Who is Tim Keller?
Tim Keller (1950 - present) is an American Christian apologist, author, speaker, and the founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, New York.
He is the author of several books, including The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism, which garnered awards from World Magazine and Christianity Today and was No. 7 on The New York Times Best Seller list for non-fiction in March, 2008.
Keller was raised in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania. He is a graduate of Bucknell University (BA, 1972), Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (M.Div., 1975) and Westminster Theological Seminary, where he received his D.Min in 1981. He became a Christian while at Bucknell University, due to the ministry of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, with which he later served as a staff member.
He was ordained by the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) and served as a pastor in Virginia for nine years, while serving as director of church planting for the PCA. He also served on the faculty of Westminster Theological Seminary, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he and his wife Kathy were involved in urban ministry and he continues as an adjunct professor of practical theology.
Keller was asked by the PCA to start Redeemer in 1989 despite his relative lack of experience and after two others had turned down the position. The church grew from 50 people to a total attendance of over 5,000 people each Sunday as of 2008, leading many to call him "the most successful Christian Evangelist in the city."
In 2004 Christianity Today praised Redeemer as "one of Manhattan's most vital congregations", and, according to a 2006 survey of 2,000 American church leaders, is the 16th most influential church in America. His target audience consists mainly of young urban professionals, whom he believes exhibit disproportionate influence over the culture and its ideas.
In his preaching, "he hardly shrinks from difficult Christian truths, [but] he sounds different from many of the shrill evangelical voices in the public sphere." He shuns the label "evangelical" because of its political and fundamentalist connotation, preferring to call himself orthodox because "he believes in the importance of personal conversion or being 'born again,' and the full authority of the Bible."
Stance on social issues
Tim Keller is a signatory of the Manhattan Declaration and has been described by Mark DeVine as a "doctrine-friendly" pastor noted for his opposition to homosexuality and abortion.
Keller believes that "Marriage provides the personal growth that comes through cross-gender relationships" and was quoted by Gay City News as saying "Homosexuality, prostitution, sex outside of marriage, and adultery all fall outside of what God says he has designed sex for." He considers his opposition to abortion as a matter of human rights, but is not opposed to contraception.
Keller is a complementarian who believes that the Bible teaches male headship in the home and in the church. On creationism, Keller states has his view is not strictly literal and that evolution is "neither ruled in nor ruled out" in his church. Keller's support for the Harry Potter novels has been controversial with "a small but vocal group of people".
Keller is a co-founder of The Gospel Coalition, a group of Reformed leaders from around the United States.
Keller lives on Roosevelt Island in New York City with his wife, Kathy. They have three sons, David, Michael and Jonathan.
- "Tim Keller" Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (with minor edits), under GFDL.