God: A Very Short Introduction

ISBN : 9780198708957

John Bowker
160 Pages
114 x 173 mm
Pub date
Sep 2014
Very Short Introductions


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  • Explores how theologians and philosophers have tried to answer some of the key questions about God
  • Considers why some people believe in a God and others do not
  • Looks at a variety of different religious interpretations
  • Considers what belief in God means for religious life in practice

Who or what is God? How do different religions interpret God's existence? How can we know God? 

Many people believe in God; not just throughout history but also in the present day. But who or what is it they believe in? Many different and sometimes conflicting answers have been suggested to this question. This Very Short Introduction explores some of the answers provided by philosophers, poets, and theologians, and considers why some people believe in God and others do not.

John Bowker explores how the major religions established their own distinctive beliefs about God and how they interpret God's existence, and concludes by looking at how our understanding of God continues to evolve.


1: Does God exist?
2: Why believe in God?
3: The religions of Abraham: Jewish understandings of God.
4: The religions of Abraham: Christian understandings of God.
5: The religions of Abraham: Muslim understandings of God.
6: Religions of India
7: On knowing and not knowing God
Further reading

About the author: 

John Bowker is a professor of religious studies who has taught at the universities of Cambridge, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina State University. He is an Honorary Canon of Canterbury Cathedral, a consultant for UNESCO, as well as a BBC broadcaster and author and editor of several books including: Beliefs That Changed the World (Quercus, 2007); World Religions (Dorling Kindersley, 2006); The Sacred Neuron: The Extraordinary New Discoveries Linking Science and Religion (Palgrave MacMillan, 2005); God: A Brief History; and The Oxford Dictionary of World Religions (OUP, 1997).

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