“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 6:5)
“Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ…” (2 Corinthians 10:5)
“But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things.” (Romans 2:2)
The Biblical doctrine of human depravity is a doctrine that can be seen in action. When one tunes in to the news, one hears of murders, fraud, greed, arson, rape, shootings, kidnappings, etc. The natural man blames God, “If God is good why is there all the bad?” The student of Scripture, however, answers with, “The wages of sin is death…” and “There is a way that seems right unto man, but the ends thereof are the ways of death.” God is not the cause of all the bad. Sinful man is the cause of all the bad. The fallen, free will of man is the cause of all evils in this world.
We see in the quoted passages above that man thinks and imagines evil continually. One might argue, “Yeah, but…that was before the flood, we are a better people now.” Our answer to that is, “Nope.” The Lord Jesus said, He would return at a time, that resembled Noah’s time. That time was defined by God in Genesis 6:5, “Every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. Take note to God’s words, Every, only, continually. This is depravity.
Notice that God speaks of the mind, the thoughts, the imagination. He isn’t speaking to actions yet. When a preacher, like myself, proclaims the depravity of man, we risk losing credibility. We say, “Man is depraved” but when a person looks around s/he sees kindness, generosity, love, loyalty. “Where is this depravity the preacher speaks of?”
This depravity stews, spews and scorns….. in the mind. Our Lord Jesus told us that the world will love it’s own, but hate the Christ-ians, because He chose us and not them, He picked us out of the world and not them. (John 15) The depravity is there, but it is hidden in the mind of man. Depravity reveals itself in times of trouble or excitement. Case in point, (2) two Spring Breaks ago, a young girl was gang raped with (100) a hundred (Estimated) persons recording the rape with their gods, err, rather, their cell phones. No one helped her, they only recorded the worst moment of her life. This is depravity. This is how the world loves it’s own. Depravity is like a possessing demon, one must pull it out and cause it to manifest.
“The world will love it’s own,” this is what our Lord tells us. The world will love it’s own, but it will rage against Holy God.
Imagine if you will, a very tight knit and close community. They all love each other and care for each other. In walks a stranger to this very tight knit community, and he is mobbed and beaten, tortured and dispatched by this close, knit, loving community. This is how depravity works. Human depravity, capable of all manner of sin, in fact, humanity is wed to sin. In our quoted passage above, Romans 2:2, Paul uses the word, commit. Commit…committed to……I think of marriage. Humanity is committed to sin. Humanity is married to sin.
In the previous chapter, Paul lists sins that man is committed to: “Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness, full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity, whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, without understanding, covenant-breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 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.” Most of these sins are sins of the mind.
Humanity has joined hand in hand in this world, even so, says, the Word of God, They shall not go un punished.
In all reality, it is, the World vs. Holy God.
Depravity was birthed at the fall of man. Depravity has grown up to be big and strong. Depravity is called by different names, carnal nature, the flesh, and the old man.
However, the Christ-ian has been blessed with a sound mind. A mind that loves the LORD Thy God and thy neighbor; a mind that has been renewed, and is still in the process of being renewed everyday. The Christ-ian mind is obedient to the LORD God, Who renewed it. The Christ-ian mind is the mind of Christ (Philippians 2). The Christ-ian mind thinks on these things: truth, honesty, and what is just, what is pure, what is lovely, and whatsoever is of good report.
Of course, the insipid old man, the carnal nature, the lusting flesh are still around and they pop into our minds at the worst of times, mocking us, and prodding us to quit. Pray through all of that. When they get loud and bring evil thoughts into mind, you pray louder and louder. Shout if you must but, Pray through it. Know this, one day we will be in Heaven with Him, and they will be in Hell without Him.
Depravity is the evil in the mind that is hidden by smiles. Depravity is a politician shaking hands with another politician, they are smiling and laughing, yet, in their mind they are saying, “I wish this guy would die.” Depravity is, “Hello, it is nice to meet you,” while the mind is thinking about fornicating. Depravity is, “I wish all Christians would die and go to hell.” That is an actual quote from a comment thread under a Franklin Graham news article I read months ago. If one wants to see or rather read, the foaming at the mouth, depraved citizenship, look up an article on Franklin Graham or his sister, Anne Graham Lotz on yahoo or google. Scroll down to the comments sections and you will read, for yourself, the hatred and evil imagining the people have for God and His own.
If one understands human depravity one will never be surprised by the evil that is perpetrated. One will not be surprised by be-headings, Christ-ians being burned alive or dropped into vats of acid. One will not be surprised when a man kills a police officer or a politicians is wrapped up in scandal. One will not be surprised when persons they have known for years simply, fall away from the faith. One will not be surprised by a mother killing her children, or a religious figure falling into sin.
To be human is to be depraved; To be human is to be married to sin and pleasured, thereby.
To be Christ-ian is to bring thoughts under constraint and to think independently, upon good things, good things like honour, loyalty, love, respect, truth, justice, mercy, grace, and above all, Think about and talk to God.