That is an excerpt from Mohler’s latest blog dealing with Bishop John Shelby Spong. Spong has recently flown to Australia only to be denied access to the pulpits under the authority of Archbishop Peter Jensen, who oversees the Sydney diocese! Sadly, Australia’s Anglican Primate Phillip Aspinall of Brisbane has invited him to speak two sermons in Brisbane’s St John’s Cathedral.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Spong and his venom-laced bile, go here, here, and here. I encourage you to read through a few of the articles you may find. In my opinion, Spong is one of the first architects of many of the foundational rhetorical tricks one finds in emerging circles. He manages to question central Christian doctrines by means of ad hominum attacks on Sola Scriptura, Sola Christo “conservative” Christians (such as myself) who have allegedly ruined Christianity.
Nowadays, Rob “discovering the Bible as a human product” Bell, N.T. “the ultimate enemy, death itself” Wright, and Brian “disagreeing agreeably (about sin)” Mclaren have managed to position themselves much more successfully within Evangelical circles, while making similar and, perhaps, more subtle distortions of Scripture. These men often take the clearest possible statements from the Bible and convolute them, all the while making you feel guilty because it seemed pretty simple to you when you first read it.
It’s not that all Scripture can be understood simplistically; it’s that the basic truths of Scripture are clear merely by reading it and understanding it within its own context. You don’t have to have to be a scholar of Jewish culture, church history, or postmodernism in order to know the most important things in this life: you just need to see, “that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.” (2 Peter 1:3) If you want to learn that, be a humble student of the Word of God.
Deal bountifully with Your servant, that I may live and keep Your word.
Open my eyes, that I may behold wonderful things from Your law.
I am a stranger in the earth; do not hide Your commandments from me.
My soul is crushed with longing after Your ordinances at all times.
You rebuke the arrogant, the cursed, who wander from Your commandments.
Take away reproach and contempt from me, for I observe Your testimonies.
Even though princes sit and talk against me, Your servant meditates on Your statutes.
Your testimonies also are my delight; they are my counselors.