[ee-van-jel-i-kuh l, ev-uh n-]
See more synonyms for evangelical on Thesaurus.com
  1. Also e·van·gel·ic. pertaining to or in keeping with the gospel and its teachings.
  2. belonging to or designating the Christian churches that emphasize the teachings and authority of the Scriptures, especially of the New Testament, in opposition to the institutional authority of the church itself, and that stress as paramount the tenet that salvation is achieved by personal conversion to faith in the atonement of Christ.
  3. designating Christians, especially of the late 1970s, eschewing the designation of fundamentalist but holding to a conservative interpretation of the Bible.
  4. pertaining to certain movements in the Protestant churches in the 18th and 19th centuries that stressed the importance of personal experience of guilt for sin, and of reconciliation to God through Christ.
  5. marked by ardent or zealous enthusiasm for a cause.
  1. an adherent of evangelical doctrines or a person who belongs to an evangelical church or party.

Origin of evangelical

1525–35; < Late Latin evangelicus (< Late Greek euangelikós; see evangel1, -ic) + -al1
Related formse·van·gel·i·cal·ly, adverbe·van·gel·i·cal·ness, e·van·gel·i·cal·i·ty, nounnon·e·van·gel·ic, adjectivenon·e·van·gel·i·cal, adjectivenon·e·van·gel·i·cal·ly, adverbpseu·do·e·van·gel·ic, adjectivepseu·do·e·van·gel·i·cal, adjectivepseu·do·e·van·gel·i·cal·ly, adverbsu·per·e·van·gel·i·cal, adjectivesu·per·e·van·gel·i·cal·ly, adverbun·e·van·gel·ic, adjectiveun·e·van·gel·i·cal, adjectiveun·e·van·gel·i·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for evangelical

Contemporary Examples of evangelical

Historical Examples of evangelical

British Dictionary definitions for evangelical


  1. of, based upon, or following from the Gospels
  2. denoting or relating to any of certain Protestant sects or parties, which emphasize the importance of personal conversion and faith in atonement through the death of Christ as a means of salvation
  3. another word for evangelistic
  1. an upholder of evangelical doctrines or a member of an evangelical sect or party, esp the Low-Church party of the Church of England
Derived Formsevangelicalism, nounevangelically, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for evangelical

1530s (adj. and noun), from evangelic (early 15c., from Old French evangelique, from Late Latin evangelicus; see evangelist) + -al (1). In reference to a tendency or school in Protestantism, from mid-18c. Related: Evangelicalism (1831).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

evangelical in Culture


A member of any of various Christian churches that believes in the sole authority of the literal Bible (see also Bible), a salvation (see also salvation) only through regeneration, or rebirth, and a spiritually transformed personal life.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.