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The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God Hardcover – November 1, 2011

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton (November 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525952470
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525952473
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (472 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #12,746 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“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.

More About the Author

TIMOTHY KELLER was born and raised in Pennsylvania, and educated at Bucknell University, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and Westminster Theological Seminary. He was first a pastor in Hopewell, Virginia. In 1989 he started Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Manhattan with his wife, Kathy, and their three sons. Today, Redeemer has more than five thousand regular attendees at five services, a host of daughter churches, and is planting churches in large cities throughout the world. He is the author of COUNTERFEIT GODS, THE PRODIGAL GOD, and the New York Times bestseller THE REASON FOR GOD.

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Customer Reviews

A helpful book before and during marriage.
John Williams Jr
Highly recommend for both married and singles to read.
Emily A Ferencze
Very practical and well written book on marriage.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

306 of 316 people found the following review helpful By David P. Craig TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Tim Keller is the pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Manhattan, New York since he planted it in 1989, and the church reflects the city's demographics: approximately 80% of the people (in a church of several thousand) are single. So Keller has a lot of experience in teaching, counseling and shepherding singles in particular. This book had its roots in the early 1990's when he did a series of sermons on marriage because of the skepticism, fear, and arguments that many of the singles in attendance had toward marriage in the beginning stages of the church - and still do today. He also wrote this book to share from his own experiences with his wife Kathy of 37 years and counting. However, most importantly he wrote this book to give a compelling vision of what marriage was designed to look like from the Bible from Genesis to Revelation - from the first marriage of Adam and Eve to the last marriage of Christ and the Church.

Keller states in the introduction, "its [the books] primary goal is to give both married and unmarried people a vision for what marriage is according to the Bible." I believe that Keller succeeds in giving a very compelling case for marriage from the three stands above - from his experience, his realistic apologetic of building a case for the benefits and values of marriage, and then giving a compelling biblical vision throughout the book for the beauty of marriage when it reflects the glory of Christ at the center of it all. He does not minimize the difficulties, or the effort and hard work involved in a marriage, but is clear-headed, and cogently eloquent in presenting the "complexities of commitment with the wisdom of God.
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131 of 137 people found the following review helpful By Fr. Charles Erlandson TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Marriage is clearly a troubled institution in American culture, and that includes even among American Christians. The problem is that so often Christians have accepted the world's definitions of marriage. While many Christian books have been written on marriage, Tim Keller's "The Meaning of Marriage" is one of the best.

What makes "The Meaning of Marriage" so excellent? At least four things. First, Keller gives a vision for marriage. His main reason for writing the book, in fact, was to give both Christians and non-Christians a vision for marriage. What is Keller's vision for marriage? Keller writes, concerning the meaning of marriage, that "It is for helping each other to become our future glory-selves, the new creations that God will eventually make us." More than this, Keller (in Chapter 6) relates marriage not only to "the dance of the Trinity" but also to Christ's love of the stranger (Chapter 5).

The second reason "The Meaning of Marriage" is so excellent is that Keller bases his views on the Bible. Time and again, instead of turning to what the world teaches about marriage, Keller returns to the Bible, especially Ephesians 5. While Keller begins with the Bible, he does more than just quote Scripture: he unlocks its meaning and applies it to our lives. This is what makes his teaching on writing so profound and powerful. While he doesn't cover every possible topic, he does give a theological vision for marriage that will change your marriage for the better or better prepare you for marriage in the future.

Third, in presenting a biblical view of marriage, Keller directly challenges the worldly views of marriage, including many that have infected the Church.
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105 of 113 people found the following review helpful By T. Eldridge on November 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Tim Keller's The Meaning of Marriage is a wide reaching book on the topic of Marriage. Keller's focus is broad, and he says his "primary goal is to give married and unmarried people a vision for what marriage is according to the Bible" (p12). The book is vintage Keller: The style is conversational, the insights are thoughtful and the approach is entirely Bible focused, with a particular emphasis on Keller's type of Grace focused Christianity. This is not to say that only Christians should read the book. On the contrary, Keller draws equally from personal experience, biblical exegesis and a whole variety of sources, and he states bluntly that he has spoken on marriage at "innumerable weddings", adding that "Most people who do not share our ...Christian faith are often shocked by how penetrating the Biblical perspective on marriage is and how relevant it is to their own situations" (p14). In this review I'll aim to fairly describe the contents of the book in such a manner as to give you a good idea about whether you want to read it. (This is lengthy. Consider yourself warned!).

With regards to his experience, Keller is in a unique position. He's been married for 37 years, he's counselled countless married couples, and he's been both the pastor of a small church in Virginia and now a sizeable church (many thousand) in New York City where 80% of the congregation is single and most are young. This gives Keller some fine credentials for writing a book on marriage which is valuable to both unmarrieds and marrieds, and that is in touch with various perspectives.

Keller begins chapter one by aiming a salvo at contemporary culture's view of marriage.
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