Some have made the claim that man has the ability to respond to the Gospel without first being regenerated by the Holy Spirit. For this reason, when God decides that someone should not be saved, God must harden that man's heart in order to block man's ability to respond to the Gospel. The point of the above reasoning is to disprove total depravity. The reasoning goes this way: If total depravity were true, then God would not need to harden hearts in order to block this innate ability of man to respond to the Gospel. This argument places a free willer in a very awkward position. 1. It contradicts other scripture. Jesus says, "This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled him." The above reasoning would require Jesus to have said, "All men can come to me unless the Father disables him." 2. It contradicts the free will interpretation of other scriptures. Free willers argue that "God is not willing that any [person, ever] should not perish". But the consequence of the above reasoning is that God is not only willing that some perish, He has to take affirmative action to make darn sure they perish. After all, if God doesn't harden their hearts, they might use their innate ability to choose salvation of their own free will without the regeneration of the Holy Spirit. Obviously, anyone who argues that hardening disproves total depravity is going to have to reconcile that view with contradictory scriptures such as John 6:65, and give up their interpretation of passages such as John 3:16 and 2 Peter 3:9 altogether. You can't say in one breath that God is not willing that any person ever should perish, and in the next breath say that God must take action to make sure some people perish in order to counteract their innate ability to avoid that fate.