] . . . [my] advice for his next book is to let some real experts check it before publication. "
One critical book is entitled Can a Bishop Be Wrong? Ten Scholars Challenge John Shelby Spong, edited by Peter Moore.
Rowan Williams, the current Archbishop of Canterbury, wrote a response to Spong's 12 points in 1998, when he was the Bishop of Monmouth. Rowan Douglas Williams, PC, DD, DCL, FBA, (born 14 June 1950 in Swansea, Wales) is an Anglican The Archbishop of Canterbury is the chief bishop and principal leader of the Church of England, the symbolic head of the worldwide Anglican Communion and the The Bishop of Monmouth is the diocescan Bishop of the Church in Wales Diocese of Monmouth. Williams wrote that ". . . I cannot in any way see Bishop Spong's theses as representing a defensible or even an interesting Christian future. And I want to know whether the Christian past scripture and tradition, really appears to him as empty and sterile as this text suggests. "
Spong is the cousin of former Virginia Democratic Senator William B. Spong, Jr.. Claiborne de Borda Pell (born November 22, 1918) was a United States Senator from Rhode Island from 1961 to 1997 William Belser Spong Jr ( September 29, 1920 &ndash October 8, 1997) was a Democratic Party Politician and a
There is currently a play in production about the life of Bishop Spong called "A Pebble In My Shoe", written by Colin Cox & produced by Will & Company. He has seen the play himself at least a half dozen times at different stops around the country.