When I'm following my self-imposed schedule, I blog "Reformed" on Sundays - so I'm planning getting through TULIP for the next few weeks, on Sundays.
This all falls or stands together (with the possible exception of Limited Atonement), so I'm going to start at the beginning.
T - Total Depravity of Man.
“Man, by his fall Into a state of sin, hath wholly lost all ability of will to any spiritual good accompanying salvation; so as a natural man, being altogether averse from good, and dead in sin, is not able, by his own strength, to convert himself, or to prepare himself thereunto.” (Westminster Confession of Faith, Ch. IX, sec. III.)
There is a list of Scripture proofs (I'll add them at the bottom) but to explain "total depravity" in my own words is easy.
It's not that we're all equally bad, or that all of us are as bad as we could possibly be.
It's that no matter what part of our own selves we examine, that part is tainted with sin.
It's the knowing my own self well enough, and dropping my own pride far enough to know that there is nothing in me that would seek after God, unless He was the one bringing me into life.
- I Cor. 2:14: The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them, because they are spiritually judged.
- Rom. 5:12: Therefore, as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin; and so death passed unto all men, for that all sinned.
- II Cor. 1:9: Yea, we ourselves had the sentence of death within ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God who raiseth the dead.
- Eph. 2:1-3: And you did He make alive, when ye were dead through your trespasses and sins, wherein ye once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the powers of the air, of the spirit that now worketh in the sons of disobedience; among whom ye also all once lived in the lusts of your flesh, doing the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.
- Eph. 2:12: Ye were at that time separate from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.
- Jer. 13:23: Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard his spots? Then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.
- Rom. 3:10-12: As it is written, There is none righteous, no not one;
- There is none that understandeth, There is none that seeketh after God;
They have all turned aside, they are together become unprofitable;
There is none that doeth good, no, not so much as one.
- Job 14:4: Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one.
- I Cor. 1:18: For the word of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us who are saved it is the power of God.
- Acts 13:41: Behold, ye despisers, and wonder and perish; For I work a work in your days, A work which ye shall in no wise believe, if one declare it unto you.
- Prov. 30:12: There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes,
And yet are not washed from their filthiness.
- John 5:21: For as the Father raiseth the dead and giveth them life, even so the Son also giveth life to whom He will.
- John 6:53: Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood, ye have not life in yourselves.
- John 8:19: They said therefore unto Him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye know neither me, nor my Father; if ye knew me, ye would know my Father also.
- II Cor. 5:17: if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature.
- John 14:16: (And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may be with you forever,) even the Spirit of truth: whom the world cannot receive; for it beholdeth Him not, neither knoweth Him; ye know Him; for He abideth with you, and shall be in you.
- John 3:19: And this is the judgment, that light is come unto the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their works were evil.