Questions about when people get "saved"


I agree there are no righteous without Christ. Never once claimed someone could be righteous on their own merit. However, the context of Romans 3 is personal sin not original sin. You are taking what St. Paul says and forcing it to say “born into the family of Adam”. Which would mean original sin. Sorry but you can’t get a teaching on original sin from the text.

Original sin is not something we do; it is something we’ve inherited (which you seem to be pointing out by saying “born into”). However, Romans chapter 3 deals with personal sin because it speaks of sins committed by the sinner. Therefore, my statement stands. You can’t use Romans 3 to claim Mary wasn’t righteous because it is dealing with personal sin, not original sin.


And the Bible teaches us it is possible to become one of the righteous, through Jesus Christ, before we fall into sin…

Jude 24-25

24 Now to him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you without blemish before the presence of his glory with rejoicing, 25 to the only God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and for ever. Amen.

The text tells us that our Lord Jesus Christ can save us before we fall and present us without blemish before God. If scripture tells us He is willing to do this for us, don’t you think His mother would be at the front of the line?

This statement confused me??? If “faith alone” is the only possible way for someone to be righteous in heaven then are you are saying no child under the age of reason or mentally handicapped person can get to heaven?

Doesn’t matter, I think Jude 24-25 pretty much shows us what I have said from the beginning. We are bound by the Sacraments, God is not. He can save anyone He wants any way He wants.

God Bless


I’m just curious what you mean by “biblical standard”.

Off the top of my head I would think the Biblical standard would be…

Christ would build His Church that would last until the end of the age. Matthew 16

Christ’s Church would be united as one John 17:21. His Church’s unity would be a visible sign to the world that Jesus was sent by God for our redemption.

This visible unified society would be hierarchical as plainly seen in Acts 15.

That this unified society hold only ONE “point of view”. Which does STOP there. 1 Corinthians 1:10 & 11:16

Most of all I see Jesus’ Biblical Standard being taught by St. Paul.

Ephesians 3:10
10 that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places.

To me it is obvious from scripture that Christ intended to start a Church. Christ wouldn’t say He would do something and then not do it. Would He?

Christ promised He would be with His Church to the end of the age. Unless Christ is a liar and abandoned His Church it should be as simple as of finding Christ’s VISIBLE UNIFIED Church in every generation up to our present time.

Maybe you could point me to the “Biblical Standard” you believe Christ intended for His Church?

God Bless


I don’t mean to interrupt but I would like to ask a question. I believe your statement above to be true, God is not bound by Sacraments, He can save anyone He wants any way He wants. How then do individual Catholics even dare to say that non-Catholics are headed for hell or that “Protestantism” is wrong or sinful? How can the CC state that there is no salvation outside the Church?


Separated from the Aposotlic faith, which was replaced by doctrines invented at the Reformation.

Is this not a contradiction in terms? The Apostle Paul writes that we are to preserve the Word of God, whether it was delivered by writing, or in person. Or are you denying that Paul was an Apotle/

Sacred Tradition is not “subjective”. it is the Truth of Jesus’ teachings transmitted through the Apostles. It is preserved infallibly in the Church by the Holy Spirit. To ignore it is to disobey the Apostolic command to preserve it!

Yes, this is a modernist position. It presupposes that the people who wrote the text did not know what it meant, and were not able to transmit what they had received to faithful men, who were other to teach others also. 2 Tim. 2;2

What you are saying is that Jesus Christ is unable to preserve the meaning of his word, such that it was lost until the last 50-75 years? Sounds kinda Mormonish!

If finding the “truth of the matter” has been “hit or miss”, then the Holy Spirit was unable or unwilling to lead the Church into all Truth. God failed His promise, and left mankind to his own limited devices.

Their faith was Catholic, tgG, as preserved by their successors today. Universal, yes, though at the NT times it was only a small seed that later grew into a large tree.


Rome was a latecomer, relatively, to the Apostolic ministry. The Catholic faith was born in Palestine, and spread to Antioch of Syria. There, the line of Bishops ordained by Peter is older than the one in Rome. No, “Rome” is not the “Head” of the universal Body of Christ. Jesus is the Head. Rome is the seat of the successor of Peter.

All those who receive a trinitarian baptism are made members of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. But the Church founded by Christ is not “denominated”. It is one in doctrinal unity. Those who denominate from the Apostolic faith separate themselves to various degrees.

This is the sticking point, is it not, tgG? Everyone who reads the text is at liberty to interpret what the “biblical standards” are for themselves. This is why there are so many different understandings of what “Church” means. Catholics (and Orthodox) receive and maintain the definition taught by the Apostles. The Children of the Reformation have invented novel definitions.

The two are not mutually exclusive. Eventually, any action taken requires organization to be effective. We see this already in the book of Acts, where the Apostles chose deacons to organize so that they coulf focus on preaching.

This is an interesting and novel interpretation of waht it means to be “called out”. The Aposltes taught that members of the Church were called out from the world to a heavenly destiny. All of us, not just some, are expected to live our faith in the world. This principle does not apply to “some” but to ALL. the call to evangelism is not a suggestion, but a commandment. We ALL have an obligation to live our faith “publically”. This happens because we are called out of a world living in sin, called out of the flesh to dwell in the Spirit. Called out from slavery to the devil to live the freedom purchased for us on the cross.

Perhaps you can give an example?


Those individual Catholics are wrong. Non-Catholics are subjected to God’s judgement just like anyone else. To claim to know how The Author will judge any particular soul is the ultimate hubris as it pertains to individuals.

It splits the Church that Christ commanded to be “one”.

Because the Church is the body of Christ. How can there be salvation outside the body of Christ?

Now, the Church can be both “visible” and “invisible”, if that’s what you’re meaning.

"For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit. " 1 Cor 12:13


I think you have made my point for me here. Sinful men, departing from the plan of Christ, does not change the immutable Truths deposited once for all to the Church. You seem to be citing the behaviors of fallen men to discount the doctrines of the faith. That is like saying that nothing Jesus taught is true beause Judas betrayed what He taught. That just doesn;t make sense.

It is a good thing that the Jews did not think this way, or else circumcision would really not have made the offspring sons of the covenant. There is an expectation that the child received into the faith will be raised in that faith. Knowing you, Itwin, I have no doubt that any children born into your household would be.


Could you clarify what the last sentence is meant to be saying?


Maybe I have been misunderstanding the meaning of “there is no salvation outside the Church.”

Is it not intended in that statement that the Church is the Roman Catholic Church?


Because, everyone can have their own opinion. Doesn’t mean their opinion is correct or that it is true. If an individual Catholic has said this to you I would like to officially apologize on behalf of the Catholic Church. The Church has never nor will ever proclaim someone is officially in hell.

For me personally it is pretty simple it all comes down to…

Luke 12:48 Every one to whom much is given, of him will much be required; and of him to whom men commit much they will demand the more.

We are responsible for the gifts Christ has given us. That’s why I can’t believe in OSAS. If we squander the gifts He has bestowed upon us no amount of belief, we think we have, will guarantee our salvation.

This should help explain what this means…

Hope this helps,

God Bless


You’ve got that part right. That’s the visible portion of the Church. But there is also an invisible Church where Christ works as well. But that’s STILL the Church.

We know where the Church is (the visible Church). We do not know where it isn’t (the invisible Church).


The fulfillment of circumcision is the circumcision of the heart–the cutting away of the flesh and standing before God in purity and holiness, Romans 2:

25 Circumcision has value if you observe the law, but if you break the law, you have become as though you had not been circumcised. 26 So then, if those who are not circumcised keep the law’s requirements, will they not be regarded as though they were circumcised? 27 The one who is not circumcised physically and yet obeys the law will condemn you who, even though you have the written code and circumcision, are a lawbreaker.

28 A person is not a Jew who is one only outwardly, nor is circumcision merely outward and physical. 29 No, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God.

Yes, children were circumcised, but Paul is quite emphatic here and other places in Scripture that the real inheritors of the promise were not those physically circumcised. It was those whose hearts had been circumcised. It is as the prophet Jeremiah said:

For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. (Jeremiah 31:33)

The people of God are not those who have been outwardly circumcised nor outwardly washed. He is looking for a people whose hearts have been circumcised and who have been washed from sin and iniquity, who desperately grab hold of Jesus by faith. That inward circumcision, the inward washing is what brings us into the covenant community. It always has, for Abraham was father to those who believed whether circumcised or uncircumcised:

So then, he is the father of all who believe but have not been circumcised, in order that righteousness might be credited to them. And he is then also the father of the circumcised who not only are circumcised but who also follow in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised (Romans 4:11-12).


But the New Testament is clear. This covenant community–the Church, spiritual Israel–will not be like national Israel where men were marked as belonging to the covenant when they were not truly sons of Abraham in spirit. One doesn’t join this community by birth or outward symbol. One joins the covenant by entering into the reality of Christ’s death and resurrection by faith.

This is how circumcision and baptism are similar. Both are meant to be “signs and seals” of a true spiritual reality. The spiritual blessings of Christ’s atonement manifested physically in a way that we can see and feel. Yet, merely cutting away the foreskin does not in itself mean that you are cutting away the sin nature. Merely performing baptism will not guarantee that you are washed and sanctified inwardly. The promise is for those who live by faith.

No, I don’t.


I never said the Spirit could not be poured out on infants. He certainly can fill infants. We were not told to baptize infants. We were told “repent and be baptized.” There is a sequence there that is important. You keep making this about denying Christ by preventing baptism. In no way is the Spirit’s work limited by a lack of baptism as he is quite capable doing his work without H2O. Baptism was a command given to us to obey, not a prison for God.

No. I am saying before someone is baptized they first need to hear the gospel preached and respond to the convicting power of the Holy Spirit with repentance. Then they are candidates for baptism.

No. You think that is what I’m saying because you believe water baptism regenerates us. I don’t, so I don’t see how I am denying Christ the opportunity to indwell an infant simply because this infant’s parents did not baptize him.

Baptism is about what Christ has done, but it is also our response. We are choosing to reject once and for all our lives before Christ. To be buried with him and to be raised with him. Christ has done this, but we have freewill. In baptism, we respond to Jesus’s love with obedience. If I do have children, I would pray they would make that decision, but it is strange for me to think of making it for them knowing what that means–to die to self, to live for Christ. I will dedicate them to God, I will uphold them in prayer, and as they grow I will teach them to walk in the ways of the Lord. When they come to saving faith in Christ, they will be baptized knowing what it means and knowing the life it commits them to living.

If they die without baptism you mean? God sovereignly chooses them for eternal life, regenerates their souls, and applies the saving benefits of Christ’s blood to them apart from conscious faith. There is a lot of Scriptural interpretation that goes into this from the evangelical position, I won’t go into details here, but I could explain it further if you want.


It depends on what you mean by Christian. If you mean a member of a Christian family, I suppose you could say a 1 day old infant is a Christian. If you mean a disciple of Christ, well I think we’d need to have a conscious decision to follow Christ on the part of that person.

Not everyone who was circumcised was a child of the covenant, and though they may have been earthly descendants of Abraham many were not his spiritual offspring. Ultimately, God doesn’t care what earthly family you were born into. He looks at the heart.


Circumcision didn’t make offspring sons of the covenant. As Paul said in Romans 2:28-29:

A man is not a Jew because he is one outwardly, nor is circumcision only outward and physical. No, a man is a Jew because he is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code.


I don’t understand your point? The Bible doesn’t tell us not to either. You even admitted so in your last post to Hope.

The Bible only speaks of adult converts to the faith. Which makes sense. Christianity was just beginning. Personally, based on Jewish old covenant age of circumcision and historical early Christian writings on age at Baptism, I think it is safer to assume that children were Baptized into Christ. Then to assume, 1500 years later, based on no evidence or tradition, that a child has to come to an age of reason.

Although I do agree with this (believers Baptism) it is not the norm. Could you point to scripture that shows us the Spirit did His work without Baptism being done either before or after?

I don’t quite understand your “prison” comment?

I’m not sure why you would equate the Sacraments to a prison? The sacraments are an outward sign instituted by Christ to give us grace. WHY? …

Because God knows we learn through our senses, so he set the sacraments up to appeal to our humanity.
The sacraments use physical matter but provide supernatural and natural benefits. This is shown to us throughout the Bible. Read about Jesus physical cures. He used outwards signs to perform a deeper more lasting spiritual healing. Notice he used physical means. Mud, spittle, spoken words, and eye contact…… WHY?..Because he knows as human beings we learn through our senses. So he brought it down to our level.

Jesus was only with humanity for 33 years. He left us the sacraments to allow us to experience His physical touch and His physical presence now and in the generations to come.

The new covenant sacraments bring about the old covenant promises of God. They are the continuation and fulfillment of the way God dealt with us from the beginning. He didn’t throw away the old covenant and start over. He fulfilled it. The new covenant fulfillment always has to be better and easier than the old.

The sacraments aren’t something we do (which would be a prison) for God. The sacraments are God’s gift to us.

Although I would never use such a harsh word to describe what you do, I would think the definition of Baptism being a prison would be still having to be baptized even though God provides you with no grace (or regeneration).


Just curious. Although, you do not have children I’m sure you could still answer this question.

Which is greater this life or the next?

If a parent is willing to and I’m sure we could even say commanded to, by God, to care for their children and make decisions for their children. Like go to the doctor, eat your vegetables, etc…to ensure the child can have life here on earth. Why wouldn’t God want us parents to make the initial decision for our children, to ensure, if something were to happen to them, that they have eternal life?

If you have the time I would appreciate it. Because, it sounds like you are either denying original sin still exists or it sounds like you are saying… God regenerates the souls of babies, then once they come to an age of reason they either repent or they get unregenerated.


There is only one Body of Christ. All who are in Christ are in His One Body, the Church.

The Catholic Church is not “Roman”. The Latin Rite is the largest, and most common in the West.

It is inappropriate and inaccurate. Such persons are disobedient to the teachings of the Church.


I’m not sure what you mean here? I think I know where you are going with this, but in context we are speaking about infant Baptism. So where does the Bible tell us that not every 8 day old child, who was circumcised, wasn’t really a child of the covenant?

I notice in your next post you give guanophore the same answer…

But this is speaking of adults not children. We know that physical circumcision was the sign of the old covenant (Genesis 17:9-14) and the rite of initiation as a child of the covenant (Lev 12:3). Which corresponds to Baptism being the sign of and initiation into the new covenant.

St. Paul isn’t saying circumcision doesn’t make an infant a child of the covenant he is saying circumcision isn’t a guarantee of your salvation just because you are in the covenant family.

I would argue he is saying exactly what Catholics believe. Baptism (circumcision) brings you into the covenant family (as an adult or as a baby). However, you must have an inward change of the heart to reap the rewards of the covenant family.

I’m siding with guanophore on this one. The point being made is in regards to the mindset of the people being preached to. OT Jews believed their children were accepted into God’s covenant family at 8 days old. If this were no longer the case with Baptism it is hard to believe we see no evidence of this being questioned. However, we do see a debate arise in the 3rd century as to whether or not the parent has to wait until the 8th day.

Cyprian of Carthage

“As to what pertains to the case of infants: You [Fidus] said that they ought not to be baptized within the second or third day after their birth, that the old law of circumcision must be taken into consideration, and that you did not think that one should be baptized and sanctified within the eighth day after his birth. In our council it seemed to us far otherwise. No one agreed to the course which you thought should be taken. Rather, we all judge that the mercy and grace of God ought to be denied to no man born” (Letters 64:2 [A.D. 253]).

Your thoughts on the historical evidence for vs. no evidence against?

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