Thursday Book Review – The Shack

This is going to be the first in a few weeks worth of Thursday Book Reviews where I list a book not to read. The Shack is the first book in this list, I’m going to give links to brother Justin Peters, and brother Voodie Bauchmans review of the book. 

There’s not much I can add to their wise words, I just felt the need to warn about it. This book is filled with heretical universalism. I would only recommend you read this book if you are interested in learning more about universalism. 


I know there are a lot of people who will say that this book is helpful for those that are grieving.  Beloved brethren there are better ways to heal a grieving heart than to read heresy. Please don’t be fooled by this book, it is theology, bad theology. 

Why is this so important to point out? Because if you put your faith in an idol, a false god you craft after your own image, then you’re dead in your sins. Books like The Shack show the idols created by authors when the sovereignty of God was too much for them. A false god can not save. A god made in your own image can not save. The Shack, and books like it, are leading millions astray. 

Beloved, please don’t take this lightly. Is it a light thing to blaspheme the King of kings and the Lord of lords? I pray for you all, always bringing your names before Gods mighty throne, have courage brethren. As always dear ones, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved. 

Author: lnhereford

I am a Christian, wife, mother, podcaster and homeschooler currently traveling the United States with my loving husband and darling daughter!

18 thoughts on “Thursday Book Review – The Shack”

  1. Sister, thanks for pointing out the dangers of “The Shack.” This was a hot button issue for many believers who saw any criticism of the book and film as fascist book burning. While I was not a fan of how the Trinity was depicted in this story, the most troubling aspect was that it promoted universal redemption, as you point out. Fans said, relax, it’s just a novel. That’s right, but it’s a novel that promotes a distinct theology that is contrary to Scripture and this work found a very receptive audience within evangelicalism. Author William Paul Young makes no excuses for promoting his personal belief in universalism via “The Shack.” The fact that this story was defended so passionately by so many within evangelicalism says a lot about the state of the church these days. Pastors wouldn’t criticize it for fear they it would alienate all the Shackites in their congregations.
    https://www.thebereancall.org/content/august-2009-extra-review-of-the-shack

    Liked by 3 people

  2. That is an excellent article, brother! I love how he made the point that the fiction serves the theology, and that giving people a false way to God leads to false conversion. I’m not surprised that sinners love this book, they hate the true God and will willingly follow any false idol that doesn’t condemn their sin. They don’t want to hear about the God who is angry at their sins everyday. What grieves me the most is the Christian community that accepted it. Like when liberalism first entered the congregations, a small amount rejected it and separated from it, a small amount supported it and pushed it, the masses ignored it. Now most of those mainline churches are liberal in their theology. We see the fruit of many good, genuine, believers who cared more about keeping the peace then ousting the wolves. I’m afraid this is what’s happening now with universalism. It’s being pushed by some, rejected by some, and ignored by most. If this generation does not make a clear stand against it, the next generation will embrace it. If the Lord tarries, our children and grand children will have churches full of liberal, ecumenically led, universalists. The blind leading the blind into judgement. Or maybe universalism already fought that battle and won? And The Shack is the fruit? It certainly fits in beautifully with liberalism and ecumenicism.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You make a good “bottom line” observation regarding this “controversy.” This book would have been aggressively attacked by “mainstream” evangelicalism fifty years ago. Today, it’s either endorsed or silently unopposed. I was shocked by some of the Christians I know personally who embraced this book.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I totally agree with your observations on The Shack.
    I read the book because of Pastor I greatly admire had listed it as one of his favorites when it was first released.
    The book has a very strong emotional appeal that overwhelms the lack of scriptural accuracy. I will admit when I read it I was so overtaken with the emotional part having dealt with recent deaths in my family that it was not until later I realized there was something not jusr wrong but extremely dangerous about it.
    I tried watching the movie to validate my original feelings but it was even more obvious in the movie.
    My takeaway from this is to not get so caught up in the emotion that you overlooked scriptural and spiritual inaccuracies.
    This would also apply in several areas I could think of in our modern-day church and theology
    Thanks for reading my blog and following

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, brother, for your honesty and your words of encouragement. I think you’ve hit on something important, the emotional appeal. There must be something lacking in our leaderships ability to console those dealing with loss, or perhaps it’s the general desire not to teach on anything negative. Death, in most contexts, seems to be a negative in our culture. However, after reading a great deal of the early church fathers, and Foxes book of Martyrs I see that this was not always the case. There was a time when to be absent from the body was to be present before the Lord, and that was preferred.

      When my grandmother died I couldn’t find it in my heart to cry. I miss her dearly, we were very close, but she was a faithful believer. I know where she is, her funeral felt more like a wedding to me. She was with her bridegroom. That was the place she had so longed to be.
      I think we have this window of opportunity with the lost, when the mortality they ignore is front in center, to give them the Gospel. The Shack takes the place of that in a dangerous way. Thank you again, brother, and God bless you!

      Like

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