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January 15 – LD 3, Day 1: Why Are We Totally Depraved?

The First Part - Of The Misery Of Man 

Lord’s Day 3

Question 6. Did God then create man so wicked and perverse?

Answer. By no means; but God created man good, [a] and after his own image, in [b] true righteousness and holiness, that he might rightly know God his Creator, heartily love him and live with him in eternal happiness to glorify and praise him. [c]

Question 7. Whence then proceeds this depravity of human nature?

Answer. From the fall and disobedience of our first parents, Adam and Eve, [d] in Paradise; hence our nature is become so corrupt, that we are all conceived and born in sin. [e]

Question 8. Are we then so corrupt that we are wholly incapable of doing any good, and inclined to all wickedness?

Answer. Indeed we are; [f] except that we are regenerated by the Spirit of God. [g]

[a]: Gen. 1:31
[b]: Gen. 1:26,27; Col. 3:10, Eph. 4:24
[c]: Eph. 1:6; 1Cor. 6:20
[d]: Gen 3:6; Rom. 5:12,18,19
[e]: Psa. 51:5; Gen. 5:3
[f]: Gen. 6:5; Job 14:4; Job 15:14,16
[g]: John 3:5; Eph. 2:5


Read: Genesis 1:1ff.

Our teacher has instructed us in the real reason why we are miserable and in need of comfort. He has instructed us to learn this by looking into the mirror of God’s law. Now that we have learned the true reason for our misery, we are ready to learn the next lesson

The next lesson is: How did we get that way? Were we always that way? The answer is: We got that way because our parents also are prone to hate God and their neighbor. But how did our parents get that way? Were they always that way?

And so we could trace our genealogies back as far as we want to go, but we will always find that the same thing is true: parents are always prone to hate God and their neighbor. And sin is passed on from parents to children.

But what if we would trace our genealogies back to the first parents that ever lived? Were they that way too? Well, to answer that question we have to know how they came to be parents when they did not have any parents of their own. The answer is: God created them.

But if it is true that God created them, did God create them so wicked that they are prone to hate God and their neighbor? And that is the question that comes from our teacher in this Lord’s Day. Is it God’s fault that we are this way? Did God make a serious error when, in creating man, he created a monster of sin instead?

It is not so strange that the HC asks this question, for when our first parents, Adam and Eve, were confronted by God and asked about their sin, they blamed God. Eve blamed the serpent God had made; and Adam blamed the woman God had given him. So both wanted to blame God.

The HC is emphatic. “By no means!” did God create man so wicked. He was created good, but he chose to be the way he is now. It is man’s fault.

By implication, the HC condemns our tendency always to blame someone else for our sins. Adam and Eve did this in Paradise; little children do this when confronted with a sin; we all do this. It seems ass if we are very skilled at figuring out who to blame for our sins, but always to escape our own responsibilities. It is a mortal disease. It keeps us from truly confessing our own sins.

Last modified on 13 January 2016

Additional Info

  • Date: 15-January
Hanko, Herman

Prof. Herman Hanko (Wife: Wilma)

Ordained: October 1955

Pastorates: Hope, Walker, MI - 1955; Doon, IA - 1963; Professor to the Protestant Reformed Seminary - 1965

Emeritus: 2001


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