Adapted from VOICE, July/Aug 2015. Used with permission.
During recent years I have been able to present a seminar in several churches aimed at helping them more effectively and lovingly evangelize lost Roman Catholic people. When I receive feedback from the participants, one of the most helpful parts of the seminar seems to be the comparison of terms that are differently understood by most Roman Catholic and evangelicals.
Often evangelicals will conclude that a particular Roman Catholic person is saved because of the use of certain terms. They may say, “Yes I was born again,” or “Yes, I have received Christ,” or “Yes, I believe I am going to heaven based on faith.” However, in many cases their Catholic friend actually means something different than our Bible-based understanding.
The differences in meaning are real and determinative when one attempts to communicate the biblical grace gospel. God gave us the Holy Scriptures as a written revelation of “words,” words with intended meaning, and meaning with intention of being understood.