Common Grace

“Are there not occasions when unbelievers show acts of kindness and self-sacrifice? Imagine, for a moment, writing a letter to one of the national newspapers in which you say, “Non-Christians have never done anything good.” It would not be difficult to imagine the opprobrium that would result from such a statement. What, then, do Paul and the Westminster Confession mean when they collectively assert such a position? The answer requires some finesse. Calvin, for example, taught that fallen human beings still have the capacity for what he called “civic virtue”-keeping laws and conventions of society, and interacting with others in a way that is not vicious or evil.’ In these relationships, human beings are capable of acts that are good, compassionate, laudable, and virtuous. Indeed, non-Christians Christians often prove kinder than Christians in acts of mercy and compassion.” -Derek Thomas

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