A. Negatively ? not that every sinner is
(a) destitute of conscience for the existence of strong impulses to right, and of remorse for wrongdoing show that conscience is often keen or
(b) devoid of all qualities pleasing to men and useful when judged by a human standard for the existence of such qualities is recognized by Christ.
(c) A sinners is prone to every form of sin, for certain forms of sin exclude certain others and
(d) intense as he can be in his selfishness and opposition to God, he becomes worse every day.
<430809> John 8:9 ? ?And they, when they heard it, went out one by one, beginning from the eldest, even unto the last? ( <430753>John 7:53; 8:11, though not written by John, is a perfectly true narrative, descended from the apostolic age). The muscles of a dead frog?s leg will contract when a current of electricity is sent into them. So the dead soul will thrill at the touch of the divine law. Natural conscience, combined with the principle of self-love, may even prompt choice of the good, though no love for God is in the choice. Bengel: ?We have lost our likeness to God but there remains notwithstanding an indelible nobility which we ought to revere both in ourselves and in others. We still have remained men, to be conformed to that likeness, through the divine blessing to which the will of man should subscribe. This they forget who speak evil of human nature. Absalom fell out of his father?s favor but the people, for all that, recognized in him the son of the king.?
<411021> Mark 10:21 ? ?And Jesus looking upon him loved him.? These very qualities, however, may show that their possessors are sinning against great light and are the guiltier; cf. <390106>Malachi 1:6 ? ?A son honoreth his father and a servant his master: if then I am a father, where is mine honor? and if I am a master where is my fear?? John Caird, Fund. Ideas of Christianity, 2:75 ? ?The assertor of the total depravity of human nature, of its absolute blindness and incapacity, presupposes in himself and in others the presence of a criterion or principle of good, in virtue of which he discerns himself to be wholly evil. Yet, the very proposition that human nature is wholly evil would be unintelligible unless it was false. Consciousness of sin is a negative sign of the possibility of restoration. But it is not in itself proof that the possibility will become actuality.? A ruined temple may have beautiful fragments of fluted
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