Q&A 10: What Do You Think About Total Depravity?

Question: What do you think about total depravity?


Having been asked about my own perspective on Calvinism, I think it would be helpful for me to walk through what are known as the 5 points or the classic acronym TULIP. I should note that I spoke to this issue some years ago in an SBC Life article. That article can be accessed at danielakin.com . My views have not changed in any real sense since I wrote that article. In fact, my views have not changed concerning the issue of Calvinism since I began teaching at Criswell College back in 1988.

When it comes to the issue of total depravity, I simply cannot see how anyone can read the Bible and not come to understand that we come into this world with a fallen sin nature that we soon follow with moral culpable acts of disobedience against our God. Romans 3 is so crystal clear on this. There is none righteous no not one. There is none who seeks after God. In other words we come into this world with a sin nature that is bent toward and determined to sin. To say it another way, I believe every molecule in our body is infected with the disease and the germ of sin. If God did not take the initiative in reaching out to us through the ministry of His Spirit and the Word, no one would take a single step in the direction of God. We are at the very core of our being rebellious sinners who wish to idolize ourselves in arrogance and pride. Therefore, when it comes to the doctrine of total depravity, I believe that the Bible is crystal clear.