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Cummings writes:

Man is totally sinful in his intellect, affections and will. Man is not just sick with sin; he is dead in sin. Man is "utterly indisposed, disabled and made opposite to all good, and wholly inclined to all evil"(WCF, chap 6, sec. 4). Scripture confirms this doctrine. "The sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God" (Romans 8:7,8). "Every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood" (Genesis 8:21). "There is no one who understands, no one who seeks God" (Romans 3:11). "You were dead in your transgressions and sins" (Ephesians 2:1). "The Lord saw how great man's wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time" (Genesis 6:5)

So the Reformed faith begins with the Biblical truth that man is totally depraved. Now this does not mean utterly and completely depraved. Man does not always do the most evil of which he is capable(God prevents this through his common grace). But his moral leanings are away from God; if man had his "druthers", he would not choose to seek God; he would run as fast as he could from a holy God.

The Reformed, and in my view the Biblical, belief about man is that he is incapable of turning to God without first being made alive. He must be quickened by the Holy Spirit before he can even think of turning to God. Man in his own power simply cannot and does not wish to turn to God, but instead to his own selfish desires. This is total depravity.

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