Friday, November 27, 2009

Why Christians should not read 'The Shack'

I’ve posted before about the heresies in The Shack here, and here. Today I’d like to discuss The Shack in terms of the End Time.

In order to seek His face, and to stay on His path, Christians should always ask these questions in daily life,
--“Does what I am thinking glorify Jesus?”
--“Does what I am saying glorify Jesus?”
--“Does what I am doing glorify Jesus?”

These are questions we ask all the time, end time or not. We have to, Christian life is hard. We are told in John 16:33 that the Christian life is hard and it's easy to stray. We face mocking, (Isaiah 28:15; Isaiah 28:22; 2 Peter 3:3) persecution, trials and tribulations. (1 Peter 4:12-13, 2 Corinthians 11:24-26). Because of our enemies, we have to do all we can to stay on the straight path and not stray. (Psalm 27:11) We struggle against the supernatural realms, all the powers, principalities, and powers of darkness, so much so that we are given spiritual armor to wear in the battle. (Ephesians 6:12). It’s war, you know, and the enemy sets mines.

Enter the end time, a ramped up period of increased everything. Add to the war we are already in, increased deception, apostasy, and false doctrine. (Matthew 24:11) We are told that in the end time men will not put up with sound doctrine, instead, they’ll seek doctrines that tickle the ears and match their own thoughts and desires. (2Tim 4:3). We are warned that men will be godless, susceptible, hypocritical liars teaching false doctrine sent by deceiving demons (1 Tim 4:1-3). There will be destructive heresies secretly introduced even denying the sovereignty of the LORD; and false teachers (2 Peter 2:1). Even the elect will not be immune to deception (Matthew 24:24; Mark 13:22).

The Lord was good and kind to tell us, warn us, and equip us. Now comes The Shack, a heartwarming, innocuous- looking book that makes readers across the world feel good. They feel good about Jesus. They feel good about God. They feel good because they released from the strict doctrine they hated all along. How? The Shack tells its readers that Jesus is not the only way to heaven, but the best way. The Shack tells its readers that church is old fashioned and the bible is dusty. The Shack tells readers that there is no such a thing as eternal judgment or torment in hell. The Shack tells readers God will never judge people for their sins. (If that is so, then Jesus died for NOTHING!) Even one of those principles in The Shack should be enough to stop a Christain from spending God-given time reading it.

When you read a book like The Shack, or if you consider recommending it to someone, ask yourself the three questions as usual: does what I am thinking, saying, or doing glorify God? And add this one: at the Bema Seat, when I face Jesus, will he accept my excuses for having read or recommended The Shack? The time I used in reading heresy I could have spent in Godly pursuits instead, will that be pleasing to Him?

In light of all the end-time warnings we are given, why spend even a moment spending time in an activity that denies Jesus' sacrifice for sin? Why risk it? Are we smarter than the bible? No. Mark Driscoll said “doctrine is essential, like a fence the Almighty erects to safeguard the saved from error.” Straying from that fence exposes us to the wolves we were promised would appear (Matthew 7:15) and makes us vulnerable to the prowling lion seeking to devour us. (1 Peter 5:8) If you were inside a fence and actually saw the wolves and the lion out there, would you wander out? Of course not. Just because the powers and principalities are invisible does not mean they are not there. We are told they are, and if you have faith in Jesus’ swords then you believe that. Don’t stray outside of the fence of solid doctrine! Especially not in these end times when we’ve been warned the risk is all the greater!

There is no label on The Shack that says, “Warning, heresy inside!” The destructive heresies that will come in The End Time are introduced “secretly” meaning, slyly, in a sweet package like The Shack. Christian, don’t go over the fence where the lion prowls, and the wolves wait. Frankly, none of us is smarter than the bible, and the bible warned us we are at risk from false doctrines in the end time. O, why displease the merciful God who saved you from the pit of eternal hell by putting in your mind the notion that His Son died for nothing?

“I took the little book out of the angel's hand and ate it, and in my mouth it was sweet as honey; and when I had eaten it, my stomach was made bitter.” Rev 10:10


  1. As one exposed to the christian doctrine, i find no joy in saying you are like an elephant chained to a tree except that the chain around your neck is invisible.
    You are probably unaware, and too blind to see, that you share similar spirit with a suicide bomber. The suicide bomber is adding hate to the equation but sees it as doing it for god.
    You have completely missed the gospel of Christ because you couldn't comprehend the symbolical language of the bible

    1. I agree, why not let people read this book and decide for themselves if there is a message to take from it. if u read this book and take it literally, then u have clearly missed the message. I feel that this book has such wonderful things to offer for Christians as well as agnostics!

    2. False teaching never has anything good to offer anyone. The book presents a dishonoring view of God and offers poison wrapped inside a sugar coating. Don't fall for it. Above all, we should exalt Jesus by staying away from the sweetness the devil offers which turns bitter later.

  2. Um...OK. So assuming you comprehend the symbolical language of the bible, what IS the gospel of Christ in your understanding?

  3. yea, I disagree. Read it and loved it and read my bible and love that too. As any book outside the bible, the shack paints a perception of how God touched a man paralyzed by the pain of losing his daughter tragically by a serial killer. Nothing that man ever writes about God will ever be perfect as God's word as expressed in the bible. However, I have shared the Shack with my aunt who I live with who is a starch athiest and she is now interested in reading the bible and she never ever had an interest in that while attending churches all her life. God can use man's imperfections for His Glory. Praise God for that!!!

  4. I agree with you, nothing man writes will be as good as God expresses Himself in the bible. It's one thing to write about Him clumsily, as man is wont to do. It's quite another to *change* what He said. I love my bible too, that's why I love any book that honors God and hate any book that dishonors Him. That is what my bible teaches me.

    I'm glad for your Aunt and fearful too. The "god" she met in The Shack is not the One she will read in the bible. Being the end time and people liking ears tickled, when she comes across God of the bible who punishes sin and exhibits wrath, she is highly at-risk for putting Him away in favor of the false god of the Shack who loves everyone and never punishes anyone and accepts any path to get to him. The God of the Shack is all candy and flowers. The God of the bible is perfect in His justice and unabashed about carrying it out. Uh-oh. The twain just don't meet. I won't risk it, because I want my relatives to wind up in heaven, the heaven of the bible, not the false heaven (hell) of the god of The Shack.

  5. Elizabeth, your postings are well written, hermeneutically (sp?) correct and a real source of encouragement for me (and many I am sure). Keep up the good fight. Trusting you had a filling Thanksgiving and may you experience many blessings in the coming Christmas season and always. I look forward to your writings every day.

    In Christ - a follower in New England

  6. Anonymous, thank you so much for the encouraging words. It helps so much to hear a kind word occasionally. I thank the Holy Spirit for the work, Who inspires me with the ideas you see here and envelops me in Himself as I write. Without Him I can do nothing.

  7. When I'v told a few Christians that they shouldn't be reading this book, they have said that if they want to read or not read this book - it's their business.

  8. How does one know until they read it? I agree that if a Jesus follower reads it and feels it is consists of heresy, that person should not recommend it to others. I agree that the said reader should give an honest heartfelt opinion when asked. I do not believe that anyone should read it and then make others feel they are horrible if they make that same choice.

    1. Justin Peters Q & A on The Shack, 2:40 min


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