Last evening my wife and I and a few students drove to downtown Orlando to hear Dr. James White debate bishop John Shelby Spong. By the way, Spong also debated the late Walter Martin some years ago. It appears that his arguments have not changed since the last time, except he has published a few more books since then. Debates like last night prove why it is inconceivable to avoid presuppositionalism. In fact, even the bishop (as opposed to an Orthodox BISHOP) himself admitted that both of them were starting from different perspectives/worldviews. This was evident from beginning to end. White’s worldview accounted for a direct revelation of God to man, whereby man can KNOW the will of God and what is right and wrong. On the other hand, Spong assumed from the beginning that the Word of God is not the word from God nor His divine special revelation. With this assumption, Paul was a homosexual who struggled deeply with his flesh and all accounts that condemned homsexuality were written by oppressive Christians.
As for the debate itself, Spong was unable to keep to the format which was rather frustrating for those who were interested in hearing an intellectual exchange. However, Spong was unaware that when you are asked to ask questions you are supposed to cross-examine your opponent. Rather, he took his time to elaborate on absurd scientific theories as to why the Bible cannot be trusted.
I have little to say about Dr. White. He portrayed himself well and made salient points throughout the debate. He defended unashamedly the Biblical perspective and affirmed the authority of God’s Word. If God has spoken, he argued, we can know what He says and expects from His creatures. At other times James was visibly perturbed by Spong’s unbelievable inability to affirm the simplest of truths. He stressed several times that the church is accepting of all those who would repent. Of course, to this Spong repeated ad nauseum that he should avoid being so judgmental.
What is our response? Heretics like Spong are far from the truth; so far in fact that there is no return (Hebrews 6). His blasphemies and absolute denial of the God of Holy Writ and the true apostolic and catholic Church condemns him. His condemnation in fact is greater, because knowing the truth he has denied it. And to him God says, CURSED!