- Paperback: 368 pages
- Publisher: Baker Books; 2 edition (August 1, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0801064309
- ISBN-13: 978-0801064302
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (122 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #124,837 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Answering Islam: The Crescent in Light of the Cross Paperback – August 1, 2002
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From the Back Cover
What are the fundamental beliefs of Islam and how can Christians respond to them?
Answering Islam evaluates the claims of orthodox Islam and examines the evidence for the Christian counterclaim, preparing you with strong apologetic answers. This revised edition contains more resources and updated information throughout.
"This book is a must for everyone concerned about defending the Christian faith. Dr. Geisler and his coauthor, a former Muslim, have given one of the most comprehensive expositions and most complete evaluations of Islam in print."
Josh McDowell, author, Evidence That Demands a Verdict
"Answering Islam is a valuable tool for those wrestling with the theological barriers that separate one billion Muslims from personal faith in Jesus Christ."
Patrick Cate, president, International Missions, Inc.
"The Muslim presence in the United States continues to grow. It is important that we have a clearly written and fairly presented statement of what Muslims believe and how we as Christians may present the claims of Christ to them in a persuasive and loving way."
Ronald Nash, Reformed Theological Seminary
"This book is a theological masterpiece, the most lucid and comprehensive theological analysis and critique of Islam from a Christian perspective I have ever seen. It is invaluable as a tool for understanding the most serious religious challenge to Christianity in the modern world."
R. C. Sproul, Ligonier Ministries
Norman L. Geisler, Ph.D., is president of Southern Evangelical Seminary and the author of more than fifty books, including the Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics.
Abdul Saleeb is a former Muslim who has intensively studied the differences between Christianity and Islam.
About the Author
Norman L. Geisler (PhD, Loyola University of Chicago) has taught at top evangelical schools for over fifty years and is distinguished professor of apologetics and theology at Veritas Evangelical Seminary in Murrieta, California. He is the author of more than seventy books, including the Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics.
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Top Customer Reviews
Answering Islam is a thorough examination of the major teachings and beliefs of Islam. The book is comprised of three main sections. The first deals with the various core teachings of Islam: the Koran, the place of Muhammed, the Muslim's view of man and salvation, and the doctrine of God (Allah).
A number of issues are dealt with in these opening chapters, including the place of prophets in Islam, the Muslim concept of creation, the place of Christ in Islamic thinking, and the nature of eschatology in Islam. Were the book to finish here, the reader would have been treated to a wealth of information and insight into Muslim beliefs.
But the second section takes us much further, offering an in-depth Christian assessment of some of these doctrines. Three subjects are given extensive treatment: the nature of Islamic monotheism, the person of Muhammed, and the claims of the Koran.
Concerning strict Muslim monotheism, a number of issues are covered. The unity of Allah is closely examined, as is the notion of divine sovereignty. The authors show that Allah lacks the personal, loving nature which the God of Judeo-Christian beliefs presents. Instead Allah is seen as harsh, authoritarian and utterly transcendent. Muslims know nothing of the personal intimacy which Christians have with their Lord. Yes, the God of the Bible is transcendent, but he is also immanent as well, making him one to both fear and love simultaneously.
And the utterly deterministic nature of Allah makes any concept of personal freedom and responsibility difficult to maintain in orthodox Islam. The extreme fatalism and strict determinism found in Islam result in a master-slave relationship, instead of the close friendship which Christians can enjoy with their God.
The chapter on Muhammed is equally revealing and incisive. The authors carefully assess his character, his claims to miracles, and his concept of prophethood. And the chapter on the Koran looks at its claims to being divinely inspired. But the supporting credentials are just not there, argue the authors.
Finally, the third major section of the book offers a positive defense of key Christian doctrines: the deity of Christ, the Trinity, salvation, and Biblical authority. As these are main stumbling blocks for Muslims, the authors present a detailed defense of these biblical concepts, interacting with Muslim misunderstandings along the way.
On top of all this, there are 6 extensive appendices on such issues as Muslim religious practices, Muslim sects and movements, and Muslim attacks on the New Testament. But most readers will race to Appendix 5, "Islam and Violence".
In the wake of September 11, many will want to know if Muslim militancy is an integral part of Islam or an aberration of it. The authors provide a close inspection of the concept of jihad, or holy war. The authors contend that there are plenty of Koranic texts which appear to justify acts of violence and aggression. Indeed, it seems to be an essential feature of Islamic teaching, as found in the Koran and the hadith, or oral tradition of Islam. Both lend support for armed attacks on non-believers.
The authors point out that such justification for holy war is not comparable with what appears to be the Old Testament equivalent. This order to fight was limited in both time and place, while the Islamic version appears to be universal and timeless. Warfare in the New Testament is clearly spiritual in nature, and church and state have their separate spheres ("Render onto Caesar..."). But Islam knows no such distinction. Thus political power and religious authority are seen as one by most Muslims. Here, and in many other areas, Islam differs radically from the Christian faith.
In an age which appears to see all religions as being largely the same, and in a culture where Political Correctness reigns supreme, it is hard to make theological and ethical distinctions. But that we must do, and this book helps us to do just that in regard to the two main religious movements of our day. Many other good books exist which evaluate Islam from a Christian perspective. However, if you can afford only one, this should be your choice.
"Answering Islam" will answer all of your most basic questions about Islam and help you understand not only the news but also the threat that Islam poses to Christianity and the West. Pay special attention to Chapters 4,5, 8, 9, and Appendix 5. I would have given the book 5 stars except for one thing. Because of the way the book is structured, presenting the basic Islamic doctrines and then a Christian response to these beliefs, there is a lot of unnecessary repetition in the book. With all of this wasted space, certain areas could have been dealt with in greater detail. Also, while it's nice to have a defense of Christianity against Islamic claims, I still would rather have more in-depth information on Islam, its beliefs, and the problems with those beliefs. For example, a section on the violence of Islam throughout history would have been welcome.
Geisler and Saleeb divide their material up into the following sections:
Chapter 1 - Understanding Islamic Monotheism
Chapter 2 - The Islamic View of Creation and man
Chapter 3 - Prophets
Chapter 4 - Muhammed
Chapter 5 - The Qur'an
Chapter 6 - Endtimes and Salvation
Chapter 7 - An Evaluation of Islamic Monotheism
Chapter 8 - An Evaluation of Muhammed
Chapter 9 - An Evaluation of the Qur'an
Chapter 10 - A Defense of the Bible
Chapter 11 - A Defense of the Deity of Christ
Chapter 12 - A Defense of the Trinity
Chapter 13 - A Defense of Salvation by the Cross
6 Appendices on Muslim Sects and Movements, Muslim Religious Practices, The Gospel of Barnabas, Popular Muslim Accusations against the New Testament, Islam and Violence, and Black Islam