The Children of Abraham: Judaism, Christianity, Islam

The Children of Abraham: Judaism, Christianity, Islam

Paperback Princeton Classic Editions

By (author) F. E. Peters, Foreword by John L. Esposito

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  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Format: Paperback | 264 pages
  • Dimensions: 140mm x 211mm x 15mm | 340g
  • Publication date: 10 September 2006
  • Publication City/Country: New Jersey
  • ISBN 10: 0691127697
  • ISBN 13: 9780691127699
  • Edition: New edition
  • Edition statement: New edition
  • Sales rank: 305,397

Product description

F.E. Peters, a scholar without peer in the comparative study of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, revisits his pioneering work after twenty-five years. Peters has rethought and thoroughly rewritten his classic The Children of Abraham for a new generation of readers-at a time when the understanding of these three religious traditions has taken on a new and critical urgency. He began writing about all three faiths in the 1970s, long before it was fashionable to treat Islam in the context of Judaism and Christianity, or to align all three for a family portrait. In this updated edition, he lays out the similarities and differences of the three religious siblings with great clarity and succinctness and with that same remarkable objectivity that is the hallmark of all the author's work. Peters traces the three faiths from the sixth century B.C., when the Jews returned to Palestine from exile in Babylonia, to the time in the Middle Ages when they approached their present form. He points out that all three faith groups, whom the Muslims themselves refer to as "People of the Book," share much common ground. Most notably, each embraces the practice of worshipping a God who intervenes in history on behalf of His people. The book's text is direct and accessible with thorough and nuanced discussions of each of the three religions. Updated footnotes provide the reader with expert guidance into the highly complex issues that lie between every line of this stunning and timely new edition of The Children of Abraham.

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Author information

F.E. Peters is Professor of Middle Eastern Studies, History, and Religion at New York University. John L. Esposito is University Professor of Religion and International Affairs and Founding Director of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at the Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University.

Review quote

One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 2005 "As John L. Esposito makes clear in his helpful foreword, Professor F.E. Peters' revision of this important, accessible discussion of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic tradition is a welcome contribution for a new generation of readers facing an international political environment where respectful engagement is imperative."--Jewish Book World "The new edition of Francis E. Peters' The Children of Abraham: Judaism, Christianity, Islam ... is written in a direct and accessible style with thorough and nuanced discussions of each of the three Abrahamic traditions. It is a welcome contribution for a new generation of readers facing an international political environment where respectful engagement is imperative. Updated footnotes provide expert guidance to the highly complex issues... We have to try our best to understand other religions and our own. Perhaps Peters' book can help us in this."--Horst Jesse, European Legacy

Back cover copy

"I know of no more measured and thoughtful historical survey of the formative development of the conjoined tradition of Jewish, Christian, and Islamic thought and practice than this one."--William A. Graham, Dean, Harvard Divinity School""The Children of Abraham" is a concise introduction to the work of a scholar who thinks about every aspect of Judaism, Christianity, or Islam 'in triplicate.' This new edition deserves a warm welcome."--Jack Miles, author of "God: A Biography and Christ: A Crisis in the Life of God""For many years this book has occupied a treasured spot on my shelves and I have recommended it countless times. A new, substantially rewritten edition could not be more welcome. There is simply no other volume that presents such broad erudition in a compact, accessible, and beautifully written format."--Jane Dammen McAuliffe, general editor of the "Encyclopaedia of the Qur'an"""The Children of Abraham" is one of the first synoptic presentations of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam that compares the structures of the three religions without asserting the superiority of any one of them. Fully revised, this new edition reflects current scholarship in the field and contains new footnotes and chapter subheads that make it even more user friendly than before. The book will appeal to teachers of comparative religion as well as to historians looking for a concise narrative about Christianity, Judaism, or Islam. The general reader will find it engaging, too."--Mark Cohen, Princeton University

Flap copy

""The Children of Abraham" is a concise introduction to the work of a scholar who thinks about every aspect of Judaism, Christianity, or Islam 'in triplicate.' This new edition deserves a warm welcome."--Jack Miles, author of "God: A Biography and Christ: A Crisis in the Life of God""For many years this book has occupied a treasured spot on my shelves and I have recommended it countless times. A new, substantially rewritten edition could not be more welcome. There is simply no other volume that presents such broad erudition in a compact, accessible, and beautifully written format."----Jane Dammen McAuliffe, general editor of the "Encyclopaedia of the Qur'an"""The Children of Abraham" is one of the first synoptic presentations of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam that compares the structures of the three religions without asserting the superiority of any one of them. Fully revised, this new edition reflects current scholarship in the field and contains new footnotes and chapter subheads that make it even more user friendly than before. The book will appeal to teachers of comparative religion as well as to historians looking for a concise narrative about Christianity, Judaism, or Islam. The general reader will find it engaging, too."--Mark Cohen, Princeton University

Table of contents

Foreword by John L.Esposito ix Preface to the New Edition xv Preface xvii INTRODUCTION The Scriptures: Some Preliminary Notions 1 CHAPTER ONE The Promise and the Heirs 7 CHAPTER TWO A Contested Inheritance 21 CHAPTER THREE Community and Hierarchy 41 CHAPTER FOUR The Law 67 CHAPTER FIVE Scripture and Tradition 85 CHAPTER SIX The Worship of God 103 CHAPTER SEVEN Renunciation and Aspiration 116 CHAPTER EIGHT Thinking and Talking about God 138 EPILOGUE Sacred History 167 Notes 173 Glossary 213 Index 227