Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Eve, an upcoming book by William P. Young of The Shack; The heresy continues


William P. Young is an author of religious stories. You might know him as the author of the runaway bestseller a few years ago, The Shack. (2008). He also wrote Cross Roads in 2012. Young said The Shack was fiction, nonetheless he used biblical theology to twist God's word and manipulated the "fictional narrative" to present a different Jesus, a different Holy Spirit, a different God, a different view of sin and a totally different view of the atonement. Young's book harmed Christians by insinuating Young's aberrant theology into their minds, all under the sensitively emotional flow of 'fiction.' You can read a substantive Christian review of The Shack here at Tim Challies' site.

In addition, I did some digging and discovered that Young channeled some of The Shack. Channeling is when an author turns off his mind, gives it over to a supernatural entity, and allows that entity to write the book for him. The writer is then simply a vessel used by an entity on the other side (a demon) speaking what the demon wants said. It is an occult practice that is surprisingly prevalent. One example is Beth Moore channeling "When Godly People do Ungodly Things." An ironic title when a supposedly godly person channels demons to teach about God.

Stay away from The Shack.

Unfortunately, Young is not finished with writing, and he has another book of religious fiction coming out. It's called "Eve". Read some of the promotional material describing the upcoming book Eve below-
Eve is a bold, unprecedented exploration of the Creation narrative, true to the original texts and centuries of scholarship—yet with breathtaking discoveries that challenge traditional misconceptions about who we are and how we’re made. As The Shack awakened readers to a personal, non-religious understanding of God, Eve will free us from faulty interpretations that have corrupted human relationships since the Garden of Eden.
I want you to double down and really think about what is being said here. This is a discernment lesson on how to resist language that is designed to get you to succumb to curiosity and read a heretical book. I am going to re-paste the same blurb from above with some words highlighted and then explain why they are highlighted.
Eve is a bold, unprecedented exploration of the Creation narrative, true to the original texts and centuries of scholarship—yet with breathtaking discoveries that challenge traditional misconceptions about who we are and how we’re made. As The Shack awakened readers to a personal, non-religious understanding of God, Eve will free us from faulty interpretations that have corrupted human relationships since the Garden of Eden.
Any time you read that someone has discovered a new way to interpret the biblical narrative, RUN. Key words are "unprecedented" and "breathtaking discoveries." How can a text be 'true to centuries of scholarship' yet yield discoveries no one else has ever noticed? Has the Holy Spirit hidden these new interpretations until now? From everyone except Young? No. Just think of the pride and hubris here. Everyone, just everyone has gotten it wrong about Eve, and Wm. Paul Young as he likes to sign himself, is the one man to find out the real interpretation.

"Challenge traditional misconceptions." 'Tradition' is a loaded word, used by bible twisters to paint Christianity, or the Bible, as irrelevant. It's another way to say what Young said in The Shack, subtly undermining Christianity, with using the word 'old', such as "the old seminary training wasn't helping" and "he half expected him to pull out a huge old King James Bible...". When a word is used like that enough times within the story, slowly the reader comes to accept the undermining. And again, the hubris and pride here is evident. We have all been shackled to misconceptions and "faulty interpretations", and William P. Young is going to "free" us. With a book. Of fiction.

You can have a pretty good idea what these so-called interpretations are that "have corrupted human relationships since the Garden of Eden." All this hyperbole makes it sound like it is another Bible, the book Eve is going to be that startling and powerful. But secondly, given the age of feminism, I am surmising that Young is going to throw out there an egalitarian view under cover of supposed scholarship coated in narrative and then when the blow-back comes coyly say, "It's just fiction..."

Here is more of the blurb seeming to affirm that indeed, feminism is on the table:
Eve opens a refreshing conversation about the equality of men and women within the context of our beginnings, helping us see each other as our Creator does—complete, unique, and not constrained to cultural rules or limitations.
In an interview, Young said of his new book,
Having said that, most of the existing assumptions we have of the Genesis story have been told from an either/or, and dominantly male, viewpoint rather than holistic and human, and I believe that has had a devastating impact on our view of God and our relationships, one with the other. This novel is not intended to add to the existing adversarial divisions but look for something deeper and truer about us as human beings that will bring freedom to us all.
The Genesis story has been told in God's point of view. If the Word is absent a response or perspective from Eve, that is because God arranged it that way. And yet it isn't absent. Both their answers to God's questioning were recorded. Both were - ahem - equally cursed for disobeying. It is not up to Young to re-frame it.

Secondly, there's that coyness again, dis ingenuousness, or outright lie. The book Eve IS intended to add to the existing adversarial divisions, because in another interview Young said he fully expects his 'evangelical friends' to be upset.

Thirdly, there is that hubris and pride again. Young is saying here that his interpretation of the Garden story of sin has found something truer (than the Bible?!) and will "free us all." Jesus freed us, not Young. His Word frees us, not Young's new interpretation of it. Wm. Paul Young is going to free us with his new interpretation? RUN.

Young says that for 40 years he has had questions regarding those moments in the Garden. Quite often the false teachers will seek to affirm their piety by placing a lengthy time frame on something. I've been studying for 10 years...I prayed for several hours...Beth Moore told a long story about her 21 days of fasting before coming to some sort of epiphany, which she then taught to the audience. Here, Young seeks to buttress his faulty scholarship by placing it within a long time frame because he seeks to give it substance.

I understand his fascination with that moment in the Garden that changed everything. I have read and re-read Genesis 1-3 many times. My favorite places to go in the Bible are the early part of Genesis and all of Revelation, tremendous bookends. There are many questions, some that can be illuminated by the Spirit with proper scholarship and consistent with traditional interpretations for the last 4000 years, and other questions that will not be answered this side of the veil, if ever. God put in His word what He knew would benefit us and what He wanted to put in there. So we wait, and if it still matters to us in heaven, we an ask there. It's part of submitting to the authority of God and of trusting Him

However, Young's questions are sad. He said he has for 40 years asked:

--What happened?
--Where did we all go wrong?
--What is it about us as human beings that can produce such great wonder and do such catastrophic damage?

Answers: "What happened" is contained in Genesis 1-3. Period. It is clear and beautiful and enough.
We "all went wrong" when we absorbed Adam's sin-nature. Biologically, generations subsequent to Adam and Eve changed when disobedience (sin) entered their heart and mind. Witness son of Adam, Cain, who killed his brother, failed to properly worship God, and backtalked Him. At the Fall of Man, God cursed the earth and prophesied about the pain and anguish Adam's rebellion will bring to all future generations. This is information that is presented clearly in Genesis 3. Anyone having trouble with it means they repudiate the corrupt nature of our biology and the fact that we are all born sinners. (Psalm 51:5, Psalm 14:3, Romans 3:12, Romans 5:12).

The reason some "humans produce great wonder" is that they are energized by the Holy Spirit to do such wonders. And remember, what seems a wonder to us is not a wonder if it is not done in Christ and for Christ. Anything done in the flesh is a filthy rag to God, even what seems a wonder to our innocent or ignorant eyes. (Isaiah 64:6). Others who remain in sin do "catastrophic" damage to each other and to our Holy God, as did Eve and Adam, because satan comes to steal, kill and destroy. That's what sin does. It is always a catastrophe. These are not difficult concepts.

Questions answered.

Now, I am not totally being flip when I say that. Young is a perfect example of the verse which warns that some are "always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth." (2 Timothy 3:7). For 40 years Young has been seeking answers to questions that are already answered in the Bible. He continues to ask them because he does not like the answers.

Some, like Young, "... devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies, which promote speculations rather than the stewardship from God that is by faith." (1 Timothy 1:4).

CONCLUSION

At some point, a Christian must come to a settled conviction about what they believe. It might seem pious to wonder about why it all went wrong for 40 years, but it actually betrays the heart of an unregenerate person. When one engages in endless speculations, one cannot witness to truth. If Young wondered for 40 years about the origin of sin and its effects, then he does not understand our need for a Savior from that sin. A person who doesn't understand why we need a Savior is not a Christian.

When I say we must come to a "settled conviction," I'm not talking about uninformed dogmatism. The Spirit's ministry is to make scripture clear. Ask Him to help you come to an informed, grace-filled conviction. Once you know what you believe and why, you can witness with power.

I am being tough on Young and advising you my dear sisters and brothers strongly about the language that Book Publishers are using to arouse curiosity regarding this book. Young himself said in an interview that he understands that many of his evangelical friends will be alarmed at the concepts in the book. Therefore Young said to "read first and ask questions later." That is exactly what the serpent got Eve to do! Eat first, ask questions later. Don't fall for it. Book promoters are good at whipping up curiosity. If you read "Eve", you will become frustrated and upset at the twisting going on, or you will succumb to the confusion that endless questions bring and begin to say "yes, maybe he has a point..."

You will also be shocked to see some of your favorite, previously solid bible teachers, friends, pastors, celebrities you admire, extol this book. Apostasy is growing. Like a magnet sweeping up iron filings, the attraction to apostasy is proving irresistible to many. Books like these naturally draw out the serpent's poison that is already in them. However it is still saddening and discomfiting when we hear and see comments from teachers and leaders we once thought of as discerning suddenly swerve and extol the left path, and not the right one.

It is all for the glory of God however. Whom He allows to be drawn to these false notions about Him and engage in unedifying things (Philippians 4:8) it is for the purpose of showing who the genuine Christians are. Bear fruit, stay the course, pray always, and exalt Jesus with your heart, mind, strength, tongue and heart. These things please our Sovereign. And that is what we are put on earth for.

Shorter Catechism-
Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?

A. Man's chief end is to glorify God, [a] and to enjoy him for ever. [b]

[a]. Ps. 86:9; Isa. 60:21; Rom. 11:36; I Cor. 6:20; 10:31; Rev. 4:11
[b]. Ps. 16:5-11; 144:15; Isa. 12:2; Luke 2:10; Phil. 4:4; Rev. 21:3-4

10 comments :

  1. "It's part of submitting to the authority of God and of trusting Him"

    And that right there sums up the heart of sinful mans rebellion to God. When you boil it all down, sinners do not want to submit to God. Sinners want to be in control, not have God in control. That is exactly what Young is doing with this book. Trying to find an alternative explanation for things instead of submitting, because HE wants to be the master of his reality.

    Excellent analysis. I heartily agree with everything you have said here. Thanks.

    Jennifer

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am a writer, and so I truly support artistic freedom of expression.

    Sometimes, that expression is just way too much . . . way too much.

    Not long ago on Facebook, someone had rendered a beautiful portrait of a lion--a nicely done, beautiful picture of the king of beasts. But the lion was eye-to-eye with a woman in a wedding dress, the woman casting an adoring look at the lion. Of course you can guess that the imagery was to portray King Jesus with his bride--us.

    But instead of coming across as a bold and beautiful metaphor of how much Jesus loves His church, i found it creepy. Someone even took the time to explain the metaphor to me. I replied that I still found it creepy,

    Sometimes, art happens. Sometimes, art is best left on the pallet or in the box.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Most frustrating to me, with all the hoopla in image-media about lions supposedly being these great graceful beings that often are intended to represent God himself, is that it is SIN and SATAN that are referred to as a "roaring lion, prowling around and seeking whom he may devour," and "crouching at the door, desiring to have you."

      Not God. Sure, Christ is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. But Facebook images seem to implicate that every time you see a lion, you're supposed to think "oh that's representing God." Nuh-uh.

      When anything is presented indiscriminately in such a fashion, I agree that that strikes me as creepy.

      Delete
  3. Thanks for letting me know about this new book which I will not read.
    I become further convinced that I was a false convert every time I read about some book that I once really liked (The Shack) and how clueless I was about the true gospel.
    Melissa

    ReplyDelete
  4. Isn't it interesting that "channeling" has the same effect as watching TV or being on the internet?
    Turning off your mind and giving it over to be controlled by a supernatural entity?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Interesting! Although the difference in channeling spirits is that the spirit actually invades the body and controls it to some extent. In Beth Moore's case she said she felt a force unparalleled take over and physically wrote it for her. The body is the actual channel through wiich the demon complets his work.

      As for television, Jerry Mander (his real name) wrote a very interesting book called "Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television". I liked his chapter on how TV affects our biology

      Delete
  5. BINGO
    "At some point, a Christian must come to a settled conviction about what they believe. It might seem pious to wonder about why it all went wrong for 40 years, but it actually betrays the heart of an unregenerate person."

    If the Holy Spirit will guide us in all truth, to claim that one is regenerated by the Holy Spirit and then not come to the knowledge of the truth for years and years is to declare that God is impotent/incompetent to ensure the proper education of His children.

    Since God certainly is by no means incompetent, to declare lifelong ignorance in the same breath as professing faith, is to do no more than to declare oneself to be a false convert, to proclaim that one lacks the illumination of the Holy Spirit, because one lacks the Holy Spirit.

    My sentence structure drifted toward the 1800s the more I kept writing, there. :D

    ReplyDelete
  6. What a comprehensive, insightful,and true article written about this book, Eve, and about its author. For a second there I thought I was reading a book review by Alistair Begg and I mean that as a compliment. I love how you back everything up with scripture and you explain it very clearly. I will keep this post in mind should I need to forward it to someone..
    Melissa, I used to think The Shack was a great book too. Whew! I am so grateful our Father opened my eyes.

    Diana

    ReplyDelete
  7. I had another thought to follow up. Brian MacLaren also makes a BIG deal of flaunting his super duper piety by questioning everything and saying we can't know for sure. I grabbed one of his 'a new kind of christianity' books in 2010 or 2011 and am content knowing that's one less that got into the hands of the people at the Episcopal church I happened to be inside (there was an unrelated event going on that had rented the space, I think).

    For me, it's incredibly insulting when someone else says, "I'm so ignorant, and therefore you have to be ignorant, too, and can't know anything, either!" Uh, no. You can be ignorant in your false piety but I actually do know a few things and your hasty generalization fallacy does nothing to change the truth.

    A show of piety should be a dead giveaway of falsehood. I've seen it in Greek Orthodox, I've seen it in Catholics, I've seen it in Hindus, and I've seen it in atheists. It ironically seems to be less pervasive among Jews (I suppose that's because whether they're orthodox or godless, they generally don't seem to care and prefer to keep their beliefs to themselves, rather than tell others what they think about them), but that's likely a statistical anomaly. There's not quite as many Jews as there are the other groups, after all.

    Promoting one's own piety/humility/ignorance is actually pride. Define pride as denying the truth about who you are. It generally takes the form of "I think more highly of myself than I ought," which is a lie, and thus profanes God, who is Truth. But some people try to get around that by making a big deal about how lowly they are. In reality, it's just another form of thinking highly of oneself, because they've decided that it's virtuous to be lowly, so they "think more lowly of oneself, so that they can think more highly of themselves for thinking more lowly of themselves than they ought." And cancel the similar units, and you're back to plain old pride. Congratulating oneself on one's virtue based on lying about and denying what is really true about your character.

    The falsely pious make a big deal of their own ignorance, thereby denying their own ability to know the truth; denying that they're smart enough to know better; hoping to avoid the charge of being without excuse. But their facade will fail.A

    Because "their folly will be made known to everyone," which I suppose is either all the discerning saints, now, or everyone ever, at the Judgment.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hi, thanks for the informative review. I have making a collection of reviews of the Wm. Paul Young's upcoming book. I included an except of your review. http://wp.me/p5mKzs-nm

    ReplyDelete