But the Scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe (Galatians 3:22).
The Scriptural doctrine of total depravity does not mean that an individual can do nothing good or moral (at least from mans perspective). Even an unsaved person can be honest, devoted to his family, working for decency in his community, and performing all sorts of humanitarian deeds. But the Bible says that in Gods eyes, we are totally under sin, and there is nothing an individual can do to alter this tragic situation. Perhaps comparing the terms bad versus bad off helps put it in focus. To be sure, much of what mankind practices is hideously wicked, and even our good deeds are as filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6) in Gods estimation. Evolutionary humanists may tell us we are getting better, but the Creator tells us we are desperately evil, with no hope outside His plan.
There are several aspects of our sin in Gods word. First, there is personal sin: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). No one can argue that he does not practice sin.
Next, we all desire sin. This internal nature plagued even the godly men of Scripture (Romans 7:25). The fruits of this nature are sin and death, with an apt description of the attendant evils listed in Galatians 5:1921, and elsewhere.
Finally, we have inherited sin through Adam: Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned (Romans 5:12). The natural man is spiritually dead, and physically dying, without Christ. By grace are ye saved through faith in the substitutionary nature of His payment for sin, not of works, for we are incapable in our natural state of good works (Ephesians 2:8,9). JDM