How Does the Lord save Infants/Babies then?

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Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
So all infants are elected to salvation, and then at some point in their future many of them are no longer elect to salvation but ordained to destruction? That seems to be a very shaky and costly view to uphold.
I would say that God knows all of those who will perish as a babe/infant, so none of them would grow up to reject Him.
 

Romans922

Puritan Board Professor
would say that God knows all of those who will perish as a babe/infant, so none of them would grow up to reject Him.

I'm sorry, perhaps you aren't being very clear. You said, "all infants are elected to salvation." Is it "all" or not? You go in this last comment to talk about all those who die in infancy. I guess I'm not sure of what "all" is in reference to.

I suppose another question is when does the babe/infant distinction end where one is not one of the "all"?

Finally, what Scripture do you use to come to this conclusion that all infants are elect? Again, it seems like a very shaky and costly view to hold.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
I'm sorry, perhaps you aren't being very clear. You said, "all infants are elected to salvation." Is it "all" or not? You go in this last comment to talk about all those who die in infancy. I guess I'm not sure of what "all" is in reference to.

I suppose another question is when does the babe/infant distinction end where one is not one of the "all"?

Finally, what Scripture do you use to come to this conclusion that all infants are elect? Again, it seems like a very shaky and costly view to hold.

Jesus revealed to how how God really feels about Little ones, to have children come unto Him and not be turned away, and David saw that he would go to be with his now dead child one day.
I do not think one can be really dogmatic on this issue, and I am appealing to what we know has been revealed to us by the scriptures on how God has mercy upon those unable to do anything got themselves, such as that large group of children in Nineveh that God saved during time of the prophet Jonah.

My hope is that all of those babies aborted in this land since 1973 got to see Jesus!
 

Ask Mr. Religion

Flatly Unflappable
Jesus revealed to how how God really feels about Little ones, to have children come unto Him and not be turned away,
Matthew 19:14/Luke 18:16?

How is our Lord's expressions of the dullness of the men of little faith hindering these children or a child's surrender and dependency for all things given to them, as we all must have accompanying our faith (Mark 10:15), actually relevant to your view that all infants who die in the womb or in infancy are in fact elect?

You are importing far more exegetical freight from these passages than they actually bear.
 

Ask Mr. Religion

Flatly Unflappable
I am advocating for the position that the Lord, through the Death of Jesus, has provided for the atonement for the sins of all of His elect in Christ, and that God Himself has chosen to elect to salvation all infants and those who were born mentally challenged. I would agree with the Confession that all elect are saved, but I am saying that God has chosen to elect all in such a state. They still have Original Sin and are born as sinners, but God Himself has chosen to redeem them all through the merits of the Cross of Christ.

I do not think one can be really dogmatic on this issue,

All evidence to the contrary, notwithstanding, of course. :doh:
 

Ben Zartman

Puritan Board Sophomore
I am advocating for the position that the Lord, through the Death of Jesus, has provided for the atonement for the sins of all of His elect in Christ, and that God Himself has chosen to elect to salvation all infants and those who were born mentally challenged. I would agree with the Confession that all elect are saved, but I am saying that God has chosen to elect all in such a state. They still have Original Sin and are born as sinners, but God Himself has chosen to redeem them all through the merits of the Cross of Christ.
But David, there is no scripture that indicates that God has elected all children who were to die in infancy and the mentally challenged. I do not say that He could not, if He so chose, but we have no Scripture to warrant believing or advocating such a position. Would you comfort the woman who got an abortion by saying, "I know that the child you whacked is with Jesus"? Imagine what a rash of abortions that might cause! Better to say: "You have sinned greatly, but in Christ is forgiveness of sins."
 

kodos

Puritan Board Junior
We cannot move the goalposts of the Arminian's great folly "just because" we don't like the idea of infants perishing. God has no problem with hating a sinner even as an infant. See Esau and every other reprobate.

We are sinful and hateful even when nursing at our mother's breasts.

We trust that God saves elect infants. That's all we can infer, Biblically speaking. Who they are, God knows. Let us neither imagine ourselves "more" benign or wise than the Almighty. The Confession is wise in its treatment of the subject.
 
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Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
I would also add that Spurgeon saw the treatment of Infants by God in the same fashion as those authors, and myself, so I am not advocating for a brand new and Novel approach here.
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
The fly in the ointment for me is the flood.

21 And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man: 22 All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died. 23 And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark. 24 And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.

The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Ge 7:21–24.


20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.

The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), 1 Pe 3:20.


Luke 17:27

27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.

The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Lk 17:27.


Matthew 10:28

28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.


The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Mt 10:28.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
The fly in the ointment for me is the flood.

21 And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man: 22 All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died. 23 And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark. 24 And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.

The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Ge 7:21–24.


20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.

The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), 1 Pe 3:20.


Luke 17:27

27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.

The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Lk 17:27.


Matthew 10:28

28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.


The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Mt 10:28.
How so?
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Did u Read my post? I believe it's pretty self explanatory. In the flood everyone perished but Noah and his kin. 1st Peter tells us only 8 souls were saved.
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Only 8 were saved, or that only 8 survived?

1 Pet helps:
18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: 19 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; 20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. 21 The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ: 22 Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.

The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), 1 Pe 3:18–22.

The scriptures above show that Peter considered everyone in the flood that perished, are in prison....
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Matthew Henry:


II. The apostle passes from the example of Christ to that of the old world, and sets before the Jews, to whom he wrote, the different event of those who believed and obeyed Christ preaching by Noah, from those that continued disobedient and unbelieving, intimating to the Jews that they were under a like sentence. God would not wait much longer upon them. They had now an offer of mercy; those that accepted of it should be saved, but those who rejected Christ and the gospel should be as certainly destroyed as ever the disobedient in the times of Noah were.

Matthew Henry, Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible: Complete and Unabridged in One Volume (Peabody: Hendrickson, 1994), 2429–2430.
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Calvin:
They saw almost the whole world filled with unbelievers, that they enjoyed all authority, and that life was in their power. This trial might have shaken the confidence of those who were shut up, as it were, under the sentence of death. Therefore Peter reminds them, that the condition of the fathers was not different, and that though the multitude of the ungodly then covered the whole earth, their life was yet preserved in safety by the power of God.
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Only 8 were saved, or that only 8 survived?

The ark is akin to Christ. The water is akin to NT baptism. We know Noah found grace, conclusively, as the scriptures tell us so. Noah's family was a covenant family. We're all of them saved? We can't know this perfectly, but since they were in covenant, we go on that to give us a clue.
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
The ark is akin to Christ. The water is akin to NT baptism. We know Noah found grace, conclusively, as the scriptures tell us so. Noah's family was a covenant family. We're all of them saved? We can't know this perfectly, but since they were in covenant, we go on that to give us a clue.
You have done a nice job here, as this shows to me that only those who went into the Ark were saved, just as only those now in Christ shall be saved.
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
The ark is akin to Christ. The water is akin to NT baptism. We know Noah found grace, conclusively, as the scriptures tell us so. Noah's family was a covenant family. We're all of them saved? We can't know this perfectly, but since they were in covenant, we go on that to give us a clue.
 
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Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
Peter seems perfectly explicit to me, v19: that "eight souls were saved." I don't see him making an external affirmation. I don't think we have any need to map derived, foreign (to this text) covenant-qualifications onto his statement.

Peter's simple and straightforward declaration should force us to be cautious about or qualify any alternate judgments respecting the family of Noah to which we might be inclined, derived from other, less obvious texts or criteria.
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Bruce,
I deleted my post above earlier; however, after thinking about it and researching a bit more, I put it back and stand on what I wrote.

Is it your position that Ham was a regenerate person? I am more comfortable with the covenantal idea and the 1 Peter passage, given the curse. *Not trying to be difficult, mind you.

24 And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him. 25 And he said,
Cursed be Canaan;
A servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.
26 And he said,
Blessed be the LORD God of Shem;
And Canaan shall be his servant.
27 God shall enlarge Japheth,
And he shall dwell in the tents of Shem;
And Canaan shall be his servant.

Poole writes:

25 And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.
And he said, not from the passion of revenge, but by Divine inspiration, and the Spirit of prophecy, Cursed be Canaan; hateful to God, abhorred by men, miserable in his person and posterity.

When Canaan is mentioned, Ham is not exempted from the curse, but rather more deeply plunged into it, whilst he is pronounced accursed, not only in his person, (which is manifestly supposed by his commission of that sin for which the curse was inflicted,) but also in his posterity, which doubtless was a great aggravation of his grief; as on the contrary Joseph is said to be blessed when his children are blessed, Gen. 48:15, 16. 2.

This portion of Poole I'm having trouble with:

So here Canaan may be put for the father of Canaan, as the Arabic translation hath it, that is, Ham, as the Seventy here render it. And though Ham had more sons, yet he may be here described by his relation to Canaan, because in him the curse was more fixed and dreadful, reaching to his utter extirpation, whilst the rest of Ham’s posterity in after-ages were blessed with the saving knowledge of the gospel.

Matthew Poole, Annotations upon the Holy Bible, vol. 1 (New York: Robert Carter and Brothers, 1853), 25.

HENRY:

1. He pronounces a curse on Canaan the son of Ham (v. 25), in whom Ham is himself cursed, either because this son of his was now more guilty than the rest, or because the posterity of this son was afterwards to be rooted out of their land, to make room for Israel.

Matthew Henry, Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible: Complete and Unabridged in One Volume (Peabody: Hendrickson, 1994), 30.

Calvin calls Ham 'ungodly' and possibly reprobate:

25. Cursed be Canaan. It is asked, in the first place, why Noah, instead of pronouncing the curse upon his son, inflicts the severity of punishment, which that son had deserved, upon his innocent grandson; since it seems not consistent with the justice of God, to visit the crimes of parents upon their children? But the answer is well known; namely, that God, although he pursues his course of judgments upon the sons and the grandchildren of the ungodly, yet, in being angry with them, is not angry with the innocent, because even they themselves are found in fault. Wherefore there is no absurdity in the act of avenging the sins of the fathers upon their reprobate children; since, of necessity, all those whom God has deprived of his Spirit are subject to his wrath. But it is surprising that Noah should curse his grandson; and should pass his son Ham, the author of the crime, over in silence. The Jews imagine that the reason of this was to be traced to the special favour of God; and that, since the Lord had bestowed on Ham so great an honour, the curse was transferred from him to his son. But the conjecture is futile. Certainly, to my mind, there is no doubt that the punishment was carried forward even to his posterity, in order that the severity of it might be the more apparent; as if the Lord had openly proclaimed that the punishment of one man would not satisfy him, but that he would attach the curse also to the posterity of the offender, so that it should extend through successive ages. In the meantime, Ham himself is so far from being exempt, that God, by involving his son with him, aggravates his own condemnation.

John Calvin and John King, Commentary on the First Book of Moses Called Genesis, vol. 1 (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 2010), 305–306.

So, if 1 Peter means more than saved by covenantal faithfulness, the curse is problematic.
 
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Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
Noah's curse is upon Canaan; ergo, we must infer Canaan is the guilty party.

Canaan does wickedly, and his curse is a foreshadowing of what will befall his wicked posterity whose land will "vomit them out," so making room for a future Israelite state. Moses gives the Exodus generation this history in this form.

The text v24 says younger which in the context undoubtedly means youngest (Heb. uses comparative adjectives for superlatives). Ham is the middle son; the repetitive triplet of names makes this a virtual certainty.

The only time this order is not followed is in ch.10 and the table of nations, when Shem is put last because his is the story to go forward (compare to the listing forth, then setting aside, of Ishmael's and Esau's lines in chs. 25 & 36, so the story can move forward with Isaac and Jacob).

The reason for 10:21, which properly reads (note the KJV margin): "Shem, the elder brother of Japheth," is precisely what is demanded by the literary purpose to the inversion of the order; thus confirming that Ham as the middle son cannot be "the younger/youngest."​

Canaan is the youngest son of Noah mentioned in the text of Genesis thus far, in fact twice in ch.9 vv18 & 22, so that we would know who he is before his involvement; cf. Gen.29:5, where Laban is called the son of Nahor (his grandfather); see Gen.28:5 for his true father's name.

Abraham has sons and daughters of multiple generations. Christ is the last "son of David." Such rendering of grandsons and (multi)great-grandsons as sons is not an aberration in Scripture.

I don't like disagreeing with such favored exegetes; but I don't believe those you mentioned have it right. And as a bonus I don't have to twiddle with 1Peter's comments.
 

Held Fast

Puritan Board Freshman
I can go no further than the LCBF Ch. 10 Para 3, which does not state all infants are elect, just that elect infants and other elect persons who are incapable of being outwardly called by the ministry of the Word, are regenerated and saved by Christ. This provides no assurance that the children of the elect are likewise elect, which is comforting to me in that it preserves salvation as by grace alone, and not by the merit of blood relation or ritual. That some infants are not elect likewise preserves salvation as by grace alone, and not by the merit of supposed innocence of action or knowledge. God's election is not derivative from God's knowledge of our relationships, our behavioral innocence, or our potential response to the call of the ministry of the Word in an alternate timeline. God's election is an extension of His will - thanks be to God that any are saved! Thanks be to God that any infants are elect!
 

Dachaser

Puritan Board Doctor
I can go no further than the LCBF Ch. 10 Para 3, which does not state all infants are elect, just that elect infants and other elect persons who are incapable of being outwardly called by the ministry of the Word, are regenerated and saved by Christ. This provides no assurance that the children of the elect are likewise elect, which is comforting to me in that it preserves salvation as by grace alone, and not by the merit of blood relation or ritual. That some infants are not elect likewise preserves salvation as by grace alone, and not by the merit of supposed innocence of action or knowledge. God's election is not derivative from God's knowledge of our relationships, our behavioral innocence, or our potential response to the call of the ministry of the Word in an alternate timeline. God's election is an extension of His will - thanks be to God that any are saved! Thanks be to God that any infants are elect!
The Lord is going to do as He pleases towards the infants, and whatever the number saved, we will be praising the Lord for them.
 
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