Scripture says they were without hope, without God?
ESV - 12 Remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.
For follow-up discussion and general commentary on the topic. Comments are sorted chronologically.
While some claim that everyone who lived before Jesus and died has been cast into hell. I seriously doubt this to be an actual fact. I have read some where in the bible that every will be judged with Gods perfect justice. He looks on the sinners heart and those who longed for something better than the world had to offer will be judged less harshly than those who had the opportunity of knowing God. Even early believers were passed into a place called " Abrahams Bosom" upon their death. Jesus went there and resurrected the believers found there upon his death.
I know this answer is incomplete and I am sure there are others who have abetter knowledge of the Word who can expound more fully than I can.
All of those Jews that were in a right relationship with God (through FAITH + WORKS), and died before the Resurrection of Christ, had their souls go to the "Paradise" side of Hell (Abraham's Bosom); which was EMPTIED & taken UP to Heaven by Christ Jesus at His Resurrection.
Gentiles could only come to God THRU being proselytized INTO JUDAISM, by the Jewish religious leaders.
And, contrary to a previous persons post, ALL non-Jews (Gentiles) were considered "GENTILE DOGS".
Judaism even had LAWS against Jews having ANYTHING to do with Gentiles, whatsoever; except for owning them as slaves.