of Jesus
I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hidden these things from the wise
and understanding and revealed them to babes; yea, Father, for such was thy gracious will


How will people who cannot read, adults who are not
literate, get to heaven?


Jesus did not speak of reading him; he often spoke of hearing him, for the illiterate have ears like the great majority.

The literacy rate in First Century Israel was surely much less than it is in modern times.  The New Testament record indicates that Jesus did all of his teaching orally, speaking to individuals, small groups, and large crowds.  When he ascended into heaven, he left no written record.  This is the evidence of scripture and of all historical research to this date.  What he left behind was the Logos implanted in the minds and hearts of his disciples, with a message to go to all nations and do what he had come to earth to do:
[21]  As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.
There is no record that he instructed them to write anything.  It is obvious that, from the very beginning of the gospel proclamation, our Lord presented it in a way that did not require the ability to read.  Thus, from the very beginning, the proclamation was exclusively oral.  This is the beginning of "preaching" according to which a person orally expounds the gospel.  A good example of this activity is that of Philip and his testimony to the Ethiopian Eunuch.  They had the OT Prophets and the Torah and the Psalms written on scrolls, which the Eunuch was reading as he rode along.   There was no written gospel, no "gospel tract" that Philip could hand him, so he got into the carriage with him and orally gave his testimony.  This man was literate, but it did not help him to become acquainted with Jesus, whose gospel was not yet recorded.

The apostles and other early disciples expected the return of Jesus in Glory very soon.  He had sought to dissuade them of this early expectation, asserting that no one knew the day or the hour, but they were not satisfied with that and they kept looking for his
immediate return.  He had emphasized the need for preparedness for the event at any time, and they must have have interpreted this to mean that he would return quite soon.  This expectation greatly accelerated the expansion of the message out into the nations because they felt it their duty to preach to as many persons as possible before his return.  So, the message continued to be orally proclaimed without a written record.

After a few years, the disciples realized a the need for a written record.  With the passage of time, and given the fact that they were human as we are and therefore prone to forgetfulness as the years passed, they could sense the accuracy of the Word was slipping.  So they began to write down the sayings of Jesus in the earliest records, that today are distinguished from others as "sayings gospels."  These documents contained no narrative material.  One such gospel that has survived is the Gospel of Thomas, that you can find for sale today.  They seem to have felt these to be sufficient for several more years, for they preserved the vital record of Jesus' precious utterances.  No one knows, but as more time passed and fewer and fewer disciples remained on earth who had followed Jesus and heard his message first hand, they must have realized a need to put the sayings into a narrative that both included his Word and described his deeds with the circumstances thereof.  I find, in reading the gospels, that the setting of an utterance -- the context -- often influences the interpretation.  The early disciples must have come to realize this also and so several of them were eventually led to compile narrative gospels.  These include, of course, the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, and others not included in the Bible, that have survived the centuries.  The first written and distributed of these is believed by most to be Mark, but again, no one is sure.  The earliest probable date for Mark is considered by most to be 65 AD.  Yet again, no one is sure!

Please excuse!  You didn't ask me for a history of the gospels, but a brief sketch seems appropriate to your question.  The facts are that Jesus made no provision for literary distribution of the gospel, nor did he leave instructions to other to write.  Nevertheless, after a few years, people began to feel that he would have them write, and so they did.  I believe the Holy Spirit called men to do this as soon as it became clear that a written record was going to be essential if Jesus' statement were to be assured:
[31] Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
The question of what happens after death to people who never hear the gospel, or read it, is not a new one.  It existed when Jesus came into the world, and when he left it.  The fact is that relatively few people, literate or illiterate, have yet heard the gospel.

Your question assumes that everyone who has never heard the gospel must go to hell.  That is not the case, and anyone who listens carefully to our Lord and asks of him this question as she reads can learn better.  This belief, that I once preached from Baptist pulpits -- may our Father forgive me -- is false.  You are correct and you display a true acquaintance with the Lord when you say,
I am sure God will not say "ok "Tim" you have to go to hell
because you did not read the Bible.
From the Lord I have learned that a "good person, man or woman" in any age and time -- that is, a person sensitive to wrongdoing who is sorry for her or his misdeeds (sins) and who confesses them, and who forgives others who have offended her or him, will be forgiven and will be received into the Father's house as . . . a servant.  But our Father is not looking for servants, though in his mercy he accepts them. He did not send his Son to earth to suffer and recruit servants.  He has from the very beginning of creation wanted only one thing of it, which is that it produce sons and daughters!  He sent Jesus to earth to gather his sons and daughters as the Good Shepherd gathers the sheep into his Little Flock, and lead them back to the Father's house.

It follows that, to become sons and daughters of the Father, one must be born of his seed -- that is, born from above.  It is a mystery to us, but his Word -- the Logos of Jesus -- is the seed that, sown in (impregnating) the honest and good heartbears fruit as a son or daughter of the Father in heaven.  Read Jesus carefully and prove what I say.  Also, you may want to read my papers
(five) on Salvation History beginning with, http://voiceofjesus.org
/salvationhistory1.html.  In these papers I direct your attention to the relevant utterances of the Lord.

Please forgive this lengthy reply, and

Peace to you,