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A Matter of Faith (03/30/2008)
Thanks for nothing

From: Jamie Smith

Concerning the explanation of age of accountability by the pastor of Calvary Baptist: With sincere and due respect and for the most part ignoring the assumptive and superior remarks, after hundreds of words, many Scriptures and lots of opinion, the conclusion given by Pastor was that we cannot say one way or another on the ultimate fate of a dead child. This is frequently the answer (i.e. I don't know.) concerning many important questions in orthodoxy since there is a juggling act that must be maintained. All doctrines must be kept airborne since there is no consistent and firm foundation on which they can rest.

My understanding is that Christ doesn't "offer" forgiveness, He secures it for us. Even more, He secures righteousness. It is not our "relationship with Christ" that determines our "place in heaven" it is His relationship with His Father. There is no "merit" on our part concerning our salvation, it is Christ's merit.

Let's look at two easily understood and related principles, yet ones that are difficult to believe for Christians. I will insert the word "children" for "mankind" and "many" to tie it to the specific human subset we are considering. First - Ro 5:18(CLV): "Consequently, then, as it was through one offense for all [children] for condemnation, thus also it is through one just award for all [children] for life's justifying." 5:19(CLV): "For even as, through the disobedience of the one man, the [children] were constituted sinners, thus also, through the obedience of the One, the [children] shall be constituted just."

Here scripture says that all children shall be justified. Contrary to Pastor's theory, active rebellion or reasoned thought is not in view when salvation is the issue. It is Christ and Christ alone who secures salvation for us.

Second - Ro 5:20(CLV): "Yet law came in by the way, that the offense should be increasing. Yet where sin increases, grace superexceeds."

The function of the law crept in. It changed nothing except to increase the sinfulness of sin. Obedience to the law would have banished sin and death. No need for obedience now since grace exceeds the effects of sin. Not only that, grace superexceeds the offense of those under the law so that now grace has dethroned sin. It seems clear to me then, that Christ is greater than Adam. All that Adam brought to humanity is more than defeated by Christ. Orthodoxy believes Adam is greater than Christ. My opinion is that grace trumps sin - for everyone. Orthodoxy believes sin trumps grace - for most people.

I have an opinion and it is just that, an opinion. So does the Pastor. From here, Scripture clearly teaches that the ultimate end for dead children is endless life with Christ. There is no qualification of having correct thoughts concerning God. God and Christ have an arrangement where we are the beneficiary for God's glory. When the pressure of having to believe correctly and behave correctly is eliminated, then we tend to believe more correctly and behave better. There is no reason to put on a holy front for others. What a pain that is. Such is the power of the gospel. Such is freedom.



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