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

Timothy Keller
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)

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Book Description

14 Feb 2008

At a time when scientists and critics such as Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens are questioning the validity of religion, this book uses literature, philosophy and reason to explain how faith in a Christian God is a soundly rational belief.Timothy Keller, pastor of an inner-city New York church, looks at some of the most widespread accusations levelled at Christianity, including Christianity's claim of exclusivity; how a good God could allow suffering; why the Church is responsible for injustice; and if science has disproved religious belief.

This book has been written for believers and non-believers, sceptics and churchgoers, and charts a brilliantly considered and impassioned path to Christianity - a Mere Christianity for the twenty-first century.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 293 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton Books; 1st edition (14 Feb 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525950494
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525950493
  • Product Dimensions: 23.5 x 15.9 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 419,452 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Timothy Keller is senior pastor at Redeemer Presbyterian Church, Manhattan: and New York Times bestselling author of The Reason for God. He is also author of Counterfeit Gods and The Prodigal God book, film, and discussion guide.

Product Description


In this apologia for Christian faith, Keller mines material from literary classics, philosophy, anthropology and a multitude of other disciplines to make an intellectually compelling case for God. Written for sceptics and the believers who love them, the book draws on the author's encounters as founding pastor of New York's booming Redeemer Presbyterian Church. (Publisher's Weekly)

Fifty years from now, if evangelical Christians are widely known for their love of cities, their commitment to mercy and justice, and their love of their neighbors, Tim Keller will be remembered as a pioneer of the new urban Christians. (Christianity Today magazine)

Tim Keller's ministry in New York City is leading a generation of seekers and skeptics toward belief in God. I thank God for him. (Billy Graham) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

An intelligent, intellectually rigorous examination of why the Christian faith still makes sense in an age of scepticism. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
DURING my nearly two decades in New York City, I've had numerous opportunities to ask people, "What is your biggest problem with Christianity? Read the first page
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
108 of 114 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Winsome, convincing, intelligent apologia 29 Feb 2008
By William Fross VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The Reason for God is one of the best books I have read on why Christian belief is true belief. It is an engaging essay on how and why a clear-thinking sceptic can take the Christian worldview seriously. It forces you to think about what you think about the world, not just what you don't agree with.

Keller's thesis is that no-one is a pure sceptic. Everyone believes things about the world and people and God. He believes that compared to the alternatives, Christian belief is the closest to the truth about things. Combined with this, he argues that everyone knows God exists, even if they don't admit it to themselves.

The first half of the book addresses common objections to Christian belief. The second half argues for the Christian worldview. There is an intermission halfway through which briefly considers other issues, like why beliefs differ between Christians and Christian denominations. The final chapter explains the implications of his argument for readers.

When I say this is one of the best books I have read, that's because it crosses boundaries in the same way that our own experience does. It has philosophical clarity, it asks us to consider our own experience, it looks to literature and art and science and the world to make things clearer for us.

If you have specific issues, such as questions about a particular philosophical argument, there are other, more comprehensive works dedicated to such things. But for most people this is the most competent overview of all the issues.

Like Mere Christianity by C.S Lewis (somewhat dated now), I would recommend it to sceptics for the reasons above, but also to Christians as an example of how to communicate what they believe clearly and compassionately.
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69 of 73 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Many reasons for reading Keller's REASON 23 April 2008
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book really deserves wide readership. So here are a load of reasons for getting hold of it and, more to the point, reading it!

* It is very readable - in fact it is basically a précis of countless conversations Keller has had with various archetypal Manhattan sceptics. The standard format is "X asked me this... and Y asked me that ..."; "and this is how I answered them...". So it is not exposition as such (a small point is that the book could have benefited from more explicit biblical material), but it is fair to say that it is thoroughly `bibline` (to use Spurgeon's great coinage about John Bunyan).

* The format is not accidental - because the aim of this book is to tackle all the big ones that people ask - or rather, all the big ones that sophisticated New Yorkers ask. So it may be that these are not necessarily the questions your friends are asking. So for example, the American political context (with its caricatures of `liberal left' and `religious/evangelical right') is such that it is necessary to say more about how the gospel transcends these boundaries - in our more secular European settings, the presenting issues are slightly different. But i would think that there are few questions out there that have not been addressed in some shape or form by this book.

* It is full of thought-provoking angles and arguments, and helps to put things on the front foot by exposing the flaws in current thinking. As a small snapshot, here is one example.
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32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading 4 Feb 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I bought this book without any particular expectations. I was put off by seeing it described as an 'apologia' for Christianity. Also words like 'evangelical' and 'born-again' are a big turn-off for me. I am moving from a lifetime of atheism towards faith and am reading widely to help me to develop my own (possibly idiosyncratic) system of belief. In the event I was pleasantly surprised. This is not a heavyweight book but it is intelligently written and helped me with some areas that I am having difficulty with. The author does at times resort to assertions which he does not sufficiently explain or back up but in spite of disagreeing with him in some areas it was a worthwhile read. I don't think that this (or perhaps any other) book will convert anyone to Christianity by the force of its arguments but then why should it? Its purpose and value is to help you with areas of difficulty and enable you to make up your own mind in a thoughtful way about what you believe.
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39 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone should read it 26 Nov 2008
Just like how I believe all Christians should read 'The God Delusion', all atheists should read this book, so that they know what they're talking about. There will be no greater challenge to you than to read this book, and no matter what your world view you need to challenge and question it from time to time. Furthermore, I honestly believe the majority of believers don't really understand what their faith is about, I thought I did until I read this.
I've never read a more coherent argument for the existence of God - read it, whether you believe or not.

In a word: watertight.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Weirdly enough I had to go to my very own highstreet outlet of Waterstones to find this book as the christian shops didn't have it in yet. I had been looking forward to reading this for a while and I certianly wasn't let down. If your looking for hard hitting apologetics this may not be what your looking for, however for the new believer or someone whom is interested in the claims of christianity this will do the job. This is certainly a book I wouldnt feel ashamed to give to a friend due to its honesty in tackling some tough questions and its well written pages. Could I be going to far in refering to it as the 21st centuries Mere Christianty? Good work Mr keller.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A very profound book. If you are a serious thinker about the meaning...
Timothy Keller argues rationally about a subject that appears at first glance to be an irrational topic for discussion. There's so much here that I plan to read it regularly!
Published 1 month ago by Thomas Galbraith
5.0 out of 5 stars Great - clear and concise writting
Very persuasive, well structured arguments. Very readable and each chapter largly stands by itself, so you can dip in and out of it if you're considering particular issues.
Published 1 month ago by Surfing Londoner
5.0 out of 5 stars Reasons for believing
An excellent book which deals with the most frequent questions and difficulties which people have with the Christian faith in a very gracious and logical way.
Published 1 month ago by Mrs J Keith
4.0 out of 5 stars Fact or poetry.
Mostly good well argued but weak on genesis1+2. Can God say what he means or do we have to guess?
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Great apologetics.
Deep questions are asked of and objectsions made with regard to the Christian faith.
Timothy Keller seems to be able to answer these calmly, logically and reasonably in a way... Read more
Published 2 months ago by RH
5.0 out of 5 stars Just right
Keller doesn't attempt to fight fire with fire. His argument against atheism is essentially - 'it's assumptive, arrogant and depressing'. Read more
Published 2 months ago by The Social-ist
5.0 out of 5 stars Answers all the questions most people have about Christianity.
Why does God allow war?
Why does God allow sickness?
Who is He?
How do I know the Bible is true?
Jesus was just a man? Read more
Published 3 months ago by Barbara E. Tippett-gant
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
Image five stars because I like the way Tim Keller explains difficult to understand issues in an easy to understand way. It is my kind of Book. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Sheena Lane
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it!
A fantastic book, very encouraging, and very much in the approachable, yet authoritative, style of much of Keller's writing - a fantastic read for anyone struggling to rationalise... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Nathan
3.0 out of 5 stars The reason for God
This is quite a tough book and not for everyone as the reasoning needs considerable theological background to make the most of it.
Published 4 months ago by Jane Hutton
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