Resurrection: A Reality or a Pious Dream, Part VIII: Luke – Mystery Recedes – Literalism Grows

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on June, 18 2015

When we come to Luke, the third gospel writer and, counting Paul, the fourth biblical witness to the meaning of Easter, we discover a dramatic shift in the language …

Resurrection: A Reality or A Pious Dream? Part VI: Matthew’s Story of the Galilean Appearances

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on June, 4 2015

Mark’s messenger of the resurrection, described in that gospel as “a young man in a white robe,” had promised a future appearance of the raised Christ to the …

Resurrection – A Reality or a Pious Dream? Part III The Witness of Paul, Continued

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on May, 7 2015

After Easter we opened a new unit of columns designed to study exactly what the Bible says about Jesus’ resurrection. We noted that while resurrection is assumed in every …

Part XLVII Matthew: The Meaning of the Passion opens into the Meaning of Resurrection

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on April, 9 2015

The drama of the cross races towards its conclusion. It is a story that runs counter to the cultural expectations. Shaped by the “Servant” figure, drawn from II Isaiah, …

Part XL Matthew – The Passion Narrative Begins

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on February, 12 2015

It is a familiar story. It has been burned into the collective consciousness of the Christian world over the centuries. Many of its elements have long since left their …

Part XXXVIII Matthew – The First Confirmation Class

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on January, 22 2015

Most people are not aware that Judaism, at the time of Jesus, had become a missionary, conversion-oriented religion. People all over the Roman Empire were finding their way into …

Part XXXVII Matthew – The Impact of Deuteronomy on the Journey of Jesus to Jerusalem

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on January, 15 2015

When the Transfiguration experience was over, Matthew tells us that Jesus and his disciples came down from that mountain. It had been a transformative experience for the disciples, Matthew …

Part XXXIV Matthew – The Transfiguration of Jesus, Part III

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on November, 6 2014

A Dedication-Hanukkah Story

How many of you have ever connected the story of Jesus’ transfiguration with the Jewish celebration of Dedication/Hanukkah? We may well have imagined …

Part XXXIII Matthew – Watching the Traditions of “Dedication/Hanukkah” Develop

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on October, 30 2014

Last week we traced the origins of the Jewish festival known as “Dedication,” but in our day popularly called “Hanukkah.”. It celebrated the moment when a guerilla army of …