I'd like us to look at the following verses and then I'll point out why my question and maybe someone knows some other verses that might give some more information I've missed that might help clarify this.
- Deuteronomy 1:39 And the little ones that you said would be taken captive, your children who do not yet know good from bad—they will enter the land. I will give it to them and they will take possession of it.
- James 4:17 If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.
- Matthew 19:14 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
- John 3:18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.
- John 14:6 “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, except through Me.”
- Acts 4:12 “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”
- Luke 18:26-27 Those who heard this asked, “Who then can be saved?” Jesus replied, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.”
- John 17:24 “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.
- John 10:29 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all[a]; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.
- Genesis 15:6 Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.
- Psalm 32:1 Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.
- Romans 4:7 “Blessed are those whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.
- Romans 1:18-20 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
- Romans 7:8-9 But sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, produced in me every kind of coveting. For apart from the law, sin was dead. Once I was alive apart from the law; but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died.
- John 15:22-25 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin; but now they have no excuse for their sin. Whoever hates me hates my Father as well. If I had not done among them the works no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. As it is, they have seen, and yet they have hated both me and my Father. But this is to fulfill what is written in their Law: ‘They hated me without reason.’
There's always the debate as to whether there is an age of accountability. And as much as I like the information I usually find at GotQuestions, I disagree with their assessment. They claim Scripture is clear and that we're sinners at birth and even newborns go to hell if they die at birth. No wonder some people believe God is cruel! The first 3 passages above actually provide the evidence of the age of accountability and I find they're perfectly clear on this.
Secondly, we know that numbers 4-6 above tell us how to be saved after reaching accountability by going through Christ.
Through #7, we know that only God chooses who He reveals Himself to. He is the only one who makes salvation possible. Jesus Himself bears this out in 8 & 9.
And prior to Christ, God also clearly counted some as righteous as He did Abram in #10.
So only God forgives our transgressions and doesn't hold us accountable until we know. Numbers 11 & 12 say sins can be forgiven. And we can believe in God because He reveals Himself through His creation as told in #13.
So now comes my question...
So now go back up and read numbers 14 & 15. You might already see by this what I'm getting to.
I've always believed what is taught, that no one gets to heaven unless they believe in Jesus and repent, but only if they're accountable. But in seeing all this, could it be possible that God still doesn't hold those who don't know accountable?
Bear with me here...
Unless there's something in Scripture I haven't seen yet, in every passage I've seen hell being referenced, it has to do with the wicked. Even Abraham pleaded with God for anyone who was righteous in Sodom. And we know God judges the heart.
So could it just possibly be that those who haven't heard of Christ yet still believe in a creator, who sin like all of us but aren't choosing to act wickedly, could they still fall under God's mercy and choosing by what's in their heart, and that He might count them as righteous?
Replies are closed for this discussion.
I was trying to say that everyone must hear the gospel to be saved whether by reading from the Word as did the Ethiopian eunuch, Acts 8:30, or by the preaching of a servant of the Christ. I have a way of saying things in a strange manner thinking everyone know what I mean.
I understand Romans 1:20 to mean that nature declares His glory. As does Psalm 97
1. The Lord reigns; let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of isles be glad thereof.
2. Clouds and darkness are round about him: righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne.
3. A fire goes before him, and burns up his enemies round about.
4. His lightnings enlightened the world: the earth saw, and trembled.
5. The hills melted like wax at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.
6. The heavens declare his righteousness, and all the people see his glory.
Since the works of the creator declare His glory then all men are without excuse when they don't seek Him and when they seek Him He will find them. He will prepare someone to give him the gospel.
This is what I believe. I don't expect everyone to share my beliefs but I hope it helps those who are not sure as to whether a person can be saved without receiving the gospel. Thank you.