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Going to Heaven if you never heard the Gospel

#1DarkContractorPosted 3/20/2013 6:06:28 PM
It seems the general consensus amongst Christians is that they trust God to handle these scenarios in which someone has not heard the Good News.

That is all fine and dandy. If you make that decision, that is your choice. But it also seems frequent nowadays that we assume the qualities of what an benevolent God would do in such a situation. (ie you won't be condemned for what you don't know/you automatically go to Heaven). That is Scripturally incorrect. I'm not going to debate on the morality of it, I feel like the skeptics and believers on this board have come to an impasse on this issue (if someone else wants to, by all means. I just won't be a part of that particular discussion). I just want to make sure every Christian realizes what it is they are believing is righteous.

The fact of the matter is that if you are not a born again Christian in this lifetime you are going to Hell, according to Christian theology. I will be building this position completely from Scripture, in NLT because that is the Bible closest to me.

Romans 2:14-16 "Even Gentiles, who do not have God's written law, show that they know his law when they instinctively obey it, even without having heard it. They demonstrate God's law is written in their hearts, for their own conscience and thoughts either accuse them or tell them they are doing right. And this is the message I proclaim-that the day is coming when God, through Christ Jesus, will judge everyone's secret life."

Here, Paul is saying that we instinctively know what is and is not a sin (I do not get how this ties into Roman 14, but eh, that's the Bible for you). There is no excuse as far as "I didn't know that was a sin" goes. According to the Bible, the Biblical morality is 'programmed' into us.

Romans 1:18-22 "But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness. They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities-his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God. Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn't worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools."

Rom. 2:24, 28 "So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other's bodies. (28) Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done."

Breaking it down, Paul contends that the notion of Yahweh being the one true God is obvious, it is intrinsic in nature. Pride, being the Biblical root of sin, is what separates us from God (which crosschecks with the Biblical definition of sin. Also, the end bit of verse 20 "wouldn't worship him as God or even give him thanks." definitely sounds like a pride issue. Paul here is contending that the only reason people do not worship, basically, is because of their pride; it matters not their education on the subject, it's already obvious by looking at nature, and the knowledge of what is and is not a sin is already inscribed their 'soul stuff'.
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An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. PSN: MrPillow92 Steam: MrPillowtheGreat
#2DarkContractor(Topic Creator)Posted 3/20/2013 6:08:36 PM
In Romans 3 Paul talks about being faithful, and argues against people who claim that our sins can glorify God, more or less. Romans 3:6 "Of course not! If God were not entirely fair, how wold he be qualified to judge the world?"

"I did not know" is no excuse as Paul already demonstrated. (I would also contend that if it is not pride that keeps you from Christianity, but it is in fact sincerely being unconvinced, you could consider yourself a gnostic atheist as far as Christianity goes. But I wouldn't bring it up in an argument, because that would be an argument from personal experience ;D ) God judges our sin, there is nothing that can get allow our sins to be pardoned except through mercy of Jesus Christ.

This is further examined in John 3, when Jesus is educating Nicodemus the Rabbi.

John 3:5 "Jesus replied, "i assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit."

John 3:17-21 "God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God's one and only Son. And the judgment is based on this fact: God's light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants"

I would argue that last sentence is doing the exact thing that Jesus conbdemned when he talking about Pharisees praying on the streets where everyone could see them, but that's beside the point. If you don't believe you are going to be judged for your actions. Biblically, the reason you are not serving Jesus is because you are too prideful to submit authority of your life to God and because you love 'the fleeting pleasures of this world' too much. It has zero to do with actually just not believing/not having heard of the message of the Gospel.

In fact, when questioned about people who hadn't heard it, Paul was basically "Well, go ****ing tell them about it."

Romans 10: 14-15 "But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, "How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!" I thought the Scriptures also said they can find out by looking at nature. 8D No biggie. Yo would think with actually working with the mighty Lord Jesus they would have a more effective to keep God from having to destroy his bride/children. But no, even Jesus himself said that one of the most important things to remember was to go make disciples of all nations. Seems like he's not thinking outside the box with all the ways he could save people. You would almost think Jesus and Paul were a part of some secular power play in an era full of false messiahs, but we know better because we see Yahweh's qualities in nature (does a volcano count as a quality in nature?).
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An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. PSN: MrPillow92 Steam: MrPillowtheGreat
#3DarkContractor(Topic Creator)Posted 3/20/2013 6:08:52 PM
And then we arrive to the rest of Romans 10.

17-18 "So faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ. But I ask, have the people of Israel actually heard the message? Yes, they have: "The message has gone hroughout the earth, and the worlds to all the world."

20-21 "And later Isaiah spoke boldly for God, saying, "I was found by people who were not looking fort me. I showed myself to those who were not asking for me." But regarding Israel, God said, "All day long I opened my arms to them, but they were disobedient and rebellious"

So I mean yeah that settles it. Those people who didn't receive the Gospel and never heard of Jesus, they actually know the Good News. So that settles it. I mean, they have.


So, just so we're all clear, if you do not make Jesus your Lord/Savior in this life you are going to Hell, whatever your theology of Hell may be, according to the Bible. If you feel that's benevolent, that's your prerogative. I'm just pointing that out.
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An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. PSN: MrPillow92 Steam: MrPillowtheGreat
#4Polish_CrusaderPosted 3/20/2013 7:08:45 PM
Dark Contractor, come back to the fold. Come back to the good Shepard. We love you, DC. Be a good sheep. BAAaaaaaah!
#5LastManStandingPosted 3/20/2013 7:13:16 PM
If a person has no means to become a Christian, he/she will be judged at adhering to his/her current religion. God is just.
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Divine Mercy - God Loves you as a sinner.
Christ Said: Before the Day of Justice, I am sending the Day of Mercy. (Diary 1588) Day of Mercy was declared in 2000
#6mercurydudePosted 3/20/2013 7:16:07 PM
I think the mainstream consensus (which you do a good job of poking holes into) is one of those things that has popped up in modern times in an attempt to make Biblegod seem more humane. It's sort of like the claim that God doesn't send people to eternal punishment/death, people send themselves there. Well, people are free to believe that, but that's not what the Bible says at all.

I saw this little vignette from Annie Dillard that really demonstrates the problem with the mainstream belief about this:

Eskimo: "If I did not know about God and sin, would I go to hell?"
Priest: "No, not if you did not know."
Eskimo: "Then why did you tell me?"

It basically turns missionaries into the most sadistic people in the world, because they're potentially sentencing every person they preach at to eternal torment. If they only kept their mouths shut about Jesus, then that person would remain ignorant and there wouldn't even be any need to worry about the state of their salvation, because unless they were especially evil, they'd pretty much get in by default.
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"I am going to light a fire in Paradise and pour water on Hell, so that both veils completely vanish." - Rabia Al-'Adawiyya
#7DarkContractor(Topic Creator)Posted 3/20/2013 7:16:23 PM
From: Polish_Crusader | #004
Dark Contractor, come back to the fold. Come back to the good Shepard. We love you, DC. Be a good sheep. BAAaaaaaah!




Do you have evidence of this 'good Shepard'?

From: LastManStanding | #005
If a person has no means to become a Christian, he/she will be judged at adhering to his/her current religion. God is just.



That's what the heretical Catholic Church says, not what the Bible says.
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An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. PSN: MrPillow92 Steam: MrPillowtheGreat
#8Lord_IchmaelPosted 3/20/2013 7:19:35 PM(edited)
LastManStanding posted...
If a person has no means to become a Christian, he/she will be judged at adhering to his/her current religion. God is just.


And if their current religion is something demonic or advocates mass murder/etc.? If they're good at it, they go to Heaven, and if they're bad at it, they go to Hell? :P

The fate of people who haven't heard of Christianity is one of the things that made me get doubts about Christianity. I don't care what rationalization they can come up with, the fact that they exist- or ever did exist- is a major plothole in the Bible, imo.
#9DarkContractor(Topic Creator)Posted 3/20/2013 7:19:46 PM
From: mercurydude | #006
I think the mainstream consensus (which you do a good job of poking holes into) is one of those things that has popped up in modern times in an attempt to make Biblegod seem more humane. It's sort of like the claim that God doesn't send people to eternal punishment/death, people send themselves there. Well, people are free to believe that, but that's not what the Bible says at all.

I saw this little vignette from Annie Dillard that really demonstrates the problem with the mainstream belief about this:

Eskimo: "If I did not know about God and sin, would I go to hell?"
Priest: "No, not if you did not know."
Eskimo: "Then why did you tell me?"

It basically turns missionaries into the most sadistic people in the world, because they're potentially sentencing every person they preach at to eternal torment. If they only kept their mouths shut about Jesus, then that person would remain ignorant and there wouldn't even be any need to worry about the state of their salvation, because unless they were especially evil, they'd pretty much get in by default.



psssh, don't be silly Jesus told them to, and anything Jesus says to do is a priori good!
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An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. PSN: MrPillow92 Steam: MrPillowtheGreat
#10LastManStandingPosted 3/20/2013 7:21:19 PM(edited)
Lord_Ichmael posted...
LastManStanding posted...
If a person has no means to become a Christian, he/she will be judged at adhering to his/her current religion. God is just.


And if their current religion is something demonic or advocates mass murder/etc.? If they're good at it, they go to Heaven, and if they're bad at it, they go to Hell? :P

The fate of people who haven't heard of Christianity is one of the things that made me get doubts about Christianity. I don't care what rationalization they can come up, the fact that they exist- or ever did exist- is a major plothole in the Bible, imo.


This explanation came under Holy Spirit. If a person has no means to Christ it is his/her religion that is it. There is morality also, I would have to ask about that. Good point you make.
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Divine Mercy - God Loves you as a sinner.
Christ Said: Before the Day of Justice, I am sending the Day of Mercy. (Diary 1588) Day of Mercy was declared in 2000