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Sponged

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  • Robert G. Knight
    Mr. Spong sure has been getting a lot of attention on and off line. Just this week my theo prof remarked how John Robinson wrote the same as Spong but much
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 28, 2000
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      Mr. Spong sure has been getting a lot of attention on and off line. Just
      this week my theo prof remarked how John Robinson wrote the same as Spong
      but much more interesting and original. There's nothing like writing a book
      to bring you a certain notoriety. :-)

      I read "Resurrection: Myth or Reality" before I began my university studies
      and had another look at it today. In one of my readings I recall Raymond E.
      Brown taking exception to Spong's claim that out of the disciple's need to
      bring meaning to the apparent failure of Jesus' mission made up the
      resurrection account to compensate and move them forward. I would have to
      agree with Brown, this explanation seems too contrived and about as vague
      as I find Crossan's.

      But speaking of being vague, in a note of humility Bishop Spong does say
      that after a lifetime of wanting to write a book on life after death
      including 5 years of intense research decided not to because, "I still do
      not know what to say or how to express my convictions on this subject except
      with a consuming vagueness." For me this shows that he is not just writing
      for a popular audience, he could have had another top-seller like theologian
      Tom Harpur did with his book on life after death but choose not too.

      Personally I find the book even at this time scholarly, much more then "The
      Jesus Mysteries" by Freke/Gandy. Both have an extensive bibliography,
      however Spong writes with greater insight into the scriptures and
      Jewish/Greek tradition. I think this puts him into an area beyond the
      "popular press." Besides if being popular is a criteria of scholarship then
      where does one put Crossan who can be a difficult read but whose books fly
      off the shelf anyway?

      Robert G. Knight
      London, Ontario
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