Jonathan Edwards on Original Sin (Part 12)
Can 'free-will' reasonably account for the "general and great" "wickedness of the world"?
- "If their wills are in the first place as free to good as to evil, what is it to be ascribed to, that the world of mankind, consisting of so many millions, in so many successive generations, without consultation, all agree to exercise their freedom in favor of evil?"
- "If the cause be indifferent, why is not the effect in some measure indifferent?"
If the will is "free" in the sense that it is not corrupted by original sin-- if there is no inherent corruption of nature due to Adam's fall-- how is it that every person chooses to commit sin repeatedly?
How comes it to pass, that the free will of mankind has been determined to evil, in like manner before the flood and after the flood; under the law and under the gospel; among both Jews and Gentiles, under the Old Testament, and since then, among Christians, Jews, Mahometans; among papists and Protestants... and on every side of the globe; in greatest cities and obscurest villages; in palaces and in huts, wigwams, and cells under ground?
Labels: Reformation Theology