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   In the late 1980′s Tim Keller, with his wife and young family, decided to start an Evangelical church in Manhattan. Here’s what his advisors said (in Keller’s words) about the idea. (Of course, we’ll put it in numbers as is our habit):

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(1)  “It was a fool’s errand. Church meant moderate or conservative; the city was liberal and edgy.”

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(2)  “Church meant families; New York City was filled with young singles and ‘nontraditional’ households.”

(3)  “Church meant belief, but Manhattan was the land of skeptics, critics, and cynics.

(4)  “The middle class, the conventional market for a church, was fleeing the city because of crime and rising costs. That left the sophisticated and hip, the wealthy and the poor.”

(5)  “Most [of those left] just laugh at the idea of church.”

(6)  “Congregations [already] in the city were dwindling, most struggling to even maintain their buildings.”

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   Then, quoting Keller, “nevertheless we launched Redeemer Presbyterian Church, and by the end of 2007 it had grown to more than 5,000 attendees and had spawned more than a dozen daughter congregations in the immediate metropolitan area. The church is quite multiethnic and young (average age about thirty) and more than two-thirds and single…”

   We recommend Keller’s book (see below) to see how Christian faith fits into the modern city.

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   ¹ Timothy Keller, The Reason for God: Belief in a Age of Skepticism (Dutton, Penguin Group, 2008). Here taken from Kindle electronic version. Keller starts off looking at both sides of the field before weighing in. This book is a reasonable and readable apologetic for the Christian faith.