Tag Archives: The Shack

The Shack Revisited By C. Baxter Kruger

This book review is being submitted as part of an agreement in exchange for a review copy.

The Shack Revisited: There Is More Going On Here Than You Ever Dared to Dream by C Baxter Kruger, and foreword by Wm. Paul Young.

Review

For the first two chapters, Kruger remained true to his thesis, that the book was a theological exploration of The Shack. However, for the rest of the book, up until the very last chapter, the focus on The Shack was marginal at best, with just quotes from the novel interspersed with quotes from Barth, Calvin, and Athanasius. Nothing really wrong with that, except that the book was supposed to be about The Shack and really read more like a book on the history of Western theology with random quotes from the novel added in. I really enjoyed reading Kruger’s take on Athanasius, Arius, and Irenaeus and the Church Fathers. I would rather read more about these folks than Pappa and Mack, honestly. That being said, I would recommend this book for laypersons interested in church history as well as academics and pastors who are fans of The Shack who want to find a way to talk about the Trinity/church history/theological studies with laity.

The Shack: Reflections For Every Day Of The Year by Wm. Paul Young

As per an agreement to receive a review copy of this book, I am writing a review of this work here.

The Shack:Reflections For Everyday Day Of The Year by Wm. Paul Young

Review:

In the past, I have reviewed The Shack from an anthropological perspective, with a liberationist interpretation of its characters. The Shack:Reflections is more of a devotional to guide fans of The Shack to reflect on what Wm. Paul Young is trying to teach us about God. The emphasis is on a God who is with us in our pain and suffering, who love us and is working for us. I see this devotional as an act in practical theology,a way of doing relational theology. Although, be warned, it is very light on citing Scripture.

I would recommend this book for any person who is a fan of The Shack. If you are not, just don’t bother.

Sex In the Trinity: Wm. Paul Young’s The Shack p 6/6

Before reading each article of the series, please take the time to read the (2) disclaimers:

DISCLAIMER #1: The following blog post is NOT theological criticism or a heresy-head hunting game by any stretch of Wm. Paul Young’s The Shack. I am more sympathetic with open & process theisms, so there is no need for this author to scan The Shack for doctrinal errors.

DISCLAIMER #2: Be aware that what I share are from a 2010 joint-presentation I and my friend Adam DJ Brett, a PhD entering his first year of work at Syracuse this fall. Post 5 of this 6 part series will be mostly his research, and his intellectual property. If you wish to use this information, please cite him as the source. Also, given that this setting is a blog, I do not assume that everyone is familiar with the concepts I shall place forth, so, unlike the paper and hopefully forthcoming journal article, I will be making available definitions and sources if need be.

Towards a Negative (thea/theo/thee) -logical anthropology

The problem with much of Christian fiction (film and novels included) is that white privilege goes utterly ignored. So thus, every film that is dipped in Jesus sauce gets to be called speaking for all Christians, when it reality, they do not. The Passion of the Christ? It is one voice of  many who identify with Vatican I Catholicism. Fireproof? White Conservative evangelicals of the married and employed persuasion– the perfect movie for Tither-Driven churches. Jumping The Broom? Conservative upper-class black Christians worried about the state of the “Black family”–whatever black may mean, right?

William P. Young’s The Shack reveals liberal Protestant Christianity’s blindspot to racist histories, and I would say that anyone that embraces the racial Others in The Shack uncritically is guilty of the same thing; this is not pointing the finger at every fan of The Shack, but I would say ideas such as The Shack Bible Project would be culpable in this regard. It seemed to me in my and Adam’s endeavor here that we encountered a number of arguments (i.e., emotional appeals seeing this as an attack on Young’s person) that verified for us the accuracy of our findings.

What Christians need to do in their fiction pieces is to start talking about what human beings are NOT meant to be, in other words, a negative thea/eo/ee-logical anthropology. This should involve input from communities that have been historically discriminated against, and ignored as legitimate voices in “The Church.” I would suggest that instead of using The Shack to talk about g*d, why not race relations? There isn’t a textbook about how to go about racial reconciliation, so why not use The Shack as a conversation starter, in exposing how our oppressive gazes interfere with the lives of Asian, Black, Latin@, and Jewish friends alike.