Bachelor, University Richmond, 1953. Bachelor's Degree, Southern Baptist Seminary, 1956. Master of Arts, Princeton University, New Jersey, 1960.
Doctor of Philosophy, Princeton University, New Jersey, 1962.
Assistant professor religion, William Jewell College, Liberty, Missouri, 1961-1963; with, U. Richmond, since 1963; professor, chairman religion Department, University Richmond, 1973-1978; professor humanities, chairman area studies Department, University Richmond, since 1978. Visiting professor rhetoric and communications University of Virginia, Charlottesville, 1986,89.
Organizer Richmond chapter American Civil Liberties Union, 1965. Member Henrico County Democratic Committee, Richmond, 1965-1966. Treasurer Virginians for McCarthy, Richmond, 1968.
Board of directors James Madison Memorial Committee, Buffalo, since 1985. Member of national advisory board Americans United for Separation of Church and State. Member Committee for Science Study of Religion (board directors since 1985), Religion and Biblical Criticism Research Project (steering committee since 1985).
Married Norma Franklin Crane, August 17, 1957. Children: Robert Sutherland Junior, John Reuben.