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Discussion Forum : General Topics : the "Shack" reviewed by Tim Challies

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Koheleth
Member



Joined: 2005/11/10
Posts: 530
NC

 Re:

Quote:

CJaKfOrEsT wrote:
(Oh, I'm gonna get some grief over this post...I can just smell it) :-)



No. At least hopefully no undue grief. ;-)

Permit me a couple of questions on your final paragraph.

Quote:
I am actually more concerned about the backlash against this book, based primarily on its popularity. What if God were to allow such a book to become popular, in order to offend our theological intellect? What if His target is the "Laodicean church", believing itself to be rich in its theology, having "progressed from milk to meat" (Heb 5:12-14)? What if His desire is that we leave "the principles of the doctrine of Christ..not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God", in order to "let us go on unto perfection" (Heb 6:1)?



Is backlash inherently wrong? I see the comments here focusing on bad theology more than popularity, which is presented as a noteable but lesser concern.

If "our theological intellect" is not in error, why would God offend it? Why would God use a questionable work of fiction before he would correct his people using Scripture? Or using teachers and prophets?

Finally, why would God use this book instead of Scripture to have Christians "go on to perfection"? I think the word of God plus a few aids for motivation and discipleship are enough.

 2008/12/25 7:37Profile
poet
Member



Joined: 2007/2/16
Posts: 231
Longview WA

 Re:

Reply to
CJaKfOrEsT:
Iron sharpens Iron. If IM wrong in my assessment may God grant me the grace to be humble enough as to allow someone to speak into my life as to make me more Christ Like. Lets keep in the spirit of Grace and humality, towards each other,
I hope I become someday a great communicator to be able to convey my thoughts in such a way as to not let anyone feel that they are being attacked or their intelligence being maligned.
So anyway here we go.

I am going to attach my paper here below, but I am not going to post all 50 statements which were actually 65 on one reading. Due to the fact, for every statement that I post someone could jump on every statement and I would have to defend each one, supporting every position.
I would suppose that even the prophets of old dealt with the same thing while trying to warn of the comming judgment of God.
I am not a very good writer, and my inflection on paper always comes across as harsh or unfeeling, or unloving, but I am a loving and feeling person who cares very much for people and I try to warn but often the messenger is shot in the process. in my case stabbed in the back... often. such is life though.

CJaKfOrEsT:
In all due respect, you are making assumptions to my statements, and comming to conclusions that I have not made; or--- I may not be communicating myself well enough to get my thoughts out correctly. If that be the case IM sorry, I'll try and get better at this blog stuff.
I never justify hurting a child and at the same time demanding respect from them.
The child who is mistreated will stand before God and give account for His or Her lack of respect toward their parents, and at the same time the parents will stand before God and give account also.. but The Shack is Humanist, and God is not a Humanist and doe's demand righteousness from us, and obedience from us, God is not just waiting to judge us, but judgment IS going to come to HIS adversary's,
we can philosophize away his judgment, but it is still comming, no matter our parental raising, or circumstances.
The word says the Lord chastens those he Loves.
The shack puts it in a way as to get us to agree with the fact that God doesnt gleefully wait to bring judgment down on the disobedient.
You dont have to be a theologian to know that God does and will, and If you are a child of God then you too will be chastened because he Loves us and wants us to be a bride without spot or blemish.
the shack wrongly portrays God on the whole chapters diatribe to how God deals with HIS children. titled "here come da judge"
Anyway here is my paper.

THE SHACK

After reading “The Shack” I have thought hard about what to really say about it.
I do have a lot to say but for the sake of time and effort on my part I will be as brief as possible, limiting my opinions to a basic opinion and then a limited number of theological points that I could not ignore or for that matter any Christ loving individual who contends for the faith would need to mention.
First, I found that the story in itself was gripping and a page turner.
You just wanted to know what was going to happen next.
To be honest who wouldn’t want to speak to God face to face, especially since someone like Mack had a lot of questions to ask.
The story was written in such a way as to draw you into the emotions of a parent losing a child and the situation was invented to make sure you couldn’t bring judgment on Mack for leaving his daughter alone at the picnic table; he was busy saving the life of another child.

His healing process in the book was good, especially his needing to forgive his daughters killer, and putting upon himself Christ’s nature in doing so. Yet it was threaded with things that aren’t good, like on page 227 God says. “Just say it out loud. “There is power in what my children declare.” What? Is he WOF?

Another good statement was found on page 97: “I am God. I am who I am. And unlike you, my wings can’t be clipped.”
Unfortunately this statement doesn’t hold true in the book, he makes a statement then proceeds to bring God down to a human level, of which I will give an example shortly.
During my reading of this book I found at my first attempt more than 50 statements that either misrepresent who God is, or misrepresent his word by twisting meanings of conceptual teachings found in the bible or even blatant lies about who God is, or His character and nature.
I am going to give my 5 top reasons why I believe that “The Shack” is a heretical book.

Reason #1. This will be pertaining to my previous statement about Page 97 stating God being who he is.
The statement is good, but then in the entirety of the book, God is represented other than he really is. For example: Chapter 11 titled “Here come Da Judge”
Mack is put through an emotional roller coaster, then ultimately we, by Paul Young’s writing prowess, on pages 162- 163 Mack is forced to choose two of his children that he must judge to hell, thus putting us in the same position concerning our own children, and in the place of God. Ultimately Mack refuses to do it, bringing home the point that of course he couldn’t, because he loves his children too much to do such a horrendous thing, and is willing to take their place thus implying that Jesus did the same for us. And causing us to assume the same for God that he loves us so much as to never send any of his children to hell. Thus bring God down to our level, and in another part of the book he implies that God limits himself, for whatever reason, but in a statement in the book Mack is told that God likes surprises, which is also a human trait not a God trait.


This emotional story gets your mind to misrepresent who God is and how the atonement is supposed to work. The Gospel is misrepresented in this story and how God feels about sin and judgment.
Psalm 50:21 these things you have done and I kept silent, you thought I was all together like you but I will rebuke you and set them in order before your eyes.

Reason #2. Page 169 God speaking “Mackenzie, judgment is not about destruction, but about setting things right.”
Why do I have a problem about this statement?, because in another statement in the book on pages 205-207 were forced to bring our minds to believe in a concept of expectations versus a relationship, changing who the God of the bible is, and what he requires of us.
On page 206 it states: “the idea behind expectations requires that someone does not know the future or outcome and is trying to control behavior to get the desired result. Humans try to control behavior largely through expectations. I know you and everything about you. Why would I have an expectation other than what I already know? That would be foolish. And beyond that, because I have no expectations, you never disappoint me”.
First, he is calling God a fool in this statement, because for example, God does know the future, and did have expectations for his people, King Saul’s example, was “God” not grieved about Saul, yet he already knew Saul’s disobedience would take place, and regretted making Saul King over Israel.
Was not God grieved about the human race and had Noah build an Ark, or grieved with Israel to the point to giving Moses the opportunity to become the father of the nations, of which Moses interceded for them. Does not God have requirements and expectations from all of us? Including his Son Jesus, who when after getting baptized God in a audible voice this is my son whom I am greatly pleased. How can God be pleased about something unless he had an expectation based on an act of obedience? Thus, the statement made to John the Baptist stating that he had to do this thing to fulfill the law.
Rule of first mention. Genesis 4:7 if you do well will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well sin lies at the door and its desire if for you but you should rule over it.
Notice that here the scripture is clear about expectations, yet in “The Shack” we’re forced to think of a God who knows everything which is true but apply it to expectations which is an incorrect thinking pattern.
The bible is full of IF’s would imply an expectation on God’s part from HIS servants.
Side note; God refers to himself as Mack’s servant. That is a big problem, read Isaiah 6 or consider the bema seat of Christ, who is serving who anyway?

Reason #3. Pages 118-120.
This is probably one of the grossest misconceptions of how God feels about sin.
But on page 120 is says this: “I’m not who you think I am, Mackenzie. I don’t need to punish people for sin. Sin is its own punishment, devouring you from the inside. It’s not my purpose to punish it: it’s my joy to cure it.”
Ok, this statement has only a fragment of truth in it, that is, it’s not my purpose to punish it. Meaning sin. True, God’s purpose is not to punish sin, but to punish sin is in his character. And is backed up in His word.
Also, to imply to “cure it” gives the reader the impression that sin is a sickness that we have no responsibility for, like getting cancer. Aren’t we called to repentance, and then he will heal our land.
It would require an entire ream of paper to write down every scripture and conceptual thought gleaned from scripture to show how God feels about sin and his righteous requirements set before His people who are called by His name.
Mack uses statements like this: “weren’t you always running around killing people in the Bible? You just don’t seem to fit the bill.”
Then God says: “I am what I am. I’m not trying to fit anyone’s bill.”
I’m not asking you to believe anything, but I will tell you that you’re going to find this day a lot easier if you simply accept what is, instead of trying to fit in into your preconceived notions.”
“But if you are God, aren’t you the one spilling out great bowls of wrath and throwing people into a burning lake of fire?
Now this next statement is what throws the reader into a mind set to get the desired result when he “the writer” is trying to bring his point home.
“Honestly, don’t you enjoy punishing those who disappoint you?
Then God’s statement: “I’m not who you think I am, Mackenzie. I don’t need to punish people for sin. Sin is its own punishment, devouring you from the inside. It’s not my purpose to punish it: it’s my joy to cure it.”

Now if you’re a humanist these statements would make you feel good about who God is, unfortunately for unrepentant sinners, God is not a humanist and He is going to judge sin and cast into the lake of fire all his adversaries.
Jesus said himself that the Holy Spirit was going to come and bring to convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment.
It’s not a sickness but a behavior problem, it’s an obedience problem.
By his statements “I’m not who you think I am, or, I am what I am, I’m not trying to fit anyone’s bill”
These statements if your mind is unguarded will allow you to begin to doubt God’s written word, since earlier in the book by Mack’s own admission, his thoughts and perceptions of God were based on bible school, and the bible.

Reason #4: Page 182; Jesus speaking, “Who said anything about being a
Christian? I’m not a Christian.”
Then Mack states, “Does that mean that all roads will lead to you?”
“Jesus states, not at all but then says; “What it does mean is that I will travel any road to find you.”
This apparently means Jesus will travel any road to join them in their self-transformation.
Dr. James B. DeYounge, ThD., Professor of New Testament Language and Literature at Western Seminary, states: “I have known the author and Young and I and our families have interacted.. Paul (Young) and I belonged to a Christian “think tank” of sorts and we conversed about many theological issues. About 4 years ago Paul embraced Christian universalism and has defended this on several occasions.
This book promotes universal Reconciliation.
Also Christ states in the shack “I am the best way any human can relate to Papa/elousia and Sarayu.”
But is Jesus only the best way? The words best way are ever present, “the best way to eat pancakes is with maple syrup” Yet that is not the only way to eat them. “The best way to Oregon from California is the I-5 highway.” Yet it’s not the only way to Oregon.” This “best way” teaching is consistent with other inter-spirituality concepts in the book.

Reason #5: The Bible is not true because it reduces God to paper.
Pages 65-66, in seminary he had been taught that God had completely stopped any overt communication with moderns, preferring to have them only listen to and follow sacred Scripture, properly interpreted, of course. God’s voice had been reduced to paper, and even that paper had to be moderated and deciphered by the proper authorities and intellects, It seemed that direct communication with God was something exclusively for the ancients and uncivilized, while educated
westerners’ access to God was mediated and controlled by the intelligentsia. Nobody wanted God in a box, just in a book. Especially in expensive one bound in leather with gilt edges, or was that guilt edges?
Let’s tackle his statements;
The bible is God –breathed. Yes its true many men put pen to paper, but none the less The Holy Spirit infused their work with God’s words.
Men of God were writing God’s message from Genesis to Revelation.

Closing statements:
On his boat ride with sarayu, he knew he was in her presence because he could feel the tingling down his spine. Pg 195
In chapter 15 “the festival of friends” Pg 216
When he meets his father he feels euphoric.
“Suddenly to their right, from out of the darkness emerged Jesus, and Pandemonium broke out.

Bringing my thoughts to a close I must first tackle this word Pandemonium.
“a state of utter confusion and uproar, pandaemonium the name for the capital of hell coined by John Milton, its French/Greek ; pan meaning all, and daimon meaning demon.
“You could say all demons.”
Pandemonism: worship of demons, or genii, localized in all sorts of natural phenomena.

There are some pragmatic teachers including the likes of John Kilpatrick, who would claim the power of God’s presence by a feeling or a manifestation that can’t be verified by scripture.
During one of John’s church services he stated that we need more Pandemonium, we need more of God.
Now I can’t prove this but the author of this book probably has been practicing a spirituality that brings him to an altered state of consciousness, I would love to have a talk with him and discuss with him his methods of prayer, “Contemplative” which would include manifestations.
I think of the Kundalini awakening so named by the Hindu religion, but this technique is also practiced by New Age believers, The Occult and Contemplatives.
This is going to bring people to doubt God’s word by the mere presence of a manifestation, (read the beautiful side of evil) I have heard preachers who promote this stuff say things like, don’t put God in a box, or don’t limit God. When we start to doubt someone’s teachings aren’t we thinking of a scripture or thought gleaned right out of God’s word?
Don’t we always compare what people teach by scripture, to test, to judge, to reprove, to rebuke? Yet they know what they are about to say will not line up with God’s written word so they say before hand don’t put God in a box. Or worse yet they call those who use scripture as their plum line those old Pharisees. “No one wants to be a Pharisee, do they?”
The word says; Test the spirits, lest we be led astray. Simon the sorcerer was an example of someone who historically was reported to obtain secret knowledge. Most scholars will agree that was the beginning of Gnostic teachings that the disciples had to contend with.

A.W. Tozer said: “wrong ideas about God are not only the fountain from which the polluted waters of idolatry flow; they are themselves idolatrous. The idolater simply imagines things about God and acts as if they were true.”

“The Shack” is a book that promotes a Universal Reconciliation.
Pantheistic in nature and character, “the ground of all being” A God that does not judge sin and we should not judge sin either, even in ourselves.
Sin isn’t even called sin but disappointment.
The Jesus portrayed in the book is the best way compared to others, and no matter what path your on Jesus will meet you there, who is never disappointed in his people and never expects anything from us, just relationship, whatever that means.
Paul Young’s god is not the God of the bible.
Unless this book is used for teaching purposes, to teach about detecting heresy, or a class on discernment, I would never recommend this book to anybody, especially those who are not grounded in their faith and could be in danger of spiritual shipwreck.
Eph 4:11-14
11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

1Tim 1:18-20
18 This charge I commit unto thee, my child Timothy, according to the prophecies which led the way to thee, that by them thou mayest war the good warfare;
19 holding faith and a good conscience; which some having thrust from them made shipwreck concerning the faith:
20 of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I delivered unto Satan, that they might be taught not to blaspheme.

By Howard Radcliffe.






_________________
howard

 2008/12/25 15:57Profile
CJaKfOrEsT
Member



Joined: 2004/3/31
Posts: 901
Melbourne, Australia

 Re:

Quote:

poet wrote:
CJaKfOrEsT:
In all due respect, you are making assumptions to my statements, and comming to conclusions that I have not made; or--- I may not be communicating myself well enough to get my thoughts out correctly. If that be the case IM sorry, I'll try and get better at this blog stuff.
I never justify hurting a child and at the same time demanding respect from them.


Brother, I think you have made wrong assumptions about my statements, as you have of some of the statements in the book. The "misconceptions about God" centred around Mack's understanding of who God is, based on what was presented to him by his earthly father. God appeared to Mack as a woman, until "He" could get Mack past his own unforgiveness toward his father, at which point He ceased appearing as a woman, and began to appear as a man. In this the Lord was gently leading Mack toward the realisation that is "closer than a mother", and is the proper representation of a Father, and not the erroneous one show by his earthly one.

When I first saw God presented as a Woman, I was offended, but then I considered how God is compared to a mother in the Proverbs, and to a mother hen, protecting her chicks "under the shadow of [i]His[/i] wings". In other words, He retained His masculine distinction, in spite of being described in "feminine terms". I heard once that the name "El Shaddai" bears the symbolism of God having breasts, in order to suckle "His young" (I believe Ron Bailey pointed this out in one of his sermons, so I welcome him to correct me if I got that wrong).

That, being said, is a slight deviation on my above point. I was not implying that Poet was condoning cruelty to children, only that Mack's "misconception of God" did condone such a thing, and therefore had to be forsaken, and corrected. That would be to put the books statement in context, rather than drawing parallels with statements made by people who despise sound doctrine.

Quote:

The child who is mistreated will stand before God and give account for His or Her lack of respect toward their parents, and at the same time the parents will stand before God and give account also..


Again, this statement is responding to a "real life example" of the situation above. My friend turn his back on God, among other reasons, because of the "false notion of God presented to him, in his earthly father", in spite of his father proclaiming proper orthodoxy about God the Father. When he told his mother, "I just can't do what God wants me to do, to be saved." his mother replied, "How did you ever get the idea in your head that you had to [b]do[/b] anything to be saved?" They believed, a testified to the truth about "salvation by faith alone, which is not of works", and yet their home life implied that God required him to "do" something, on top of what Christ had done. All this because he was frequently "provoked to wrath". Note that the child's command to "honour his parents", is for his to take responsibility for his own actions, where the parental commandment to "not provoke his child to wrath" commands him to take responsibility for "his child's response" to his conduct (that thought should send a shudder though the spine of any parent).

Quote:
You dont have to be a theologian to know that God does and will, and If you are a child of God then you too will be chastened because he Loves us and wants us to be a bride without spot or blemish.
the shack wrongly portrays God on the whole chapters diatribe to how God deals with HIS children. titled "here come da judge"
Anyway here is my paper.



Firstly, not only does the Shack not deny Judgement, but it testifies to it, and to chastening. The chapter title "Here Come Da Judge" addressed the fact that, in Mack being offended at God for allowing his daughter to be abducted, he had in fact allowed himself to take the place of judge from God, and against God.

Sofia placed Mack in "God's shoes", so to speak, requiring him to choose which of his children would go to hell, and which wouldn't, based on their conduct. When Mack finally suggested, "Can I go for them?" Sofia let him off the hook, because he made the same choice as God, to die for their sins.

Sofia's comment, "Judgment is not about destruction, but about setting things right" does not deny the fact of judgement, but challenged his concept of the purpose of judgment. This event brought to my mind "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9) It presents a God who's desire, in judgement is rehabilitation (isn't that the reason that the Spirit of Truth convicts the world of "sin, righteousness and judgement"?), and yet there are those who will ultimately reject such, and be condemned eternally.

Regarding your treatise, I will wait until I have had a chance to read it fully before I reply further. One question regarding it, before I do. How long did it take you to read the book before writing this, and how many times? (Sorry that was two:oops:)


_________________
Aaron Ireland

 2008/12/26 11:03Profile
CJaKfOrEsT
Member



Joined: 2004/3/31
Posts: 901
Melbourne, Australia

 Re:

Quote:

Koheleth wrote:
Permit me a couple of questions on your final paragraph.



No problem, and here are some answers :-)

Quote:
Is backlash inherently wrong? I see the comments here focusing on bad theology more than popularity, which is presented as a noteable but lesser concern.



No problem with backlash. I'm all for backlash. In fact, when I mentioned to friend of mine tonight that I had found myself impressed with the Shack (finished it tonight), he said, "What? Will the real Aaron please stand up? You? Impressed by something someone else wrote?" Brother I am an extreme scrutineer, and in fact approached this book with a high degree of scrutiny, expecting to have serious issues with it, on the onset.

Quote:
If "our theological intellect" is not in error, why would God offend it?


By that can I assume that you know all that there is to know about God? You are never challenged by reading the Scripture that a little "theological tweaking" is required, here and there?

Everyone embraces some error, even if minute. In fact, everyone could be justified in believing that they were the only one with a handle on truth. After all, we are only aware of our own deception when it is presented to us, at which point we are no longer deceived in that area. The question is, whether or not we have to wisdom to anticipate such a looming correction, when we still feel that we are right.

Quote:
Why would God use a questionable work of fiction before he would correct his people using Scripture? Or using teachers and prophets?


Brother, if you were to reread my post, you'd see earlier that I mentioned that such a book could direct our attention to ignored truth, contained in Scripture. That last paragraph was merely pointing back to such a statement.

Also, don't forget that the works of the reformers were considered to be "questionable", at best, by the mainstream of Christendom. My point of that last statement was to challenge us to consider that we may have chosen the "wrong side to bat for" in this theological contest. The Catholics derived that salvation was by works, citing James as there reference, and even Luther couldn't initially answer them, without denying the Epistle's authenticity. Could it be that, either we have missed something that the Shack is trying to bring into focus, or we have misread something within the Shack that causes us to see error, which is in fact not there.

For example, I read this in another forum:
Quote:

"Those who love me come from every system that exists.They were [u]Buddhists or Mormons, Baptists or Muslims[/u], Democrats, Republicans and many who don't vote or are not part of any Sunday morning or religious institutions."

the highlighted portion bothers me....a lot. Can someone help me out?



Here's a response:
Quote:

i think the keyword missed by many is WERE.


In fact, immediately after this quote comes the following:
Quote:

'Does that mean,' asked Mack, 'that all roads will lead to you?'

'Not at all,' smiled Jesus... 'Most roads don't lead anywhere. What it does mean is that I will travel any road to find you.'


So in other words, the original poster decided that the Shack promoted universalism, in spite of the very next statement contextualising the first, flatly denying such an accusation.
Quote:

Finally, why would God use this book instead of Scripture to have Christians "go on to perfection"? I think the word of God plus a few aids for motivation and discipleship are enough.


And you know what, so do the Jehovah's Witnesses.:-P Seriously, allow me to reiterate, Shack, pointing to Scripture, not replacing it.


_________________
Aaron Ireland

 2008/12/26 11:41Profile
CJaKfOrEsT
Member



Joined: 2004/3/31
Posts: 901
Melbourne, Australia

 Re: God's children / God's limitation

Quote:

poet wrote:

Reason #1. This will be pertaining to my previous statement about Page 97 stating God being who he is.
The statement is good, but then in the entirety of the book, God is represented other than he really is. For example: Chapter 11 titled “Here come Da Judge”
Mack is put through an emotional roller coaster, then ultimately we, by Paul Young’s writing prowess, on pages 162- 163 [u][b]1.[/b]Mack is forced to choose two of his children that he must judge to hell[/u], thus putting us in the same position concerning our own children, and in the place of God. Ultimately Mack refuses to do it, bringing home the point that of course he couldn’t, because [u]he loves his children too much to do such a horrendous thing, and is willing to take their place thus implying that Jesus did the same for us. And causing us to assume the same for God that he loves us so much as to never send any of his children to hell[/u]. Thus bring God down to our level, and in another part of the book [u][b]2.[/b]he implies that God limits himself, for whatever reason[/u], but in a statement in the book Mack is told that [u]God likes surprises, which is also a human trait[/u] not a God trait.

This emotional story gets your mind to misrepresent who God is and how the atonement is supposed to work. The Gospel is misrepresented in this story and how God feels about sin and judgment.
Psalm 50:21 these things you have done and I kept silent, you thought I was all together like you but I will rebuke you and set them in order before your eyes.


[b]Point 1.[/b]
In response to your statement, may I ask if you believe every human to be "God's child"? Christ Himself certainly made a different distinction (note the color changes to identify the speakers [color=990000]red[/color] for Christ, [color=000099]blue[/color] for the Pharisees -
Quote:
[b]41 [/b][color=990000][u]Ye do the deeds of your father.[/u][/color] Then said they to him, [color=000099]We be not born of fornication; [u]we have one Father, [i]even [/i]God[/u][/color].
[b]42[/b] Jesus said unto them, [color=990000][u]If God were your Father, ye would love me[/u]: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me.[/color]
[b]43 [/b][color=990000]Why do ye not understand my speech? [i]even[/i] because ye cannot hear my word.[/color]
[b]44 [/b][color=990000][u]Ye are of [i]your[/i] father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do[/u]. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.[/color]
[b]John 8:41-44[/b]


Christ here has made a clear distinction between the regenerate, and the unregenerate. Mack, although a tortured soul in need of healing, was a believer, and therefore God's child. God will not said any of [b]His children[/b] to hell. It is the unregenerate, ie the "children of the devil", which are destined for the "everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels" (Matthew 25:41).

The above quote says, "he loves his children too much to do such a horrendous thing, and is willing to take their place thus implying that Jesus did the same for us", and you appear to take issue with such a notion, in spite of its similarity with this one, "But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8) Isn't this the key component of the Gospel?

[b]Point 2.[/b]
The mystery of the hyperstatic union is that of God limiting Himslef, becoming Human, without relieving Himself of His divinity.
Quote:
[b]5 [/b]Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
[b]6 [/b]Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
[b]7 [/b]But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
[b]8 [/b]And [u]being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross[/u].
[b]Philippians 2:5-8[/b]


Consider Christ crucified. Jurgen Moltmann entitled a book, "The Crucified God". While I haven't personally read the book, Art Katz refer to it often, in his preaching. The mere title conjures up an image that is little faced, in its enormity, "When Christ died, God died." The Omnipotent One [b]limited Himself[/b] to such a capacity to enable Him to endure death.

The mere subjection of Himself to the restraints of time is a limitation. To be longsuffering toward us as He awaits our repentance is a limitation.

(to be continued...)


_________________
Aaron Ireland

 2008/12/27 5:35Profile
CJaKfOrEsT
Member



Joined: 2004/3/31
Posts: 901
Melbourne, Australia

 Re:

Quote:

poet wrote:

Reason #2. Page 169 God speaking “[u][b]1.[/b] Mackenzie, judgment is not about destruction, but about setting things right.[/u]”
Why do I have a problem about this statement?, because in another statement in the book on pages 205-207 were [u]forced to bring our minds to believe in a concept of [b]2.[/b] expectations versus a relationship[/u], changing who the God of the bible is, and what he requires of us.
On page 206 it states: “the idea behind expectations requires that someone does not know the future or outcome and is trying to control behavior to get the desired result. Humans try to control behavior largely through expectations. I know you and everything about you. Why would I have an expectation other than what I already know? That would be foolish. And beyond that, because I have no expectations, you never disappoint me”.
First, he is calling God a fool in this statement, because for example, God does know the future, and did have expectations for his people, King Saul’s example, was “God” not grieved about Saul, yet he already knew Saul’s disobedience would take place, and regretted making Saul King over Israel.
Was not God grieved about the human race and had Noah build an Ark, or grieved with Israel to the point to giving Moses the opportunity to become the father of the nations, of which Moses interceded for them. Does not God have requirements and expectations from all of us? Including his Son Jesus, who when after getting baptized God in a audible voice this is my son whom I am greatly pleased. [u]How can God be pleased about something unless he had an expectation based on an act of obedience?[/u] Thus, the statement made to John the Baptist stating that he had to do this thing to fulfill the law.
Rule of first mention. Genesis 4:7 if you do well will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well sin lies at the door and its desire if for you but you should rule over it.
Notice that here the scripture is clear about expectations, yet in “The Shack” we’re forced to think of a God who knows everything which is true but apply it to expectations which is an incorrect thinking pattern.
The bible is full of IF’s would imply an expectation on God’s part from HIS servants.
Side note; [u][b]3.[/b] God refers to himself as Mack’s servant. That is a big problem, read Isaiah 6 or consider the bema seat of Christ, who is serving who anyway?[/u]


Okay, I've tried to break the above section into points, but it is difficult, because there is a great volume of misconceptions in it (I'm sorry, but I couldn't find a nicer way to put that, while maintaining integrity. I hope that statement won't close you off to what I am about to say).

[b]Point 1.[/b]
I have already commented in an [url=http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=23641&forum=35#207147]earlier post[/url] regard the statement "judgment is not about destruction, but about setting things right", so I will not repeat them here.

[b]Point 2.[/b]
This point of "rules vs relationship" is one of the hardest to convey, and easiest to be misconstrued. Consider that Paul wisely inserted into his Roman epistle "What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?" (Romans 6:1-2), as if anticipating that there was no way to convey the concept of "justification by faith" without such an accusation being levelled.

Firstly is required a proper understanding of the Law..
Quote:
[b]18[/b] For if the inheritance [i]be[/i] of the law, [i]it is[/i] no more of promise: but God gave [i]it[/i] to Abraham by promise.
[b]19[/b] [u]Wherefore then [i]serveth[/i] the law? [b]It was added[/b] because of transgressions, [b]till the seed should come[/b] to whom the promise was made[/u]; [i]and it was[/i] ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.
[b]20[/b] Now [i]a mediator[/i] is not a mediator of one, but God is one.
[b]Galatians 3:18-20[/b]


Okay, in a sense the Law "was", in the beginning (John 1:1), although it was not in the form of the letter, but in the form of God, Himself. God had no expectation to man, in the garden, were to have a "knowledge of good and evil", but that he was to entrust his judgments to the One who truly "knows good and evil". It was about trusting the the promise given was by One who is trustworthy.

Through Christ's finished work on Calvary, we who have put our trust in Him have returned to that full stature of relationship with God, having received the witness of the Spirit, that we are God's children. True obedience is only possible out of a relationship with Him (Hebrews 11:6).

I don't know about you, but I am pleased with my children (see definition of a child of God in last post) regardless of their behaviour, whether is grieves me or not. The father was pleased with His Son, because of [b]who He was[/b]. Christ's obedience proceeded out of who He was. And so does ours. Our conduct is a mere by product of our nature, and God sees the heart, before and after the actions have occurred (Matthew 12:33, Luke 16:16, Romans 6:17, Ephesians 6:6, 1 Thessalonians 2:4).

Whether we are Calvinist, or Arminian, we have to admit that God knows our actions before they have occurred, and yet He dies for us, before they were ever committed. This is the point that is being conveyed here, granted from an Arminian perspective, more than Calvinist. Do I 100% agree with the intricacies of the authors thought processes? Well, no. But I can say the same of almost every Christian author that I have read, and they are all quoting from the same Scripture.

This issue of being liberated from the bondage of the Law (which is really what it is), is often glossed over, or watered down to present Christ's sacrifice as being lacking, to some degree.

[b]Point 3.[/b]
I have already quoted Philippians 2:5-8, so I won't again. But one only needs to consider Christ's washing of the disciples feet? One of the main reasons that the Pharisees rejected the Messiah, was that they expected a king, but received a servant. There is a difference between being a servant by necessity, and being one by choice.

(To be continued...)


_________________
Aaron Ireland

 2008/12/27 7:09Profile
poet
Member



Joined: 2007/2/16
Posts: 231
Longview WA

 Re:

CJaKfOrEsT:
I agree that Christ came as a servant, but NOW he IS Lord and King.
Mack is seeing the Lord after he has been lifted up and in His exalted position.
I suppose depending upon which lens we look through we can perceive different things from the same writing.
Mack sees Jesus as a buddy, who he can pal around with, I see Jesus as someone who is to be worshipped, honored, exalted, and served, he does not serve me, the only ways he serves or served me was when he offered himself as a perfect sacrafice on the cross to pay for my transgressions.
Upon which time he proclaimed: "It is finished."
He is also my perfect mediator, who prays for not only me but His church.

Theologically, we may agree or disagree, Im not sure at this time, but we just see the book differently, In my reading of it I was perceiving an agenda in the writing is all.
God bless you and keep you.


_________________
howard

 2008/12/27 12:14Profile





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