When placed under oath a witness swears to, “Tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.”

The middle phrase is a problem if someone wants to minimize what they’ve done. Most of us are okay admitting we did something wrong, as long as we can withhold the details. It’s one thing to say, “I blew it last night.” It’s another thing to say, “I binged and ate a gallon of ice cream,” or, “I watched porn for three hours straight.”

I used to think a partial confession was okay. I mean, why make myself look bad? Or, why make a friend uncomfortable by asking for the details? Right?

Why Tell the Whole Truth?

The more I help people break strongholds, the more I’m convinced partial confessions aren’t confessions at all. And I don’t think I’m doing anyone a favor by letting them off the hook by not pressing for the whole truth. That doesn’t mean we should expect every lurid detail. But looking back, I see that most of my confessions exposed the tip of the iceberg while leaving the worst part hidden under the water-line. Partial confessions are a cover up of what we’re most ashamed of. And unless we bring that into the light, the stronghold stands strong.

We Need God’s Power

Telling the whole truth requires the power of God to overcome sin’s resistance to enter the light. And not just sin, but demonic spirits. Both live in strongholds and demand we keep shameful secrets in the dark.

I’ve concluded : The greater the resistance to fully confess a sin, the greater the need to confess it.

Think about it, if something within you is pleading to keep sin concealed, it means your either living in shame or enslavement. Both are a form of bondage. And that bondage will expand its control until the shameful secret, or sin you’ve committed, is exposed. Jesus taught this when he said, “There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known” (Matthew 10:26). It’s just a matter of how and when. You can confess it now–and reduce the consequences. Or, God will expose it later.

The Benefits of a Full Confession

The Apostle John spoke of the benefit of confession. And I suspect he meant a confession that tells the whole truth. He said, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

If it’s purity you’re seeking, then tell the whole truth when you confess. And remember the promise of Jesus,

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”

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