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Understanding Islam And Christianity: Beliefs That Separate Us and How to Talk About Them Paperback – Oct 1 2013


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Harvest House Publishers (Oct. 1 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0736949909
  • ISBN-13: 978-0736949903
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 13.7 x 2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #371,508 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Amazon.com: 15 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
This book is written from the Christian point of view ... Oct. 17 2014
By David's Wife - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
This book is written from the Christian point of view and it explains some of the differences in the beliefs of Christians and Muslims using Christian scripture and writings from Christian theologians. I think it's intent may be to help Christians present their views to Muslims. It may be helpful to some people in that regard. I think that Muslims may be offended by the book though. I received this book free to review from Netgalley.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Very interesting with "meaty" information Nov. 16 2013
By Cafe Lily Book Reviews - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This was a very interesting book to read, and while I thought I knew the main differences between Islam and Christianity, this book really opened my eyes to some details that I had not read before.

I saw another review that complained about this book being limited in topics.

The author clearly states on Page 13, that this book addresses the **most frequently** discussed topics between Muslims and Christians. This is not being marketed as an exhaustive reference, so you may be disappointed if you are expecting a wide variety of topics.

The topics covered are the ones most frequently debated or discussed between the two religions, such as: Was Jesus crucified?
Was Jesus the divine Son of God?
Is the New Testament reliable?

These topics and others are covered, and I think the authors provide a lot of "meaty" information on these subjects. As a Christian, I appreciated the chapters that cover (and prove) the reliability of the New Testament. If you enjoy apologetics, these chapters are excellent.

When readers finish this book, they will understand that while Muslims may use a few similar semantics, they do not believe that Jesus is the Son of God, nor do they believe in the Trinity. It's pretty cut and dried, and educational if you are looking to further your studies.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
A Great way to start learning about some key differences with Islam and Christianity. March 25 2014
By Rico - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Although this book does not cover the totality of Islamic theology and focus on various other things like the five pillars of Islam or the application of Sharia Law, it does focus on probably one of the, if not most decisive thing that separates the two faiths- the divinity of Jesus. As a believer/ follower of Christ who works for a major Christian missions organization, that runs into Muslims frequently on the campus I work on, I really need to understand key points of difference in Islam and Christianity such as the ones mentioned in this book.

Josh and Jim do a great job showing the points of agreement Muslims and Christians may have with Christ as an example, but also talk about what makes Jesus unique, in terms of his claims of being more than a prophet, but the Son of God too. I love how the book also not only addresses issues centered on Jesus, but also on the formation of the trinity and formalizing of the New Testament canon.

In addition time is taken to examine the prophetic and biographical back ground of the Muhammad, the man who played a critical role in the start of Islam in the 7th century. I found it extremely helpful that Islamic claims of Muhammad being foreshadowed in the bible are also addressed.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is a Christian as a great way to start investigating the beliefs and claims of Islam compared to Christianity or as a way to supplement one's current understand of the two faiths. I would also say this could be a great way to help a Muslim to understand your faith as a Christian.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
of limited scope, mostly about Jesus and Muhammad Oct. 1 2013
By Joan N. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The authors begin by showing the agreements between Muslims and Christians. They then focus on questions Muslims ask about Christianity (mostly Jesus).

They move to how the two differ over what it means that Jesus is God's Son, answering the Muslim objections. They also look at other titles given to Jesus, including the title "Son of God," what Jesus meant by it, how the Jews understood it, and why the Muslims reject it. The Quran's teaching on the subject is compared with the Bible. They explore the understanding and history of the Christian's Trinity, revealing the Muslim misunderstanding. They answer Muslim objections to the belief.

Next they address the atonement and the Muslim objections to it. They explore the differences in the understanding of "salvation" by Christians and Muslims. Then they answer the Quran's claim that Jesus was not crucified by examining the evidence from the Old Testament, Quran, New Testament, historians, and medicine.

The Muslim claims that the Bible predicted Muhammad are investigated, both the "counselor" Jesus foretold and the "prophet" Moses foretold. Both ideas are soundly defeated.

Then the authors address the Muslim claim that the Bible has been "corrupted." (I don't understand why this wasn't the first topic covered. The authors admit that the use of the New Testament in proving answers to previous issues relies on its reliability. (183) So why not prove its reliability before using it as proof?) They also clarify how the New Testament Canon was determined. (This is McDowell's expertise and it shows. Fifty pages of the book are given to this topic.)

Next is an evaluation of the Quran. They note, "Muslims believe that the Quran in their hands today is a copy of the heavenly Quran. It is eternal, uncreated, an attribute of Allah." (235) They then give evidence to show that the Quran is, in fact, the creation of men. They also show how the truth of the Bible is confirmed in the Quran. This is followed by an evaluation of Muhammad's life.

I am not sure of the value of this book. For a Muslim to read it, or for a Christian to use it in dialog with a Muslim, the Muslim would have to accept the Bible as accurate. The authors themselves admit, "Most sincere Muslims we've met and with whom we have discussed this topic [of the crucifixion] are adamant in insisting that Jesus was not crucified and for the most part disregard any evidence that says otherwise. We can understand that mentality when one believes the Quran is from God and is afraid to question his own faith." (132) My understanding is that Muslims believe the Christian Bible has been "corrupted" and the Quran corrects it. The authors do show that the Bible is affirmed by the Quran, but that is at the end of the book, not the beginning.

The scope of this book is limited. There is nothing about heaven, how non-Muslims live in a Muslim society, jihad, etc. This book basically covers the persons of Jesus and Muhammad. I think the title is a bit of a misnomer.

The authors freely quote other sources, lots of other sources, and at length. So if you've read much on the topic, this book may not contain new information for you. This book would serve as a limited introduction to a comparison of Islam and Christianity, specific to a few topics.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
McDowell and Walker hit a Home Run! March 7 2014
By Dale Wicker - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is an outstanding apologetic on some basic tenets of the Christian faith, especially the Trinity, within the context of how it compares to the Muslim faith. It is written to answer many of the basic questions that Muslims may have about Christianity and Jesus, as well as what the Quran says about People of the Book (Christians). Christians should read this, just so they have a better understanding of why they believe what they do.
Chapter 3 covers the relationship of the Father and the Son and is worth the price of the book alone! McDowell and Walker do an excellent job of explaining and articulating Jesus’ relationship with the Father. One of the best I’ve ever read! And Chapter 8 on Muhammad is also very enlightening (to Christians and Muslim’s alike) as to what the Quran and Bible clearly say or do not say about him. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommend it to everyone as a great foundational approach to the comparison of Christianity and Islam. The authors hit a home run with this!


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