By Warren B. Smith
As soon as you—all who know your potentials—can tell this vision on television, you will have begun your real work in the world.—The New Age “Christ”1
On the March 12, 2017 episode 5 of Restoring The Shack television series on the TBN Christian television network, Shack author Wm. Paul Young stated it is a “lie” to believe that God is “separate” from His creation.2 Invoking a vision that was reputedly given by God to friend and fellow author C. Baxter Kruger, Young described this alleged lie as the “lie of separation.” But as a former New Ager, I recognized what Young was calling the “lie of separation” was in and by itself a lie. What he was teaching had nothing to do with biblical Christianity and everything to do with the false teachings of the New Age/New Spirituality/New World view. In fact, what Young was attempting to convey to countless TBN viewers was the same thing I had been taught and was teaching when I was in the New Age—that there is “no separation” between God and creation because God is “in” everyone and everything.
But God is not “in” everyone and everything.3
As I read the Bible and came out of the New Age movement and saw through the God-“in”-everything deception, I came to understand how our Spiritual Adversary had turned the Bible’s 2 Corinthians 6:17 instruction to “Be ye separate” into a bold lie that turned the whole notion of biblical separation upside down. Taking the word separation and using it in a wholly unscriptural context, false teachers like Wm. Paul Young are now bringing this New Age “lie” about separation and God “in” everything into the church through books like The Shack and on television programs like TBN’s Restoring the Shack.
The God “in” Everything Heresy
The heretical teaching that God is “in” everything and therefore not separate from creation, is the foundational lynchpin of the New Age/New Spirituality/New World religion.4 Incredibly, this heretical New Age doctrine is taught in The Shack. Wm. Paul Young’s “Jesus” falsely teaches that God is “in” everything when he states, “God, who is the ground of all being, dwells in, around, and through all things.”5 Most people reading The Shack do not understand that this statement made by Young’s “Jesus” is a New Age lie. Yet Young puts this occult saying right in the mouth of his “Jesus—a false “Jesus” who is “another Jesus” and not the real Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 11:4). Alert Shack readers will note that the word “Christ” can not be found anywhere—not even once—in Young’s whole Shack story.6 Inexplicably, the family cat in the story is named Judas7 but Young’s Jesus is never named Christ. Go figure.
The New Age Doctrine of Oneness
Because God was reputedly “in” everyone and everything, our New Age teachers taught us that we were all “One” and that our “Oneness” with God—our union with God—pervaded everyone and everything. We were told that because there was this “Oneness,” there was no separation between God and creation. And so it was this concept of “Oneness” that singularly expressed our New Age belief in the universal divinity of all things. It seemed very logical. We were all One because we were all in union with God because God was “in” everyone and everything. We honestly believed that a universal acceptance of this universal teaching would bring universal peace. We sensed that humanity was beginning to “awaken” and “shift” into accepting this emerging concept of universal Oneness. We believed if this New Age/New Spirituality/ New World view was universally embraced, it could save the world. Contrarily, those who refused to subscribe to this emerging worldview of Oneness—God “in” everyone and everything—would majorly hinder and ultimately prevent the attainment of this otherwise realizable goal of world peace. The New Age “God” and Christ”—channeling through designated New Age leaders—emphatically stated that the only people who stood in the way of world peace were those who believed in the “illusion of separation.” Wm. Paul Young claiming to quote “God” calls it the “lie of separation.” But what New Age leaders and Wm. Paul Young were teaching about separation was an “illusion” and a “lie.”
Doctrine of Separation
The New Age lie about Separation was cunningly devised by the father of lies to isolate, denigrate, and persecute those who believe that God is, in fact, “separate” from His creation and is not “in” everyone and everything. To not believe that God is “in” everyone and everything is to not believe that everything is connected and divine and “One.” To not believe that God is “in” everyone and everything is to not believe in “Oneness.” To not believe in “Oneness is to believe in “the lie of separation.” It is all a very seductive and devilish New Age trap. And the false New Age Antichrist/“Christ” warns that—were he to gain world power—the consequences for those who refuse to believe that God is “in” everything will be extremely severe.
Oneness vs. Separation
Thus, from a New Age perspective, “Oneness vs. Separation” juxtaposes two prevailing but opposing worldviews against each other. “Oneness” is being hailed as the loving and spiritually correct worldview that will produce world peace and a happy humanity. Contrarily, separation is described as the spiritually incorrect and hateful worldview that hinders world peace and produces a fearful and divided humanity. As seen in the quotes below, the New Age “Christ” makes his bold case for “Oneness” and threatens those who subscribe to the “hatred” of separation. He states:
The recognition of God is the recognition of yourself. There is no separation of God and His creation.8
The oneness of the Creator and the creation is your wholeness, your sanity and your limitless power.9
Let us together show the world: that the need for war is past; that the instinct of man is to live and to love; that hatred is begotten of separation.10
I shall drive from this Earth forever the curse of hatred, the sin of separation.11
Satan is Separation?
In the New Age, we didn’t believe in a real Satan. The only thing “satanic” was to not believe in the divine “Oneness” of all creation. The only “Satan” were those who were under “the illusion of separation”—those who did not believe that God was “in” everyone and everything. The New Age “God” and “Christ” equate Satan and the Devil with biblical Christians who refuse to subscribe to the Doctrine of Oneness. Biblical Christians then become conveniently and diabolically categorized as being into “separation.” The New Age “God” and “Christ state:
The mind can make the belief of separation very real and very fearful, and this belief is the “devil.” 12
When at last you see that there is no separation in God’s World—that is, nothing which is not God—then, at last, will you let go of this invention of man which you have called Satan.13
Your triumph over Satan, that is, over the illusion of separation, will be a victory for the universal community.14
Thank God I was ultimately shown that He is not in everyone and everything. His Holy Spirit is sent and dwells within those who repent of their sins and know and confess that the true Jesus Christ died on the cross to save us from our sins. I came to realize that God “in” everything “Oneness”—not separation—was the real lie. But most Christians watching Wm. Paul Young on the fifth episode on his TBN Restoring the Shack television series probably had no idea that the “lie of separation” he introduced on that program was totally fraught with New Age meaning and spiritual danger.
Dam Vision/Damnable Heresy
On the March 12th, 2017 fifth episode of Restoring the Shack, Wm. Paul Young used the same spiritual terminology that parallels and directly dovetails with the heretical New Age Doctrine of Separation. He tried to make his case for “the lie of separation” by recounting what friend and fellow author C. Baxter Kruger said he was shown in a vision/visual from the “Lord.” Young stated:
And Baxter had a visual and he was looking at this massive mountain range and he could see a beaver dam that was big enough to block the entire Mississippi—massive—and he asked the Lord, “What is that?” And he heard the response inside his heart, “That is the lies of pastors and theologians and the institutional church system that has been damming up the rivers of living water in the western world.” And Baxter was looking at the very bottom where these huge monster redwoods—and there was one at the center of the bottom and Baxter said, “What is that?” And he heard, “That Baxter is the lie of separation. The western world has convinced itself that it has separated itself from God. There has never been separation. That is absolutely a myth. You take that one out and the whole beaver dam will start to crumble.” Because for a lot of us, the gospel was about separation. That was the assumption.15
Young told his countless TBN viewers that C. Baxter Kruger’s vision came from the Lord—that it was the Lord who told Kruger that the “lie of separation” had undermined the true gospel and dammed up “the rivers of living water in the western world.” But the One True Lord God would never present this heretical New Age concept—much less use the same separation terminology used by the false New Age “God” and “Christ.” What Baxter Kruger saw and heard in his vision and that Wm. Paul Young passed on to TBN viewers was not from the Lord. Absolutely in no way. Having come out of the New Age movement with all its spiritual deception, I learned the hard way that voices purporting to be “the Lord” are often “seducing spirits” bringing “doctrines of devils” like the doctrines of “Oneness” and “Separation” (1 Timothy 4:1).
There is a Deceiver, and the Bible warns us to “believe not every spirit but to try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1). The voice Kruger heard taught the same thing the false New Age Christ taught us in the New Age about separation. Kruger’s alleged vision from “the Lord” with its “lie of separation” was exactly what the apostle Peter was warning about when he said there would be “false teachers among you” who will bring in “damnable heresies.” What irony that it was a “dam” vision that brought in the “damnable” heresy:
But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies. (2 Peter 2:1)
It is also ironic that it is “Oneness”—not separation—that is the” damnable heresy.” It is not the “lie of separation” but rather Wm. Paul Young’s lie about separation. It was the lie about separation that C. Baxter Kruger passed along to Young who then passed it on to countless TBN viewers. Knowingly or unknowingly, Wm. Paul Young was now teaching Christians on Christian television what the New Age “God” and “Christ” has been teaching the world for the last fifty years.
Same Separation Language
It is important to note the obvious similarities between the “lie of separation” concept Young and Kruger attribute to “the Lord” and the New Age separation concept. The following are several examples of what the New Age “God” and “Christ” have previously stated about separation:
A sense of separation from God is the only lack you really need correct.16
The only solution is the Ultimate Truth: nothing exists in the universe that is separate from anything else. 17
This is your assignment. This is your work. You are to destroy the illusion of separation.18
Separation and Young’s “Great Sadness”
The New Age “Jesus” states that sickness results from believing you are “separate” from God. Healing—according to this New Age “Jesus,” Wm. Paul Young, and C. Baxter Kruger—comes from recognizing the “lie of separation” and seeing and believing in “Oneness” instead:
A sick person perceives himself as separate from God. Would you see him as separate from you? It is your task to heal the sense of separation that has made him sick.19
Sadly, ironically, and tragically, Wm. Paul Young’s Shack “therapy” for his own “Great Sadness,” for his Shack characters, and for humanity is the same heretical New Age healing offered to us by the New Age “God” and “Christ” through their channeled New Age teachings. Young and Kruger would have the church “awaken” from the “lie of separation” and “shift” into seeing that God is at “One” and in “union” with everyone and everything. But their Shack therapy is an Antichrist/false Christ New Age therapy. It is not from God.
C. Baxter Kruger
For those not familiar with C. Baxter Kruger, he is a self-described Mississippi theologian who is the Director of Perichoresis Ministries and the author of nine books that include The Shack Revisited. Some of his many joint speaking appearances with Young are easily found on the Internet. In his introduction to The Shack Revisited, Wm. Paul Young writes that Kruger’s book will help the reader to better understand the “perspectives and theology that frame The Shack.”20 While Kruger’s account of the beaver dam vision and the “lie of separation” don’t appear in The Shack Revisited, they do show up in Kruger”s 2016 book Patmos.
In Patmos, Aidan, “a burned-out, suicidal theologian” from Mississippi, time travels to the first century and lands in a cave with the apostle John. Kruger cleverly puts his own words and theology in John’s mouth—much like Young did with “Papa,” “Jesus,” and “Sarayu” in The Shack. By the end of his novel, Kruger has the apostle John sounding more like an apostate John—most especially when it comes to a conversation Aidan and John have regarding separation. After Aidan tells John how he had to “escape the twin clutches of fundamentalism and modernism,”21 Kruger’s apostle John tells him,“There is only one battle”—“Union or separation.”22 He tells Aidan that the world’s problems all revolve around one crucial matter—“Ourselves and our ideas about separation from God.”23 Kruger’s “apostle John” contrasts the Oneness of believing that Jesus is “in” everyone with the “lie” of separation that denies Jesus is “in” everyone. Kruger’s “John” gives the time-traveling Aidan the following New Age message:
[The] lie of separation from God is the chief of all lies. It may be like a mother spider with a thousand babies on its back, but there is only one mother spider.24
Dear brother, either Jesus is in us or we are separated from him.25
At one point, Aidan asks the apostle John, “This mess, this historical quagmire of religions, wars, abuses, lust, and fear, all grows out of a single untruth?”
John answers, “Indeed my son . . . The lie that we are separated from Jesus and his Father.”
To which Aidan comments, “So in your gospel and letters, you’re trying to help us see through the lie of separation.”26
In another exchange, John tells Aidan, “The assumption of separation is the great darkness.”27 Never referring to Satan as Satan, but only as “Ophis,” John warns:
This is Ophis’s chief trick—blind us to how close the Lord is, closer than breath: we’re in him, and he’s in us. Ophis deceives the nations by one lie—separation. 28
Thus Kruger—by putting his own words in the apostle John’s mouth—has John teaching what the New Age has been teaching for decades. And that is that there is no separation between God and creation because God is “in” everyone and everything. But what Kruger is teaching is not true and is not from God. He and Wm. Paul Young are not exposing the deception—they are a part of it. The lie that is in the process of actually deceiving the nations and deceiving the church is “Oneness”—God “in” everyone and everything.
Talks Like New Age
The parallels between what the New Age is saying about Oneness and separation and what Kruger and Young are saying should be deeply disturbing to anyone who loves the truth. And while Young and Kruger would probably deny that man is God and that what they are teaching is New Age, it is a simple matter of semantics. A rose by any other name is still a rose. And a “God” who “dwells in, around, and through all things”29 and is not separate from creation is still a false unbiblical New Age “God.”
The Selection Process
The upshot of all this upside down, twisted teaching is that people may one day live or die based on what they believe regarding this cleverly contrived battle between “Oneness” and “Separation.” Or as Kruger puts it—“the battle” between “union or separation.” And that is because the false New Age Christ promises severe repercussions for those who insist on being “separate”—those who refuse to believe that God is “in” everyone and everything. This could fulfill the severe end-times persecution of the church described in the Bible but almost never talked about by false teachers like Young and Kruger.
The New Age Christ, while professing his love for all mankind, nevertheless warns there will be no place in the future for those who see themselves as “separate.” Consequently, this New Age Antichrist figure describes the necessity of a “selection process” that will select out and eliminate the resistant individuals who choose to remain “separate” as they oppose the New Age “Oneness” that falsely purports to heal and save the world. Through his chosen spokespersons, the New Age Christ has threatened those who choose biblical separation over New Age “Oneness”:
[T]he fundamental regression is self-centeredness, or the illusion that you are separate from God. I “make war” on self-centeredness.30
At the co-creative stage of evolution, one self-centered soul is like a lethal cancer cell in a body: deadly to itself and to the whole.31
The surgeon dare leave no cancer in the body when he closes up the wound after a delicate operation. We dare leave no self-centeredness on Earth after the selection process.32
I shall drive from this Earth forever the curse of hatred, the sin of separation.33
The crime of separation, of division, of lawlessness must go from the world. All that hinders the manifestation of man’s divinity must be driven from our planet. My Law will take the place of separation.34
“Be ye separate”
Thus, separation is a pernicious label that takes the biblical admonition to “Be ye separate” and turns it back on those who dare to separate themselves from the world and false New Age teachings like “Oneness.” Bible-believing Christians are to separate themselves from men like Wm. Paul Young and C. Baxter Kruger who indiscriminately mix truth with error and present false teachings to the church. Those who think they can eat some meat from The Shack and spit out the bones are sorely deceived. They may very well choke on the bones they failed to detect—leavened bones like the God who “dwells in, around, and through all things.” Leavened bones like the falsely alleged “lie of separation.” The apostle Paul makes the Bible’s position on the danger of unbiblical leaven very clear:
Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth? This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you. A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump. (Galatians 5:7-9)
Paul of the Bible warned about the Paul of The Shack when he provided the true scriptural take on separation—that we are to separate ourselves from men like Young and Kruger who give us some of the truth but not all of the truth; who please men with their cunningly devised fables (2 Peter 1:16) by putting their words and doctrines in the mouths of their fictional characters; who preach “another Jesus” and “another gospel”; who instead of positively teaching about the need for biblical separation, mimic New Age teachers who falsely teach that separation is “a sin,” “an illusion,” “a crime” and “a lie.”
Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord.”(2 Corinthians 6:17)
TBN Supports Young
The Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) continues to offer Wm. Paul Young a massive platform for his Shack book, Shack movie, and his 2017 book Lies We Believe About God where he openly affirms his belief in universal salvation35 and the New Age teaching that Christ is “in” everyone.36 Contrary to what most Christians believe, the New Age did not disappear but is now charging full steam ahead into the church through books like The Shack and into people’s living rooms through television programs like Restoring the Shack. In the meantime, the true Christ of the Bible warns us all to “be not deceived” by “false Christs” and “false prophets” with their signs and wonders that come in the form of best-selling books, Hollywood movies, and so-called Christian television. Christians need to understand that a false Christ Antichrist figure is preparing the world for strong delusion.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. (1 Peter 5:8)
For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. (Matthew 24:24)
1. Barbara Marx Hubbard, The Revelation: A Message of Hope for the New Millennium (Novato, California: Nataraj Publishing, 1995), p. 74.
2. Restoring the Shack television series, Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), 20 episodes that were originally broadcast from to July 9, 2017. (Restoring the Shack online at: https://www.tbn.org/programs/restoring-shack).
3. Warren B. Smith, Be Still and Know that You are not God: God is Not in Everyone and Everything (Eureka, MT: Lighthouse Trails Publishing, 2015; to read online, go to http://www.warrenbsmith.com, click booklets, click to read content of booklet; history and scriptural refutation of the false New Age teaching that God is in everything).
4. Neale Donald Walsch, Tomorrow’s God: Our Greatest Spiritual Challenge (New York: NY: Atria Books, 2004), pp. 31-32.
5. William P. Young, The Shack (Los Angeles, California: Windblown Media, 2007), p. 112.
6. Warren B. Smith, “The Christless Shack,” article posted at warrenbsmith.com.
7. William P. Young, The Shack, op. cit. p. 231. Warren B. Smith “A Cat Named Judas,” articled posted at http://www.warrenbsmith.com.
8. A Course in Miracles, Combined Volume [Text, Workbook for Students, Manual for Teachers] (Glen Ellen, CA: Foundation for Inner Peace, 1992), p. 147 (Text).
9. Ibid., p. 125 (Text)
10. Messages From Maitreya the Christ: 140 Messages (Los Angeles, CA: Share International, 2001), p. 108.
11. Ibid., p. 104.
12. A Course in Miracles, Combined Volume, op. cit., p. 50 (Text).
13. Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God: Book 3 (Charlottesville, VA: Hampton Roads Publishing Company, Inc., 1998), p. 56.
14. Barbara Marx Hubbard, The Revelation, op. cit. p. 193.
15. Restoring the Shack television series, Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), episode 5, March 12, 2017. Beaver dam discourse starts around the 19 minute mark. Transcribed by author.
16. A Course in Miracles, Combined Volume, op. cit., p. 14 (Text).
17. Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God: Book 2 (Charlottesville, VA: Hampton Roads Publishing Company, Inc., 1997), p. 173.
18. Neale Donald Walsch, Friendship with God: An Uncommon Dialogue (New York, NY: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1999), p. 21.
19. A Course in Miracles, Combined Volume, op. cit., p. 56 (Manual).
20. 9. C. Baxter Kruger, The Shack Revisited: There is More Going On Here Than You Ever Dared to Dream (New York, New York: Faith Words, 2012), p. ix.
21. C. Baxter Kruger, Patmos, Three Days, Two Men, One Extraordinary Conversation (Jackson, MS: Perichoresis Press, 2016), p. 90.
22. Ibid., p. 91.
24. Ibid., p. 93.
25. Ibid., p. 92.
26. Ibid., p. 93.
27. Ibid., p. 91.
28. Ibid., pp. 91-92.
29. William P. Young, The Shack, op. cit., p. 112.
30. Barbara Marx Hubbard, The Revelation, op. cit., p. 233.
31. Ibid., p. 255.
32. Ibid., p. 240.
33. Messages From Maitreya the Christ, op. cit., p. 104.
34. Ibid., p. 248.
35. Wm. Paul Young, Lies We Believe About God (New York, NY: Atria Books, An Imprint of Simon & Schuster, Inc., 2017), p. 118.
36. Ibid., p. 119.