Take the following pattern/formula, which we see repeated all over the site:
Is there any teaching about whether anyone with (insert limitation that would prevent them from hearing/understanding the Gospel here) can get to heaven?
- What does the Bible say about people with mental illness?
- Where do children go when they die if they are born into sin?
- Biblically, is there such a thing as innocent by reason of mental defect?
- What does the Roman Catholic church teach about those who die having never heard of Christ?
- What happens to people who have never heard about Jesus?
- What of all those who just don't know
- When are children held accountable for their sins?
- Is an intellectual comprehension of the gospel by the earthly mind required for salvation?
In my mind, these are all pretty much the same question (The formula question posited at the beginning of this post), with the variables changed... Perhaps it could be broken down into two questions:
- What about those who have never heard because ___________?
- What about those that do not have the capacity to understand because _________?
The difference between each is miniscule, and the answer pretty much remains the same no matter what you plug into the blank. Are these considered to be duplicates, or do we need to have an exact duplicate for it to count?
On the one hand, I can see why these might be hard to search if the specific instance changes, but that's also part of the point. Closing as a duplicate isn't the kiss of death for a question. Doing so automatically links to the previous question, so that if a user searches for either, they will still end up at the original answer.