All Time Famous Timothy Keller Quotes

Timothy Keller Quotes

Timothy Keller, born on September 23, 1950, is an influential American pastor, theologian, and author. He served as the founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City from 1989 to 2017, leading the church’s growth and engagement with urban culture. Keller is renowned for his articulate presentations of Christian theology and practical Christian living. Notable works include “The Reason for God” and “The Meaning of Marriage.” Holding a Master of Divinity and a Doctor of Ministry, he is recognized for intellectually engaging with contemporary culture and addressing challenges posed by skepticism. Keller’s impact extends beyond his pastoral role, making him a respected figure in Christian apologetics and thought.

Timothy Keller Quotes

1. “The gospel is this: We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.”
— Timothy Keller

2. “How Religion Works: If I obey, then God will love and accept me. The Gospel: I’m loved and accepted, therefore I wish to obey.”
— Timothy Keller

3. “God sees us as we are, loves us as we are, and accepts us as we are. But by His grace, He does not leave us as we are.”
— Timothy Keller

4. “The Gospel is that Jesus Christ came to earth, lived the life we should have lived and died the death we should have died.”
— Timothy Keller

5. “Love without truth is sentimentality; it supports and affirms us but keeps us in denial about our flaws. Truth without love is harshness; it gives us information but in such a way that we cannot really hear it.”
— Timothy Keller

6. “Worry is not believing God will get it right, and bitterness is believing God got it wrong.”
— Timothy Keller

7. “Jesus Christ did not suffer so that you would not suffer. He suffered so that when you suffer, you’ll become more like him. The gospel does not promise you better life circumstances; it promises you a better life.”
— Timothy Keller

8. “What is an idol? It is anything more important to you than God, anything that absorbs your heart and imagination more than God, anything you seek to give you what only God can give.”
— Timothy Keller

9. “You are more sinful than you could dare imagine and you are more loved and accepted than you could ever dare hope.”
— Timothy Keller

10. “The church is not a museum for pristine saints, but a hospital ward for broken sinners.”
— Timothy Keller

11. “Religious people find God useful. Gospel people find him beautiful.”
— Timothy Keller

12. “The sin that is most destructive in your life right now is the one you are most defensive about.”
— Timothy Keller

13. “The Christian gospel is that I am so flawed that Jesus had to die for me, yet I am so loved and valued that Jesus was glad to die for me.”
— Timothy Keller

14. “It is not the strength of your faith but the object of your faith that actually saves you.”
— Timothy Keller

15. “God’s reckless grace is our greatest hope.”
— Timothy Keller

16. “The church does not simply have a missions department; it should wholly exist to be a mission.”
— Timothy Keller

17. “Idolatry happens when we take good things and make them ultimate things.”
— Timothy Keller

18. “If our identity is in our work, rather than Christ, success will go to our heads, and failure will go to our hearts.”
— Timothy Keller

19. “We can only grasp the gospel’s sweetness if we first grapple with its offense- you can’t save yourself.”
— Timothy Keller

20. “The only person who dares wake up a king at 3:00 AM for a glass of water is a child. We have that kind of access.”
— Timothy Keller

21. “God will only give you what you would have asked for if you knew everything he knows.”
— Timothy Keller

22. “A lack of generosity refuses to acknowledge that your assets are not really yours, but God’s.”
— Timothy Keller

23. “Everyone worships something. The only choice you get is what to worship.”
— Timothy Keller

24. “Job never saw why he suffered, but he saw God, and that was enough.”
— Timothy Keller

25. “Putting our faith in Christ is not about trying harder; it means transferring our trust away from ourselves and resting in him.”
— Timothy Keller

26. “Freedom is not the absence of limitations and constraints but it is finding the right ones, those that fit our nature and liberate us.”
— Timothy Keller

27. “When pain and suffering come upon us, we finally see not only that we are not in control of our lives but that we never were.”
— Timothy Keller

28. “If your god never disagrees with you, you might just be worshipping an idealized version of yourself.”
— Timothy Keller

29. “Friendship is a deep oneness that develops when two people, speaking the truth in love to one another, journey together to the same horizon.”
— Timothy Keller

30. “We were designed to know, serve, and love God supremely – and when we are faithful to that design, we flourish.”
— Timothy Keller

31. “God is so committed to your ultimate joy that he was willing to plunge into the greatest depths of suffering himself for you.”
— Timothy Keller

32. “The peace of God is not the absence of fear. It, in fact, is His presence.”
— Timothy Keller

33. “Prayer is the way to experience a powerful confidence that God is handling our lives well, that our bad things will turn out for good, our good things cannot be taken from us, and the best things are yet to come.”
— Timothy Keller

34. “The resurrection makes Christianity the most irritating religion on the face of the earth.”
— Timothy Keller

35. “Prayer-though it is often draining, even an agony-is in the long term the greatest source of power that is possible.”
— Timothy Keller

36. “Tolerance isn’t about not having beliefs. It’s about how your beliefs lead you to treat people who disagree with you.”
— Timothy Keller

37. “Suffering can refine us rather than destroy us because God himself walks with us in the fire.”
— Timothy Keller

38. “In the original language, ‘Fear the Lord’ doesn’t mean be afraid. It means sustaining a joyful, astonished awe, and wonder before Him.”
— Timothy Keller

39. “Pride is the carbon-monoxide of Sin. It silently and slowly kills you without you even knowing.”
— Timothy Keller

40. “Discipleship is not an option. Jesus says that if anyone would come after me, he must follow me.”
— Timothy Keller

41. “The gospel is an exclusive truth but it’s the most inclusive exclusive truth in the world.”
— Timothy Keller

42. “If God is not at the center of your life, something else is.”
— Timothy Keller

43. “The doctrine of grace and redemption keeps us from seeing any person or situation as hopeless.”
— Timothy Keller

44. “Christmas means Jesus came down and got involved in suffering. He hears your cries.”
— Timothy Keller

45. “If God exists then every good endeavor, even the simplest ones, pursued in response to God’s calling can matter forever.”
— Timothy Keller

46. “Think like a prophet, serve like a priest, and plan like a king.”
— Timothy Keller

47. “If Jesus rose from the dead, then you have to accept all that he said; if he didn’t rise from the dead, then why worry about any of what he said? The issue on which everything hangs is not whether or not you like his teaching but whether or not he rose from the dead.”
— Timothy Keller

48. “Religion makes us proud of what we have done. The Gospel makes us proud of what Jesus has done.”
— Timothy Keller

49. “Prayer turns theology into experience.”
— Timothy Keller

50. “Without the gospel we hate ourselves instead of our sin.”
— Timothy Keller

51. “Bad evangelism says: I’m right, you’re wrong, and I would love to tell you about it.”
— Timothy Keller

52. “God relentlessly offers his grace to people who do not deserve it, or seek it, or even appreciate it after they have been saved by it.”
— Timothy Keller

53. “While marriage is many things, it is anything but sentimental. Marriage is glorious but hard. It’s a burning joy and strength, and yet it is also blood, sweat, and tears; humbling defeats and exhausting victories.”
— Timothy Keller

54. “A life of gratitude to God for being saved is far more pleasing than a life based on self-righteousness over being good.”
— Timothy Keller

55. “Even if our own troubles are great, we should still serve. Jesus washed His disciples feet on the way to the cross.”
— Timothy Keller

56. “Legalistic remorse says, “I broke God’s rules,” while real repentance says, “I broke God’s heart.””
— Timothy Keller

57. “God’s salvation does not come in response to a changed life. A changed life comes in response to the salvation, offered as a free gift.”
— Timothy Keller

58. “A common vision can unite people of very different temperaments.”
— Timothy Keller

59. “It is no more narrow to claim that one religion is right than to claim that one way to think about all religions is right.”
— Timothy Keller

60. “The basic purpose of prayer is not to bend God’s will to mine, but to mold my will into His.”
— Timothy Keller

61. “The only love that won’t disappoint you is one that can’t change, that can’t be lost, that is not based on the ups and downs of life or of how well you live. It is something that not even death can take away from you. God’s love is the only thing like that.”
— Timothy Keller

62. “Describe the God you’ve rejected. Describe the God you don’t believe in. Maybe I don’t believe in that God either.”
— Timothy Keller

63. “But to be fully known and truly loved is, well, a lot like being loved by God.”
— Timothy Keller

64. “I am accepted by God through the work of Jesus Christ – therefore I obey.”
— Timothy Keller

65. “If you are a child of God, you don’t lose your status if you have a bad week.”
— Timothy Keller

66. “The more you rejoice in your own forgiveness, the quicker you will be to forgive others.”
— Timothy Keller

67. “Easter means that Christmas worked.”
— Timothy Keller

68. “Money isn’t an idol. It just shows you where your idols are.”
— Timothy Keller

69. “Grace is the free, unmerited favor of God, working powerfully on the mind and heart to change lives.”
— Timothy Keller

70. “The way to find your calling is to look at the way you were created. Your gifts have not emerged by accident.”
— Timothy Keller

71. “Jesus smashed two of the rich young ruler’s assumptions: Christianity is something you can ADD and something you can DO.”
— Timothy Keller

72. “Our Christian hope is that we are going to live with Christ in a new earth, where there is not only no more death, but where life is what it was always meant to be.”
— Timothy Keller

73. “Jesus does not just bring good news; he is the good news.”
— Timothy Keller

74. “Faith is not primarily a function of how you feel. Faith is living out and believing what truth is despite what you feel.”
— Timothy Keller

75. “No one is so good that they don’t need the grace of the gospel, nor so bad that they can’t receive the grace of the gospel.”
— Timothy Keller

76. “Prayer is both conversation and encounter with God.”
— Timothy Keller

77. “Christ’s resurrection not only gives you hope for the future; it gives you hope to handle your scars right now.”
— Timothy Keller

78. “The world values power, comfort, success, and recognition. Jesus frees us to value grief, sacrifice, weakness, and exclusion.”
— Timothy Keller

79. “God invites us to come as we are, not stay as we are.”
— Timothy Keller

80. “Jesus took the tree of death so you could have the tree of life.”
— Timothy Keller

81. “Humility is so shy. If you begin talking about it, it leaves.”
— Timothy Keller

82. “There is no evil that the father’s love cannot pardon and cover, there is no sin that is a match for his grace.”
— Timothy Keller

83. “Through the person and work of Jesus Christ, God fully accomplishes salvation for us, rescuing us from judgment for sin into fellowship with him, and then restores the creation in which we can enjoy our new life together with him forever.”
— Timothy Keller

84. “If his suffering did not make Jesus give up on us, nothing will.”
— Timothy Keller

85. “I hate the moment when suddenly my anger turns into tears.”
— Timothy Keller

86. “Holding a grudge against someone means you think you know what they deserve and you take it upon yourself to give it to them.”
— Timothy Keller

87. “You are worse than you think you are, but also far more loved than you feel you are.”
— Timothy Keller

88. “The great basis of Christian assurance is not how much our hearts are set on God, but how unshakably his heart is set on us.”
— Timothy Keller

89. “There is a joy available that the deepest grief cannot put out. No circumstance or person can take away the joy God gives.”
— Timothy Keller

90. “As many have learned and later taught, you don’t realize Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you have.”
— Timothy Keller

91. “Religion operates on the principle ‘I obey-therefore I am accepted by God.’ But the operating principle of the gospel is ‘I am accepted by God through what Christ has done-therefore I obey.’”
— Timothy Keller

92. “Every single emotion you have should be processed in prayer.”
— Timothy Keller

93. “If you don’t love the poor, you don’t know what God’s done for you.”
— Timothy Keller

94. “You won’t be able to change the world, yourself, anything, if you don’t change yourself inwardly, deeply, enduringly.”
— Timothy Keller

95. “Don’t obey God to get things, obey God to get God.”
— Timothy Keller

96. “Fear-based repentance makes us hate ourselves. Joy-based repentance makes us hate the sin.”
— Timothy Keller

97. “When people say, “I know God forgives me, but I can’t forgive myself,” they mean that they have failed an idol, whose approval is more important than God’s.”
— Timothy Keller

98. “Falling in love in a Christian way is to say,’I am excited about your future and I want to be part of getting you there. I’m signing up for the journey with you. Would you sign up for the journey to my true self with me? It’s going to be hard but I want to get there.”
— Timothy Keller

99. “Faith in God’s promises means not always following the expected, rational path.”
— Timothy Keller

100. “Anything can serve as a counterfeit god, especially the very best things in life.”
— Timothy Keller

101. “If God wiped out all sources of evil in the world we would no longer be here, the evil is inside us.”
— Timothy Keller

102. “Our culture says that feelings of love are the basis for actions of love. And of course that can be true. But it is truer to say that actions of love can lead consistently to feelings of love.”
— Timothy Keller

103. “The gospel shows a God far more holy than the legalist can bear, yet far more merciful than a humanist can conceive.”
— Timothy Keller

104. “Any person who only sticks with Christianity as long as things are going his or her way, is a stranger to the cross.”
— Timothy Keller

105. “Repentance is like antiseptic. You pour antiseptic onto a wound and, at first, it stings. Then it heals.”
— Timothy Keller

106. “No one is exempt from trials and tribulations. In fact, this is often what happens to people God loves very much, for it is part of God’s often mysterious and good plan for turning us into something great.”
— Timothy Keller

107. “There are some needs only you can see. There are some hands only you can hold. There are some people only you can reach.”
— Timothy Keller

108. “Because of Jesus-there is always hope, even in the darkest moments of your life.”
— Timothy Keller

109. “The gospel is not just the “ABCs” but the “A-to-Z” of the Christian life.”
— Timothy Keller

110. “Our need for worth is so powerful that whatever we base our identity and value on we essentially ‘deify.’ We will look to it with all the passion and intensity of worship and devotion, even if we think ourselves as highly irreligious.”
— Timothy Keller

111. “Only when our greatest love is God, a love that we cannot lose even in death, can we face all things with peace. Grief was not to be eliminated but seasoned and buoyed up with love and hope.”
— Timothy Keller

112. “People are messy; therefore, relationships will be messy. Don’t be surprised by messiness.”
— Timothy Keller

113. “Christmas is telling you that you could never get to heaven on your own. God had to come to you.”
— Timothy Keller

114. “Prayer is continuing a conversation that God has started through his Word and his grace, which eventually becomes a full encounter with him.”
— Timothy Keller

115. “To fear the Lord is to be overwhelmed with wonder before the greatness of God and his love.”
— Timothy Keller

116. “Gifts are abilities God gives us to meet the needs of others in Christ’s name.”
— Timothy Keller

117. “While other worldviews lead us to sit in the midst of life’s joys, foreseeing the coming sorrows, Christianity empowers its people to sit in the midst of this world’s sorrows, tasting the coming joy.”
— Timothy Keller

118. “Jesus didn’t come to tell us the answers to the questions of life, he came to be the answer.”
— Timothy Keller

119. “God loves you just because He loves you.”
— Timothy Keller

120. “To pray is to accept that we are, and always will be, wholly dependent on God for everything.”
— Timothy Keller

121. “It is remarkable that in all of his writings Paul’s prayers for his friends contain no appeals for changes in their circumstances.”
— Timothy Keller

122. “Religion: ‘My identity is built on being a good person.’ Gospel: ‘My identity is not built on my record or my performance but on Christ’s.’”
— Timothy Keller

123. “There is a direct relationship between a person’s grasp and experience of God’s grace, and his or her heart for justice and the poor.”
— Timothy Keller

124. “Nobody who understands the free grace of God takes sin lightly.”
— Timothy Keller

125. “Those who condemn the self-righteous for the sake of self-discovery do so with ironic self-righteousness.”
— Timothy Keller

126. “The reason the stone was rolled away on Jesus’s tomb was not so that Jesus could get out, but so that we could get in.”
— Timothy Keller

127. “Revival occurs when those who think they already know the gospel discover they do not really or fully know it.”
— Timothy Keller

128. “Truth without love is imperious self-righteousn ess. Love without truth is cowardly self-indulgence .”
— Timothy Keller

129. “Love is the effort and desire to make someone else everything they were created to be.”
— Timothy Keller

130. “Truth is more important, freedom is more complex, and Jesus is more liberating than you think.”
— Timothy Keller

131. “Only if you are part of a community of believers seeking to resemble, serve, and love Jesus will you ever get to know him and grow into his likeness.”
— Timothy Keller

132. “The key to continual and deeper spiritual renewal and revival is the continual re-discovery of the gospel.”
— Timothy Keller

133. “Marriage has the power to set the course of your life as a whole. If your marriage is strong, even if all the circumstances in your life around you are filled with trouble and weakness, it won’t matter. You will be able to move out into the world in strength.”
— Timothy Keller

134. “Forgiveness always comes at a cost to the one granting the forgiveness. To not retaliate is to absorb the cost.”
— Timothy Keller

135. “The resurrection was God’s way of stamping PAID IN FULL right across history so that nobody could miss it.”
— Timothy Keller

136. “Suffering is unbearable if you aren’t certain that God is for you and with you.”
— Timothy Keller

137. “If you have money, power, and status today, it is due to the century and place in which you were born, to your talents and capacities and health, none of which you earned. In short, all your resources are in the end the gift of God.”
— Timothy Keller

138. “Prayer should be done regularly, persistently, resolutely, and tenaciously at least daily, whether we feel like it or not.”
— Timothy Keller

139. “Rejoicing and repentance must go together. Repentance without rejoicing will lead to despair. Rejoicing without repentance is shallow and will only provide passing inspiration instead of deep change.”
— Timothy Keller

140. “Prayer is our way of entering into the happiness of God himself.”
— Timothy Keller

141. “The deeper the experience of the free grace of God, the more generous we must become.”
— Timothy Keller

142. “Prayer is never just an emergency flare or desperate anxious gamble. God’s attention is not based on our performance but parental love.”
— Timothy Keller

143. “Prayer can be simple, but it’s not easy. Nothing great is.”
— Timothy Keller

144. “You are a totally loved moral failure.”
— Timothy Keller

145. “What the heart most wants, the mind finds reasonable, the will finds doable, and the emotions find desirable.”
— Timothy Keller

146. “Everyone says they want community and friendship. But mention accountability or commitment to people, and they run the other way.”
— Timothy Keller

147. “Disordered love always leads to misery and breakdown. The only way to ‘reorder’ our loves is to love God supremely.”
— Timothy Keller

148. “We must have a strong inner life of fellowship and intimacy with Jesus if we are going to have a strong outer life of ministry.”
— Timothy Keller

149. “Legalism is looking to something besides Jesus Christ in order to be acceptable and clean before God.”
— Timothy Keller

150. “Jesus is the only Lord who, if you receive him, will fulfill you completely, and, if you fail him, will forgive you eternally.”
— Timothy Keller

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