Man's Inability??

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by rufus, Feb 17, 2003.

  1. rufus

    rufus
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    Inability.
    I. State the three main elements involved in the consequences entailed by the sin of Adam upon his posterity.

    These are—
    1st. The guilt, or just penal responsibility of Adam’s first sin or apostatizing act, which is imputed or judicially charged upon his descendants, whereby every child is born into the world in a state of antenatal forfeiture or condemnation.

    2nd. The entire depravity of our nature, involving a sinful innate disposition inevitably leading to actual transgression.

    3rd. The entire inability of the soul to change its own nature, or to do anything spiritually good in obedience to the divine law.

    II. What three great types of doctrine on the subject of human ability to fulfill the law of God have always coexisted in the church?

    1st. Pelagian.—(a.) Moral character can be predicated only of volitions. (b.) Ability is always the measure of responsibility. (c.) Hence every man has always plenary power to do all that it is his duty to do. (d.) Hence the human will alone, to the exclusion of the interference of any internal influence from God, must decide human character and destiny. The only divine influence needed by man or consistent with his character as a self–determined agent is an external, providential, and educational one.

    2nd. Semipelagian.—(a.) Man’s nature has been so far weakened by the fall that it cannot act aright in spiritual matters without divine assistance. (b. ) This weakened moral state which infants inherit from their parents is the cause of sin, but not itself sin in the sense of deserving the wrath of God. (c.) Man must strive to do his whole duty, when God meets him with cooperative grace, and renders his efforts successful. (d.) Man is not responsible for the sins he commits until after he has enjoyed and abused the influences of grace.

    3rd. Augustinian.—Which was adopted by all the original Protestant Churches, Lutheran and Reformed. (a.) Man is by nature so entirely depraved in his moral nature as to be totally unable to do anything spiritually good, or in any degree to begin or to dispose himself thereto. (b.) That even under the exciting and suasory influences of divine grace the will of man is totally unable to act aright in cooperation with grace, until after the will itself is by the energy of grace radically and permanently renewed. (c.) Even after the renewal of the will it ever continues dependent upon divine grace, to prompt, direct, and enable it in the performance of every good work.

    rufus [​IMG]
     
  2. 4study

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    rufus,

    Concerning I;
    ...and why should anyone believe this?

    Concerning II;
    ...history of religion is irrelevant to God's Word. Religion=worldly wisdom, God's Revelation=Godly wisdom.
     
  3. Yelsew

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    Excellent response 4study.
     
  4. Aki

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    who therefore caused man's inability? if it is the imputation of the first sin that God judicially imputed on man, wouldn't it be correct to say that God caused all men's inability to believe, as was caused by His imputation of the first sin?

    if that's the case, and if God would have only a selected few for effectual calling, isn't it simply pure sovereignty and none of grace?

    wouldn't it be the case that men actually had no choice of salvation or condemnation?

    wouldn't it be double predestination?

    isn't it cruel that God will impute the first sin or guilt to everyone thus causing the inability to choose for God of everyone and then say it's grace because God made an effectual calling on a selected few?

    it would help for Calvinists here to clarify this matter: did God impute the first sin to everyone? and did God caused everyone's inability due to God's imputation of that sin?
     
  5. William C

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    What is Total Inability?

    Unable to see, hear, understand or receive the things of God.

    This is taught in scripture. Romans 10 and 11; Acts 28:25-28; John 12:37-41; Matt. 21:42-43 (to name a few)

    I'll quote a short one for you to read:
    Mark 4:10-12:
    When he was alone, the Twelve and the others around him asked him about the parables. He told them, 'The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those on the outside everything is said in parables so that, 'they may be ever seeing but never perceiving, and ever hearing but never understanding; otherwise they might turn and be forgiven.'"

    Total Inability is Hardening! One cannot be hardened until he has refused the things of God, as the Israelites had done for generations. The Gentiles had never been invited into covenant and the scripture clearly teaches that Israel (except the Remnant) are the only ones who receive this Hardening.

    Notice what this passage says! "otherwise they might turn and be forgiven" In other words, if not for the active hardening of God they "might turn and be forgiven," therefore those who are not being hardened (the Remnant and the Gentiles) can turn and be forgiven.

    Calvinism doesn't make sense in light of God's clear teaching on the Hardening of Israel!

    Bill
     
  6. rufus

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    4study said:
    Good to hear from you again, friend! Since you were the only ONE to come close to understanding and responding to my post, I will respond ONLY to YOU!

    I humbly suggest we should believe I (One) because of Romans 5, Ephesians 2, Romans 3, etc.

    I lovingly remind us that II (Two) presents various interpretations of the issue in history. Since those interpretations are inconsistent with each other, we ought to understand how they were adduced and we then ought to BELIEVE the ONE most consistent with the LIVING REVELATION OF GOD.

    Shalom waw Shalom
    rufus [​IMG]
     
  7. romanbear

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    Hi Rufus;
    I think this quote below is untrue and Just like the Catholic's you assume that all come from the Catholic Church. :eek:
    ------------------------------------------------
    3rd. Augustinian.—Which was adopted by all the original Protestant Churches, Lutheran and Reformed.
    ------------------------------------------------
    You are the one who made this erroneous claim and now prove what you claim.
    The true Christian Church was in existence long before the Catholic Church and the Catholic Church Just like the Calvinist Churches all tried to force there theology down peoples throat.They both made it law that no one could have a different belief.They both murdered thousands of Christians down through history to stamp out the truth.Calvinism Is a lie just like Catholicism.The very fact that Jacobus Arminius stood against Calvin proves your claim wrong...
    Romanbear [​IMG]
     
  8. sturgman

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    Romanbear, you make me laugh [​IMG]

    Did anyone, when studying church history, ever hear the early church known as the catholic church? Like the church universal? So maybe we all came from the catholic church in some way.
     
  9. Charlotte Marcel

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    That's particularly funny because I have studied ancient religions. [​IMG]
     
  10. 4study

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    Rufus,

    Concerning I.
    Understood. However, the interpretation of Romans 5, Ephesians 2, and Romans 3 is dependant upon one’s personal theology.

    Concerning II.
    Choosing the ONE most consistent with the REVELATION is based upon personal theology. Perhaps to some, all three historical interpretations you’ve presented are contrary to scripture. Why limit the choices to historical narration?
     
  11. Yelsew

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    If you are speaking of the 1st century church, then we have some common ground. If, however you are addressing the formal organization bearing the name Catholic, then we have no common ground.
     
  12. rufus

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    4study, I believe you know that interpretation of a text involves MUCH MORE than one's personal theology - otherwise you have relativism.

    Interpretation of a text involves textual issues, semantic issues, syntactical issues, historical/cultural issues, genre issues, logical isssues as well as contexual issues.

    History provides examples of more than THREE interpretations, friend. I was simply highlighting the THREE MOST EMPHASIZED TODAY.

    God Bless,
    rufus [​IMG]
     
  13. romanbear

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    Hi rufus;
    All this and totally unsupported by scripture.
    No where does scripture say we are unable.In fact it says the oppsit.
    Romanbear
     
  14. rufus

    rufus
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    Into What Estate Did the Fall Bring Mankind?

    The Fall Brought Mankind into an Estate of Sin and Misery.

    What is Sinful About the Estate into Which Man Fell?

    The Sinfulness of that Estate Wherein to Man Fell, Consists in the Guilt of Adam’s First Sin, the Want of Original Righteousness, and the Corruption of His Whole Nature, Which is Commonly Called Original Sin, Together with All Actual Transgressions Which Proceed from It.

    QUESTION 1: How many sorts of sin are there which denote the sinfulness of the estate of man by the fall?

    ANSWER: There are two sorts of sin, namely, original sin and actual sin.

    QUESTION 2: What is original sin?

    ANSWER: Original sin consists in three things. 1. In the guilt of Adam’s first sin. 2. In the want of original righteousness. 3. In the corruption of the whole nature.

    QUESTION 3: How are all the children of men guilty of Adam’s first sin?

    ANSWER: All the children of men are guilty of Adam’s first sin by imputation: as the righteousness of Christ, the second Adam, is imputed unto all the spiritual seed, namely, to all believers; so the sin of the first Adam is imputed to all the natural seed which came forth of his loins. “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners; so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous” (Rom. 5:19).

    QUESTION 4: What is included in the want of original righteousness?

    ANSWER: The want of original righteousness includes: 1. Want of true spiritual knowledge in the mind. “The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God;neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Cor. 2:14). 2. Want of inclination and power to do good; and want of all spiritual affections in the will and heart. “In me (that is, in my flesh) dwelleth no good thing; but how to perform that which is good I find not” (Rom. 7:18).

    QUESTION 5: Is the want of original righteousness a sin?

    ANSWER: Yes; because it is a want of conformity to the law of God, which requires original and habitual righteousness, as well as actual.

    QUESTION 6: If God withheld this original righteousness, is not he the author of sin?

    ANSWER: No; because though man is obligated to have original righteousness, yet God is not bound to restore it when man has lost it; and it is not a sin to withhold it, but punishment for the first sin.

    QUESTION 7: How could the souls of Adam’s posterity, not yet created, nor having relation to Adam, be justly deprived of original righteousness?

    ANSWER: The souls of Adam’s posterity never had a being without relation of Adam; they being created in the infusion and conjunction of them to their body, and, through their relation to the common head, partake justly of the common punishment.

    QUESTION 8: What is the corruption of the whole nature of man?

    ANSWER: The corruption of the nature of man is the universal depravation which is in every part of man since the fall. 1. In the darkness and defilement of the mind. “For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord” (Eph. 5:8). And, “The minds and consciences of the unbelieving are defiled” (Titus 1:15). 2. In the crookedness and enmity of the heart and will against God and his law. “The carnal mind” (that is, the carnal heart) “is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be” (Rom. 8:7). As also in the inclination of the heart unto sin, and the worst of sins, there belong the seed of all manner of sins in the heart, as it is corrupted with original sin. “Out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murder, adulteries, fornications,thefts, false witness, blasphemies” (Matt. 15:19). 3. In the disorder and distemper of the affections all of them being naturally set upon wrong objects through this inherent corruption. 4. The members also of the body are infected, being ready weapons and instruments of unrighteousness. (Rom. 6:13).

    QUESTION 9: How is the corruption of nature conveyed, then, to all the children of men?

    ANSWER: 1. It is not from God, who is the author of all good, but of no evil; for though he withhold original righteousness, yet he does not infuse original corruption. 2. It is conveyed by natural generation, in the union and conjunction of soul and body; the soul, being destitute or void of original righteousness, is infected with this corruption, as liquor is tainted which is put into a tainted vessel: but the way of its conveyance is one of the most difficult things in divinity to understand.

    QUESTION 10: Have we reason to deny this original corruption, because we have no reason to understand clearly the way it is conveyed?

    ANSWER: No; because: 1. The Scripture asserts that our natures, since the fall, are corrupt. “Adam” (though made after the likeness of God) “begat a son after his own likeness” (Gen. 5:3); that is, with a corrupt nature. “That which is born of the flesh is flesh” (John 3:6). “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me” (Ps. 51:5). “You hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins” (Eph. 2:1). 2. Experience tells us that in everyone there is a natural antipathy to good, and proneness to evil. Therefore, as when a man’s house is on fire, it is greater wisdom to endeavor to quench it than to inquire how it was set on fire; so it is greater wisdom to endeavor the removal of this natural corruption, than to inquire how it was conveyed.

    QUESTION 11: Do sanctified persons beget children without natural corruption?

    ANSWER: No; because parents that are sanctified are sanctified but in part, their nature remaining in part corrupt; and they beget children according to their nature, and notaccording to their grace; as the winnowed corn that is sown grows up with husks upon it, or as the circumcised Jews did beget uncircumcised children in the flesh as well as the heart.

    QUESTION 12: Why is this sin called original sin?

    ANSWER: Because we have it from our birth or from the time of our origin, and because all our actual transgressions do proceed from it.

    QUESTION 13: What is actual sin?

    ANSWER: Actual sin is any breach of God’s law, either of omission or commission; either in thought, heart, speech, or action. Of which more is in the commandments.

    [Vincent, T. 1996. A family instructional guide. Christian Classics Foundation: Simpsonville SC]

    rufus [​IMG]
     
  15. 4study

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    rufus,

    The answers to the "issues" you name still depend upon personal choices. This is what I mean by "personal theology". People have differences in all the areas you mention.

    I did not mean to imply there are only three historical positions. I'm asking the question, "why limit our choices to historical perepectives?"
     
  16. rufus

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    4study:

    What ought we to base our CHOICES on, friend?

    May I suggest that we base our textual, historical, and personal choices on solid EVIDENCE and sound REASONING.

    rufus [​IMG]
     
  17. 4study

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    rufus,

    Yes, I agree. However, there will be differences concerning what "solid EVIDENCE" and "sound REASONING" is. Personal choices are somewhat evasive unless we take the time to address assumptions and preconcieved ideas.
     
  18. rufus

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    4study said:

    I personally believe that assumptions and preconcieved ideas may be changed as solid factual evidence and sound logical reasoning aid in understanding truth questions.

    In apologetics, several things are vitally important before real debate can take place: (1)agreement on definition of terms employed in the debate; (2)true premises corresponding to reality; (3)valid and sound reasoning from true premises to sound conclusions.

    Therefore, I believe much of the Calvinistic/Arminian debate is merely verbal dispute and not REAL DEBATE! IMHO

    rufus :(
     
  19. 4study

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    rufus,

    Well said. I agree. [​IMG]

    In my experience, I've found assumptions and preconcieved ideas are not easily changed. It takes time, courage, and a desire to learn/grow.

    I especially agree with what you've said about this forum. It's too bad people don't take more time to dicuss things like terminology. I guess it depends upon one's goals. Everyone has their own "agenda". [​IMG]
     

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