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Alone with a Jihadist: A Biblical Response to Holy War Paperback – October 13, 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (October 13, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1453845186
  • ISBN-13: 978-1453845189
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6.1 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,243,502 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Aaron D. Taylor was raised in a Midwestern charismatic church with the belief that Christians had a duty to take up arms in defense of their government and the ideals of freedom. He supported the actions of the U.S. government in Iraq and asserted that only one political party was the appropriate home for true believers of God. After a meeting in London with Khalid, a militant jihadist, Taylor came away with a deep questioning of the ideals that, up to that moment, formed a cornerstone for his theology.

Customer Reviews

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Jesus turned the other cheek, preached for us to love our enemies, and even rebuked Peter for defending him.
Kimberly Urig
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through SpeakEasy blogging book review network.
Lynne
After reading Aaron Taylor's book I've started recommending "Alone with a Jihadist" to all the Christians in my class.
Daniel E. Sidey

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Kimberly Urig on December 7, 2009
Format: Paperback
At the risk of being a spoiler, the last paragraph in Aaron D. Taylor's book, Alone with a Jihadist, left me with such optimism, I must reveal it now.

"... why wait till the age come? The world is crying out for peace today. Let there be peace on earth - and for the love of God - let it begin with the Church!"

Last month, shortly after Cara and I founded Lifted on Eagle's Wings, I was reading one of my daily newsletters and found a Sojourner's column written by Aaron D. Taylor. I was so impressed with what he had to say, I sent him a short note of praise.

We communicated in short emails and I ordered his book. I must be clear from a personal place. I never thought for a moment this young Pentecostal evangelist, from the most conservative place theology could imagine, would resonate with me for an entire book. I ordered the book more so I could understand that "other side" of Christianity. It was a way for me to sit back with my maturity and my Christian confidence with my answers about God and be ready to refute every point this person made.

Taylor shocked me to the point that I am recommending his book to atheists. Yes. The wisdom, honesty and Biblical truth that he illuminates in his book astound me.

Taylor has traveled the world as a missionary. He answered a call to be part of a documentary called Holy Wars and spend a day with a radical Muslim jihad. His book touches upon his experience but expands upon the idea why Christians should never go to war. Never. Never kill, never fight with violence. Even after sitting down with a powerful extremist who considers it his mission to destroy our nation, our religion, and us, he still feels we should never go to war, to never fight violence with violence.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Hannah J. Siegmund on January 10, 2010
Format: Paperback
To say that I was skeptical of the book's message when I first received it would be putting it mildly. I have been raised a conservative, evangelical Christian, taught that God and country are inextricably intertwined, and that redemptive violence is the only solution to the world's problems. Sadly, I never occasioned to question the validity of those beliefs. This book has completely changed my perspective on the world as a whole and what it means to be a true follower of Jesus Christ. The comfortable Christianity that I have always known is no longer enough; this book has called me to live a life of sacrifice and servant-hood, continually glorifying the Lord by living according to Jesus' life.

The book's most powerful theme is a concept too often overlooked by the Christianity of the Western world - love. Love seems an elementary concept, something so foundational to the Christian faith that it hardly needs further study, reflection, or practice. This misconception has crippled the growth of entire faith communities. When professing Christians participate in acts of violence, whether "redemptive" or not, they do not support a true revolution. Rather, when violence is used to overthrow violence, it is no more than a regime change. In this book, Aaron Taylor discusses at length the relation between the incarnational model of love portrayed in Jesus' life and the essence of true Christianity. The practical applications of adherence to Jesus' way are presented; Christians are begged to consider the life of constant sacrifice lived by their Savior.

Perhaps there is no better way to recommend this book than to use Taylor's own words from the last chapter: "What if our only moral agenda in this world was to imitate Jesus?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Daniel E. Sidey on December 15, 2009
Format: Paperback
I have an MA in Intercultural Studies with a focus in Islamics and I teach intercultural communication at Oregon Institute of Technology. After reading Aaron Taylor's book I've started recommending "Alone with a Jihadist" to all the Christians in my class.

Taylor has a unique ability to clarify difficult to accept ideas while remaining sympathetic to his audience. In "Alone with a Jihadist" he writes about his journey with God into hidden meetings with a radical Muslim. This experience causes Taylor to reconsider his reasons for believing and ways of practicing Christianity. To confirm what he has learned about faith, American nationalism, and America's media engine he travels to Palestine to meet for himself those accused by Americans of being terrorists. He gives us a first-hand account of the oppession and depravity he finds there. "Alone with a Jihadist" takes us on a journey in search of a non-violent response to terrorism and a servant-like response to nationalism that heeds the very words of Jesus.

Taylor is bold, thoughtful, very relevent and firmly Christian. He will likely lead many readers to ask questions hirtherto ignored. How has nationalism shaped the identity of the American church? How is it that American Christians believe Jesus' words "turn the other cheek" yet support the war? How are Christians called to handle violence? Are all true Muslims terrorists? Does Islam breed terrorism? What is the role of the state of Israel in Christianity?

By tackling these questions and remaining very readable to the common Christian, it's no overstatment to say that Taylor has written a book I've been waiting for since 9/11. If you believe Christians should have a response to holy war or national pride is an issue you discuss with others this is the book for you to read
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