At the suggestion of my mother and some other members of my family, I’ve just finished The Shack by Wm. Paul Young. My overall impression is that its a good book, especially for someone who has recently lost a family member or someone who has strayed away from God. The first part was hard to get through, I’m not one for violence against children. It turns my stomach. Everything is righted at the end, but its still difficult.
The one thing to remember is that this is a fictional book. If anybody were to interpret this as literal or a true story they would have a hard time believing it. It does raise some great questions though. Something I have always struggled with is if Jesus is the only way to the Father, then what about the billions of other people who aren’t Christians? There are many people who are never given the chance to learn about Him, so why should they be damned? I think this book sheds some interesting light on that issue.
Even more interesting: is this book so appealing because this is the type of God people want to believe in? A God that unconditionally loves us with no eternal consequences for our actions? It puts a huge dent in the belief of predestination. Many of aspects of this book make sense to me, but its not based on Scripture. There’s even some antiestablishment tones about religion…I don’t know if Jesus would say some of the things he did in this book. Even though the church is a human establishment susceptible to evil, I would think Jesus is happy about some of things we are doing.
Overall, I would suggest reading it. It’s a short read and will raise some feelings that maybe you haven’t had in awhile.