Try this instead: “It’s encouraging to find grateful Christians who are struggling to become people of God. We’re out there and eager to have you join our community, regardless of what you may believe today.”

I understand the importance of our theologically rich Christian language, and as a Christian I often use similar words when talking with Christians. But when I’m talking with unbelievers, I try to think about how I used to hear and interpret these words before I became a Christian. How do I share what I believe? I take the time to translate important Christian concepts for those who might be willing to entertain the ideas if only I was willing to speak their language.

This post is excerpted from my article, “What Cops Can Teach Christians about the Critical Use of Language” first published in the Christian Research Journal. The Christian Research Journal equips Christians with the information they need to discern doctrinal errors, evangelize people of other faiths, and provide a strong defense of Christian beliefs and ethics.

J. Warner Wallace is a Cold-Case Detective, a Christian Case Maker, and the author of Cold-Case Christianity and ALIVE

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