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Deceived by a Counterfeit Jesus. the Shack

Deceived by a Counterfeit Jesus. the Shack

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Published by: laws632 on Jan 14, 2010
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Deceived by a counterfeit "Jesus"
The twisted "truths" of 
The Shack
 
&
 
 A Coursein Miracles
 
By Berit Kjos - February 14, 2008
 
Skip down to rethink or Christian
Comments
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Emphasisadded inboldlettersbelow
"This book has the potential to do for our generation what John Bunyan's 'Pilgrim's Progress' did for his. It's that good!" 
Eugene Peterson, author of  
 (Front cover endorsement)
 
"God, who is the ground of all being,
dwells in
, around, and through
all things
....”
 
]
 
-
-The Shack's 
"
Jesus
." 
"Those who love me come from every system that exists. They were Buddhists or Mormons, Baptists orMuslims.... I have no desire to make them Christian,but I do want to join them in their transformation into
sons and daughters of my Papa, into my brothers and sisters.”
-
-The Shack's 
"
Jesus
." 
"The esoteric spiritual traditions -- whether Christian mystics, Hebrew Kabbalists, Zen Buddhists, IslamicSufis, or Hindu yogis -- all have specific practices to help individuals overcome this great '
illusion ofseparation
' and to experience the One True Self, which is in us all."
--A Course in Miracles,
as "dictated" to channeler Helen Schucman in 1977 by her spirit guide whoclaimed to be "
Jesus
.""Jesus... said to them: '
Take heed that no one deceives you. For
 
many will come in My name,
saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.
"
Matthew 24:4-5
Two books (one new, one old) have suddenly grabbed public attention and captured the hearts ofmultitudes. One is long and instructional -- a dictation from a channeled spirit guide. The other is afictional testimony full of tear-jerking dialogue.
A Course in Miracles 
(ACIM) is obviously occult, while themore subtle message of
The Shack 
by William P. Young has been widely accepted in postmodernchurches.
 
The two books share a common message. I saw a stark preview of it back in 1992. Skimming through amagazine called
Well-Being Journal 
, I noticed this New Age "insight" from the author's
"inner guide 
:""Many people believe in evil, sin, and dark forces. It is your purpose to teach the opposite which is
the 
 Truth: there is no devil, no hell, no sin, no guilt except in the creative mind of humankind."I heard similar deceptions at Gorbachev's 1997 State of the World Forum.At the time, keynote speaker
Marianne Williamson
was touting the Kabbalah,not 
 
ACIM 
 )
. While those New Age"insights" would fit both, they are best expressed through
ACIM 
, which Williamson is now popularizingthrough Oprah Winfrey's weekly radio program.
The Shack 
calls for a similar denial of reality. Yet countless pastors and church leaders are delighting in its message. By ignoring (or redefining) sin and guilt, they embrace an inclusive but counterfeit
 
"Christianity" that draws crowds but distorts the Bible. Discounting Satan as well, they weaken God's warnings about deception. No wonder His armor for today's spiritual war became an early victim of this spreading assault on Truth.Roger Oakland, author of 
,hinted at this transformation in his article"My Trip to the Rethink Conference:"
 
"For nearly two thousand years, most professing Christians have seen the Bible as the foundation for theChristian faith. The overall view at the Rethink Conference, however, is that
Christianity, as we haveknown it
, has run its course and must be
replaced
.... Speakers insisted that Christianity must be
re-thought
and
re-invented
if the name of Jesus Christ is going to survive here on planet earth."
No room for the historical Jesus? Must we reimagine God to make Him fit the rising universal church?
 
That seems to be the aim of
The Shack's 
female "God." Here she is speaking to the main character,Mackenzie (Mack for short):
 
"For me to appear to you as a woman and suggest that you call me Papa is simply to
mix metaphors, tohelp you keep from falling so easily back into your religious conditioning
."
"Religious conditioning?" Is that how Mr. Young views Biblical Christianity?
 
It's easy to be persuaded by his clever arguments.
The Shack 
is written as a personal testimony thatdraws readers into virtual dialogues with a playful, culturally relevant "God." In contrast to the dry, occultlessons in
ACIM 
,
The Shack 
leads readers into vicarious
experiences 
in a world of revelations andsensations. The only sin-like issue here is
independence 
-- what
ACIM 
calls"separateness"-- a refusal to accept universal oneness with "God" and man. Unhindered by Biblical guidelines,
The Shack 
offers nostandard for right or wrong, so there's no real need for Biblical repentance. It fits right into the popularvision of a unifying, non-judgmental church.
 
"So how do I become part of that church?" asks Mack.
 
"It's simple," answers the fictional "Jesus." "It's all about relationships and simply sharing life... being openand available to others around us. My church is all about people, and life is all aboutrelationships."
That sounds partly true, as do most spiritual lies!For example, Jesus criticized the Pharisees who "searched the Scriptures" but refused to "come" to Him. Today's postmodern seekers are just as foolish.They ignore unwanted Scriptures, and then flock to the culturally attuned "Jesus" of their imaginations.In
The Shack 
, readers meet a permissive "God" that "submits" to their human ways. They look throughthe veil between life and death, see the joy beyond, and communicate with loved ones -- subtle examplesof"calling up the dead," which the Bible bans 
(Deut. 18:11)
. Mack "sees" the colorful "auras" that showspiritual maturity among the dead-but-alive. He even practices
astral travel 
-- what
The Shack 
calls"flying"-- a word popularized by Maharishi Yogi long ago.
 
"Such a powerful ability, the imagination!" said
The Shack's 
fictional "Jesus." That power alone makesyou so like us."
Here the boundaries of the church are broadened to include almost everyone. The only exception seemsto be"independent"folk who refuse to "come" to this universal "God." This
isn't 
Christianity -- and thisfalse "Jesus" would agree. When Mack asks him what it "means to be a Christian," he answer:
 
“'Who said anything about being a Christian? I’m not a Christian.' The idea struck Mack as odd andunexpected and he couldn’t keep himself from grinning. 'No, I suppose you aren’t.'"
 
Of course, he's not! The word "Christian" refers to Christ's followers -- not to Jesus -- and it has alwaysclashed with trendy cultures. Even when
'the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch" 
(Acts 11:26),that word was a derogatory label used by enemies of the Church. But that didn't keep faithful Christiansfrom joyfully claiming that name and sharing His Word!.
 
Reimagining the Trinity
 
The Shack 
opens in the context of tragedy. Four years have passed since the cruel murder of Missy,Mack's precious six-year-old daughter. Enveloped in grief, he receives a strange invitation. "I've missedyou," it says. "I'll be at the shack next weekend if you want to get together. Papa." What could it mean?
 
Doubtful, but drawn to the meeting, Mack heads for the Oregon wilderness and finds the dilapidated oldshack. "God" miraculously transforms it into a cozy cottage, and Mack meets his supposed maker:
 
"...the door flew open, and he was looking directly into the face of a large beaming African-Americanwoman. Instinctively he jumped back, but he was too slow. With speed that belied her size, she crossedthe distance between them and engulfed him in her arms...."
"Just as she turned... a small, distinctly Asian woman merged from behind her.... He then glanced pasther and notices that a third person had emerged... a man. He appeared Middle Eastern."
"When they finally stopped giggling, the large woman... said, 'Okay, we know who you are, but we shouldprobably introduce ourselves to you. ...you could call me what Nan [Mack's wife] does: Papa.'...
“'And I,' interrupted the man, who looked to be about in his thirties.... 'I am Hebrew....'
 
“Mack was suddenly staggered by his own realization. “Then, you are....”
 
“'Jesus? Yes....'
"Mack stood dumbfounded.... Just as he was about to crumple to his knees, the Asian woman steppedcloser and deflected his attention. 'And I am Sarayu [the Holy Spirit, Creativity].' she said..."Thoughts tumbled over each other as Mack struggled to figure out what to do.... Since there werethree of them, maybe this was a Trinity sort of thing.... 'Then,' Mack struggled to ask, 'which one of you is
God?'”
 
“'I am,’ said all three in unison.'"
Their ongoing dialogues reinforce this new view of God. They immerse Mack in spiritual re-education,for each comment contradicts his previous understanding of God. For example, this new "Jesus" neverreturned to heaven. Was there no real resurrection? Not according to the female "God":
 
“Although by nature he is fully God, Jesus
is
fully human and lives as such. While never losing the innateability to
fly 
[which he demonstrates in the book], he chooses moment-by-moment to remain grounded.That is why his name is Immanuel, God with us...."
But
the Bible 
tells us that Jesus
did 
return to His heaven after His crucifixion. Besides, neither God ourFather nor the Holy Spirit made themselves finite or visible to man. 
"No one has seen God at any time," 
 said the true Jesus.
(John 1:18)
Yet, here we see
all three 
in human form -- on earth! "God" explains:
 
"'By nature I am completely unlimited... I live in a state of perpetual satisfaction as my normal state of
existence:’ she said, quite pleased. 'Just one of the perks of Me being Me.’
"That made Mack smile. This lady was fully enjoying herself...
“We created you to share in that. But then Adam chose to go it on his own, as we knew he would, and
everything got messed up. But instead of scrapping the whole Creation
we
rolled up our sleeves and
entered into the middle of the mess
—that’s what we ha
ve done in Jesus.... When
we three
spokeourself into human existence as the Son of God,
we
 
became fully human
. We also chose to embrace allthe limitations that this entailed. ...
flesh and blood
."

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