From Foundations of the Christian Faith by James Montgomery Boice AFTER HAVING DESCRIBED THE NATURE OF SIN AND ITS RADICAL AND PERVASIVE effects upon the race, it is still necessary to discuss the bondage of the will. At that point the sharpest disagreements come and the results of sin are most clearly exposed. Luther recognized the importance of the issue. At the end of his monumental defense of the will's bondage, after demolishing the arguments of the humanist Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam, Luther turned to Erasmus and complimented his writings for at least focusing on the crucial issue. Luther wrote, "I give you hearty praise and commendation on this further accountthat you alone, in contrast with all others, have attacked the real thing, that is, the essential issue."' Similarly, Emil Brunner speaks of the understanding of freedom and "unfreedom" as "the decisive point" for understanding man and man's sin.2 How far did man fall when he sinned? Did he merely stumble? Did he fall part way, but nevertheless not so far as to render himself hopeless? Or did he fall totally, so far that he cannot even will to seek God or obey him? What does the Bible mean when it says that we are "dead in trespasses and sins"? Does it mean that we really are dead so far as any ability to respond to God or to choose God is concerned? Or do we still have the ability at least to respond to ...