Q. I’ve read your responses to the question of how gentiles were saved in the Old Testament. You say there was a court called the Court of the Gentiles outside the temple that gave Gentiles a chance to recognize God. But what about the people that lived too far away to ever have heard of it? You also say that every person on earth has a bona fide chance to hear the gospel at one point in their life. But what about the time right after Jesus died but the gospel hadn’t been spread yet? What about people in other countries like the Native Americans? (and I don’t believe the Mormon Jesus preached to them). How could they have a chance to accept the gospel if it hadn’t spread to them yet? I’ve read your other answers about nature testifying about God. If someone came to that realization before hearing about Christ, was that enough? Because certainly, it took some time for the gospel to spread.
A. This is not about understanding how something could happen. It’s about understanding the character of God and trusting in His integrity.
He said He doesn’t want that any should perish (2 Peter 3:9), but wants all mankind to be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth (1 Tim. 2:3-4). He’s made Himself so obvious in the Creation that man is without excuse (Romans 1:18-20). But no one can come to the Father except through the Son (John 14:9).
Therefore, He has to make a way for everyone to hear the Gospel or else He wasn’t being truthful with us when He said these things. Whether men understand how He does this or not is immaterial. Being God it’s not a challenge for Him. He can speak into the mind of any person at any time. He can appear to people in dreams. He can send an angel. He can even make animals talk to us. We know this because He’s done all these things. So we know He doesn’t have to depend on human means.
I sincerely believe that anyone who has looked at the creation and said, “This couldn’t have just happened. There had to be a creator” has received a response from God that included a legitimate offer of salvation. I believe that because I know the character of God, I trust His integrity, and have taken Him at His word.