QandA: Part Two!

Where is salvation for those who don’t hear the Word or who lived in pre-Christian times?

This is really a two part question– first, I will answer, “Where is salvation for those who don’t hear the message about Jesus?

God clearly reveals Himself to us– Romans 1:20,

“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 men are without excuse.”

The book of Romans goes on to explain that although God clearly reveal Himself to us, in our sinful nature, we reject and rebel against God, Romans 1:21-23,

“For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.”

Deuteronomy 4:29 explains that those who seek after God WILL find Him,

“But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart and with all your soul.”

So where does this leaves those that already call themselves Christians?

Instead of debating the fate of those who have never heard, we, as Christians, should be doing our best to make sure that they hear. We are called to spread the Gospel throughout the nations (Acts 1:8). The fact that we know people reject the knowledge of God revealed in nature must motivate us to proclaim the good news of salvation through Jesus Christ. Only through accepting the God’s grace through the Lord Jesus Christ can people be saved from their sins and rescued from an eternity apart from God in hell.

It is interesting that the first instruction Jesus gives to the disciples (Simon and Andrew),
Mark 1:17,

Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.”

And the LAST instruction Jesus gives after He is risen, Matthew 28:18,

“Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Ultimately, God is all powerful and all knowing. He see’s to it that ALL have the opportunity to receive Him or reject Him.

I will answer the next half of the question about salvation for those before Christ in my next post. Look out for it!


1 Response to “QandA: Part Two!”

  1. 1 Michael Griffith
    April 8, 2009 at 9:08 pm

    To me, this reeks of Calvinism and pre-determination. God provides for the opportunity and you are either damned or saved from that. Furthermore, this doesn’t answer my previous question about the name/object contention. For instance, if you were to travel back in time and meet Jesus, he would not recognize the name. Because your religion has a myth and certain stories, it does not necessarily preclude someone from living the life or worshiping God in ways not known nor understood by Christians.In Ibn Tufayl’s Hayy ibn Yachtzahn, a man lives alone and finds God in nature. When he meets another man for the first time, he happens to be a pious man, man comes to realize that Hayy’s worship is more direct and effective than his careful scholarship.To extrapolate, who is to say that the “Christian” God’s values are THAT different from a “Muslim” God’s? A Taoist God? There are several faiths that have attempted to look for universality across religions (Unitarian, Ba’hai). Is it THAT critical that piety be shown in such a limited way to find salvation?Do you disagree with this formulation? MUST everyone worship Jesus? Or “Yeshua,” as he would recognize it? Or are the values more important? If one MUST worship Jesus and abide by the Christian Bible (and don’t even get me into denominational issues) precisely for salvation, is this a just system?

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