“¡Viva el Papa! ¡Viva el Papa! ¡Viva el Papa! ¡Viva el Papa!”
I tuned in yesterday afternoon in time to hear multitudes of Catholics from all over the world chanting in expectation of their new leader. Flags were waving all over the Vatican. The cry of the crowd was a cry of enthusiasm, expectation and energy as the new pope was to be revealed.
Then, as the curtains were pulled back, it was announced that the pope was none other than Argentine Jorge Bergoglio, who chose the name Pope Francis. Indeed, this man is the first Latin American to ever be chosen as Catholicism’s Papal leader.
He is a simple man, choosing to be as much among the people as possible, live a simple life, help the poor and deny many of life’s dainties for the “greater good.”
He led the people in reciting the Lord’s Prayer, then a prayer to Mary.
You could see expressions of hope on the faces of all who listened.
…But is there hope in the pope?
I need to be careful here, because my intention is not to carelessly offend those that hold to the catholic teachings. But could I be so bold as to say, Catholicism, at its core teaching, is leading over a billion people to hell.
Why is that?
Don’t Catholics believe in God? Don’t they believe in the Bible? Don’t they believe that Jesus died on the cross?
Yes, they believe all of these truths.
But what is different between biblical Christianity and catholic teaching? Simply put, it’s a matter of do vs. done.
The Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church states: “Christian initiation is accomplished by means of the sacraments which establish the foundations of Christian life. The faithful born anew by Baptism are strengthened by Confirmation and are then nourished by the Eucharist.”
Their teachings go on to express that there are 7 sacraments of the church, and in keeping these sacraments you will have favor with God and earn salvation.
But ask any catholic if they know where they will spend eternity and they always reply, “I don’t know” or “you can’t know” or “I won’t know until after I die.”
Why is that? Because salvation is depending on what they do. They are initiated into the church as a baby when they are baptized, they go through confirmation as a child or young adult, and they take the communion. They confess their sins to the priest, pray to Mary, pray to the saints and other idols, and help the poor, but it comes down to one question: What is their salvation depending on? DO or DONE!?
Friend, there is no hope in the pope. He is just a man. He may be a nice man, but he is a man who is leading people down a religious road straight to an eternity that is separated from God.
Salvation is only by grace through faith. It is either grace or it is works. It cannot be both. Jesus already bought our salvation, and offers it as a gift to all who will believe on him. Why are you trying so hard to earn it?
If you have never been biblically saved, if you are still trying to work your way to God, if you don’t know for sure if you’re eternity will be Heaven or Hell, I challenge you to do one thing. Repent.
Repent of your sin and your faith in works or religion. Then believe on Jesus. Run to Jesus. Throw out any other hope that you have and cling to the cross where Jesus paid for your sins. He says he will forgive you. He will accept you. He will make you his child and an heir to all promises. He promises to give you life. Don’t wait any longer.
The Bible says in John 5:24 “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.”
You have God’s word on it. He never breaks his promises. Don’t wait any longer. Believe on Jesus.
Christian, maybe you agree with all that I’ve written here. Would you pray with me for the billions around the world that are deceived by religion? Would you pray with me that God would raise up more laborers to take the GOOD NEWS to them, that Jesus paid it all? Would you pray that God would open their eyes, that they would know the truth, and this truth would make them free?
I strongly believe that Latin America is one of the ripest areas in the world for church planting. The countries are open. The people are receptive. The Gospel is starting to take root. I believe we are on the verge of seeing a massive revival!
If you get a few minutes, I want you to check out this a brand new website chock full of resources for church planting in Latin America. It’s called The Latin Bridge. You see, in order to see this revival come to pass in our generation, we need more laborers and we need to get the right tools in those laborers’ hands.
If you or somebody you know are interested in becoming a church planter, or if you’re a layman or pastor that wants to have a part in seeing people reached with the Gospel we’d like to be a bridge. Check out the website here!
Colombia Survey Trip Details
Aaron & Aubrie Vance | February 2011
∙ Bogotá (July 2009 metro population–8,500,000)
∙ Bucaramanga (July 2009 population–1,300,000)
∙ Medellín (June 2009 metro population–3,500,000)
∙ To obtain a larger burden for and understanding of the Colombian people and culture
∙ To gain more of an grasp of God’s Will for us in Colombia, specifically, the when and where
∙ To evaluate possible cities in which God would have us to work
∙ To plan general financial budgets, both personal and ministerial
∙ To assess specific needs and goals for long-term mission work
∙ To look upon the harvest, and to allow our eye to affect our heart
∙ To get footage, pictures and materials to assist with deputation
Information To Obtain:
Cost Of Living:
∙ Rent/Housing Costs per region/estrata
∙ Average Utility Costs per estrata
∙ Available Transportation and Costs–Buses, Taxis, Train, Purchase a Car, etc.
∙ Cost Of Food–Market, Grocery, etc.
∙ Availability and costs of Appliances and Furniture
∙ Residency/Visa Costs, Taxes
∙ Rent/Purchase of a Building & Property Costs per Region
∙ Legal parameters of starting a church–license, zoning, permission, etc.
∙ Evaluate need and reception of the Gospel per Region (locate other missionaries/churches)
∙ See what is already being done for God’s kingdom and the opposition that exists
∙ Meet experienced pastors and missionaries and learn from them
Missionaries For Possible Contact:
∙ Michael Hart (firstname.lastname@example.org)
∙ William Aya (email@example.com)
∙ Ruday Garrido (rgarrido.com)
∙ Johnny Bolin (firstname.lastname@example.org)
∙ Craig Lingo (email@example.com)
∙ Freddy Nieto (firstname.lastname@example.org)
∙ Rick Washburn (email@example.com)
∙ Jerard (firstname.lastname@example.org)
∙ Paul Clark (email@example.com)
∙ José Morales (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Expense Summary For Our Trip
Flight from US to Colombia $1000
Flights Between Cities $300
Buses Between Cities $100