Though I am Don Carson’s elder (by eleven months), and count him a personal friend, I revere him both spiritually and academically. The level at which Don works in the academic guild is beyond my ability and bent. I stand outside and below, looking up with profound admiration and respect. Make no mistake, my admiration is not awakened by fame and notoriety. It rises for real excellence and faithfulness and usefulness. Don has taken the bricks and mortar of his academic trade and built structures where God’s people have found safety and nourishment and joy and power. [Read more…] about John Piper’s Tribute to Don Carson
Timothy Keller. Making Sense of God: An Invitation to the Skeptical. New York: Viking, 2016.
It’s a prequel to Keller’s The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism, a New York Times best seller and the modern version of C. S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity.
To learn why Keller wrote this prequel, read Matt Smethurst’s interview with Keller.
Then read Andrew Wilson’s review.
Then watch the talk Keller gave to employees of Google: [Read more…] about Making Sense of God: An Invitation to the Skeptical
Here’s what Tim Keller writes in an extended callout in Center Church: Doing Balanced, Gospel-Centered Ministry in Your City (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2012), 376–80:
All Christian movements must be based on commonly held biblical truths, and yet they must be characterized by trust and a willingness to unite around central truths and accept differences on secondary matters that—in the view of ministry partners—do not negate our common belief in the biblical gospel. On the one hand, we must realize that if we are going to maintain a healthy movement over time, we have to engage in direct discussion about any doctrinal errors we perceive. On the other hand, we must engage in such a way that we show great respect for the other party and aim to persuade them, not just punish them.
How can this be done? I suggest the following principles for “polemics”—contending over doctrine—that is seasoned in tone and strategy by the gospel itself. As I’ve read a number of respected Christian authors over the years, I have distilled a few “rules of engagement” that I believe can keep us from either avoiding polemics or engaging in it in a spiritually destructive way. [Read more…] about Tim Keller: 6 Principles for How to Argue When You Disagree
Timothy Keller. Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God. New York: Dutton, 2014.
This is probably the best overall book on prayer that I know of because it shrewdly addresses the issue from three angles:
- experiential or devotional
- methodological or practical
It seems like every book Keller writes is the best all-around book on that subject.
This chart is particularly helpful (p. 141):
I agree with Andy Davis’s review.
The following two videos each include the bold words “Here I stand.” But do they mean the same thing?
1. Elsa (from Frozen‘s “Let It Go”)
2. Luther (at the Diet of Worms)
Tim Keller explains how they differ:
“Let It Go,” by Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez, was sung in the Disney movie Frozen and won the 2013 Oscar for Best Original Song. It is both interesting and ironic to compare the sung speech of the character Elsa in Frozen with that of Martin Luther before the Holy Roman Emperor. Both say, “Here I stand.” But Luther meant he was free from fear and from other authorities because he was bound by the Word of God and its norms. Elsa speaks for the contemporary culture by saying she can be free only if there are no boundaries at all.
It’s probably the best overall book on suffering because it shrewdly addresses the issue from three angles:
As with Keller’s other books, this brims with wisdom from decades of fruitful pastoral ministry. [Read more…] about Walking with God through Pain and Suffering
Many modern readers assume that slavery in the New Testament is equivalent to the race-based slavery of the African slave trade. While not defending the Greco-Roman institution of slavery, Tim Keller and Don Carson explain why it’s important not to equate it with the race-based slavery that we may be more familiar with.
Paul is speaking to servants and masters [in Ephesians 6:5–9], and this raises many questions in the minds of modern readers about the Bible’s depiction of the evil of slavery. While much can be said about this subject,* it is important to remember that slavery in the Greco-Roman world was not the same as the New World institution that developed in the wake of the African slave trade. Slavery in Paul’s time was not race-based and was seldom lifelong. It was more like what we would call indentured servitude. But for our purposes, think of this passage as a rhetorical amplifier and consider this: If slave owners are told they must not manage workers in pride and through fear, how much more should this be true of employers today? And if slaves are told it is possible to find satisfaction and meaning in their work, how much more should this be true of workers today? [Read more…] about Keller and Carson: Greco-Roman Slavery ≠ Race-Based Slavery