It is March 12, 2017. I have seen many posting on Facebook their take on the movie The Shack during the past week since it came out in theaters. Most consider this a great movie full of the messages of love and forgiveness. Some claim it is clean feel good entertainment while containing doctrinal errors akin to the TV show Touched by An Angel. Some are accusing those who are boycotting it due to doctrinal and/or theological issues of being religious. Personally, I have not seen the movie yet. At the time of this writing, I am still deciding if I will or not.
I do not consider myself “religious” as I have purposefully, over the past two decades, fought against that spirit in multiple ways in my life. I do have a personal relationship with Jesus who I will often call by his Hebrew name Y’shua or Yeshua. (The reason for that is a topic for a different blog.) As for the subject of this blog, I wrote my take on the book The Shack when it became popular in my church family in 2009. You can find that on my Facebook page under Notes titled Death is Separation.
If you read that Note, you will find the one most damaging doctrinal or theological error contained in the book on page 96 has yet to be addressed by any of the blogs and Facebook posts I have read to date. The fact that a black woman portrays Father God is not an issue for me. We are all supposed to look like Jesus who claimed that if you saw Him you saw the Father. John 14:9
That is usually the top claim against those boycotting The Shack. I will not take the space to address the rest as it is not the purpose of this blog.
Since I have not seen the movie, I do not know if this line from the book is repeated in it.
“Regardless of what he felt at that moment, I never left him.”
If it is, this is the greatest error as it attacks the very foundation of the Gospel: that Jesus died on the cross, was buried and rose again. Why? Because death is separation. No separation equals no death. No death equals no Gospel. All the religious or bigoted issues that have been addressed in everyone else’s posts are really not the true issue. The truth of the Gospel is the real issue.
That being said, Yahweh can speak to people using anything or anyone He wishes. He can use this movie to bring healing to people and draw them into a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ if that is what it takes. I am not the judge in these matters. I do know that while praying about it the Lord told me not to be a hypocrite. If we boycott this movie due to doctrinal issues or theological errors, then we must examine what else we are listening to and ask ourselves what kind of unscriptural messages are being presented in those movies, TV shows, books, etc. and avoid ALL media that is doctrinally or theologically in error no matter how good they may seem. (I am thinking here of The Chronicals of Narnia, The Lord of the Rings, Star Trek and The Avengers and Thor movies and shows.)
Like I said before, I may or may not watch The Shack movie, but not because of any issues with doctrine or theology lest I be a hypocrite while watching other just as doctrinally or theologically erroneous movies. I have no problem with movies that portray love and forgiveness. What I do have a problem with is attacking the very foundation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
This is my take. Thanks for reading.
Rev. Dr. Mary Rager
P.S. I was taught that we are not to seek titles. For this blog, I did something I usually do not like to do – signed it using my tiles, because I do have them. Maybe I will explain this in a future blog.