‘Limited Negatives’ as Conversation Starters
Obvious Examples (to prove the literary device exists)
For it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
Whoever believes in me does not believe in me
only, but in the one who sent me.
Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life.
1 John 3:18
Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.
Obvious Counter-Examples (to provoke caution)
Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath.
3 John 1:11
Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good.
Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.
Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.
12 Potential ‘Limited Negative’ Passages for our Consideration
But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven.
Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword
I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more.
When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or sisters, your relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind.
Children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
Stop judging by
mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.”
I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
1 Peter 3:3-4
Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self