Book Review of Understanding the Arab-Israeli Conflict: What the Headlines Haven’t told You

Michael Rydelnik, Understanding the Arab-Israeli Conflict: What the Headlines Haven’t Told You

  • Paperback: 247 pages
  • Publisher: Moody Publishers, 2004, 2007
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 978-0802426239

Rydelnik, a converted Jew, is Professor of Jewish Studies at Moody Bible Institute.  He also has a son who moved to Israel as a Jewish citizen in order to have a ministry among the Israelis, and who is currently serving in the Israeli army in the West Bank. So his interest in the subject is personal as well as professional.  He overviews the modern history of Israel, describes the history of the conflict between Israel and Arabs, identifies the major players (including a glossary of multiple Arab terrorist organizations), and documents the biased reporting of the popular press. The book is valuable because the events of Israel are not merely of temporary local interest but of international and biblical significance.

Personal Note About the Author: My interest in Rydelnik began when I met him unexpectedly on a flight to Israel in May 2011. He was friendly and delighted to discover that our group was from BJU. Dr. Rydelnik—professor of Jewish Studies at Moody Bible Institute—has a fascinating personal history. He grew up in an orthodox Jewish home, his parents both Holocaust survivors. When he was a teen, his mother revealed a shocking secret: she confessed that she had actually been a believer in Jesus ever since she was 13. The announcement enraged her husband, who eventually divorced her, as well as her son (Michael) who now had to live with this traitor to the Jewish faith. He set himself the task of proving to his mother that Jesus could not possibly the Messiah and, in the process, became a convinced believer in Christ.

Reviewed by: Layton Talbert, Ph.D., Professor of Theology in BJU Seminary.

This book is available at


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