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The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism [Paperback]

By Timothy Keller (Author)
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Item description for The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism by Timothy Keller...

Arguing that most Americans are members of the Christian faith, a response to promoters of science and secularism addresses key questions about suffering, exclusivity, and the belief that Christianity is the only true religion. Reprint.

Publishers Description
A "New York Times" bestseller people can believe in--by "a pioneer of the new urban Christians" ("Christian Today magazine").
Timothy Keller, the founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, addresses the frequent doubts that skeptics and non-believers bring to religion. Using literature, philosophy, anthropology, pop culture, and intellectual reasoning, Keller explains how the belief in a Christian God is, in fact, a sound and rational one. To true believers he offers a solid platform on which to stand against the backlash toward religion spawned by the Age of Skepticism. And to skeptics, atheists, and agnostics he provides a challenging argument for pursuing the reason for God.
The remarkable "New York Times" bestseller by the "C.S. Lewis for the 21st century" ("Newsweek").
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Item Specifications...

Studio: Riverhead Trade
Pages   310
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.9" Width: 5.1" Height: 1"
Weight:   0.6 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 1, 2009
Publisher   Penguin Group USA
Age  18
ISBN  1594483493  
ISBN13  9781594483493  

Availability  19 units.
Availability accurate as of Sep 26, 2017 10:38.
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More About Timothy Keller

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Timothy Keller was born and raised in Pennsylvania and educated at Bucknell University, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and Westminster Theological Seminary. His first pastorate was in Hopewell, Virginia. In 1989 he started Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City with his wife, Kathy, and their three sons. Today, Redeemer has nearly six thousand regular Sunday attendees and has helped to start more than three hundred new churches around the world. He is the author of The Songs of Jesus, Prayer, Encounters with Jesus, Walking with God Through Pain and Suffering, and The Meaning of Marriage, among others, including the perennial bestsellers The Reason for God and The Prodigal God.
Katherine Leary Alsdorf worked twenty-five years in the high-tech industry as an economic analyst and in various executive leadership positions. After her CEO roles at One Touch Systems and Pensare, Redeemer Presbyterian Church recruited Katherine to lead the church's efforts in marketplace ministry, now called the Center for Faith & Work, which has grown to serve more than two thousand people a year. Katherine has served on the boards of the International Arts Movement, the Fellowship for the Performing Arts, and the Theology of Work Project.

Timothy Keller has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Center Church

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1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Apologetics
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Spirituality > General

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Books > Theology > Theology & Doctrine > Apologetics

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Reviews - What do customers think about Reason For God?

A Humble and Reasoned Look at Faith and ... Other Faith  May 8, 2009
I thought I had read all manner of apologetics, but this book adds fresh, new ways of addressing and discussing today's complaints about Christianity.

It's interesting to read his accounts of conversations he's had with people who have issues with Christianity. These encounters show how to encourage further thought and discussion in a gentle and respectful way, yet not diminishing the necessity to present good arguments. Think Christians are narrow-minded for believing in hell? How about a thought experiment involving a cookie to challenge that notion? Keller takes reason very seriously but presents his responses with brevity and clarity.

Christians and non-Christians alike who are willing to question themselves and their beliefs will benefit from this examination of questions like "How can you say Christianity's the only true religion?" or "How can a loving God send people to hell?" I urge all pastors and youth workers to include this book in planning for sermons and especially lessons for the young people ready to go off to college. This book will teach them to think when encountering these questions, which have been asked countless times by believers and non-believers alike. Here, both will be challenged to look at the world - and God - in a fresh and coherent way.
Some Good Points Overshadowed by Mostly Straw Men  May 7, 2009
There are a ton of reviews for this, so I will keep this short, in the hopes that someone might actually notice its brevity and glean a bit from it. Here goes.

Keller writes fairly conversationally, implements a fantastic range of quotations from a handful of authors, and, in a few chapters, actually makes a point or two worth noting.

Keller produces enough straw men to populate all the world's fields, his logic is poor at best and disingenuous at worst, and his rehash of old arguments does little for those accustomed to this familiar refrain.

Unfortunately, for me, the bad outweighs the good in this one. The title is presumptuous given the actual content, and his conclusions are rarely supported by his "evidence." He uses 'then' and 'therefore' and 'must be' extensively, without giving substantial reasoning in support of his claims, save for the rehash and rhetoric mentioned earlier. I would skip this one and read some of the authors he quotes instead, like Alvin Plantinga (see The Analytic Theist: An Alvin Plantinga Reader). Overall, it is intellectually unsatisfying, in my opinion.

I am not saying there aren't good reasons for believing in God (I do believe in God), and I'm not saying there aren't good reasons to believe in Christianity, but I am saying that whatever these reasons are, Keller is generally far from their mark.
Foundational Universal approach to the same ole' questions.  Apr 26, 2009
This is an excellent book. It is organized from a broad perspective of major religious views and compares with Christianities differences. Once establishing how the various religions approach God, salvation, life, morals, broad teachings it goes into the major precepts of Christianity, establishes why the particular fundamental teaching is necessary and compares how the other religions handle the same idea.

There are bigger books on apologetics but this one really hits the mark on points that *matter* in a do or die comparison.
Reason for God, a Reason to Look Into  Apr 24, 2009
Timothy Keller, an apologetics minister in New York gives a deep, thought provoking case for God using the laws of reason. If you claim you don't believe in God, think again.

With books like C.S. Lewis's Mere Christianity, and Lee Strobel's The Case for Christ, Timothy Keller's Reason for God serves as a top tier source for serious skeptics searching for the real God.

Timothy Keller makes you think with this book, so deep, that there is no reason to believe that there cannot be a God. I highly recommend it!
All Sets of Beliefs are Just Different Flavors of Koolade, So Drink Up!  Apr 21, 2009
The "Reason For God" updates the arguments made by C.S. Lewis in Mere Christianity by addressing the concerns of today's post-modern youth. A strength of this book is its good critiques of relativism, though as a nonbeliever I think he makes the wrong conclusion when he claims that the solution to relativism is theism. If I were a Christian, I'd definitely recommend it to young people with doubts. The book seems to be geared toward someone who had a Christian upbringing but began having doubts. I don't think he makes a strong case for belief in God for someone wo does not believe (probably because as far as I know, a strong case can't be made) so much as address the concerns of those who do already believe but have doubts.

He makes the strong point that we need to hold our beliefs we are choosing as alternatives to Christianity to the same standards we use in doubting Christianity, but he ends up making his case by arguing that since our beliefs can not generally be proven, that we are making "leaps of faith" all the time. He says, "All doubts, however skeptical and cynical they may seem, are really a set of alternate beliefs. You cannot doubt Belief A except from a position of faith in Belief B."

He's set up "belief based on faith" as in opposition to "belief based on proof," which I don't think is the real issue. I would agree with him if he said "you cannot doubt Belief A except from a position of believing (rather than 'faith in') Belief B," but I can't see what is added to say that we must have FAITH IN Belief B unless he wants to say that belief in anything without proof is all he means by religious faith. Such a move reduces faith to simply be a synonym for belief since no beliefs (or at least very few of them) are thought to be conclusively proven. In effect he is saying that pretty much all beliefs are taken on faith. Can you prove conclusively that the earth is not only 10,000 years old? So, it's just faith then. Can the scientific method be used to justify itself? Then it's just faith. All our sets of beliefs are all just different flavors of Koolade, and Christianity tastes the best, so drink up!

Religious faith is not simply the "leap of faith" in believing that the sun will rise tomorrow even though we can't prove it will in advance. Proof is not the issue at all. The issue is whether or not we are basing our beliefs on evidence. We may never have complete and conclusive evidence to justify every belief, but making our best guess based on the available evidence is not what we generally mean by faith.

I think Keller is slippery in justifying the broad traditional view of faith as belief in someone else's account of someone else's revellation and fidelity to a religious tradition along with trust in God as if it were just another set of beliefs that we accept without proof by simply pointing out that we believe things without proof all the time. What we don't do is believe things without evidence all the time. We all generally want to think we have good reasons and evidence in support of our beliefs, but for some reason it is thought to be a virtue to believe in the absence of good reasons and evidence in one special category of beliefs, namely, religion, and we call that virtue, faith. See the oft cited "doubting Thomas" of John 20: "Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen Me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed."

In every other aspect of life, we would see it as a huge liability to not base our beliefs on evidence. Why should we make an exception for religious belief?However, Keller is doing his best to give his reasons for belief, so he is not making a straight-up appeal to faith in the way I've charaterized it. In most conversations I have with believers, we eventually reach a point where the believer admits her lack of evidence or good arguments and says something like, "that's why they call it faith." Keller never reaches such a point since his argument is that belief in Christianity is well-justified. I wonder what role he finds for faith if he believes that he really has made a good argument for belief in terms of evidence and reason. If we actually have good reason for God, why would we need faith?

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