Will babies and children who are too
young to make a decision for Christ be saved?
What will happen to older people who have had no opportunity to know
Christ? Will they be saved?
These questions have been in the minds of
many people over the centuries. The
popular teaching is that everyone will go to heaven, but the Bible and the
Spirit of Prophecy, I believe, give clear information on this question.
In Ezekiel 18, there are statements made
that we must take into account in searching for truth in this matter. The first part of this chapter establishes
the fact that all life (souls) belongs to God.
He is the giver of life, and He is the withholder of life. It all belongs to Him to do with as He
pleases. In verses 5–9, God lays down
the qualifications for acceptance with Him.
Then, in verses 10–13, there is established the difference between a
father who is just and his offspring who is unjust. The offspring cannot ride on the father’s
good deeds; he will be judged for his own sin.
“The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the
son.” Verse 20. This establishes the fact that every person
is responsible for his own sin. It is
sin that brings forth death.
In Romans 2:2, we read: “But we are sure
that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such
things.” Verses 6 and 7 tell us: “Who
will render to every man according to his deeds: To them who by patient
continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour
and immortality, eternal life.” Verses
11–16 go on to tell how God will judge the people who do not have knowledge of
God through the Law of God. They will be
judged according to what they know. God
will not excuse some just because they did not know and were bad. “For as many as have sinned without law shall
also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged
by the law.” Verse 12. He will judge accordingly. Good or bad, they will be judged according to
what they have done.
The story of the Passover reveals to us
the plan of God regarding little children.
In Selected Messages, Book 3,
314, we read: “The word of God came to the Israelites in bondage to gather
their children into their houses and to mark the doorposts of their houses with
blood from a lamb, slain. This
prefigured the slaying of the Son of God and the efficacy of His blood, which
was shed for the salvation of the sinner.
It was a sign that the household accepted Christ as the promised
Redeemer. It was shielded from the
destroyer’s power. The parents evidenced
their faith in implicitly obeying the directions given them, and the faith of
the parents covered themselves and their children. They showed their faith in Jesus, the great
Sacrifice, whose blood was prefigured in the slain lamb. The destroying angel passed over every house
that had this mark upon it. This is a
symbol to show that the faith of the parents extends to their children and
covers them from the destroying angel.”
Regarding the children of unbelieving
parents, we read, “Whether all the children of unbelieving parents will be
saved we cannot tell, because God has not made known His purpose in regard to
this matter, and we had better leave it where God has left it and dwell upon
subjects made plain in His Word.” Ibid., 315.
I hope this has helped to give some
understanding to this age-old question.
Pastor Mike Baugher
is Associate Speaker for Steps to Life.
If you have a question you would like Pastor Mike to answer, e-mail it
or mail it to: LandMarks, Steps to Life, P. O. Box 782828, Wichita, KS 67278.