Now everyone’s going to think I’m really a “Shack fanboy” and that’s okayâ€¦’cause I really love the message of this little book and the impact it’s having around the world. A small work of fiction, The Shack was written by a fifty-year-old man at the insistence of his wife to explain his core convictions of God’s unconditional love and grace, after going through years of personal failure and the ensuing pain of feeling outside the reach of restoration. So he wrote it all down in an effort to spare them the pain of forty years of wrong-headed thinking about God; and he uses fiction as a metaphor to compress his lifetime into one weekend with God at a place that represents the greatest pain and sadness of his life.
Anyway, I could go on and on, but the reason for this post is simply to identify a series of three in-depth interviews featuring William Paul Young by Dr. J. Michael Feazell, executive editor of “The Plain Truth” magazine and senior advisor to the president of The Worldwide Church of God. This three-part video magazine focus, “You’re Included,” can be accessed in the video archives of the WCG where you can watch the three videos, listen to the audio, download WMV’s (Windows Media Player), MP4′s for your iPod, or even ISO files to create DVD’s for playback on your home entertainment system. Pretty impressive array of choices: there’s even a written transcript for those who might like to borrow a few quotes. [ NOTE: If the above link does not work, please copy and paste the following URL into your browser: http://www.wcg.org/av/YI.htm ]
I think you will discover more about Paul Young in these three episodesâ€”his humility and his love for truthâ€”than you will ever get in reading the plethora of book reviews and even (if you can believe it) the warnings of the doctrine police. Sadly, I feel they are missing the whole point of Paul’s story and they are also bearing false witness against a dear brother in Christ. One of Paul’s friends commented to another person, “Your response to this book will tell me more about you than about the book.” Here’s an outline of the interviews:
Episode 1 (28 minutes): They talk about Paulâ€™s book, how it came about, that the very nature of relationship is imbedded in the Trinitarian character and nature of God, how theologies of separation from God create performance-based religion, and the question of whether anything really did happen when Jesus Christ came to live inside of us.
Episode 2 (30 minutes): In this second interview they discuss the popular view of God as a Christianized Zeus or Gandalf-with-an-attitude as opposed to the loving Father portrayed by the â€œprodigalâ€™s fatherâ€ or Papa in The Shack, some of the objections people have raised to The Shack, the unity and diversity of the Trinity, the truth of the wrath of God, legalismâ€™s expectations and some personal reflections.
Episode 3 (35 minutes): Paul Young points out the importance of knowing Godâ€™s character and nature to avoid the disconnect many people experience in trying to trust the â€œangryâ€ God who requires his sonâ€™s death and to avoid the mistaken notion that while Jesus is â€œgood,â€ God the Father is â€œmean.â€ They also note that Godâ€™s holiness existed before sin, so it is not a reaction to sin, and Jesus is the only road into the Fatherâ€™s heart.
Hope you are blessed by these interviews!
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