"To testify the gospel of the grace of God." Acts 20:24
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March 1, 2003
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WHY I PREACH THE DOCTRINE OF THE TOTAL HEREDITARY DEPRAVITY OF MAN
Dining Hall at Children's Center Damaged by Storm
REPORT ON FIRST TERM AT SOVEREIGN GRACE INDEPENDENT BAPTIST SCHOOL OF THEOLOGY, Mae Rim, Thailand (Near Chiang Mai)
WHY I PREACH THE DOCTRINE OF THE TOTAL HEREDITARY DEPRAVITY OF MAN
Series: In The Defense of the Doctrines of Grace Nicknamed Calvinism
Sermon 2, Part 1
By Wayne Camp
Editor’s Note: In the October 1, 2002, and the November 1, 2002, issue, I started the publication of some messages that I have prepared in defense of the doctrines of grace that have been nicknamed “Calvinism.” There is abundant historical and biblical evidence that these doctrines did not originate with John Calvin. In fact, the legendary five points indicated in the acrostic TULIP did not originate with John Calvin. Rather they were formulated by the Council of Dort in answer to the five points of Arminianism set forth by the followers of James Arminius. The doctrines of that system called Calvinism are biblical doctrines. And, they are historic Baptist doctrines. Many churches that vehemently denounce these doctrines trace their history through churches that held to these doctrines. For instance, if a church traces its history through churches in the Philadelphia Association, its history has a decidedly “Calvinistic” link or links in it. To denounce these doctrines as heresy is to denounce your own Baptist forefathers and renders your claims to perpetuity invalid. In view of these facts, I have chosen to set forth on the pages of this paper a biblical defense of these doctrines. —Wayne Camp, Editor.
Why do I preach the doctrine of Total Hereditary Depravity? Why do I preach the doctrine of the total inability of man to do that which is spiritually acceptable with God of a man’s own motivation and inclination? Read on and you will see that these truths are clearly set forth in the Scriptures.
TEXT: John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
Ephesians 2:1-3 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; 2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: 3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
Psalm 51:5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.
I have read from four different books of the inspired Word of God as a basis for this message. My subject continues the series I have called In The Defense of the Doctrines of Grace Nicknamed Calvinism. My subject is Why I Preach The Doctrine Of The Total Hereditary Depravity Of Man.
To the modern thinker there is no doctrine that is more obnoxious than this doctrine. It is a contradiction to the supposed goodness of all men by nature. It is a rebuke of every social do-gooder who thinks if we can improve education, the environment, and give out enough free goods and money, the evils of the world will suddenly disappear. It is in opposition to most, if not all, of the modern means used in evangelism and church growth. This doctrine is a denial of man's innate ability to come to Christ and salvation by his own will and motivation. This doctrine is a cannon that blasts every other doctrine of Arminianism.
The Arminian argues that every man has within his own nature the ability to come to Christ if he will simply take the first step in the exercise of his alleged free will. The doctrine of Total Hereditary Depravity shows that man will never and can never come to Christ of his own volition and motivation.
The Arminian argues that God calls all men equally and the reason some come to Christ and others do not must be found in man. This doctrine of Total Hereditary Depravity shows that there is no difference in men, the difference is in the manner in which men are called. Any difference in the way that men respond to the gospel of Jesus Christ is a God-put difference. Exodus 11:7 But against any of the children of Israel shall not a dog move his tongue, against man or beast: that ye may know how that the LORD doth put a difference between the Egyptians and Israel.
The Arminian argues that the atonement of Christ is universal and available to all men if each will only seek it out in his own natural longing for God. Total Hereditary Depravity argues that there is none that seeketh after God. It argues that God must seek the sinner and bring him all the way to salvation or he will never come.
The Arminian argues that God has chosen all men to salvation but makes that salvation dependent on the alleged free-will of man. Or, he may argue there is no election to salvation and that one enters the realm of the elect by his coming to Christ of his own inclination and desire.
The Arminian argues that one can loose his salvation, or can at least go out of it if he personally desires to do so. He further argues that he got into this salvation of his own free will and can therefore get out of it of his own free will. Total Hereditary Depravity argues that man is such by nature that he cannot, of his own, unassisted free will come to Christ, nor can he stay saved by his own works or power. The same Divine power that drew him and enabled him to come to Christ must also keep him and cause him to persevere or he would surely be lost.
The Arminian argues that man can repent by simply making up his own mind to do so without any outside intervention or assistance. Total Hereditary Depravity argues that it is godly sorrow that worketh repentance; it argues that God must grant repentance if any are to repent towards God so as to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Arminian argues that all men have the necessary faith to come to Christ. Or, he may argue that man can conjure up the necessary faith to come to Christ. Total Hereditary Depravity argues that God must give a sinner faith if he is to believe.
This doctrine of Total Hereditary Depravity is, therefore, a pivotal doctrine. One who truly sees this doctrine as set forth in the Word of God will shortly thereafter see the other doctrines that we call the doctrines of grace, or the doctrine of sovereign grace. As I have told you before, one great enemy of the doctrines of grace, Evangelist Jimmy Swaggart, confessed in his magazine that, if one accepts as true the doctrine of total depravity, he must also accept the doctrines of election, effectual call, particular redemption, and preservation and perseverance of the saints. He declared that one who rejects any of the others must reject total depravity also. He argues correctly that total depravity requires an effectual call, etc. To quote him exactly he said of the legendary five points, "If you believe in one of these, you have to believe in all of them" (The Evangelist, Sept. 1983, p. 9).
I have no use for Jimmy Swaggart. He is a false prophet of the most deceptive kind. But, in his above assertion he was correct. If one truly embraces one of the five points it will lead him to embrace them all if he is consistent in his interpretation of the Scriptures.
This is why it is so important to be correct in our understanding of this doctrine of Total Hereditary Depravity. If one is wrong here, it will affect his understanding of the entire scope of the scheme of salvation, as well as his thinking about God, and the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, I want to tell you in this message Why I Preach the Doctrine of the Total Hereditary Depravity of Man.
I PREACH THE DOCTRINE OF THE TOTAL HEREDITARY DEPRAVITY OF MAN BECAUSE WE MUST UNDERSTAND THE SOURCE AND EXTENT OF MAN'S DEPRAVITY
God is not the source of man’s depravity. It is clear from Scripture that he did not create man in a sinful state. He created man upright. Ecclesiastes 7:29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.
God created man in a state that he could call him good as he could all of his creation good. After he created man he declared all that he had created to be very good. Genesis 1:31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
God created man in his own image; his own moral goodness. Genesis 1:26-27 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
The fact that all are born with a sinful nature is better understood when we understand that Adam was a representative man. Our standing was in him; when he fell we fell, and great was that fall.
Just how great was that fall?
That fall was so great that all men are conceived with a sin nature. Psalm 51:5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. David was not inferring that his mother was in an act of sin when he was conceived. Rather, he was saying that he was conceived in a sinful state; he was conceived with a sinful nature.
That fall was so great that all men are wicked by nature and come forth from the womb speaking lies. Psalm 58:3 The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies. One does not have to be around children long to see the evidences of their depravity. They come forth from the womb speaking lies. No one has to teach them to sin any more than a mother duck must teach her ducklings to swim. Those ducklings just have swimming in the water in their nature. And, all children are born into this world with the nature to sin and they do not have to be one year old to manifest their bent to sin.
That fall was so great that it brought death to all of Adam’s offspring. Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. In Thailand the bodies of the majority of those who die are burned. This is the common practice, if not universal practice, of the country’s Buddhist population. But, there are still many evidences of the death brought by Adam’s transgression. Between Chiang Mai and Mae Rim where the Children’s Center is located there are two, possibly three places where families congregate for the funeral and the burning of the bodies of their loved ones.
Here in the United States one cannot travel far without seeing a cemetery. Beautiful hillsides are often covered with tombstones where the bodies of the dead are interred. I have just returned from a meeting in the beautiful state of West Virginia. I do not remember what city it was but I remember seeing a very large cemetery that was filled with the graves of the dead. Sin entered the world by Adam and death entered the world because of sin. Death passed upon all men because in Adam and personally all men have sinned.
The fall of Adam was so great that all men are born dead in trespasses and sins. Ephesians 2:1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins. One does not have to wait to die spiritually. He is born in that state or condition. By nature all men are separated from God. And, as the body without the spirit is dead, so man, without God, is dead spiritually. Every Scripture that declares that Jesus Christ came to give life is a testimony that man is dead spiritually. John 10:10 I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. This verse, as well as the one cited just above show that even Christ’s sheep, until they hear his voice, are dead in trespasses and sins and bereft of spiritual life.
That fall was so great that the imaginations of men's hearts are only evil from their youth up. Genesis 8:21 And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done. What is it in a child that causes him to have all these evil imaginations from the time of his youth?
That fall was so great that it caused all of Adam’s offspring to naturally be children of wrath and disobedience. Ephesians 2:2-3 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: 3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. It is evident from Scripture that man is naturally sinful and is, therefore, spiritually dead. He gets it from his first father, Adam. Isaiah 43:27 Thy first father hath sinned, and thy teachers have transgressed against me. According to John Gill, a Jewish commentator had this to say on this verse, "thy first father hath sinned how canst thou say thou hast not sinned? and behold thy first father hath sinned, and he is the first man, for man is naturally in sin."
That fall was so great that sin reigned among men as a result of it. Romans 5:14,17,21 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. 17 For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) 21 That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord. Sin is king in the heart and life of the unregenerate person. It reigns. It has dominion over the sinner. It reigns because of one man’s offense. Grace reigns in the heart of the saved but sin reigns in the heart of the unsaved.
That fall was so great that judgment to condemnation came upon all men as the result of it. Romans 5:16 And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. The judgment that came as a result of Adam’s sin was to condemnation. That is why all who are born into this world are under condemnation. All unbelievers are condemned. This condemnation is not because they have heard the gospel and rejected it. It is because they have never believed on the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour. John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
I PREACH THE DOCTRINE OF THE TOTAL HEREDITARY DEPRAVITY OF MAN BECAUSE IT IS ABUNDANTLY DECLARED IN GOD’S WORD
In God’s Word the depravity of man is declared to be total. John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. Our first birth is of the flesh and that which is born of the flesh is flesh. And in our adamic nature there is no good thing. We were inherently totally depraved.
The depravity of man is declared to be hereditary. Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. Nothing could be more evident than the fact that we inherit our sin nature from Adam. Romans 5:12 and other Scriptures prove that to be so.
The depravity of man is declared to be enslaving. Romans 6:20 For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness. There is no bondage that can equal the bondage of the unregenerate person. It is such bondage that man is helpless to deliver himself from this slavery of sin.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that it renders him incapable of loving God. Romans 8:7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. Someone may question my use of this Scripture to substantiate man’s inability to love God. The carnal mind is no more capable of loving God than it is of being subject to the law of God. How can one whose mind is enmity against God and whose heart is deceitful above all things possible love God. It is only after regeneration that one can love God. That is when love for God is shed abroad in the heart by the Holy Spirit. Romans 5:5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that it renders man incapable of obeying or pleasing God. Romans 8:7-8 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. How helpless we are, in our natural and unregenerate state to obey or please God! It is impossible. Please note the word cannot. The one who is still unregenerate cannot please God. His carnal mind is not subject to the law of God and cannot be subject to that holy law.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that it renders man incapable of coming to Christ. John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. This is another inability of the unregenerate person. He cannot come to Christ. Only when the Holy Spirit quickens and draws him is he able to come to Christ. His will is depraved and he cannot come. Jesus made it very clear. John 6:65 And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that it makes man unwilling to come to Christ. John 5:40 And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life. Man, by his natural powers, cannot come to Christ. Moreover, he is unwilling to come to Christ. With a mind that is defiled and enmity against God and a heart that is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked the unregenerate man simply will not will to come to Christ.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that parents are incapable of bringing forth a spiritually clean offspring. Job 14:4 Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one. Job 25:4-6 How then can man be justified with God? or how can he be clean that is born of a woman? 5 Behold even to the moon, and it shineth not; yea, the stars are not pure in his sight. 6 How much less man, that is a worm? and the son of man, which is a worm? These questions must be answered and the answer is not good. No unclean thing can produce a clean one. The son of a man that is born of woman cannot be clean.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that he drinks iniquity like water. Job 15:14-16 What is man, that he should be clean? and he which is born of a woman, that he should be righteous? 15 Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight. 16 How much more abominable and filthy is man, which drinketh iniquity like water? Depraved men desire sin as one desires water when he is thirsty. He drinks iniquity as if it were water.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that the heart of man is deceitful and wicked. Jeremiah 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? Ah, says someone of one who is not saved, “He is really good at heart.” This cannot be true when his heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that the mind and conscience of man are defiled. Titus 1:15 Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.
The depravity of man is declared to be such that unregenerate men cannot receive the things of the Spirit of God. 1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
TO BE CONTINUED NEXT ISSUE BUT PUBLISHED HERE SO THAT IT WILL BE ON THE INTERNET IN ONE DOCUMENT
PREACH THE DOCTRINE OF THE TOTAL HEREDITARY DEPRAVITY OF MAN BECAUSE THERE ARE
SO MANY EVIDENCES OF MAN'S DEPRAVITY IN THIS WORLD
depravity is evident from the evil that has long been rampant in the world. Genesis
6:5 And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that
every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
Genesis 6:12-13 And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for
all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth. And God said unto Noah, The end
of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through
them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.
What a sad case! The thoughts of men’s hearts are only evil continually until
God gives them a new heart and a new spirit. One Hebrew scholar says, “The
Hebrew word signifies not only the imagination, but also the purposes and
desires.” John Gill wrote,
“The heart of man is evil and wicked, desperately wicked, yea,
wickedness itself, a fountain of iniquity, out of which abundance of evil flows,
by which it may be known in some measure what is in it,
and how wicked it is; but God, that
sees it, only knows perfectly all the wickedness of it,
and the evil that is in it: the "thoughts" of his heart are
evil; evil thoughts are formed in the heart,
and proceed from it; they are vain,
foolish, and sinful,
and abominable in the sight of God,
by whom they are seen, known,
and understood afar off: the "imagination" of his thoughts is
evil, the formation of them; they were evil while forming,
the substratum of thought, the
very beginning of it, the first
motion to it, yea,
"every" such one was evil,
and "only" so; not one good among them,
not one good thing in their hearts,
no one good thought there, nor
one good imagination of the thought; and so it was "continually" from
their birth, from their youth upwards,
throughout the whole of their lives, and all the days of their lives,
night and day, and day after
day, without intermission: this respects the original corruption of human
nature, and shows it to be
universal; for this was not only true of the men of the old world,
but of all mankind; the same is said of men after the flood as before,
and of all men in general without any exception.”
depravity is evident in the way he goes after that which is sinful. Romans 3:9-17 What then? are we
better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and
Gentiles, that they are all under sin; 10 As it is written, There is none
righteous, no, not one: 11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that
seeketh after God. 12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become
unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. 13 Their throat is an
open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is
under their lips: 14 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: 15 Their
feet are swift to shed blood: 16 Destruction and misery are in their ways: 17
And the way of peace have they not known.
There is nothing in this passage that will lend validity to the claim that some
men make for men. “They are all good at heart,” say many. How can that be in
the light of Paul’s description of the natural man.
depravity is evident in his lack of reverence toward God. Romans 3:18 There is no fear of
God before their eyes. This lack of fear is seen in Pharaoh's
contempt for God. Exodus 5:2 And Pharaoh said, Who is the LORD, that I should obey his
voice to let Israel go? I know not the LORD, neither will I let Israel go. It
is seen in the attitude of Sennacherib, king of Assyria, when he wrote letters
to rail against God. 2
Chronicles 32:17 He wrote also letters to rail on the LORD God of Israel, and to
speak against him, saying, As the gods of the nations of other lands have not
delivered their people out of mine hand, so shall not the God of Hezekiah
deliver his people out of mine hand. It is seen in man's hatred of the
knowledge of God. Proverbs 1:29-30 For that they
hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD: They would none of my
counsel: they despised all my reproof. It is seen in Nebuchadnezzar's mockery
of God. Daniel 3:15 Now if ye be ready that at what time ye hear the sound of
the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and dulcimer, and all kinds of
musick, ye fall down and worship the image which I have made; well: but if ye
worship not, ye shall be cast the same hour into the midst of a burning fiery
furnace; and who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?
of fear of God is seen in man's hatred of God and his love of idolatry with all
its evil companions. Romans 1:21-32 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not
as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their
foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became
fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like
to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 24
Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own
hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25 Who changed the
truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the
Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. 26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for
even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in
their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and
receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. 28 And
even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over
to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 29 Being
filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness,
maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30
Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil
things, disobedient to parents, 31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers,
without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit
such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them
that do them.
answer to why men would worship idols is the blindness, stupidity, and hardness
of the heart. Psalm
115:4-8 Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men's hands. They have
mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not: They have ears,
but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not: They have hands, but
they handle not: feet have they, but they walk not: neither speak they through
their throat. They that make them are like unto them; so is every one that
trusteth in them.
control such a god as David describes and rebels against the God who does as he
115:3 But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased. Man
is so deceived in his depravity that he cannot see that he is feeding on ashes. Isaiah
44:14-20 He heweth him down cedars, and taketh the cypress and the oak, which he
strengtheneth for himself among the trees of the forest: he planteth an ash, and
the rain doth nourish it. Then shall it be for a man to burn: for he will take
thereof, and warm himself; yea, he kindleth it, and baketh bread; yea, he maketh
a god, and worshippeth it; he maketh it a graven image, and falleth down
thereto. He burneth part thereof in the fire; with part thereof he eateth flesh;
he roasteth roast, and is satisfied: yea, he warmeth himself, and saith, Aha, I
am warm, I have seen the fire: And the residue thereof he maketh a god, even his
graven image: he falleth down unto it, and worshippeth it, and prayeth unto it,
and saith, Deliver me; for thou art my god. They have not known nor understood:
for he hath shut their eyes, that they cannot see; and their hearts, that they
cannot understand. And none considereth in his heart, neither is there knowledge
nor understanding to say, I have burned part of it in the fire; yea, also I have
baked bread upon the coals thereof; I have roasted flesh, and eaten it: and
shall I make the residue thereof an abomination? shall I fall down to the stock
of a tree? He feedeth on ashes: a
deceived heart hath turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say,
Is there not a lie in my right hand?
depravity is evident from the lust that permeates this whole world system. 1
John 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of
the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
depravity is evident in the fact that men by nature go astray and never seek
after God on their own. Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one
to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
Man's depravity is evident in that no matter how wise he becomes his wisdom never leads him to God. 1 Corinthians 1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
PREACH THE DOCTRINE OF THE TOTAL HEREDITARY DEPRAVITY OF MAN BECAUSE IT IS SUCH
A VALUABLE DOCTRINE
doctrine of the total hereditary depravity of man is truth and truth is always
23:23 Buy the truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and
Someone once said that we should sell all other things and buy truth and we
should never sell truth for any price, no matter how high.
is truth and truth is essential to true freedom. John
8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
There can be no real freedom without truth. Lies can never give one true
freedom. I am thinking of the Iraqi official they called “Baghdad Bob.” At
one point he was on Television telling the people that there was not an American
service man within a hundred miles of Baghdad when our men were encircling the
place from which he was broadcasting at the time. His lie gained freedom for no
one. Truth makes you free. And, Dear Reader, the truth about total hereditary
depravity will free you from many foolish ideas.
is truth and truth is essential to our practical sanctification. John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
No one can doubt the cleansing, sanctifying power of the Word of God. It is very
effectual in that when applied to the heart by the Holy Spirit.
brings man down into the dust and magnifies Christ as the essential and
all-sufficient Saviour. Matthew
1:21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he
shall save his people from their sins.
magnifies God as the God of all grace. 1
Peter 5:10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory
by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect,
stablish, strengthen, settle you.
makes sense of the teaching of salvation that is wholly of grace from start to
finish so that it will be sure to all the seed. Romans
4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise
might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that
also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all.
Anything else cheapens grace.
shows the necessity of regeneration and gives God all the glory for that
3:5,7 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of
water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 7 Marvel not
that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. John 1:13 Which were born, not of
blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
establishes the necessity of the effectual call to salvation. Romans 9:11 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done
any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not
of works, but of him that calleth;).
magnifies the atoning and cleansing power of the blood of Christ. 1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have
fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us
from all sin. John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and
saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
Revelation 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first
begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that
loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood.
provokes gratitude in the hearts of the saved because they see how truly
undeserving they were and are of God's great salvation. Ephesians
2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is
the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
establishes the doctrine of unconditional election by showing how utterly
unworthy all of us were and that there was nothing in us that provoked God to
choose us. Deuteronomy
7:7-8 The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were
more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: 8 But
because the LORD loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had
sworn unto your fathers, hath the LORD brought you out with a mighty hand, and
redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of
further establishes the doctrine of unconditional election by proving that
anything seen or foreseen in us, such as foreseen repentance and faith, or gifts
and graces of God and therefore no ground for his choosing us.
am reminded of an ABA brother who vehemently opposed these doctrines with whom I
was talking one day between sessions at a messenger meeting. In the conversation
I asked him, “Where did you get the faith with which you trusted the Lord
Jesus Christ as your Saviour?”
answered, after a little thought on the matter, “I conjured it up within
said, “If all the faith you have in Christ is something you conjured up within
yourself you will go to hell.”
did I say such a harsh thing? I said it because faith that saves is a gift of
God, not something one conjures up within himself. Philippians
1:29 For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on
him, but also to suffer for his sake. It is obvious from this verse that faith is a
gift of God. In fact, the Confession of Faith of the American Baptist Association
believe that repentance and faith are sacred duties, and also inseparable
graces, wrought in our souls in regeneration (Mark 1:15; Acts 11 :18; Eph. 2:8;
1 John 5:1) . . . .” (Article VIII). According
to this, faith is a grace that is wrought in the soul in regeneration.
is a far cry from being a faith that is conjured up within the heart of a
is worth noting also that this ABA Confession also declares that repentance is a
grace wrought in the soul in regeneration. This is in keeping with the word of
God. Acts 5:31 Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a
Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. This
verse shows that repentance, like faith, is a gift of God. God has highly
exalted Christ “for to give repentance.” In Article VII of the
same confession, it is set forth that the evidence of regeneration “appears
in the holy fruits of repentance, and faith, and newness of life.” There
is not a smidgen of evidence in the Bible or in this confession that either
faith or repentance are something that one can conjure up within himself. They
are gifts and graces of God. Acts
11:18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God,
saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.
doctrine of total hereditary depravity shows that foreseen faith could not be
the grounds for our election. Faith is a gift of God that he determined and
purposed to give to his elect. It is, therefore, called “the faith of God’s
elect.” Titus 1:1 Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ,
according to the faith of God’s elect, and the acknowledging of the truth
which is after godliness.
doctrine of total hereditary depravity magnifies the drawing and quickening
power of the Holy Spirit by showing man's inability and unwillingness to come to
5:40 And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life. Because of man’s natural unwillingness to come to Christ and his
consequent inability to come to Christ, the result of his depravity, he must be
effectually drawn to Christ.
John 6:44,65 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw
him: and I will raise him up at the last day. 65 And he said, Therefore said I
unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my
Father. Man’s depraved nature renders him incapable
of coming to Christ unless it is given to him by God to come. This he does in
the day of his power. Psalm
110:3 Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power. Therefore the Psalmist exults in the fact that God
has not only chosen to salvation those who will be saved but has caused and will
cause all those chosen to salvation to approach unto him. Psalm
65:4 Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee,
that he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy
house, even of thy holy temple.
doctrine that is hated by so many wonderfully shows the absolute necessity of
the death of Christ. Romans 3:24-26 Being justified freely by his grace
through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 25 Whom God hath set forth to be
a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the
remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; 26 To declare,
I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier
of him which believeth in Jesus.
Were men not depraved by nature, some would surely never sin. However, since all
have sinned and come short of the glory of God, the death of Christ is
absolutely essential for the salvation of sinners. Acts
17:3 Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again
from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ.
magnifies the wonderful, sovereign mercy of God showing that our salvation is
not because we willed or we ran to obtain it but that God sovereignly bestowed
it on hell-deserving sinners Romans 9:16 So then it is not of
him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
The depraved, unregenerate sinner will not will to come to Christ of his own
volition or inclination. Therefore it is not of him that he wills to come to
Christ but it is of God who in mercy and grace draws him to Christ and gives him
the faith and the willingness to lay hold of Christ.
magnifies the great love of God by showing how unlovely and unloving we were
until he called us by his grace. Jeremiah 31:3 The LORD hath
appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting
love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.
Because he set his love on his elect before the foundation of the world, he has
drawn and will draw them unto Jesus Christ.
PREACH THE DOCTRINE OF THE TOTAL HEREDITARY DEPRAVITY OF MAN BECAUSE THERE IS A
WONDERFUL REMEDY FOR MAN'S DEPRAVITY
remedy for man's depravity is the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 2:1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and
sins. Colossians 2:13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision
of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all
trespasses. There is not other remedy for depraved sinners. All are dead in
trespasses and sins and it is only because God quickens his elect that they are
enabled to come to Christ. His people are willing in the day of his power.
remedy for man's depravity is the calling power of God. There is an interesting
truth set forth in I Corinthians 1:23-24. 1 Corinthians 1:23-24 But we preach
Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks
foolishness; 24 But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the
power of God, and the wisdom of God. In these verses there are three groups
of people considered. The first group are composed of Jews who see Christ
crucified as a stumbling block. The second group is composed of Greek
intellectuals who consider the notion that Christ could save by dying to be
foolishness. The third group is composed of both Jews and Greeks. These see
Christ crucified as the power and wisdom of God. What is the difference in this
last group? They are called to salvation while the others are not. But unto
them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the
wisdom of God.
remedy for man's depravity is the cleansing, atoning, reconciling, sanctifying,
propitiating power of the blood of Jesus Christ. Revelation
1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten
of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us,
and washed us from our sins in his own blood. Yes, Dear Reader, there is power in the blood
of Christ. Only through his death, his shed blood, and his finished work can a
sinner be saved. That is God’s remedy for sinners.
remedy for man's depravity is the preserving power of God. Jude
1 Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are
sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called.
If God did not graciously keep us secure we would surely fall and be lost. We
cannot take credit for our perseverance and preservation. It, like the rest of
our salvation is of the Lord.
remedy for man's depravity is the glorifying power of God and his Christ. Philippians 3:21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be
fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is
able even to subdue all things unto himself. One day our dear and precious Lord will return
for us and will change our vile bodies and fashion them in his glorified
likeness. What a day that will be. Then we will be free from every trace and
stain of sin. Then we will have experienced God’s full and free remedy for our
depravity inherited from our father Adam.
conclusion let me say that the doctrine of Total
Hereditary Depravity sets forth the necessity of
Saviour who really saves,
salvation that really saves,
atonement that really atones,
election that was really an election of God,
calling that really calls,
perseverance that really causes one to persevere,
preservation that really preserves.
shows that salvation must be of the Lord in its origination.
shows that salvation must be of the Lord in its execution.
shows that salvation must be of the Lord in its application.
It shows that salvation must be of the Lord in its demonstration.
It shows that salvation must be of the Lord in its consummation.This doctrine should be preached. This doctrine must be preached. If we are to be pure from the blood of all men we must declare it for it is one of the vital ingredients in the whole counsel of God.
DINING HALL AT HILL TRIBES CHILDREN CENTER, MAE RIM, THAILAND, DAMAGED BY STORM
Dining Hall That was Damaged
Another View of Dining Hall
THAILAND MISSION NEWS
Report on The Sovereign Grace Independent Baptist School of Theology of Thailand
By Wayne Camp
When I planned this report about The Sovereign Grace Independent Baptist School of Theology, that was all I intended to write about in this report. However, since I started organizing the material for this report, there has been a storm at the Children’s Center and has blown down the dining hall where the children and students eat their meals. This dining hall was constructed of wood and bamboo with a leaf roof and was susceptible to such damage. The building on the left with the leaf roof is the one that was damaged. The one on the right is where we conduct classes for the school. The building has been temporarily repaired so that it is usable but we are making plans to rebuild it when Bro. Anond returns to Thailand. We plan to rebuild it in a more permanent structure. We hope to build a steel structure for the roof. It will cost about $2000 to $2500 to build it so that it will not blow down as easily as this one did.
At the moment the funds are not available to rebuild the dining hall. God willing we will be able to begin construction in June after Bro. Anond is back at work in Thailand. In the meantime, the children will continue to use it in its temporarily repaired condition. Thanks to Bro. Daniel, Bro. Anond's brother, the building was repaired in a timely manner.
THE GRAND OPENING
November 2, 2002, was a happy day at the Hill Tribes Children’s Center. In the evening we gathered for a good meal and then the grand opening services for the children’s center and the SGIB School of Theology. There was a good crowd gathered for this event. Several groups came from the various churches and a good number of folks came from the surrounding neighborhood. Though no official count was made, I suspect there were 200 or more present for this meeting. Below is a picture of some of the congregation present. The two pictures do not show all present for many were outside the building and more in the building who were not included in these two pictures. GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS ATTEND
Five Thai government officials attended the grand opening. The ones who spoke were very favorable in their comments concerning the Children’s Center. The picture above shows three of them and two others were seated to their left. The notion that you cannot operate a children’s home, school, mission work and churches in Thailand without having some costly foundation and central organization such as some have is just not true. The Buddhist government of Thailand is very tolerant of and kind to our work there even though we have refused to set up a foundation or a centralized governing organization of the churches, the children’s center and the school. The presence and participation of these government officials at the grand opening of the center and school give evidence of that. The children from the center go to Thai government schools. We have been paying fees for their attendance but have been informed by one government official that they hope to pick up this fee in the near future.
Bro. Bill Lee and wife, Janice, are pictured below. They are eating at the grand opening meal. It was served outside.
GETTING SCHOOL GOING
The first full day of school at the Sovereign Grace Independent Baptist School of Theology was exciting and very gratifying.
In our very first class in English, most of the class learned the alphabet. I bought some flash cards with the alphabet on them and by he end of class they were recognizing the letters when I would hold the cards up at random. They could also say the alphabet in unison without my coaching them. Of course, they had the advantage of using most of the characters of our alphabet in the La Hu language. Also, the Li Su language uses letters that are also similar to some of ours. (Another classroom shot).
The most interesting part came when I was teaching Theology. I was introducing the course, and as I had during the Bible Conference. I was going over the attributes of God that we would be studying. I spent a good amount of time before the break going over the attribute of Sovereignty. During the break, two students stayed behind to talk with me about the study. Daniel, Bro. Anond’s brother who is graduating from a seminary in Bangkok Sunday night but is a student here also, said, “I know that it is true that God is sovereign and that he does as he wills where and when he wills, as you show, but it is so hard to believe. There is something inside me that keeps fighting against what the Bible says.”
I said, “You have just hit the nail on the head. Our human reasoning and old nature fights against the exercise of Divine Sovereignty.”
I then showed the two brethren Isa. 55:8-9. Isaiah 55:8-9 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
I asked Daniel to read it while the other brother followed along in his Bible. When Daniel finished he said, “Amen, Praise God, his thoughts are really higher than our thoughts and that is why something inside us fights against the truth.”
The four of us who were there rejoiced together talking about the greatness of our great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. When the rest of the class returned from break, Daniel related his experience to them and read to them Isa. 55:8-9. Experiences like this assure me that the sacrifices my wife and the church made to allow me to be there were all worthwhile. She and the church I pastor will truly be rewarded for the sacrifice they are making that I may do this very needful work. The others who are supporting this work will also be rewarded for their efforts.
The students seemed to really enjoy beginning to learn the way to prepare a sermon. I learned that they have a problem and will have to use English letters and numbers to make outlines because they do not have some of the characters in their language to set up the various levels of an outline.
I scheduled one hour each Thursday and Friday for questions and discussion times. The first day there was a young man who asked a question. Though he is not certain if he is called to preach, he is interested in going to villages where there are no churches and teaching the Bible with a view to eventually helping a preacher start a church. He appears to be one of the best students.
His question was, “How can young churches survive without help from the United States? How can they have support for a pastor?”
This gave me the opportunity to teach on giving. Due to their economy I showed them that if the families in the church, including the pastor, harvest 100 boxes of rice (20 litre boxes) they can either sell 10 boxes and give the money to the church to be used for pastoral support or they can give the 10 boxes of rice to the church to be given to the pastor. I then included peanuts, vegetables, pigs, chickens, corn, fruit and whatever I could think of that they raise in the villages. For the most part, the lesson was heartily received. And, before the term ended I was able to see this lesson bearing fruit in some of the churches as they made plans and moves to support their pastors better.
This is one area about which Bro. Lee and I have been very concerned. I was really surprised and pleased that the young brother brought it up in our question and discussion session on the first day.
Because of this interest in church support, I began a study of The Support of the Church in our Ecclesiology classes the next week. I know that this subject should normally be dealt with later in the study of the church. But, in the times I had been over there and among the churches I had learned that you adjust to meet needs when they arise and this was an urgent need in some of the churches.
I explained to the students that the churches and individual members would be greatly blessed if they practiced giving of tithes and offerings. I saw the young man who asked the question apparently praying while the discussion period was still going on. It appeared God had really convicted him about the matter and he was praying for the faith to follow the biblical teaching on the matter. (Students house)
Please pray that the preachers and churches will continue to grow in this grace of giving. I am reminded of Paul’s words on this matter. 2 Corinthians 8:7 Therefore, as ye abound in every thing, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that ye abound in this grace also.
The tremendous challenge of this work is ever before me even while I am here at home. The call of God to this work, the excitement of the students as they learn, and the great need that is recognized by the churches motivate me to continue it.
Shortly after teaching on support of the pastors during our question and answer session we visited the church at Hoe Sum Suk. I preached in the morning service and then Bro. Anond and I met with several of the men of the church and discussed how they could help their pastor stay in school. We taught a short lesson (30 minutes) on the bible doctrine of giving and they agreed they would give 1/10th of their crops and any other income or increase they had to the church and give it to the pastor who could sell what he did not need for his family and thus support him.
Sitting for over an hour discussing this with these men I was impressed with the solidness of this group. One wanted to know, hypothetically, if they should still tithe if they did not especially like the pastor. I told them that when we give our tithes and offerings through the church we are giving to God, not the pastor. And, unless he does something that would disqualify him from being pastor, they should continue to support him and should keep giving their tithes and offerings through the church even if they asked the pastor to resign.
I will write more later about the school and the four months I spent teaching and preaching in the churches. I also want to write about the prison ministry and the children’s center.
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