Is total depravity different than utter depravity?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Bronconagurski, Aug 31, 2012.

  1. Bronconagurski

    Bronconagurski
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    I was listening to R.C. Sproul this morning and he was speaking on the Noahic Covenant. He made a distinction between total depravity and utter depravity and used this verse: Genesis 6:3 (ESV)
    3 Then the LORD said, “My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.”

    He said that men are totally depraved, but they are not as depraved as they could be if the Holy Spirit were removed.

    My other question would be concerning the verse: What does it mean that my Spirit (notice the capital S) shall not abide in man forever? Does it imply that the Spirit abides in all men to a certain degree?
     
  2. Winman

    Winman
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    Not being a Calvinist, nor a disciple of R.C. Sproul, I cannot begin to tell you what he personally meant in this sermon.

    But I will say this, the KJB does not say what the ESV says.

    KJB- Gen 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also [is] flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

    ESV- Gen 6:3 Then the LORD said, "My Spirit shall not abide in* man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years."

    For those who say the KJB and the MVs are the same and say the same thing, here is a perfect example where they do not. The KJB does not say the Holy Spirit "abides in" men here. So the ESV gives a very different understanding.

    No one had the indwelling Holy Spirit except for perhaps a few prophets in the OT. No one received the indwelling Spirit until Jesus rose from the dead and was glorified.

    Jhn 7:38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.
    39 (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

    Now, this vere actually answers your question about Total Depravity. Many thousands of people believed on Jesus Christ before he rose from the dead and was glorified. Therefore, these persons all believed without the indwelling Spirit. And we know from Romans 8:9 that if any man have not the Spirit, that man is a fleshly man, he is in the flesh, not the Spirit.

    Rom 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

    This verse tells us we are not "in the flesh" if the Spirit of God "dwells in us". Therefore, if a man does not have the indwelling Holy Spirit, he must be "in the flesh".

    But we are clearly told in John 7:39 that these believers (and there were thousands) had not yet received the Spirit. Therefore, the natural man, a man in the flesh is ABLE to believe.

    We know for a fact the disciples believed on Jesus before they received the Spirit.

    Jhn 2:11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.

    The disciples believed on Jesus for over 3 years before he rose from the dead and they received the Spirit. They did not receive the Spirit until the 20th chapter of John.

    Jhn 20:22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

    All men are sinners and very wicked, but that does not make them unable to believe. The scriptures clearly and plainly show this.
     
    #2 Winman, Aug 31, 2012
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  3. The Archangel

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    the problem with what you say here--and what sends your entire discussion off in a weird trajectory--is that you base your thoughts on a hapax legomenon in the Old Testament.

    The Hebrew word yadon is one of those words that we really don't know what it means. The Septuagint is where the ESV (and the other modern versions) draws the translation of "abide," and it comes from the Greek word katameine. So, at the very least, those who translated the LXX, who knew Hebrew quite well, translated it "abide." So, the KJV is not reliable here.

    In any event, to draw an entire theology of the Holy Spirit and how He works from this one passage is not only dangerous, it breaks one of the cardinal rules of the study of biblical theology.

    This simply isn't so.

    1 Samuel 11:16--And the Spirit of God rushed upon Saul when he heard these words, and his anger was greatly kindled.

    1 Samuel 16:44--Now the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and a harmful spirit from the Lord tormented him.

    Psalm 51:10-11
    [10] Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and renew a right spirit within me.
    [11] Cast me not away from your presence,
    and take not your Holy Spirit from me.

    Obviously, the Holy Spirit did, in fact, indwell several notable people in the Old Testament, and not just prophets. I've provided two easy examples--David and Saul.

    The Archangel
     
  4. Bronconagurski

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    You are correct concerning the LXX, as Brenton's English translation also reads as follows:

    Gen 6:4 And the Lord God said, My Spirit shall certainly not remain among these men for ever, because they are flesh, but their days shall be an hundred and twenty years.



    As concerning the Holy Spirit in the O.T., we also have this from Isaiah concerning God's people, Israel:

    Isa 63:8 For he said, "Surely they are my people, children who will not deal falsely." And he became their Savior.
    Isa 63:9 In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them; in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old.
    Isa 63:10 But they rebelled and grieved his Holy Spirit; therefore he turned to be their enemy, and himself fought against them.
    Isa 63:11 Then he remembered the days of old, of Moses and his people. Where is he who brought them up out of the sea with the shepherds of his flock? Where is he who put in the midst of them his Holy Spirit,
    Isa 63:12 who caused his glorious arm to go at the right hand of Moses, who divided the waters before them to make for himself an everlasting name,
    Isa 63:13 who led them through the depths? Like a horse in the desert, they did not stumble.
    Isa 63:14 Like livestock that go down into the valley, the Spirit of the LORD gave them rest. So you led your people, to make for yourself a glorious name.
    Isa 63:15 Look down from heaven and see, from your holy and beautiful habitation. Where are your zeal and your might? The stirring of your inner parts and your compassion are held back from me.
     
    #4 Bronconagurski, Sep 1, 2012
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  5. Winman

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    I did not build my theology from Gen 6:3, I showed from scripture that believers did not have the indwelling Holy Spirit in the OT. I mentioned that there were a few exceptions such as prophets.


    Samuel was a prophet. And both David and king Saul prophesied. I said in my first post that a few people such as prophets had the indwelling Spirit.

    1 Sam 10:10 And when they came thither to the hill, behold, a company of prophets met him; and the Spirit of God came upon him, and he prophesied among them.
    11 And it came to pass, when all that knew him beforetime saw that, behold, he prophesied among the prophets, then the people said one to another, What is this that is come unto the son of Kish? Is Saul also among the prophets?
    12 And one of the same place answered and said, But who is their father? Therefore it became a proverb, Is Saul also among the prophets?
    13 And when he had made an end of prophesying, he came to the high place.

    This scripture does not say king Saul had the indwelling Holy Spirit, only that the Spirit came upon him. But king Saul was a prophet, if only for a time.

    But not until Jesus rose from the dead and was glorified did all believers receive the indwelling Holy Spirit.

    Romans 8:9 tells us that a man who does not have the indwelling Spirit is "in the flesh", yet we absolutely know for a fact that the disciples and many thousands of people believed on Jesus before he was crucified and rose again, and before all believers were given the indwelling Holy Spirit. This proves that the natural man in the flesh has the ABILITY to believe.

    We know for a fact that the disciples (except Judas) all believed on Jesus after he performed his first miracle, though these disciples did not receive the indwelling Holy Spirit until over three years later in John chapter 20. Again, this proves the natural man has the ability to believe the gospel.
     
    #5 Winman, Sep 1, 2012
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  6. HeirofSalvation

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    The Holy Spirit did not permanently indwell anyone in the OT...The H.S. would come upon them, and then depart...moreover, as Winman said, this is usually in connection with Prophecying. Saul WAS a prophet, in that when the Spirit did "come", he prophesied.

    1Sa 10:11 And it came to pass, when all that knew him beforetime saw that, behold, he prophesied among the prophets, then the people said one to another, What [is] this [that] is come unto the son of Kish? [Is] Saul also among the prophets?
    1Sa 18:10 ¶ And it came to pass on the morrow, that the evil spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played with his hand, as at other times: and [there was] a javelin in Saul's hand.
    1Sa 19:20 And Saul sent messengers to take David: and when they saw the company of the prophets prophesying, and Samuel standing [as] appointed over them, the Spirit of God was upon the messengers of Saul, and they also prophesied.
    1Sa 19:21 And when it was told Saul, he sent other messengers, and they prophesied likewise. And Saul sent messengers again the third time, and they prophesied also.


    David also Prophesied, and was called a prophet:
    2Sa 23:1 ¶ Now these [be] the last words of David. David the son of Jesse said, and the man [who was] raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet psalmist of Israel, said,
    2Sa 23:2 The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and his word [was] in my tongue.


    Act 2:29 Men [and] brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day.
    Act 2:30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;


    It is ever thus in the OT...Sampson is an excellent example

    Jdg 14:6 And the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and he rent him as he would have rent a kid, and [he had] nothing in his hand: but he told not his father or his mother what he had done.
    Jdg 14:19 ¶ And the Spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he went down to Ashkelon, and slew thirty men of them, and took their spoil, and gave change of garments unto them which expounded the riddle. And his anger was kindled, and he went up to his father's house.
    Jdg 16:28 ¶ And Samson called unto the LORD, and said, O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray thee, and strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes.
     
  7. Bronconagurski

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    HOS, you posted, "The Holy Spirit did not permanently indwell anyone in the OT..."

    I am not sure that I agree with that. Genesis 5:24 (ESV)
    24 Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.

    Just because it appears that the Holy Spirit left some O.T. people, does not mean He did not permanently indwell any of them.

    At the advice of Dr. Fowler, who teaches at L.U., I have bought an out of print book titled, "The Holy Spirit in the O.T." by Leon Wood. I hope to be enlightened more on the subject after studying the book.
     
  8. HeirofSalvation

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    That is true...it does not mean that necessarily, but it appears to me, that the H.S. always appeared or "came upon" and then left...that the permanent "indwelling" of the Holy Spirit is a New Testament phenomenon. I too would like to learn more about it. What do you think of that book so far?
     
  9. Winman

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    Yes, in most OT scripture the Spirit is said to "come upon" or "rest" on believers. There is not much evidence that any believer in the OT had the permanent indwelling Spirit as believers in the NT have.

    Num 11:16 And the LORD said unto Moses, Gather unto me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom thou knowest to be the elders of the people, and officers over them; and bring them unto the tabernacle of the congregation, that they may stand there with thee.
    17 And I will come down and talk with thee there: and I will take of the spirit which is upon thee, and will put it upon them; and they shall bear the burden of the people with thee, that thou bear it not thyself alone.

    This verse implies only that the Spirit was "upon" Moses, and that he did not have the permanent indwelling Holy Spirit. We see also that the Spirit was placed "upon" the 70 elders.

    This is why David after he sinned prayed the Holy Spirit would not be taken from him.

    Psa 51:11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.

    NT believers do not have to fear that the Holy Spirit will be taken from them, Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would come and abide with us forever, and that he (the Spirit) would be "in you".

    Jhn 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
    17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

    Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would abide with us forever.

    Jesus also seems to distinguish that up to this point the Holy Spirit had dwelled "with" the disciples, but when he sends the Holy Spirit he would be "in you". This agrees with Romans 8:9.

    This seems to argue that the Holy Spirit had only an external influence upon believers to this time, but afterward would be an internal influence.
     
  10. Dr. Bob

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    Jesus spoke of the wonderful "gift" He is giving to His Bride - the holy Spirit of God. "He that is WITH you shall be IN you" Jesus said. That permanent indwelling Spirit is 100% different with us than Moses or Abraham or David. Bless His Name!!

    To the op, I see the Hebrew translated best as the Spirit "sitting in judgment" rather that simply "in" people in Gen 6. diyn = "umpire" or "referee" as activity of the holy Spirit with mankind in general. (Edit: Sorry my Hebrew letters came up blank.)

    The Spirit of God today is in US (indwelling) and in the world (restraining evil, convicting of sin, regenerating the elect, etc). The awful day is coming when that "restrainer" of evil is taken away. Of course WE will not be here (obvious) and while some will be regenerated during that time (and martyred), the overall restraining activities of the holy Spirit will stop.

    If we think it is bad on planet earth now, just wait for THAT day. Ugh.
     
    #10 Dr. Bob, Sep 1, 2012
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  11. Bronconagurski

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    I am just getting started with it, but in the preface he asserts that the indwelling, sealing, and filling of the Spirit did take place in the O.T. He admits the Holy Spirit came upon people and left, but he says that exactly what that meant is seldom defined by people that say the Spirit only indwells continuosly after Pentecost. Sounds like it will interesting if nothing else.
     

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