Who is the double-minded man?

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The double-minded man

The apostle James labeled the man that doubts as “a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways” (James 1:8). A person who is double-minded is torn between the call of worldly pleasures and the call of God. While the instability mentioned in James 1:6 refers specifically to the matter of prayer, the apostle takes this occasion to emphasize the fact that such a man is also unstable in other situations of his life (Matthew 15:8). All his ways, deeds, and thoughts show his dual motives in life, and his religious life will not be right either to himself or to God.

In the Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan distinguished this kind of person as Mr. Facing-both-ways. The “double-minded” man has two “souls,” or two loyalties. He stops between belief and unbelief, whereas the man with singleness of purpose does not waver (Matthew 6:22).

Confusion in the mind and trouble in all the facets of life are the normal result of a wavering faith in God. Believers need wisdom to see the way to live from day to day, for to sway between faith in man and faith in God is foolishness. To have a one aim is necessary to the spiritual growth and happiness. “For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints (1 Corinthians 14:33).

No man can serve two masters

Jesus spoke about being double-minded when He said, “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon” (Matthew 6:24 also Luke 16:13). It is impossible to serve both God and money because their demands are at odds. A person can’t focus the eye on two things or think of two different thoughts at the same time. The Christian faith must be the chief goal in life and must control all other facets, bringing the life in line with its principles.

There is no neutral ground. He who is not fully with God is effectively on Satan’s side. Darkness and light cannot fill the same place at the same time. Those who serve money are its slaves, and do its command in spite of themselves. Paul exhorted the believers, “Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?” (Romans 6:16 also John 8:34).

God’s eternal reward for the faithful

For those that focus their minds on God, He promised, “Because he has focused his love on me, I will deliver him. I will protect him because he knows my name. When he calls out to me, I will answer him. I will be with him in his distress. I will deliver him, and I will honor him” (Psalm 91:14-15). True religion blesses a man in this life and in the life to come (1 Timothy 4:8). In view of the eternal glories that God promises, how can a person place his attention on that which doesn’t last? The Lord urged His children, “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness” and then He assured them “and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33).

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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