What About My Father and Mother?"A man said to me, 'Brother, I can't take the doctrine you preach that one must be baptized to be saved, because it damns my father and mother who were not baptized.'
"Well, let us see. Do you think one must believe in Jesus Christ to be saved? 'Oh, yes,' he answers. Very well, I will just change my subject from baptism to faith. A Jew comes around and says, 'Mr. Preacher, I can't accept the doctrine you preach, that faith in Jesus is necessary to salvation, because my father and mother died without believing in Christ.'
"The Jew thinks as much of his father as you do of yours. By the same argument with which you eliminate baptism, because perchance it damns some of your ancestors, he also eliminates faith in Christ. Then I preach that the knowledge of God is necessary to salvation and a Chinese comes around, and says, 'I can't take the doctrine you preach, because it damns my poor father and mother, who died without the knowledge of God' — and there you see the whole plan of salvation is nullified by contingencies.
"Friends, I suggest that we leave the matter of clemency to the judge (a judge only has the power of clemency) and let us observe the law. I have no authority to preach clemency — I must preach what God commands men to do to be saved — and I know what the law says."