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Age of Accountability

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by mojoala, May 12, 2006.

  1. Brother Bob

    Brother Bob New Member

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    We were conceived in sin but who's sin?
    Also, we are born with a sinful nature but inwardly is not sin for how could it be accountable. I suspect you are among those who believe infants in hell, are you? Apostle didn't die until the Law entered.
     
  2. Dale-c

    Dale-c Active Member

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    I want to believe that they are in heaven but I have a hard time proving it.
    But I do know one thing, if they are in heaven, it is because of God's grace alone just like everyone else.

    For ALL have sinned and come short of the Glory of God.

    Is there an age limit to that?

    Arminians love to say all means all except when it doesn't fit.
    I don't know if you are an arminian or not so don't take that personally if it doesn't apply to you, just saying it for consideration.
     
  3. Dale-c

    Dale-c Active Member

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    Ok, to put my answer another way, to say that there are no infants in hell you have to either say that they are not sinners deserving of hell (innocent) or that God covers them with His blood.

    Could God cover an infant with His blood? Sure He could. Does he? I don't know the answer to that. I wish I did but sometimes my emotion get's in the way.
     
  4. Brandon C. Jones

    Brandon C. Jones New Member

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    Dale, I admit that I didn't read this thread from the start so forgive me if this is old news. Let me recommend Millard Erickson's "Christian Theology" for you on this subject. He answers some good questions on this issue when dealing with the topic of original sin and the key passage in Romans 5.

    In a nutshell he argues that the parallel between Adam and Christ must be maintained. Thus, we are held accountable for Adam's sin (imputed to us) once we "verify" our relation to his sin by sinning ourselves. Likewise Christ's righteousness is imputed to us once we have faith in Him. Obviously, this is all in the vast realm of theology called conjecture. However, I think it is a consistent treatment: people are judged according to their own works. Until one is guilty of her own sin, then she is not yet held spiritually accountable for Adam's sin (such a person would still have a body subject to death and decay and live in a fallen world nonetheless). The basis for this person's "salvation" would still be grace, but faith would not enter into the picture for these little ones or mentally-handicapped people who never have the capacity for faith.


    Perhaps that will help, Erickson's book is a good one if you don't have it.
    BJ
     
  5. Brother Bob

    Brother Bob New Member

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    Amen Brandon;
    I will add one thing and that is we cannot escape the penalty of Adam's sin and that is the natural death of which infants and babies pay also. After that the baby had not had the second death imputed to it because it has not sinned itself. When Adam sinned it only passed down to the natural part and not the soul. For the soul to be dead someone has to sin themselves and a baby cannot sin even though it has a sinful body for it takes understanding to sin. I find when Jesus preached and taught it was alway to adults so when he said "all have sinned and come short of the Glory of God", He was talking to adults. I never have read where Jesus had Sunday school for childen or even preached or taught them it was alway those of us who have grown to know to do good and do it not.

    Always, when He talks of the tree being cut down it is a tree and not a the bushes.
     
  6. whatever

    whatever New Member

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    My problem with this theory is that Paul doesn't say it this way. Paul quite clearly says that "by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners". Who is the one man by whom you and I became a sinner? It has to be Adam, right? So we were sinners before we ever committed a sin.

    Paul also says that death reigned over those who did not sin as Adam did. Lots of people here want to make a distinction between "death reigning" and "condemnation", and yet Paul never says or even implies that there are some whom death reigns over but who are not condemned. It is always "all" who are in Adam who are condemned and whom death reigns over, contrasted with "all" who are in Christ who have now received reconciliation.

    Paul is paralleling what Adam did and what it means for us vs. what Christ did and what it means for us. His primary concern is not how we become "in Adam" compared to how we become "in Christ", but it is clear that we are born naturally "in Adam" and we are reborn "in Christ". All who are born physically are already "in Adam", that is, already a sinner.
     
    #66 whatever, Jun 24, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 24, 2006
  7. Brandon C. Jones

    Brandon C. Jones New Member

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    whatever, I would to refer you to Erickson's own words, but his bone of contention is that the parallel is destroyed when people are "unconsciously" in Adam but not "unconsciously" in Christ (i.e., universal salvation). Rahner got beat up for his notion of the "anonymous Christian" but it seems the "anonymous sinner" is okay for many.

    You are right, we are sinners before we commit a sin...but are we judged for our sin nature from Adam, or for our own sins, or for both--and is the punishment the same for both? That's the rub. I believe that a person who never consciously chooses to sin because of age or mental capacity has Adam's sin nature and the condemnation thereof, but God graciously saves them from the spiritual condemnation for Adam's sin because they never "ratified" their part in his sin by choosing to sin themselves.

    Like I said before this is all conjecture. Maybe some are elect and some are not. Maybe without faith it is impossible to please God and all are condemned without faith irregardless of their capacity to do so. Maybe you get a second chance after you die and are in a full-grown state like some have proposed. However, I'm willing to agree with Erickson because it seems to be consistent with God's repeated decrees in Scripture where every person is judged for her works and offers a little less conjecture than the positions above.

    I'll let Erickson defend himself in his own work for the rest of the issues here.
    BJ
     
    #67 Brandon C. Jones, Jun 24, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 24, 2006
  8. Dale-c

    Dale-c Active Member

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    A parallel is worthless if you can't back it up from scripture.

    If this is true, then God is unjust to allow them to die!
    If they have not sinned, then they should not die.

    Umm..that is what the Bible says:

     
  9. Brandon C. Jones

    Brandon C. Jones New Member

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    Dale, my apologies for misunderstanding your intentions in this thread. See you later.
     
  10. faithgirl46

    faithgirl46 Active Member
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    Does this mean that a person aged 25, but with the IQ of an 18 month old is accountable when they say or do something wrong?
    Faithgirl
     
  11. Dale-c

    Dale-c Active Member

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    Yes, I would have to say that is true.
    Can you show any evidence to the contrary?
     
  12. Dale-c

    Dale-c Active Member

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    No problem.
     
  13. faithgirl46

    faithgirl46 Active Member
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    Dale, I canot show you that. However does an 18 month old have the ability to know that sounding like his big brothrs who swears like a seven year sailor is wrong. They do not know what is right or wrong the way a ten year old would.
    Faiithgirl
     
  14. faithgirl46

    faithgirl46 Active Member
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    Dale, I lso believe that as adults, whether we are parents, aunts, uncles, or what have you, we are to go by what James said in James 3:1 Let not many of ye become teachers; knowing that we too shall recieve a stricter judgment. My point being it that when we teach kids who are too young to understand that saying an offensive word or degrading somebody is wrong, then we will be held accountable to God on Judgnment Day. when the child understands saying or doing something is wrong, then he or she will be held accountable.
    Faithgirl
     
    #74 faithgirl46, Jun 25, 2006
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  15. Dale-c

    Dale-c Active Member

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    Most people miss the point that our hearts being in rebellion and in a lack of submission to God is a sin and that is the way we are born.
    It is hard on our emotions to think of a cute little baby as a sinner but that is exactly what they are.

    Faithgirl, I know it is hard for you to accept this truth because it goes against our very nature. We think that little infants are innocent and do not sin but they do.

    I have a baby on the way, due in two months and it is hard for me to think of that baby as a sinner but that is just what it is.

    Pretending that it is not will do the baby no good at all.

    I have seen many people contend that no one sins until they know that their actions are sin.
    If that were true, then we should shut up and not preach to anyone because then they will go to hell for knowing but not heeding.

    Do pagans in Africa go to heaven because they never heard?

    I am not sure what you meant here.
    Could you clarify?
     
  16. Brother Bob

    Brother Bob New Member

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    Dale-c;
    That is not what Jesus said. You can speak different if you want but He said "such is the Kingdom of Heaven" not going to be but already are. If only you and I were as good as that little baby. I don't claim to be and know you are not.
     
  17. canadyjd

    canadyjd Well-Known Member

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    Sorry Bbob, but Jesus was speaking of their childlike faith, not their childlike innocence.

    peace to you:praise:
     
  18. Brother Bob

    Brother Bob New Member

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    No, He wasn't either. How do you know that? What does it matter He was saying they were not lost.
     
  19. canadyjd

    canadyjd Well-Known Member

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    Mark 10:14-15 "Permit the children to come to Me; do not hinder them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it."

    He was teaching the disciples a lesson about childlike faith, not the "age of accountability".

    peace to you:praise:
     
  20. faithgirl46

    faithgirl46 Active Member
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    '

    Sure I'll try. Take a word that you know is offensive. Does an 18 month old realize how offensive it is like you or I would?? If our uncle sounds like the town bigot, an eightteen month old says one of those words, they hear around him, do they realize how that word grives others, is offensive, the way you or I do? I don't believe that they do. we have to tech them that dirty words or racisim is offensive not only to God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, but to other people as well.
    Faithgirl
     
    #80 faithgirl46, Jun 25, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 25, 2006
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