2014 Spring Online Course

Theo 64286, “The Qur’an and Its Relation to the Bible”
Prof. Gabriel Reynolds
residential course meets Tues/Thurs 2-3:15

Course Description: “To most Muslims the Qur'ān is the eternal, uncreated Word of God.  For them the Qurʾan is not an inspired scripture like the Bible.  Instead it is like Christ: a divine Word descended from heaven.  It is perfect in regard to its literary qualities, its accounts of nations and prophets, and its scientific references.  Islamic reverence for the Qurʾan is seen in the way Muslims kiss the book before opening it, and are careful never to place another book on top of it.  From the perspective of academic scholars, however, the Qur'ān is a poorly understood text.  Scholars are divided over the precise historical context in which the Qurʾan emerged, its connection to the life of Muhammad, and its relation to the Bible and other religious literature.    In this course we will examine the Qurʾan itself, traditional Islamic teaching on the Qurʾan, and academic controversies over the Qurʾan.  In addition we will examine the connection of the Qurʾan to Christian theology.  Indeed it should be remembered that the Qur'ān is fundamentally concerned with the great figures of Biblical tradition, including Abraham, Moses, Mary, and Jesus.  Moreover, the Qur'ān repeatedly refutes Christian doctrine.  Thus it is an important text for anyone interested in the relationship between Islam and Christianity, or the relations between Muslims and Christians, in past centuries or in our age.”