According to the 2011 edition of the 500 Most Influential Muslims, Dr. Timothy Winter (Sheikh Abdal-Hakim Murad):
is Britain’s leading Muslim scholar and one of the most well-respected Western theologians in the Muslim World. He has written on various topics including British Muslim history and theological discourse. Winter teaches theology at Cambridge University and is the director of Studies in Theology at Wolfson College in Cambridge…He is the director of the Sunnah project, which has published the foremost scholarly Arabic editions of the major Sunni Hadith collections.
I found the following two videos interesting and informative. Dr. Winter gives a fascinating explanation about “Ezra” in Quran 9:2 that periodically comes up in polemics against the Quran (the mention of “Ezra” in Quran 9:2).
Timothy Winter is interesed in working toward an “Abrahamic Counter Culture” in opposition to secularism or atheism and working toward an “Abrahamic Hospitality” toward other monotheistic religions: Islam, Christianity, and Judaism.
Timothy Winter says Christianity and Islam have a different attitude toward Scripture:
- Christianity – Word made flesh.
- Islam – Word made book.
Timothy Winters says in Christianity the Scriptures are more like the Islamic hadith. In Islam, the Qur’an is God’s uncreated speech. The Qur’an is how Muslims experience the sacred in the world.
Timothy Winters says Judaism is quite similar to Islam in the way it does business with God. This may be true for rabinnic Judaism, but I don’t think it is true for the Judaism in the time of Moses or Solomon which emphasized God’s presence in terms of tabernacle/temple.
Timothy Winter talks about how the parallel between Word made flesh and Word made book is not exact. Christians worship Jesus, but Muslims do not worship the Qur’an.
Timothy Winter does not seem to understand the significance of God’s personal presence with His people in the Hebrew Scriptures: Garden of Eden, burning bush, Mount Sinai, tabernacle/temple, etc. In Islam, Allah is much more removed from creation and Muslims than Yahweh is present with His people in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures.
Dr. Winter talks about the miracle of the Quran’s conquest and conversion of the world.
Timothy Winter discusses the only verse in the Quran that denounces Jewish beliefs – “Ezra” the “Son of God”:
Dr. Winter explains that this is probably not to the biblical prophet, Ezra. Rather, the Quran is opposing the Jewish belief in “metatron“. He says metatron was the object of many Jews’ worship. Dr. Winter says the Qur’an is taking the Jewish Karaite view over and against the Rabaanite view.
Timothy Winter says the Quran has much more to say about Christianity: 2:162; 5:14 [critique of discord in Christianity],82; 57:27.
Timothy Winter discusses passages in the Quran about the Virgin Mary (3:32; 19:16-19; 9:30).
Timothy Winter asks the question whether Christians are idolators. He says the general view is, “No.” Muslims believe the Christian view of God is a grievous error – possibly a fatal error – but it is not shirk or polytheism.
Timothy Winter mentions a Common Word which affirms what Muslims and Christians hold in common: love of God and love of neighbor. “Common Word” is based on Quran 3:64.
Dr. Winter says he believes that the Christian doctrine of the Trinity, properly understood, can be conceived of as a monotheistic doctrine, but it’s easy to misunderstand.