27608Re: [apologetics and theology] "Age of accountablity"
- Mar 20, 2014On 3/20/2014 4:41 PM, Mike Jones wrote:
> the point was, you cannot reconcile your "we are accountable..........
> regardless" with those verses.
i can't???????????? How you know that?
> Jesus clearly taught that whether some act was a sin might depend on
> whether the person knew what they were doing was sinful.
Naaaa that ain't what He said at all. Besides Paul said that sin reigned
even apart from the law so whether or not one knows he's sinning is
irrelevant. Go rob a bank & tell the judge... "Chee judgiee me din't
know it was a crime."
> That is sufficient to blow your "accountable no matter what" theory.........
> out of the water.
Hardly. Otherwise what's such folks doing in Hell?
> If Jesus had not come and spoken to them, their acts that he condemned...........
> would have been chargeable to them as sin.
Correct and they were.
> That means they escape accountability for their act because they did........
> not know their act was sin.
> *From:* Jozinky <jozinky@...>
> *To:* email@example.com
> *Sent:* Thursday, March 20, 2014 6:55 AM
> *Subject:* Re: [apologetics and theology] "Age of accountablity"
> The verses you quote do not say "one is not accountable for sin if it be
> true that they did not know it was sin:"
> On 3/18/2014 3:26 PM, Mike Jones wrote:
> > Joz,
> > If you believe the bible to be the word of God, Jesus made it very
> > clear that one is not accountable for sin if it be true that they did
> > not know it was sin:
> > John 15:21-22 21
> > "But all these things they will do to you for My name's sake, because
> > they do not know the One who sent Me. 22 "If I had not come and
> > spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse
> > for their sin.
> > John 9:41 41 Jesus said to them, "If you were blind, you would have
> > no sin; but since you say, 'We see,' your sin remains.
> > I suggest you stop believing Paul died for your sins. You may
> > intellectually acknowledge that Christianity started with Jesus, but
> > in your works, you act like it started with Paul.
> > ----------------------------------------------------------
> > *From:* Jozinky <jozinky@...>
> > *To:* firstname.lastname@example.org
> > *Sent:* Monday, March 17, 2014 7:01 PM
> > *Subject:* Re: [apologetics and theology] "Age of accountablity"
> > On 3/17/2014 9:33 PM, Stephen Lord wrote:
> > >
> > > Age of accountability?
> > > A.Scripture affirms that there is a time in a child’s life that the
> > > Lord considers them innocent, not knowing right from wrong (cf. */Is.
> > > 7:15-16; Matt. 18:1-6/*).
> > .........
> > First, knowing or not knowing how to refuse evil and choose good does
> > not render a person unaccountable. Knowledge of good & evil has no
> > bearing on guilt. Men are guilty of sin whether or not they know they
> > sinned. Romans 2. Second the Isaiah passage is talking about Messiah who
> > never sinned so that has nothing to do with an age of accountability.
> > Third the Matt passage says nothing of an age of accountability.
> > ............
> > > B.However, at some point, a child moves from that stage of innocence
> > > to one of guilt (*/Pr. 22:15; /*
> > /*..........
> > */Prov 22:15 Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; the rod of
> > correction shall drive it far from him.
> > Verse says nothing about a child moving from that stage of innocence to
> > one of guilt /*¿
> > ............
> > */
> > > */Gen. 8:21/*).
> > ..............
> > 21 And the LORD smelled a sweet odor. And the LORD said in His heart, I
> > will never again curse the ground for man’s sake, because the
> > imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth. And I will not again
> > smite every living thing as I have done.
> > That one shows people are guilty right from their youth so no age of
> > accountability or a child moving from that stage of innocence to one of
> > guilt there either. All men are born under guilt and condemnation. Jesus
> > said so in John 3.
> > ...........
> > > We describe this transition with the non-Scriptural phrase, “the age
> > > of accountability,” often using biology (puberty) as a marker.
> > ..........
> > Correct. Non Scriptural; because Scripture does not teach an age of
> > accountability. The passages you give certainly do not.
> > ..
> > > C.Where did we come up with this notion that puberty marks that age of
> > > accountability when a child is no longer in that special realm of
> > > innocence and grace in God’s eyes?
> > .........
> > Goo question mon! Now consider these passages;
> > Psalm 51:5 Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my
> > mother conceive me.
> > Psalm 48:3 The wicked are estranged from the womb; they go astray from
> > the womb, speaking lies.
> > Isa 48:8 Yea, thou heardest not; yea, thou knewest not; yea, from of
> > old thine ear was not opened: for I knew that thou didst deal very
> > treacherously, and wast called a transgressor from the womb.
> > This is the Biblical doctrine of human depravity. Age of Accountability
> > negates that doctrine and has humans conceived and born in a state of
> > "innocency" with no sin/no accountability.
> > James
> > .
> > .......
> > > 1.Our social service agencies permit leaving a 12 year old home alone,
> > > but frown on leaving a younger child alone [Whiddon, 4-5].
> > > 2.Middle School is markedly different from Elementary School in
> > > approaches to instruction.
> > > 3.Long ago the rabbis set age 12 and 1 day for girls, and age 13 and 1
> > > day for boys as the point in their lives when they could make
> > > independent and legally binding vows (/Mishnah/, Niddah 5:6).
> > > 4.The /bar Mitzvah/, dating back to the 13^th century a.d., marks when
> > > a Jewish male, age 13 and 1 day, becomes a “son of the commandment”.He
> > > is now legally accountable to the Law and part of the /minyan/—the
> > > necessary number of 10 adult males required to form a synagogue.
> > > D.It is entirely probable that Christians simply and somewhat
> > > unconsciously borrowed from the Jewish traditions in arriving at an
> > > “age of accountability”.An examination of Scripture and biology,
> > > however, might give us a much different answer.(If there really is an
> > > “age of accountability” to begin with; perhaps it is a concept foreign
> > > to the Bible that we impose upon it, thus adding to the confusion.)
> > > the teen brain:
> > > A.*/Num. 13-14/*records the “Ten Spy Rebellion”.Ten of the twelve men
> > > who spied out the Promised Land for 40 days convinced almost all the
> > > Israelites that an invasion was folly.They would lose.They expressed
> > > the concern that their “children” (NIV, “little ones” ESV) would fall
> > > victim to the inhabitants of Canaan (*/14:2-5/*).
> > > B.As punishment for Israel’s lack of faith, God said _no one age 20 or
> > > older_ would enter the Promised Land save Joshua and Caleb.Everyone
> > > else would perish during 40 years of wilderness wandering, at the end
> > > of which their “little ones,” whom they said would be victims, would
> > > enter the land (*/14:28-33/*).
> > > 1.A legitimate question here is whether it was exclusively the
> > > enrolled military men aged twenty and up who were excluded from the
> > > Promised Land or if it was nearly everyone over twenty, but
> > > /especially/ the military men.The text is ambiguous on this point.
> > > 2.Passages like */Num. 14:29; 26:64-65; Dt. 2:14-16/* and */Josh. 5:4,
> > > 6/* place the emphasis on those who were enrolled to fight in the army
> > > without mention of any other Israelites.
> > > 3.Passages like */Num. 14:3, 31, 33/* (no allowance for their wives to
> > > enter the land); */32:8-14; Pss. 95:10-11; 106:24-26; Ezek. 20:15-18;
> > > 1 Cor. 10:1-5; Heb. 3:8-11, 15-19/* describe the entire generation
> > > that came up out of Egypt as dying in the wilderness rather than just
> > > the soldiers.
> > > C.Examine */Dt. 1:34-39/*.This is an inspired re-telling of the events
> > > of */Num. 13-14/*.Note particularly how God describes those age 19 and
> > > under whom he did not hold accountable for the Ten Spy Rebellion:“Your
> > > little ones and your children, who you say will be victims, who today
> > > have no knowledge of good and evil” (*/1:39/*).We must face squarely
> > > and honestly the fact that this is God’s own assessment of the 19 and
> > > under set in this instance—they have no knowledge of good and evil.
> > > D.To be frank, the passage has caused me a bit of struggle.I knew a
> > > thing or two about good and evil when I was 15, even younger.(Yet had
> > > I actually developed my own sense of good and evil, or was I simply
> > > conditioned by what I was told was right and wrong?)Either way, how
> > > could God say he would not hold the 19 and under set accountable,
> > > describing them as “little ones” having “no knowledge of good and
> > > evil”?This passage is not alone in marking age 20 as a threshold.
> > > 1.The ½ Shekel that was levied for the Sanctuary as atonement and
> > > ransom money was levied only on those 20 and over (*/Ex. 30:11-16;
> > > 38:26; 2 Chr. 24:4-10/*).Nineteen year old males did not need to make
> > > atonement.Why?(No women paid the atonement money.)
> > > 2.In the Roman Republic, military duty began at age 16.In ancient
> > > Athens it was 18.In the United States it is usually 18.God would not
> > > allow the enrollment of anyone under 20 for military duty (*/Num.
> > > 1:2-3, 45-56; 26:2; 2 Chr. 25:5/*).Why?
> > > 3.In the time of David, Levitical service began at age 20 (*/1 Chr.
> > > 23:24-32; 2 Chr. 31:17; Ezra 3:8/*).
> > > 4.What is so special in God’s eyes about age 20?Why did he use it as a
> > > threshold for punishment, atonement, military duty, Levitical
> > > service?Was it an arbitrary age or selected for a reason?
> > > E.Enter biology.Return, for a moment, to the law of circumcision on
> > > the 8^th day.Why not the 1^st day, or 3^rd , or 10^th ?“Two key
> > > elements that are necessary for normal clotting of blood—vitamin K and
> > > prothrombin—are not present in sufficient amounts in a male child
> > > until the eighth day of life.Without these, any bleeding can produce
> > > hemorrhages that might lead to serious health problems or death”
> > > [Barfield, 75].These clotting agents reach their highest concentration
> > > on the 8^th day and then begin to level off.In short, the Creator had
> > > some inside information regarding biology that he seems to have
> > > factored in to the command to be circumcised on the 8^th day.
> > > F.Just as biology may have played a role in God setting circumcision
> > > on the 8^th day, could it be that the Creator knew something of
> > > adolescent biology that factored in to his describing them as not yet
> > > really knowing good from evil?Is that why he let them off the hook at
> > > the Rebellion?Recent medical studies suggest that possibility [see
> > > Brownlee; Spinks].
> > > 1.Using Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI), neuroscientists
> > > have discovered that the brain, as a physical organ, is not fully
> > > developed in the average person until approximately age 20.We know
> > > that different parts of our bodies grow at different rates.The brain
> > > develops more slowly than the outer body.Just because a teen is
> > > outwardly as large as an adult does not mean that they are adult.Their
> > > brains are still maturing physically.
> > > 2.“The neural circuitry...isn’t completely installed in most people
> > > until their early 20’s.”
> > > 3.In teens, the prefrontal cortex, where judgment and “executive
> > > functions” are formed, is underdeveloped.In contrast, the limbic
> > > system, seat of emotions, is in hyperdrive.
> > > 4.fMRIs reveal that when teens are processing information like facial
> > > expressions, the prefrontal cortex is essentially inactive while the
> > > limbic is raging (consequently, they misread most of the facial
> > > expressions).Adults shown the same stimuli revealed more activity in
> > > the prefrontal cortex and less in the limbic region.Adults also
> > > correctly identified all the facial expressions used in the test, ¾’s
> > > of the teens did not!(The correct answer to the question, “What were
> > > you thinking?” when confronting a teen who did something unwise is
> > > they weren’t.They were going with their glands.)
> > > 5.In teens, the seat of judgment (prefrontal cortex) is physically
> > > immature, underdeveloped, and a mess of redundant neurons that
> > > actually befuddles information.In adults the bulk of those redundant
> > > neurons have been pruned, simplifying the information pathways.
> > > 6.Nerve shafts are coated with a myelin sheath that prevents the
> > > degrading of the signals as they are passed along (like the coating on
> > > coaxial cable).That sheathing isn’t in place until around age
> > > 20.(Multiple sclerosis involves the destruction of the myelin sheath,
> > > just to illustrate how important the sheath is.)
> > > 7.In short, adolescent brains lack certain physical structures fully
> > > adult brains have.The teen brain is wired differently than the adult
> > > brain (the limbic—emotional center—is larger than in adults, while the
> > > cognitive center is smaller).Teen brains even work differently than
> > > fully developed adult brains, processing information through the
> > > emotive more than the cognitive centers.
> > > G.Does all the above biological data mean that teens can’t and
> > > shouldn’t be held responsible and accountable?No.Rather, the
> > > discoveries reveal how critically important this stage is in the
> > > development of a child.The physical brain is pliable.“Teenagers are
> > > choosing what their brains are going to be good at—learning right from
> > > wrong, responsibility or impulsiveness, thinking or video games.”One
> > > neuroscientist called it “brain sculpting”—the activities and
> > > responsibilities given to a teen are actually influencing how the
> > > brain is pruning redundant neural connections and hard-wiring itself
> > > to be more efficient at those tasks.“So if a teen is doing music or
> > > sports or academics, those are the cells and connections that will be
> > > hard-wired.If they’re lying on the couch or playing video games or
> > > [watching] MTV, those are the cells and connections that are going to
> > > survive [the pruning process].”
> > > 1.Adolescence is the critical time to “train up a child in the way”
> > > he/she should go (*/Pr. 22:6/*).(The word “train” in this passage
> > > means to dedicate someone or something—set them on the path they need
> > > to take.In */Prov/*. there are only two paths:the way of the righteous
> > > or of the fool.)
> > > 2.Adolescence is especially the time to be training in morality,
> > > ethics, responsibility.
> > > 3.The key word here is /training/!People in training are not expected
> > > to perform their tasks at the same level as someone who has finished
> > > the training and gained further experience “on the job”.
> > > 4.The cognitive centers of the average teen brain are not yet fully
> > > operational; they are physically lacking in judgment.The Creator knows
> > > his biology.He made us that way.The “adult sized” teen is not yet
> > > fully mature mentally, cognitively and is actually overdeveloped
> > > emotionally.Their brain is not an adult brain and we cannot rightly
> > > expect them, given the way their “hardware” is wired, to think in
> > > adult ways.(This is why substance abuse at this age is even more
> > > damaging.)
> > > 5.Perhaps these biological facts entered in to why God said of those
> > > 19 and under that they are “little ones . . . who today have no
> > > knowledge of good and evil.”They don’t have the physical equipment for
> > > /full/ discernment.
> > > Barfield, Kenny./Why the Bible is Number 1:The World’s Sacred Writings
> > > in the Light of Science./Reprint,
> > > Eugene, OR:Wipf and Stock, 1997.
> > > Brownlee, Shannon.“Inside the Teen Brain.”/U.S.News & World Report,/ 9
> > > August 1999, 44-54.
> > > Danby, Herbert, trans./The Mishnah./Oxford:Oxford University Press,
> > 1933.
> > > /Encyclopaedia Judaica/, s.v. “Bar Mitzvah.”
> > > Spinks, Sarah, producer./Frontline:Inside the Teen Brain/.Available
> > > online at
> > > http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/teenbrain; accessed 25
> > > February 2003.
> > > Whiddon, Bob Jr., ed./From Children to Brethren./Westminster,
> > > CO:S.U.N. Publishing, 1992.
> > > Respectfully,
> > > Stephen Lord
> > >
> > --
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