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The Freedom of Self-Forgetfulness

4.45  ·  Rating details ·  8,631 ratings  ·  777 reviews
‘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 résumé are seen as the
Paperback, 46 pages
Published March 28th 2012 by 10Publishing
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Mary Ann Yes. This booklet looks specifically at the idea that ideally, we do not want either low self-esteem or high self-esteem but to think less about…moreYes. This booklet looks specifically at the idea that ideally, we do not want either low self-esteem or high self-esteem but to think less about ourselves. This frees us to love God & others well. So it takes the idea perhaps a step further than your question. We are confident in God's love, therefore, we don't need to think about pleasing ourselves or doing things to boost our reputation or because we want to feel good or loving. We can forget ourselves because of that faith in God.(less)

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4.45  · 
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 ·  8,631 ratings  ·  777 reviews

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Apr 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: religious
The Freedom of Self-Forgetfulness can be summed up in one sentence, "I don't care what you think, and I don't care what I think." Keller expounds on the premise that his sins and his identity are not connected. His accomplishments and his identity are not connected. We need to stop judging ourselves, that is already done for us. We still sin, but we are loved. "My conscience is clear," he says, "but that does not make me innocent."

Keller uses a quote from Madonna to better be able to relate his
Steve Hemmeke
May 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
In a booklet barely 40 pages long, Keller explains 1 Corinthians 3:21-4:7 and tackles pride, ego, despair, self-esteem and the condemnation of others and ourselves.

The more I read Keller the more I see a standard format that I like: not A, and not B, but C. Where the world falls into one ditch or the other, he shows the Way.

Here, the two ditches are low self-esteem and high self-esteem. Traditional cultures have dealt with guilt and explained sin by pointing to pride. We think too highly of ours
Natalie Vellacott
Jun 11, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: christian-living
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 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
Miwaza Jemimah
May 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
How to live freely and joyfully in God. Awesome book. Life changing.

"The essence of gospel-humility is not thinking more of myself or thinking less of myself, it is thinking of myself less" - Tim Keller

Here is a sermon from 2002 by Tim Keller on "Blessed Self-Forgetfulness"
Nermine Hosni
Sep 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
نحن عادة لا نسمع أناساً واثقين بأنفسهم جداً ويقولون انهم اسوأ الجميع ونحن لسنا معتادين سماع شخص صادق يعترف بجميع مفاسده الاخلاقيه رغم منزلته الرفيعة وثقته الشديدة بنفسه

ان التواضع وفق مفهوم الكتاب المقدس يعني عدم حاجتي الي التفكير في نفسي وعدم حاجتي الي ربط الامور بشخصيتي بل هو التوقف عن التفكير بالمنطق التالي : مادمت موجوداً مع هؤلاء الاشخاص في هذه الغرفة هل هذا يجعلني اظهر بمظهر الشخص المهم ؟ وهل انا راغب في وجودي هنا ؟ فالتواضع بمفهوم الكتاب المقدس يعني ان اتوقف عن ربط كل عمل او حديث بنفسي كم
Tim Casteel
Jan 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Super short book. Some would say Keller was mailing it in. I thought it was great. And I think it might be the gospel message this generation needs, based on I Cor 4:4: "My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me."

"[Paul] does not look to them for the verdict nor, does he look to himself for the verdict.
What Paul is looking for…what we are all looking for, is an ultimate verdict that we are important and valuable."

Modern people think "my conscience i
Sep 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Freedom of Self-Forgetfulness fits into that category of books where it's so small but so incredibly rich and insightful that it needs to be read twice a year (at least!) Keller's querying of the human heart, centring around it's ego and subsequent prideful state at times, had me reflecting on my own sense of pride and a lot of questions came up which will no doubt shape a lot of my thoughts and actions henceforth.
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Tiny (only 46 pages), but full of wisdom explaining First Corinthians 3:21-4:7.

Favorite quote:
“Because the essence of gospel-humility is not thinking more of myself or thinking less of myself, it is thinking of myself less. ...True gospel-humility means I stop connecting every experience, every conversation, with myself. The freedom of self-forgetfulness. The blessed rest that only self-forgetfulness brings.”
Aug 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes the most powerful books are the shortest ones. I could re-read this one every week and still find conviction and encouragement. May we all learn to live to think not less of ourselves, but think of ourselves less.
Jordan Shirkman
Nov 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short, helpful, biblical, challenging. Classic Keller.
Bambi Moore
Jan 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It feels a bit strange to give five stars to such a short book, but the content is just wonderful. If you’re forever doing battle with your pride and you’re weary in the fight, this one will help you pick the sword back up. Also read in 2015.
Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very short reflection on the human ego and our natural tendency to think too much about ourselves- we either love ourselves and become super arrogant, or we hate ourselves and spend all our time worrying about our mistakes. Spoiler alert: neither of these approaches are good as both are inherently ego-centric.
“The essence of gospel humility is not thinking more of myself or less of myself, it is thinking of myself less.”

I’m really glad I read this. Another Tim Keller book filled with wisdom!
Dec 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2012
This slender volume is a tremendous little read. It's very accessible, whether you're a Christian or not. Tim Keller asserts that before the 20th century, we assumed all problems were due to thinking of oneself too highly--high self-esteem--and that since the 20th century, we attribute all problems to not loving ourselves enough--low self-esteem. And he proposes a third way:

"...the problem with self-esteem--whether it is high or low--is that, every single day, we are in the courtroom. Every sing
May 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Jeff by: Peter (friend)
How can a 40 pg book be so life changing? Keller expounds on 1 Cor 3:21-4:7. He fully explains what Paul means by not caring what others think about him, how a court would judge him and doesn't even judge himself.

He writes about high and low self esteem and how neither of them are legitimate. The only thing that matters is what the Lord thinks of us. And that is based on the gospel. Because God imputes his righteousness to us when we are born again, we can do things for the joy of doing them, no
Feb 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
A very good book. It's a short and easy read, but it has some great points!
Apr 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian-living
In less than 50 pages Tim Keller packs a gospel-punch with The Freedom of Self-Forgetfulness. A brief, almost sermon-like, exposition of 1 Corinthians 3:21-4:7 concludes with this powerful summary:

"Like Paul, we can say, 'I don't care what you think. I don't even care what I think. I only care what the Lord thinks.' And he has said, 'Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus', and 'You are my beloved child in whom I am well pleased.' Live out of that."

If your opin
Rick Dobrowolski
Apr 01, 2017 rated it it was ok
I am assuming that this was sermons put in book form with little to no editing. There would be no other explanation, because none of his other books that I have read come across in this style. I appreciated the concepts, but this was the poorest put together Tim Keller book that I have ever read.
Evan Johnson
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Revealed a lot about how much I rely on the approval of others and how much that is completely against the gospel.
May 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
El libro expone el tema del orgullo basado en 1 Cor 3:21 al 4:7. Sus causas y solución. Mensaje resumido pero desafiante, claro y centrado en Jesús.
Jan 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is a tiny book -- just 41 pages of content -- that packs a lot of punch. Using Paul's letter to the church in Corinth, Keller explains what true gospel humility looks like. And it wasn't what I thought.

The first third of the book is focused on our egos and how messed up they are: swollen with pride, empty, painful, busy, and fragile.

The second part explores how wrong modern psychology's answer to our problems is... on the one hand, psychology is right: if you look to others for your sense
Feb 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
In summary, Tim Keller says that to forget ourselves, we have to stop looking to others or ourselves to be validated. We need to compare ourselves to God's standard for us - and that standard has been eternally met for us by Jesus Christ. We don't need to keep living each day as though we were still on trial. We are, as Keller says, "out of the courtroom" - for good.

This doesn't mean that we will now live however we want. Actually, for the children of God, the verdict is what determines our per
Mina Bessada
Feb 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
تدور فكرة الكتاب حول كيفية النظرة للذات اعتمادا على مقطع من رسالة بولس الرسول الاولى لاهل كورنثوس 3:21
و ما بين احترام الذات القائم على معايير الناس و اللهث وراء رضا الناس و اكتساب تشجيعهم و راضهم و ما بين اقامة معايير شخصية لاكتساب احترام للذات و هو شيئ يذيد الامر صعوبة, اما لاقامة معايير عالية يصعب الوصول لها او معاير منخفضة جدا فيشفق الانسان على ذات ولا يشعر بانه تقدم للامام
و الطرح الذي يطرحه الكاتب هو نسيان الذات و عدم التمحور حولها و تقيم المفهوم الصحي للتواضع
فلا تكون الذات منتفخة و هشة ول
May 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: top-50-favorites

Wow, even though this is a short book (48 pages),it's life changing and made me cry. It's based on

1 Corinthians 3:21-4:7

And I am honestly not there. But I want to be. I compare myself with everyone when it comes to riches, education,looks,status,and ministry. Jealousy rages in my heart. And it's because I truly haven't understood the acceptance that Christ Alone is where I need look for my acceptance and be satisfied with it. But I want to be accepted by others, and even myself, and that where
Kaitlyn Wright
Jan 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
45 (short) pages of PURE GOLD!! Keller's exegesis of 1 Cor. 3:21-4:7 reveals the empty, painful, busy, and fragile state of our egos...The gospel is the remedy for our pride. Self-forgetfulness is the key to finding our lasting joy and identity in who Christ says we are! This book is a must-read and reminds us we need to re-live the gospel daily and pray, pray, pray that God would give us true Gospel-humility.
Rodrigo D'Cristo
Esse livreto me surpreendeu, apesar de ter tido excelentes referências confesso que quando o peguei em mãos fiquei meio desconfiado. Mas esse é um daqueles livretos impactantes e que quando você termina a leitura fica com aquela sensação de que "já acabou? Poderia ter mais". Keller trata de um assunto realmente relevante e que pode mudar nossa maneira de enxergar a maneira de viver o cristianismo. Não se assustem pelo tamanho pois o conteúdo é gigante. Recomendo a leitura.
Michael Lucas
Sep 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Um livreto que parece ser bem simples devido a sua espessura. Não se engane, meu caro, pois Tim Keller vai mexer com seu ego, (Uma tarefa bem complicada). Amei quando ele cita Kierkegaard e também quando usa uma entrevista de Madona para exemplificar o que a bíblia diz sobre o ego. Por fim, essa obra se faz necessária para pessoas que sofrem com o ego, ou seja, todo mundo.
Aug 10, 2018 added it
A very short booklet that contains the truth most people live a lifetime without realizing: what matters is not what others think of us, not even what we think of ourselves, but what God in Christ thinks of us.
Aug 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A small pocket sized book but it packs a powerful punch on teaching on being a gospel-humble person.

“A truly gospel humble person is not a self-hating person or self-loving person, but a self-forgetful person. Freedom can be found in this.”
Leandro Guimarães
Gospel humility is thinking about oneself less, not less of oneself. As Jesus took our judgement upon Himself, we are free to learn from what otherwise would destroy us.
Star Ryan
Apr 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Neat little book. Concise. Basic premise is not to think higher or lower of ourselves but simply less. I was expecting more practical application but I appreciate the message regardless.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Timothy Keller is the founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Manhattan, which he started in 1989 with his wife, Kathy, and three young sons. For over twenty years he has led a diverse congregation of young professionals that has grown to a weekly attendance of over 5,000.

He is also Chairman of Redeem
“...the essence of gospel-humility is not thinking more of myself or thinking less of myself, it is thinking of myself less.” 31 likes
“C.S. Lewis in Mere Christianity makes a brilliant observation about gospel-humility at the very end of his chapter on pride. If we were to meet a truly humble person, Lewis says, we would never come away from meeting them thinking they were humble. They would not be always telling us they were a nobody (because a person who keeps saying they are a nobody is actually a self-obsessed person). The thing we would remember from meeting a truly gospel-humble person is how much they seemed to be totally interested in us. Because the essence of gospel-humility is not thinking more of myself or thinking less of myself, it is thinking of myself less. Gospel-humility is not needing to think about myself. Not needing to connect things with myself. It is an end to thoughts such as, ‘I’m in this room with these people, does that make me look good? Do I want to be here?’ True gospel-humility means I stop connecting every experience, every conversation, with myself. In fact, I stop thinking about myself. The freedom of self-forgetfulness. The blessed rest that only self-forgetfulness brings.” 10 likes
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