Can non-Christians be evangelical?

Can non-Christians be evangelical?

Can non-Christians be evangelical?

Though Christian evangelism has held steady while mainline denominations have hemorrhaged members, a pastor and an apologist don't necessarily see a reason for Christians to celebrate.

American Family News recently reported that a poll of born-again Christian believers shows that an overwhelming majority think all roads lead to Heaven. And now, data compiled by Ryan Burge of Eastern Illinois University shows that half of all Muslims who attend mosque more than once a week and align with the GOP self-identify as evangelical.

Jeffress, Rev. Robert (FBC Dallas) Jeffress

When Muslims, Hindus, Mormons, or Catholics, etc. say they are "evangelical," Dr. Robert Jeffress of First Baptist Dallas says it is a political statement, not a religious one. He calls it a misunderstanding of the term.

"But it's a purposeful misunderstanding," the pastor adds. "I think the left has tried to conflate Republicanism with evangelicalism in order to shame and silence evangelicals from speaking out on issues that have a biblical basis."

The "evangelical" Muslims and others are merely caught up in the deception, and Christian apologist Dr. Alex McFarland says real evangelicals need to work harder at correctly defining the term.

McFarland, Alex (Christian apologist) McFarland

"As a Christian, we've always got to help people be reminded that the word 'evangelical' refers to Jesus Christ," McFarland submits. "The 'evangel' is the good news – the good news that Christ died for our sins and that through faith in Jesus we can be saved."

In the midst of the current confusion, Jeffress says it is important that evangelicals maintain their commitment to political involvement when public policies intersect with biblical truth.

"I don't think we ought to take the bait of the left and say, 'Well, we're never going to speak out on political issues because we don't want to confuse people,'" the pastor adds.