John Shelby Spong was the Episcopal Bishop of Newark for 24 years before his retirement in 2000. In his bestseller Why Christianity Must Change or Die (1999), he spoke to religious seekers around the world who "yearn to believe in God but are also repelled by the premodern literalizations that so frequently masquerade as Christianity." In A New Christianity for a New World (2002), he offered a vision of an inclusive, open-minded church. In this bold work, Spong calls himself a Bishop Speaking to Believers in Exile. We stand beside him and all who thirst for a church that is not fearful of inquiry, freedom, and knowledge.
Unbelievable comes across as a hard-hitting critique of traditional Christianity and as a final attempt by Spong to convince believers to explore their beliefs in new and poignant ways. Taking a cue from Martin Luther and the launch of the Protestant Reformation, the author hammers to the wall 12 theses which will enable today's Christians to reshape and renew their faith by doing radical deeds.
Among the tools for moving beyond creedal theology are reverencing the God of Mystery, dealing with the collapse of the salvation story, finding the basis for ethics, driving prayer toward a new understanding, proposing a new perspective on eternity, and working out a spiritually hospitable and mature universalism.