This book is about idolatry, and in particular the idolatry of love, power, money and success and how these 'counterfeit gods' take God's place in our lives. In each chapter, Keller takes a bible story (Abraham sacrificing Isaac, the Jacob-Leah-Rachael love triangle, the rich young ruler etc) and shows how idolatry is at the heart of what is going on. He relates these forms of idolatry to modern day situations and shows how we can pull these false gods off their thrones in our lives.
It has heaps of good stuff. Keller is insightful. His suggestions are helpful. You should read the book.
But I'm not convinced that idolatry should be the primary way that we understand sin, as Keller seems to suggest.
Keller frames the Abraham and Isaac story around Abraham's idolatrous attachment to Isaac:
"This was the ultimate test. Isaac was now everything to Abraham. ... Abraham's affection had become adoration. Previously, Abraham's meaning in life had been dependent on God's word. Now it was becoming dependent on Isaac's love and well-being. The center of Abraham's life was shifting." Keller, Counterfeit Gods, p7.
I think this is a stretch. Genesis and Hebrews interpret this event not as a test of Abraham's love for God over Isaac but of Abraham's belief in God's promises. God had told Abraham that his descendants would come through Isaac (Gen 21:13). Abraham believed this and so reasoned to himself that God must have been planning to raise Isaac from the dead (Heb 11:17-19).
In Genesis 22, it is Abraham's faith that is on trial. God was testing him to see if he really believed that he would do what he said he would do. Unbelief would have been the sin, not idolatry.
I've not finished the book yet, but in the next chapter (Jacob-Rachel-Leah) I think it is a similar stretch to say that idolatry (the idolatry of romantic love, in this case) is at the heart of what's going on.
Anyone else read the book? What do you think?