Saved Since Birth?

The following were posted to a Yahoo! group I belong to. Issues discussed include infant baptism and assurance of salvation, so I’m sure at least the Catholic apologists’ ears will be pricked. 😉

Please respond with comments. I’ll pass them along to the group.

Author: E.Z.
Subject: Saved Since Birth?

OK now how many of us believe that? Is it possible to be saved from birth? Can we know Christ from the womb?

Luke 1:39-45 states that when Mary came to visit Elizabeth (her cousin) as soon as mary walked in the house and gave a greeting the baby inside Elizabeth (John the baptist)jumped and she (Elizabeth) was filled with the Holy Spirit.

Well that would tell me that we can be saved from the womb and we can grow up never having admitted a confession of faith except to God, in the womb!

We need to have faith like the centurion in Luke 7:1-10 all we need to do is believe that God will come and help us and He will! I have run across "christians" that believe the strangest things and they can’t accept that God will come and help us WHENEVER we need Him to.

But back to my origianal question, Can we be saved from birth?

Your answers will help me alot. I think that it is possible! I mean that if John the baptist can be saved from birth then why not us.

Author: A.B
Subject: Re: Saved Since Birth?

You know, there was a preacher at my (Independant Fundamental Baptist) Church, and he told of a time he did some radio preaching. He had a program in the early morning that he usually did live.

Just after one broadcast he went back to his office and the phone rang. A lady on the line asked if he was the minister just on the radio, and he said he was, and she said that they had just moved to the area and they had a six month old baby boy who hadn’t been baptized, and would he baptize him?

The preacher was just about to give his usual pat answer, No we don’t baptize infants. But the Holy Ghost held his tongue and led him down a different response. He said, "If he meets the Bible requirement for baptism, I’ll be very happy to baptize your son." To this the lady replied, "Oh I’m sure he will. He’s such a fine little boy."

"Do you have a Bible handy?" the preacher asked.
"It’s packed in a box right now." she said.
"Well go get it. I’ll wait."

So she went away for a few minutes and came back on the phone. And the preacher took her over to Acts 8, the account of the Ethiopian with Philip the Evangelist. And he came down to v.36b, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? And v.37, And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.

"So that is the Bible requirement for baptism", he said. "What you need to do is go over to your son and ask him if he believes with all his heart that Jesus Christ is the Son of God." To this the lady replied, "I don’t think you understood me minister: he’s only six months old."

"Oh yes, I understood you. But let’s give the little lad the benefit of the doubt. You go over and ask him."

So she went away from the phone and came back a few minutes later. She didn’t say anything, but the preacher could hear her breathing over the phone.

"So, what did he say?" he asked.
"He didn’t say anything. As I told you, he’s only six months old."

Then she said, "I didn’t know that was in the Bible."
"Well now, could I ask you then ma’am, if you died tonight would be 100% sure that you were going to heaven? Or would there be some doubt? Could I show you what the Bible says about that?" And from there he led her to Christ.

Can an infant be saved? I don’t think so. But even if one could, we have no way to verify it. This is one of those things that we trust God on, for they have not reached an age of accountability. The age at which they can go to Sunday School, and hear the Gospel and be saved is quite a long time before the real age of accountability. What that exact age is, I have no idea – I would guess somewhere around 10 or 13. If they’re old enough to go to Sunday School, they’re old enough to go to Calvary.

The point is, four year olds have been well known to grasp the Gospel unto their own salvation. And forty year olds refuse to believe it.

North Valley Baptist Church ( runs 17 busses all over San Jose, picking up children (with parental consent) anywhere they can, to bring them to Sunday School. They bus upwards of 900 children in every Sunday. And in every morning service a group is brought before the main church who have all accepted Jesus Christ as their Saviour, and with signed parental consent, they are all baptized upon their public profession of faith.

A survey taken in England amongst active adult Christians found that more than half were saved before they were 12 years old. Most of the other half were saved in their teenage years. Only a tiny percentage were saved after age 21. So the popular notion, "Wait until he’s 21 and let him decide for himself." is obviously from the devil. The greatest impact on evangelism today is child ministry.

But why child ministry? Because we must all become as little children if we are ever to see the Kingdom of God. Children have not yet been polluted with the false teachings of the world. They have not yet been trained to think that man is god through evolution. But I think a large reason is that while almost every church has some kind of a child ministry for their own members, hardly any are into practical soul-winning. So many well-meaning churches are pro-worldly, and into false bibles and weak preaching, that how could they be soul-winning?

I have been out soul-winning with my church here, and it is just the most amazing experience. Yes, it is cold turkey knocking on doors. "Good evening sir. I’m Bill and this is Andy, and we’re from North Valley Baptist Church …" Almost everybody is polite and courteous. And to the question, "Are you 100% sure that you’ll be going to heaven when you die?" almost everybody says that they have some doubt, or they cannot be sure. And then my soul-winning partner pulls out a little New Testament and starts to take him through the plan of salvation. The first time I went out I saw two people saved. I was out last Tuesday and I saw another man saved.

And if you are saved and you’re not giving the Gospel to those around you, shame on you. None of us are professional evangelists. But I am now convinced that all Christians are to be soul-winners.

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About Funky Dung

Who is Funky Dung? 29-year-old grad student in Intelligent Systems (A.I.) at the University of Pittsburgh. I consider myself to be politically moderate and independent and somewhere between a traditional and neo-traditional Catholic. I was raised Lutheran, spent a number of years as an agnostic, and joined the Catholic Church at the 2000 Easter Vigil. Why Funky Dung? I haven't been asked this question nearly as many times as you or I might expect. Funky Dung is a reference to an obscure Pink Floyd song. On the album Atom Heart Mother, there is a track called Atom Heart Mother Suite. It's broken up into movements, like a symphony, and one of the movements is called Funky Dung. I picked that nickname a long time ago (while I was still in high school I think), shortly after getting an internet connection for the first time. To me it means "cool/neat/groovy/spiffy stuff/crap/shiznit", as in "That's some cool stuff, dude!" Whence Ales Rarus? I used to enjoy making people guess what this means, but I've decided to relent and make it known to all. Ales Rarus is a Latin play on words. "Avis rarus" means "a rare bird" and carries similar meaning to "an odd fellow". "Ales" is another Latin word for bird that carries connotations of omens, signs of the times, and/or augery. If you want to get technical, both "avis" and "ales" are feminine (requiring "rara", but they can be made masculine in poetry (which tends to breaks lots of rules). I decided I'd rather have a masculine name in Latin. ;) Yeah, I'm a nerd. So what? :-P Wherefore blog? It is my intention to "teach in order to lead others to faith" by being always "on the lookout for occasions of announcing Christ by word, either to unbelievers . . . or to the faithful" through the "use of the communications media". I also act knowing that I "have the right and even at times a duty to manifest to the sacred pastors [my] opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church, and [I] have a right to make [my] opinion known to the other Christian faithful, with due regard to the integrity of faith and morals and reverence toward [my and their] pastors, and with consideration for the common good and the dignity of persons." (adapted from CCC 904-907) Statement of Faith I have been baptized and confirmed in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I, therefore, renounce Satan; I renounce all his works; I renounce all his allurements. I hold and profess all that is contained in the Apostles' Creed, the Niceno- Constantinopolitan Creed, and the Athanasian Creed. Having been buried with Christ unto death and raised up with him unto a new life, I promise to live no longer for myself or for that world which is the enemy of God but for him who died for me and rose again, serving God, my heavenly Father, faithfully and unto death in the holy Catholic Church. I am obedient to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. That is, I promote and defend authentic Catholic Teaching and Faith in union with Christ and His Church and in union with the Holy Father, the Bishop of Rome, the Successor of St. Peter. Thanks be unto Thee, O my God, for all Thy infinite goodness, and, especially, for the love Thou hast shown unto me at my Confirmation. I Give Thee thanks that Thou didst then send down Thy Holy Spirit unto my soul with all His gifts and graces. May He take full possession of me for ever. May His divine unction cause my face to shine. May His heavenly wisdom reign in my heart. May His understanding enlighten my darkness. May His counsel guide me. May His knowledge instruct me. May His piety make me fervent. May His divine fear keep me from all evil. Drive from my soul, O Lord, all that may defile it. Give me grace to be Thy faithful soldier, that having fought the good fight of faith, I may be brought to the crown of everlasting life, through the merits of Thy dearly beloved Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen. Behind the Curtain: an Interview With Funky Dung (Thursday, March 03, 2005) I try to avoid most memes that make their way 'round the blogosphere (We really do need a better name, don't we?), but some are worth participating in. Take for instance the "interview game" that's the talk o' the 'sphere. I think it's a great way to get to know the people in neighborhood. Who are the people in your neighborhood? In your neighborhod? In your neigh-bor-hoo-ood...*smack* Sorry, Sesame Street flashback. Anyhow, I saw Jeff "Curt Jester" Miller's answers and figured since he's a regular reader of mine he'd be a good interviewer. Without further ado, here are my answers to his questions. 1. Being that your pseudonym Funky Dung was chosen from a Pink Floyd track on Atom Heart Mother, what is you favorite Pink Floyd song and why? Wow. That's a tuffy. It's hard to pick out a single favorite. Pink Floyd isn't really a band known for singles. They mostly did album rock and my appreciation of them is mostly of a gestalt nature. If I had to pick one, though, it'd be "Comfortably Numb". I get chills up my spine every time I hear it and if it's been long enough since the last time, I get midty-eyed. I really don't know why. That's a rather unsatisfying answer for an interview, so here are the lyrics to a Rush song. It's not their best piece of music, but the lyrics describe me pretty well.

New World Man He's a rebel and a runner He's a signal turning green He's a restless young romantic Wants to run the big machine He's got a problem with his poisons But you know he'll find a cure He's cleaning up his systems To keep his nature pure Learning to match the beat of the old world man Learning to catch the heat of the third world man He's got to make his own mistakes And learn to mend the mess he makes He's old enough to know what's right But young enough not to choose it He's noble enough to win the world But weak enough to lose it --- He's a new world man... He's a radio receiver Tuned to factories and farms He's a writer and arranger And a young boy bearing arms He's got a problem with his power With weapons on patrol He's got to walk a fine line And keep his self-control Trying to save the day for the old world man Trying to pave the way for the third world man He's not concerned with yesterday He knows constant change is here today He's noble enough to know what's right But weak enough not to choose it He's wise enough to win the world But fool enough to lose it --- He's a new world man...
2. What do you consider your most important turning point from agnosticism to the Catholic Church. At some point in '99, I started attending RCIA at the Pittsburgh Oratory. I mostly went to ask a lot of obnoxious Protestant questions. Or at least that's what I told myself. I think deep down I wanted desperately to have faith again. At that point I think I'd decided that if any variety of Christianity had the Truth, the Catholic Church did. Protestantism's wholesale rejection of 1500 years of tradition didn't sit well with me, even as a former Lutheran. During class one week, Sister Bernadette Young (who runs the program) passed out thin booklet called "Handbook for Today's Catholic". One paragraph in that book spoke to me and I nearly cried as I read it.
"A person who is seeking deeper insight into reality may sometimes have doubts, even about God himself. Such doubts do not necessarily indicate lack of faith. They may be just the opposite - a sign of growing faith. Faith is alive and dynamic. It seeks, through grace, to penetrate into the very mystery of God. If a particular doctrine of faith no longer 'makes sense' to a person, the person should go right on seeking. To know what a doctrine says is one thing. To gain insight into its meaning through the gift of understanding is something else. When in doubt, 'Seek and you will find.' The person who seeks y reading, discussing, thinking, or praying eventually sees the light. The person who talks to God even when God is 'not there' is alive with faith."
At the end of class I told Sr. Bernadette that I wanted to enter the Church at the next Easter vigil. 3. If you were a tree what kind of, oh sorry about that .. what is the PODest thing you have ever done? I set up WikiIndex, a clearinghouse for reviews of theological books, good, bad, and ugly. It has a long way to go, but it'll be cool when it's finished. :) 4. What is your favorite quote from Venerable John Henry Newman? "Ten thousand difficulties do not make one doubt." 5. If you could ban one hymn from existence, what would it be? That's a tough one. As a member of the Society for a Moratorium on the Music of Marty Haugen and David Haas, there are obviously a lot of songs that grate on my nerves. If I had to pick one, though, I'd probably pick "Sing of the Lord's Goodness" by Ernie Sands.

2 thoughts on “Saved Since Birth?

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