Getting Sanctification Done: The Primacy Of Narrative In Tim Keller’s Exegetical Method -- By: Timothy F. Kauffman

Journal: Journal of the Grace Evangelical Society
Volume: JOTGES 27:52 (Spring 2014)
Article: Getting Sanctification Done: The Primacy Of Narrative In Tim Keller’s Exegetical Method
Author: Timothy F. Kauffman


Getting Sanctification Done: The Primacy Of Narrative In Tim Keller’s Exegetical Method1

Timothy F. Kauffman

Huntsville, Alabama

I. Introduction

There is a person in the avant-garde Evangelical culture, whose name is a household name, whose books are ubiquitous on home, office and Christian retail bookshelves, who is quoted from the pulpit, in Sunday school classes, on church retreats, new membership classes, home Bible studies, small group fellowships, and science and political think tanks. His books are promoted on the “top shelf” at Christian and secular booksellers, both “click” and “mortar.” This person, Tim Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church, PCA, in New York City, hardly needs an introduction. His ever-present, congenial, gregarious personality endears him to his listeners, whether on Vimeo, YouTube, iTunes, or in the pews of New York. He is intelligent, well read and well studied, having received his Master of Divinity from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and his Doctor of Ministry from Westminster Theological Seminary. His ministry, Redeemer City to City—redeemercitytocity.com—is savvy, well organized, international and intercontinental, professional, and demonstrates a clear

grasp of the media rich mobile communication preferences of the now maturing digital generation.

In the last five years, he has released, among other books, The Meaning of Marriage (2008), Prodigal God (2008), The Reason for God (2008), Counterfeit Gods (2009), Generous Justice (2010), Gospel in Life Study Guide (2010), King’s Cross (2011), Center Church (2012), Every Good Endeavor (2012), The Freedom of Self Forgetfulness (2012), and most recently (at the time of this writing), Galatians for You (2013). His whitepapers are equally numerous: “The Centrality of the Gospel” (2001), “Creation, Evolution, and Christian Laypeople” (2009), and “What’s So Great about the PCA” (2010), to name a few. They are cited widely and authoritatively, and some congregations even model or shift their ministry, organization, focus, and operations based on his opinions. Tim Keller, to state the obvious, is simply an extremely influential personality on the evangelical stage.

I very rarely encounter someone who does not know of him and has not read or heard at least some of his materials. When a personality becomes so perv...

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