Evangelical Friend - and his love for message version!

I have recently been received into the RCC and I am so happy with my decision. I was baptised into the Anglican church but never really thought of myself as an active Christian until last year. It’s a long story and I’ll post another time.

My reason for posting. I have a friend whom I love dearly, he is like a father to me but I’m having difficulty with his Evangelical approach to Chrisitianity and in particular his liking for The Message Version of the Bible. He’s mentioned it a few times but I’ve only recently discovered what the Message version is. I was horrified and so offended by the version of the Lords Prayer. There is very little chance that he will embrace Catholicism but is there any way I can persuade him to switch to a regular Bible version within the Protestant Canon( NIV or KJV)?

He also attends a Mega Church and I also have issues with this area too. I don’t want to offend my friend but I would like him to move away from Evangelical protestantism. How do I raise this without causing offence?

I am from England and live in the UK. My friend is also English but lives in Florida and has an American wife.


Welcome to the faith.:thumbsup:

The Message is a very loose translation usually only those who are new to reading the bible use them. Then they go to a more literal bible for serious study. It can be found at BibleGateway.com they have several versions one can view. Suggest he compare a more literal version to the Message version


biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%206:7&version=MSG The Lord prayer in the Message bible

Have you considered giving him one as a gift?
What could be a more wonderful expression of love between Christians?


I’ve never heard of this.
What is the message version? :confused:


I suggest you purchase a copy of the Message Bible and read it. I suggest you share with your friend what you like about it and also what you don’t like about it. I looked at the Lord’s prayer and it is directed at an immature mind. Understand that your friends mind is immature.

Our Father in heaven,
Reveal who you are.
Set the world right;
Do what’s best— as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You’re in charge!
You can do anything you want!
You’re ablaze in beauty!
Yes. Yes. Yes.

I teach my daughter that Alleluiah is “yippee” and she tells her friends and they tell other friends that Yippee is Alleluiah and when my daughter hears that in Church everyone is just saying Yippee…

Now with that in mind as you spend some time with your friend I would compare and contrast passages that are different…if you can connect with him on his level that is the only way to reach your friend and be a friend otherwise you will create an adversial relationship…help your friend mature.:slight_smile:

This is kind of offensive to me as an Evangelical. :mad:

Is he new in his faith?
I read the prayer posted above and see what you mean…

Do you have any common friends who are Protestant , but do not attend mega churches?

The problem with the Message is that it shouldn’t be read as a substitute to other Bible versions but rather in conjunction with other Bible versions. It essentially is a paraphrase, and it is meant to help clarify certain passage that might seem obscure.

Personally I’m a stickler for the King James’ Version and the Conferenza Episcopale Italiana. :smiley:

It sounds like the crib notes books people read in school when they didn’t read the assigned book on time. :shrug:

Is it a pamphlet?

Unfortunately no, these types of paraphrase bibles exist and are promoted even by Catholics. My sister as a teen went to a “tec” retreat (Teens encountering Christ) and came home with a “Good News Bible.” We all had a good laugh while reading passages out of this “Bible.” Reading things like “One day, the devil was very angry” just tend to lend themselves to laughter rather than thoughtful meditation on God’s word.

OP, I like the suggestion of giving him a bible as a gift. Something non confrontational, find out which translation the pastor of his mega church uses, or something common like the KJV or NIV.

Thank you all so much for you help. Some very good advice. My friend is visiting UK in May so I will talk to him about his faith and other Bible versions.


I like the Bible-as-a-gift idea. You could even give him an ESV with Apocrypha, or NSRV with Apocrypha.


There is a Bible you can purchase that has three or four different versions in it allowing people to better understand scripture. I believe it has the KJV. NIV, and Good News translations. It is a wonderful tool for those who want or need something easier to read, but allows them to compare and understand to traditional scripture.

Good luck!

I’m sorry that “Lord’s prayer” was AWFUL! :bigyikes:

I guess that’s why my husband refers to it as “The Massage” instead of the Message.

It’s painful to some and feels “good” to others…

The purpose of the Good News Bible was to offer a translation that reflected the Koine Greek…the wording used among the common people in NT times. Koine Greek was not classical or lofty Greek…it was “vulgar” in many ways…the “Vulgate” translated into Latin is similar…“vugate/vulgar/common”.

TGNB was supposed to be simple in it’s wording and only use a certain amout of English words to remain simple.

Actually I would say exactly the opposite. I would never recommend the Message as the first version of the Bible people read. It’s a paraphrase, and works well if you think of it as a kind of commentary. Many people who are well acquainted with the Bible love the Message.

What exactly is wrong with the Message’s version of the Lord’s Prayer, bearing in mind that this is a paraphrase to help you understand the text and not a straight translation?

I can see why a Catholic might object to the non-Eucharistic interpretation of “artos epiousios,” though it’s hardly unique to Peterson, and I would tend to agree that “three square meals” is probably the basic meaning, with a Eucharistic “deeper meaning” also possible.



There is a difference in recommending what you believe someone should read and what someone has found to read as reasonable.

I would recommend a reading list provided by you to my daughter, however she is 12 years old, and probably would do better working up to it.:slight_smile:

I would probably do better to discover where she is at in her understanding and engage her with things she can read at her level.:slight_smile:

Wonderful Idea…


We do not really have any common Christian friends.He was quite dismissive of my choice to become a Catholic. He was happy when I was confirmed but I know he has issues with Catholicism. I just want him to see the beauty of the faith, but I have issues his take on Christianity. His social life revolves around the Mega Church and I feel that the his Church is centred on the Pastor rather than Christ!

Chicken :slight_smile:

Thanks … :slight_smile:

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