Every thing that man desires and pursues, according to the dictates of his nature, is contrary to the law of GOD. Thus we read of GOD’s assessment of men before the flood, “And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” (Gen 6:5) Yet HIS assessment of them afterwards had not changed, “And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.” (Gen 8:21)
The Psalmist comments upon it as well, saying “The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.” (Psa 58:3) Then Paul reiterates the same fact as he quotes the blessed Psalmist in his letter to the Romans, “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes.” (Rom 3:10-18)
One would have to deny the very scriptures themselves to conclude that there is one shred of good in men, by nature, and yet we hear this notion declared every day, as men seek to glory in this flesh and speak about the “spark of good” that they perceive to be in every man. During this approaching season, such nonsense is played upon over and over as the “good deeds” and acts of charity which are exhibited by some are attributed to this never failing source of the “indomitable human nature” which rises above the fray and by its own free will acts upon its own secret source of goodness.
Yet the scripture says “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” (Jas 1:17) The true SOURCE of all “goodness” must indeed arise from HIM who alone is good. “Good and upright is the LORD: therefore will he teach sinners in the way.” (Psa 25:8) “O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.” (Psa 34:8) “I will praise thee for ever, because thou hast done it: and I will wait on thy name; for it is good before thy saints.” (Psa 52:9) “I will freely sacrifice unto thee: I will praise thy name, O LORD; for it is good.” (Psa 54:6) “Yea, the LORD shall give that which is good; and our land shall yield her increase.” (Psa 85:12) “For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.” (Psa 86:5)
May those who praise the supposed “goodness” of men have their tongues silenced and may the only praise be given to HIM who alone is worthy to be praised for HIS goodness. “For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.” (Psa 100:5) “Praise ye the LORD: for it is good to sing praises unto our God; for it is pleasant; and praise is comely.“ (Psa 147:1)
The LORD JESUS HIMSELF taught this doctrine as HE responded to that man (who sought to gain favor with HIM by referring to HIM as “good master”) with these words of rebuke, “Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God.” (Mar 10:18) Now if HE, in HIS own perfect humanity, declined to be called good, deferring all praise to HIS FATHER, how can any of the sinful potsherds of the earth, hear one call another “good”, with any sort of approval?
We have all looked on with horror and disgust at these despicable acts of murder and mayhem which seem to be occurring with increasing regularity. Most express complete bewilderment that a human being could commit such atrocities against their fellowman. This is usually articulated with an air of righteous indignation and the implication that those, who have done these acts, surely deserve the greatest of wrath, both from men and GOD.
Yet these are not aberrations of human nature, but, rather; revelations of what man is by nature. Every man, born of woman, is capable of these and even much fouler deeds. Each time a terrorist, sexual pervert, or wanton thief commits his unspeakable acts, it should serve to remind us, what we are by nature, even as David confessed, “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.” (Psa 51:5)
Apart from the restraining grace of GOD, there is not a one of us who would not resort to murder and atrocities of the most perverse sort. “Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain.” (Psa 76:10) “It is of the LORD'S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.” (Lam 3:22)
Only those who are unacquainted with their own true nature will deny it. As long as a man expects that he has, within himself, the ability and power to keep himself from sin, he will never cease to pursue his religious ways wherein he goes about to “establish his own righteousness.” (see Rom.10:3) Such a course is quite predictable and popular with the rank and file, and woe be to the man who would dare speak against such or challenge the status quo in calling the supposed “basic goodness” of men into question.
It is fair and accurate to state that the Law of GOD is revealed in order to manifest the sinful condition of men, rather than to subdue it. For the law’s weakness (see Rom.8:3) prevents it from altering the nature and course that men will take in the flesh. The law is only able to render aid to man if he is able to keep it in its perfections without any mixture of error. “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.” (Jas 2:10) Since that is true then it is painfully obvious that all men with the exception of JESUS CHRIST are active transgressors of the Holy Law, and worthy of death.
The Law manifests the wickedness of men, as Paul says, “What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead.” (Rom 7:7-8) Paul describes this “concupiscence“ thusly, “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Gal 5:19-21) This Law is against the very nature of man.
Yet Paul describes that work of the SPIRIT in the sons of GOD. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance” and then he says “against such there is no law.”(Gal 5:22-23) This is the freedom of the sons of GOD. We are not restricted nor is there any condemnation in that “law of the SPIRIT of LIFE in CHRIST JESUS.” This is an active principle (i.e. law) which is written in the conscience of the sons of GOD and they are made to rejoice in it and walk freely in that which has set them free from the law of sin and death. It is the work of the SPIRIT alone of which none can glory.mam