One Thousand Gifts By Ann Voskamp…a BIBLICAL REVIEW!

Don’t judge the book by the first few pages! One thousand Gifts will surely leave you with one thousand ways of acquiring BAD, UNSOUND Theology and an erroneous and dangerous view of God, our Creator!

I messed that one up. Lack of discernment in doing my homework to say the least. I am talking about Ann Voskamp’s book One Thousand Gifts. I read and follow numerous bloggers (homemakers, christian mama’s) who endorse and rave about Ann’s book. So what do I think? These women are christian…this must be a sound book to read. Looking back at SOME of these blogs there is no sound theology anywhere to be found, other than a few verses thrown in each post. Sound doctrine? WHERE? Nowhere!

So I got a preview of Ann’s book…read the first few pages and I thought this was about her life story…maybe her testimony. AND THEN, I get a friend who suggests I look into the reviews because the book is full of positive confession thoughts. Hmmm. That raises a huge flag on the theological dept. of my brain! Positive confession is linked to mysticism. Mysticism is pagan and demonic in nature. So i ventured so check out a few reviews (after i had bought the book on my iPhone), yeah good time to read reviews, good one Laire!  What do I found overwhelmed me, surprised me and baffled me all at the same time. Questions raced through my mind… WOW, the panentheism is clearly evident in the pages of this book, I just had read the first few pages of the book and it starts with her life story so I hadn’t gotten to the mystic parts yet (thank God, I would have had to burn my iPhone! LOL). How does a christian get mixed in or caught up in this nonsense? How do they not see what the heck is severely wrong with this view and warn others? How do they endorse this book? Do these ladies not understand the kind of accountability they are under when they endorse things that are contrary to sound doctrine. If I would have continue to read this book, I would have come to the parts where an alarm would have sounded in my head and heart going “there’s something wrong with this! What the heck???!!!” I would have warned others… This book has not a lick of sound doctrine in it. The beginning story will capture you, lure you in and you feel like you can’t put the book down. It is FAR from biblically sound. The depiction of God in this book is nowhere to be found in the Bible. I do not recommend this book to anyone, moreover I recommend everyone STAY AWAY from it…as far as they can!

Here is a biblically sound review of the book by Bob Dewaay @ Romantic Panentheism. A Review of One Thousand Gifts.

“Panentheism teaches that God’s essence or being is in everything. This is not the doctrine of omnipresence (though it would affirm it). If God in His essence and essential being is found in everything, then there is nothing unique about Christ (which is precisely the New Age claim). Biblically, nature does not reveal God and His glory in the same way Christ does. Nature reveals God obliquely and only in a condemning, not saving, way. Christ reveals God in His divine nature and speaks God’s inerrant words. Jesus spoke inerrant, binding words that will be our judge on the last day (John 12:48). The moon does no such thing.

As an example of her panentheism, Voskamp describes an experience where she finds salvation by gazing at a full moon in a harvested wheat field:

Has His love lured me out here to really save me? I sit up in the wheat stubble, drawn. That He would care to save. Moon face glows. We are head to head. I am bare; He is bare. All Eye sees me (Voskamp: 115).

Her experience is described in salvific terms: “It’s dawning, my full moon rising. I was lost but know I am found again” (Voskamp: 118). She claims an “inner eye” that sees God in a panentheistic way: “If my inner eye has God seeping up through all things, then can’t I give thanks for anything? . . . The art of deep seeing makes gratitude possible” (Voskamp: 118). In Romans 1, “seeing” God through general revelation in a way that makes all humans culpable is true for all, not just special enlightened ones like Voskamp.

There are other troubling things about the claim that salvation can be found in seeing God in the harvest moon. One is that Voskamp implies that for her, “salvation” is being saved from an unhappy life filled with ingratitude. She never mentions God’s wrath against sin (she does mention sin but not in the context of substitutionary atonement). Another is that she completely confuses and merges general and special revelation. General revelation does not offer saving knowledge, whatever the meaning of her experience “chasing the moon” (her terminology). Yet another is that panentheism is implied here and throughout the book.”

By Bob Dewaay (Insert from Article above).

Other reviews I recommend reading is First John Four Five, One Thousand Gifts Review.

Apprising Ministries review of her Book.

I wrote a blog post  (A Warning to fellow Homemaker/Homeschooler Blogging Moms.)  on this issue of homemakers/homeschooler bloggers having no sound theology on their sites and it goes to show how when you lack sound doctrine you are able to read a bloom cover to cover and NEVER pick pagan mysticism up. Sad!

Note to mom bloggers: My suggestion…put your computer down, stop blogging about things that do not matter so you can be featured in other blogs and admired by other bloggers and PICK UP YOUR BIBLE. Once you have done that and have set your doctrinal views solely on the Word then start blogging again. With purpose…with substance and with sound doctrine. Having 10 million posts on how many dishes you do, how much you sacrifice and how you homeschool when you lack sound doctrine matters not. It doesn’t impress God and you aren’t making a real difference for the kingdom.

Behind every single BLOG, sound doctrine must be found….it is the backbone of life changing writing. Just because you have something to say doesn’t mean it’s worth saying. I am learning that the hard way. 🙂 Don’t trust anyone  you do not know (in character and doctrine) to do book reviews for you because they endorse it. Most christians today have no idea what the term “propitiation” means…or “limited atonement” much less spot unsound, pagan doctrine when they read it. They can’t spot unsound doctrine when they read it because they don’t spend enough time reading SOUND doctrine (the Word). How are people trained to spot false dollar bills? By studying the counterfeits? NO. By mastering the REAL bills so when a counterfeit one comes along they spot it easily. We run to too many books instead of THE BOOK which all other books MUST be filtered through. 🙂

John MacArthur warns about the emergent church… 

John MacArthur on the Emergent Church.

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About Disciple of Christ, Wife, Mommy of 5 blessings & NM Top Earner.

As a wife, homeschooling stay at home mom of 5 beautiful blessings, taxi, chef, doctor, philosopher etc, my life is full of adventures everyday. Most of the adventures lead me to find another lost piece of my identity concealed deep within my heart. I have always felt that there was more to life than just “making it through”. After 5 little ones (4 under 4 & in diapers), I lost all the pieces I had found along the way. I was left with thinking my identity was being a wife and mom. “This can’t be all there is to me!”, I reasoned. Who am I? What’s in my heart? Why do I thrive around beauty and my heart leaps for joy when experiencing something as simple as a sunset. A feeling like I am free, inside. My heart can breathe again as if it had been holding its oxygen all along. Did God make me like this, I wondered? I felt guilty for longing to let my heart be free once again. After all the picture we have of a “perfect” woman is one that is ALWAYS busy! Always volunteering, always giving of herself with never once a thought of the state of her inner being. That is why we lose our hearts. Vulnerability is not welcomed anywhere. Femininity in its purest form is frowned upon. Why? Because women are supposed to be tough! The kind of tough that is just wrong. We are trained to hide our vulnerability, along with our femininity, very early in life. The wounds we have received as little girls leave us reacting as women like that wounded little girl would: we retreat, we regress. The message we received? You can’t trust anyone! Your femininity and vulnerability is a weakness. Most of us walk through life “playing” or pretending to be someone we’re truly not. As adults, we make choices based on how we were programmed when we were young. The real us hides somewhere inside, waiting to be rescued. Like a wounded animal hiding from its master, wanting to trust and soar again, but so afraid of the uncertainty that awaits. The risk is not worth it, we think to ourselves. To be quite honest most of you have not found a safe place to be yourselves. Embarking on a quest to find the real you takes courage. God created you in His image. Adam bears the image of a warrior God. A man is supposed to tell the world, on God’s behalf, He will come through for you. Eve bears the image of a captivating God and her heart is made to show His beauty. A woman is supposed to tell the world, everything is ok. She is that calm & quiet spirit. Safety; a place of refuge and healing beauty. This is what our hearts long for; Eden. The place for which we were created. The place in our hearts we know we belong. I am just a simple girl on a quest to finding my heart. Not the way I was “shaped” by the world but the way God created me. I pray that this journey will be encouraging and uplifting to others. I am going on an adventure and invite you to come with me! I am very transparent because that is what this world needs! With all my love, Laire

Posted on March 1, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. I felt scared to reply to another post about this book saying I couldn’t get past the first couple of pages and couldn’t go to her blog. I thought maybe I was wrong because so many people love it, but I stayed strong and deleted it off kindle, I didn’t care that I’d already paid for it, I wasn’t going there. Tara.

  2. HI,
    This book was recommended to me by our Pastors wife at our mothers coffee group. I purchased the audio book as the premise sounded good to me. As I listened to the first chapter it felt wrong. The language was too romantic for what I thought was a christian motivational book but I could have gotten past that. Then some of the things she was thanking God for seemed…I don’t know..just a bit off. Like the beauty of a plate of grated cheese? Yes definitely give thanks to our Lord God for the provision of the cheese and His loving care but she seemed to obsess over the cheese itself. She appeared to miss the purpose of creation. To reflect God’s glory, not to BE it if that makes sense. It all just sounded wrong but I couldn’t pin it down. Then I searched for reviews and I’m glad I did as your article reflects my opinion. So I’m not being un-necessarily picky!
    Often, if you question popular christian literature/music/doctrine you are made out to be uptight and set on squashing the Holy Spirit. The bible says we are to be alert. 1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be watchful: your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour,
    – American Standard Version (1901)
    Thanks

    • Amen! Sometimes when we do our homework and are bent in being bereans we are called radical. I’m glad more Christians are waking up to the dangers of panentheism and contemplative prayer. So often when we speak against what people like Ann and Beth Moore teach we are seen as ” holier than thou”. I just care to be biblically accurate and for my doctrine to be as sound as possible for I will stand before God one day and account for what I know and taught. 🙂
      Blessings!
      Laire

  3. This is a real blessing to me. I have been wondering why I feel so uncomfortable about Ann Voscamps blog (even the name of it) and why I never wanted to read her book – when just about all my friends love it and give it to everyone they know. I asked my hubby and did a search – found that article on panenthiesm and your article. What a relief that i am not crazy and to be able to establish exactly what her errors are. Thanks for having the boldness to write this. I am going to be writing some letters to friends. 🙂

    • Sometimes when we are so radical for our faith and stand by sound biblical doctrine we start to feel a little crazy because just about every other Christian sees nothing wrong with these things. No wonder the church has become lukewarm yet we rejoice in the fact that God’s people are becoming more aware of the falsehood in the Christian community. Too many wolves dressed as sheep!
      Blessings dear friend!
      ❤ L

  4. reformed4christ

    Yeah thank you for sharing this before anyone else got sucked in and read something that was far from Biblical! 🙂

  5. is there a way to make your blog easier to read? the design behind the words makes it a terrible thing to keep track of. I am interested in the stuff you write but I am having great trouble with your blog design. 😦

  6. Oh no! I loved that book…Thanks for this…really. I guess I will be digging more before I read “Christian” books. I have never heard of panenthesim. Thanks for the heads up 🙂

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