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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Burning Down The Shack by James B. De Young

Finally, a book that provides proof of the unbiblical statements and ideas of the popular book, "The Shack", by William P. Young. It is utterly frightening how many people, including pastors, have been deceived by "The Shack". The god of "The Shack" is NOT the God of the Bible. People who claim that "The Shack" brought them closer to God are being misdirected and decieved into believing in a false god.

"Burning Down the Shack" compares the concepts and ideas of "The Shack" with the Bible. The author provides references to the Bible so you can you can verify every false idea and statement. "Burning Down the Shack" is not confrontational - it is simply an analysis that is backed by the Bible. It is a must read for everyone who has read "The Shack".

While "The Shack" is a fictional work, it is clearly not being regarded as fiction. MANY people claim "The Shack" brought them closer to God, and this demonstrates "The Shack" is not simply being read as fiction. Quite honestly, even as a fictional book, "The Shack" is offensive to God, the Bible, and Christianity. I cannot stress enough that "Burning Down the Shack" is a must read book. The first few pages alone provides plenty of evidence of the many unbiblical statements, concepts and ideas that "The Shack" contains.

The author, James B. De Young, is professor of New Testament Language and Literature at Western Seminary, Portland, OR, where he has taught for thirty-four years.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Bonhoeffer Paster, Martyr, Prohpet, Spy by Eric Metaxas

This is a very inspirational biography about Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Bonhoeffer was a serious, committed Christian, Pastor and Theologian. The book describes Bonhoeffer's complete life. The reader will receive a clear idea of the influences that brought Bonhoeffer to Theology and his battle against Hitler and the Nazis.

Bonhoeffer demonstrates what it is like to want to do the will of God at any cost; and to do it without regard for yourself. Bonhoeffer literally laid down his life so he could gain life, by strictly following the will of God. Moreover, Bonhoeffer demonstrates true commitment to God without fear or hesitation - even just before his execution for participating in the conspiracy to triumph over Hitler and the Nazis.

I was very impressed with the book because it covered Hitler, his rise to an evil dictator and the despicable/evil actions Hitler committed. It not only described Bonhoeffer's life, but demonstrated how being committed to doing God's will is and should be fearless. Bonhoeffer was not concerned with what others thought and stood up for what he thought was right and Christlike, whether it was against the Nazis or the the church in Germany. The book also details his research in the theological field, such as to answer questions on what it really means to be a Christian.

Highly enlightening and flows well. Easy to read and hard to put down!

Monday, July 19, 2010

"same kind of different As me" by Ron Hall & Denver Moore

"same kind of different as me" is an incredible true story where God united two different people to serve Him in the same ministry who are of completely different social and economic status, as well as race and completely different childhood and adulthood backgrounds - even coming from different states - one in Louisiana who ends up "relocating" to Texas in later adulthood. One is a high status White male (Ron Hall); the other is, in the his words, "becoming homeless was a step up for me" (Denver Moore, Black). They also became very close friends. It is apparent that God used Ron Hall's wife as His instrument to bring them together and together they have made a huge difference for the homeless.

This book is one of the most inspiring books demonstrating that God's people are not separated by race and status, etc. We can all come together to make the world a better place. Also, in the meantime, improving the lives of others. This book clearly illustrates race, status, and other factors do not create boundaries for those who are committed to God.

The book further illustrates that things happen according to God's timing, not ours. It demonstrates the problems people can have trying to befriend those of a different status, etc. In the end, it demonstrates it's not only possible to get beyond these problems, but God has a plan and can use people -not just individuals- to serve Him and help others in a BIG way!

This a book that is hard to put down. It is thorough with each author telling his story from childhood - all the way to how they met and beyond. It is incredible and I am the better for reading it. I highly recommend this book to everyone. To make a bigger difference in the world for God, we must cross barriers of race, status, even denominations. We are all God's people and that's all the matters.

I give it 5 stars. Read it and be moved. Be moved to take action and get involved in God's work.

P.S The title of this book is explained in the last chapter. It's thought provoking.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Friday, July 9, 2010

"The Shack"

"The Shack" by William P. Young is a fictional work that requires a great deal of discernment. After reading many reviews claiming this book brought them closer to God, I decided to read it. It is deplorable. It is an attack on Christianity.

"The Shack" while fiction, is sadly being read as nonfiction. Hardly anything can be further from the truth of the Bible. "The Shack" has "God" proclaiming the basics of Christianity as irrelevant and wrong. For example, "The Shack" claims that Jesus is the best way to the Father. According to the Bible and Christian beliefs, Jesus is the ONLY way to the Father. To claim Jesus is the best way (there are other ways) makes Jesus's death on the cross insignificant and trivial. After what Jesus suffered and endured - the torture, pain, humiliation and DEATH on the cross - to claim Jesus is the best way to the Father is unbiblical, unchristian and shameful.

"The Shack" claims "God" does not punish sin because sin is a punishment in of itself. "The Shack" implies there is no hell. "The Shack" demeans the awe and powers of God. In the Bible, people who encountered God immediately realized the greatness and awe of God. "The Shack" has its main character interacting with "God" as if God is just a buddy whom you can feel free to use foul language. Respect and awe for God is simply not illustrated in "The Shack". "The Shack" further attacks the greatness and power of God by claiming God cannot forgive someone who sinned against another until the person that he/she harmed has forgiven him/her. In other words, God does not have the power to forgive someone without human intervention. How far from the truth! - God is almighty powerful and does not need the help of mankind to fulfill His promises of forgiveness, salvation and eternal life.

Readers who claim "The Shack" brought them closer to God need to re-examine "The Shack" and the Bible. The god of "The Shack" is NOT the God of the Bible. It deeply saddens me to see how many have been deceived by "The Shack". Even churches and pastors have fallen prey to "The Shack". Satan has surely found a stronghold.

I had an debate with a pastor who was using "The Shack" as a way to show that someone so far from God can be reconciled with God. Yet, the god of "The Shack" is NOT the God of the Bible. Those who wish to study such a topic should turn to the Bible itself and discuss the Apostle Paul's life. In the Bible, you have a person who persecuted Christians and Jesus revealed Himself and asked, "why are you persecuting me?" This person in the Bible becomes such a disciple of God as to establish Churches and he wrote much of the New Testament.

Don't be deceived by "The Shack". Seek out a personal relationship with Jesus Christ through the Bible and prayer! It is absolutely impossible for "The Shack" to bring people closer to God.

"The Shack" claims Jesus is the best way to the Father. No, Jesus is the ONLY way to the Father. That element alone is in significant conflict with the Bible and Christian beliefs. It is unbiblical and should raise a red flag as to the ungodliness and evils of "The Shack".