Islam and Christianity: Theological Themes in Comparative Perspective

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In light of the widespread public perception of incompatibility between Islam and Christianity, this book provides a much-needed straightforward comparison of these two great faith traditions from a broad theological perspective. Award-winning scholar John Renard illuminates the similarities as well as the differences between Islam and Christianity through a clear exploration of four major dimensions—historical, creedal, institutional, and ethical and spiritual. Throughout, the book features comparisons between concrete elements such as creedal statements, prayer texts, and writings from major theologians and mystics. It also includes a glossary of technical theological terms. For western readers in particular, this balanced, authoritative work overturns some common stereotypes about Islam, especially those that have emerged in the decade since September 11, 2001.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Perfectly functional, remarkably insightful, and a little bit controversial."--American Theological Inquiry

"Without glossing over fundamental differences between Christianity and Islam . . . Renard shows how the reality has often been more nuanced."--Times Literary Supplement (Tls)

"Outstanding Academic Title for 2011. . . . Highly recommended."--Choice

"One of the best books available for use in courses comparing Muslim and Christian thought."--Journal of Islamic Studies

"Renard has a good grasp on what is important, foundational, and formative across a multitude of disciplines in both religious traditions."--State of Formation

American Theological Inquiry

“Perfectly functional, remarkably insightful, and a little bit controversial.”
Times Literary Supplement (TLS)

“Without glossing over fundamental differences between Christianity and Islam . . . Renard shows how the reality has often been more nuanced.”
Choice - P. S. Spalding

“Outstanding Academic Title for 2011. . . . Highly recommended.”
Journal Of Islamic Studies

"One of the best books available for use in courses comparing Muslim and Christian thought."
Religious Studies Review - Matthew Friedman

“Written with sensitivity and beauty.”
State Of Formation

“Renard has a good grasp on what is important, foundational, and formative across a multitude of disciplines in both religious traditions.”
Islamochristiana - John Loboka Morris

“John Renard offers, in this beautiful book, a new contribution in the field of comparative study of Christianity and Islam.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520255081
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 3/8/2011
  • Pages: 344
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

John Renard is Professor of Theological Studies at Saint Louis University. His many books include Seven Doors to Islam: Spirituality and the Religious Life of Muslims, Windows on the House of Islam, Friends of God: Islamic Images of Piety, Commitment, and Servanthood, and Tales of God's Friends: Islamic Hagiography in Translation, all from UC Press.

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Table of Contents


Prologue: Christian-Muslim Theological Dialogue in Retrospect
Introduction: Theological Themes and Subdisciplines

Part I. Historical Dimensions:
Interpreting God’s Communication and Divine Engagement in Time and Space
1. Sacred Sources and Community Origins
2. Development and Spread

Part II. Creedal Dimensions: Faith and the Development of Theology as a Religious Discipline
3. From Story to Creed
4. The Emergence of Theological Disciplines

Part III.
Institutional Dimensions: The Structures of Theologically Grounded Community
5. Beneath the Brick and Mortar
Institutions in Action

Part IV. Ethical and Spiritual Dimensions: Mapping Outward and
Inward Journeys of Faith
7. Sources, Methods, and Social Values in Theological Ethics
8. Sources and Models in Traditions of Spirituality
9. Themes in Prayer and Mystical Theology

Epilogue: Reflections on the Prospects for Christian-Muslim Theological Dialogue

Notes Theological Glossary Selected Bibliography General
Index of Biblical and Qur’anic Citations

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