- August 5, 2013
- By John Rutledge
What Every Christian Needs to Know About the Qur’an by James R. White (Bethany House)
Even as the Bible provides the basis for doctrine and beliefs in the truth of Christianity, the Quran is the single uniting book for the Muslim faith. In contemporary society, Christians should become more informed about the beliefs and practices of Islam, especially about Muslims’ concept of Allah as God and his prophet/messenger Mohammad.
This book offers an excellent introduction for Christians who want to be more informed about Islam than what they can learn from news reports and the Internet. James White, a well-known debater of Muslim apologists for three decades, discusses what the Quran teaches about the Torah, the Gospels, the historical Jesus, salvation, the crucifixion, the Trinity, the afterlife and translations of Scripture, as well as transmission of their sacred text and other crucial issues.
Dealing not only with historical facts but also deep theological and prophetic questions, the book is valuable for all Christians who want to communicate intelligently with their Muslim friends and neighbors. It contains a helpful glossary of terms and even a schedule for reading the Quran, since it was written over a period of 20 years but not in chronological order. Certain words are kept with Arabic spelling to help ensure Muslims know one is well-informed of their beliefs. This treatment of the Quran is a welcome resource for American Christians today.
Ed Spann, retired dean
College of Fine Arts
Dallas Baptist University
Finding God in the Dark by Ted Kluck & Ronnie Martin (Bethany House)
In the author’s note, Ted Kluck observes, “Everybody hurts.” Kluck and recording artist Ronnie Martin wrote Finding God in the Dark to help those who, because of their circumstances, wonder where God is. Kluck and Martin alternate writing chapters, which Martin calls “everyday stories.” Kluck insists that even when life is falling apart, “You gotta have faith.”
This work runs the gamut from the loss of a loved one, to questioning God, to personal demons such as the lack of humility, to creating God in our image by having our own “personal Jesus.” The authors advocate prayer through times of unbelief. Martin closes the book by using Genesis 3:1-15 and other examples in Scripture to remind us God still is with us.
Finding God in the Dark will appeal to admirers of Philip Yancey’s Where is God When it Hurts? Readers who are struggling spiritually or have friends or family who are will find this resource helpful.
Skip Holman, minister of discipleship
Northeast Baptist Church