We continue our look at the Heidelberg Disputation by looking at Thesis 2.
Much less can human works which are done over and over again with the aid of natural precepts, so to speak, lead to that end.
Since the law of God, which is holy and unstained, true, just, etc. is given man by God as an aid beyond his natural powers to enlighten him and move him to do the good, and nevertheless the opposite takes place, namely, that he becomes more wicked, how can he, left to his own power and without such aid, be induced to do good? If a person does not do good with help from without, he will do even less by his own strength. Therefore the Apostle, in Rom. 3[:10-12], calls all persons corrupt and impotent who neither understand nor seek God, for all, he says, have gone astray.
Thesis 2 expands on Thesis 1. If the law (God’s law) cannot bring about salvation, neither can human works. It is impossible to be saved without grace and there is nothing we can do to prepare for God’s grace.