Nabeel QureshiZondervan / 2016 / Trade PaperbackOur Price$14.995 out of 5 stars for Answering Jihad: A Better Way Forward. View reviews of this product. 33 Reviews
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Margie B5 Stars Out Of 5fast and easy guideFebruary 28, 2016Margie BQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5An inquisitive mind, a compassionate heart, a keen intellect, an unquenchable thirst for the truth, twenty-two years of his life as a devoted Muslim, many Muslim friends and relatives and a gift to communicate in an easily understood manner put Nabeel Qureshi in a unique place to address this current topic. Mr. Qureshi grew up as an American Muslim who experienced Islam as a religion of "peace with God and peace with man" with "a great deal of emphasis placed on morality, legality, community and spirituality".
His first book, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus captivated me. He was someone deeply committed to his Muslim faith, yet when he began investigating his faith and seeking truth, he discovered that not all was as he was taught. His investigation led him to what he calls a three-pronged fork in the road where he needed to choose whether to leave Islam, grow apathetic or become "radicalized". Knowing his background, when I saw this book appear so soon after the Paris and San Bernardino shootings, I wanted to hear what he had to say about this very problematic issue.
The book is short - only 150 pages plus several appendices- so it is a fast read, which makes it ideal for busy people who want to get a good understanding of the basics in a short time investment. The book is divided into 18 blog-like questions with answers. At the end of each chapter is a several paragraph summary of the chapter which recaps the main points and helps reinforce them.
"A more appropriate avenue for answering whether Islam is "a religion of peace" is the life and teaching of its prophet," the author states. Therefore, a large portion of the book is devoted to the person of Mohammad and the beginnings of Islam, all key to understanding Islam and the rise of Jihad. Because of the massive volumes of Hadith and Sunnah that Muslims use to interpret the Quran, Nabeel's background in Islam and his study of Christianity and Islam after his conversion helps him guide the readers in wading through information that would otherwise overwhelm them. He informs us that most Muslims get their set of beliefs from their imam and have not studied the many foundational manuscripts for themselves, which means many Muslims do, in all integrity, live out Islam as a peaceful religion because that is how they understand it.
Just as many religions see success as a sign of blessing from their god, so Muslims feel that true obedience to Allah leads to Muslim domination as was so in the Golden Age of Islam. The loss of Muslim dominance to Europe starting in the mid 1700's caused Muslims to ask why they were not receiving their god's blessing. Radical Islam is a reformation in Islam to go back to the early days and teaching of Islam in order to once again receive Allah's blessing and recreate the Golden Days of Islam. Out of this movement, ISIS, Al-Qaida and Boko Haram are born. The availability via the internet of Islams foundational documents, which were at one time only found in Islamic libraries, allows the novice Muslim to access these documents for himself. "Despite the many positive teachings and qualities, the reality is that Islam's foundations contain a tremendous amount of violence, says Nabeel.
Now that we understand where jihad comes from, the big question that must be addressed is how do we answer jihad? If there were an easy answer, this question would be obsolete. Nabeel Qureshi says we must start by doing two things. We must tell the truth about Islam and we must show compassion to Muslims. When Muslims encounter the early texts, they will have to make a decision: apostasy, apathy or radicalization. It would benefit the whole world if Muslims did not make that choice with the company of radical recruiters. Treating Muslims with fear and suspicion will alienate them and drive them to radical Islam. We must treat Muslims as people inherently worthy of love and respect to let them see we are not their enemies and if possible, help them find a non-violent way forward.
YFast5 Stars Out Of 5Gracious & InformativeMarch 22, 2016YFastQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Answering Jihad: A Better Way Forward is Dr. Nabeel Qureshis second published book. Dr. Qureshis first book Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim was New York Times bestseller. This short book (only 173 pages long) speaks to issues that are current events. Dr. Qureshi wrote it in just a few weeks. However, dont think that means it is a half-baked book. It is obvious Dr. Qureshi spent much time prior to writing this book reflecting on the issues addressed in this book. I found the book immensely helpful in understanding what in the world is going on with violence attributed to Muslim extremists.
Dr. Qureshi is qualified to write this book for several reasons. First, he grew up in a faithful Muslim family and was schooled by his family and in his Mosque in Islam apologetics. Second, he is a person who seeks answers to his questions. For example, as a devout Muslim, he states his own sense of rightness was shaken by the September 11, 2001 World Trade Center attack. Third, his journey from Islam to faith in Jesus Christ came as a result of looking deeply into the roots and theology of both Islam and Christianity. Fourth, Dr. Qureshi has holds academic degrees in apologetics from Biola University, in religion from Duke University, and is studying Judaism and Christianity at Oxford.
The book is divided into 3 parts that answers 18 questions. I learned much about the history of Islam, the roots of jihad, and why most Muslims do not embrace the violence of jihad. I learned about current eventswho is who in the Muslim world, how the various sects developed, and how they are similar and different. I learned how Islam and Christianity differ from each other on fundamental points. It is written in a warm, conversational, gracious style. It would be easy to picture yourself across the table from Dr. Qureshi drinking a cup of coffee and picking his brain about issues he has lived, studied, and is familiar with.
Dr. Qureshi writes with a heart of compassion and love for all people. I found his explanations to be scholarly yet completely understandable to the ordinary person. His writing was objective and dispassionate as he tackled "hot" issues. I really appreciated that. It helped to erase some of my irrational fears, and yet respect the current of radicalism that is sweeping the globe.
I wish there would have been more detail in answering some of the questions. However, in the introduction, Dr. Qureshi was clear that this book is an introduction to a very complex topic and was designed to point a better way forward. My other criticism is the absence of footnotes. I also would have appreciated a bibliography of helpful books (both from Islam and Christian sources). He does mention at the outset of the book a helpful work by an Islamic Studies professor at Rice University. There are helpful appendices in the back and a nice glossary.
I recommend this small book to people who want to know more about current events, to people who find themselves in a knowledge deficit about Islam, and to people who are curious how the worlds two major belief systems stack up against each other.
(Disclosure: I received a free copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for a fair review.)
Brownie5 Stars Out Of 5Keep AwareOctober 26, 2016BrownieQuality: 0Value: 0Meets Expectations: 0The author makes it very clear that "Jihad" is a growing problem to be faced now and in the future. He is not trying to scare anyone but trying to make the public aware of the rising concern of Islamic radicles and what they believe. He was a Muslim and converted to Christianity, so his knowledge of Islam is well documented. This was a great read.
Stephen5 Stars Out Of 5Society needs this bookMarch 21, 2016StephenQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Nabeel Qureshi strongly resisted writing "Answering Jihad," and I can understand why. Jihad is religiously motivated, politically polarized and emotionally charged the perfect recipe for a firestorm. But, instead of giving us gasoline to fuel the fire, Qureshi gives us water to quench it.
That water comes in the form of truth and love the two ingredients so often missing from these kinds of discussions. Qureshi is uniquely qualified to offer those ingredients.
As a former devout Muslim, he investigated his faith passionately I strongly recommend his New York Times bestselling book, "Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus," which documents that investigation. As an American, he's wrestled with the implications of 9/11, San Bernardino and other terrorist attacks. He's working on his fourth university degree (a doctorate from Oxford), and he's a gifted communicator. In other words, he's book smart and street smart.
The book is only 173 pages, including the four appendices. In other words, it's not an exhaustive treatment of the subject of jihad, and it doesn't pretend to be. Rather, it's a primer that, as the subtitle implies, offers us a better way forward. It's a framework to help us think through this issue, understand the nuances we tend to overlook and guide us in how to respond.
It's divided into three sections, answering a total of 18 questions about jihad. Here's a sampling:
In the "Origins of Jihad" section, he defines jihad and addresses whether Islam is historically a religion of peace.
In the "Jihad Today" section, he grapples with radical Islam, ISIS and the identity of true Muslims violent or peaceful?
In the "Jihad in Judeo-Christian Context" section, he discusses the Crusades and whether Muslims and Christians worship the same God.
Qureshi reluctantly concluded he needed to write this book. I eagerly conclude you need to read this book. It offers all of us a better way forward.
HsMom5 Stars Out Of 5This is a must read!March 1, 2016HsMomQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Nabeel Qureshi's book, Answering Jihad: A Better Way Forward, is timely and relevant to our culture today, beginning with the origins of jihad and asking questions like "is Islam a religion of peace?" and "what is jihad?" He then moves forward to help us understand jihad today, discussing what radical Islam is and who Al-Qaida, ISIS and Boko Haram are. This book was respectfully and compassionately written by Nabeel after being raised in a devout American-Muslim family and experiencing 9-11. This tragic day made him question and seek the truth from Islam's original source texts, the Quran and Hadith, about what Islam taught regarding jihad. Nabeel helps us wrestle with questions like "Who are the true Muslims - violent or peaceful Muslims?" and "do Muslims and Christians worship the same god?" Jihad is also explored in a Judeo-Christian context. All the while we see Nabeel's respect for humanity, which is refreshing and necessary when exploring a topic like this. I appreciate that while Nabeel is very well educated (degrees in medicine from Eastern Virginia Medical School, Christian apologetics from Biola University, and religion from Duke University, while currently pursuing a doctorate in New Testament studies at Oxford University) and respected (he has lectured at over 100 universities and participated in 18 public debates around the world), he has made this book very readable. Not only is the book understandable but it is organized in an easy-to-read way. Each chapter addresses a specific question - eighteen in all - and by the end you come away with a much better grasp of Islam like no other source I have seen. The back of the book has a glossary as well as four appendixes which aids in comprehension and allows you to dig deeper into the topics explored. This book is a must read for people seeking to better understand Islam.
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