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No worries. I did say in that post that Vicki is saved. But not because she's mentally challenged: she's told me her testimony of how she accepted Christ after a church service a few years back. Almost every time I take her to the mall, she asks me when Jesus is coming back. :smile:
I think you and I agree that babies, including aborted babies, and the mentally challenged without moral awareness go to Heaven if/when they die.
We agree.

Thanks for answering. I agree, with the operative word being ''accomodate.'' After we're saved, if we've truly repented, we ought not carry on in a lifestyle of sin. We ought not sin presumptuously or willfully.
Romans 6:1-2 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
Fact is, those reborn of God's seed cannot bring forth evil fruit. (1 John 3:9)
Grape vines can't bring forth figs.
God (root, vine, branch) cannot bring forth murder, adultery, theft, etc.

This passage is written in present tense though. Paul is describing his own struggle against sin and the ongoing battle that he had between the old man (carnal, fleshly nature) and the new man (spiritual, godly nature).
No, some of it is written in "present-historical" or, "present-narrative" tense.
The flesh has been crucified, so isn't even a facet of Paul's reborn life. (Rom 6:3-6)
The next verse supplies the result of his (our) crucifixion with Christ..."For he that is dead is freed from sin."
The law of sin has been eclipsed by the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus. (Rom 8:2)
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Babies aren't aware of sin, children do start to learn what is right from wrong but its when they reach adulthood that they become responsible, which is usually technically at the time of puberty, or menses for girls. Boys had their bar mitsvah around 12-13. That was when they could read scripture/ Torah in the synagogue.

Why are children innocent and not adults. Well, its the nature of children to be innocent and trusting. That is why Jesus does not forbid them to enter the Kingdom. This is not to say they cannot act sinfully by being selfish etc but they aren't really aware or responsible for it.

When Jesus was born King Herod killed all males under 2 in Bethlehem and that was called slaughter of the innocents. It wasn't because they sinned or anything. But these children would not be forbidden to enter heaven.

If there is sin in us, we need to get it out by the roots, you'd be surprised what is hiding in people's hearts they hadn't cast it out or repented of. Repent means turn around, or change your heart.

If you are dead to sin, you can't sin. It wouldn't cross your mind to sin, you wouldn't want to sin. And if you did you'd know it was wrong. That's the amazing thing about God's grace it changes you.

Am surprised that many christians continue to think of themselves as just sinners saved by grace when they ought to be identifying with the saints.
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I am concerned that so many people are being persuaded to accept a false grace gospel rather than the true gospel, and thus many are buying into a false hope of salvation and eternal life with God, based on half-truths or twisted truths, both of which are still lies. And, if they believe the lies rather than accept the truth, they are in danger of the fires of hell.
Actually, if you read 2 Timothy 2nd chapter at the link below, it testifies that even former believers are still saved, but they are still called to go before that throne of grace for help in discerning the lies that overthrew their faith to depart from even that iniquity of unbelief. There are other iniquities that saved believers need His help in discerning so as to lean on Him for help to depart from those iniquities as all of us have the calling to depart from iniquity continuously to be received by Him as a vessel unto honor in His House.

Bible Gateway passage: 2 Timothy 2 - King James Version

So hell is not the consequence for being led astray, but being left behind at the pre trib rapture to be received later on as vessels unto dishonor in His House is the consequence.

1 Corinthians 9:24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. 25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: 27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

What I mean by this is that many preachers and teachers today are telling people that they can be assured of heaven when they die by merely accepting Jesus’ forgiveness of their sins, i.e. by accepting his grace, and through a mere acknowledgment that Jesus exists or of what he did for us in dying on the cross for our sins, so that we could be delivered from the punishment of sin and have the hope of eternal life in heaven with God.

Many of them are telling the people, too, that all they have to do is repeat some prayer after them, after which they congratulate them for having accepted Christ as their Savior, and for having secured heaven as their final resting place, which, they say, can never be taken away from them.

For even though I am absent in body, nevertheless I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good discipline and the stability of your faith in Christ.

The truth of the matter is that Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. He died that we might no longer live for ourselves, but for him who gave his life up for us. He died, too, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who walk (in lifestyle) no longer after the flesh, but according to the Spirit of God.

Jesus said that if anyone would come after him, he must deny self, take up his cross daily (die daily to sin and self) and follow (obey) him. What this means is that repentance and obedience are part of the gospel message. Jesus said that, if we want to hold on to our old lives (of living for sin and self) we will lose them (for eternity), but if we lose our lives (die with Christ to sin) for his sake, then we will save our lives (for eternity) (Lu. 9:23-25).
I actually see the denying part as denying myself as being able to follow Him religiously, and picking up my cross daily is to say that it is not I who live but Christ in me, in how I am following Him & His words as we can only follow Him by faith & by the grace of God too. Since we could not save ourselves, then we are to surrender by resting in Him to help us lay aside every weight & sin in running that race as my confidence is in Him to finish it to His glory. The crowns I may receive are His crowning achievements in me which is to His glory and not mine. This is why little children are free to come to the Lord, because all the can do is take Him at His word by trusting Him for all things, even for following Him.

Paul reiterated these words of Jesus when he said that coming to faith in Jesus Christ means death to sin and living to righteousness. He said that Christ delivered us out of slavery (bondage, addiction) to sin, so that we would now be slaves of his righteousness. He said, too, that if we walk (in lifestyle) according to the flesh (sin), we will die (in our sins), but if by the Spirit we are putting to death the deeds of the flesh, we will live (with Christ for eternity). For, when we believe in Jesus, we are given new lives in Christ, created to be like God (in his likeness) in true righteousness and holiness (See: Rom. 6:1-23; Rom. 8:1-17; Eph. 4:17-24).

Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.

So, the point of our salvation is not just so we can escape hell and have the promise of heaven when we leave this earth. We are also not forgiven our sins just on the basis of Jesus’ death on a cross for our sins, but on the basis of our faith in Jesus Christ, which involves both repentance and obedience. And, Jesus didn’t die just to forgive us our sins, but to deliver us out of slavery to sin. He didn’t die just to save us, but to transform us.

So, on the basis of what Jesus did for us in becoming sin for us on that cross so that he put our sin to death, and in being resurrected from the dead, so that we can born again and live new lives in him, we should walk (conduct our lives) according to the Holy Spirit, and no longer according to our flesh.
That also includes making and keeping a commitment or a promise to follow Christ religiously as that is not living by faith in Jesus Christ, nor can it ever be. It was a double-minded state that the Lord had delivered me from so that I can rest in Him for all things in following Him. It is by faith in Him in seeing how I am following Him by the grace of God is how I am getting to know Him and the power of His resurrection.

But, this shouldn’t be just because we have to, or because it is expected of us, but we should be so thankful that Jesus set us free that we want to live for him. We should be so thankful that he delivered us out of slavery to sin that we won’t want to walk in sin any longer. And, we should be so in love with God, with Jesus Christ, that we desire him above all else, and we want to obey him.

For, when we are born again of the Spirit of God, he changes our hearts. We are turned from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God so that we can receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in Jesus Christ. Thus, if we pray the prayer to receive Christ, or if we say we believe in Jesus, but nothing changes, i.e. our hearts are not truly turned from darkness to light, but we continue living just like we did before, then, according to scripture, we are not truly saved.
If we look to ourselves, then we run in vain that race. When we got saved, we surrendered and called on the Lord Jesus Christ to save us because we can't do it. That same surrender is required for us to trust Him as our Good Shepherd for the help as well as the power we need for following Him. He did not take off and say.... good luck... you will need it. He said that all power has been given unto Him and that He is with us always.

Matthew 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Another thing to know here is that our salvation is not a one-time experience and then we can live however we want and that one day we go to heaven. We are saved (past), we are being saved (present) and we will be saved when Jesus Christ returns (future). Our eternal life is also guaranteed only on the basis of present tense belief, not on the basis of past belief. And, our walk in Christ is also critical to our assurance of eternal life with God (See: Lu. 9:23-25; Rom. 8:1-17; Gal. 5:19-21; 1 Jn. 1:5-9; Heb. 9:28).
We have to be saved now since we had been saved at the calling of the gospel if we are to testify of Jesus Christ as the Good News to mankind as our Saviour. If we are in the process of being saved, then we cannot say that we are saved when you make it as if it is on us to be continuously saved by following Him by faith for that would be denying that you are saved by faith.

When a brother or sister goes astray, and even if they stop believing in Him, that does not mean they were never saved when ( if you read 2 Timothy 2nd chapter at that link above, ) He still abides ( 2 Timothy 2:13 for a shortcut ) and so it is christian love that we seek their good in the Lord to correct them and to ask them to pray to Jesus for help in seeing the lies that turned them away so they can repent as well as depart from whatever iniquity that has gripped them.

So, when people tell you that you can merely accept God’s grace or repeat some words in a prayer and that heaven is guaranteed you, but that you don’t have to turn from your sins or obey God, don’t believe them. They are trying to persuade you away from genuine faith in Christ Jesus, our Lord.
When people are doing that, they are not making disciples of new believers in how they are to live that reconciled relationship with God through Jesus Christ as their Good Shepherd and not just as their Saviour.

Hmm I dont think certain evangelists ever say 'after you believe in Jesus, thats all there is too it' kind of thing but I think many evangelists dont actually tell the complete gospel, because they rush headlong and many dont have time...they treat the gospel like a political campaign to get people to 'make a decision for christ' and then dont follow through with the promises.

People need to understand that Jesus has made a new covenant and a covenant means promises..on his part a promise of salvation and on our part if we stick with Him this will be assured. Its like being married, you dont just have a wedding and say I do and then dont stay together.
The reason they do not follow through is because no one can follow Him by keeping a promise. Any sin committed after that "decision" which you are taking to be as a promise, is breaking that decision as well as that promise. This was why I was disheartened and felt like a fraud for doing the best I can in keeping my commitment to make Jesus Lord of my life because no matter how much the spirit is willing, the flesh was weak; and that decision was made long after I had been saved.

We can choose this day whom we will serve; the Lord Jesus Christ or something else in His name, BUT there is no power in that decision when I trust Jesus Christ to help me to do it; to serve Him by testifying of the Son in seeking His glory and nothing else in His name for that is the only way I can honor & glorify the Father and that is by honoring & glorifying the Son which I am led by the Spirit to do because the Holy Spirit has been sent to do the very same thing through us.

John 5:22 For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son: 23 That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.

John 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: 27 And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.

John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.14 He shall glorify me:

1 Corinthians 1:9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. 10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.

1 Corinthians 2:2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

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Sorry I opened up this can of worms but sometimes we need to consider things that are not comfortable for us to consider. I am not condemning anyone. That is already done according to the scripture, if we can understand them. I understand in a measure. Does anyone understand better? That is God's call.

I cannot change what I believe to make someone else comfortable. There is no free gift for anyone. Someone had to open the Way and someone has to choose to walk into that open Way. Whether we like it or not, as I believe it, those unable to choose for themselves those responsible for them make the choice for them.

Because we have decided that something is good does not make it so any more than because we have decided that something is bad makes it so.

"Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!" Isaiah 5:20

Only God, the only One who is good, can judge exactly what is and what is not good.

"I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase." I Cor 3:6-7

I will leave this for now.
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Trusting the Lord is something we CAN do and surrendering everything to Him.
He takes our burdens, we are not meant to add to them. If we do our bit i,e simply trust in Him, He will do the rest.

For those of us who werent born or raised in a christian family yes to a certain extent our parents made a choice for us and when we are children they are responsible for us. But God can reach out to children despite their parents ill choices.

For those that were raised in christian families you have been blessed, dont throw away that precious heritage. Yes sone parents can go overboard religious on their children, and thats not always a good thing, but in many ways its better than being left in the dark which is the fate of many neglected and abandoned children, and they have a more difficult road to travel.
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Trusting the Lord is something we CAN do and surrendering everything to Him.
He takes our burdens, we are not meant to add to them. If we do our bit i,e simply trust in Him, He will do the rest.

For those of us who werent born or raised in a christian family yes to a certain extent our parents made a choice for us and when we are children they are responsible for us. But God can reach out to children despite their parents ill choices.

For those that were raised in christian families you have been blessed, dont throw away that precious heritage. Yes sone parents can go overboard religious on their children, and thats not always a good thing, but in many ways its better than being left in the dark which is the fate of many neglected and abandoned children, and they have a more difficult road to travel.

I was brought up in a religion that made me aware of God, but was in error.
They taught freedom, but were still in bondage to sin.
God knows how to get the "message" to those who earnestly seek Him...Thanks be to God!

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