Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | December 24, 2014

“Total Depravity” makes us rely completely on the LORD for any hope.

Today’s devotion comes from Deuteronomy 31:19-30.  Here is a link to this Scripture –

I quote only the following verses.

“19 “Now therefore, write this song for yourselves, and teach it to the sons of Israel;  put it on their lips, so that this song may be a witness for Me against the sons of Israel.  20 For when I bring them into the land flowing with milk and honey, which I swore to their fathers, and they have eaten and are satisfied and become prosperous, then they will turn to other gods and serve them, and spurn Me and break My covenant.  21 Then it shall come about, when many evils and troubles have come upon them, that this song will testify before them as a witness (for it shall not be forgotten from the lips of their descendants);  for I know their intent which they are developing today, before I have brought them into the land which I swore.”  22 So Moses wrote this song the same day, and taught it to the sons of Israel.”  Deuteronomy 31:19-22.


The LORD made Israel learn and remember a song (in Deuteronomy Chapter 32) which was a witness against Israel for the rebellion and sins committed by Israel.  This song seems harsh, through which the LORD declared His findings of fault, but this song made Israel rely completely on the LORD for any future hope.

Likewise, the finding of fault provided hope in the following Hebrews 8:8-12.

“8 For finding fault with them, He says,
“Behold, days are coming, says the Lord,
When I will effect a new covenant
With the house of Israel and with the house of Judah;
9 Not like the covenant which I made with their fathers
On the day when I took them by the hand
To lead them out of the land of Egypt;
For they did not continue in My covenant,
And I did not care for them, says the Lord.
10 “For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel
After those days, says the Lord:
I will put My laws into their minds,
And I will write them on their hearts.
And I will be their God,
And they shall be My people.
11 “And they shall not teach everyone his fellow citizen,
And everyone his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’
For all will know Me,
From the least to the greatest of them.
12 “For I will be merciful to their iniquities,
And I will remember their sins no more.”  Hebrews 8:8-12.

Likewise, being shut up under sin, provides hope.  “But the Scripture has shut up everyone under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.  But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed.  Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ,  so that we may be justified by faith.  But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.    For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.”    Galatians 3:22-26.

Likewise, “Total Depravity”, that man is dead in sin, may seem harsh (the “T” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation).  But, “Total Depravity” makes us completely rely on the LORD for any hope.

Our hope is not that another reading of the Law that will cause us to make us come to our senses.  Our hope is not that we will get wiser.  Our hope is not that we will exercise more will-power of our alleged free-will.  We are dead in sin.

Our only hope is that God chose us for salvation, God will make us alive, God will draw us to Christ, and God will preserve us to the very end.

Consider the following two Articles in The Canons of Dordt in the section titled FIRST HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of Divine Predestination.

Article 1.  As all men have sinned in Adam, lie under the curse, and are deserving of eternal death, God would have done no injustice by leaving them all to perish, and delivering them over to condemnation on account of sin, according to the words of the apostle, Romans 3:19, “that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.”  And verse 23:  “for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” And Romans 6:23:  “for the wages of sin is death.”

Article 7.  Election is the unchangeable purpose of God, whereby, before the foundation of the world, he hath out of mere grace, according to the sovereign good pleasure of his own will, chosen, from the whole human race, which had fallen through their own fault, from their primitive state of rectitude, into sin and destruction, a certain number of persons to redemption in Christ, whom he from eternity appointed the Mediator and Head of the elect, and the foundation of Salvation.

This elect number, though by nature neither better nor more deserving than the others, but with them involved in one common misery, God hath decreed to give to Christ, to be saved by him, and effectually to call and draw them to his communion by his Word and Spirit, to bestow upon them true faith, justification and sanctification;  and having powerfully preserved them in the fellowship of his Son, finally, to glorify them for the demonstration of his mercy, and for the praise of his glorious grace;  as it is written: “According as he hath chosen us in him, before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy, and without blame before him in love; having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to imself, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved,” Ephesians 1:4,5,6.  And elsewhere: “Whom he did predestinate, them he also called; and whom he called, them he also justified; and whom he justified, them he also glorified,” Romans 8:30.



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