July 2014

Total Depravity 6

If fallen man is so radically corrupted by the fall, how do we explain and understand free will? Augustine affirmed that fallen man possesses free will, but lacks or has lost the freedom or liberty Adam and Eve enjoyed with God prior to the fall. Fallen man can and does make choices, but he lacks the ability and desire to be spiritually obedient. The free choices fallen man makes are proportionate to his innate desires, and fallen man’s natural and instinctive desire is to sin.

If fallen man is so radically corrupted by the fall, how do we explain and understand free will? Augustine affirmed that fallen man possesses free will, but lacks or has lost the freedom or liberty Adam and Eve enjoyed with God prior to the fall. Fallen man can and does make choices, but he lacks the ability and desire to be spiritually obedient. The free choices fallen man makes are proportionate to his innate desires, and fallen man’s natural and instinctive desire is to sin.

Total Depravity 5

Three passages from the New Testament Scriptures particularly highlight fallen man’s plight with radical depravity.

Mark 7:14-23 says:

And he (Jesus) called the people to him again and said to them, “Hear me, all of you, and understand: There is nothing outside a person that by going into him can defile him, but the things that come out of a person are what defile him.” And when he had entered the house and left the people, his disciples asked him about the parable. And he said to them, “Then are you also without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile him, since it enters not his heart but his stomach, and is expelled?” (Thus he declared all foods clean.) And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.” (Mark 7:14-23 ESV)

Three passages from the New Testament Scriptures particularly highlight fallen man’s plight with radical depravity.

Mark 7:14-23 says:

Total Depravity 4

Total Depravity may be viewed both negatively and positively. Negatively, the doctrine does not mean (1) man is as bad as he possibly could be; (2) that sinners do not have a consciousness about God; (3) that every sinner indulges in every kind of sin; or (4) that the sinner does not do good things in the opinion of other people.

Total Depravity may be viewed both negatively and positively. Negatively, the doctrine does not mean (1) man is as bad as he possibly could be; (2) that sinners do not have a consciousness about God; (3) that every sinner indulges in every kind of sin; or (4) that the sinner does not do good things in the opinion of other people.

Positively, the doctrine does mean that man is radically corrupted by sin in every part of his being including his intellect, emotions and will; (2) that there is nothing in sinful man that deserves praise and commendation before the righteous God.

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What is meant by the phrase Total Depravity?

Mark Twain once wrote, “"The more I know people, the more I love my dog."

Total Depravity refers to the plight and condition of fallen and sinful people before God. It is also referred to as original sin. As one commentator has written:

What is meant by the phrase Total Depravity?

Mark Twain once wrote, “"The more I know people, the more I love my dog."

Total Depravity refers to the plight and condition of fallen and sinful people before God. It is also referred to as original sin. As one commentator has written:

Total Depravity 2

Complementary and concurrent with the foundational Solas of the Protestant Reformation are the Doctrines of Grace contained in what is commonly referred to as Reformed Theology. Reformed Theology, so called because it is the theology (study of God) emerging from the Protestant Reformation, best reflects the teaching of Scripture regarding the plight of sinful man and salvation of the same by God alone. At the heart of Reformed Theology is the question of how sinful man is made acceptable before a righteous God.

Complementary and concurrent with the foundational Solas of the Protestant Reformation are the Doctrines of Grace contained in what is commonly referred to as Reformed Theology. Reformed Theology, so called because it is the theology (study of God) emerging from the Protestant Reformation, best reflects the teaching of Scripture regarding the plight of sinful man and salvation of the same by God alone.  At the heart of Reformed Theology is the question of how sinful man is made acceptable before a righteous God.

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The Protestant Reformation’s enduring legacy centers upon the doctrines of the “Solas.” The Reformers believed and taught these five truths and they remain indispensible to the health of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the growth of the church.  Why? The reason is because these five tenants did not originate with the Reformers of the Reformation. On the contrary, the Reformers rediscovered truth God had already given in the Scriptures and which had long been buried by the church.

The Centrality of the Gospel in Preaching 17

The centrality of the gospel in preaching is not only for the lost, but also for the redeemed. The gospel not only communicates our need of forgiveness from the penalty of sin, but the gospel also stresses God’s ongoing presence for all believers in need of strength in the battle against the power of sin and to live a life glorifying to God.

The centrality of the gospel in preaching is not only for the lost, but also for the redeemed. The gospel not only communicates our need of forgiveness from the penalty of sin, but the gospel also stresses God’s ongoing presence for all believers in need of strength in the battle against the power of sin and to live a life glorifying to God.       

The Centrality of the Gospel in Preaching 16

It is in the gospel that God reveals His righteousness. To reveal (ἀποκαλύπτω / apokalyptō) means “to uncover or to disclose or make known.” God has revealed to sinners their need for salvation through the preaching of the gospel and that this need for a perfect and alien righteousness is found only in Christ Jesus.

It is in the gospel that God reveals His righteousness. To reveal (ἀποκαλύπτω / apokalyptō) means “to uncover or to disclose or make known.” God has revealed to sinners their need for salvation through the preaching of the gospel and that this need for a perfect and alien righteousness is found only in Christ Jesus.

How does God reveal His righteousness of God through the gospel? By faith! The text continues to state that God reveals His righteousness “from faith to faith” (Romans 1:17, ESV). What is meant by the phrase “faith to faith?”

The Centrality of the Gospel in Preaching 15

Redemption is Christ purchasing our salvation through His shed blood (Acts 20:28; 1 Corinthians 6:19, 20; Galatians 3:13; 4:4, 5; Ephesians 1:7; Col. 1:14; 1 Timothy 2:5, 6; Titus 2:14; Hebrews 9:12; 1 Peter 1:18, 19; Revelation 5:9), Propitiation is Christ enduring the righteous wrath of God in place of sinners (Exodus 25:17; Leviticus 16; Hebrews 9:1-5; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 John 2:2; 4:1), and Justification is God declaring the sinner righteous on the basis of the imputed righteousness of Christ based upon His substitutionary atonement on the cross (Romans 5:1-10; 10:1-9; 2 Corinthians 5:21). All three are contained in the gospel.

Redemption is Christ purchasing our salvation through His shed blood (Acts 20:28; 1 Corinthians 6:19, 20; Galatians 3:13; 4:4, 5; Ephesians 1:7; Col.

The Centrality of the Gospel in Preaching 14

How then is spiritual regeneration and effectual calling accomplished? I submit through the centrality of the gospel in preaching wherein the Holy Spirit regenerates the fallen sinner thereby enabling him/her to repent of sin (2 Timothy 2:25) and turn by faith to Christ for salvation (Romans 3:31-28). The proclamation of the gospel, and the centrality of the same, is indispensable in applying the completed work of redemption, propitiation and justification which Christ accomplished on the cross.

How then is spiritual regeneration and effectual calling accomplished? I submit through the centrality of the gospel in preaching wherein the Holy Spirit regenerates the fallen sinner thereby enabling him/her to repent of sin (2 Timothy 2:25) and turn by faith to Christ for salvation (Romans 3:31-28). The proclamation of the gospel, and the centrality of the same, is indispensable in applying the completed work of redemption, propitiation and justification which Christ accomplished on the cross.

THINK AND ACT BIBLICALLY

PLACE FOR TRUTH

Reformation 21