When Religion Becomes Lethal: The Explosive Mix of Politics and Religion in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam / Edition 1

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"Building on decades of experience witnessing and affecting change in the Middle East, Charles Kimball gives a rich examination of religious conflict from the vantage point of a peacemaker. In a world torn by religious extremism, this book provides a pragmatic, hopeful, and much-needed tool for those who seek an honest dialogue of change."
Jim Wallis, founder and CEO, Sojourners, and author, Rediscovering Values

"Informed by the best of scholarship and his own extensive experiences and insights, Charles Kimball's When Religion Becomes Lethal is an engaging and riveting must-read on how the interplay of religion and politics in the three great monotheistic traditions can and has led to dangerous and deadly consequences."
John L. Esposito, professor, religion and international affairs, Georgetown University, and author, The Future of Islam

"With the courage and clarity of the great reformers and the vision of the prophets, Charles Kimball sets before us the potential of communities of faith in which each honors all."
Rev. Dr. Joan Brown Campbell, director, Department of Religion, Chautauqua Institution

"At a time when the line between the sacred and secular is slowly fading away in all parts of the world, we need Kimball's steady hand, wit, intelligence, and smart analysis to guide us toward a saner future."
Reza Aslan, author, No god but God and Beyond Fundamentalism

"In this stunning book, Kimball sheds light on the most dangerous religious movements of our time. His deep understanding of the landscape of religious extremism—Jewish, Christian, and Muslim—is shaped by decades of firsthand experience with religious and political leaders in the United States and the Middle East. This is a critical book for navigating today's perilous and explosive religious landscape."
Diana Eck, professor, comparative religion, and director, The Pluralism Project at Harvard University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470581902
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/12/2011
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 733,576
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Charles Kimball, Th.D., is presidential professor and director of religious studies at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, Oklahoma. An ordained Baptist minister, he is a frequent lecturer in universities and church-related settings as well as an expert analyst on issues related to the Middle East, Islam, Jewish-Christian-Muslim relations, and the intersection of religion and politics. He is the author of five books, including the bestselling When Religion Becomes Evil.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

1 Christmas with the Ayatollah: The Volatile Mix of Religion and Politics 1

2 God Gave Us This Land: The Roots of Religion and Politics in Judaism 15

3 Israel: Deadly Confl ict in Zion 33

4 "Render unto Caesar": Religion and Politics in Christianity 58

5 America: One Nation Under God? 75

6 There Is No God But God: Religion and Politics in Islam 96

7 Muslim vs. Muslim: The Struggle for the Soul of Islam 120

8 Iran and Iraq: Axis of Evil or Harbinger of Hope? 137

9 A Road to Disaster: The Fallacy of Fundamentalism 157

10 Hope for the Perilous Journey Ahead 178

Notes 193

Selected Bibliography 229

The Author 233

Name Index 235

Subject index 241

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2013

    Great Study Book

    We are using this book at our church for weekly chapter discussions.
    It is very informative and well written. Raises good questions causing more research and sharing among those who want to really understand how extreme views overshadow the important messages of the three Abrahamic religions.

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  • Posted May 26, 2011


    In light of current events over the past decade, this book is relevant to us individually, as American people, and as part of a global society. The author gives us insight into the dangers of religious movements that, when sanctioned by the state to promote violence, wreak havoc on our culture. As in his first book, he examines religious extremism of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam world-wide. Well-written and very readable, Kimball certainly did his research and the book is well documented.

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