Old enough ....?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by ktn4eg, Mar 30, 2007.

  1. ktn4eg

    ktn4eg
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    I once heard a preacher make this statement:

    "Any child who is old enough to sin willfully is old enough to believe savingly!"

    Is such a statement true?

    I can't recall any scripture passages that would necessarily support that position, but then I can't recall any scriptures that would teach against it either.

    Any comments about this from my BB friends?
     
  2. TaterTot

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    I disagree. From watching my own children, they could willfully disobey as they were learning the parameters of their world around 1 year of age. Theres no way they could understand their sinfulness at that point.
     
  3. ktn4eg

    ktn4eg
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    Tater--

    Good point!

    What you posted, however, brings up another question for which I have no definite answer:

    Is there a difference between a very small/young child merely disobeying his/her parents and that child committing a willful sin?
     
  4. TaterTot

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    i dont think there is adifference in that, they are all wrapped up in the sin nature we inherit at birth. The difference, I think, is the cognitive ability to recognize our need for a holy God.
     
  5. bapmom

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    I agree with Tater as well. Moms know!

    The only thing Id add is I think they can willfully disobey even younger than a year old. Ive usually seen signs of willfulness closer to 6 to 8 months.....and I seriously doubt they could believe savingly at that age. :thumbs:

    I would guess that the preacher that said that has not had alot of experience around very little children. Just a guess......
     
  6. webdog

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    Absolutely! I'll disagree with the ladies on this one. If a child knowingly disobeys a parent, they don't necessarily know that it is also a sin against God leading to separation, they think it's only against mom or dad. Romans 5:13.

    As to the op...
    "Any child who is old enough to sin willfully is old enough to believe savingly!"
    Willful sin means knowledge of going against God's law and statutes, what the Bible defines as sin. If a child knowingly does this, they have the mental capability to understand the consequences of this sin, therefore, they also can knowingly comprehend what God has done to make atonement for that sin. This is the age of accountability.
     
    #6 webdog, Mar 30, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 30, 2007
  7. DHK

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    It's easy to understand the concept of sin: "That's wrong!"

    It is far more difficult to understand the concepts involved in salvation (though a simple message): who Christ is, why he died, the consequence of your sin, the resurrection, etc.
     
  8. webdog

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    I don't think it is easy for a child to understand the concept of sin, as it's more than "that's wrong".

    Sin is defined most basically in 1 John 3:4 "whoever committs sin transgresses the law (God's law, not mom and dad's): for sin is the transgression of the law. God defines that boundary He sets between Himself and mankind...sin is the transgression of His holy, spiritual law (Romans 7:12-14).
    If the concept of salvation is difficult, the concept of sin goes hand in hand. One can't be easy while the other is hard.
     
  9. bapmom

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    webdog?

    how are you disagreeing with us? I thought we said the same thing you did........
     
  10. webdog

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    Since I agree with the op, and TT disagreed with that, and you agreed with her, I disagreed with you both :)
     
  11. ktn4eg

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    Webdog --

    How about this:

    Is there wisdom in a parent correcting a child who has willfully disobeyed his parent(s) by going beyond merely telling that child that his/her disobedience is more than simply disobeying Mommy or Daddy; in fact, when you [the child] willfully disobey us, you're really willfully disobeying God? (And then going on to explain what the consequences of willfully disobeying God might involve.)

    Granted, such a conversation might not prove useful to a 1 YO child, but suppose the child is about 3 - 6 or so YO. Wouldn't such a practice be considered an integral part of rearing a child in "the nurture and admonition of the Lord" (Eph. 6:4)?
     
  12. DHK

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    For a child a father's law is God's law. God has made him the head of the household and given him that responsibility. Marriage is a God-ordained institution. Children honor your parents, as in the Lord.
     
  13. webdog

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    I don't disagree. Try telling that to a 2 year old, though :)

    If they can't understand the plan of salvation which is the solution to what they need saving from, they can't understand the concept of transgression against a Holy God.
     
  14. TaterTot

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    Isnt that what I was saying? :confused:
     
  15. bapmom

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    absolutely this should happen. This is how one of my children was eventually saved.......she disobeyed and we had been talking to her about how disobedience is really sinning against God.
     
  16. webdog

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    I don't know, now I'm really confused. To the quote in the op you said...
    I agree with the quote in the op...
    :confused:
     
  17. TaterTot

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    OK quote in question:


    TT says that her kids willfully chose to disobey at least by the time they were 1, but they did not understand their need for a holy God to save them from their state. They still are not at that point yet at 4 and 6, although I think they are mighty close.

    WD says "I don't think it is easy for a child to understand the concept of sin, as it's more than "that's wrong".

    So I dont see what you agree with about the opening quote I guess.
     
  18. webdog

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    If sin is a willful transgression against God, one understands the implications. With that same understanding, one can also have the mental capability to have faith in Christ. If you can do one, you automatically can do the other, what the quote in the op is implying.
     
  19. bapmom

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    web,

    all we're referring to is the idea that little children (babies even) can use their will to disobey.....they can choose to have a temper tantrum or to insist on their own way. But that is not the same thing as realizing it is a transgression against God and willfully turning away from God. We know that distinction........
     
  20. DHK

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    Even the concept of "a willful transgression against God," is far easier to grasp, than the sacrificial atonement of Christ, which is the same as "sin" vs. "gospel."
     

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