For those who think all religions are the same and those who seek to understand the dynamics of both Christianity and Islam, What Every Christian Needs to Know about the Qur’an by James R. White is an essential reference tool to get a Christian perspective on the differences between both.
James White digs into both the Bible and the Qur’an to engage one another on a variety of topics from the understanding of the Trinity to Salvation to the validity of manuscripts each book provides. He does that with humility and humbleness. He freely quotes experts on both sides. He provides detailed notes for those who want to go even deeper into their study.
I have always known that a key difference is the Islamic assertion that Christians worship 3 gods. White helped to explain the Islamic understanding that the 3 gods are Allah, Jesus and Mary.
The path of salvation for Islam involves a balance of the scales of good versus bad at the end of time but also is free to the whimsy of Allah.
In dealing with these differences and others White quotes the Qur’an and Islamic teachers through the years who have provided commentary and clarification of the Qur’an’s teaching.
Most challenging in a potential discussion of faith and source books between a Christian and a Muslim is the validity of each other’s books. Though the Qur’an affirms the teaching of the earlier books (aka the Bible) there is also a contention that the Bible’s teaching has been corrupted though no proof is given and no sources cited. More often ignorance of basic scripture teachings and even more the centrality and power of the cross considered scandalous.
At the same time the Qur’an claims perfect status with no changes, no corruptions, no letters out of place. White patiently and clearly deals with this fallacy.
I give What Every Christian Needs to Know about the Qur’an 4 out of 5 stars. The book provides good insight into these key differences with a humble and respectful attitude. Key texts from the Qur’an are quoted in their English translation and transliterated Arabic words are provided with their meaning. If you want to know the key differences between the Qur’an and Christianity this book achieves its goal.
My thanks to Bethany House Publishing for providing a free copy to review. I was not required to give a positive review just an honest one.