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James 1:8

Jun 8, 2019   //   by Charlie Garrett   //   Daily Writing, Epistles, Epistles (written), James (epistles), James (written), Writings  //  11 Comments

Saturday, 8 June 2019

he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. James 1:8

In this verse, James describes the man who doubts when asking for wisdom. Such a person is “a double-minded man.” The word translated as double-minded is unique to James, being used here and in verse 4:8. It signifies someone who is undecided about things. He can’t make up his mind and thus cannot commit to anything, whether sound or not. In the Old Testament, the heart is used as a metaphor for the mind. Thus, the same type of thought is conveyed in Psalm 12 –

“They speak idly everyone with his neighbor;
With flattering lips and a double heart they speak.” Psalm 12:2

In the case of the one James is describing, it is not referring to one who is deceitful, just vacillating and unsure.

Further, James says he is “unstable in all his ways.” The word translated as “unstable” is another word unique to James, being found here and in verse 3:8. It signifies someone who is not constant in his attitudes and actions because he is double-minded. What this is speaking of is a person who is this way by nature, not necessarily in his prayers for wisdom. Such an attitude defines him. A person with this attitude will be this way in both his requests for wisdom and in his expectation concerning the approval of his requests. It is a pointless mindset which will result in no positive response from the Lord.

Here is why –

1) A person asks God for wisdom.
2) The very fact that one asks God for wisdom supposes that he believes in God.
3) If the One being petitioned is all-knowing, then the wisdom provided will be suitable to the request.
4) Therefore, the person who doubts such wisdom and continues to fret over the possible outcomes is double-minded.

In this scenario, the person is demonstrating a complete lack of faith in the Creator. The future is His responsibility. What is given for today is sufficient for today. It is for this reason that worry, in particular, is so damaging to a relationship with God. He asks us to trust that He is going to handle our lives in the appropriate way. The wisdom He gives us for today will be sufficient for the here and now, but if we doubt it then how can God find pleasure in us?

Life application: Trust isn’t easy to come by – particularly between humans. But trusting is what establishes relationships. God has given us His word and asks us to trust that it is sufficient. When we doubt the promises of the Bible, then there is a rift in our relationship with the One who gave it in the first place. Think it through and you will see that all things occur by His providence and for His purposes. We simply need to trust this is so.

Don’t be double-minded by calling on God and then doubting Him or by worrying about what belongs to Him. Instead, have faith that He is in control.

Lord God, you know our weaknesses when it comes to trusting You. You also know that we can’t see the future, which is yet unknown to us. Therefore, help us to direct our hearts, faith, and future to the care of Your hands – without doubt or worry – knowing that You have all things in Your control. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.


  • help us LORD to trust YOU fully with everything in our lives . thank you love and prayers


  • Just caught up on our study today after 3 long days of sitting with a dying sister in law who was given diagnosis that kidneys had shut down and heart unable to sustain her. She passed yesterday morning, when you meet her in heaven you will find her to be a faithful follower of Christ our Savior. Praise God that she is stress free today!

    • I’m so sorry to read t his John. God bless you and keep you. Thank God for Jesus who has made all things new. Praise God for Him!

  • So very true! Worry is a tool of Satan to distract and negatively impact our lives, Something I have first hand knowledge of on a large scale. Thank God I got turned around and realized everything happens for a reason and God is in control not Satan, just the simple act of counting my blessings everyday drove the fear of worry away and replaced it with trust. Not saying I am worry free all the time, Worry is one of the deceptions we have to deal with daily while we are in this world of sin but we can minimize its affect on us by trusting in the lord as he wants us to.
    My current worry as you know is my daughters kidney issue. She is now having problem with very bad dizziness and has been to the ER twice because it was so bad. We are waiting for the results of an MRI so I think this could qualify as justified worry??? But worry that is tempered with trust in The lord for positive results. Any way thank you all for your prayers for my daughter and i ask You to keep them coming as she goes through the testing procedures.

    We ARE another day closer to home
    Grace mercy and peace on you and yours
    God bless my friends we fly soon

    • Oh boy. I am sorry to read this now after John’s post. I wish it was not still on-going. Please, please keep us posted, and I shall be in prayer along with the others here.

  • John I just saw your post after I made my post. Very sorry for your loss but over joyed that she had Jesus in her life and is now In His presence waiting for us to join her. I can’t wait to be there with her Amen

    God bless my friend

    • Thanks Gordon, you are always encouraging, praying for your daughter’s healing. God answers prayer, amen

  • Praying for her loved ones, John and praising God she is safely at Home, and believing God is blessing all the procedures for your daughter, Gordon trusting in Him taking good care of you all through this time.
    Thank you Charlie for teaching us the Word especially with this very important message for all of us to stand firm, in love, believe, trust and obey Him especially in these trying days during our walk in life with our Lord, the Son of God. Believe, trust, obey in our loving Savior, Jesus Christ….”without doubt or worry – knowing that You have all things in Your control. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.”

    • Thank you Mary, you are a dear sister, love your posts

  • Bless each of you <3

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