WHO DIED IN INFANCY
Andres C. Guevara Jr.
October 6, 2004
1. Nowhere in the Bible teaches about the salvation of souls of those children who die during infancy. There are only implications. There are questions who can be answered when we are in heaven---Deuteronomy 29:29.
2. If the Bible is clear that God is teaching us that all children who die in infancy go to heaven, many abused and wrongly used that view by justifying their sinful act like abortion.
3. Here are some several Spiritual implications to consider that those who die in infancy do go to heaven.
a. God commends the childlike qualities of trustfulness (Matthew 18:5,6,10,14). Here, we see that Christ teaches the importance of the faith of those little ones as He cares for them that they should not perish instead to be with the heavenly Father.
b. God desires that children come unto Him (Matthew 19:14; Mark 10:14). We can sense here that heaven is open for the souls of those little children who are so welcomed by Christ. Coming to Jesus Christ is His desires to give life eternal (John 5:40).
c. God loves all mankind, this includes children (John 3:16). There is no exception for all living souls which means age does not matter.
d. The provision of the death of Christ is as extensive as the sin of Adam (Romans 5:14). If the Bible teaches us that by one man sin come into all mankind, and by sin all person in this earth experiences death or spiritual separation from God (Romans 5:12). Since we are all sinners in nature including children (Psalms 51:5), therefore like us these little ones needed redemption. Christ died for all (Romans 5:8) for all have sinned including children (Romans 3:23).
e. If the consequences of Adam's sin (death) can pass to the infants before they are able to make a conscious choice, the benefits of Christ's work may also (Romans 5:19-21). Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound. God's abounding grace of salvation has its deepest effect even during infancy days.
f. David, who knew of the resurrection, had confidence of seeing his infant again (II Samuel 12:23; Psalms 16). It appears this child was sick at birth, and died prior to the 8th day, so the child went to heaven without circumcision or having been baptized (II Samuel 12:18). Here we can deal with some of the erroneous doctrine that baptism is necessary for salvation or the so-called infant baptism. It deals also those deceiving doctrine of teaching that salvation lies on our good works or obedience to the law since this infant of David do not undergo circumcision. Above all, it is so clear in the scriptures that this infant of David went to heaven as King David claimed.
4. Let us remember the just nature of God and His actions toward men.
a. The nature of God's punishment presumes an awareness of sin. Therefore, infants and even children who are still in their unconscious state toward sins are clearly safe from eternal torment. If they reached the age of accountability as knowing the right and wrong, they are now under God's condemnation.
b. There were Old Testament sacrifices for the mentally incompetent (Ezekiel 45:20). In those days, there will special consideration given to those mentally incompetent by having the sacrifices for the sin offering in their stead. In our days, we have the inborn special child, the Mongoloid, the retarded, etc.
c. Faith (properly understood as receiving) makes reception of the new nature entirely possible.
d. God provides only one way of salvation, if they are saved, they are saved through the Lord Jesus Christ as we are. It is all by the grace and mercy of God through His Son Jesus Christ. The effect of His blood atonement and His love beyond measure even to the infant.
e. Repentance is no problem, as a baby has no guilt of sin to repent of. Paul said they testify the salvation "both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ."-Acts 20:21. James said, "to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin."-James 4:17. Infant conceived in sin but no knowledge of sin. Infant has no guilt.
f. Nowhere in the Bible indicates that we should have concern for those who die in infancy. (In Ezekiel 3:18, the watchman was concerned with the lost who could hear and not babies). We love and grieve for those infants who died earlier but we should not worry of their souls since they are eternally with the Lord in heaven.
g. It is also important to remember that no one is over condemned because of original sin, they are condemned because of personal sin (James 2:10, etc.) Yes, infant are conceived in iniquity (Psalms 51:5), but infant are not personally aware about what is wrong and what is sin.
5. If a child is old enough to know and understand about sin, the child is old enough to trust Christ. Parents need to start early in teaching their children about God's plan of salvation. There is a great responsibility and accountability lies on the parent's negligence to share the gospel openly with his/her child. Parents should check up regularly the salvation of their children especially those who grew up in the Sunday school and having bible oriented family.
Parents who lost children in infancy should be comforted in the faith that their children are with the Lord in heaven. Infants can be viewed as safe but not yet saved. Also parents should not be in a hurry to have their children be baptized. Parents should take whatever time is necessary to make sure that their children are saved and they understand baptism, prior to it.