The Freedom of Self Forgetfulness: The Path to True Christian Joy

by Timothy Keller

Paperback, 2012



Call number



10Publishing (2012), Edition: 1st Edition, 48 pages


What are the marks of a supernaturally changed heart? This is one of the questions the Apostle Paul addresses as he writes to the church in Corinth. He's not after some superficial outward tinkering, but instead a deep rooted, life altering change that takes place on the inside. In an age where pleasing people, puffing up your ego and building your r�sum� are seen as the methods to 'make it', the Apostle Paul calls us to find true rest in blessed self-forgetfulness. In this short and punchy book, best-selling author Timothy Keller, shows that gospel humility means we can stop connecting every experience, every conversation with ourselves and can thus be free from self-condemnation. A truly gospel humble person is not a self-hating person or a self-loving person, but a self-forgetful person. This freedom can be yours...… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member thornton37814
This is a short work that is almost sermon-like in form. The author talks about things such as a shift from belief from believing that overly esteeming oneself was a big problem to believing that low self-esteem was a problem. He argues that self forgetfulness is neither. It's a deliberate attempt
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to make the self irrelevant. There are several nice sound bites that I suspect people will hear pastors quote in sermons. His main points are presented in such a manner that many pastors will also use the outline and some of the content in sermons.
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LibraryThing member NGood
This is an excellent little book that gets to the heart of the Gospel. It is freeing and an excellent reminder of what it means to live out of the life that we have in Christ rather than the life we are trying to make for ourselves in our own skin. We do not have to build up a positive self-image,
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or degrade ourselves into a negative view of who we are, rather we ought to take the perspective that we are in God and nothing else matters. It doesn't matter what other think about us and it doesn't matter what we think of ourselves, all that matters is what God says and he calls us beautiful beloved children, because when he looks at us all he sees is Jesus.
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LibraryThing member matthewgray
good, this is along the lines also of Luther on Freedom of a Christian. It's the gospel.
LibraryThing member Gregorio_Roth
This book is short and profoundly challenging. The simplicity of the message will rattle around in the tombs of our soiled memories.

Tim Keller looks at our condition in this inflated/deflated world. The world is flat and black and white; while we perform in our shadowed reality. There is only one
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way to the truth and the light. We find ourselves off the beaten track and lost. Until, we are picked up for hitch-hiking.
We are then brought to a trial room with only the smiling mob and the Court Jester. Every day we wake to a trial, much like the trial of the main character in Franz Kafka's The Trial.
We find that all the jurors are pointing at us and laughing at our hopeless condition, because we still think we can save ourselves. We think that there is a away for us to justify our actions. We cower at our reflected image and our ballooned ego lets out a gasp and we find ourselves thinner than Jack Sprat.
Where is your heart (insert your name here)? is the first question the Supreme Court Jester asks.
We say in response, "I played the game! I played by the rules! How can you accuse me of being a loser on my own?"
The Jester replies, "Who do you want to be son, than be that person."
We wake up and the trial resumes.
Keller shows us how to break out of this fun house mirror and self delusion through the reliance of Christ. This book must be read by anyone who struggles with depression or anxiety in the modern world.
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LibraryThing member redhedcatie
I finished this book more than a week ago and I'm STILL thinking about it.


I can't even imagine what it would be like to never even consider MYSELF. To just always be thinking about other people, and of course, Jesus. Totally freeing, but of course, totally difficult! We are (I am) so
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LibraryThing member HGButchWalker
Such a great little booklet. Dr. Keller shows what Paul taught about the issue of self-esteem and how to finally find peace with yourself.
LibraryThing member sparkleandchico
Not sure what to make of this effort from the widely acclaimed Tim Keller. It is the first book I have read by the author due to being warned away from him by someone who shall remain nameless.

I agree with him in principle that self-forgetfulness is a worthy goal for a Christian and that we could
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all do with a greater focus on others rather than ourselves. However, suggesting that we should not care at all what people think of us could lead to a lack of accountability or the encouragement of an independent spirit that goes where it pleases having apparently received special revelation from God. Iron sharpens iron and we need our Christian brothers and sisters to keep us on track. I think the author is trying to make the point that we should primarily pay attention to what God wants rather than what others say, but surely God uses others to guide and direct us.....

I also wasn't impressed with his admiration of Madonna due to her work ethic....

This is a small booklet and it's difficult to make a proper assessment after such a short read. I'm reading another of Keller's books now so watch this space!
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LibraryThing member BookAnonJeff
A Christian Case For A Phenomenon Many Realize As They Mature. In this short text - right around 40 pages or so - Christian theologian Timothy Keller makes a Biblical case for getting onself to the point of both self acceptance and no longer caring what anyone thinks of you. He spins this through
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his own worldview and builds his case based primarily on a text from 1 Corinthians - and both cites it within its context and doesn't directly appeal to any other texts to "prove" his points, thus earning a rare 5* rating from me for a Christian nonfiction book. Solid within its frame, as noted here there are other methods for achieving the very same state Keller claims is only possible for Christians, which hurts his case objectively but which is understandable within the author's own mindset. Very much recommended.
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Original language


Original publication date


Physical description

6.9 x 0.2 inches


1906173419 / 9781906173418

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