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Can People of Other Faiths Be Saved?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Marcia, Sep 14, 2005.

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  1. Yes, adults of non-christian faiths who never hear about Christ can be saved and go to heaven. (Plea

    86.8%
  2. No, adults must hear/read the gospel and have faith in Christ to be saved.

    13.2%
  3. Unsure.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. HankD

    HankD Well-Known Member
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    I am surprised that no Primitive Baptist has participated in this thread or at least explained their position.

    Most (if not all) Primitive Baptists do not support the traditional missionary effort.

    One of their core beliefs is that God alone saves and He saves His children with or without them hearing the Gospel in this life.

    In fact there are even universalists under the Primitive umbrella called "no-hellers" a title they abhor but accept because they believe in hell but reject that it is an eternal state.

    To them hell is not punitive but remedial where the "lost" hear the gospel and are ultimately saved.

    So, in either case they would agree that Christ is the only way to salvation but disagree that those who receive His salvation need to receive it in this life.

    They would answer with a qualified "yes" to the question asked in this thread.

    Obviously thay have no Scripture to support their view, but I thought perhaps they should be represented here being Baptists.

    BTW, I am not PB, but a member of a GARBC associated Church.

    Perhaps a PB could respond?

    HankD
     
  2. Plain Old Bill

    Plain Old Bill New Member

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    Very intersting Hank. I am always amazed to find out what some Baptists believe.I guess everybody can call themselves a Baptist and believe almost anything.
     
  3. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    Pastor Larry,

    1. You should care that Zoroaster was a student of Daniel for it was in this way that the Magoi knew what to look for in the STARS, when they came to Herod and said "WE HAVE SEEN HIS STAR IN THE EAST..." It is one more evidence that people have always had the Gospel of Christ available to them.

    2. Paul makes a specific point in Galatians of saying that 'seed' was singular and not plural and specifically referring to Christ in Genesis 15, your claim not withstanding.

    3. We do know what God named the stars, or at least the meaning of the names, for those meanings are the same in every ancient language, and many modern ones. To say this happened by accident is on par with evolutionists saying the eye evolved about forty different times in separate types of organisms! It is ignoring evidence in favor of theory.

    4. You stated that God's glory is far more than Christ. The Bible disagrees with you: The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of His being. Heb. 1:3 "Radiance" is that which we can see. Any more glory is unseeable to us. Therefore, as far as we humans are concerned, all God's glory is in Christ. Using Bible to explain Bible, then, and in line with what Paul says in Romans 10, the fact that the heavens declare the glory of God means that there is something in the heavens which proclaims Christ to the world.

    5. I don't have to be a theologian to have full assurance about God not wanting one to perish. The Bible says so. It's His Word. I don't need a theologian for that.

    6. Abraham's faith, which was counted to him as righteousness, had to be faith IN something. Faith does not float alone in the air; it has an object. What was the object of Abraham's faith that was counted to him as righteousness? Read what Jeremiah has to say:
    "The days are coming," declares the Lord,
    "when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch,
    a King who wil reign wisely'and do what is just and right in the land.
    In his days Judah will be saved
    and Israel will live in safety.
    This is the name by which he will be called:
    The LORD Our Righteousness."

    23:6

    Did Jeremiah as well as Job, and even Noah, who WAS a Preacher of Righteousness (of Christ), know more than Abraham? I doubt it. Abraham believed God AFTER he looked at the stars, named them, and believed about the Seed (singular, according to Paul in Galatians), and it was credited to him as righteousness.

    One does not have to be a theologian to let Bible explain Bible.

    7. I have no reason to doubt the stories of so many missionaries when they all agree with each other. God left something of the word of His Promise in every culture, so that no man is without an opportunity to believe. This coincides exactly with what both Paul and Peter tell us in the Bible. That is further reason to believe the missionaries.

    8. The fact that God knew that He would end up hardening Pharaoh's heart in the long run does not negate what the Bible says about Pharaoh hardening his OWN heart first. God simply finished what Pharaoh had started and God told Moses ahead of time that this would be the result. This does not mean Pharaoh did not have a choice about all this. He was not a robot.

    9. About Judas, again, the fact that God KNEW what Judas would do does not mean that Judas never had a choice about it. Judas was free to choose what He would do about Christ, just as we all are. God knows what each of us will do, but that does not mean that He has not desired each of us to be saved and made provision for that. Again, it is just that most reject Him, not that He has not given them both opportunity and choice in the matter.

    10. Therefore the point of all this is to say that faith in a Redeemer, the fulfilled Promise of God, who IS Christ Jesus, has been available to all men from Adam on. Therefore those of another faith cannot be saved, but that faith has been available to all men from all times and places. The evidence is in the Bible and in history.
     
  4. buckster75

    buckster75 Member

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    Question for Marcia:

    Do you feel you have an answer? If so what is that answer. And do you feel the last several posts are contributing to the question you had at the beggining?
     
  5. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    HOw do you know that the Magoi found out this way? You don't. You have not yet established any relevance here whatsoever. It proves nothing about the gospel of Christ. It is, so far, pure suggestion on your part. BTW, there is no substantive difference between magi and magoi. Magoi is the Greek word transliterated. It means wise men, astrologers, magicians.

    Did you read? Paul makes a specific point about one aspect. He does not deny the truth of Gen 15.5, which is that Abraham's seed would be as the number of the stars counted.

    How do you know what God named the stars? God didn't tell us this anywhere that I know about. The fact that the names are the same in every language does not mean that name came from God. Surely you can see the logical jump you just made.

    Helen, this is a very poor attempt at exegesis. God's glory involves far more than Jesus. The glory of God is his worth and value, his majesty and magnificence. Get out your concordance and start looking up God's glory adn see how many references to it have nothing to do with Christ per se. You cannot limit it in such a manner. The text won't let you.

    Who said you did? The question for you is this: Did God do everything he could to secure the eternal life of all men in all times?

    Abraham's faith was in God as Gen 15:6 tells us. Again, the Scripture answers your question. Even Jeremiah's passage you cite does not command belief in this coming Messiah for salvation from sin. It simply prophesies it he will come.

    IT is clear that Jeremiah did know more, being as that he came later in the stages of progressive revelation. Job knew of a Redeemer, but that is not said to be the content of his saving faith. Noah was a preacher of righteousness but we see nothing in his preachig about Christ. You see, the problem is that you insist on saying things the Bible doesn't say. That means your theology isn't solidly biblical.

    Helen, LISTEN ... The word saphar does not mean to name. Why do you ignore the facts to maintain this position you have staked yourself to? I realize it will be hard for to back down from it now that you have made it so public, but it is a wrong position. You have misdefined the word and based your position on that mistake. Abraham believed God before he looked at the stars, as Gen 12 and Hebrews 11 shows us. The context of Gen 15.5 is clearly about counting. Again, the Bible is amazingly clear.

    Paul and Peter say nothing about a gospel in the stars. I haven't heard "so many missionaries" say this. In fact, I have read a few isolated anecdotes. But as I have pointed out, there is a perfectly good explanation that has nothign to do with the stars. YOu just won't accept it.

    Pharaoh was not a robot. He did what he wanted to do. But the Bible says what it says. It does not say that Pharaoh hardened his own heart first. I pointed out the errors in your statement, using the chronology of Scripture, and you deny it. And if God knew what Pharoah would do, then Pharaoh had no choice to do anything else.

    Because God's knowledge is perfect. Once God knows something, it has to come to pass. There is no other alternative. Before Judas was born, God knew (whether by decree or response). Therefore, during Judas's life he had no choice but to do what God knew he would do.

    We are all freee to choose what we will do, and given our sin nature, we will all choose to reject God because we are dead in trespasses and sins.

    But as we have shown, this simply cannot be proven.

    Helen, the more you post, the less serious we are able to take you. On points of clear biblical statement, you deny the Scripture (cf. Pharoah, Gen 15.5 and counting, etc.) Why? I don't get that. I understand that some people speak in haste before fully understanding the points. I have done that myself. I understand it is hard to back down once something has been made so public. But here, time after time, you keep repeating the same errors. It makes me think you are not interacting seriously with anything that is being said. There is certainly room for difference on some of the exegetical points being discussed. But some of this is clear biblical teaching and that is where we need to hang our theological hats.
     
  6. Paul33

    Paul33 New Member

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    God knows everything. What God foreknows is rendered certain. Some say "accidentally" or "necessarily" rendered certain. But simple foreknowledge does not require God to be the direct cause of a thing being rendered certain.

    God can desire that none perish. God can even provide a solution to man's problem so that none would have to perish. God can even give all of the potential persons an opportunity to be drawn by his grace. But man's free will (known to be in operation in the potential person that God has yet to create) can resist God's grace and God can pass over them, electing the rest to eternal life. All of this before the foundation of the world.

    A person might be born in real time and space, be known by God to be one who will resist and suffer eternal condemnation, be rendered certain by God, AND still be wholly responsible for his choice to rebel in real time and space!
     
  7. Paul33

    Paul33 New Member

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    There are alot of things in this world that we know from the study of nature or history that the Bible does not reveal. That does not make the information invalid.

    Zoroaster studying under Daniel is fascinating. If it is true it does explain the Magoi from the east searching for the star of Messiah that Daniel spoke of. This adds to our understanding. It does not detract from it.
     
  8. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    A POTENTIAL person has the opportunity to choose???

    Free will exists for a person before that person is yet created?

    That's MORMON, sir!
     
  9. Paul33

    Paul33 New Member

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    The promise of the Messiah begins in Genesis 3:15. This "Seed" is the story of the whole Bible.

    The Bible is the story of the promise of the Messiah from cover to cover. Abraham believed in the promise of Messiah (whether revealed from the stars or from God himself in the promise of Genesis 12:3 "all peoples on earth will be blessed through you").

    It is completely faulty to teach that the OT Saints didn't understand the concept of the SEED originally promised to Adam and Eve after the fall. The whole story turns on that promise! They knew that the seed would be Messiah. That's why Eve made the statement she made in Genesis 4:1!
     
  10. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    Right. This was my point. It doesn't matter whether God's knowledge is biblical foreknowledge or simply knowing something ahead of time. Either way, it is still certain with no other options.

    I must confess I am somewhat confused as to what a "potential person" is and what opportunities he has.

    This is true, but theology is in a camp all by itself and in that, we must be rigidly biblical.

    It may not be true however, and if it is, it adds nothing of import to the biblical story. God gave us in Scripture what he deemed necessary for us to know. Why would we not be satisfied to base our theology on that?
     
  11. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    Larry, reading your last post it is clear to me that you will do anything, even denigrate God's character, which IS love, to stand up for Calvinism. It doesn't matter what is presented to you or how much Scripture is quoted, you are worming your way around everything there in order to stand up for what you already believe to be true, despite Scripture.

    Job and Noah lived before Abraham. They were closer to creation and knew more than Abraham or Jeremiah, so your comment that Jeremiah knew more is simply wrong. The fact is, however, that they all knew of a Redeemer, a Messiah, who would be God Himself. They believed in Him, the Fulfilled Promise. They KNEW their Redeemer lived.

    So did Abraham.

    And all men have had that opportunity.

    You are also trying to make foreknowledge and foreordination synonyms. They are not.

    That's it for me. Trying to get you to pay attention to what the Bible actually says, what history says, what missionaries say (which, by the way, was not specifically about the gospel in the stars, but about the fact that God has left some knowledge of His Promise and Person in every tribe and nation since creation so that people could believe in Him if they so chose -- a fact I stated several times which you distorted to mean only the gospel in the stars), is rather like trying to pin warm jello to the wall.

    I'm not much for exercises in futility.
     
  12. Paul33

    Paul33 New Member

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    No it's not. It's God!

    God, within himself alone, can determine what kind of universe he wants to create and whether persons in that universe will be given free will. God, who knows everything, knows exactly what will happen if he creates a universe where sin is allowed, man would sin, and Jesus would be lifted up. God's foreknowledge, based solely in his nature as God, allows God to know what potential non-existent people will do with free will, and creates the universe anyway. He knew they would sin and that it would require the sacrifice of his Son, and he created the universe anyway. That is love.

    Man is free to choose because that's how God created man. God knows who is in Christ before the foundation of the world because that's who God is.

    Both are realities. The saved can only praise God for the gift of eternal life. The lost can only blame themselves for rejecting that gift. And God knew it all before he created.
     
  13. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    God knew it. Yes.

    But we did not choose before we were born! That is bizarre! If that were true then God would never say to us, "Come, let us reason together..." about our sin natures.
     
  14. Paul33

    Paul33 New Member

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    Larry,

    By potential persons, I mean non-existent persons in the mind of God before the foundation of the world.

    God knows, based solely in himself, what non-existent persons will do if he were to create them with free will.

    I do not mean spirit beings floating around in space waiting to be born, as Helen assumed.
     
  15. Paul33

    Paul33 New Member

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    That's simply not true, Helen.

    God is God. What God knows before he creates, he knows! Therefore, if man has free will, God knows what man will do even before he creates man.

    God desires that none perish. He wants everyone to come to him. But God also knows, based solely in his nature as God, who will persist in rebellion. He knew this before the creation of the universe. He knew this concerning potential non-existent persons. Free will is a fact, but it operates under the rubrick of God.

    What God knows, he knows. What man chooses, he chooses. And all of this before he created anything.

    I can't help it if you can't grasp this. But God's nature is God's nature and even you can't change it. [​IMG]
     
  16. Helen

    Helen <img src =/Helen2.gif>

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    I know God knew me before I was, but I also know I didn't choose anything before I was!

    One picture that I have used before may help explain this. I raised six children. About the time each was four, and ready to start giving up naps, I would offer that child a choice:

    "Do you want to take a nap and then be able to stay up later with daddy and mommy tonight, or would you rather skip your nap and go to bed at your regular time?"

    It didn't matter to me and there was no pressure or influence put on the child. The choice was absolutely free. And yet I knew each of my children well enough to know who would choose what. I didn't determine it, but I knew it. And I knew who would react in what way when the consequences of the choice were delivered.

    God knows us and has always known us. Nevertheless, not wanting any of us to perish, He has given each of us life and the opportunity to choose Him. That opportunity is a real opportunity and not something just for show.

    His foreknowledge does not negate our opportunity to choose in this life here, after we are born and grow up a bit!

    You are trying to stuff God into a box you can understand. That doesn't work. But He has given us enough in creation, such as our own children, to help us understand Him a little bit.
     
  17. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    Several problems (yet again). First, I have repeatedly said that this conversation has little or nothing to do with Calvinism. If you hadn't brought it up, it would have never been brought up. This is not about Calvinism. Second, I have done or said nothing to denigrate God's character. If you think I have, then put it forth. Third, God's character is much more than love. Once again, you are being too narrow. Fourth, I haven't stood up for Calvinism at all. I don't need to.

    Show me one place where Scritpure refutes what I believe. I haven't wormed my way around anything. I have repeatedly pointed out that you have used very little Scripture here to defend your view. Why? I haven't had to "worm" my way around much because you haven't used much. I have answered everything you have put forth.

    You don't know what Job and Noah knew more than Abraham and JEremiah. Surely you are familiar with progressive revelation. That is a basic theological doctrine that is covered very early in any theology training. IT means that God didn't reveal everything at once, but as Hebrews 1 says, he did it in "various portions and many ways." You have no idea what Noah preached. You have no idea what Job knew about his redeemer. You have no place in the life of Abraham where you see the content of the passage in JEremiah you quoted. Therefore, it is beyond dispute that Jeremiah knew more than Abraham, just as Paul knew more than Jeremiah.

    Do you seriously think I have disputed this? If so, then you need to go back and read closer. We don't know how much they knew about that redeemer. And not one place is belief in that redeemer ever made the content of saving faith. If you think otherwise, then show it from Scripture.

    Clearly this is not true, as I have already given examples. There is no way that you can prove such an assertion. I asked you previously and you have not yet answered: Do you believe God did everything in his power to bring all people in all times to faith and repentance? Answer us that.

    Foreknowledge is God's choosing ahead of time of Romans 11:2 says. It has to do specifically with people. It is not specifically knowing something ahead of time, for that would make no sense. Foreordination generally has more to do with activities and things than with people (generally speaking). He foreknows people and foreordained events (generally speaking, though not absolutely. There may be some exceptions). You have made some serious mistakes on the definition of biblical words. I don't know whether you just don't study much or study in depth, or you have no idea how to use a lexicon and compare the context of words. I really don't understand, but as I said, it is very hard to take you serious when you make these very simple errors, and then refuse to listen to people who actually know. I believe I asked you for a source for you novel definition of saphar (a word which you didn't even get right). You have yet to offer any lexical support for the definition you chose.

    Nonsense and you know it. I pay attention to all those things. I simply hold them in a proper relation to Scripture. YOu attribute more weight than is legitimate to anecdotal stories that you have no way to verify, and that you have no way to know the full background. To say that I refuse to pay attention is simply a false charge.

    In addition, it seems you are not used to being challenged biblically and you seem to have no idea how to handle it when someone uses Scripture to refute your ideas or to challenge them. You are much more accustomed to debating people with a low view of Scritpure, who don't take it seriously. You know from our interactions before that I am not that type of person. I hold Scripture very highly, and allow it alone to dictate my beliefs. I use it to challenge the beliefs of others. Here, we have several crystal clear examples of places where you have contradicted Scripture (cf. Gen 15.5, Pharaoh's hardening). You continue to hodl a position that has been demonstrated to be unbiblical.

    Helen, we have been through this before, where when you got challenged biblically you started responding in a rather unfortunate way. Here you are doing it again. Rather than addressing the substance of my comments and answering my questions, you have resorted to false accusations (about me not liking history, worming my way around Scripture), misrepresentations about what I said (about who believed what and where righteousness comes from, about the relevancy of Zoroaster), false definitions (about saphar), changing topics (trying to make this about Calvinism), and other things. IT is unacceptable in a civil conversation.

    BTW, you did use the gospel in teh stars as a part of your argument. YOu said

    The gospel in the stars is unbiblical. The gospel is in teh message of Christ in Scripture.

    Then why continue to argue for a position for which you have no biblical support? Talk about futility. You have been confronted head on with specific, documented evidence of your false claims. Yet you still hold them. What could be more futile?
     
  18. Artimaeus

    Artimaeus Active Member

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    Helen and Larry, just so you know that the debate wasn't totally futile, I enjoyed reading it. It was a hardnosed debate but not mean spirited like so many lately have been.
    [​IMG]
     
  19. Marcia

    Marcia Active Member

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    I didn't do this poll to get the answer. I think the Bible is more than clear on the answer. [​IMG]
    I voted "no."

    I did this poll because of views that I have seen increasingly in the church that people can be saved outside of knowing Christ, or knowing Christ through non-Christian religions. I was curious about these views existing here on the BB and thought a discussion on the topic would be useful.

    The poll so far:
    Yes - 6
    No - 48
    Unsure - 7
     
  20. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry <b>Moderator</b>
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    It certainly wan't meanspirited from my end, and I am glad someone profited to some degree or other. Helen and I have been around before, and there is certainly nothing personal in it. I appreciate very much Helen's comments in the creation field.
     
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