DELIVERANCE FROM DOUBLE MINDEDNESS
Becoming Stable in an Unstable World
A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. (James 1:8)
Young’s Literal Translation
a two-souled man is unstable in all his ways
The Greek phrase for double-minded literally means “double-souled.” A person in this condition is always wavering, irresolute, doubting, changing, and inconsistent. God did not create us to be unstable people. He created us in his image. God is not unstable. God is the same today, yesterday, and forever. God is dependable and consistent. He wants us to be the same. Unfortunately most of us are not fully stable, but thank God for his mercy and delivering power.
Synonyms for double-mindedness include indecisive, hesitating; vacillating; wavering. Hesitate – procrastinate; question; waver; tarry; vacillate; put off; doubt; linger; delay; defer; brood over; deter; be doubtful; waffle; pause. The double-minded man has problems making decisions and sticking with them. He is also changing his mind concerning relationships, career, ministries, and churches due to instability.
Inconsistent means displaying or marked by a lack of consistency, especially: Not regular or predictable; erratic.
Unstable means tending strongly to change, not constant; fluctuating: unstable vital signs, fickle. Lacking control of one’s emotions; marked by unpredictable behavior.
Not firmly placed; unsteady.
Perhaps we can understand this even better by defining stable. Stable means not likely to change or fail; firmly established, not easily moved or disturbed, not easily moved or thrown off balance; firm; steady; not likely to break down, fall apart, or give way, not volatile, or varying infrequently within a narrow range, not subject to mental illness or irrationality, fixed; firmly established; not to be easily moved. How many can say that they fit this description in their personality and makeup?
Barnes’ Notes on the Bible
A double minded man – The word here used, δίψυχος dipsuchos occurs only here and in James 4:8. It means, properly, one who has two souls; then one who is wavering or inconstant. It is applicable to a man who has no settled principles; who is controlled by passion; who is influenced by popular feeling; who is now inclined to one opinion or course of conduct, and now to another.
Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible
A double minded man,…. A man of two souls, or of a double heart, that speaks and asks with an heart, and an heart, as in Psalm 12:2 who halts between two opinions, and is at an uncertainty what to do or say, and is undetermined what to ask for; or who is not sincere and upright in his requests, who asks for one thing, and means another, and asks amiss, and with an ill design; does not call upon God in truth, and in the sincerity of his soul; draws nigh to him with his mouth, and honours him with his lips, but his heart is far from him. Such an one is unstable in all his ways; he is confused in his mind; restless in his thoughts, unsettled in his designs and intentions; inconstant in his petitions; uncertain in his notions and opinion of things; and very variable in his actions, and especially in matters of religion; he is always changing, and never at a point, but at a continual uncertainty, both in a way of thinking and doing: he never continues long either in an opinion, or in a practice, but is ever shifting and moving.