Total Depravity heresy of Luther


By Dave Webster

28 October 2016 at 17:14

As a former fundamentalist Baptist pastor I can assure you that the Reformed Protestant doctrine of the Total Depravity of humanity is the most fundamentally disruptive and destructive heresy of the Luther/Calvin Reformed movement. Without it the greatest and most tragic schism in the Church would never have taken place — the Protestant rebellion simply COULD NOT have taken place. Total Depravity is the entire basis for the false notion that faith alone, a true gift of God, is alone the cause of one’s Salvation.

Total Depravity means there is nothing man can do that God could accept as helpful to his salvation. Total Depravity means not only man by very nature, from Adam’s Fall, is barred from Heaven but man has no ability of himself whatsoever to do anything about his condition. He cannot OF HIMSELF even freely chose to respond to the faith God puts in various measure into every human heart. The claim then is that its faith ALONE THAT ACTUALLY DOES THE SAVING. Then in addition, if it is ALONE the divine impartation of faith into the heart of those God chooses to save that saves, then salvation has nothing to do with one’s free will to accept or reject faith’s voice and call.

That indeed was the view of Luther and Calvin and that has been the view of most evangelical fundamentalist Protestants to this day. This is why these also believe that even the most egregious sin committed by the “saved” cannot UN-save him. That’s the “once saved always saved” heresy. Once saved always saved and salvation by faith alone has not only led many into a very dangerous false assurance but nothing has created more animosity among so many non-Christians who have been led to believe this is true Christianity. With the lost having no real part in Salvation, with God merely choosing who He wants to save, leaving all the rest to perish in Hell, who could blame anyone for this negative reaction?
This is not however the end of the damage this heresy had caused. Reformed theologians and teachers, seeing the injustice of this thinking have over the years decided to alter their views. Oh, not to deny the heresy Total Depravity or that it is alone God’s gift of faith that saves, (to do that would admit you’re Catholic!) but to simply deny the teaching of Jesus, the Bible and the Church that “many” shall end up in an eternal Hell. They have decided to accept the view that in the end all will end up chosen of God to Salvation! That doctrine is usually called “Universalism.”

Now they would never want to deny Total Depravity and Luther’s “Bondage of the Human Will” because that gives them the excuse to live in their sins and pass the buck to God for them. This was the reason Luther created his “Bondage of the Will” and it’s the reason Francis has bought into the doctrine. Francis however does not have a completely Universal Salvation, he clearly wants to leave room for the damnation of the “ridged” and the resisters of his new toleration of human sin. That’s a reference to the same group of Catholics who are voting for Donald Trump, the Deplorables, the Irredeemables.

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Remnant Disciple

Traditional Catholic; member of Jesus' Remnant Army; leader of a Jesus to Mankind Prayer group since 2010. Prayer group leader for about 25 years.