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Chapter 13

The woe of human nature

 

Sometimes when I am looking at my Bible and reading about man' s real state in this world as God sees him, I wonder how every ordinary man and woman cannot see their hopeless position and turn to Jesus, who alone can complete them. The hopelessness of man is so obvious, if you judge it by his terrible behaviour. The Bible lists many of these things! Immorality, impurity, selfishness, rebellion, hatred, jealousy, dissensions, envy, drunkenness and the like. They are just so obvious in this world of ours!

Personal experience.

But it is then that I remember how I was just 10 years ago. Many of those adjectives fitted me. Did I realise it? Certainly not! Why not? The Bible tells me the answer. I was blind to my actual state! Virtually dead spiritually! No awareness of anything too much at all, except my soulish and bodily needs. I had some awareness of when I wasn't too nice to people, but I was practically helpless to do anything about it. I didn't even know for sure there was another way! Even the will can be limited in its usefulness, particularly if the person is effected by demons.

Why can't man help himself?

The Bible now tells me that people perish through lack of God's knowledge. I very nearly did! It was a lack of knowledge about Jesus Christ and what he has achieved for every human being who wants to take up his offer of life. But the answer to the woe of human nature is the subject of other chapters. See Chapters 15, 19 and 25. But why is it that man is in that state, where, in his own strength, he is just so unable to help himself? It is worth pausing to see the origin of that state.

The answer to this and other questions are found in various parts of the Bible. The first part of the explanation is this. Man, if he is at all aware of his environment, has seen God's invisible qualities since the creation of the world, particularly his eternal power and divine natrue, this being primarily in evidence in the form of God's earthly provisions for man.

But man has not continually thanked God for these things, and as a result mans's heart has become darkened, hardened and has also lacked wisdom. As a consequence, man developed other forms of Gods and thanked them for what the real God had given them. God has permitted them to carry our their sinful desires. As their sin compounded and their knowledge of God lessened, they became filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. And as a whole, so the world is today, despite the beauty of creation and man's good intentions.

The origin of man's nature

But what made man like that? after all, the Bible tells us that man was made in the image of God. God never became foolish and sinful, so why did man? To find out we must go back to the garden of Eden for the second part of the explanation. the reasons given in Chapter 16 are in the context of world history, because the events there forever changed God's relationship to man on earth.

You will recall that man had been created in the image of God, which meant that the fullness of God's Spirit was an inherent part of man, to add to his human spirit, soul and body. the human spirit, soul and body of man was the place of residence of God's Spirit, which was the mans by which God communicated with, and gave life to man.

Because of the sinful behaviour of the first Eve and then Adam, they lost the fullness of the Holy Spirit of God, and they no longer were able to commune with God in the way they had before. Moreover, as they did not have this fullness of the Spirit of God, they could no longer expect to live forever. They had lost their right to eternal life.

Man's plight since that time.

What is important to realise, is that ever since that time, every person ( except Jesus Christ ) has been born with a sinful nature, because without the spirit of God dwelling in us, we are left with just our own human-ness, which the bible says is corrupt. Man cannot be good forever without the spirit of God in him. He eventually fails, partly because he thinks he can do without God, and partly because his natural state can never sustain him.

Man cannot do without God, for if he tries to for very long, he becomes independent, powerful, proud and eventually fails. World history is full of people with that pattern of behaviour. Although this may be a new idea to you, you can be assured it is a vital fact to accept before you will be able to understand the reasons why God eventually sent Jesus.

Jesus makes the difference.

Sending Jesus to earth was the only way God could make up for the sins of mankind. The death of Jesus became full payment for all the sins of mankind, those sins past, present and future. By his death, Jesus defeated sin and death forever. See Chapter 16 for an explanation of this. Those who now choose to believe in him, can receive from him the fullness of his holy spirit as a free gift, enabling them to have the benefit of his Holy Spirit here on earth, as well as the gift of eternal life.

So Jesus is the good news concerning the woe of man's human nature. No longer does man have to overcome his natural natured that makes him sinful and depraved) without the help of the Spirit of God. By becoming a member of the family of God, every person can enjoy the fruits of His Spirit, which are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. These are available to any person through the power of God given through his spirit.

Personal experience.

I have seen my own life change dramatically in the last ]0 years. Health, family, job and money, which were all seriously effected, have all been restored in some form, despite the serious wrong-doings of my past.

The bible promises restoration after repentance and forgiveness. Jesus said that if we seek the kingdom of God first, before all other things, then all other things will be restored to us. l can testify to the truth of that scripture and to his forgiveness for my sin. However, it's better not to get it wrong in the first place, because many people can be hurt along the way. The relevance of sin and forgiveness is discussed in Chapter 17.

These are profound truths. Fully understanding them and having the benefits of them, are all available through repentance, believing in Jesus being baptised in water and receiving his spirit. How to do that is explained in Chapter 25. You are encouraged to seek these things for yourself.

What this Chapter has said.

  1. Modern man is considerably out of touch from the reality of his corrupt human nature.
  2. Man, without God, cannot help himself very much at all.
  3. Man has had a corrupt human nature for almost all of the history of the world.
  4. The coming of Jesus can make a difference to the life of every person who chooses to believe in Him.