So, what about the person in deepest, darkest, downtown Dallas who has never heard? He (or she) has no excuse because God revealed Himself to every person through creation. And if he (or she) really wants to know the God of creation, God can (and, in my opinion, will) do whatever He needs to do to bring the message to that person, sometimes doing so very creatively. A flat tire on the freeway will not stop the process.
By no means am I saying we should sit back and do nothing to reach a lost world under the umbrella of “trusting God” to get the message out. He usually uses people to tell the good news, and I should be one of them he uses. Jesus commands us to “go” (Matt. 28:19-20). But the eternal destiny of that other person does not ultimately rest on my faithfulness, but on God’s. If I am not obedient, He can work around my disobedience to accomplish His purposes to get the message out. I, however, would much rather be used by Him than be a disobedient someone God must “work around”!
What about those unable to believe because they don’t have the mental capacity to understand and respond to the gospel? What about babies or the mentally challenged? That will have to wait for a future post. Before I tackle that one, though, I want to write about something else. Stephen Hawking this week said “I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.” Is the afterlife “a fairy story”? Because if it is, none of this matters.