Every day the news reports on ISIS/ISIL and whether Islam is a religion of peace or a religion that promotes war. While people will likely continue to argue over that question for a long time, every Christian needs to understand what Islam teaches. Recognizing the importance of understanding Islam, R.C. Sproul and Abdul Saleeb wrote an enlightening expose titled, The Dark Side of Islam.
This book is structured around a series of conversations about Islam and how it differs from Christianity. Saleeb, a convert from Islam, has spent many years studying the differences between Islam and Christianity. With Dr. Sproul, he focuses on four basic areas in which Islam rejects the foundations of biblical Christianity: first, the nature and authority of the Bible; second, the nature of God; third, the character of humankind; and finally the deity and sacrificial death of Christ.
As you read this book, the authors will guide you in not only understanding Islam, but will also help you to answer questions and objections about the Christian faith from your Muslim neighbors and friends. Along the way, the authors ansswer the question, “Is Islam a religion of violence or peace?” from Saleeb’s firsthand knowledge and experience of Islam. He is right to note that Islam has a history of violence and that, “We should be aware of the religious roots of violence in Islam and to take this background more seriously…” (100). With that said, Saleeb’s ultimate goal is to help take “God’s people back to the cross and ask Christ for the strength and courage to witness to our Muslim friends, colaborers, colleagues, and neighbors—to witness to them with greater boldness and love and humility…” (100).
Whether you’ve wondered what the differences are between Islam and Christianity, or you’re familiar with them, I encourage you to read The Dark Side of Islam. While I’ve previously studied the differences between Islam and Christianity as outlined by Saleeb and Sproul in this book, I still benefited from reading this book, and believe you will also. I highly recommend this book to every Christian who desires to understand not only the theological differences, but also how to speak the truth in love to Muslims.