Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Age of Accountability

What IS the age of accountability?

We just talked about how and why Jesus said, Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven." {Matthew 18:} This brought up the question,

"What IS the age of accountability. Is it Biblical? Is there a specific age mentioned? How do you know, that when a child dies, it goes to Heaven? Does the Bible not say "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" Romans 3:23 Does the Bible not say "He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God." John 3:18? Are you saying that there is an age of accountability out of emotion, or Biblical fact?"

Well? Lets look at this. Yes, it is scriptural that we have all Sinned. That we are born into Sin. However, as a child, we have no knowledge of Sin. We cannot be held accountable for doing something when we have no knowledge that what we are doing is Sin.

In...

James 4:
17 So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.
If you do not yet know the difference between good and evil, then how can you be held accountable? Let's look into the Word. God tells us that there is a distinct difference in the Knowledge of Sin and not. 

Deuteronomy 1:
39 And as for your little ones, who you said would become a prey, and your children, who today have no knowledge of good or evil, they shall go in there. And to them I will give it, and they shall possess it.
"Your children, who today have no knowledge of good or evil," Then in...

Isaiah 7:
16 For before the boy knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good, the land whose two kings you dread will be deserted.
"For before the boy knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good," So we see that there is clearly a time in life that we are excused. That we are innocent. Without knowledge of good and evil, just like Adam and Eve.

Genesis 2:
15 And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:

17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
It wraps up with this...
25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
So Adam and Eve had no knowledge of good and evil. They simply were. They loved God and each other. They loved God's creation. They had no cares, shame, nothing but peace, joy, love, happiness. They were innocent. Untouched by evil. Pure.

A child is the same way. They have no hate, fear, greed, or anything else. They have no knowledge of good and evil. Right and wrong. They simply are. Then in the next chapter, we see the fall of Adam.

Genesis 3:
1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:

5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
So you see, Adam's Sin was the same of that of Satan himself. The desire to become God. It was this Sin, the original Sin, that caused Sin to enter into the World, and it was since then, and ever since, that all Mankind is born into Sin. But Children still have that original innocents. That purity that Adam and Eve had.

Now in Ezekiel, it clearly states that it is not, as some teach, the Sins of the Father being visited on the Sons, ETC. He who Sins, is guilty, and held accountable, those that do not, are held innocent. In..

Ezekiel 18:
18 As for his father, because he cruelly oppressed, spoiled his brother by violence, and did that which is not good among his people, lo, even he shall die in his iniquity.

19 Yet say ye, Why? doth not the son bear the iniquity of the father? When the son hath done that which is lawful and right, and hath kept all my statutes, and hath done them, he shall surely live.

20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.

21 But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die.

22 All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live.

23 Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord God: and not that he should return from his ways, and live?

24 But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die.

25 Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal?

26 When a righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and dieth in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die.

27 Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive.
Read that again.. "The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him." Again? "The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him." You could have Hitler for your Earthly Father, if you follow in his footsteps, you will receive the same condemnation as he. YET? If you turn from his ways, and become saved, then you will not suffer the same condemnation, rather, you shall be blessed with eternal life.

So we see, there is a very distinct difference between knowledge of Sin and innocence. But is there a set age? Does God tell us that once a child becomes 12, 13, or 21, we are then held accountable? Well, there are a few different theories on this.

First, in the Jewish Tradition, we see that the age of 12, 13, is said to be the age of accountably. But there is no Biblical evidence to back that up. Islam? 15. Hinduism? Some 7, others 13. In fact, many cultures, Religious and not, have a certain age where the Child becomes an Adult and accountable for their actions. But is any of it Biblical?

Here is something to think about. There are a couple of passages, that you should look at. First...

Numbers 14:
29 Your carcases shall fall in this wilderness; and all that were numbered of you, according to your whole number, from twenty years old and upward which have murmured against me.
Then in...

Numbers 32:
10 And the Lord'S anger was kindled the same time, and he sware, saying,

11 Surely none of the men that came up out of Egypt, from twenty years old and upward, shall see the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob; because they have not wholly followed me:
"From twenty years old and upward." Could 20, be that magic age? Perhaps. But then you have the simple truth that not all people mature at the same rate. My Two year old just wrote his name on the wall with a crayon. Some kids are not ready to write their name when they get to School. Some can solve complicated mathematical equations, others, can't figure out 2+2=4.

Is there an age that can be mathematically calculated, scientifically solved, Biblically stated? I do not believe so. I believe God sees the age of accountability the same way He sees YOU. He knows your heart. He knows your mind. He knows when, how, and what, you understand. I do not believe there are ANY Children in hell. Nor do I believe that there are any who may be mentally challenged.

I believe it is just this simple. Your are born. You grow. You learn. At some point, you reach an age where you are able to "refuse the evil and choose the good." It is THEN and only THEN, where you have reached the point where you are accountable. THEN, be it 20, 15, 13, 12, 10, or even younger than that, "So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin." applies. THEN and only THEN, does "He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God." apply. How can it before you are able to understand who HE even is?

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

Until next time, be blessed, be a blessing, and Jesus IS Lord of all!

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