As promised, a little more blogging this week, specifically something I said I'd raise a month or two ago. I've been really interested for a while in Evangelical responses to what happens to the unevangelised. For a movement which is absolutist and anti-postmodern, replies are surprisingly varied and pluralist. Anyway, let's look at some options. The fundamentalist says tough, they're going to hell. Problem is, what about the poor lady seeking to live righteously and do good in a society where the Gospel is never preached? The Calvinist says it matters not, as God has determined beforehand who goes to heaven or hell, regardless of our actions and beliefs beforehand. So what about free will, then? Doesn't such a view place all the blame on God? Lest the Arminian feel a little smug here, doesn't their approach shift people's chances of eternal bliss away from God (the Calvinist position) to everyone of us? I mean, by simply reading this blog (or sleeping six hours instead of seven, taking an hour lunch break instead of 30 minutes, ad infinitum) aren't we as Christians not doing our job of evangelising and thus as a result humans are being condemned to hell for eternity? Then there is the universalist approach, which says everyone shall be saved. The problem here is, why bother being a Christian in the first place? And what about the inevitable question of what happens to Hitler and Stalin? There are alternatives, of course, for example, the concept of postmorten salvation (didn't CS Lewis subscribe to a version of this?). Or else those who seek God shall find him. Problem: prior to salvation we are all dead in trespasses and sins, so how can we even look for Him? And isn't such a view drawing on works rather than faith in Christ?
Of course, I've parodied to a certain extent the views above with the aim of encouraging you to express your views. I've wrestled with this issue for some time and will candidly (and gladly) share my current position with you, but first I'd like to hear some of your views and thoughts first.