I was happily working on my (long promised) series on the deity of Christ when something came into my inbox that could not be ignored. It was brought to my attention that a ladies’ ministry group, to which I have connections, was going to be drawing from Timothy Keller’s book Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God for a day of prayer event. While I was not personally familiar with Mr. Keller’s work, I remembered reading articles about him that were not all positive. However, I couldn’t remember the specifics. It’s not easy to remember all of the details about all of the pastors/teachers/authors out there! Since my recollection about the specifics of Mr. Keller’s beliefs was vague, I did a background check online to see what was what. Thankfully, it is easy to get reacquainted or informed.

A “background check” is what I have long called the research that I do to learn about the teachings and practices of various Christian groups/pastors/teachers/authors. It is a process of testing for biblical soundness. These checks are indispensable, especially if the group or person you are looking into is new to you. I encourage you to be discerning and test all by the word of God. If you have used or plan to use Mr. Keller’s material and have not yet done a background check on him, I highly recommend doing one. There are a lot of good articles online that discuss not only his views on prayer, but also other aspects of his teachings. And I know I say this all the time, but please pray for discernment. It is truly needed here. People have been sounding an alarm about Mr. Keller for years, yet many are unaware or are not listening. (Learn how to do a background check)

In my research, I found a mix of positive and negative opinions about Mr. Keller’s beliefs in general and about his book Prayer specially. The negative ones raised enough concern in me that I ordered his book, so I could check things out for myself. I jumped into the book and discovered that many of the concerns were valid, and I found more.

As I read through Prayer, I took notes. I soon realized that I needed to share what I found, both with the above mentioned ladies’ ministry group and on my ministry’s website. I ended up with pages and pages of notes, and there could have been more. Since my report is long, I decided not to post it in my blog. Instead it is on a standing page that will be easier to find in the future. The link is below.

If you have read Mr. Keller’s book, plan to, or know someone who has read his book please take a look. I pray my report will be of service.

Now back to writing my deity of Christ series… Lord willing, there will be no more stops on the road before I am done.

“The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9)

A look at Timothy Keller’s book Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God

For those unfamiliar with Mr. Keller, here is part of his bio from the Gospel Coalition’s website:
“Tim Keller (MDiv, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary; DMin, Westminster Theological Seminary) is founder of Redeemer Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Manhattan, chairman of Redeemer City to City, and vice president of The Gospel Coalition.” The Gospel Coalition

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  1. Sharon, thank you for your thorough research into Timothy Keller’s book. As you know, I do appreciate many of his writings. I do, however, recognize some of the difficulties you have so carefully outlined. This took a lot of time for you, and although I have read your article, I will need to re-read and break it all down. Still, the general gist has been clearly pointed out. You have been able to capture so much that could easily go unnoticed.

    1. You’re welcome, Amanda. Thank you for taking a close look at this. There is a lot to consider. It is my hope that the article serves to help readers be aware of the problems areas, so that they can read more carefully.

  2. Sharon, this is a good review and I agree with your assessment. I would like to email you with some editorial issues. Can you give me your email? Thanks, jan

    1. Sharon Lareau

      Hi Jan, Thank you. On my Contact page, there are a number of options available. You can find a link to it in the footer section below.

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