(By Michael Youssef) In 2 Corinthians 11:3-4 (NIV), Paul laments: “But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the Spirit you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.”

When Paul says he fears the Corinthians will be seduced away from a “sincere and pure devotion to Christ,” the word “sincere” is not the best translation. The Greek word here is haplotēs, which literally means singleness and simplicity—a word that would describe a glass of clear water without any impurities or additives. It’s interesting that both the Old Testament prophets and the apostle Paul use the image of adultery to describe religion to which falsehood has been added. Similarly, we say that when a harmful substance is added to pure water, the water has been adulterated. To adulterate is to taint and contaminate. CONTINUE