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What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Fri Jun 10, 2016 9:38 am
by christianwarrior
“ What happens to those who have never heard the gospel? I find it difficult to believe that a so called a loving God would send people to hell just because they didn't hear about him.” ... ard-gospel This is a commonly asked question. The answer is of course God will not judge people based on what people never heard. He will judge people based on what has been revealed to them. However there is a massive problem, God and his moral law has been revealed to humanity but people have chosen to rebel. The wrath of God shall come against all unbelievers regardless of whether they heard the Gospel.

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.” Romans 1:18-19

“ For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.” Romans 1:20-21
Regardless of whether they have Scriptures or not, people have seen the mighty works of God. They can look at the stars at night and they can experience God’s beautiful creation through being in nature.

“For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)” Romans 2:14-15

The Moral Law has always existed and was in existence before Moses wrote the Torah. Cain was exiled by God for murdering Abel ,this was before the 10 Commandments were written down. Confucius, Hillel the Elder, the ancient Egyptians, the ancient Persians, and the ancient Indians (likely all cultures actually) knew the Golden Rule before Jesus stated it. God holds people responsible for the Moral Law that has been revealed to them. The Canaanites were held responsible for violating the Moral Law.

“What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.” Romans 3:9-12

The wages of sin is death for everyone regardless of whether or not, they knew Scriptures or not. However the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. This is why is important to tell people of this gift. “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?” Romans 10:13-14

*Side-note the way of salvation was the same in the Old Testament times as it was in the current age.
What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Romans 4:1-3
The ancient Hebrews had faith in God and his promise that through Abraham’s seed all the nations shall be blessed. (See Galatians 3) They looked forward to the future fulfillment God’s promise. We have faith in God and in his promise that was fulfilled through the seed which is Christ Jesus. Hebrews 11 is a great passage on faith.*

“ But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” Romans 5:8-10
The only way of salvation is through Jesus. ... 18#p169918 We should be making that way known. For if they do not know the way how will people receive salvation?

Another common question about people who haven’t heard the Gospel: Would it just for God to judge people who would have been receptive to the Gospel but never heard the Gospel?
First it would be just because all of humanity deserves judgment. However this is a non-issue because Scriptures shows that God out of his love will make the Gospel known to all those who would be receptive. When there are people receptive of the Gospel but there are unreachable, God reaches to them.

“Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.” Matthew 2:1-2 Now the wise men were likely Magi of the Persian nation. They were Zoroastrian priests. They would give the king advice based on sorcery and astrology. They would practice fortune telling based on constellation position.

They were likely familiar with writings of the prophets especially of the book of Daniel because of the Persian take over of Babylon. They likely heard about Daniel being wise counselor to Darius and Cyrus. God sent a sign to the Magi in the stars to come to see baby Jesus. He sent a sign in the way that he knew they would be looking for. The angel of the Lord revealed to the shepherds that the Messiah was born. The Holy Spirit revealed the Messiah to Simeon the priest and Anna the prophetess of Asher (Luke 2).

Acts 8, Phillip and the Ethiopian eunuch:
“ And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert. And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship,Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet. Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.” Acts 8:26-29
The angel told Phillip to go towards the desert of Gaza and the Spirit told him to go to the chariot so he could explain the meaning of Isaiah 53.

Peter and the Roman Centurion:
There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band,A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway. He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius. And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God. And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: (Acts 10:1-5)
The next day, while they were on their way and nearing the city, Peter went up to the roof terrace to pray at about noontime. He was hungry and wished to eat, and while they were making preparations he fell into a trance. He saw heaven opened and something resembling a large sheet coming down, lowered to the ground by its four corners. In it were all the earth’s four-legged animals and reptiles and the birds of the sky. A voice said to him, “Get up, Peter. Slaughter and eat.” But Peter said, “Certainly not, sir. For never have I eaten anything profane and unclean.” The voice spoke to him again, a second time, “What God has made clean, you are not to call profane.” This happened three times, and then the object was taken up into the sky. While Peter was in doubt about the meaning of the vision he had seen, the men sent by Cornelius asked for Simon’s house and arrived at the entrance. (Acts 10:9-17)

God sent a vision to Cornelius to send men to find Simon Peter. The next day, God sent a vision to Peter about not calling profane and unclean what God has declared clean.
“They called out inquiring whether Simon, who is called Peter, was staying there. As Peter was pondering the vision, the Spirit said [to him], “There are three men here looking for you. So get up, go downstairs, and accompany them without hesitation, because I have sent them.” (Acts 10:18-20).
The Holy Spirit tells Peter to follow the men. Peter realizes that the vision signifies that the division between Jew and Gentile was abolished and through the Gospel, the people who once were not God’s people were now God’s people.

Paul and Macedonian Call:

Acts 16:9-10: “And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; There stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us. And after he had seen the vision, immediately we endeavoured to go into Macedonia, assuredly gathering that the Lord had called us for to preach the gospel unto them.” God knew that the people of Macedonia needed the Gospel and that they were receptive to the Gospel so he sent a vision to Paul.

Right now many Muslims including some former ISIS fighters are turning towards Jesus after seeing him in a vision. ... le-139880/ ... bers-pt-1/
I have two reasons for believing these stories: 1. Missionaries of several denominations are reporting this whether they are continuationists or cessationists. 2. Former Muslims are cast out of their families, abandoned by their friends, and often times killed. There is very little incentive to make up such a story.

Even in these supernatural cases, a missionary is there to interpret the dreams and explain the Gospel. So miracles of God do not give us an excuse to not preach the Gospel. We should be preaching the Gospel in and out of season regardless it is accompanied by signs and wonders or not. You do not need a vision to tell you to evangelize. Jesus has already given us the Commission. “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. ‘Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.’” Matthew 28:18-20

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Sun Jun 12, 2016 7:52 am
by melanie
I think that when people ask the question of what happens to those who never hear the gospel Christians tend to give in my opinion a stock standard answer. This is what we do, with the best intentions, I have done so myself.
We think about it in terms we can understand.... The case of the Muslim who had a dream, an epiphany or what have you. Or we could look at scripture like Sauls conversion and use this as a measure for everyone person in history. If God wanted you He would have showed up in your own personal Road to Damascus experience.
We have it all neatly packaged, parceled and delivered.
The thing is whilst Saul/Paul was having his experience and in that we can include the vast majority of biblical characters there were races of people all across the globe who had never had exposure to Christianity. The Australian Aboriginals remained that way up until a couple hundred years ago.
Isolated on an island with absolutely no means for the gospel to reach there. We are talking about countless generations who according to this train of thought ended up in the fiery pits of hell for eternity.
There is a reason this doesn't sit right with many people because it shouldn't.
We all have knowledge of God written in and on our hearts whether we come to that realization or not, that is what gives us a universal knowledge of right and wrong. I believe that is why many instinctively reject this line of thinking. I also believe that is why many who regret God because of this view of Him that we as Christians have put forward rightfully can not reconcile a God of love with such actions.
Too often I have heard... if that's how God is then I don't want any part of that.
Their instinctual understanding of what is right and fair and good cannot embrace these ideas. So in essence Christians halter and hamper their potential walk towards God.
I'm not saying that because I think the truth should be watered down or omitted because it may offend someone, I'm saying it because I believe that it is wrong.
The truth is I don't know what happened to all the people across history who haven't heard the gospel but I do know it was handled by a God who is fair beyond measure and perfect in His ways.
Nobody ever has been damned to Hell based purely on a geographical technicality, that I know for certain.
And no I don't believe for an iota that God deliberately placed Aboriginals on Australia for 40 thousand years with no way for the gospel to reach here deliberately because they would never have been susceptible to it in the first place. That amounts to countless souls being born into the world with complete knowledge that they would end up in Hell without a chance of avoiding it.
I am passionate about this because I believe we are doing God an injustice when we present Him this way.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:31 pm
by crochet1949
We need to remember that God IS a loving, sovereign God who so loved the world/all people/ that He gave His Only Son to die for us.
God Also calls people into missions -- going to various Other places to share the Gospel unto Salvation. My sister and her husband are one of hundreds of couples / families who've felt called to specific geographical areas to do exactly that. They've retired back to this country after 40 years in another country.
So - God doesn't leave anyone without a way to know Him Personally as Savior. The thing is, He knows who will accept and who will reject. We don't have that knowledge -- so Our job is to share with whomever crosses paths with us. No forcing Bible down anyone's throat, but as the Holy Spirit leads us individually -- we Need to be willing To share.
There are LOTS of people coming to This country for a variety of reasons -- do we see them as people needing Jesus Christ? We can try to help people learn English and in process share God's Word with them.
We can simply be good neighbors who help others in any way possible. They will see God's love in / through us and will enquire of us why's and wherefore's of -- and we'll probably get ridiculed for even Trying to share with whomever. But at least we're making that important effort to share God / Christ with them. Giving them a chance to accept or reject.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Sat Jun 18, 2016 8:17 pm
by Philip
NO jungle, NO remote place, NO obstacle prevents God from giving each what they will need to know and accept Jesus - EXCEPT those permanently resistant and determined to remain in unbelief in the true God. God already tells us that He wants all to come to saving knowledge of Christ. Certainly many remote are miraculously made aware of Christ - whether in dreams, at the cusp of death - God is not limited in ANY way as to how He might reach those whom will not resist His message and enlightenment. Those who desire to know WHO God is (as they don't yet know) are honored - whether miraculously, through missionaries or whatever method - there's all manner of stories of how people were reached with the Gospel. But make no mistake about it - and Scripture is quite clear - people CAN and DO reject God without ever knowing about Jesus. And if they reject the revelation of the true God - even if only aware via the General Revelation of the Creation, etc. (Romans tells us ALL people know of God's existence, His provision, His basic attributes but that most reject it), this means they have also rejected Jesus.

Many people were lost before Jesus ever stepped into this world - because they had ALREADY rejected what of God they already had been given/made aware of - that if not rejected, would have led to whatever knowledge they might have needed to have faith. The Gospel to come would, for most, have been just be a further thing for such people to reject. If they reject the Father, they have Rejected the Son and the Spirit. And so God foreknows all whom will benefit and not permanently resist Him, and those for whom NO amount of knowledge, whether of merely the OT or including all of the NT, would ever change their hearts. So, it's not that God has withheld from people open and desirous to know Him the Gospel, but that, for many, He will not cast His pearls before Swine, because He knows those whom will permanently resist Him - no matter what FURTHER enlightenment He could provide them.

With God, NOTHING is impossible for Him to overcome to reach a person, EXCEPT determined resistance that eventually hardens into permanent resistance. He will NOT force a person to accept Him. Else it would not be their choice, but His forcing something down their throats (God's love!) that they do not want. Forced love - now THAT's an oxymoron! So, while I have great faith in God's love of all people, I have no such faith in those who will only ever desire to resist Him. I trust God will send all what they need to know about Jesus, however He might do so.

And, lastly, we have not one example in Scripture of anyone, post the Resurrection, of either getting saved without 1) first hearing the Gospel message and 2) or without embracing it. Because if this were not critical to salvation - if people were okay just living good lives without ever hearing the Gospel - well, why send missionaries to witness to them? Why send them a message they might reject - especially if they are acceptable for Heaven just as they are? But ALL of the NT asserts hearing and then receiving the Gospel message, through faith in Christ, is the ONLY way ANYONE can be saved - which, again, is not to assert that God can't reach people in other ways or that He doesn't do so. If hearing and receiving the Gospel message isn't critical for salvation, then one heck of a lot of missionaries have spent the lives pointlessly sacrificing and suffering for the spread of the Gospel. Especially when one considers so many of them have been martyred. WHY, if hearing and then receiving the Gospel isn't crucial???!!! Scripture strongly refutes the idea that if most just had more information, if they had the Gospel, knowledge of Christ, that they would welcome Him into their hearts, through faith. But here we are in the Gospel-saturated West, Scripture and apologetics websites all over, and so look how few people desire to follow Christ. So, most people do NOT have a knowledge deficit - and God knows their REAL problems aren't a lack of information - it's a matter of their own hard hearts and minds.

Scripture asserts that people without the Gospel DO have a chance to know and place their faith in God with what of Himself He has already revealed to them. THAT is their chance to 1) not reject Him so that 2) He would further reveal Himself, and that the Father and Son are the same God. And so, people's ONLY chance is not just hearing the Gospel, it's what they reject of God that He's ALREADY shown them about Himself, His existence. Remember, when God shuffled people out across time, place and geography, that His plan included Who would be receptive to the Gospel and who would not. Anyone who thinks that one asserting the Gospel is critical for salvation also means that GOD has prevented people from being saved by where and when they were appointed to live - well, they just haven't studied Scripture enough.

I have four questions for those asserting what Mel seems to think is possible (that people can be saved without first hearing the Gospel):

1) WHY is there not one NT Scriptural indication that anyone can be saved without first hearing and embracing the Gospel?

2) Why does Scripture redundantly emphasize the exact opposite? From Jesus to Peter to Paul, etc. - there is ONE message. EVERYONE must know the Gospel and have faith in Jesus?

3) Why is the Great Commission deemed a critical, urgent mission in Scripture, IF not critical to salvation?

4) Does not Scripture teach that one need NOT know about and reject Jesus to nonetheless reject God in His full Trinitarian Deity?

You can't reject part of God - His Son or Spirit without also that equaling a rejection of God AS HE IS! So, either Scripture doesn't accurately convey what is necessary to salvation OR God is unfair and cruel beyond imagination! Because, as Mel asserts, if knowledge and embracing of Jesus is essential to salvation, then what God made essential (faith in Jesus/the Gospel) is a knowledge that He would have refused vast millions, per how He distributed their time and boundaries. But we KNOW God is not unfair AND that He wants all to embrace Him and His Son! These are both true and they are NOT contradictory. And our own society easily demonstrates that most people reject the best information available about Christ - more than the level of Scriptural information that anywhere else in the world has received. And yet people are people! Israel constantly rejected God, and then Jesus specifically. Now, most of the world can know about Jesus if they DESIRE to via the web - and yet, still so few seek Him out or desire to.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Sun Jun 19, 2016 3:00 pm
by Philip
Continuing what the Gospel asserts about the importance and necessity of first hearing and believing the Gospel of Christ, Romans 10 sets it up:

"... IF you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11 For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.”

God doesn't view people of different places or nationalities differently:

"12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of ALL, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. 13 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

OK, so the above establishes that ANYONE who calls on Jesus will be saved. But how does this happen?

Paul asks the obvious question:

"How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard?[c]

Note that Paul connects the ability to call upon Jesus to hearing about Him and believing what they are told (of the Gospel message).

Further, Paul connects the necessity to respond to the Gospel with first HEARING it, and that to those that are sent to PREACH it.

"14 And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”

Paul cements the connection between salvation and the necessity of hearing the Gospel message:

"17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ."

But the above doesn't mean that a person unaware of Christ can't also seek the Lord - even if they don't know WHO or WHAT Jesus is, or what He's done for all of mankind. In Acts 10, the Roman centurion Cornelius zealously sought to honor and know God, long and well BEFORE he ever heard the Gospel from Peter. And God rewarded His search and desire to know Him by sending His angel: "“Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God. 5 Now send men to Joppa to bring back a man named Simon who is called Peter." But, even so, Cornelius was not yet saved UNTIL AFTER God honored his seeking Him by telling him to send for Peter, through whom he HEARD and then BELIEVED the Gospel message Peter preached to him. So people CAN seek God without knowing about Jesus. And so God sent Peter to a man He knew would be receptive to His Gospel message! And surely God has miraculously hooked up many such people with the Gospel. message.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Mon Jun 20, 2016 4:36 am
by PaulSacramento
There are some universals such as:
There IS a right and a wrong ( note I did not state what IS right and wrong only that THERE IS A right and wrong).
There is such a thing as what is natural and doing what is best/ideal for that natural ( no matter how many people protest that it doesn't exist, it is evident that it does).

Those that have not heard and understood the Gospel by NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN, will be judged on their actions AND, perhaps more importantly, their INTENTIONS.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 7:05 pm
by crochet1949
God Does know our hearts -- and our actions come From our hearts.

Okay --' by no fault of their own ' - goes back to God knows our hearts.

Isn't there a saying that goes -- the path to hell is lined with 'good intentions'. Intending to '" do something'" but putting it off and never actually Doing it.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Sat Jun 25, 2016 11:06 am
by Philip
Crochet: Isn't there a saying that goes -- the path to hell is lined with 'good intentions'. Intending to '" do something'" but putting it off and never actually Doing it.
OR, never, ever desiring Christ, in fact, avoiding and resisting Him at all costs - often even running in the opposite direction.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 6:36 pm
by crochet1949
I've come across people like that -- it's kind of scary -- cause they Will 'run into Him' eventually and 'we' can / need to keep on sharing With them, what they Do need to hear.

On one of these threads, you were talking about the book by Norman Geisler , Conversational Evangelism -- I'd asked if it would be possible to do a small group discussion here on Forum.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 6:37 pm
by RickD
crochet1949 wrote:I've come across people like that -- it's kind of scary -- cause they Will 'run into Him' eventually and 'we' can / need to keep on sharing With them, what they Do need to hear.

On one of these threads, you were talking about the book by Norman Geisler , Conversational Evangelism -- I'd asked if it would be possible to do a small group discussion here on Forum.
Start a thread in the resources and reviews forum. :D

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 6:42 pm
by crochet1949
And where/ what is That?

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 2:29 am
by RickD
crochet1949 wrote:And where/ what is That?

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 9:27 am
by Kurieuo
If a person is bitten by a deadly snake out in some remote Amazon tribe, and an antidote exists in the Western world, is it unfair that they don't have access to the cure while others do? Or how about is it fair that an enslaved people have offspring who are born into slavary, yet some are rescued while others remain and perish?

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 9:34 am
by crochet1949
I DID discover that section -- but I'm not the one who's recommending that particular book to read. I brought up a possible group discussion not him. And I kind of doubt I'd have a 'following'. So - other than That. I'll refrain from starting a thread.

Re: What happens to people who never hear the Gospel....

Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 10:06 am
by crochet1949
Kurieuo wrote:If a person is bitten by a deadly snake out in some remote Amazon tribe, and an antidote exists in the Western world, is it unfair that they don't have access to the cure while others do? Or how about is it fair that an enslaved people have offspring who are born into slavary, yet some are rescued while others remain and perish?
Well -- how about the missionary or other person From the Western world who Is there to help those Amazon tribal people.
How about sharing the Gospel with the people While taking care of their physical problems. And I Don't mean withholding medical help until they are willing to listen. People Do die from snake bite even in This country. I was told that if a snake has venom in it's fangs -- depending on the area of the bite -- the person Can die shortly no matter.
Salvation is Not confined to the civilized / Western world. Anyone can share Anyplace -- even here on Forum. Because we don't know who else might be reading This and sharing with others.
The Children of Israel were in slavery for 400 years -- it didn't start Out that way. They originally went to Egypt because other areas were in famine. Egypt had grain. In fact Joseph was there and his brothers came to get food. It wasn't until After that generation died and a new ruler came into power that the slavery came into play. And, yes, children were born into that environment. And Moses was chosen by God to rescue them. And there Were other people who joined them. They weren't living in a vacuum.

During the Holocoste --people came to know the Lord -- people smuggled God's Word with them into some of the camps. One of the sections of one of the camps was so bad with flees that the guards stayed away -- That was where sections of Scripture were smuggled in and read and memorized. Even in the Darkest of times and places -- God's Word Still survives and people Do hear and Do accept. And some Don't accept.

The Gospel is shared / spread -- at times -- one by one. People make individual choices -- and gradually a Group comes into being.

So -- when a person feels God's leading to Go somewhere To share -- it's best To Go. Ya don't know what person is waiting in that Other place to hear what 'you' have to share with them. Or when a person comes From that other place to where You Are -- it's best to share with that person Right Where we Are.