If you’re like me, you want to know why you believe what you believe, and to be able to share it intelligently, and kindly, with others who disagree. Since its publication in 2008, Tim Keller’s “Reason For God” has really stood out to me as a simple, yet profound, tool in this area. It’s well worth a read (240 pages)!
At the same time, I’m writing (primarily) for busy healthcare students and professionals, so I wanted to share Keller’s book with you in a way that is helpful, but brief. And, it never hurts to have something to-the-point that you can refer to when you need it.
I’m not sure how long it will take me to get through these posts, but I will. The Introduction frames the book nicely, so I’ll start with that.
- both faith and secularism are on the rise in our culture, and these two “camps” often hold real animosity toward each other (ix)
- as a result, much of public discourse is at an impasse (xv)
- Keller recommends that we need to look at doubt in an entirely different way:
- believers need to acknowledge, and wrestle with, their doubts and those of their neighbors. (xviii)
- skeptics need to see that their own doubts are really sets of alternate beliefs. Apathy toward God and faith does not solve the problem because it assumes (= faith) that they are irrelevant unless they relate to our emotional needs
- if both “sides” take this approach, it will lead to a better understanding of one’s own position, while increasing respect for those who disagree (xviii)
- the book is divided into two halves:
- part one looks at the biggest objections to Christianity skeptics hold, and discerns the alternate set of beliefs behind them
- part two examines what lies behind traditional Christian beliefs (xix)
As you can see, I’ve included page numbers so you can refer to the book, learning more where you want to, and drawing your own conclusions. My hope is that we’ll all grow in understanding what we believe, and in presenting it in a way that’s attractive to those who are coming from a different perspective.