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The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God [Hardcover]

Timothy Keller
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Nov. 1 2011
Renowned pastor of New York’s Redeemer Presbyterian Church and author of the forthcoming Every Good Endeavor, Timothy Keller with his wife of 36 years, delivers The Meaning of Marriage, an extraordinarily insightful look at the keys to happiness in marriage that will inspire Christians, skeptics, singles, long-time married couples, and those about to be engaged.

Modern culture would make you believe that everyone has a soul-mate; that romance is the most important part of a successful marriage; that your spouse is there to help you realize your potential; that marriage does not mean forever, but merely for now; that starting over after a divorce is the best solution to seemingly intractable marriage issues. All those modern-day assumptions are, in a word, wrong.

Using the Bible as his guide, coupled with insightful commentary from his wife of thirty-six years, Kathy, Timothy Keller shows that God created marriage to bring us closer to him and to bring us more joy in our lives. It is a glorious relationship that is also the most misunderstood and mysterious. With a clear-eyed understanding of the Bible, and meaningful instruction on how to have a successful marriage, The Meaning of Marriage is essential reading for anyone who wants to know God and love more deeply in this life.

Just as this book is based on his popular sermon series, so will his Encounters with Jesus series, the first of which, The Skeptical Student comes out in December.


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Review

“This is a book Christians need to read.”—The Christian Post

“The rare marriage book I would heartily recommend to any single, no matter his or her age, whether dating, courting, engaged, or disinterested . . . Rich and practical.”—The Gospel Coalition
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

As the founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, Tim Keller started his congregation with a few dozen people. It now draws over five thousand weekly attendees who meet in three Manhattan locations. Redeemer has since spawned a movement of churches across America and throughout major world cities. Many pastors model their churches on Redeemer and Tim's thoughtful style of preaching. Dr. Keller lives in New York City with his wife and sons.


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very helpful April 6 2012
By SnowPharoah TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is an extremely helpful and practical book that addresses the issue of marriage and commitment within a Christian perspective, while taking into account the common objections, misconceptions and realities that marriage entails. The common thread in this book concerns the definition of marriage as complementariness between man and woman characterized by service and support of one to the other. This idea of relationship as service, as a form of sacrifice really, should not be surprising to readers of Keller. Service and sacrifice have defined the walk of the Christian across history and throughout the world. Keller has often referred to this basic notion. In a world that is broken, yet has the promise of redemption, witnessed by the work on the cross, the Christian imitates his/her chief - one who gives all, one who forgives and who leaves healing in his/her wake.

So it is only logical that in this relationship that most closely mirrors God's own relationship to humans, there is the idea of service of one to the other, for the good, for the happiness and fulfillment of the other. Marriage is about what I will do to make the other more themselves. It is not about what I can get out of the other. The subtle reflection is made that marriage, even blissfully happy marriage, is not complete. It is a signpost, pointing in another direction, in a direction where there is the greatest joy.

I particularly appreciated the ease with which the Kellers (written by Tim and Kathy Keller) were able to address the issue of the husband-wife relationship within the traditional questions of gender roles. These have been very painful issues in the church, often visible to non-christian observers.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best marriage book I've every read March 8 2012
Format:Hardcover
Not a self-help book, nor a deep theological study, this book is a sound explanation of, and a principled, practical guide to marriage based on Ephesians 5. After reading it, my wife and I enjoyed it so much that we decided to gift a copy to a newly engaged couple we know. If this book was given to all newly engaged couples, along with solid premarital counseling, I think it would solve a lot of problems before they got started. It is refreshing to see the institution of marriage lifted high in a time that so many are throwing it away.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By Rodge TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The thing that stands out most clearly when reading this book is how sensible it is. There is insight here that reaches beyond the obvious, but there are also moments that are simple, shining, wonderful good common sense. Keller diagnoses much of what is wrong with modern marriage and modern attitudes about marriage. Paradoxically, people are both too idealistic (in their idea of a suitable marriage partner) and too pessimistic (in their belief in the viability of marriage) resulting in a toxic and destructive atmosphere.

Keller uses Ephesians 5 as a bedrock, showing how Paul ideas about marriage are not only challenging in our time, but would have disturbed Paul's contemporary audience. The Bible is a guide to all times, challenging contemporary norms with its timeless guiding principles.

Early on, Keller identifies self-centeredness as the main threat to the viability of a marriage. This is rightly established first - then he goes on to bring in other ideas which are helpful once centered on this principle, such as "love languages" or as Keller neatly refers to them, "currencies".

Among other things, Keller tackles singleness as a viable way of life, gender issues (with the help of his wife), and of course, a right view of sex.

This is definitely the sort of book you can read twice or five times, take notes and use to make your own approach to marriage much, much better.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This book is a must read Jan. 27 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Tim Keller does an excellent job explaining the Biblical view of marriage, helps to strip away false expectations & reminds the reader about how love for Christ changes everything! An absolute must read- I will share this book with my daughters as they begin dating and before they get married! Thank you for this excellent tool.
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