Jesus, Jihad and Peace: What Bible Prophecy Says About World Events Today 

Michael Youssef

Review by S. Craig Sanders

(Worthy Publishing 2015, $12)

In Jesus, Jihad and Peace, Islamic scholar Michael Youssef explores the rising global tension between Islam and Christianity, demonstrating how God is displaying his eschatological purpose through current events.

“In a world that is crying out for peace, which will prevail: Jesus or jihad?” Youssef writes in the introduction. “Do recent global events reveal that we are living in the end times?”

Don’t let the subtitle mislead you — Youssef, who is founding pastor of The Church of The Apostles in Atlanta, insists the book is not “exploiting end-times mania.” Rather, Youssef examines the theology and origins of Islam to show how “militant Islam is the original and authentic Islam of the seventh century.”

While Youssef ventures into the geopolitical conflicts and the threat to Israel, he devotes most of his attention to the intersection of Islamic and Christian eschatology. Both “focus on a messianic Savior, an apocalyptic final war between good and evil, and a central role of the city of Jerusalem,” Youssef writes.

Youssef distinguishes between the basic beliefs of Islam and Christianity, including the Christian belief in a “personal relationship with the God of the universe” and the free offer of God to sinners.

“Christianity is spread by attraction and conversion. Islam is spread by conquest and subjugation,” Youssef writes.

With the emergence of jihadist groups around the globe, Youssef’s book is both relevant and timeless. He observes the aims of militant Muslims “to conquer the world and eradicate all other religions,” while also providing insight into the centuries-old beliefs that motivate such groups.

Youssef’s prophetic voice and pastoral heart unite in this work to point to the divine peace found only in Jesus Christ.


Jesus, the Temple and the Coming Son of Man 

Robert H. Stein Review by Andrew J.W. Smith

(IVP Academic 2014, $18)

The Olivet Discourse in Mark 13 seemingly has as many interpretations as interpreters. In Jesus, the Temple and the Coming Son of Man, Robert H. Stein, retired professor of New Testament interpretation at Southern Seminary, ably guides readers through the complex hermeneutical and exegetical issues involved in Jesus’ “Little Apocalypse” discourse.

Stein, who has also written a full commentary on the Gospel of Mark, argues that the first half of Mark 13 refers to the imminent destruction of the temple in Jerusalem, and the second half warns about the eschatological coming of the Son of Man, which will occur at a future unknown hour. His explanations for the more enigmatic details — like “the abomination of desolation” (13:14) and what Jesus means by “this generation will not pass away until all these things take place” (13:30) — are particularly helpful.


With the Clouds of Heaven: The Book of Daniel
in Biblical Theology

James M. Hamilton Jr. Review by RuthAnne Irvin

(InterVarsity Press 2014, $25)

In his new book, With the Clouds of Heaven: The Book of Daniel in Biblical Theology, Southern Seminary professor James M. Hamilton Jr. examines the biblical theology of a book often studied more for its eschatological insight.

“Daniel presented his book as an installment in the larger story, a story that began in Eden, and his book carries that story all the way to its consummation at the end of days,” Hamilton writes.

Hamilton begins with an overview of biblical theology, the canon of Scripture, and a chapter-by-chapter preview of Daniel. He reviews the salvation history and literary structure in Daniel. Writing in-depth about the four kingdoms, Hamilton connects them to the end of times in Revelation.

American Apocalypse: A History of Modern Evangelicalism 

Matthew Avery Sutton Review by Paul Baity

(Harvard 2014, $35)

Fundamentalism in America is, for many, not a topic of history. Matthew Avery Sutton, however, writes in this book on the global, political, and cultural forces that gave rise to the brand of evangelicalism that dominated the United States for almost a century.

Sutton returns to primary sources to demonstrate how the horror of two World Wars, the pressure of theological liberalism, and the reigning spirit of nationalism shaped American Christianity and paved the way for the rapid advance of premillennial eschatology throughout American culture.

Sutton’s well-researched account allows the words of his fundamentalist and modernist subjects to tell the story of American evangelicalism. From the genesis of the fundamentalist movement to modern debates on premillennialism, Sutton documents the growth of radical evangelicalism through the challenges of modernism and the Scopes Trial, and how the interdenominational movement took a nation by storm.