What doctrinal views actually exalt the nature of fallen man? Most seem to think that those of us who affirm man's free will (responsibility) exalt the nature of man. They argue that because mankind is born unable to respond that somehow means he is worse and if he is able to respond that somehow we think too highly of men. But which is actually worse in our own system of justice? 1. A man born with a mental disability making him violent, prone to rage and unable to control his behavior who murder others? OR 2. A man born sane and healthy who rationally deliberates and chooses to murder another out of greed, jealousy or spite? Obviously the latter is considered much worse in our system of justice. We might put the first guy in a hospital instead of a jail as 'innocent by reason of insanity,' but not the second guy. He is RESPONSIBLE...CULPABLE. So, lets apply this analogy to our doctrinal perspectives. Which view actually has a higher view of humanity? 1. A man born hated by God, total unable to even respond to God's appeal to be reconciled, enslaved by his inborn nature to sin, unable to willingly repent of his sin even when asked to by God's own words, sealed from birth in this totally depraved and hopeless condition for all of eternity. OR 2. A man born fallen, yet love by his Creator; sinful, yet being pursued by a loving merciful Savior genuinely appealing for his return to what he was originally created for; enslaved, but provided a means for escape; an enemy, but given the hope for reconciliation. And in the face of this truth, this love, this merciful and gracious provision, he chooses of his OWN free and sane will to deliberately walk away from the creator who loves and provides for him. I don't know about you but the second dude seems a lot worse and more deserving of punishment than the first. Sure, the first, due to the federal headship of Adam, does deserved hell, I'm not arguing otherwise, but in light of the second guy, you almost just feel sorry for the first guy. I mean, he was born like that. He had no way out. I know, I know, I'm not saying he deserved a way out, don't get caught up on that, as that is not my point. I'm saying that a free will view of mankind is not higher, but its much much lower than the alternative.