Is mankind essentially good but make mistakes or are they totally depraved of any goodness because of their sin? This is a theological question that many of us wrestle with on a daily basis even if we don’t always acknowledge it. The answer to this question impacts the way we interact with the world and view the people around us. If you say things like “I can’t believe they would do such a thing, or how could they be so cruel?” you might be coming from a stand point that not all men have the capacity to sin at such evil levels. However, if you think things like, “it is a blessing that I never struggled with that issue or it is a miracle that more bad things don’t happen,” then you are probably looking at things with a total depravity world view.
The story of Sodom and Gomorra is an example of what happens when men get further away from God and are given freedom to indulge their sinful passions. Every aspect of God’s design has been forsaken by the people of Sodom and Gomorra to the extent that God destroys it with fire. How bad does it have to get for God to wipe out the whole town? This is not the only time in scripture that we see an example of mankind progressively becoming more perverted and wicked. Actually, every time a society is given freedom to act on their own understanding and devices this happens. You have already read about the flood in Genesis 5-10, At the end of Judges we see the same thing (Judges 19-21) and Paul refers to this in Roman (Romans 1:18-32). We are all totally depraved because of our sin. In Ephesians 2:1-3 Paul is clear when he states:
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.
The very thing that saved Lot is the very thing that will save us, a relationship with a righteous man. Lot was part of Abraham’s family so God spared him. He was not good which is easy to see at the end of our chapter. For us it is only by knowing Jesus and being a part of his family that saves us and redeems us.
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
By: Chad Wiles