Re: The paradox of the great commission (so to speak). I have my own view on this but you seem to be very knowledgeable so I am interested in your ideas. Before Jesus people lived under the law but I assume that only applied to the Jews since there were people before Moses and the law. My question is about what happens to the people before Moses or people during Moses time or people during Jesus time and people after Jesus that have never heard the gospel message? I have heard it said that all are saved that have not heard the message but if that were true then we should leave them in the dark, etc.
Since our eternal destiny hangs upon our answer to one question, the character of God requires that every one has an opportunity to make an informed decision about Him. Just because we don’t see it happen, or don’t believe it could is irrelevant. He can not judge a person for failing to make a decision about something he had no way of knowing. The story of the Redeemer was written in the stars during the time of Adam, (Psalm 19:1-4) and Romans 1:18-20 says that men are without excuse because the creation itself is testimony to God’s existence.
I believe that once a person has concluded that there is a God, then He’ll do everything necessary to reveal Himself to that person. It’s a promise. “You will find Me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:13) Everyone who asks receives, everyone who seeks finds, and to all who knock the door will be opened. (Matt. 7:8) The gospel story was revealed after the Fall and has been available to man ever since. The purpose of the Great Commission is to call attention to something that has been known since the beginning.