God's Presence in the Unbeliever

Thousands of years ago the great prophets of Israel; Isaiah, Ezekiel and Jeremiah all foresaw an age of greater union with their God. They wrote of the laws of God, which had thus far been etched into stone tablets or written onto papyrus scrolls. They wrote longingly of a new age when their God would write his laws directly into their hearts. It was a promise of God to his people Israel. Everyone else was excluded.

Please check out the rest of the article here:
God’s Presence in the Unbeliever

From the article…

The prophecies never mentioned the Gentile peoples, who were basically everyone outside the Israelite people.

There are however, dozens of prophesies about salvation for all nations and all people.

*I will bless those who bless you, and him who curses you I will curse; and by you all the families of the earth shall bless themselves."(Genesis 12:1)

He will not fail or be discouraged
till he has established justice in the earth;
and the coastlands
wait for his law.
(Isaiah 42:4)

he says:
"It is too light a thing that you should be my servant
to raise up the tribes of Jacob
and to restore the preserved of Israel;
I will give you as a light to the nations,
that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth
.
(Isaiah 49:6)

And many nations shall join themselves to the LORD in that day, and shall be my people; and I will dwell in the midst of you, and you shall know that the LORD of hosts has sent me to you. (Zecheriah 2:11)

For from the rising of the sun to its setting my name is great among the nations, and in every place incense is offered to my name, and a pure offering; for my name is great among the nations, says the LORD of hosts. (Malachi 1:11)*

These are just a few.

-Tim-

I thought I touched on that in the article.

There was a promise made to Abraham and fulfilled in the new covenant. The vine now has new branches grafted on which means God’s presence is for all. Matthew’s Gospel in ch 28 shows the great commission to preach to all nations. That means everyone.

Another way of looking at it is that God made immortal souls for everyone. He wants all to come to salvation so He must give graces to those whom He has made. It would be illogical for Him not to do that which is what Calvin thinks with predestination. What God has created is seen as GOOD so it must be able to somehow reflect the goodness back to God.

God’s law in the hearts of unbelievers could be considered a pre-salvation grace, that destines them for salvation.

I can see your point which comes from Jeremiah 31. A law was written in their heart which could be a natural law which means that all have a knowledge of right and wrong according to nature ( unless of course our conscience is damaged by repetitive sin).

You are right in that all have been given a grace necessary for salvation both BC and AD. But I guess I have to say that God’s grace is mediated in more than one way especially in ways I don’t understand, but makes good papers for theologians to write about…

Maybe I should have said it destines people the option of salvation

There could be some validity to both I think. Knowing natural law supposes that we know of justice innate within our consciences. Following that which is right and correct seems to me to be an actual grace in that we are given an inclination to do what is right.

I guess I see both.

Justice can be considered a natural law…even though it may appear to be an unkept natural law from the confines of our small human perspective

I believe justice is part of natural law. When thinking of things that spur us on to a belief in God it is a sense of justice somewhere somehow that things will be evened out in the long run. That is the justice of God we have to depend on even if we have to wait till the end of time. We are not required to make our own justice but God will take care of it. This belief points to God and is internally felt by many people as written in our hearts.

Acts 17:23

“For as I passed along, and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription, ‘To an unknown god.’ What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you” (NRSV).

The fact that these people knew there was an “unknown God”, something other than their false Gods, serves as proof of the One True God.

Despite being brought up in the worship of their false God’s they knew in their gut there was something more, something they were missing.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.