Do babies go to hell if they die?
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Steve



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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Frieda,

As for babies who die going to heaven or hell, the Bible does not necessarily direct any comments to the subject. However, it is a fair inferrence from several passages that an infant who dies is saved.

First, because Christ is said to have done as much to save the human race as Adam did to condemn it. Adam's sin caused all men to be born sinners, and to be condemned until they make a conscious decision to follow Christ. Christ's obedience, apparently, brought about justification to the whole race (Rom.5:18-19), suggesting that all are now born forgiven, until they make a conscious choice to serve sin.

This "conscious choice” to sin, can only be made after a child reaches an age capable of understanding moral responsibility. This point in life is sometimes (though not in scripture) referred to as "the age of accountability.” It seems to be acknowledged in several places that young children do not know the difference between right and wrong to any degree that would render them responsible before God for their sins (e.g., Deut.1:39/ Isa.7:16/ Jonah 4:11). This ability to discern between right and wrong demands some awareness and apprehension of God's laws or His requirements (Rom.3:20/5:13/7:7).

Paul said that there was a time in his life (probably childhood) when he was "alive without [knowledge of] the law" (Rom.7:9), but when he became aware of the law, it "killed" him (Rom.7:10-11). This business of being "alive" and being "killed" is clearly a reference to his spiritual state in relation to God...suggesting that he had been "alive to God" in his youth, before he gained awareness of God's moral law.

Largely for this reason, I believe that babies and young children who die before they know the difference between right and wrong die in a state of grace. Speaking of little children, Jesus said, "of such is the kingdom of God" (Mark 10:14). He seemed to be saying that these children, and others like them, are just what the kingdom is populated with.

Other passages directly link the degree of one's knowledge of right and wrong with the degree culpability and of punishment for wrongdoing he will receive (Luke 12:47-48/ Acts 17:30/1 Tim.1:15). No one is more ignorant than a newborn baby, and so no one could be less guilty of wrongdoing, or less liable to God's punishment.

Those who take the contrary view often say that physical death is a judgment of God upon sin (Gen.2:17/ Ezek.18:20/ Rom.6:23), and, since babies sometimes die at birth, this proves that they are guilty of sin (Adam’s sin imputed to them), and are under God’s judgment for that sin. Hence, they are not justified, but condemned, even from birth. If this argument were true, one could equally argue that a Christian who dies thereby proves himself to be not justified, but condemned and under God’s judgment, which the Bible plainly denies (Rom.8:1).

There is no statement of scripture that states that Adam's guilt has been imputed to children and there are two very good biblical arguments against this. First, the Bible teaches that "the son shall not bear the guilt of the father" (Ezekiel 18:20); and second, because Paul specificly affirms that "sin is not imputed where there is no law" (Rom.5:13). There can be no place more devoid of law than the conscience of an infant.

So why do babies sometimes die? For the same reason Christians do. Sin (in general) has brought death (in general) upon the human race. Even those against whom God “does not impute sin” will die physically, as will unforgiven sinners. However, because a Christian (and, I believe, an infant) dies in a state of grace, we can be assured that “though he were dead, yet shall he live” (John 11:25). Physical death of an individual, thus, does not testify to that person’s being subject, ultimately, to “the wages of sin.”

When Paul makes his case for the universal guilt and condemnation of the human race, he is presupposing that the persons under consideration are adults...or at least morally responsible decision-makers. He begins his argument by saying that "the wrath of God is revealed from heaven"—not against those who have never known the truth, but against those "who suppress the truth in unrighteousness" (Rom.1:18). I hardly think babies and little children fall into this category.

These are the main scriptural considerations that lead me to believe as I do on this subject.

In Jesus,
Steve
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eppsjason



Joined: 29 Oct 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2004 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I understand why the question would be asked. I was faced with it a few weeks ago in bible study. It does not say anywhere or imply as to what happens to babies when they die. All we know is God is the judge of that, read Psalms 98:9 "Before the Lord; for He cometh to judge the earth: with righteousness shall He judge the world, and the people with equity." Just be assured that God's judgments are righteous and just. Whatever He decides is perfect. We do not have the mind capacity to conclude what is fair or not. God is above us, read Isaiah 55:9 "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts." Also read Proverbs 3:5 "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding." Don't go off of what you think should or would happen, go to scripture. Regardless of what God decides there is no sorrow in heaven for what may or may not happen, read Revelations 21:4 "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away." So be comforted. Just make sure you make it to heaven by not sinning anymore and being obedient to God's will.
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Priestly1



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PostPosted: Mon Dec 20, 2004 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Unless you become like these little infants, you shall in no way see the Kingdom of Heaven...for of such is the Kingdom comprised." Infants are born innocent as Messiah and Paul state. Yes they are born of sinful parents and become tainted by their sinful examples and this world of sin....but in their youth they are innocents like Adam & Eve before they fell. So premature death of the innocent will only gain them Paradise.
The Western notion of Original Guilt, or Adam's guilt is Latinate foolishness. Ezekiel is clear...a child is not guilty because his Father sinned...period. Each soul that sins like Adam is guilty of his own sins....no others. Paul's statement in Roman's has been mistranslated in the Latin and henceforth has been transfered traditionally in all English versions. Here is a literal rendering.
"Therefore, because of one human sin infested the world, and because of sin death came too. Death spread throughout mankind, because all men have themselves sinned.
Sin infested the whole world until the giving of the Torah, but guilt cannot be assigned when there was no Torah. Even so, death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who did not sin in the same manner as Adam had done."
Notice that further down Paul shows us the Two Paths, one to Life in Christ and the other to Death in Adam. Two Choices. Adult choices. Because of Adam sin, death and condemnation entered into the world and has spread throughout humanity...BECAUSE ALL PEOPLE THEMSELVES HAVE SINNED. Because of Christ righteousness, life and redemption entered into the world and has spread throughout humanity....BECAUSE PEOPLE THEMSELVES HAVE REPENTED.

The notion of Adamic Guilt passed on to all the children of Adam is a false perception and misconsruction of Paul's argument. Did Adam have a sin nature before the Fall? No! How did he sin then? Like we all do....bad judgment and doubting God's veracity.No where does it teach we are born with a sin nature, we are born innocent and then Fall like Adam did. The Genesis story of Adam, Eve and the Tempter is our story too...we all have sinned like our Parents did...but we can choose another Way..Christ.


Merry Christ-Mass,
+Ken Huffman
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Paidion



Joined: 25 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 06, 2005 8:21 am    Post subject: Post-mortem Babies Reply with quote

As I understand the Scriptures, the question need not be asked. For when a person dies, whether baby or adult, he is DEAD! And he will remain dead unless God raises him to life again.

The Scriptures teach that God will raise everyone to life; there will be a resurrection of the righteous and a resurrection of the unrighteous.

So the question that could be posed, that has meaning for me, is what will be the state of the baby when it is raised? Will it be an adult, fully mature person? Or will it be a baby?

My speculation (Scripture does not deal with the question) is that it died a baby, and will be raised a baby ---- immortal, of course, like everyone else who is raised. In the resurrection it will grow up gradually, until it becomes mature.

But then, there's an even harder question. What will be the state of the aborted foetus in the resurrection? Any ideas?
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STEVE7150



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 06, 2005 9:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think scripture implies that a fetus is a human such as when John lept in his mothers womb upon hearing about Jesus. Therefore it seems that if all life is precious and God creates everything than the fetus s/b raised also unto judgement. But as Isaiah says "God will judge the world in righteousness."
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Paidion



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 06, 2005 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, yes, Steve7150; I fully agree.

But your statements do not address my question. Suppose a foetus dies in say the first month, or a zygote dies (just the united egg and sperm).
What will it look like when it is resurrected?

In the case of a zygote, will it still be a zygote in the resurrection, and just carry on from there in its growth?
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STEVE7150



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 07, 2005 5:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Michelle, If you take Isaiah 65.20 literally it says "Never again will there be an infant who lives but a few days ,or an old man who does not live out his years,he who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere youth."
So if you don't believe in a milleneum period and if you take this literally than it sounds like babies will grow up naturally to be adults in heaven. I've heard that in the eternal state we will be in our pristine condition but i don't recall where that scripture is.
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Paidion



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 07, 2005 7:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I wouldn't think so, Paidion, because wouldn't it need a womb to protect and nurture it?


That is naturally what we would think, because of our experience in this life. But perhaps in the resurrection it will be protected and nurtured directly by God.
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Sean



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 07, 2005 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paidion wrote:
Well, yes, Steve7150; I fully agree.

But your statements do not address my question. Suppose a foetus dies in say the first month, or a zygote dies (just the united egg and sperm).
What will it look like when it is resurrected?

In the case of a zygote, will it still be a zygote in the resurrection, and just carry on from there in its growth?


By that logic, if a Christian dies by fire, they will be resurrected as charred and burned. In other words, they will resemble the latest stage they were in before death.

I think we will be given a resurrection body that is perfect, in a perfect state of development. Remember, we grow as infants to a state of maturity and then decline after that until death because of the curse. A resurrection body will be a mature one, not one that still needs to mature more.
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Paidion



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2005 2:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
By that logic, if a Christian dies by fire, they will be resurrected as charred and burned. In other words, they will resemble the latest stage they were in before death.

I think we will be given a resurrection body that is perfect, in a perfect state of development. Remember, we grow as infants to a state of maturity and then decline after that until death because of the curse. A resurrection body will be a mature one, not one that still needs to mature more.


Many times I have heard people say that everyone will have an apparent
age of about 30 (supposedly the ideal age). Yet somehow ---- and I admit this may be mere human reasoning --- it seems ludicrous that a single-celled zygote, the union of a sperm and egg, would be resurrected as a 30-year old, with absolutely no experience in living.
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Paidion



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good point, Michelle.

There is, of course, the following difference (and perhaps this is not necessary for me to point out, as you are fully aware of it):

We are discussing the resurrection of the zygote.

Your reference is to the creation of Adam.
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Sean



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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paidion wrote:
Good point, Michelle.

There is, of course, the following difference (and perhaps this is not necessary for me to point out, as you are fully aware of it):

We are discussing the resurrection of the zygote.

Your reference is to the creation of Adam.


True, but like I pointed out. The "zygote" isn't going to be raised as a zygote. It's going to be raised in a glorified state, in the image of Christ, not the image of a zygote.

No matter how small, a unique human being with unique DNA is a unique person.

I mean, will someone born retarted and deformed be resurrected retarted and deformed? Again, I believe we will be like Jesus in the resurrection, not like "us".
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Paidion



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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I mean, will someone born retarted and deformed be resurrected retarted and deformed? Again, I believe we will be like Jesus in the resurrection, not like "us".


I understand you, Sean.

Yet I see a difference in being born retarded or deformed, or blind, with hands attached to the shoulders.

All of these are aberrations of what we were meant to be. So of course, these defects will not be present in the resurrection of these people. Likewise, if we were born normal, but went blind later, or lost an arm, or became senile, we would not expect to be resurrected with these defects.
I suppose the resurrection of Jesus, with the nail prints in his hands, and the spear thrust in his side, was an exception, as an everlasting reminder of what He did in suffering and dying on our behalf.

But being a zygote, or a pre-born child, or a born child of 8 months old, is not a defect. They are a natural part of the development of the child, just what the child was meant to be. Just like being born with two arms, two legs, and a head, is natural, and God's intention for us.

So I would conclude that we could expect to have two arms, two legs, and a head in the resurrection. And just possibly, if we were a zygote, a foetus, or an 8-month-old child at the time of death, we might be resurrected at that age and allowed to grow to maturity.

Someone could argue that if this were the case, then to be consistent a 95 year old person would be resurrected at an apparent age of 95. I am not at all certain whether or not this would be a logical deduction. But if they were, they might not look 95, but may appear to be ageless.

When John saw Jesus in his vision on the island of Patmos, he did not see a robust young man of 30. This is what he saw:

Rev 1:12-18 Then I turned to see the voice that was speaking to me, and on turning I saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed with a long robe and with a golden girdle round his breast; his head and his hair were white as white wool, white as snow; his eyes were like a flame of fire, his feet were like burnished bronze, refined as in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of many waters ... and his face was like the sun shining in full strength. When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. But he laid his right hand upon me, saying, "Fear not, I am the first and the last, and the living one; I died, and behold I am alive for evermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades.
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Prakk



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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 2:29 pm    Post subject: We really don't know. Reply with quote

Tonante wrote:
"He mourned for several days and then when his servants asked him why he seemed to nonchalantly wash and eat after mourning in sackcloth for many days he gives the passage in 2nd Samuel 12:22 - 23. He's going to him which appears to indicate that this child will be reunited with his father after death."
Or, death is the end of the line one way or the other, the child then would go where he goes. Many interpret the passage to state that David expected to be reunited with his son after death. The translations that I read give me the impression that David was saying that the child would no longer speak to him as the child was dead. There's considerable weight in scripture to suggest that Bathsheba's child would not have truly been David's son anyway, since he was conceived while Bathsheba was bound to Uriah, and would have been, as the issue of the "one flesh" partner of Uriah, Uriah's son.

In any case no answer is provided in scripture about the destination of the stillborn or of dead infants. We only know they are chosen for one fate or another as all of us are before the foundations of the world. John the Baptist for instance, lept in his mother's womb upon the arrival of Mary. John was already God's servant. We know that Judas was a "Son of Perdition" also suggesting he was consigned to hell from the beginning. The danger in the temptation to declare all infants in the arms of God is that of Andrea Yates, who killed her children while they were still "innocent" to save them while they were "still innocent". By acting all soft and fuzzy on this issue, we also make abortion Doctors the world's greatest evangelists as they consign millions to heaven by killing them while they are yet young.

Hugh McBryde
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STEVE7150



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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2005 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Judas being called "son of predition" means he was elected to hell from the beginning? Really , well then Peter must be headed there too since Jesus called him Satan. "Get thee behind me Satan." I still have not seen a single legitimate verse that seals a persons eternal destiny to events that must take place in this lifetime only.
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