“I don’t have nobody to blame but myself.”
“Double negatives” are so confusing! There are also points in Scripture that are sometimes hard to grasp—that seem almost too good to be true.
For example, some people think that the mercy of the Lord is applied only at the point of our initial salvation. Paul taught, “By grace are you saved,” but folks sometimes think that when God fills us with His Holy Spirit, that is where the “grace period” ends. After that moment, we are on our own to “straighten up and fly right.” Or else.
But the word of God tells us … again and again … that the mercy of the Lord is “from everlasting to everlasting.” The Scriptures remind us no less than 41 times that “His mercy endures forever.” When we come to God with a repentant heart, our negatives—no matter how many—are no match for His inexhaustible mercy. It is from “everlasting to everlasting” … and there is no sin that is beyond His “everlasting!”
“I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD.” (Psalm 116:13 KJV)
Drinking from the “cup of salvation” is not a one-time sip. We should never think, “Once it’s done, it’s done.” No—the “cup” of salvation is an ever-flowing spring, from which we continually draw to wash away our sins every single day. Though God’s mercy and grace are infinite, our innocence is not. To develop a heart after God’s own heart takes a lifetime of attitude adjustments and course corrections. Repentance is not an event—it is a daily process. But every time we come humbly to God with an empty cup, we can rest assured that He will fill it again with His inexhaustible supply of forgiveness and grace.
“The LORD JEHOVAH … is become my salvation. Therefore, with joy shall ye draw water (continually!) out of the wells of salvation.” (Isaiah 12:2 KJV)
Another double negative in Scripture is “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” (Luke 1:37 KJV)
This verse is sometimes interpreted as meaning that there is not a thing that GOD cannot do. But we know that’s not true: for God cannot lie (Hebrews 6:18); God cannot change (Malachi 3:6); God cannot break a promise (Psalm 89:34); God cannot cease being who He is (Psalm 90:2), among many other things. So, what DOES this Scripture mean? If we unravel the double negative, we read that for God to do NOTHING—to NOT respond to our prayer—to NOT care when we are in trouble … THAT is impossible!
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble…The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah.” (Psalm 47:1 & 7)
Remember, God said, “There is no way at all that I will ever leave you; There is not even a chance that I will ever abandon you.” (Hebrews 13:5 paraphrased) So, the next time we face a difficulty, and we question whether God has abandoned us, remember this Scripture. He has promised, and promised … and promised yet again by way of five negatives that there is absolutely no way that he will ever walk out on us. Others might, but God will not. He is ever faithful. He has never, and will never, forsake us. It’s not who He IS.
Prayer: LORD, help me rest in Your promises. If I believe and obey Your Word, I will never feel forsaken or unforgiven. For Your everlasting faithfulness, I will praise you forever!