We have been called by God to the ministry of sharing the good news that God forgives sin, and asking people if they are interested.
The Gospel is not that God wants you to have a happy life, feel better, get your marriage straightened out, or your life headed the right direction.
The Gospel is that God will not overlook any of your sins, and He will not let anyone into Heaven that is not reconciled with Him. We don’t reconcile to God, He reconciles with us.
God left us here to tell people that there's a way in which all their sins can be forgiven forever.
GOD FORGIVES SIN!
When we witness, or share the Gospel we go around and tell people, “God will forgive all your sins. Are you interested?"
Heaven is a place of perfect holiness, and Hebrews 12:23 says that only the PERFECT go to Heaven.
• Religion is the way of human achievement. It gives a way for people to perfect themselves by doing good works. All of the world’s religions have one thing in common: they are all human achievement based.
• Revelation (or God’s Word) is the way of Divine Accomplishment. It offers free and unmerited justification by the once-and-for–all time death of a perfect substitute. By simply falling humbly before God, repentantly confessing my sinfulness and helplessness to ever save my self, I can have the free gift of everlasting forgiveness and life. Only the Bible presents the way of salvation, religions never can.
So all of us have a dilemma, we have all sinned (Romans 3:23). We all are thus infected with what I like to call:
THE S-I-N VIRUS
The Bible makes it clear that all people are sinners by nature and by action.
The most deadly virus is not the HIV Virus; it's the SIN virus. The HIV Virus kills everyone it affects; so does the SIN virus.
There is no cure however for the HIV Virus; but there is a cure for the SIN virus. And God Himself has provided the cure.
Open your Bible to 2 Corinthians 5:19. How does God save us? By:
THE ACT OF
God who was in Christ, verse 19, reconciling the world to Himself, did it this way. Verse 19, by not counting their what? Trespasses against them. That's how he did it. So that's justification. He declared them righteous.
It doesn't say He doesn't know about them, He does. It doesn't say they aren't there, they are. "Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not take into account," Romans 4 says.
So, the only way that God can do this, His plan, is if He forgives you and never holds your sins against you. Fully forgiven and you're declared to be righteous the instant of salvation. That is the Good News.
Now, about going to Italy where 99% of all the people are Roman Catholic. Let me share:
A SHORT COURSE IN
Roman Catholic theology works like this: You want to be justified, made right with God? Then you need "infused grace". God infuses it into you, it's righteousness and it's the grace of Christ and the righteousness of Christ and it's dumped into you. The infusion of grace takes place through the sacraments, and there are seven of them:
Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist/Mass, Penance,
Holy Orders, Marriage, Extreme Unction.