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What About Those Who Have Never Heard the Gospel?

As missionary among the un-reached Antanala-people of Madagascar, I have heard this question a million times… Well, maybe not a million but many times. Mostly these questions are hidden in presuppositions. Among Christians some think that nobody will be saved, except those who’ve heard and believed the Gospel. While others, say that there are people who will be saved, even if they never heard about Jesus. In this series we are going to see what the Bible has to say about these questions.

What About Those Who Have Never Heard the Gospel?

Part 4 – The Hard Questions

Introduction

This is part 4 of this series. Please watch the first three parts first to better understand this one. You’ll find the links in the description of this video.

So, what actually will happen to those who never heard the Gospel? Where do they go when they die?

In the first part we have found out that actually every single person on this earth deserves to be punished for his or her sin. That is the only just and honest position God can take. But we concluded also that this is not the end of the story. In part 2 we discovered that every human can have a certain knowledge of God through nature and also through their own conscience. With the knowledge of the first two part we discussed two persons from Old Testament times, Abraham and Rahab. These two got saved through their faith in God.

The whole driving force behind the saving faith of these Old Testament people seem to be that they first recognised God through general revelation. Of Abraham, we know for sure that God also intervened and talked to him, thus giving him a special revelation or in a fancy word, theophany. Looking at Rahab’s conversion is a bit harder to determine what it was that put her on the right track. Was it that she already knew that there is a God of heaven and earth? Was it because she heard the stories about the interaction between Israel and God? In any case, she turned her whole life towards God, leaving behind a depraved and corrupt culture.

Gloomy

But now I think we need to address the elephant in the room because I can hear the question al ready. “Can we trust that many more will come to a saving faith through general revelation only?” And my short answer would be ‘no’. That’s a gloomy answer, I know, so I will explain it a bit.

Looking around I see many who really understand that nature didn’t come into being by chance. Many will even acknowledge that their moral compass is there to help them to choose between good and bad. But how many… No wait, let me ask this question to you:

How many people do you know who didn’t know anything except nature and their conscience and called out to God, saying: “O higher being! I want to get to know you”. You know, people, who grew up in a culture where they worship the ancestors but then, looking around, they realise that they are involved in rituals that are just gross and immoral. All of a sudden they look at the cow horn with magical powder, and they recognise that it is just that, a cow’s horn with some yucky stuff inside. And when they realise this, they, like Rahab, leave everything behind to try, and find the Creator.

No, this does not happen often. I can’t say never, because I don’t know every person that has lived, or lives present day. But I do know an awful lot of people, but not one of them fits the description. The opposite is easier to find. People who know that there must be an ultimate God, and they know that what they are doing is wrong. They keep on doing it anyway, until they do not hear their own conscience any more. Most of us are like that. Even the most diligent Christian decides, so now and then, to refuse to listen to that inner-voice. This is totally inline with the Biblical teaching. Nobody really seeks God.

Romans 3:11

“There is none that understandeth, There is none that seeketh after God. ”

So again, the times we see people turn and seeking God, because they recognise His hand in nature and their conscience, are very rare. Sure, they include possible examples in the Bible, like Rahab. But mostly people need something extra.

Only through Jesus

Even though the saved people might not have known anything about the work Jesus did, or would do in the future, when you talk about Old Testament cases, they are still saved through His work.

Acts 4:12

“Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

When Abraham trusted God for his salvation, he trusted the right person. It was God who became flesh and was born here on earth to work salvation for all. Trusting God, meant that he ultimately trusted Jesus, even without him knowing it.

I believe it is safe to say that the whole Old Testament pointed to Jesus. The laws, the sacrificial ceremonies, yes, even the story in which Abraham has to offer his son Isaac. It all became fulfilled in the work of Christ.

Hebrews 11:1, 13

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

“These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them […]”

The faith obtained by people who do not know the Gospel is looking forward. All examples in Hebrews 11 demonstrate a faith and a trust that God would save them. They probably didn’t have a clue that it would be through Jesus, but they were sure God would do it one way or another.

A common misconception about the Old Testament way of salvation is that Jews were saved by keeping the Law. But we know from Scripture that that is not true. Galatians 3:11 says, “But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.” Paul is quoting Habakkuk 2:4—salvation by faith, apart from the Law was an Old Testament principle.

How little can someone know and still be saved?

Good, let us dive in some difficult questions. Have you ever wondered how little one can know and still be saved? Of course, you have never had this questions, I know! But there are others who do. You see, general revelation is what we have! It is this revelation which prepares us for more! We should stop asking how little can someone know and still be saved? How about those who live somewhere in the middle of the rainforests? They don’t know anything about the God of the Bible. How much faith do they have to show to be saved? This is just a silly question and can not be answered properly. God will judge accordingly. He knows the heart, he knows the intentions of every human being. What do we know!?

It is like asking me when is it okay to divorce you husband or wife. I can give you some Biblical texts that seem to tell you when it is fine to do so. But honestly, the situation is almost never that simple. True, there are exceptions but most of them are rare, and I am not going to tell you in this video when it is permitted. Likewise, I can not answer the question of how little one can know and still be saved. I am absolutely positive that people get saved while knowing almost nothing, but again, these cases are rare.

What I do know is that the majority of people who got saved did receive some kind of extra or special information. You might want to read Hebrews 11 about the people of faith. Reading through those witnesses you’ll see that all of them received extra information. Like I said, Rahab received information about the great deeds of the God of Israel.

Some seem to be thinking something like: “Well, they don’t know anything, maybe they are saved…” But this is mixing up faith with ignorance. Faith is required to be saved not ignorance.

Evangelism

That brings me to the next thing. Did you ever heard someone say that we don’t really have to evangelise or send out missionaries. I mean, maybe they get saved anyway, right? They’ve got general revelation! Maybe you’ve never heard this line of reasoning before, but I sure did! Let me shock you a little more… it were mostly Christians who were wondering about this idea!

My full answer is simple: Not sending evangelists or missionaries is unbiblical, and suggesting such idea shouldn’t even be taken seriously within the Christian church. The Lord clearly says that we should go out and share the Gospel. Numerous testimonies of individuals and even whole tribes who all had general revelation. They neglected it and worshipped false gods, nature itself or anything else, until the Gospel reached them, and they repented and put their trust in Jesus. If you like to see such a story, you really should watch the documentary about the Mouk Tribe:

https://odysee.com/@jurgenenkatja:3/ee-taow-the-mouk-story:b

Isaiah 52:7

“How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!”

Damage

How about the idea that you can actually do harm to someone’s search for God. I have been in hospital for a knee operation. While I was lying in my bed I talked with a lady at the opposite side of the dorm. It was great! She wanted to know all about Jesus.

Now this dorm had six or eight beds, I can’t remember. In one of them was another lady. She didn’t say anything, she was just lying there reading a book. Or so I thought. Weeks later, an older sister in church came to me. She said that she heard that I was in hospital at the same time as her friend. She knew it was me because her friend told her about me. It was a terrible experience for her friend. I was talking about that Jesus guy all the time. No, it wasn’t the lady I talked with. It was the lady with the book! The older sister told me that I shouldn’t talk too much about Jesus because people, like her friend, are being put off by it. She said that her friend was just almost ‘there’. God was working on her, and she wanted to answer God’s call. What my older sister actually implied was that my preaching damaged this lady’s hunger for the Gospel, even after receiving special attention from God.

But, is this valid? Can it be that, when someone, who already understands general revelation, and then receives some kind of special revelation—let’s say a vision of God or a special dream which they received from God—and you come and tell them about Christ, and they respond negatively. “Oh no, He is nothing like I imagined, I don’t want Him!”

I believe, when they really received a special revelation, this doesn’t happen.

John 6:45

“It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. ”

In other words, if you really learned about God… And I mean really learned, not that wishy-washy DIY religion preached by some wannabe preachers. No, when someone really got to know God the Father, he or she WANTS to know Jesus. Actually, Jesus uses His presence in Jerusalem to see whether the Jews really listened to the prophets or not. If they did, if they actually really listened to the things they have been taught about God the Father, they would have accepted Him.

John 5:46‭-‬47

“For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words? ”

So, hearing the Gospel is wholesome to someone who learned about God. If someone has had the privileged to learn about God the Father, like the Israelites did, they wouldn’t have any problem accepting Christ.

However, while I’m saying this, I recall the anecdote I gave in part three about the lady who got healed but still refused to follow Christ. Now, this is a different situation. That lady received special attention directly from the healing hands of Jesus. She understood who God was and what Jesus had done for us. Still, she didn’t want to give up her life. This isn’t about not understanding any more. No, this specific situation shows us that there are also people who willingly ignore the Gospel. They will reject Christ no matter what.

Other Religions

Okay, we’ve got that cleared up, but what about the earnest Muslim, Buddhist, or Hare Krishna? They grew up in their religion, and they might have sincerely searched for God, right? You might think so, but I believe this to be false. Deep down all other religions are rejecting God the Father. I could give examples for many different religions out there, but I’ll suffice by saying that none of them actually worships a personal, and loving God. It is all about, this far away god or energy that ultimately isn’t concerned with his, her, or it’s creation.

It is amazing that we have testimonies from those who started to question their religion. The looked around, they looked at the idols, they thought about their mantras, and they started to realise that the God of creation cannot be found in any of these. And how can He? He created everything but He Himself is outside this creation and not created but eternal. It is the moment that they start to ask the hard questions. Those questions that aren’t really appreciated by the religious leaders because they don’t know the answers and rather keep the status quo.

Often you hear that they then turn secretly to the evangelist or missionary in the neighbourhood, and after a while they’ll accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This is what we see and hear throughout the ages.

I began to work on translating Bible stories back in 2017. Somewhere in February 2018 I started to visit a village where I shared these freshly translated Bible stories. People listened and were very curious since they had not heard these stories yet, especially not in their heart-language. Anyway, around August 2018, a young couple from outside, moved into this village. They were sent by their church to plant a new church. Within no time, they could start—very surprised that some people were readily accepting the Gospel. The point I try to make is that these new believers already searched for God. Then I came and explained to them who God is and about His plan to save us. I got as far as explaining to them that He promised to send Jesus as a sacrifice for all. They were eager to hear about it. My brother and sister move in and explained exactly that and: Boom!

Back then, we didn’t know each other yet. They didn’t know what I had done or preached, and I didn’t know who they were. They are way younger than I am, but we have become very good friends.

If someone in a different culture and religion sincerely seeks God, they will get the chance to meet Him. This is what the Bible teaches and this is the experience of many missionaries throughout the world.

Last things to consider

I guess this episode is going to be the longest of all four, but that’s because this episode is the most important one! So, what actually happens to those who have never heard the Gospel. The answer seems to be that there might be some that start the look for the real God. These people will get answers because God promised that they would find Him, and He is not far. However, scripture also teaches that many, not to say most, are not interested in finding Him. They are content with their lifestyle. They push away the gnawing feeling that they are doing thing wrong. Likewise, they willingly ignore all signs out there that tell them that there is a God, a creator of everything.

This means that many will be lost for eternity. No matter how hard they try to please the ancestors, or how diligently they try to keep the commandments of their religion, and no matter how big their investment is in society. No matter how many grannies they help to cross the street and how much money they give to humanitarian organisations. People can not save themselves by keeping the law, people can only be saved by faith. And not just that kind of faith which is required in their own religious groups. No, faith in the Creator of the heaven and the earth. The One who gave them life in the first place, who put the stars in the heaven as a sign of His existence.

This is why, throughout the ages, the Church has sent out missionaries. This is why evangelists try to grab every opportunity to tell others about Christ. Christians have been called to love their neighbours as themselves. It is this love that should urge us to do everything in our power to teach the world that there is a Saviour! That they can be saved! And that God can be found!

To pounder on

Okay, let’s take a look at one last passage in the Bible. I have already mentioned this passage in episode one. Let’s go to Matthew 11:21,23

“Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes […]”

“And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.”

I read this, and I understand Jesus’ words to mean that if He actually really came to Tyre, Sidon, and Sodom. If He had performed all His deeds—miracles, resurrection, exorcisms, and the sermons—they would have repented.

If this is true—and I believe it is—does this than mean that there might be people who would have been saved if they heard the Gospel? Would they’ve been saved for eternity if someone had come to them and preached the Gospel? Can it be that, because no one came to them, they stayed in their sin and got condemned accordingly?

I am afraid that this passage strongly implies this. I think that this is a theme throughout the whole Bible. People who might have been saved if they’ve heard just a little more. If the great deeds were performed among them, they would have repented. This is frightening to me!

There are those, who say that if they don’t tell their neighbour about Christ, God would definitely send someone else to do it. Like, if someone is destined to be saved, God will do anything to make that happen. This argument than relieves them from all their worries. Evangelism has always be high on my agenda. I’ve always tried to mobilise others to share the Gospel. But many used this excuse. “Nah, I am just not an evangelist like you”; “I am not that talkative”; “I don’t know enough to teach others.” And then they come with this final knock-out argument, which is always trotted out when they ran out of good excuses.

But if this argument holds, then there would be no need to send out missionaries, church planters, evangelists. In that case we shouldn’t be worried about the un-reached at all, and I wouldn’t have to make this video in the first place.

End

Anyway, I could go on for a few more hours, but I think this is a good time to stop. I’ll give you one last text to think about. I read the text from the Amplified Version. You can look it up in any other version you like. This version gives a description of the text and I believe it does a good job with this specific one.

2 Timothy 4:1-2

“I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word [as an official messenger]; be ready when the time is right and even when it is not [keep your sense of urgency, whether the opportunity seems favourable or unfavourable, whether convenient or inconvenient, whether welcome or unwelcome]; correct [those who err in doctrine or behaviour], warn [those who sin], exhort and encourage [those who are growing toward spiritual maturity], with inexhaustible patience and [faithful] teaching.”

This is a huge topic! And I hope I’ve tackled it enough to give you a more detailed idea. I very much appreciate your input in the comments.

As always, my videos can also be watched on Bitchute and YouTube, but I am mostly active on Odysee. So, if you want to comment on this video, I would suggest doing so on Odysee. But, to comment you’ll need an account and if you use my invitation we both get some LBC for free.

Along with the invitation, I’ll put the link to an essay with the title Why Mission MattersSeen From a Secular Viewpoint in the description of this video. Also, you’ll find ways to support me. Some of you already did! And I would like to thank you big time for that. It is a huge encouragement to know that you appreciate my work.

Thank you for watching, and I wish you God’s blessing.

And we’ll see each other in the next one!



THE MOUK STORY:

👉 Complete version

👉 Short version

👉 Short version (Dutch voice-over)



Part 1 – Basic Truths

Part 2 – What is known to mankind?

Part 3 – Old Testament

Part 4 – The hard questions

What About Those Who Have Never Heard the Gospel?

Part 3 – Old Testament

Introduction

This is part 3 of this series. Please watch part one and two first because we build on those two videos in this part. You’ll find the links in the description of this video.

As said, I work as missionary in the middle of nowhere on Madagascar, and I have heard this question many times: What will happen to those who never heard the Gospel? Where do they go when they die?

In the first part we have found out that actually every single person on this earth deserves to be punished for his or her sin. That is the only just and honest position God can take. But we concluded also that this is not the end of the story. In part 2 we discovered that every human can have a certain knowledge of God through nature and also through their own conscience.

Let’s do something risky. Let’s talk about some people from Old Testament times who apparently got saved.

Abraham

The first one that comes to my mind is Abraham. Romans 4 is pressing the idea that Abraham was truly saved, not because of his works but because of faith.

“What does Scripture say? ‘Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.’ Now to the one who works, wages are not credited as a gift but as an obligation. However, to the one who does not work but trusts God who justifies the ungodly, their faith is credited as righteousness.”

Abraham knew close to nothing about God’s plan of sending Jesus. He didn’t even know about the laws as given to Moses. How on earth could Abraham be saved? His faith, how incomplete you might believe it was, has saved him. He trusted God for his justification. Paul wasn’t just a blabbering boob…I’ve got that from dr. Seuss’ Horton hears a who. No he actually quotes Genesis 15:6 “Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.”

So, what did Abraham believe? Obviously he knew that God was the one who created everything. He could have found that out through nature, but God granted him, what we call in theology ‘special revelation’. God came to him in a supernatural way. Later we also see this in Moses’ life, where God appears to him in the burning bush. That was what we call a theophany, which comes from the old Greek. Theos meaning ‘God’, and phaneia which mean ‘appearance’. But, some would say it was more like an epiphany. An epiphany is a more generic happening and means something like ‘manifestation from above,’ because God Himself was not seen. However, an epiphany can also be a manifestation of a spirit or whatever. Being a Christian, I use the word theophany if and only if we are talking about the manifestation of God (with capital G) and not just about the manifestation of any deity.

All humans are granted, what we call ‘general revelation’. That is revelation through nature and conscience as explained in part 2 of this series. But Abraham was one of lucky people who received special revelation!

Actually, this still happens today you know. Maybe not so much in free countries, where we can get Bible and listen to podcasts. No, these special revelations are much more common in closed countries. Stories of Muslims who converted to Christianity because Issa, that is Jesus, appeared to them. That must be absolutely awesome don’t you think?

Anyway, Abraham received the promise of having a lot of offspring, God was going to multiply his seed. We now know that this actually directed to Jesus because Jesus is the ultimate seed of Abraham. But Abraham did not now this, did he? However, he believed God, and he obeyed Him, and God credited it to him as righteousness.

Rahab

And what about this woman called Rahab? This story still amazes me big time! Here come the people of Israel. They are conquering the promised land. Jericho was the most important Canaanite fortress city in the Jordan Valley. It was a stronghold directly in the path of the advancing Israelites. The king of Jericho heard that two Israelite spies were within his city and ordered them to be brought out to him. Rahab protected them by hiding them on her roof.

Rahab told the spies that the people of Jericho were terrified of the Israelites ever since God defeated the Egyptian army, which happened about 40 years earlier. The city was completely destroyed, and everybody was killed. But Rahab and her family were spared.

Now comes the amazing part of this story. Rahab, who was a young Canaanite prostitute, married Salmon, an Israelite from the tribe of Judah. Her son was Boaz, the husband of Ruth. Joseph, the legal father of Jesus, is her direct descendant!

Rahab wasn’t in a great position to get to know the God of Israel. She grew up and lived in a corrupt, depraved, pagan culture. However, she heard the stories of the miraculous escape from Egypt, the crossing of the Red Sea. She heard about the things that happened to Israel in the wilderness, and their recent triumph over the Amorites. She had learned enough to come to the correct, saving conclusion in Joshua 2:11 “When we heard of it, our hearts sank and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.” It changed her heart. And this faith—together with the actions coming forth out of this faith—that saved her and her family.

Saving Faith

Hebrews 11:31 clearly states that Rahab was saved. Why? Because of her faith in “God in heaven above and on the earth below”. Christians are saved through faith in Jesus Christ. Ephesians 2:8 says

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God”.

But we also need to recognise that both Rahab and Abraham exemplified their faith by action. Abraham had to travel away from his country to an unknown place, and Rahab had to put the scarlet cord out of the window. Likewise, we as Christian have accepted Jesus as our saviour and according to James that faith must become visible through our lifestyle, our actions.

James 2:14,17

“What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? […] faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.”

Both Abraham’s and Rahab’s faith enabled them to turn away from their culture, their people, and their religion and to the Lord. Commitment to a true faith in God may require setting priorities that are contrary to those of the world, as we are call upon to do in Romans 12:2

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

General and Special Revelation

I just had to talk about these amazing stories during one of our meals. Of course, we read the Bible as a family, but besides that we also quite often discuss Biblical topics at the table, which it pretty cool. I said that Rahab was saved through faith. Now, one of the children said that she had faith after she received a revelation. But the Bible doesn’t say that about her. She heard about the God of Israel and apparently she used her brains. She figured out that He is the God of heaven and earth and that besides Him there is no other. I wouldn’t call that ‘special revelation’ in the sense that God directly revealed something to her. Maybe I am missing something here, if so you can let me know in the comment section.

In contrary, when we look at Abraham’s life we do see that he clearly received special revelation. God directly spoke to him and he obeyed.

Is general revelation, nature and conscience, enough for people to come to a saving faith in God? It might be, and I think the story of Rahab comes close. But probably most need something extra to come to the same conclusion as Rahab. But then again, can it be that special revelation also includes hearing the message, not directly from God, but through human sources? If that is so, then the missionary among the un-reached, the evangelist in the streets, and in Rahab’s story, the people telling the miraculous stories of the God of Israel, can all be counted for special revelation in one way or another.

Actually, when I think about it, and I might be wrong, but I think general revelation is probably not enough. But it is enough to make people ready for special revelation. The fact that I do not have to waste my time on explaining people here that God exists and that He is mighty, can be subscribed to, in my opinion, general revelation.

Seeking God

Okay, I am going to wrap this part up. I would like to go to Act 17:26-27

“From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us.”

Paul is preaching to the Greek people. What is he telling them? All humans are decedents from Adam and God wants to be found! And then, contrary to atheistic beliefs, Paul says that God is not far and can be found! You see, many want you to believe that God didn’t leave any evidence for us to find Him.

Now, this argument isn’t new. Listen to this:

2 Peter 3:3-6

“Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, ‘Where is this “coming” he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.’ But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed.”

This last part talks about the great flood. How can people forget what happened in the past during the flood? Simple, let’s try to explain away all geological features of the earth. Wrinkled mountains? Very sharp boundaries in between earth layers? Mass graves with dinosaur bones? Nahh, that cannot be caused by a major worldwide disaster. No, Let’s stick a label with billions of years on those features and voila! We just reasoned God out of the picture.

God wants to be found, and He is not far. The only thing keeping people is their own reluctance to actually find Him. We don’t want Him in the equation.

I once talked with a lady, who worked in a supermarket, who said she wanted to find out who God was. So, the weeks that followed I got the change to tell her all about the Gospel. After some weeks she started a job somewhere else. A year later I met her again. We Talked a bit, and she had an amazing story. She suffered a very painful knee injury, and it couldn’t be helped by the doctor. One day she went to watch her son playing soccer. Next to her sad a man. All of a sudden this man, a total stranger, turned to her and said that the Lord told him about her knee. She was shocked! Whether he could pray for her. She agreed and he prayed out loud. The lady felt embarrassed but she let him do his thing anyway. It was a simple prayer. Something in the line of “Lord Jesus, your are the great healer. Please heal her leg”. Next day her knee was completely healed. The doctor did not have an answer. But she knew, it was that prayer of this man, who prayed so full of trust in the Lord Jesus. I was so happy for her! I asked whether she needed more proof than that. “No,” she said. “I know God is real. I also believe that Jesus died and rose again.” On which I asked her whether she started following Him already… “No”, she said, “I am not going to give up my life.”

God can be found, but many of us don’t really want Him. Faith in the Old Testament did not mean that the person knew all about God’s plans for the future. They decided to earnestly seek God and put their trust in Him.

Conclusion so far

So, let me summarise this in some basic truths again.

  1. Number one is that God wants to save all people. This is universal. He gave His only-begotten Son so that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.
  2. Number two, people can respond to general revelation. The nature around us and our conscience is enough to get someone to humble him or herself and really seek God.
  3. Number three, should than be that God will respond to those who really seek Him.

“Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord […]”

Jeremiah 29:12-14

End

Okay, I’ll have to stop now, else the video will be way too long. I really love this topic as it gives me a lot of new insights as well. But it is a huge topic! I read some comments from you that suggest that there are different opinions out there. My videos seem to draw in angry people as well. Well, I am not sure whether they are really angry, but they do sound angry. But, be that as it may, I would like to ask you to mind your language. Other than that, I very much appreciate your input in the comments.

My videos can also be watched on Bitchute and YouTube, but I am mostly active on Odysee. So, if you want to comment on this video, I would suggest doing so on Odysee. But, to comment you’ll need an account and if you use my invitation we both get some LBC for free.

Along with the invitation, I’ll put the link to an essay with the title Why Mission MattersSeen From a Secular Viewpoint in the description of this video. Also, you’ll find ways to support me. Some of you already did! And I would like to thank you big time for that. It is a huge encouragement to know that you appreciate my work.

Thank you for watching, and I wish you God’s blessing.

We’ll see each other in the next one!



Part 1 – Basic Truths

Part 2 – What is known to mankind?

Part 3 – Old Testament

What About Those Who Have Never Heard the Gospel?

Part 2 – What is known to mankind?

Introduction

This is part 2 of this series. Please watch part one first because there we set out some basic truths on which we build on in this part.

As said, I work as missionary in the middle of nowhere on Madagascar, and I have heard this question many times: What will happen to those who never heard the Gospel? Where do they go when they die?

In the first part, we have found out that actually every single person on this earth deserves to be punished for his or her sin. That is the only just and honest position God can take. But we concluded also that this is not the end of the story. Let’s dive in a little deeper, shall we.

What is known to mankind?

Nature

It might be good to examine what we, as humans, actually do know. You see, there are at least two things all people can know about God. Let me take you to the first thing. Let’s read Romans 1:19-20

“…because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse…”

So by just looking around us, we should know there is a God! I don’t care how highly educated you are, how much you think to know about biology. It should be abundantly clear that the world with all it’s living creatures has a creator. And really, the whole mumble-jumble about evolution isn’t even discussed among most un-reached people groups so the first thing they can see, the first thing they realise, is the fact that there most be a creator.

In the Netherlands, before you want to share the Gospel, I first have to explain that there is a God. That is not the case, where we live now. People are already aware of that, just by looking around. And since I like anecdotes, I’ll give you one to think about:

My Malagasy friend, who is an electrician in the capital, ones asked me what people in my country believe. I told him that many believe in Jesus. “All of them?” He asked. “No,” I said. Actually, I wanted to avoid talking about atheism and the like. But my friend persisted and I gave in. Many believe that there is no God, and they believe that everything came into being by pure chance.

He was quiet for a moment. Then he asked me a new question. “Do the Dutch go to school?” Yes, almost all go to school. I immediately knew where he was going. “Do many of them go to universities?” Again, yes, we have many high educated people in Holland. This was difficult to grasp for my friend. He said. “How can it be that people so smart as the Dutch still believe that there is no God. How on earth can they believe that all we see came about out of nothing?”

Okay, I hope this anecdote made something clear.

Conscience

Let’s move on to the second thing people can know. Let’s read Romans 2:14-16

“For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the meanwhile accusing or else excusing one another; in the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.”

And whatta you know! Wherever you ask people whether murder is wrong, they would almost always say yes. Morality is universal. I admit that there are things in this world going on that undermine good morality. Abortion is such an example. But deep inside the human brain there is this knowledge of right and wrong. Their conscience will either accuse them or excusing them for the things they say and do. The Bible teaches us that God will judge men according to their secrets. So, when someone who never heard the Gospel appears before God, they can not say that they never knew anything about God’s standard. Everyone knows right from wrong! Maybe they don’t know the nitty-gritty of God’s laws, but the basic stuff is there. In the end, men will be judged by their own conscience.

What do we know now?

So, what do we know now? Well, first of all we can dismiss the idea that somehow God isn’t fair towards the people who’ve never heard the Gospel. Fair would mean that every single man and woman receives punishment. Nobody is without sin, and that’s why everyone falls short big time. Nobody is sent to hell because God arbitrarily chooses to do so. No, we end up separated from God because of our own misbehaviour, our own wrongdoings.

Secondly, we also know that nobody is without an excuse. Looking around and being honest, we all have to recognise that there is a God. I admit that this doesn’t perse means that we should recognise Him as the God of the Bible, but at least we know that there is a higher Being. Also, and this is the third point, it is our own conscience that accuses us or excuses us. We all have this build in compass that tells us that what we are doing is right or wrong.

Move on

From this point on—justice is that we are all condemned and everyone is aware that there is a God, and every human is aware of morality—we can try to find out how God is dealing with this issue of people, who have never heard about the saving grace of the Gospel. However! I’ll save that for the next part of this series.

Do take a look in the description of this video. I’ll put the link to an essay with the title Why Mission Matters – Seen From a Secular Viewpoint in there. Also, you’ll find ways to support me and an invitation to Odysee.com. My videos can also be watched on Bitchute and YouTube, but I am mostly active on Odysee. So, if you want to comment on this video, I would suggest doing so on Odysee. But, to comment you’ll need an account and if you use my invitation we both get some LBC for free.

Thank you for watching, and I wish you God’s blessing for the rest of your day… or week.

We’ll see each other in the next one!


Part 1 – Basic Truths

Part 2 – What is known to mankind?

What About Those Who Have Never Heard the Gospel?

Part 1 – Basic Truths

As missionary among the un-reached Antanala-people of Madagascar, I have heard this question a million times… Well, maybe not a million but many times. Mostly these questions are hidden in presuppositions. Among Christians some think that nobody will be saved, except those who’ve heard and believed the Gospel. While others, say that there are people who will be saved, even if they never heard about Jesus.

Then, there is this group that actually think that I am a big party pooper. They say that I should have left these people alone. Why? Well, among some unbelievers there is this idea that the Gospel spoils the native culture. But really, I am not very worried about this opinion. I already answered this criticism in an essay. You’ll find the link in the description of this video. No, the biggest concern for me is that some Christians tend to think that the un-reached are better off without ever hearing the Gospel. Because, they say, hearing the Gospel amounts to their damnation.

So, the big question here is: What will happen to those who never heard the Gospel? Where do they go when they die?

Basic Truths

Okay, what I am going to do is trying to tackle all the different issues one by one. It would be easy to say this are that issue is wrong, but I like to try, and put them in truth statements. Okay, that’s what we are going to do in this first part. Let’s just name three basic truths and expound them a little.

Truth number 1. People are lost for eternity not because they did not hear the Gospel, but because of their own sin.

You might think so, but it is just not what the Bible teaches. No, people go to hell because of their own sin, their faulty behaviour. What does Romans 3:23 say? “All have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God”

The Bible clearly says that God’s wrath is upon us because of our sin. Yes, some would say that the only sin that brings us to hell, is the sin of unbelief. In other words: Unbelief is the only punishable sin. But, if that is true, we couldn’t say that rape, plundering, hatred etcetera is bad. No, let’s get this straight. All sin, including the sin of unbelief, is punishable by death. All sin lead to the eternal separation of God. Why? I’ll give a little analogy, which I sometimes tell the people in the villages I visit. In these villages they have elders which they call ‘king’. The king is the important person when it comes to traditional life.

Now I tell the people that the king wants to give a huge party. So he starts to clean his house single-handedly (which is really weird to suggest in these villages. The king would never do that himself). Anyway, it takes him a lot of time and effort to prepare his house, but in the end, the house is sparkling clean. Now the king sends his son and helpers out to invite people. Everybody is welcome. From the high government official to the low and smelly shepherds. There is this one requirement though. The king wants them to be clean. So before they can enter the party, he sends his son again. This time with clean water, a towel, and beautiful white clothes. The son willingly starts to help everybody to become clean and dressed up for the party. Now, the party can really begin. No smelly business in the house. No dirty hands touching the food. Wonderful! But hold on! Here comes a man who is rather insulted by the whole affair. How dare the king, to look at him as being filthy! How dare the king to offer him clean clothes! This man wants to come in on his own terms. Alas! This will not happen. He would spoil the cleanliness of the company and of the house of the king himself.

When we talk about filth we’re not only talking about ‘big’ sins. The filth and smelliness in the analogy narrates about all sin. What to think of love. Not loving is pretty problematic, to say it mildly. Love is the biggest commandment. Love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and your neighbour as yourself. Most of us are very selective when it comes to love, and we don’t consider it to be such a big deal… Well, apparently God looks at it differently. You could say that ‘love’ is His thing… And we decided it not to be important? Thinking like that leads to damnation because not loving makes us fall short big time.

I could go on and name all sort of sins, but you can look them up yourself. The truth is that before people even hear about salvation through Christ, they already fall short of the glory of God. The wrath of God is upon us because of sin. This wrath stays upon us because of unbelief. We cannot come in on our own terms. This is a very important difference to know and to remember while dealing with our actual question.

The fact of the matter is that people don’t go to hell because of God. We are to blame ourselves. Let me give you another analogy which I heard from a very smart man called Mike Winger, who has his own YouTube channel.

Imagen you sitting in a huge house, secretly playing with matches and paper. Although people told you not to do it because it is dangerous you hid away in the attic and tried it anyway. Oh what fun! You’ve got a nice fire going. But now the fire gets out of control and spreads rapidly. It blocks the only way out, you’re trapped. Good thing the fire department is nearby. Within minutes, they arrive and raise a ladder to the roof. They smash a big hole in the roof to reach you. The man on the ladder shouts at you: “Hurry! This is the only way out. Come I’ll help you.” But hold on! You look at this firefighter and say: “I am really offended by the idea that the ‘only’ way out of this fire is down your ladder! It is very rude to even suggest that.” And so you burn to death and die. Probably feeling very justified about your position. You see, if the firefighter had caused the fire, you would have a point. But it was you yourself who caused the fire in the first place.

This is what’s really going on. We caused the wrath ourselves, through our sin, through our own evil deeds. So we should not blame God for the situation we’re in.

Truth number 2. Condemnation increases when one hears the Gospel but rejects it.

Jesus was pretty clear about this when he spoke to the cities in Matthew 11:20-22

“Then began he to upbraid the cities wherein most of his mighty works were done, because they repented not:
Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you.”

So yes, the one who never heard the Gospel is better off than the one who heard it but rejected it. However, never hearing it does not cause someone to be lost as I said earlier.

Truth number 3. God is honest and just.

Sometimes you hear people ask whether it is honest of God to let some people go lost for eternity. Actually I’ve come across people who say this all the time. I normally turn the question around, and I ask them whether they think God should intervene in this world to make an end to all misery. Mostly they answer that with a ‘yes’. I continue. So do you think that God should punish evildoers. Again, ‘yes’. You see where I am going? In the end they start to realise that nobody is perfect and if God would only punish some of us—and thus not cleaning this world from wickedness—we soon enough end up in the same bad situation again. In other words: It would be more honest to let everyone perish.

Or look at it this way. If you have 1000 thieves on trail, would it not be honest to punish all 1000 of them? They are all thieves right? Now, if some are going to be pardoned I actually believe the judge needs to have a very good excuse to rule that way.

As we have said, all have sinned and fall short. Nobody deserves it to be pardoned. God is just and honest when He decides to deal with our sins by punishing us.

The thing is that when we are pardoned, it is not because we deserve it, but it is pure grace. Grace is a gift and cannot be earned. Going back to the question whether God is just, we can conclude that He is. The fact that He offers grace to those who put their trust in His son Jesus Christ doesn’t make Him less just. It makes Him merciful. And mercy cannot be demanded by those who want to receive it, the can only humble themselves and pray to get it.

So the question ‘what about the people who never heard the Gospel’ seems to come forth out of this presupposition that they have the right to be saved, or at least a certain percentage of them have the right to be saved. But in reality, no human being has the right of his or her own to be saved.

End part 1

Oh boy! That’s a little sobering, isn’t it? The conclusion seems to be that people are lost because of their sinful nature and attitude. Their situation worsens when they have knowledge of the Gospel but reject it. Punishing humans for their sins is a just action as nobody has the right to be saved. In this situation we no longer talk about rights, but we should plead for mercy.

No worries! God is merciful and good. So even when this episode is a little depressing, I want you to keep that in mind: God is good and merciful. But more about that in the next part.

Do take a look in the description of this video. I’ll put the link to the aforementioned essay in there. Also, you’ll find ways to support me and an invitation to Odysee.com. My videos can also be watched on Bitchute and YouTube, but I am mostly active on Odysee. So, if you want to comment on the video, I would like to suggest doing so on Odysee. To comment you’ll need an account and if you use my invitation we both get some LBC for free.

Thank you for watching, and I wish you God’s blessing for the rest of your day… or week.

We’ll see each other in the next one!


Part 1 – Basic Truths

Part 2 – What is known to mankind?

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