Nine or ten years ago I discovered a book at Sam’s that looked intriguing; so I bought it. I enjoyed it so much that I bought two more copies and mailed them off to Deidre and another friend. That book – The Shack – has been made into a major motion picture that was released last week (Mar. 3) amidst much fanfare and furor. Many people are excited to see the unique characters William P. Young created brought to life on the big screen, but others are warning that this story misrepresents God and could lead people astray. Where do the “Voices” stand?
While we realize that this story (the book) had moments that captivated the readers with the reality of God’s love, it also had important theological issues that could confuse or mislead. There is a difference between a fictional story and the truth of the Bible. While it may be comforting to observe the closeness of the trinity within the confines of someone’s imagination, the reality of the hierarchy of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, can only be found in God’s Word.
The Shack is a book that stirs our emotions. We agree with Tim Challies when he states in his review, “because of the emotional impact of reading good fiction, it can be easy to allow it to become manipulative and to allow the emotion of a moment to bypass our ability to discern what is true and what is not. This is another thing the reader must keep in mind. We cannot trust our laughter or our tears but must allow our powers of discernment to be trained to distinguish good from evil (see Hebrews 5:14). Discernment is primarily a Spirit empowered discipline of the mind rather than an emotional response.” (www.challies.com)
So while we plan to enjoy the movie version of this book, we dare not forget to draw a line between the emotion of the story and the truth of the Bible. We encourage you to do the same. God bless.
Sue and Deidre