Something I keep struggling with is this: so we’re responsible to respond to gods self-revelation in nature and our conscience and responsible for the light we have not the light we don’t have. So, what if someone is convinced through nature and conscience that there is certainly a god, but that person’s response ends up being belief in god that is not the Christian god? How can someone be liable for that if they really think that’s the true god they’re responding to? Allah for example. They see nature, they’re listening to their conscience, and it leads them to Allah lets say. If they’re accountable for that mistake, how can god fault them since they were indeed responding to nature and conscience? And if people are NOT accountable for that and God will have mercy for such people who misunderstood Him but at least tried to reach out, then wouldn’t we as Christians need to stop saying so assuredly how everyone is going to hell who hasn’t confessed Jesus, like we’re so sure it’s that simple? Are we perhaps putting the real god in a box of our own making? Maybe I’m having a problem with the box, and not the actual TRUE way god works. Perhaps God has mercy on all kinds of people who He chooses to have mercy on who were misguided in their beliefs about which version of him was true?
Think for example about all the millions of battered and abused women at this very moment in the Middle East under super oppressive male dominated Islam. They would probably never think to challenge the boundaries laid out for them bc the stakes are so dangerous and high. And abuse and emotional mental trauma being treated like an object messes people up. They don’t trust their own thoughts bc they’re been demeaned as subhuman who exists to serve a man. Similarly imagine the millions of trafficked individuals being abused and unable to comprehend anything related to the idea that someone could love them or that love is a real thing. The Bible says God is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. I can’t believe He won’t have mercy on such women and trafficked people who have been battered and abused via a wrong religion. So can I still be a Christian and believe that Jesus’ blood is enough to cover those who know their sin and those who don’t and there will be an individualized judgement for each person based on their heart? Like can I believe that there isn’t a black and white line for the Jesus confessors and a line for the non Jesus confessors? Can I believe that his blood is enough even for those who were misguided if god knows their heart? You know what I mean?
And if that’s a reasonable belief, to me that is a totally different belief than the evangelical mainstream doctrine that says the only way to get into heaven is if you know you’re a sinner and accept Jesus. If that’s the only way in, it does not account for the mystery and nuance that is allowed in the rest of the a Bible. It does not account for the mystery that Jesus’ blood covers even the people of the OT who didn’t know Jesus. His blood still covered them. Perhaps his blood still covers the future of people who God will choose to have mercy on given the limits of knowledge they had, while many others will be held to a higher standard based on our ability to dig and search. Thoughts? Thank you!