Wednesday, October 22, 2008


. . . And you hath he quickened, who were DEAD in trespasses
and sins . . . and were by nature the CHILDREN OF WRATH, even as
others. -- Eph. 2:1-3

. . . the soul that sinneth, it shall die. -- Ezek. 18:4 (20)

When Jesus saw him lie . . . saith unto him, WILT thou be made
whole? -- John 5:6

It is not a question of whether or not a sinner is dead or
not. God quickens the sinner or not (for He does), but the question is how
God quickens the sinner and when. All unsaved sinners are dead "in
trespasses and sins" (dead spiritually) and are totally the "CHILDREN OF
WRATH." All sinners, without exception either are or were once the CHILDREN
OF WRATH. They would all have gone to hell and experienced God’s wrath,
except that they had repented and believed on Christ. While it is true that
mankind is universally "dead in trespasses and sins" (spiritually dead),
equally true­ each unsaved sinner is NOT totally dead.

Only the spirit of a sinner is totally dead. The soul is not
dead; the will is not dead; the mind is not dead; the body is not dead.
Each sinner is in need of having his dead spirit quickened, but his living
soul, will, mind, and body are in need of being MADE WHOLE. Each and every
unsaved person has the ability, given to him by God, to desire to be made
whole, to be interested in self preservation, and to respond to gospel
words, to the Spirit of God, and to the genuine offer of grace, with a
"Yes!" or "No!". (This implies no inherent goodness or spark of goodness
that is deserving of salvation. There is none good but God.)

There are some that would misapply the Lazarus analogy of
physical death of the body, to illustrate the total deadness of a sinner.
But can they be addressing a sinner's body? Unlike Lazarus, does it not
move, sense, act, sin, and die? Can they be addressing the sinner's soul?
Does it not think, sense, desire, sin, and die? If it be argued that the
soul is unconscious, it can be argued that the soul is not conscious or
aware of sin and, therefore, not responsible for sin. It could be further
argued that God must make that dead soul irresistibly sin, without an act
of its own free will. Total Robotivity!

While the universal, total depravity of humanity is a valid
assessment, it is also true that one hundred percent total depravity does
not exist in each unsaved human being. No unsaved sinner is as sinful and
depraved as he can be, hence, no unsaved sinner is one hundred percent
totally depraved. In order to get a proper perspective of the extent of a
sinner's depravity, we must examine a dead sinner in the scriptures in
order to establish how much ability, life, and free will that a sinner
really does have. A perfect example of this would be Cornelius, the
Italian. Cornelius proves that there is no such thing in an individual as
"TOTAL" depravity, death, inability, nor robotivity, according to the

All Dead Sinners Are Capable of Being Devout, Fearing God, and Prayer

There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a
centurion of the band called the Italian band, A DEVOUT man, and one that
FEARED God with all his houses, which gave much alms to the people, and
PRAYED to God alway. -- Acts 10:1,2

And said, Cornelius, THY PRAYER IS HEARD, and thine alms are
had in remembrance in the sight of God. -- Acts 10:31

Here, we find a depraved sinner, dead in trespasses and sins,
who is capable of being "devout" and able to "fear" God. He is also capable
of "prayer" and of having his prayer "heard" by God. Oh, but what about the
objection that God heareth not sinners? Who says things like that? Self
righteous Pharisees? Find a spiritually ignorant sinner, who is devout, who
fears God, who tries to pray, who follows the light, which lighteth every
man that cometh into the world, and you have found a sinner, who is not far
from the kingdom of God. Spiritually ignorant? Yes! (Acts 10:25)
Spiritually dead? Yes! Totally dead? No! Depraved? Yes! Totally depraved?
No! Unable to "will" God's mercy? Yes! Unable to "will" to accept God's
offer of mercy? No! Total inability? No! Lost? Yes! Total robotivity? No?

All Dead Sinners Capable of Good Report, Being Just, Working Righteousness

And they said, Cornelius the centurion, a JUST man, and one
that FEARETH God, and of GOOD REPORT among all the nation of the Jews, was
warned from God by an holy angel to send for thee into his house, and to
hear words of thee. -- Acts 10:22

But in every nation he that FEARETH him, and WORKETH
RIGHTEOUSNESS [repent and believe], is accepted with him. -- Acts 10:35

Cornelius, was an unregenerated, depraved, spiritually dead,
ignorant, honest, moral, just, of good report, religious CHILD OF WRATH! He
was capable as are other dead, depraved Gentile children of wrath of
"working righteousness" without works by repenting and believing. His
future destiny was not yet etched in stone, for he WAS WARNED of God to
escape the wrath to come. WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! But he was not a robot.

All Dead Sinners Are Granted Repentance Unto Life

When they heard these things, they held their peace, and
glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles [all of them]

All depraved, dead sinners are granted light, grace, and
repentance unto life. Whether they accept it and act on it or not is
another matter. Cornelius was one, who did accept that which was granted
and offered. He heeded God's WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! But he was not a robot.

All Dead Sinners Are Able to be Saved and to Receive the
Remission of Sins

Who shall tell thee WORDS [that will save], whereby thou and
all thy house shall be saved. -- Acts 11:14

Simon a tanner . . . he shall tell thee what thou oughtest TO
DO. -- Acts 10:6

To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name
WHOSOVER BELIEVETH in him shall receive remission of sins. -- Acts 10:43

The word is NIGH THEE, even in thy mouth, and IN THY HEART:
that is, the WORD OF FAITH, which we preach [not the word of election].
-- Romans 10:8

Regardless of how devout, regardless of how much he feared
God, regardless of how much he prayed, regardless of his prayers and alms
going up to God (for a remembrance), regardless of how religious,
regardless of how moral and just, regardless of how good a report he had,
regardless of the repentance unto life, which had been granted to him,
Cornelius, was a CHILD OF wrath still had to personally receive the
remission of his sins and salvation. The only way that he could be saved
was to hear gospel words and to respond to them affirmatively, by repenting
and believing. Total robotivity? No! Good news! Yes!

--by Herb Evans

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