"They are of those that rebel against the light; they know not the ways thereof, nor abide in the paths thereof" (Job 24:13).
A major stumbling block for those who reject Christ is the clear Biblical teaching that salvation is conditioned on believing on Christ as Savior. "Neither is there salvation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).
But what about sincere clean-living people who do not believe in Christ, and especially those who never hear of Christ?
Paul responds thus: "O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to Him that formed it, why hast thou made me thus?" (Romans 9:20). God is our Creator, and what He does is right, by definition. No one deserves salvation, for "all have sinned" (Romans 3:23), so God has a perfect right to say: "I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy" (Romans 9:15).
But is such arbitrariness just? Does it not go against our God-created sense of fairness? Why should some have full access to hearing the gospel, and others never hear at all?
"But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world" (Romans 10:18). The fact is that all men have received at least some light. The Lord Jesus Himself said: "This is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light. . . . But he that doeth truth cometh to the light" (John 3:19,21).
Cornelius was such a man. He did not rebel against the light he had, but prayed for more light. Therefore God sent Peter to him (Acts 10), and when he heard, he believed and was saved. Perhaps God will send other "Peters" to any other "Corneliuses" who have believed whatever light they have (in nature, conscience, etc.) with the needed additional light to lead them to Christ. HMM