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Posts Tagged ‘Judgment of Sinners

Psalm 11 In Contrast to Psalm 10

Psalm 10:1-13 begins with the psalmist lamenting what I have lamented before myself, why do the wicked prosper while in their sins?  Why is it that the faithful slaves of Christ have to suffer while the sinners tend to live lives of carefree full of worldly joy?  Saints of God all over the world suffer for the name and cause of Christ while the wicked sit in places of honor and our culture glorifies the wicked and forsakes the righteous.  Our political leaders in the United States are corrupt while the righteous leaders are hard to find and often are hated by the media.

Why is this so?  I understand that people love the darkness instead of the light (John 3:19).  People do not love God.  People do not seek God.  People, in fact, hate God (Romans 3:10-18).  They have exchanged the truth of God for lies (Romans 1:25).  People do this wickedness for one reason:  because they love their sins (Romans 1:18).  Apart from the grace of God, none could be saved.  We would not want to be saved.  We would want to try to save ourselves, to earn our own righteousness (which is tainted by our selfishness).  We despise the Word of God.  We despise God’s sovereignty.  We despise His salvation.  We despise His Son.

Psalm 10:14-18 promises us that God does know.  God does notice.  He is not blind to the wicked.  He sees their sins.  It is by His mercy that the wicked are not dead now.  God, in His mercy, lets the wicked go forth in their sins.  God lets the wicked eat, sleep, breath His air, and enjoy His earth.  A time of judgment is coming but for now, God is merciful and is waiting for them to repent of their sins (2 Peter 3:9).

Psalm 11 is a contrast to Psalm 10.  Psalm 11 exalts the fact that God will judge.  The righteous need to trust in the LORD for He will judge in His perfect timing.  We can easily become defeated as we look around at the sin in our world, the fact that people love darkness instead of light.  We can lament that people are not seeking God.  We can lament that Romans 1:32 is true of our world.  We live in a wicked, evil, God-hating age.

But God will judge.  His judgment will come (Psalm 11:6).  God sees what is taking place in our wicked age (Psalm 11:4).  God surely hates the wicked (Psalm 11:5) but He loves the righteous (Psalm 11:7).  We who love Jesus Christ, who fear Him (Proverbs 16:6), we are loved by God!  We who love Jesus know that we are not righteous in our own good works (Ephesians 2:8-9) but we know that we righteous because of Christ alone (2 Corinthians 5:21).  We are righteous in Him (Romans 10:4) and we are living righteously because of Him (Titus 2:11-12; 1 John 3:7).  We understand that we love God because He has loved us first (1 John 4:10).

Now our pursuit, the righteous man’s pursuit, is to know Christ and to love Him more.  We prove this by obeying His commandments (John 14:15; 1 John 5:2-3).  Those who claim to love God but love their sins prove they are not His children (1 John 3:6-10).  Those who claim to love God prove their love by obedience to His Lordship (Matthew 7:21-27; Luke 6:46-49; 1 John 2:3-6).  We understand that our salvation, our righteousness is based on the Lord Jesus and our holiness comes from Him (Romans 6:11-14).  Because of what He has done for us, we strive for holiness (Hebrews 12:14; 1 Peter 1:15-16).

Psalm 11 gives the righteous the promise of judgment of the wicked to come.  We can trust that God will be just in His justice and He is merciful toward the wicked to bring them to repentance (Romans 2:4).  Jesus came to save the sinful (Luke 19:10) and we must admit that we too were once sinful as the wicked around us (Titus 3:1-7).  Thankfully the Lord was merciful toward us and He brought us to salvation by His grace.  Bless His name forever!

Written by The Seeking Disciple

12/22/2013 at 4:47 PM

Short Thoughts on Conditionalism

But transgressors shall be altogether destroyed;  the future of the wicked shall be cut off.
– Psalm 37:38 

Conditionalism is the teaching that eternal life is a gift from God given only to those who believe the gospel (Romans 6:23).  The rest of humanity that rejects the gospel will be destroyed or annihilated.  It is somewhat different from annihilation in that it teaches that the wicked (unbelievers) will go to hell but will be destroyed by God (Matthew 10:28).  Several evangelicals hold to this view including Edward Fudge, Douglas Jacoby, Chris Date, Michael Green, and I. Howard Marshall.  The late scholars F.F. Bruce and John Stott both claimed agnosticism about hell but they both favored conditionalism.  Conditionalism is neither an Arminian nor a Calvinist position.

I have wavered at times on this issue.  At times I have favored the traditional teaching on hell (that unbelievers will suffer for eternity) while also being appalled at the thought of hell.  I find Christians who gloat over hell without tears to be unloving nor biblical (Romans 9:3).  Hell (either way you see it) should make us fear, shutter, and long to see souls saved by grace to avoid that place of misery.  I have read books on both sides.  I was taught the traditional view of hell and have preached the traditional view myself.  I have wavered at times on the issue of hell because of my view of God’s love for people (not that He will not destroy sinners but only that I find it difficult to connect the love and goodness of God with the thought that He will inflict wrath upon people forever and ever without end).  At times I have had to acknowledge that it is easy to be moved by compassion and not by biblical theology when it comes to hell.  We can reject hell because it makes us feel better but this would not be right.  We must embrace what Scripture says even if we don’t find it appealing to our natural desires.  As I study the holiness of God, I see how sin robs Him of His glory and must be punished.  This has led me to study hell and I am convinced of the reality of hell though I do wonder about the duration of hell.

At this point, I am not coming down on any side though I admit that you can find me leaning one way or another at different times.  What I find appealing about the conditionalism view is that immortality belongs only to God (1 Timothy 6:16) and that the gift of eternal life is given only to those in Christ Jesus (Romans 2:7-8).  Those who are not saved will rise at the resurrection but unto judgment (John 5:28-29; 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9).  Unbelievers will be cast into hell where they will be destroyed by eternal fire (Matthew 25:46; Revelation 20:14).

There are a few false assumptions I have made in the past about conditionalism that I want to point out here.  First, conditionalism does not deny hell.  Edward Fudge, for example, teaches on hell and I believe he would warn sinners about hell though he would not describe hell in the language of say Jonathan Edwards or John Wesley.  Secondly, not all conditionalists hold to the teaching known as “soul sleep.”  I was under the impression that all who rejected the traditional teaching on hell would hold to soul sleep.  Third, those who hold to conditionalism are not necessarily holding to their views because of the exaltation of humanity.  Chris Date, for example, is a Reformed Calvinist who would gladly agree with John Piper over the nature of depravity but he would disagree with Piper over the duration of suffering in hell.  Edward Fudge’s book are filled with Scripture so I assure you that his approach is not first one of compassion or even love for humans but a love for the Word.  I appreciate this.  I have personally known Douglas Jacoby for some time and his approach likewise would be to exalt the Word above traditions.  Lastly, conditionalism is not heretical.  Again, you could warn sinners of hell and warn them of the wrath of God to come upon them if they continue in sin without trying to scare them with “you will suffer forever and ever and ever” tactics.  The gospel, and not hell, is what saves sinners from the wrath to come (Romans 1:16-17).  I find not once in Acts that the Apostles used hell to try to get people saved.  They preached Christ and His resurrection and God used their message to save souls (1 Corinthians 1:18-25).  Christ is the One we are to preach and exalt and He saves the lost for His glory!

You can find out more by checking out the site, Rethinking Hell or reading this book.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

10/03/2013 at 11:43 AM

People Desire To Suppress The Truth of God

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.
– Romans 1:18

Scripture makes it clear that people love sin more than they love God (John 3:19-21).  Our desire is not to know God nor to love God nor to serve God or worship Him but our desire is to live our lives free from any restraints and to do whatever we desire whether it be to kill the baby inside of our women or to have lust for each other, people love darkness rather than light. People are by nature children of wrath (Ephesians 2:3).  We are full of sin and lies (Romans 3:10-18).  The picture the Bible paints of us is not one of goodness and moral uprightness but sinfulness and utter depravity (Jude 8-16).

The fact is that we do know about God.  Scripture makes it clear that people can see evidence of God all around us in His creation (Psalm 19:1-6).  While creation is not sufficient to save us, it is sufficient to condemn us because we see His creation and yet we don’t seek after God (Romans 1:21) and instead we worship false gods of our creation (Romans 1:22-23).  The gods here in the United States are not trees or the Sun but instead we worship the gods of sports, sex, power, money, position, things, etc.  In the United States people tend to think that the amount of stuff you own equals success and happiness.  For many men it is sexual experiences with various women.  We have many gods in this nation.  But the one true and living God is the very one that we suppress.  We hate Him.  We hate His kingdom.  We hate His Son.  We hate His commandments.  We hate His judgments.  We hate His authority.  We hate His true Church.  We don’t love God.  We would kill Him if we could.

But the truth of God remains.  We may seek to suppress God’s truth through our sins.  We may try to suppress God’s truth through laws of the land that allow for sinning such as abortion on demand or homosexual “marriages” but the truth of God remains.  His laws will not change simply because people decide that God calls sinful will not be sinful anymore.  The truth of God will stand no matter what (Matthew 5:17-18).  God’s moral law will still judge all.  Only a perfect Redeemer could rescue us from the wrath of Almighty God who will judge justly (Genesis 18:25).  God’s wrath will come but for now, He has given us grace in the Son of God.  He has given us the hope of salvation through Jesus Christ.  Jesus alone is able to satisfy the just wrath of God against our sins.  Without Him, the wrath of God will be poured out upon our sinfulness.  An eternal hell demonstrates the depth of God’s holiness as to show us that our sins are not just mere violations but are criminal acts against God and His laws.  The righteous Judge will judge justly on that day (2 Thessalonians 1:8-10).  Our only hope is Jesus and His blood that was shed for our forgiveness (2 Corinthians 5:18-21).  Without Jesus, we are dead in our sins (John 15:1-11).  Without Jesus, we are blasphemers about to stand before the very One that we blasphemed.  Only a holy Savior can save us from the just wrath of God.

And that is the hope of the gospel.  I now have peace with God through faith in Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1).  I cannot earn God’s forgiveness for my sins are too great and my desire is for sin.  The Son of God came to bear my sins and to take away the wrath of God against my sins.  Forgiveness only comes through Jesus Christ.  It does not come through a religion or through a religious organization but only through faith in the Son of God (Ephesians 1:7; 2:8-9).  Jesus came to be the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world (John 1:29) and He became, through the cross, our only hope for salvation (John 14:6).  Indeed, Jesus is the Savior of the world (John 4:42; 1 John 4:14) but He is only the Savior of those who appropriate His blood for our salvation (1 Timothy 4:10).  Without His blood, we are doomed (Hebrews 9:22, 27-28).  But by grace through faith in Jesus, we are saved from the penalty of sin and forgiven before God (Hebrews 8:12).

Written by The Seeking Disciple

02/19/2013 at 10:17 AM

Why Are Sinners Condemned?

All of salvation is a gift of God.  This is the position of many Calvinists.  No Arminian would disagree.  We firmly believe that salvation is the gracious work of Christ and that salvation is fully accomplished by God and for His glory.  The only “work” for the sinner is to believe the gospel (John 6:29) which Paul clearly shows in Romans 4:4-5 is not a work.  Here Paul the Apostle contrasts faith with works and shows that faith is the opposite of work.  To work for one’s salvation would nullify grace (Romans 11:6).  Faith is the full acceptance of the gracious work of God that He has given to us in Christ Jesus who finished the work of saving sinners through His sacrificial death on the cross (John 19:30).

However, why will people then be condemned at the judgment seat of Christ?  Will it be because they were not sovereignly chosen by God to be saved?  Will it be because they refused the gospel?  Will it be for the sins?  The answers to those questions are vital to our understanding of God, His nature, the purpose of the atonement, evangelism, discipleship, etc.  So let us work through these questions.

First, why are people condemned?  The obvious answer is sin.  It was the warning of Genesis 2:17 that brought death to the human race in our forefather Adam (Romans 5:12).  Adam was created with a sinful nature, without being depraved, yet he sinned against God.  He violated God’s holy law.  This brought condemnation to all and now all of Adam’s posterity is born with a sinful desire.  Arminius rightly saw this as total depravity.  Arminius wrote:

The whole of this sin, however, is not peculiar to our first parents, but is common to the entire race and to all their posterity, who, at the time when this sin was committed, were in their loins, and who have since descended from them by the natural mode of propagation, according to the primitive benediction. For in Adam “all have sinned.” (Rom. v, 12.) Wherefore, whatever punishment was brought down upon our first parents, has likewise pervaded and yet pursues all their posterity. So that all men “are by nature the children of wrath,” (Ephes. ii, 3,) obnoxious to condemnation, and to temporal as well as to eternal death; they are also devoid of that original righteousness and holiness. (Rom. v, 12, 18, 19.) With these evils they would remain oppressed forever, unless they were liberated by Christ Jesus; to whom be glory forever.

So people are condemned because of sin.  This is obvious.  Sin is the transgression of the law (1 John 3:4).  Sin brings death (Romans 6:23) and sin only breeds more sin (Galatians 6:7-8).  James 1:14-15 (NKJV) tells us where sin comes from:

But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.

Jesus said that whoever sins is a slave to sin (John 8:34).  Ecclesiastes 7:20 says, “For there is not a just man on earth who does good and does not sin.”  Romans 3:10-18 perfectly describes our condition before a holy God:

“There is none righteous, no, not one;
There is none who understands;
There is none who seeks after God.
They have all turned aside;
They have together become unprofitable;
There is none who does good, no, not one.”
“Their throat is an open tomb;
With their tongues they have practiced deceit”;
“The poison of asps is under their lips”;
“Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.”
“Their feet are swift to shed blood;
Destruction and misery are in their ways;
And the way of peace they have not known.”
“There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

We sin because we are both sinful and we are sinful because we sin.  Condemnation comes because of sin.  The fact of Genesis 2:17 did not change.  Those who sin deserve death and the wages of sin is death.  People are condemned because of sin.  Paul writes in Galatians 5:19-21 about the works of the flesh and how such acts will keep us from the kingdom:

Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Notice that it is sin that will keep a person from the kingdom.  There is nothing in Scripture to suggest that the sovereignty of God will keep us from heaven or that God has decreed such.  The fact is that people are condemned because of sin.

The only remedy for sin is the precious blood of Jesus.  Hebrews 9:22 says, “Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.”  Why?  Because God demands that the one who sins shall die (Genesis 2:17) and He requires blood to atone for sins (Leviticus 17:11).  Only the blood of Jesus can cleanse us from sin (Hebrews 9:28; 1 John 1:7).  The blood of Jesus was absolutely perfect and holy blood that had never sinned (2 Corinthians 5:21).  The blood of Jesus is our only hope for salvation (Matthew 26:28; 1 Timothy 2:5-6).  The soul that sins shall die (Ezekiel 18:4).  Someone must die when someone sins.  Whether it be the Lamb of God, our substitute, our Passover (1 Corinthians 5:7) or our own blood, someone must die.  The problem is that our blood is tainted with sin.  Jesus’ blood was not.  He stood condemned in our place, for our sins (Isaiah 53:4-6).  He died on the cross for our transgressions.  And not just ours but for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2).  What a great sacrifice was the cross!  How unlimited is His atonement!

People then will stand before God at the final judgment and will be cast aside not because of election or reprobation but because of their own sins and their rejection of the truth.  Romans 1:18-32 establishes universal condemnation.  The necessity of the gospel and world evangelism are seen in the words of Jesus Christ (Matthew 28:19; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:47; John 20:21; Acts 1:8) and in the words of Paul in Romans 10:14-17.  The way for people to be saved is through the gospel.  We are under obligation to preach to all (2 Corinthians 5:18-6:3).  We must declare that Jesus alone can forgive sins by His blood.  And what brings condemnation is their own sins before a holy God and rejection of His truth (John 3:17-21).  No person will stand at the judgment and say that it was God’s decree that sent them to hell but their own sins.  They know that they are guilty before God (Romans 2:12-16).  Arminius stated, “The opposite to justification is condemnation, and this by an immediate contrariety, so that between these two no medium can be imagined.”  In other words, Arminius acknowledged that we are either justified through faith in Christ or we are condemned in our sins.  There is only one way to justification before God and that is in Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9).  He alone is the way, the truth, and the life and no one comes to the Father but through Him (John 14:6; cf. Acts 4:12).

I believe, in closing, that the will of God is for all to be saved and He has demonstrated this in the giving of His Son (John 3:16).  I believe He takes no delight in the death of the wicked (Ezekiel 18:32).  People will be condemned not because of God’s failure to provide His Son for their sins but their rejection of His gospel.  Through their own sins, their false worshiping and idolatry, they will stand before God and face condemnation.  The only hope is Jesus.  We must preach the gospel to all.  The gospel of Christ alone has the power to save those who believe (1 Corinthians 1:21; cf. Romans 1:16-17).  Our salvation will come only in Christ and what He has accomplished with His death on the cross and His glorious resurrection (Romans 4:24-5:1).  Arminius rightly said about men rejecting the gospel,

The accidental issue of vocation is, the rejection of the doctrine of grace, contempt of the divine counsel, and resistance manifested against the Holy Spirit, of which the proper and per se cause is, the wickedness and hardness of the human heart; and to this not unfrequently is added the just judgment of God, avenging the contempt shown to his word, from which arise blindness of mind, hardening of the heart, and a delivering up to a reprobate mind, and to the power of Satan.

But Arminius also noted that justification before God only comes through faith and with it comes blessings:

The object of justification is man, a sinner, acknowledging himself, with sorrow, to be such an one, and a believer, that is, believing in God who justifies the ungodly, and in Christ as having been delivered for our offenses, and raised again for our justification. As a sinner, man needs justification through grace, and, as a believer, he obtains justification through grace.

May we preach to all to come and be saved, to look to the Lord Jesus for salvation (John 3:14-15) and repent of their sins (Acts 17:30-31).  All can be forgiven and accepted in the chosen Son of God (Ephesians 1:7).

Written by The Seeking Disciple

12/12/2012 at 12:39 AM

The Misuse of Matthew 7:1

I saw a picture of a brother in the Lord street preaching and someone next to him was holding up a sign that read, “Matthew 7:1 – Do not judge lest you be judged.”  The obvious reference was to the brother preaching.  He was said to be judging people for calling them sinners or telling them they needed to repent of their sins.  Matthew 7:1, as often used like this, is used to justify sins, to justify the unrighteous lives of worldly people, and to shut the mouths of preachers preaching the gospel.

But is Matthew 7:1 telling us to never judge?  Let’s look at the verse in its context from Matthew 7:1-5 (NASB).

“Do not judge so that you will not be judged. 2 For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. 3 Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.

If we just had verse 1 then yes it would seem that Jesus is telling us to never judge others.  But notice the remaining verses.  In verse 3 He tells us that we should not be quick to point out a speck in a brother’s eye but not notice the log in our own eyes.  He then tells us in verse 5 the solution and notice that it is not to judge but instead to remove the log out of our own eye and then will can see and take the speck out of our brother’s eye.  Clearly He is telling us that we are to judge both ourselves and others.

In 2 Corinthians 13:5 we are told to examine ourselves to see whether we are in the faith.  There is a needful place for making sure we are abiding in Christ and walking after Him (Galatians 5:16-17).  We are to make sure that our faith is in Jesus constantly (Hebrews 12:1-2).  Our salvation is dependent upon Him (John 15:1-11).  He is our life (Colossians 3:4).  We are to examine ourselves not by our standards or the church’s standards but in the light of Jesus and who He is (Galatians 5:22-23).  Our aim is to be like Jesus in everything (1 John 2:6).  Our entire being is revolve around knowing and loving and worshiping Him (Romans 12:1-2).  We are to be dead to sin and alive to God in Him (Romans 6:11).  So to examine ourselves is not to examine ourselves next to this brother or that sister but in the light of God’s Word (James 1:19-27).

This enables us to judge others.  In John 7:24 Jesus said, “Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgement” (NASB).  What is a righteous judgment?  How can we get a righteous judgment?  Simple: by judging all things according to the Bible, the inerrant Word of God.  The Bible is able to judge all things (Hebrews 4:12-13) and we are to judge all things by the Bible (1 Thessalonians 5:21).  The Bible is the holy truth of God (John 17:17) and the Bible reveals God and His ways to us (Hebrews 5:11-14).  By abiding in the Word of God, we are able to make wise discernment.  The Holy Spirit reveals His Word to us as we study the Bible and allow it to transform us by God’s grace.  Then we are able to make righteous judgements not based on appearances but upon the Word of God which is always true.

So now we see that Matthew 7:1 is not teaching us to never judge.  It is simply calling us to avoid being a hypocrite in our judging.  How dare we call someone out for sins when we ourselves struggle with those sins and more.  God wants us to be clean before Him (Matthew 5:8, 48) and we can only be sanctified holy through Christ (Acts 15:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24).  The will of God is our sanctification (1 Thessalonians 4:3) and as we abide in Christ, He is able to cleanse us and help us be the holy people of God who take a stand for God in an age of great errors.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

12/01/2012 at 11:39 PM

The Total Inability of the Sinner (Part 1)

Dr. Wayne Grudem notes that he prefers the term “total inability” above “total depravity” when discussing the issue of sin in the heart of people.  Grudem correctly notes that total depravity can be a bit deceiving as it makes it sound as if people are as sinful as they can be which is not the case for most of us.  Granted the human heart is wicked (see Jeremiah 17:9) but we are not as wicked as others are and perhaps not as good as others are but what is clear is that we are sinful.  We are depraved but perhaps we are not totally depraved as we could be.

With that in mind, Dr. Grudem suggests that we use the term “total inability” to describe the sinner’s condition before God.  I would agree as most Arminians would.  When we speak of the sinfulness of humanity, we agree that our hearts are wicked before a holy God and that apart from His grace, none of us could be saved.  In Calvinism, Grudem and others hold that God has unconditionally elected from the mass of humanity those whom He has chosen for salvation and if He chooses them, sends His Son to die for the elect’s sins then He will surely draw them to salvation by His irresistible grace.  R.C. Sproul notes that there is a general call for salvation that goes out to all people but a special inward call is only for the elect (John 6:37).

Arminians hold that election is conditional.  We hold that God sent His Son for the sins of the whole world (John 1:29) and that all may come to Him for salvation (John 3:16).  We hold that the call for salvation goes out to all but only those who come in faith and repentance become the elect of God (1 Timothy 4:10; 2 Timothy 2:10).  The Holy Spirit works on the sinner’s heart (as in Calvinism but different in respect to the issue of free will and the ability to resist the Spirit) through the gospel to draw the sinner to the Savior.  While the Spirit does not force a person to believe, if the person believes it is because the Spirit of God enabled them to believe.  This is necessary because of the total inability of the sinner to come to salvation.

Ephesians 2:8-9 makes it clear that salvation is by grace through faith and apart from works.  Romans 4:5 says that our justification is not by works but by faith.  Romans 4:24-5:1 show us that faith produces righteousness before God and justifies us through the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ who provides us peace with God.  1 Corinthians 1:30-31 tells us that it is by His doing that we are in Christ Jesus who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption.  Our boasting then is in God alone and not ourselves for our salvation in Christ.  Jesus alone is the very One who saved us.  We are not saved through any other basis but the work of Jesus Christ on the cross (Ephesians 1:7; Colossians 2:12-15).

What total inability then conveys is that none of us can obtain salvation by our good works or by being good people.  Because of our sins, we are guilty before God (Romans 3:23).  The Law of God reveals our sinfulness (Romans 7:7; 1 Timothy 1:8-11) and the Law shows us that none of us have kept God’s Law and we deserve His just punishment against our sins (James 2:10-13).  God’s wrath burns against our sins (Romans 1:18-32) and all of us deserve His justice.  Yet God is merciful toward us and He sent His Son to appease the just wrath of God against our sins (Matthew 26:28; Romans 5:8-9; 2 Corinthians 5:18-21; 1 Thessalonians 1:10).

Because of our sins, we are total unable to come to the Savior for salvation apart from His grace.  By nature, we are children of wrath (Ephesians 2:1-3).  By nature, we despise God and hate Him (Romans 1:21; 3:10-18).  If you slowly read Romans 3:10-18 you’ll notice that the entire makeup of a person is to be found from our throat to our eyes.  Our makeup is sinful.  We love sin.  We despise God’s Law (1 John 3:4).  Were it not for the grace of God, none of us could repent and be saved in Jesus Christ.  We would wander in our sins not seeking after God (Romans 3:11) but hating Him and living in sin.

But God is gracious and He sent His Son to die for us.  Through the gospel, God is drawing sinners to Himself (John 6:44).  Jesus was given over so that we could be saved through Him (John 12:32).  Jesus bore the penalty for our sins.  He was the perfect Lamb of God who died in our place (Isaiah 53:4-6).  “And He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed” (1 Peter 2:24 NASB).

We have seen that Jesus bore our sins but next let us look at whether we have examples of total inability in the Scriptures.

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