Why Christians Should Stop Running Away from “The Shack”
Once again Christianity is in an uproar. This time, the cause is a movie based on the best selling book, “The Shack”. Christians are calling it heresy, saying that it should be avoided as if it were pornography and to that, I have to say, once again, Christians are overreacting. But Aaron, “The Shack” not only contains false doctrine, but gives a misinterpretation of God. Well, I’m not saying that it does or doesn’t, I’m saying it doesn’t matter.
If Christians shouldn’t go see “The Shack” then they shouldn’t go to church either. The amount of false doctrine and misinterpretations of God that may exist in this two hour film pale in comparison to the amount that is spoken from the pulpit on a weekly basis. What’s more dangerous—a movie that presents false doctrine as fiction or a pastor that presents false doctrine as truth? A Christian who avoids “The Shack” won’t be able to avoid the false doctrines and misinterpretations of God and they will undoubtedly come across it from the churches they attend, the worship songs they listen to, the books they read, and the speakers they listen to. Name whatever pastor, author, worship leader that comes to mind and it can be assured that they don’t possess a perfect doctrine. Yet, if I told you to stop going to their church, reading their books, or listening to their songs, you’d say I was being unfair.
A Christian who is getting their faith from a movie is no different from a Christian who is getting their faith from a church. False doctrine shouldn’t sway a Christian, whether it comes from a movie or the pulpit, because every Christian should hold up every sermon they hear, book they read, worship song they listen to next to the Bible to see if it checks out. Instead of encouraging our Christian friends to not see “The Shack” we should encourage them to read their Bibles daily, because that is the only protection we as Christians have against false doctrine.
Again, “The Shack” is fiction, but what is not fictional is the positive impact the film can have on non-believers who see it. A Christian movie that portrays God as a black woman, Jesus as a middle eastern carpenter, and the Holy Spirit as an Asian woman shows the world that not all Christians are close minded as it likes to think. This alone will draw many non-believers to the film, meaning that they voluntarily will expose themselves to Christ. And, any exposure to Christ is good exposure. Another positive is the underlying message of the film that is being grossly overlooked, which is healing from your past only happens after you face your past. Until the main character returned to the shack—the site of his sizable hurt—he was he able to heal from it. We all have a shack that we need to go back to in order to find healing. So, maybe Christians should stop avoiding “The Shack” and start returning to it.