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Can non Christians go to heaven?

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  • Can non Christians go to heaven?

    There are people who were put in situations were becoming a Christian is impossible. If you are born in Afghanistan converting to Christianity is impossible because leaving Islam can get you beheaded there. Then we have North Korea, An atheistic communist and dictatorial state that banned all religions. Are people in such situations able to be saved by God?

    How about aborted babies? They never had a chance to be baptized.

  • #2
    A lot of early Christians had to avoid persecution by the Romans and other cultures before Christianity came in the open. These people would express themselves religiously only in confidence and excersised their faith in catacombs and hideouts. It's not impossible to believe or convert to Christianity and be baptised as long as no one else finds out.
    No one will ever know you left Islam especially if you live in the big city where people don't know each other and no one will miss you at the mosque prayer.
    In some modern Muslim countries, you might not find an open church in a hundred mile radius, but people gather for communion either way. There's small pockets of believers even in the strictest Middle Eastern countries, and the internet makes it easier for people to organise themselves without arising suspicion.
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    • #3
      Being baptized does not mean you are a Christian, nor does it mean you are saved. That is a huge misconception of the Roman Catholic Church. Baptism is a sign that you are set apart by God, but it is not a prerequisite to being saved. Also, it does not mean you need to be baptized with water; you can be baptized in the Holy Spirit without having been baptized with water.

      When it comes to children, or aborted babies it comes down to the faith of one or both of the parents. (look up covenant succession)

      As Julianne pointed out there are plenty of people who basically live in hiding as a Christian.

      By the way, the title of your thread really does not match up with your question.
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      • #4
        Let me jump in with the other question, since the OP has been answered, but not the TITLE.

        "Can non-Christians go to Heaven?"
        No.

        John 3:18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does notbelieve stands condemned already because they have not believedin the name of God's one and only Son.
        (A Non-Christian, by definition, does not believe in Jesus and so stands "condemned already".)

        John 14:16 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
        (I believe Jesus, and 'no one' means no one.)

        I could go on and on, but the bottom line is that the default condition of every human being is an enemy of God. As Romans describes us all ...

        Romans 3:10-18
        As it is written:
        There is no one righteous, not even one;
        there is no one who understands;
        there is no one who seeks God.
        All have turned away,
        they have together become worthless;
        there is no one who does good,
        not even one.”
        “Their throats are open graves;
        their tongues practice deceit.”
        “The poison of vipers is on their lips.”
        “Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.”
        “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
        ruin and misery mark their ways,
        and the way of peace they do not know.”
        “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”


        So apart from Jesus, there is no forgiveness, and without forgiveness there is no hope of being with God in heaven.

        Romans 10:9-10 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

        THIS is what it means to be a Christian. This is what it means to be forgiven. This is what it means to be a new creation. Without this, we are never going to enter into heaven. However, do not miss the GOOD NEWS, it is not by our efforts that we are saved, it by trusting in Jesus efforts that we are saved.
        Last edited by atpollard; 05-08-2017, 05:13 AM.
        Comment>

        • #5
          While not disagreeing with most of what has been said, I would add or clarify that being a follower of Christ is not dependent on the label of Christian being attached. In these United States it appears to me that a great many people who do bear that label really know little about what it means to be like Christ [to be Christian]. The Apostle Paul was addressing that, at least indirectly here:

          Rom 2:28 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:
          Rom 2:29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.

          In chapter 4 of Romans the same Apostle is speaking about Abraham's faith before he was circumcised. If circumcision identifies a Jew then Abraham was no Jew until many years [more than 20] after he was called to serve God. This could be like those who have never enter a physical church because they didn't exist or were inaccessible or they had never owned a Bible because there were none available.

          Believers can go to the Lord without the trimmings when there are no trimmings. Remember the words penned by Solomon:

          "Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts." Prov 21:2

          But also recall the words of Jesus here:

          "But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more." Luke 12:48

          We, in these United States and in some other western and countries have generally been given more to work with than so many countries such as North Korea and the strongly Islamic countries. We need to remember that "much is given... much is required".
          This means Bibles, time, money, education, opportunities, etc. What are we doing with what we have?

          Comment>

          • #6
            I will remain silent on babies since scripture is silent on the matter. God will do what He thinks best and His decision will be perfect.

            On these other questions, I can offer answers from real people in the real world:
            Originally posted by Sparky View Post
            There are people who were put in situations were becoming a Christian is impossible. If you are born in Afghanistan converting to Christianity is impossible because leaving Islam can get you beheaded there. Then we have North Korea, An atheistic communist and dictatorial state that banned all religions. Are people in such situations able to be saved by God?
            There is no situation where becoming a Christian is impossible. God has people reaching out to the unsaved in the most unimaginable conditions.

            The Moldives are a string of islands south of India. They are a 100% Muslim nation in which both proselytizing and converting to a religion other than Islam is illegal. There are no Bibles or missionaries permitted in the country, Christians are denied Visas and expelled immediately upon discovery. A group of Christians were hired by the government of the Moldives to travel from island to island studying and documenting ways to improve the local fishing industry and make it sustainable. God raised up missionaries with advanced degrees in biology and ecology and had a Muslim Government pay to send them to live in remote communities with their wives and children. The Moldives do not behead converts, but as people heard the Gospel and converted they were placed under house arrest. In most cases, they were one of only a very few Christians in their community and shunned and forced to live in isolation. After about 5 years, there was an election and a change of leadership. The new government decided to crack down and expelled all foreigners from the country to end this subversive missionary work. They also decided to imprison all of these converts. So hundreds of Moldivian Christian Converts were removed from house arrest in small isolated villages and all thrown into the prison in the capital. For some, it was the first time they had met another christian except for the missionaries. Revival broke out in the prison and hundreds of Christians were encouraged by fellowship with other Christians. What the Government intended to break their spirit, gave birth to a full blown underground Church of Jesus Christ. The missionaries continue to work openly with the moldivian ethnics living in southern India and recieve occasional messages from friends in the Moldives. The government returned the people to their villages and the locals continue to share the gospel under threat of arrest and punishment.

            If you remember the fall of the USSR, you may remember that North Korea had nothing on Stalin and the Soviet Union had banned Christianity for at least three full generations, educating children that the State is their god and Christianity is a tool of oppressive capitalism to control the masses. When the Russian Orthodox Church in Moscow was able to hold a mass for the first time in three generations, the priest stood and intoned the traditional "He is risen". Without hesitation thousands of Russian Orthodox Christians, most of whom had NEVER attended a mass, shouted back in unison the traditional response "He is risen indeed!" Stalin and the Soviet Union had failed. Jesus Christ was still alive and well in communist Russia.

            I have a friend who was at Tienemen Square in China. He was born and raised in China, and sought asylum in the US after he graduated school. Were you aware that there is an official 'Christian Church' in China where you can attend without persecution and fear. The only difference between the 'Government Christian Church' and the 'Underground Christian Church' is that the government church is willing to acknowledge that the first loyalty of every person is to the Communist Government of China and their second loyalty is to Jesus Christ. Those risking beatings and imprisonment and smuggling bibles and meeting in house churches in China do so because they refuse to place the State before God in their lives. Being caught worshiping in a house church means imprisonment and imprisonment frequently ends in death. Yet the Government Church is a largely empty building and the home churches are growing rapidly.

            In Western China lives a people group discriminated against by most ethnic Chinese. They are mostly Muslim and related to the Turkish (ethnically) but speak their own unique language. I know of a small group of missionaries all in their twenties who went to live in China to reach them with the gospel. Shared music, learning theirs and teaching them western tunes, allowed them to build friendships and bridges to share the gospel. It allowed them to learn this unique language to translate the Bible into their language. God can use music to reach people who are Muslim, living in communist China, a persecuted minority and speak a unique language with the Gospel of Christ.

            So where can God not reach?
            Last edited by atpollard; 05-08-2017, 05:19 AM.
            Comment>

            • #7
              Originally posted by atpollard
              Let me jump in with the other question, since the OP has been answered, but not the TITLE.

              No.

              John 3:18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does notbelieve stands condemned already because they have not believedin the name of God's one and only Son.
              (A Non-Christian, by definition, does not believe in Jesus and so stands "condemned already".)

              John 14:16 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
              (I believe Jesus, and 'no one' means no one.)

              I could go on and on, but the bottom line is that the default condition of every human being is an enemy of God. As Romans describes us all ...

              Romans 3:10-18
              As it is written:
              There is no one righteous, not even one;
              there is no one who understands;
              there is no one who seeks God.
              All have turned away,
              they have together become worthless;
              there is no one who does good,
              not even one.”
              “Their throats are open graves;
              their tongues practice deceit.”
              “The poison of vipers is on their lips.”
              “Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.”
              “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
              ruin and misery mark their ways,
              and the way of peace they do not know.”
              “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”


              So apart from Jesus, there is no forgiveness, and without forgiveness ther is no hope of being with God in heaven.

              Romans 10:9-10 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

              THIS is what it means to be a Christian. This is what it means to be forgiven. This is what it means to be a new creation. Without this, we are never going to enter into heaven. However, do not miss the GOOD NEWS, it is not by our efforts that we are saved, it by trusting in Jesus efforts that we are saved.
              That is indeed the GOOD NEWS! Acts 4:12.
              Comment>

              • #8
                As long as you are living in Christian world or the liberal world where religious tolerance is practiced by the state, you can continue to practice your faith. However, in the world where religion in general in banned, North Korea for instance, it is really hard to stick to your faith. Thus practicing religion depends on the environment. Likewise, if you have deep faith in your God, it is really hard to accept people who are not with your God. For example how could you befriend a Muslim man knowing the Islamist are killing Christians in many parts of the world. The Bible opens the door for non believers and even sinners to embrace Jesus, but the book says those who does not believe in Jesus will not go to heaven.
                Comment>

                • #9
                  Originally posted by luri View Post
                  As long as you are living in Christian world or the liberal world where religious tolerance is practiced by the state, you can continue to practice your faith. However, in the world where religion in general in banned, North Korea for instance, it is really hard to stick to your faith. Thus practicing religion depends on the environment. Likewise, if you have deep faith in your God, it is really hard to accept people who are not with your God. For example how could you befriend a Muslim man knowing the Islamist are killing Christians in many parts of the world.
                  If Jesus ate with tax collectors, we can tolerate others who believe differently. How can you witness to someone if you can't speak to them? If you are going to judge people, judge them for what they do, not what others like them do. Something that I think you overlook are things like Parents Circle, a joint Israeli/Palestinian organisation for parents who have lost their children to the conflict. They work on forgiveness and reconciliation to bring peace and end the fighting. Are you saying you couldn't be friends with a member of that organisation because they were Muslim, but you'd be friends with the Christian and Jewish members?

                  Back on topic, practicing faith in areas of oppression like North Korea is hard but possible. What about people like uncontacted Amazon tribes, or those born before Christ? They may never have heard of Christianity.
                  Comment>

                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Sparky View Post
                    There are people who were put in situations were becoming a Christian is impossible. If you are born in Afghanistan converting to Christianity is impossible because leaving Islam can get you beheaded there. Then we have North Korea, An atheistic communist and dictatorial state that banned all religions. Are people in such situations able to be saved by God?

                    To answer your main question, no, one cannot be saved with Christ (John 14:6). The examples you cited (living in an extremist Islamic country or under a Communist regime) are very difficult situations, but, remember, discipleship isn't easy for anyone, and most difficult for others. There are many who have came to faith and persevered under horrid conditions. Others perished. Ultimately, the Christian must "not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell" (Matthew 10:28).

                    If you are interested in historical examples of martyrdom, one text that I can recommend is The Martyrs Mirror. The text is available free here and the illustrations here. If you wish to have a bound copy in your library, a publishing house that can supply said is Pathway Publishers (43632 CR 390, Bloomingdale, MI 49026).

                    God bless.
                    Comment>

                    • #11
                      I do not believe so as embracing Christianity is the first step on getting into heaven. Even the man that was nailed to the cross beside Jesus Christ repented and therefore joined Jesus in paradise right after. There are also several events in the bible where a Christian would fight 'till death for his faith, refusing to succumb to any other religion/beliefs. Sometimes, we have to fight for our faith, regardless if it means life or death. If you have faith, you should not fear death for you know that you will be held by your Father in heaven.
                      Comment>

                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Sparky View Post
                        How about aborted babies? They never had a chance to be baptized.
                        The short answer is "No" to the OP.

                        As to babies and young children (whether aborted or not) since they are incapable of responding to the Gospel, they are redeemed by grace through the shed blood of Christ, who took away the sin of the world.

                        In fact the Lord made it clear regarding young children that "of such is the Kingdom of Heaven". But water baptism does not save anyone (even though many believe in baptismal regeneration).

                        As to those who would be persecuted or killed for their faith in Christ, that is certainly not a barrier to being converted, since there have been thousands who have died for their faith, and are even now being persecuted and killed.
                        Comment>

                        • #13
                          Non- Christians can receive Christ after the judgement. If they do they will be saved.
                          Comment>

                          • #14
                            Originally posted by mrtsail View Post
                            Non- Christians can receive Christ after the judgement. If they do they will be saved.
                            What do you base that on? After the judgement?
                            Comment>

                            • #15
                              I wouldn't want to test it, but that is what I believe. Just reflecting on the character of God.
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