Peter Carrell reads Gene Robinson and Worries He sees the Influence of John Spong

From Gene Robinson:

This column will also go far beyond Christianity. God is infinite, and it comes as no surprise to me that there have developed, over time, many credible and faithful approaches to understanding God. In the end, no religion holds a lock on the reality of God. Each religion grasps only a part of the infinite God and offers insight into God’s reality, and we would do well to exercise a good measure of humility in claiming we know God’s will. Better to begin each pronouncement we make about God with “In my experience”¦” or “From my perspective”¦” or simply “For me”¦.” At the end of the day, no matter how much we believe we know God’s will, we must acknowledge that each of us is only doing the best she/he can.”

Peter Carrell then responds:

Sounds like Spong. But it is not. More like ‘channelling Spong.’ The author is a bishop of an Anglican church. To that Anglican church the Diocese of South Carolina once belonged. Here is a useful illustration of why that Diocese has said Enough is enough. A bishop, intended within Anglican polity to be a teacher of the faith, belittles his own religion and its claim to have received the fullness of God’s revelation in Jesus Christ by declaring ‘Each religion grasps only a part of the infinite God.’ Further, as a bishop authorised by the church to proclaim the Word of God, the best he can do is boil down all proclamation of God’s truth to ‘In my experience.’

This is not Christianity. Nor is it Anglicanism as a manner of being Christian which is both catholic and reformed.

Read it all inclusive of the link and comments.


Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Christology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Religion & Culture, TEC Bishops, The Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Theology, Theology: Scripture

8 comments on “Peter Carrell reads Gene Robinson and Worries He sees the Influence of John Spong

  1. dmitri says:

    And would the real Anglican and truly reformed all say: “God is Finite. Our religion has a complete lock on the Reality of God. We grasp ALL of God. We have no humility in claiming we know God’s will PERFECTLY. We are NOT just doing the best we can– we are doing exactly what God would do if he were us.” ???

  2. driver8 says:

    He, he – anyone remember Bishop Robinson in his “I am wildly conservative” days? But that was so 2010.

    Within the unctious humility is a vast claim to be able to see the truth from a vantage point that somehow encompasses all humanity’s spiritual quests. The surface claim looks like a sort of epistemological humility (no privileged path up the mountain) but underneath, the underlying argument claims to know more and see further than the parochial and particular perspectives of ordinary mortals. And of course the genial relativism with which this faces the world and its sotto voce synthesis into some sort of non-relativistic unity (God is Infinite etc.) makes truth claims that are just as strong as any particular faith.

  3. Ralph says:

    A careful reading of Jack Spong suggests that he is “channeling” the works of liberal scholars from the Age of Enlightenment on, and doing so uncritically. I haven’t read Gene Robinson carefully, but have suspected much the same.

    Every now and then, a liberal scholar (e.g., Bultmann) will write something that actually makes you stop, think, reflect, and pray.

    Bp Spong has written a lot, but I don’t recall reading one of his original thoughts or fresh insights.

  4. mannainthewilderness says:

    The comment thread after the post was certainly illuminating . . .

  5. Ad Orientem says:

    They are both apostates. Everything beyond that is just details.

  6. Br. Michael says:

    As he so often does Ad Orientem sums it up nicely.

  7. Sarah says:

    One of the interesting things about this post is that Bishop Robinson has been a bishop for 10 years. About 4/5 of our House of Bishops believes happily in performing faux rites of “marriage” for two men or two women engaging in a sexual relationship.

    It’s just bizarre to me that only now somebody wonders if Gene Robinson is “influenced” by Jack Spong. Good heavens — [i]of course he’s been “influenced” by Jack Spong.[/i] He doesn’t believe the Gospel.

    I continue to see various clergy and bishops act as if somehow the notion that other bishops and clergy have decided that they’re going to pronounce God’s favor and blessing on two men who enjoy sexual relationships [i]doesn’t have any connection to their actual foundational theological beliefs or faith.[/i] But deciding that they’re going to pronounce God’s blessing on intrinsically immoral acts is but the tip of a long-formed iceberg in their belief-set. You don’t get there from an actual love for and belief in the Christian theology of Scripture, tradition, reason, the sacraments, authority, the nature of man, sin, the Fall, repentance, the nature of salvation and sanctification, the Church, and marriage. By the time one wakes up one morning and decides to pronounce God’s blessing on the sexual relationship between two men or two women, the foundation is so rotten and crumbling that it is no longer a recognizable Christian Gospel or Christian faith at all.

    [i]You don’t get there from the Christian faith or Gospel at all.[/i]

  8. MichaelA says:

    You’re being divisive again Sarah.