10.07.2008

Humorous Correspondence

Every day in my junk email I receive something from "prayermanager", which is mail from "Liveprayer.com". It was founded by Bill Keller. I had an interesting correspondence with them this morning about his thoughts on "The Shack". Have you read it? It is pretty good. It also has stirred up some controversy lately regarding the author's thoughts on God. The following is my emails back and forth. This post is VERY long!! Just a fair warning!!

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10/07/08 Daily Devotional. "The Shack" is NOT a Christian novel, but simply more New Age heresy. Things have not really changed since the first days of the church over 2,000 years ago. One of the problems Paul dealt with often were those who perverted the Absolute Truth of the Bible with writings that purported to be Christian. All throughout these past 2,000 years men have written books about the Christian faith that compromised the Truth of the Bible. We have never been so ripe for these types of heretical books as in the year 2008, with the better part of 2 generations having never even gone to church and the large percentage of those who do, being Biblically illiterate. So it is no wonder that a huge best selling "Christian novel," "The Shack," is the latest in a long line of heretical books promoting anti-Biblical ideas.
William P. Young, the author of "The Shack," is the son of missionaries whose dad also pastored churches in Canada. He went to Bible College and later graduated with an undergraduate degree in Religion from Warner Pacific College in Portland, Oregon. However, there is absolutely no information available on his theology. "The Shack" is an allegorical fictional novel.
It conveys postmodern spiritual ideas and teachings that challenge Biblical Christianity, all in the name of God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
Much like New Age author James Redfield's book "The Celestine Prophecy,"
"The Shack" is a fictional vehicle for upending certain Biblical concepts and presenting contrary spiritual scenarios. Young's book moves through a very engaging and emotional story to eventually present the New Age teaching that God is "in" everything. God is not "in" everyone and everything. The Bible makes it clear that man is not divine and that man is not God!
"The Shack" presents many of the same New Age concepts and ideas that plague the controversial Bible paraphrase The Message, written by Eugene Peterson who enthusiastically endorsed "The Shack," as well as Rhonda Byrne's "The Secret" that I warned you about years ago and was heavily promoted by the queen of the New Age gurus Oprah, New Age leader Benjamin Cr me's, "The Reappearance of the Christ and the Masters of Wisdom," and New Age matriarch Alice Bailey, in her book "The Reappearance of the Christ."
This "God in everything" immanence is why The Shack is such a deceptive book. It teaches this same heresy. This is most apparent when he uses the person of "Jesus" to suddenly introduce the foundational teaching of the New Spirituality, God is "in" everything. Using the New Age term "ground of being" to describe "God," the "Jesus" of The Shack states: "God, who is the ground of all being, dwells in, around, and through all things.." (p. 112)
This false teaching about a "God" who "dwells in, around, and through all things" is the kind of New Age leaven that Paul warned about. Clearly, the "Jesus" of The Shack is not Jesus Christ of the Bible. The apostle Paul warned the Corinthians that they were vulnerable and extremely susceptible to "another Jesus" and "another gospel" and "another spirit" that were not from God (2 Corinthians 2:11).
In the Bible, Jesus warned that spiritual deception would be a sign before His return. He further warned that there would be those who would even come in His name, pretending to be Him (Matthew 24:3-5;24). William Young's mixing of truth and error can become very confusing to readers, and God is not the author of confusion (I Corinthians 14:33).
We are living in such perilous times and satan is busy using tools like "The Shack" to lead people astray, many searching for real truth in their lives.
This is why I am like a broken record every day to challenge people to get out into the world and take the REAL TRUTH of the Bible to people. They are hurting, looking for answers. Why do you think books like this are so popular? It doesn't help when you have people like Pat Robertson featuring Young on The 700 Club, not to rebuke or chastise his New Age concepts, but to promote his book.
This is why I come down so hard on cotton candy preachers like Osteen, expose Masonic cult member Robert Schuller who promotes many of these same New Age concepts and even sells New Age garbage in his crystal church's bookstore, warn you about these watered down, compromised seeker/purpose driven/emergent church movements geared to attract bodies and not souls.
People are looking for life changing answers, and the ONLY place they will find those answers are in the Bible!!!
Listen, there is SO much material out there. My word of wisdom for you today is this. First, know who the author is. Research them and find out what their theology is. If you can't find it, STAY AWAY! You wouldn't go to a stranger for open heart surgery, why look for Biblical Truth from someone you don't even know. If the book isn't tied to Scripture, have any sort of Scriptural references (from credible translations and not these perverted paraphrase Bibles), STAY AWAY! I don't care how clever man thinks he is, there is no substitution for the Word of God!!! It is the ONLY Truth there is that can truly change hearts and lives.
I love you and care about you so much. "The Shack" has touched the hearts and emotions of many people. While there are many other examples of the author's unbiblical teachings, the heretical New Age concept that "God dwells in, and around, and through all things" is in and by itself enough to make this book dangerous. To allow yourself to get carried away by this story, while disregarding the book's New Age concepts, is the kind of compromise that has invaded the church today.
I have learned over these many years of ministry to be very leery of anything that is embraced by the world and becomes wildly popular by the masses. The fact is, the pure Truth of the Bible is NOT something this lost world gravitates to. They want something that feels good, makes them happy for a moment, helps them through a difficult time, without making any real commitment or sacrifice in return. That is why the spiritual crack of our day, these New Age teachings are so popular. Sacrifice and service don't sell, success and satisfaction does!!!
I will be praying for those who are caught up in "The Shack," that the Lord will put the right people in their lives to help guide them to the real Truth of His Word.
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder liveprayer.com
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(My email back to Bill)
Hello Mr. Keller.
I am a little perturbed at your daily devotional “lesson” today. Having read “The Shack” for what it is – a work of fiction – I thought you were too tough of a critic and certainly very biased. And at times, not scripturally based yourself.
I have met Paul Young, and have talked with him about his book. These aren't his exact thoughts, they are mine. But he is a very down to earth follower of Christ, like yourself. His intentions were good in writing this book. A few points you might find interesting:
1) This fictional book was meant as a story for his kids, not as a “New Age Heresy”. There was no intent for this to be a “Christian novel”, as you claim it is. Sure you might find it in the Christian section of Borders just because it has the word “God” in it, but it was written for his children as a fictional novel. It was not written as a “vehicle for upending certain biblical concepts”.
2) Romans 8:10-12 reads: But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. And the spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies thru His spirit, who lives in you. I guess I am a little confused by your train of thought that Jesus does not live in us once we hand our lives over to Him. That’s what giving our lives to Christ is – salvation – a relationship with the God head three in one. In every translation that I found of that passage there is some mention of Christ either “living in us” or “dwelling in us” or “taking up residence in us”.
3) Jesus of “the Shack” is clearly not the Jesus Christ of the bible. No kidding. He wasn’t meant to be. It is a fictional book!
4) God is the “ground of all being”. Please see Genesis 1.
5) God created everything and dwells in us once we give our lives to him. He is omnipotent. Or am I off base here?
If you could please explain your train of thinking scripturally I would be opening to hearing it. I believe in a God who walks in this life with me, not one who sits on a throne a dictates what is happening. I believe that Jesus and the Holy Spirit live in me and give me wisdom and guidance and comfort (Proverbs), and I did not learn this from “The Shack”.
I also don’t think that Satan is using this book for his purposes. I also don’t believe that God is using it to bring people to salvation. I believe the book is creating good, however. I believe that “The Shack” is making people at least think about God, and think that if there is something else out there that is greater than them, and better than them, that they might look in to it. And THAT is good. That is not evil.
Comparing Paul Young to Joseph Smith is a little bit of a cheap shot, don’t you think? He’s just a guy who wrote a fictional book, not a guy who created a cult.
I will be praying for you too, Bill.
Sincerely,
Alex Casebeer
PS What are some “many examples of the author’s unbiblical teachings”? Would you please send them to me? I would like to know.
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(response)
it is Biblically illiterate folks like yourself who make marketing such garbage so easy...go do some homework my friend..type in The Shack heresy..and you can do the research for yourself..it is dangerous..and if the author didn't do it intentionally..he out of sheer ignorance..created a book that is leading people AWAY form the true Christ..and into New Age teachings from hell..you are right..I am biased..for the TRUTH of the Bible..period..
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder, http://www.liveprayer.com/
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(me)
You failed to answer any of my questions.
Or respond to any of my facts or points I made. Genesis 1? Romans? Anything?
Instead of attacking me, maybe, just maybe we can have a conversation. Feel free to call.
Alex
503.569.3135
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listen...Dr. Keller gets over 40,000 emails a DAY..most are for prayer..there are 700 of here who answer them...we are a prayer ministry..over 2.4 MILLION people worldwide read what Dr. Keller writes every day..we don't ahve time for "conversations" with everyone who agrees or disagrees with what he writes..if you want to defend this heretical garbage..knock yourself out..sadly..this is the state of the church today..people defending anti-Biblical works,,my suggestion..go spend some time with God..and a real book..the BIBLE
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder, http://www.liveprayer.com/
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(me)
Dear nameless:
Such a loving and welcoming “ministry” you have! It sure makes me want to keep reading what Bill writes! Is this how you respond to everyone?
As “people of a prayer ministry”, maybe adopting a little more loving attitude would benefit all 700 of you…and the 2.4 million readers.
Well, 2,399,999 now. You just lost one of them.
Hold on I have a prayer request!! Can you pray that I continue to seek and follow God’s will for my life?
Thank you,
Alex
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it is your loss..not ours..but I will pray the Lord gives you better discernment..
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder, http://www.liveprayer.com/
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Dear the one who has no name:
Aren’t we trying to win hearts for the Kingdom? Win hearts for the Love of God? Save souls that are lost and have no hope?
I didn’t ask for prayer for discernment! But thanks anyway, discernment is good.

This time I would like prayer for discipline. Sometimes I struggle with having quiet times every day, and need to do a better job at that.
Thank you,
Alex
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winning souls is what we do here every day..not with New Age garbage like the Shack..but the BIBLE..be blessed..
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder, http://www.liveprayer.com/
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Dear Unknown:
I am glad you win souls every day! I’m a little disappointed that you didn’t try harder with me. I feel attacked and disrespected! But I didn’t say that I win souls with The Shack. I use the Bible too, just like you!
But as you instructed me, I will be blessed. I feel blessed every day already! Do you have any prayer requests? I would like to pray for you directly.
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Alex Casebeer
Matthew 5:44
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be blessed..
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder, http://www.liveprayer.com/
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Booooo!!! Are you done? I still have questions unanswered!
Alex
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LOL..no..done wasting my time..what a tool you are..
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder, http://www.liveprayer.com/
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I am shocked.
How can you be so bitter and unfriendly and work for a ministry? Just doesn’t make sense to me. And it is a horrible representation of the person and character of Jesus Christ. You really should do some bible reading yourself!
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Alex Casebeer
Matthew 5:44
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LOL!!!..you defend new age garbage and want to be taken seriously..give me a break..move on son...
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder, http://www.liveprayer.com/
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New Age Garbage New Age Garbage…..Nameless, I wish you would use your own words and thoughts and ideas instead of living out of the back pocket of Big Bad Bill Keller! Hold on let me count the times you used the phrase “New Age Garbage” in our “conversations”………..............counting….........……..4 times!! And I really didn’t even defend "The Shack"...just asked for responses to Bill’s “devotional” – which you, or he, never gave!
Thanks for the advice, dad.
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Alex Casebeer
Matthew 5:44
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no ..your daddy is clearly satan...run along before a house falls on you
Know that I am praying for you, be richly blessed,
Bill Keller
Founder, http://www.liveprayer.com/
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Dear nameless person:
What is this, the Wizard of Oz? Houses don’t fall on people like they did on Dorothy!! Clearly you don’t have anything better to do than attack me, who was just searching for some simple answers from a devotional that your boss wrote. I didn’t realize that it would be this hard!
I hope you have found as much enjoyment in our conversations as I have!
Regards,
Alex
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There you have it. I found it to be rather interesting, and funny, and tragic. But needless to say, I guess I'll stop reading Daily Devotional now...
Thanks for reading, if you made it this far! More to come later from Boone...they all won't be this long, I promise!!!

Alex

3 comments:

j.o. said...

WOW. That person took a very harsh tone wtih you. Not what i would have expected. I'm sorry to see such a thing. But I appreciate your effort in trying to get him to actually have a conversation with you.

ejscofield said...

I am shocked. Did I say shocked? I would love to meet that person face to face AND see if this Dr. K really knows how this person dealt with you. Totally unacceptable. ejs

soundguy said...

I love that you tried to engage them. Blatant misinformation frustrated me. Great post. Peace. - the other jimmy in your life