Review: Lies We Believe About God by Wm. Paul Young

lies-we-believe-about-godLies We Believe About God
by Wm. Paul Young

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Source: ARC – Netgalley, Atria Books


From the author of the twenty million plus copy bestselling novel The Shack and the New York Times bestsellers Cross Roads and Eve comes a compelling, conversational exploration of the wrong-headed ideas we sometimes have and share about God.

Wm. Paul Young has been called a heretic for the ways he vividly portrays God’s love through his novels. Here he shares twenty-eight commonly uttered and sometimes seemingly innocuous things we say about God. Paul exposes these as lies that keep us from having a full, loving relationship with our Creator.

With personal anecdotes and sharing the compassion readers felt from the “Papa” portrayed in The Shack—soon to be a major film starring Octavia Spencer, Sam Worthington and Tim McGraw—Paul encourages readers to think anew about important issues including sin, religion, hell, politics, identity, creation, human rights, and helping us discover God’s deep and abiding love.

My Review:

5+ of 5 Stars

I have so many feelings and thoughts about this book that it’s hard to organize them all to write an understandable review. When I finished reading this my first impulse was to find someone, anyone who knows the bible better than I do to discuss the ideas with. Days after reading this, I still have that urge to pick apart each chapter’s theme – and I most likely will at some point in the future. What I enjoyed most about this book was how it made me think about my faith in an entirely new way. I openly admit that my faith isn’t as strong as I’d like it to be. I’ve dealt with the negative side of the Christian church numerous times which in may ways has made my current walk harder.

Another point for this book was how accessible it was, even for someone who isn’t well versed in scripture. A lot of Christian nonfiction that I’ve read has gone over my head because it heavily references concepts that I just don’t understand. In this book, each chapter is devoted to a different lie that is commonly believed or practiced in the church as a whole. What I appreciated was how the author was able to take these themes and bring out examples in his own life as well as easily understood support directly from the bible. I never felt like I was trying to decode anything, it felt simple yet profound.

For me, my favorite takeaway from the whole book that I keep thinking about even days after reading is how God loves me because I am loveable. This confused me at first because frequently I’ve heard some semblance of the message that “God loves us because HE is loving.” While I do believe in a loving God, for me it’s incredibly moving to think that it’s not just because God is good that he loves me, but because I am good and worth loving. Through the book I had moments like this numerous times when I had to sit back and ponder how looking at something slightly differently could change my relationship with God entirely.

Needless to say, I highly recommend this book. Even those who aren’t Christian but interested in faith might be able to get something out of this book. I’m looking forward to reading the book again in the future and really examining each chapter in depth.


4 thoughts on “Review: Lies We Believe About God by Wm. Paul Young

  1. Instead of reading what someone writes about the bible read the bible. He takes one verse out of context to make his points. If you don’t know scripture it is easy to be deceived. The crazy thing about being deceived is you don’t know your being deceived. I strongly urge you to read your bible and see if what this author writes in his book holds up. I think you you will find that it is a resounding no.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m interested to know which verse you are referring to so that I can compare more easily. I’ve always believed that the Bible can be interpreted in many different ways, especially if the person doing so has some preconceived idea going in that they want to be confirmed with evidence. There are many things we simply can’t know for sure, it’s all up to perception. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!


      • Let me start this way. Wm Paul Young believes in universalism but in Matthew 7:13-14. This is Jesus talking 13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wideis the gateand broad is the road that leads to destruction and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gatethe gate and narrow is the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” Those two verses squash the universalism. Not everyone is going to find life after death on earth. I understand your hurt from the past from churches and people in the church. There is a lot of hate in the church and it is unfortunate cause we are commanded to love. To change who God is to make him more likeable is to me walking on a slippery slope. We live in a fallen world where not everything is perfect and great. But we can find peace in our relationship with Christ even in a messed up world. Although it is kind of a pain trying to talk through a review part of the website about something so important I would be more than happy to continue to do it. Like I said in my first reply stay in your bible that is a great way to spend time with God to get know who he is better. God can not lie and never changes will he is. And pray before and after you read. Read one of the 4 gospels or the book of Acts. The best way to learn is to let God show you not me or an author. Trust that the Holy Spirit will guide you.


  2. I’m sorry I didn’t reference the verse the the author used in the chapter to make his point on universal salvation. He used one verse that really doesn’t sufficiently explain his point. He referenced John 12:32 which says “And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to me.” There is no doubt that God love’s everyone of us just as we are. Jesus died for everyone but not everyone is going to come to believe in Christ. To say off this one verse that everyone no matter what is saved just doesn’t make since with the verse I sent earlier.


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