Infants Who Die Without Baptism
#31
(11-01-2019, 06:36 PM)Melkite Wrote:
(11-01-2019, 12:50 PM)Paul Wrote: None of us are innocent. We all inherit the lack of grace that results from Adam's rejection of God. And just because you aren't guilty of personal sin doesn't mean you deserve heaven.

To put this another way, you believe that God cannot be outdone in mercy, right?  If you were the judge, would you not show the soul of an infant who died without baptism the mercy to enter heaven?  Of course you would!
I think the problem with this line of argument lies in a misunderstanding of just what entails entrance into heaven. When the soul is unbaptized, i.e. subject to the sin of Adam, it is not disposed in its nature to grace and is not capable of entering heaven. A key thing about Christ's redemptive sacrifice is that He clothed Himself not just in the flesh of man, but in human nature itself. His death and resurrection was the death of human nature under Adam's sin and its subsequent rebirth, through baptism, into the redeemed human nature of Christ. This means that souls reborn into the redeemed human nature of Jesus Christ have a disposition towards heaven and grace; whereas the unbaptized do not.

From my understanding, it's not a matter of this being some sort of court trial and that we need enough "grace points" to enter the kingdom of heaven. But that the unbaptized soul doesn't even have the proper disposition of nature to enter heaven. It's like trying to run a program built for an Apple OS on a Windows OS; it won't even boot up because it's simply not built to operate on that system. Therefore, for an unbaptized infant, or child before the age of reason, to die and go to Limbo is a logical result of their disordered nature; not anything they personally did to offend God.
"The Heart of Jesus is closer to you when you suffer, than when you are full of joy." - St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

Put not your trust in princes: In the children of men, in whom there is no salvation. - Ps. 145:2-3

"For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables." - 2 Timothy 4:3-4
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#32
(11-01-2019, 06:59 PM)Augustinian Wrote: I think the problem with this line of argument lies in a misunderstanding of just what entails entrance into heaven. When the soul is unbaptized, i.e. subject to the sin of Adam, it is not disposed in its nature to grace and is not capable of entering heaven. A key thing about Christ's redemptive sacrifice is that He clothed Himself not just in the flesh of man, but in human nature itself. His death and resurrection was the death of human nature under Adam's sin and its subsequent rebirth, through baptism, into the redeemed human nature of Christ. This means that souls reborn into the redeemed human nature of Jesus Christ have a disposition towards heaven and grace; whereas the unbaptized do not.

From my understanding, it's not a matter of this being some sort of court trial and that we need enough "grace points" to enter the kingdom of heaven. But that the unbaptized soul doesn't even have the proper disposition of nature to enter heaven. It's like trying to run a program built for an Apple OS on a Windows OS; it won't even boot up because it's simply not built to operate on that system. Therefore, for an unbaptized infant, or child before the age of reason, to die and go to Limbo is a logical result of their disordered nature; not anything they personally did to offend God.

This is a purely legal viewpoint.  Yes, limbo logically follows from what we know.  But that's just it.  It's a presumption.  It isn't able to take into account information we don't have.

God has given us baptism as the only sure means of entrance into heaven. It's correct that we know of no other means.  But God is not bound by the rules that he sets up for us.  Holding to the logical view on this constrains God to natural law.  Yet, if he was able to create each of our souls from nothing, surely he can recreate our souls, without baptism, into a nature that is capable of entering heaven.  He can do this; the only question is if he does this.  As this is something that either would take place very near the moment of death, or presumably shortly thereafter, God owes us no confirmation that he does this.  The most one can say is we don't know that God does it.  But there is every reason to hope that he does.  It is absolutely heartbreaking to see, particularly parents, say that they "know" their child is either in limbo or hell because they are so molded into a legal system of defining things that they can't see their own God as existing and operating, or merely even able to exist and operate, outside of a legal system that was put in place solely to guide us.
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#33
(11-01-2019, 08:26 PM)Melkite Wrote:
(11-01-2019, 06:59 PM)Augustinian Wrote: I think the problem with this line of argument lies in a misunderstanding of just what entails entrance into heaven. When the soul is unbaptized, i.e. subject to the sin of Adam, it is not disposed in its nature to grace and is not capable of entering heaven. A key thing about Christ's redemptive sacrifice is that He clothed Himself not just in the flesh of man, but in human nature itself. His death and resurrection was the death of human nature under Adam's sin and its subsequent rebirth, through baptism, into the redeemed human nature of Christ. This means that souls reborn into the redeemed human nature of Jesus Christ have a disposition towards heaven and grace; whereas the unbaptized do not.

From my understanding, it's not a matter of this being some sort of court trial and that we need enough "grace points" to enter the kingdom of heaven. But that the unbaptized soul doesn't even have the proper disposition of nature to enter heaven. It's like trying to run a program built for an Apple OS on a Windows OS; it won't even boot up because it's simply not built to operate on that system. Therefore, for an unbaptized infant, or child before the age of reason, to die and go to Limbo is a logical result of their disordered nature; not anything they personally did to offend God.

This is a purely legal viewpoint.  Yes, limbo logically follows from what we know.  But that's just it.  It's a presumption.  It isn't able to take into account information we don't have.

God has given us baptism as the only sure means of entrance into heaven. It's correct that we know of no other means.  But God is not bound by the rules that he sets up for us.  Holding to the logical view on this constrains God to natural law.  Yet, if he was able to create each of our souls from nothing, surely he can recreate our souls, without baptism, into a nature that is capable of entering heaven.  He can do this; the only question is if he does this.  As this is something that either would take place very near the moment of death, or presumably shortly thereafter, God owes us no confirmation that he does this.  The most one can say is we don't know that God does it.  But there is every reason to hope that he does.  It is absolutely heartbreaking to see, particularly parents, say that they "know" their child is either in limbo or hell because they are so molded into a legal system of defining things that they can't see their own God as existing and operating, or merely even able to exist and operate, outside of a legal system that was put in place solely to guide us.

Christ said that no one can come to the Father except through Him. And to go through Christ is to be reborn in Him through baptism. I don't particularly care that it seems "legalistic" to you, that doesn't at all make it a false statement. Lest we forget that God wrote the Law of the tables in stone and presented them to Moses; God is the original legalist.

Your logic of "reasonable hope" on this inevitably leads to the stance of universal salvation. You're not looking at this from the perspective of God, but of men. If we can have a reasonable hope that all unbaptized babies are saved, what is to say that maybe all men are saved too? Why even baptize infants if we can just presume that God will save them? This stems from the human conception of justice, not the Divine conception of justice.
"The Heart of Jesus is closer to you when you suffer, than when you are full of joy." - St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

Put not your trust in princes: In the children of men, in whom there is no salvation. - Ps. 145:2-3

"For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables." - 2 Timothy 4:3-4
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#34
(11-01-2019, 09:32 PM)Augustinian Wrote: Christ said that no one can come to the Father except through Him. And to go through Christ is to be reborn in Him through baptism. I don't particularly care that it seems "legalistic" to you, that doesn't at all make it a false statement. Lest we forget that God wrote the Law of the tables in stone and presented them to Moses; God is the original legalist.

Your logic of "reasonable hope" on this inevitably leads to the stance of universal salvation. You're not looking at this from the perspective of God, but of men. If we can have a reasonable hope that all unbaptized babies are saved, what is to say that maybe all men are saved too? Why even baptize infants if we can just presume that God will save them? This stems from the human conception of justice, not the Divine conception of justice.

Who's to say that unbaptized babies don't go through Christ?  We have literally no idea what God may or may not do after death.

I'm about as close to universal salvation as one can be without actually being there.  You can worship a legal god if you want.  As I've said before in other threads, if God is really as you describe him, hell would be a better place for me, because being in the presence of such a cold-hearted tyrant would be an even greater torment.  But I don't believe for a second that he is such.
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#35
(11-01-2019, 09:32 PM)Augustinian Wrote: Why even baptize infants if we can just presume that God will save them? This stems from the human conception of justice, not the Divine conception of justice.

Amen, and again, why not kill them in the womb to be absolutely certain they go to heaven? If they are born, and survive to the age of reason, they may end up in the other place.
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#36
(11-01-2019, 08:26 PM)Melkite Wrote: God has given us baptism as the only sure means of entrance into heaven. It's correct that we know of no other means.  But God is not bound by the rules that he sets up for us.  Holding to the logical view on this constrains God to natural law.  Yet, if he was able to create each of our souls from nothing, surely he can recreate our souls, without baptism, into a nature that is capable of entering heaven.  He can do this; the only question is if he does this.  As this is something that either would take place very near the moment of death, or presumably shortly thereafter, God owes us no confirmation that he does this.  The most one can say is we don't know that God does it.  But there is every reason to hope that he does.  It is absolutely heartbreaking to see, particularly parents, say that they "know" their child is either in limbo or hell because they are so molded into a legal system of defining things that they can't see their own God as existing and operating, or merely even able to exist and operate, outside of a legal system that was put in place solely to guide us.

Then what's the point of Baptism, if God could grant everyone grace right before death? What's the point of Confession, if God could just forgive us anyway and let us into heaven, since He's merciful? Why struggle against sin, if God's just going to let everyone into heaven anyway? It seems more cruel to give us all these rules, tell us to 'work out your salvation in fear and trembling', scare us with Hell and parables about sheep and goats and so forth, and then, when we die, say 'Just kidding about all that. Come on in.'

Saying the unbaptised go to heaven is a short step from believing in universal salvation. More importantly, it's something that the Church has never even proposed until very recently. There's a reason the traditional Missal has no funeral Mass for unbaptised children. There's also a reason the new Missal does. And if God does grant Heaven to deceased children, then abortion's saved more souls than all the missionaries in the Amazon.

Maybe it's not a comforting thought that a miscarried child won't be in heaven. But if it's true, it's worse for the Church to lie about it.
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#37
(11-01-2019, 10:47 PM)Paul Wrote: Then what's the point of Baptism, if God could grant everyone grace right before death? What's the point of Confession, if God could just forgive us anyway and let us into heaven, since He's merciful? Why struggle against sin, if God's just going to let everyone into heaven anyway? It seems more cruel to give us all these rules, tell us to 'work out your salvation in fear and trembling', scare us with Hell and parables about sheep and goats and so forth, and then, when we die, say 'Just kidding about all that. Come on in.'

Baptism is entry into the life of the Church.  You get baptized so you can receive the other sacraments, for the healing of soul and body.  They're medicines for the sickness of death, and baptism is the initial medicine.

Do you even hear what you're saying?  Do you really believe that God can't give someone grace right before death?  The rules are because we're sick with death.  We need them because, given our fallen nature, if we knew God would just forgive us in the end, we would make no effort in growing towards holiness.

Quote:Saying the unbaptised go to heaven is a short step from believing in universal salvation. More importantly, it's something that the Church has never even proposed until very recently. There's a reason the traditional Missal has no funeral Mass for unbaptised children. There's also a reason the new Missal does. And if God does grant Heaven to deceased children, then abortion's saved more souls than all the missionaries in the Amazon.

Sure, if you consider St. Gregory of Nyssa "very recently."

If I were to base my beliefs solely on logic, then I would also have to come to the conclusion that the East and the West don't worship the same God.  If I were going to form my beliefs on logic alone, then I would have to become Orthodox.
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#38
(11-01-2019, 08:50 AM)jack89 Wrote: Thank you all for replying.  Good to hear it's not just me.  

This also means that either the Council of Florence declaration was wrong or the current teaching is wrong.  Either way, a significant implication.

Yes - this is huge.  They can not both be true.  So which is not infallible?  I see no way out of that one.
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#39
(11-01-2019, 11:06 PM)Markie Boy Wrote:
(11-01-2019, 08:50 AM)jack89 Wrote: This also means that either the Council of Florence declaration was wrong or the current teaching is wrong.  Either way, a significant implication.
 
Yes - this is huge.  They can not both be true.  So which is not infallible?  I see no way out of that one.

Not huge at all. The Church has never infallibly declared that Florence was wrong. Vatican II specifically refrained from pronouncing anything infallibly, no Pope has ever infallibly denied it (of course, the Holy Ghost would prevent such heresy), the Catechism is not infallible. In other words, the Infallible, Papally approved Decrees of the Œcumenical Council of Florence are the Doctrine of the Church.

It's no different than Francis calling Scripture, the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, and his predecessors wrong on the death penalty. The Church's doctrine on the capital punishment has not changed, no matter what he says.
Jovan-Marya of the Immaculate Conception Weismiller, T.O.Carm.

Vive le Christ-roi! Vive le roi, Louis XX!
Deum timete, regem honorificate.
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#40
We must remember in the early Church there was debate over baptism of infants into the second century, so it's not totally clear. Can someone enter Heaven without baptism?

The thief on the cross next to Jesus did.

If Jesus would make an exception for a thief on a cross who was un-baptized - why would He not make an exception for an infant who is unbaptized? I'd like a direct answer to this question please.

At times people seem to hold the "rules" of the Church in higher esteem than the sovereign power of Jesus, and wish to bind Christ to their rules. There are some things that are normative in the Christian life that all should do if possible - but Jesus is not bound by those norms. Scripture tells us clearly He can do as He wills.

Would the rules of today's Church allow for the thief on the cross to go to Heaven - he wasn't baptized?
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