In January 2014, Bible teacher Steve Gregg delivered a series of nine lectures that thoroughly cover the differences between the Calvinist and non-Calvinist positions. This is the first part of the fourth lecture, "Challenges to Total Depravity."
Total Depravity and Inability
Calvinist view: Man is too corrupt to even respond to God's overtures and to repent or believe
And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
John 6:44, 65
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him....Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.
Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
I Corinthians 2:14
But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins
This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
Non-Calvinist view: Repentance and faith are an option for any man, upon God's prior urging, to choose
I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live
And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell
For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD
Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good. For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings.
For thus saith the LORD unto the eunuchs that keep my sabbaths, and choose the things that please me, and take hold of my covenant; Even unto them will I give in mine house and within my walls a place and a name better than of sons and of daughters: I will give them an everlasting name, that shall not be cut off.
Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent
For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse; Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.