A weight-loss program that has been criticized for its controversial health practices now is drawing fire for the questionable theological views of its leader, whose publisher has shelved plans for her next book.Christians had earlier found fault with the Weigh Down Diet because it places no restrictions on what types of foods participants may eat (CT, Sept. 4, p. 50). Apologists and church leaders are now asking whether founder Gwen Shamblin holds heretical views of the Trinity, based on her comments on the Weigh Down Web site (see link below). Since 1992, Shamblin has taken her business from a garage start-up to a multimillion-dollar Nashville corporation. Her 1997 book The Weigh Down Diet has sold more than 1 million copies. There are 30,000 Weigh Down Workshop locations meeting weekly around the world, including in thousands of evangelical churches. Shamblin is scheduled to lead a one-day workshop Saturday on the campus of Wheaton College in Illinois. The controversy intensified after Shamblin posted a weekly e-mail communique to her followers on Aug. 10. "As a ministry, we believe in God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit," Shamblin wrote. "However, the Bible does not use the word 'trinity' and our feeling is that the word 'trinity' implies equality in leadership, or shared Lordship. It is clear that the scriptures teach that Jesus is the Son of God and that God sends the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit does not send God anywhere. God is clearly the Head."Since then, Shamblin has been removed from the Women of Faith Web site, several influential evangelical churches have dropped her program, and some key employees have left. On Wednesday, Thomas Nelson canceled publication of Shamblin's ...1
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