There has been much written on Islam since 9/11 and, frankly, much of it isn’t worth the paper it is written on. It is reactionary, stereotypical, based on limited study, and/or mean-spirited – and I am talking about books published by Christian companies and for sale in most Christian book stores.

As I have studied Islam for over a decade now, and have often taught on the subject, I have often been asked what book I recommend and I almost always said Answering Islam by Norm Geissler and Abdul Saleeb as the best starting point. However that is officially changing.

I still highly recommend Geissler – its just that some may find it tough to get through. Instead, my new recommended starting place is Encountering the World of Islam edited by Keith Swartley.

Encountering is a collection of short essays written by a variety of experts and very well arranged by topic – moving from very basic history and introductory material through Islamic doctrine, culture, history of outreach to missions, etc to very practical tips on sharing your faith with Muslims and how to pray for them. You would think that a book of over 500 pages written by a variety of authors would be confusing and/or contradictory. However, the flow of this book is amazing. When differing viewpoints are presented (which is not often) it is done so in a respectful manner, which allows the reader to judge both sides.

This book is available from