A 28-year-old woman was caught speeding by state highway patrol. The woman told the officer that she was rushing to see her dying father in the hospital. The officer chose to let the woman go, but also decided to check the story out. He discovered that the father had died several years prior and that the woman was driving on a suspended drivers license. This same officer had the satisfaction of later going to the woman’s home and placing her under arrest.
This famous story from Genesis contains both lies and half-truths. It was true that Eve would not immediately die physically if she ate the forbidden fruit. However, the serpent purposely failed to add that Eve and anyone else who ate the fruit would die in another way.
When God warned Adam in Gen. 2:17 that whoever ate the forbidden fruit would die, He was referring to spiritual death. The story is the classic example of the danger of a half-truth.
A half-truth is essentially a statement containing a partial truth but told with the intent to deceive. Because half-truths contain that element of truth, they are exceptionally deceptive, especially for those who believe they know the truth.
Unfortunately, the enemy still uses half-truths to deceive us today. In fact, each of us could well have beliefs in half-truths that have not been adequately tested. For example, we are constantly lifted on a pedestal because we are physicians. It is true that the work we do in medicine holds a special place in society. But it is a lie to believe that we have more worth as a person because we engage in that work. Our value and worth are based solely upon who we are in Christ, not upon the work we do in the world.
What half-truths are you believing today? Be careful to test your beliefs with Scripture so that you don’t become the victim of a half-truth and partial lie.
Prayer: Lord, show me the half-truths that I have accepted without adequate testing so that I can withstand the attempts to deceive me.