Discover more from Escaping Mass Psychosis
Is Tim Keller a Christian Marxist?
Letters From O'Brien #31
Dear Mr Smith,
There’s something that has been bothering me for a while now and so I thought I’d share – just between me, and you, and your few followers. It’s about Tim Keller.
Keller is profoundly popular within the Christian mainstream, and as with practically anything within the Christian mainstream, his work has entered relatively unchallenged as far as I can tell. My guess is twofold; mainstream Christianity is full of figureheads and names, who are accepted based off of that ‘merit’ alone - most Christians have never even read the work of those held in such high esteem. Secondly, mainstream Christians do not attempt to analyze the philosophical propositions put forward by thinkers such as Keller, but rather nod their heads and accept a surface level, mundane, fractured reading of his works, as if he should be accepted with authority by the mere fact that he calls himself a Christian and has a following.
So what is the problem? Well, in my analysis, Tim Keller is a Marxist. From pushing woke ideology to straight up quoting Communist revolutionaries who hated Christianity, I believe him a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing’. Now I am not wishing to attack him as a person, I’m sure he’s a lovely fellow, but I do want to offer commentary on what I consider to be a rather dangerous set of ideas which contradict the nature of Christianity and the biblical message - both from the perspective of Modern Christianity, and from Ancient Judaism.
WHO IS TIM KELLER?
Keller is somewhat of a figurehead in Christian circles. This has an advantage and a disadvantage. The advantage – as with the majority of Christian ‘celebrities’ - is that few people actually read what he writes and apply it. That may sound cynical, but I’ve asked around, it seems to be true to me. The disadvantage is that he is essentially accepted wholesale within mainstream western Christianity without scrutiny of his core ideas. And inevitably some people of influence do actually read his material, take it to heart and do attempt its application. Maybe I’m making more of this than I should, I mean is he is nothing more than a generic, mainstream, American Christian? Unfortunately he is also a self admitted fan of Critical Theory, and by extension the ideas of Marx.
He has a confusing history regarding politics. While he has pushed Neo-Marxist ideology for many years, in 2020 he attempted to call out post-modern Theory and group identity politics. This sounds wonderful, but for whatever reason, he seems to have forgotten about that whole ordeal and reverted back to pushing Critical ideology, and over the past year he has grown incredibly blunt in his rhetoric. Going beyond his conventional method of subtly infusing ‘Christian socialism’ and Liberation Theology into his books on such broad topics as Christian marriage and Christian life, he has now arrived at a stage in which he is perfectly willing to claim that current thing figures such as Francis Collins are modern Daniels, while waxing lyrical in defense of Critical Theory.
I have written to you about elements of Critical Theory and its sub-sects, which include ideas such as Critical Race Theory (a blend of Marcusian Critical Theory, Intersectionality, and postmodern Theory) many times in the past, so for the sake of this letter I will keep the explanation brief. Essentially Critical Theory is a hyper-pessimistic modernised form of Cultural Marxism, headed by Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer during the early half of the 20th century, and then further modernised by Herbert Marcuse during the 1960s. Critical Theory takes the Marxist idea of ‘Class Consciousness’ and adapts it into a broader term known as ‘Critical Consciousness’. That is, man becomes ‘Critical’ of everything around him, including the actuality of his life and the circumstances he witnesses. Through the Critical lens, everything is reinterpreted through a Neo-Marxist lens, in which inherent ‘faults’ are highlighted and brought to the forefront of discussion. In this way, everything within a given society and culture is bad by definition. Things can only be ‘made right’ after a revolution has occurred. As Marcuse said, utopia cannot even be envisioned until after the revolution, since the current societal programming keeps the eyes of man blind. In this way, he calls for the absolute destruction of society and culture, so that nothing is left standing which remains from the inherently flawed past.
Of course (or maybe not so obvious if you are a Neo-Marxist), this ‘utopia’ by definition does not and can not exist. Ironically, this comes across in the writings of the Critical Theorists, just as it does in the writings of practically all utopian socialist ideologies, from Classical Marxism, to Intersectionality, to the ‘anti-ideology’ of postmodern Theory, since they all essentially frame reality itself as a prison (rather Gnostic in my view, but we won’t get into that here). All of this is by definition anti-Christian, since it stems from what are essentially Christianity’s most polar enemies since the early church, most recently in the form of Marxism and Nazism, stemming from Hegelian, Kantian, and Rousseauian philosophy, which itself stemmed from mystical beliefs such as Masonry, Alchemy, Qabbalah, and Esotericism, with these ideas traced back to Hermeticism, Neoplatonism, and other ideas (including forms of Gnosticism) which assert a type of narrative involving man ‘becoming as God’ after receiving enlightenment. To take this even one step further, these ideas have strong roots in Ancient Egyptian religion. The story of Exodus gives a rough outline of how that went down. And if one is to accept that Ancient Egyptian religion is the primary root of these ideas, then the bible shows that not only must one escape or seek to defeat them, but that - as with Solomon’s Egyptian wife - allowing these ideas space to propagate within ones own life or belief system will set one apart from God.
For Tim Keller, Critical Theory is fundamental to his worldview, since it allows Christians to - as he puts it in a article written for The Gospel Coalition - “expose the main flaws in the dominant cultures narrative, showing how they neither fit human nature nor our most profound intuitions about life”. When translated from Marxist language to English, what he is saying is that Christians must be willing to analyze western civilisation and its ‘dominant narratives’ (such as coherency and beauty, or literary form such as the Heroes Journey) through a Critical lens in order to see (read: gnosis) that it is not only immoral (“neither fits human nature”), but more so an anti-human society (“nor our most profound intuitions about life”) deeply rooted in such generic terms as racism, sexism, whiteness, class disparity, and oppression.
KELLER ON CHRISTIAN CRITICAL THEORY
Where to start? Keller has written countless pages of socialism-infused rhetoric over the span of many years. There is no shortage of material that brings out the worst in his political and economic beliefs, but for the sake of simplicity perhaps it is best to simply give a rundown of some of his recent writings.
The latter article mentioned - from The Gospel Coalition - is perhaps the best introduction to Keller’s worldview and calls for the adoption of Critical Theory by the church. This particular strain of Critical Theory is more accurately known as Liberation Theology; Critical ideology reworded in the 1960s so as to be pushed through the Christian church in Latin America. It focuses on a dialectical system in which Christians must choose whether they will align themselves with the oppressors (the wealthy) or the oppressed (the poor), but cannot do both. Obviously, this was successful, as Keller among many others have latched on to this idea and used their following as an avenue to subvert the culture more broadly.
Keller wastes no time kicking off the article, saying “I’ve read various forms of Critical Theory for decades. However, it’s only in the last couple of years that the term Critical Race Theory has burst into popular consciousness. What should Christians’ attitudes toward it be?” This opening line sets up what will be not only a defense of, but a promotion of Critical Marxism in the form of compassionate Christianity focused on ‘making change’.
This is made even more evident in the following paragraphs, in which he goes on to assert that Critical Theory is necessary in order to “make visible the deep structures of cultural order to expose them and change them” and “literary theory, feminist theory, critical race theory, queer theory - have sought to unmask and undermine the oppressive structures of western society.”. Again, what this means in plain English is that the Western society we live in is - as he puts it - deeply rooted in structures (such as traditions and norms) which create ‘order’ (as opposed to postmodern subjectivity and chaos) that must be ‘unmasked and undermined’, a task which according to him is currently being undertaken by such Christian-aligned sects as ‘queer theory’ and ‘feminist theory’. He puts it plainly; the goal is to undermine, and he means that literally, since the subversion of existing structures is seen as necessary in order to bring about change in the form of revolutionary movement forward. He attempts to hide this by later claiming that Critical Theory “has an older and more basic meaning”, which is to not just accept a culture, but see what is happening beneath it. He uses the bible as justification, rightly affirming that it has its own narratives and patterns which give an objective worldview to Christians, with which they can gauge other cultures without falling in to them. While the last bit is true, he still slips up in this explanation, as he reveals once again that his goal is to raise a new consciousness (through changed perception surrounding the bible) which sees the superstructure for what it is, and seeks to change it.
EVERY GOOD ENDEAVOUR
Another great example of Keller’s Utopian socialist sympathies lie in ‘Every Good Endeavour’, which provides a drawn out ‘Christianisation’ of Classical Marxism. Unlike his more recent work, ‘Every Good Endeavour’ sees Keller lean heavily on Karl Marx’s older principles, such as the belief in the alienation of labour, which he touches on multiple times. Just like Marx, Keller’s work reads as if written by a first year economics student who fails to understand even the most basic realities of the free market. This includes Keller drawing on Marxist writer Dorothy Sayers (which he does over a dozen times), who reasserts Marx’s view on alienation by arguing that capitalist economies do not understand or value the human element of the production cycle, but only the material result of labour. This is then pushed by Keller in the usual Marxist fashion, calling for a type of ‘justice’ in the labour market.
But what exactly is Keller’s suggestion for the market? Apart from quoting Sayer, who’s answer is the all-so-tiresome call for the workers of the world to unite and throw off their chains, he doesn’t really seem to have one. Within the book, he appears to take Marx’s theory of alienation at face value, thus accepting the presupposition that capitalism is the system through which this ‘exploitation’ can take place, since the capitalist owns the result of labour, and the labourer only produces in exchange for payment, and thus the replacement of capitalism is a broad solution. He fleshes this out by calling on the removal of conventional individual rights.
He also attributes many problems to ‘Expressive Individualism’, a term he borrows from Robert Bellah, whom he extensively refers to. Bellah, for context, was an American Communist sociologist who’s political leanings had him barred from teaching during the McCarthy Era, but would later see success after publishing many books revolving around the construction of an ideal society. In a profound excerpt from his book, Keller directly quotes Bellah; “To make a real difference, there would have to be a re-approriation of the idea of vocation or calling, a return in a new way to the idea of work as a contribution to the good of all an not merely as a means to one’s own advancement”. This sentence in itself not only calls for the abolition of individuality, since it eats away “at the cohesiveness of culture”, but also for the change needed to cultivate such a move towards collectivism; “in this book we will do what we can to help illuminate the transformative and revolutionary connection between Christian faith and the workplace”. The terms ‘transformative’ and ‘revolutionary’ refer to cultural changes towards Marx’s vision of a Utopian collective. Keller agrees with Bellah’s outlook, which is that government intervention will be required to deconstruct capitalism and rebuild a fairer society.
This idea is yet another pseudo-economic attempt at wheeling in political theories. As has been shown time and time again, the collectivist approach does not work, and only sounds good and fair in an abstract, childish sort of way. In actuality, what Keller’s claims to wish for would best be achieved by first having a unified faith (which was the case in the US) alongside a free market in which each individual acted in the best interest of themselves and their loved ones. Bound by objective morality, each person acting in their own best interest inevitably averages out to a point in which everyone acts for the interests of the community. This is part of the ‘Invisible Hand’ idea put forward in ‘The Wealth of Nations’, which posits that free markets - despite lacking centralisation - are guided upwards indefinitely due to the averaging out of decisions, and the inevitable realisation that to act in ones own best interest usually involves acting in the best interest of others also, and to produce goods means to produce things of beauty, value, and utility which benefit others. Communism and corporatism does away with this, as the past two years have shown, with such groups as pharmaceutical companies forcing artificial market demand, which inevitably leads to the worsening of individuals and communities.
Keller is in agreement with Sayers interpretation of Marx: the ideal society would not see man working for the sake of earning a wage, or for any sort of gainful employment, but as a way of expressing his creative energy. Of the many problems with this perspective, it does away with the mechanism of gauging demand (which indicates what will benefit communities) since everything is basically artificial. Sayers extrapolates this thought onto British society during World War II, which she viewed as somewhat ideal due to the focus on working, not for the sake of profits but, for the sake of producing something of value (like flak shells). She also believed that the mindset of scarcity was a good thing, and hoped that if the war ever ended, Britain should continue on in this manner rather than return to the ‘wasteful’ ways of successful capitalism.
In agreement with Sayers work, Keller writes that “This revolutionary way of looking at work gives all work a common and exalted purpose: to honour God by loving your neighbour and serving them through your work”. The irony here is that - as mentioned earlier - this market approach does not help ones neighbour, but makes their lives objectively more difficult, nor does it honour God, since it diminishes - as Bellah puts it - ‘Expressive individuality’ down to the most menial hive minded collectivism. Not only that, but Keller appears to draw from the resentful mind of Saul Alinski - author of Rules for Radicals - who spent his career attempting to lay the ground for revolution in the United States. Whether or not this is his conscious intention is anyone’s guess, but his examples of the ideal church are questionable.
Two ‘examples’ of the idealised church are given in his book. The first is the East Brooklyn Congregation, a socialist organisation heavily influenced by Saul Alinski. According to several articles, it seems that this particular congregation - which partially provides ‘affordable housing’ - has a history of pressuring the local government into seizing land, or pressuring land owners to sell at below-market prices. This has supposedly been happening for at least twenty years. This is what Keller sees as ideal. The second example is the Allen Temple Baptist Church. Beside proudly admitting that its teachings are also rooted in the work of Saul Alinski, the church also advocates for a type of ’social gospel’. What social gospel is this? Liberation Theology. Little more need be said. But of course, Keller has a lot to say on the case of Liberation Theology…
GOD AND CLASS WARFARE
One of Keller’s most blatantly revolutionary ideas relates to power dynamics. Throughout his recent career, Keller has focused on the need for the church to ‘take the side of the oppressed’. This sounds like something from the bible, but through the contortion of language, it quickly becomes a seed for revolutionary thought. Keller essentially propagates Marx’s Conflict Theory by claiming that society is fundamentally stratified between warring groups fighting over a finite amount of resources (money, power, etc.). In his book Generous Justice, Keller references Vinoth Ramachandra and Gustavo Gutierrez in order to reaffirm his point that God fights on behalf of the poor. Gutierrez - for context - practically kick-started Liberation Theology, and many times admits that the ideal outcome is a move towards socialism. Keller first admits that the bible explicitly warns against showing preferences between rich and poor (Lev 19:15, Deut 1:16-17), but then adds in his own biased grain of salt; “yet the bible says that God is the defender of the poor, not the defender of the rich”. And with this sentence, Keller reveals yet another one of his blatantly Marxist beliefs.
The problem with this way of interpreting the bible is that it is essentially a morphing of words in order to fit a particular agenda. Rich and poor are not economic terms in this context, but spiritual terms. This is re-validated in the New Testament, where a differentiation is made between those who are rich in spirit and those who are poor in spirit. It is a category of heart posture, not material possessions. Keller and the Liberation Theologians take this and reorient the context, such that it sounds like a call for revolution at the behest of God.
This common push within Liberation Theology and the ‘Social Gospels’ is a means to an end, and little more. This should be evident in the way that stratification of society on the basis of class has practically no benefit. By overlooking character in favour of class, the most pressing issues within any community will almost certainly persist. It seems that this idea assumes a sort of unspoken binding of morality and class, in which the poor and oppressed can do no wrong, whilst the rich are predetermined to do wrong. Perhaps there is some bias towards this - some sort of psychological elitism - but like with all group identities, it is a poor way of gauging anything, and a great way of punishing people who have done nothing wrong.
GLOBALISM AND RESHAPING SOCIETY
Of course, this revolutionary concoction wouldn’t be complete without a call for the destruction of national sovereignty. Keller wastes no time in doing just that. Referencing American socialist Rheinhold Niebuhr, Keller claims that the tendency for people to favour their own, be it their family, nation, or people group, is a bad thing. He calls this a “cosmic insecurity of our sinful hearts”. Why? Because - taking from the work of Niebuhr - societies which prioritise their own above others are ‘injustice’, since justice through the Marxist lens means the equitable redistribution of goods amongst all. Niebuhr himself said that society must ‘destroy’ any type of power which is not ‘socially responsible’. That is, any individual or group which happens to possess more than another (socially irresponsible).
Keller also takes issue with the way western societies have structured their markets around quality control, and supply and demand. He references economist Michael Schluter, who voices his hatred for pay gaps, and advocates for a type of controlled market in which business-to-business transactions are manipulated in order to be ‘fair’. This includes being ‘kinder’ to suppliers, rather than cutting contracts when they do not supply - lets say - good products. Schluter - despite his credentials - has a flawed outlook on the market, viewing businesses as enterprises who’s only job is to redistribute all earnings back to its employees and community. Apparently, such things as capital investments, research and development, and quality control are unnecessary.
In a strange document called A Theology of Cities’ Christians - according to Keller - will be responsible for revolutionary change by disrupting the prevailing culture. The document - which appears to have been written for a class - outlines what may best be described as Keller’s social theory. He says that mankind was designed to live in a city-like culture, and that the new heaven and earth will reflect that. In this way, cities and urbanisation should not be considered a byproduct of the fall of man, but a Utopian idea set before mankind at the beginning of time. It was our destiny to live in such communities and escape from the harshness of the outside world apparently. Keller also says that God intended cities to be a place of mercy for “the homeless, or new immigrants, or the poor, or people with ‘deviant lifestyles’”. He then goes on to say that ‘density creates diversity’, and thus “the dominant majorities often dislike cities” and resort to living in suburbs and small towns. Without giving a proper explanation, he appears to frame non-urbanised life as inherently hostile towards what he calls ‘minority communities’. Are we to welcome the surveillance rich ‘smart cities’ as God’s plan?
In his defence of cities, he alludes to it essentially being a game of power and other ways of knowing; “the city is deeply merciful to those with less power, creating safe enclaves for singles vs families, the poor vs the bourgeois, immigrants vs long term residents, racial minorities vs majorities”. This is followed by a brief explanation as to why living in a diverse environment challenges ones views and ways of thinking; “I am confronted by creative new ways to think about things, and I must abandon my traditional ways or become far more committed to them then I was before”. This sounds good when interpreted in English, as if it will benefit us by expanding out knowledge while remaining grounded (indeed, this is how we should approach such situations, as there is always much to learn from others), but when read in the dialect of Marx, it is a call to abandon ‘traditional ways of knowing’ in favour of ‘other ways of knowing’. This is a Hermetic idea which is prevalent in practically all Utopian socialist ideologies; claiming that the Western understanding of reality is but one piece of a larger, more complex puzzle. Indeed, it may even be seen as a bad interpretation of one of said pieces of the puzzle. In all cases, it is seen as oppressive by such ideologues, as Westerns dare to claim that such things as the scientific method, empiricism, and reason may encapsulate some form of objectivity. Thus in Keller’s worldview, traditional ways of knowing are limiting to marginalised groups, since traditional ways of knowing assume a type of objective truth, rather than a type of subjectivity in which every tradition and group somehow has a shard of truth. This is - rather obviously - heretical, since the bible makes it evident that there is only one truth, not a plethora of truths fractured across time and space as is believed in the New Age movements.
The most ironic part of this whole situation is that Keller frames it in the rather alluring lens of ‘liberating’ the cities with Christianity, just as described in the book of Acts. Actually he is describing the exact opposite. The believers in the book of Acts went in to towns with no compromise of the gospel as they shared their truth. In contrast, Keller proposes believers go in to cities and accept their traditions, beliefs, and ideas. This is exactly what lead to destruction throughout the bible. Of course, Keller finishes off these sentences with the usual mask, where he claims that believers will go in and spread to gospel, but why not simply state that cities are large and unstable, and thus more likely to receive the gospel? Because it is a Trojan horse. This is why he states that the cities are always far more open to receiving biblical ideas than the countryside, which he continually demonises in the paper, citing that the term ‘pagan’ likely came from country-dwellers, and that the first churches succeeded in cities rather than suburban environments.
Later in the paper, he gets to the meat of his theory; that classism, racism, and other forms of oppression emerge in modern cities due to power dynamics and a lack of unified belief in God. The latter is true, the former is not. He then claims that the city of Babel was likely created as a “resistance to diversity”. This claim has no backing, beyond a strange interpretation of Genesis, in which God supposedly “wills the diversity of cultures as bringing forth the richness of his creation”, despite the fact that ‘cultural diversity’ at the time would have essentially been warring tribes with no sense of objective truth. Keller then uses this strange interpretation to attack those who ‘hate cities’, saying that Christians should “rejoice and enjoy diversities of cultures”. Again, this is rather strange, since the Genesis narrative more accurately describes the fall of man as the reason behind disunity, and this disunity (made literal through the separation at Babel) as something resulting from differing cultures worshipping false gods. This separation was not pleasing to God, and was not his original plan, but rather an unfortunate result of sin. Thus, God separates Abraham and his descendants from the rest of the world, so that there might at least be a seed remaining from which would come redemption from this fall. The Torah then goes on to describe the opposite of a ‘diverse acceptance of other cultures’, as God continually commands those who bring in the subjective beliefs of other cultures to either be put to death or sent away for the sake of protecting the objectivity held by the Israelites.
In the modern, New Testament world, ‘other cultures’ can be interpreted as unified belief systems, or as sets of cultural traditions. While it is true that other traditional ideas can be accepted as a Christian - such as traditional foods, dances, music, art, etc. - this is far removed from accepting another belief system all together, which would include the on-boarding of other gods, idols, and so forth. This goes against everything in the bible, and this is what Keller seems to fail (or at least fails to clarify at the risk of being ‘offensive’) to understand as he peddles political ideology under the guise of kindness, compassion, and acceptance.
Beyond this, it is evident that Keller - as with many Marx-inspired Utopianists - views urbanised communes as an idealised form of society. This is because utopia would supposedly see an end to inequality in the form of communes, and because the centralised governance necessary would flow through heavily urbanised environments effectively (i.e. smart cities). In contrast, the country and suburbs (especially farms and other such dispersed environments) are inherently ‘bad’, since they are large, bordered, and private. They are self-sufficient, with the residents keeping to their own (family, small community, group), and thus in Keller’s worldview would likely be seen as reactionary.
HELPING THE POOR
Most of these ideas point to a general initiative to help the economically unfortunate. As stated, the socialist ideas pushed by Keller and those he references will do nothing to better the situation of those who are struggling financially. Much effort is expended by socialist-types on the issue of income inequality. While sharp income differences create relative poverty, which is correlated with increased crime rates, the primary issue is not merely a gap between the wealthy and the lower classes. The primary issue - in my mind at least - is the perceived suffering of those at the bottom. This is not necessarily correlated with income inequality, since inequality is not correlated with standard of living. In a true free market, those at the bottom have opportunity, for the most part, to climb upwards in their lifetime. In a controlled or semi-controlled market (as is the case today) this is no longer true.
Centralisation and intervention into the free market has continually made matters worse for the poor. If such ideologues as the Liberation Theologians actually cared about this, then they would be advocating for less control of the market, not more. The reason is simple; increased centralisation and rigging limits the markets ability to remain dynamic. As a result, synthetic inflation and deflation in prices cause instability. In the west, this is most noticeable in the housing market, where rent and mortgages in many places seem artificially high. This is not often a result of pure supply and demand, nor a result of greedy landlords, but a result of state intervention, either into the market or into the earnings of businesses and individuals. Landowners and businesses must then raise their pricing in order to stay afloat, and at the end of the line the average homeowner or consumer is impacted. Landlords and business owners receive harsh criticism all the time, but it is often not their fault.
On top of this, the consistent push for the opening of universities to everyone, regardless of their competence for university, has had net-negative effects on the job market. Professional services are often inundated with employees, whilst the universities - driven by the lust for government money - let in a stream of students who will likely fall short of their career goals. This is a more complex issue, since it regards grading, commitment to study, and research before applying to university. But the general idea here is that the ‘fair’ approach of opening the university to everyone, with a blind eye to academic competence, has not only made the lives of everyone applying more difficult, it has practically had zero benefit. Students are lied to about career opportunities, and enter job markets in which artificial stimulation (through government loans to universities) create an overwhelming supply of employees. Unfortunately, the market rarely has the demand required to employee all of these graduates in the positions they trained for.
These are just some examples of what should be a highly problematic interpretation of the bible to any Christian who hopes for a better tomorrow. Keller’s works are something to behold, since they effectively mask resentment under the guise of love for the poor, and the undertaking of biblical calling. This is absurd. Just like the issue of the ‘living wage’, which should define paying for housing and food, but now supposedly covers everything from phone plans to subscription services, Keller seems to think that the Christian world should simply fulfil every demand of the economically poor. The Russian Revolution proved that when all is said and done, there is no difference in morality between the ‘rich’ and the revolutionary ‘poor’, who brutally and resentfully murdered as many successful individuals as they could manage. This is clearly covetousness, yet Keller describes covetousness as something unique to the successful, and the rich. The irony here is that Keller - like many revolutionaries - does not sound like he remotely cares about the hypothetical poor, but instead about defeating an abstracted enemy; the rich.
What needs to be understood is that these Critical ideologies will always seek to undermine the church by disguising themselves as something simpler and more innocent then they actually are. One easy way to discern this in the case of Liberation Theology is to see if it seeks to ‘bring awareness’ (read: create) stratification between different groups within a society. It seeks to destroy the church. Even if Keller himself is legitimate and goodhearted in his approach, and even if he truly disagrees with Marx and postmodernism (as he has claimed), this does not excuse the fact that the implementation of his work will inevitably lead to the establishment of anti-Christian and anti-human ideas which seek to centralise and ‘fix’ the world. This - as history has proven - will not work.
Beyond this, there is a serious lack of discernment within the modern western church. The blindness to what is evidently incursions from heretical ideas is staggering. The past few years have shown that many - particularly larger - Christian organisations are perfectly willing to cast aside their morals (and indeed the bible with it) in order to accommodate the current political ‘thing’, often standing on the sideline silently as catastrophic ideas swept across the west. Where is the heroism from the biblical stories, with lone prophets completely outnumbered, destroying the false idols and perversions of individual rights? These stories are few and far between in these days, and with little help from the church, who - as with the religious leaders of the bible - ignore what is right in the eyes of the Divine in order to adhere to the way that seems right to a man.
I am not attempting to demonise Tim Keller. I do not know the state of his heart. But there is objective truth, as are there God-given rights to the individual which extend to such things as private property and the right to buy or sell as one sees fit. To attack these things as some sort of evil is to label the Divine as such. In this same way, to attack Western culture with Critical Theory is to attack a culture rooted in Christianity. Perhaps the biggest lesson to take from this is to resist jealousy, since it is jealousy and covetousness that drives men to lust and anger over that which they do not possess.
Sorry for such a long letter Mr Smith, but with passion comes long letters.
Escaping Mass Psychosis is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
From the archive: