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In an effort to provide good pastoral care for the flock of Emmanuel Baptist Church, I chose to read this book first hand before giving my official views and opinions. The story centers around a middle-aged man named Mack whose 6-year-old daughter was abducted and murdered by a serial killer while on a family camping trip in the Oregon wilderness. Mack struggles with this tragedy and his relationship with God has become very cold and distant.

It is there that he encounters God and learns to deal with his loss and understand the mysterious ways of God. As a writer, Young is engaging and talented. He has a poignant way of drawing the reader into the drama and is a very colorful storyteller. In the first few chapters that described this abduction, I was on the edge of my seat with both anticipation and a sense of dread knowing what would happen.

This is a warning for those who have not read it yet, that this portion is very intense. As a fictional novel, Young writes a colorful, compelling story with interesting characters and in where the main character Mack comes to a deeper understanding of God and his faith is strengthened at the end.

So as a narrative and a story, I have no problem. There are some helpful statements in this book, although they are few and far between. William Young takes a noble stab at explaining the problem of evil and how God works through that to accomplish His purposes. But…there is a subversive nature to this book.

It tells a compelling, exciting story about faith in God and Young makes it clear that this is fiction. Yet, when he begins to introduce the character and person of God and issues of faith and struggles within the realm of Christianity, he moves from fiction to theology. While most who read this will see it as a fictional story, there is a very clear message about God that Young wants to get across to his readers and he makes great pains to articulate a theology—albeit not in a textbook format but through compelling characters in a story.

I will come out right away and say that I will not endorse this book and will not recommend anyone to read it.

The God of That Summer - Novel

I found it disturbing and while not blatantly heretical, it does introduce views of God and faith that are opposed to orthodox theology and the clear teachings of the Bible. I would definitely not recommend it for a new Christian. If a Christian has the desire to read it, I would warn them strongly to use very sharp discernment and to weigh the opinions of William P. Young with that of Holy Scripture. That is between you and the Lord.

But as a pastor who cares about the spiritual growth of my flock and who has been charged by God to protect the flock from false teachings, I have a responsibility to clearly articulate my concerns in a way that his hopefully loving, but at the same time truthful. With that being said, I have SIX major problems with this book. I will attempt to interact with direct quotes, dialogue, and statements made in the book and compare these to direct quotations from Scripture. Throughout the book, seminary education is seen as negative as well as anything that has to do with the institutional church.

What do I mean by an unmediated encounter?

The God Cookie

God has always used a Mediator to speak to humans. In the Old Testament, it was Moses, Joshua, the priests, and the prophets. They represented God and they were the intercessors and mediators of the covenant. Your average Israelite could not just barge into the holy of holies and talk with God. He has always spoken to us with a mediator. It is in Scripture that we find truth, not in encounters in shacks out in the wilderness face to face with God. This is very close to Gnosticism. The second area of concern is the issue of breaking the 2 nd Commandment.

Now, I have nothing against good food or jazz music , but God the Father is Spirit. He does not have a body.

God Game (novel) - Wikipedia

Only Jesus is the visible and physical expression of an invisible God. Clearly, Young sees that having the Father inhabit an African-American woman would make a very colorful story. He is Spirit and does not have a body.

To him be honor and eternal dominion. When you study the 4 th and 5 th Chapters of Revelation, you see that the Father dwells in heaven on his throne and is surrounded by lightning, thunder, a glassy sea, and flying creatures who prevent anyone from having access to this holy God. In addition, the Holy Spirit is also Spirit. In this novel, the Spirit is personified by a whimsical Asian woman named Sarayu who floats around a lot and likes to garden.

Again, the Holy Spirit does not have a body. Jesus is the only Person of the Trinity who has a body. Now how does the Shack break the 2 nd Commandment? It has God the Father inhabiting a body as well as the Holy Spirit and this man Mack is in their presence without any fear, trembling, or concern. For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts! Not once does Mack bow down in front of the Trinity or express worship or homage in this type of way. He engages in folksy dialogue with the Godhead over tea, pastries, and other mundane things.

The Godhead that is described and illustrated in The Shack is not a God that is a consuming fire and holy. Jesus is a carpenter with a tool belt and flannel shirt who is unimposing. And the Holy Spirit is a wispy Asian woman who floats around and works in a garden. Another weird incident in the book occurs on page 95 where Papa shows Mack the scars on her wrists.

And if God does tell you something Meet Parrish. He's a regular guy, owns a coffee shop. He happens to be sh Would you know if he did, if God really spoke to you- would it be booming from the heavens or just in your head? He happens to be shooting the breeze with his buddies at the neighborhood Chinese buffet, talking about the dents in golf balls and such, when the discussion develops into a debate on whether or not God still speaks to people. When his friends skip out and he is left alone, Parrish tells God he's "all in.

Only moments later, back at his table, he opens his fortune cookie to find a surprise -- instead of a proverbial statement, he reads a directive from God. His quest sends him to the corner bus stop, where he finds a dropped and forgotten letter, written in a desperate tone, to help those God brings across his path. There, Parrish befriends Audra, a nursing student who rides the bus home.

And together they begin to follow the god cookie message, pursuing the random threads of the experiment, tying them together and discovering more about themselves than either ever imagined possible.

Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published February 17th by Waterbrook Press first published More Details Original Title. Other Editions 3.


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Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The God Cookie , please sign up. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Aug 03, Lisa Godfrees rated it really liked it Shelves: christian-fiction. I enjoyed this book. It was different, quirky. From reading the back blurb, I expected the MC to be running from one fortune cookie to the next doing some really crazy things under God's direction, but that's wasn't the case. Less fortune cookie direction, more waiting on God to act.

A lot like real life, actually, if you think about it. So parts of the book have great action, but other parts are slow and you're waiting for something to happen. This is why I gave the book 4 instead of 5 stars. The best part of this book was the dialog. Geoffrey Wood does a fantastic job of capture the crazy flow of conversations from one random thing golf balls to another God. The book seems to me a woman to be a fairly accurate depiction of how guys relate to one another.

I enjoyed it. I think you will enjoy it. If you've read it, I'd love to hear what you thought about it, so please comment! Aug 31, Jennifer added it Shelves: abandoned.