Course Approaches to Islam in 2024

You can start the course Approaches to Islam, any time and continue at your own speed.

Background information on this course

The course Approaches to Islam consists of 28 lessons.  The course assumes a basic knowledge of Islam. You can 'test' your knowledge in the first quiz. Each lesson contains one or more video's and one or more assignments. These assignments need to be uploaded and will be read. Each lesson has to be completed before you can move on to the next. The total course, including assignments will take between 30 and 40 hours. It gives you a good basis for developing your ministry among Muslims. At the end there is a exam you can take, if you want.  You can take this course individually, but also as a class. If your study at an institution, and want to do this course for credits, let the institution contact me.


Bert de Ruiter

Bert de Ruiter is a staff worker of ECM in Europe and the European Evangelical Alliance. He has been involved in Christian-Muslim relations in Europe for more than 30 years. He got an MA in World Missions and a D.Min. in Christian-Muslim relations. He is also an associate faculty of Tyndale Theological Seminary in Amsterdam. He written several courses and books related to Christian-Muslim relations. Bert lives in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, is married and has two children and five grandchildren.

What others say

Melvin and Louise Ho

The course Approaches to Muslims as taught by Dr. Bert de Ruiter is one of most helpful and comprehensive courses for anyone seeking to learn how to build bridges with Muslims or for persons who are preparing for their personal careers that involve living, serving and working in Muslim communities. Approaches to Islam, provides a survey of the historical relationship between the Christian faith and Islam since the 7th century as well as significant interactions between the followers of both faiths. Lessons from the various responses of Christians and Christianity towards Islam and its adherents are highlighted. The particular and most valuable aspect of this course is the identification and the critical evaluation of the diverse approaches and forms of ministry to Muslims in different historical, geographical and cultural contexts. Students will benefit deeply by this exposure to the rich variety of approaches resulting in their ability to formulate their own approach or approaches to Islam and to Muslims especially in Europe- approaches that are consistent both to the spirit and truth of God found in the Bible. This course is both academically rigorous and profoundly practical. Dr. Bert de Ruiter utilizes substantial academic as well as relevant multi- media, digital resources in teaching this course. As a person, he is academically equipped and he has vast practical experience derived from many years of ministry to and among Muslims. Dr. de Ruiter is a committed follower of Christ and is genuinely respected by Muslims. Melvin and Louise Ho VPE Ministry to Muslims coordinators Amsterdam Institute of Islamic Studies Coordinators

Course curriculum

  • 1

    Lesson 1: The religion of Islam: its core beliefs and practices

    • Test your knowledge about Islam

    • The religion of Islam: its core beliefs and practices

    • Interview assignment

  • 2

    Lesson 2: Important Questions about Islam

    • Important questions about Islam

  • 3

    Lesson 3 Characteristics of the Church when Islam began and its implications for today

    • Assignment 1: If you were the only Christian.....

    • Characteristics of the Church when Islam began

    • Assignment 2: How would you explain that Jesus is both God and man?

  • 4

    Lesson 4 The history of Christian responses to Islam

    • The history of Christian responses to Islam

    • Assignment 3: Reflect on the lessons from the life and ministry of a historic person

  • 5

    Lesson 5 The Church and Islam: lessons from the past: John of Damascus

    • What we can learn from John of Damascus

    • A Dialogue between a Christian and a Saracene

    • Assignment 4: Read the "Dialogue between a Christian and Saracen" and comment on it.

  • 6

    Lesson 6 -The Church and Islam: lessons from the past: Mar Timothy I

    • Lessons from the life of Mar Timothy I

    • Assignment 5: What do you think of Muhammad?

  • 7

    Lesson 7- The Church and Islam: lessons from the past: Peter the Venerable

    • Lessons from the life of Peter the Venerable

  • 8

    Lesson 8 - The Church and Islam: lessons from the past: Raymond Lull

    • lessons from the life of Raymond Lull

  • 9

    Lesson 9 - The Church and Islam: lessons from the past: Karl Pfander

    • lessons from the ministry of Karl Pfander

  • 10

    Lesson 10 - The Church and Islam - lessons from the past: Lilias Trotter

    • lessons from the life of Lilias Trotter

    • Turn your eyes upon Jesus

  • 11

    Lesson 11 - The Church and Islam -lessons from the past: Samuel Zwemer

    • lessons from Samuel Zwemer

    • Assignment 6: write a letter to the leadership of your church

  • 12

    Lesson 12 - The Church and Islam, lessons from the past: Constance Padwick

    • lessons from the life and ministry of Constance Padwick

    • The Fatiha and the Lord's Prayer

    • Assignment 7: compare Fatiha and Lord's prayer

  • 13

    Lesson 13 -The Church and Islam, lessons from the past: Kenneth Cragg

    • lessons from the ministry of Kenneth Cragg

    • Assignment 8: Do you agree with Cragg?

  • 14

    Lesson 14 -Different models of engaging with Muslims

    • Spectrum of Christian-Muslim Interaction (SEKAP)

  • 15

    Lesson 15 - The role of institutions

    • The role of institutions

    • Assignment 9: are Christian institutions valuable?

  • 16

    Lesson 16- Spirit first

    • Assignment 10: How would you explain the Holy Spirit?

    • The Spirit-first

  • 17

    Lesson 17 -Grace

    • Assignment 11: How do you define 'grace'?

    • Grace Approach

    • Grace and Truth: Toward Christlike Relationships with Muslims: An Affirmation

    • Assignment 12: reflection on grace in the parable of the prodigal son

  • 18

    Lesson 18 -Proclamation

    • Assignment 13: a five minute conversation

    • Proclamation

    • Assignment 14: Develop a Story

  • 19

    Lesson 19 - Power Encounter: response to Folk Islam

    • Assignment 15 answer some questions about power encounter

    • Power Encounter: our response to Folk Islam

  • 20

    Lesson 20 -Reconciliation

    • Reconciliation

    • Assignment 16: identify strengths and weaknesses of reconciliation

    • Jesus' comprehensive peace plan

    • Assignment 17: develop your personal peace plan

    • The Imam and the Pastor: a great example of reconciliation approach

  • 21

    Lesson 21 - Confrontation

    • Confrontation

    • Defending our faith against questions by Muslims

    • Assignment 18: answering two questions

    • Interview with Jay Smith on confrontation

  • 22

    Lesson 22 - Dialogue

    • Dialogue

    • A common Word (summary)

    • Assignment 19: read A Common Word and write your response

    • John Piper's criticism of one Christian response to "A Common Word"

  • 23

    Lesson 23 - Contextualization

    • Contextualization

    • Assignment 20: How would you contextualize?

    • Examples of contextualization

  • 24

    Lesson 24 - The use of dreams

    • The use of dreams

    • Assignment 21: Reflect about dreams in your own life

  • 25

    Lesson 25 - The use of the Qur'an

    • The use of the Qur'an

    • Assignment 22: read Sura 3: 42-55 and comment

    • a BMB explains the role of the Qur'an

  • 26

    Lesson 26 -The W-Spectrum and what we need to do

    • The W-Spectrum and what we need to do

    • The W-Spectrum: Worker Paradigms in Muslim Contexts

    • Assignment 23: Look at the W Spectrum and answer two questions

  • 27

    Lesson 27 - Theological issues between Islam and Christianity

    • TheologicaI issues between Islam and Christianity

    • Assignment 24: read Galatians 3: 21-31 and explain

  • 28

    Lesson 28 - God at work

    • God at work among Muslims

    • Thank God

  • 29

    Exam quiz

    • Exam quiz

  • 30

    Evaluation of the course

    • Evaluation form