Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Review of "The Shack"

I figured since everybody is talking about this book lately I would go ahead and read it. To start off I think what is good about the book is that it does an excellent job of explaining free will in narative form. It tells the story of a man who had his 6 year old daughter abducted and murdered while on a camping trip. Several years later God invites him to come up to the same shack in the woods where the daughters bloodstained dress was found, for a conversation. Some of the topics discussed and exemplified were God's love, forgiveness, and relationship. What I find appaling about the book is its omission on the topic of eternal punishment. I am left with the impression that the books author is either blatently or unwittingly expousing universal salvation. Since it is nearly impossible to speak on the topic of the fate of those who do violence to young people without bringing up the idea of hell, I am pretty sure that the book is subtly yet blatently pro-universalism. The reason for the subtlety is obvious. The doctrine cannot survive scrutiny against the Word of God. While I like the book I could not recommend it for reading to anyone since it is impossible to say what other subtle false doctrines might also be lurking in the subtext of the book that I was not wise enough to pick up on.