Friday, October 9, 2009

The Island is Getting Crowded

It's comforting to know I'm not the only one that believes The Shack is dangerous tripe. Below is a letter to the editor from Rev. Terry Forke as published in the August 2009 issue of The Lutheran Witness. I'd enjoy hearing a rebuttal that doesn't sacrifice the inerrancy of Scripture or disregard The Great Commission.

"I am very thankful that Rev. Borst spent hours discussing The Shack with his members and did not leave them without guidance (May Lutheran Witness). This is a healthy pastoral response to such a popular book.

However, I am very concerned that he has underestimated the negative impact this book will have on believers and unbelievers alike. In that regard I have four, admittedly lengthy, questions.

What percentage of the readers of The Shack will allow themselves to be guided in their understanding of it by faithful pastors who are trained to discern the heresies that are contained in the book and acknowledged by Rev. Borst?

What percentage of its reader swill put down the book believing the following heresies? God goes by different names in different religions but is the same god (pp. 31and 181). The Bible is a means for the “intelligentsia” of the church to maintain control of people’s access to God (p. 65). That God does not punish sin (p. 119), nor does He want us to be sorry for it, nor does He want to forgive us for it (pp. 184and 206). God did not create the authority of parents, government,and the Church for the sake of order in the world; they are only means for people to maintain control of others (p. 179). The Scriptures are not necessary because the Holy Spirit prefers to speak directly to us (pp. 195 and 198). The primary function of Jesus is to demonstrate God’s willingness to interact with humans. His death and resurrection for our justification is not what is most important (entire book).

What would be the spiritual state of those who believe these heresies?

What percentage of its readers who end up in that state is acceptable in order for us to back this as a modern novel worthy of consideration?

Call me a hack if you will, but I would prefer to attack a book that, in my estimation, will lead the majority of its readers away from Jesus as the only means of salvation.

Rev. Terry Forke
Billings, Mont.


Jessica said...

I haven't read The Shack, nor do I want to, but I just read a beautiful book by Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith. It's about faith, not religion, but faith. Albom writes about his elderly Jewish rabbi, who asks him to write his eulogy, and a Christian pastor in Detroit, who is a reformed drug dealer and ex-convict. Maybe the two worlds aren't so different after all. You might like it.

JBrandt said...

Faith and not religion? The kamikaze pilots had great faith and no Savior. Jewish Rabbis don't believe Christ is the son of God/Savior of the world who will come for a second time. Albom is a liberal and a good writer who blurs faith and religion. I hacked my way through Tuesdays with Morrie. A sentimental, if not maudlin, book about a mentor Albom idolized. In that book it was clear he did not believe Jesus Christ is the only way to salvation. My prayer for Albom, after reading that book, is that he comes to understand Christ is the only way to heaven. There are not ways, only one way. John 3:16.

Jessica said...

I know the two religions are completely different, but in the book the two religious men have great faith in God. The book does not preach one religion is better than the other, but it talks about both men having great faith in his God. At least we agree that Albom is a good writer. =) I'm just saying...check it out, then judge. Maybe the pastor will eventually win Albom over to the Christianity side, we can only hope, but I doubt it. =)