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AndrewR

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I know...
« on: March 22, 2016, 06:57:37 am »
This topic comes from reading Roper's thread about what God does, or doesn't, authorise. But I didn't want to take it down a side alley.

When I was a child testimony meetings had a lot more "I believe" in them, and a lot less "I know". Not that there weren't any, the phrase "know without a shadow of doubt" was heard at least each Fast Sunday.

But now people just say I know. But they don't. I don't know the Church is true, I have no certainty that the feelings I have are from God, and that I am truly (without a shadow of doubt, ie knowledge) in the true church, that JSj was a prophet, etc.

I have faith, a lot of it, and hope (maybe even more of that) that I am on the path of a real Plan of Salvation by my God.

What I do know is that I can not deny the existence of a creator. The world, solar system, and the galaxies and universe beyond, scream to me that there is a creator (or creators I guess). The perfection of eternity mixed with the imperfections of the temporal world just tell me He is there.

Everything from there is a path of logic, mingled with spiritual experiences. I can not conceive of a God who would create all this for the only purpose of making china dolls that can, if they believe, worship Him forever. That is just nonsensical. There just has to be more to life than that.

So the Plan of Salvation is logical, it makes sense that god embryos would need a place to stretch and grow in a place where mistakes could be erased, and learning increase.

So I believe. And I hope that one day I will Know (when the Saviour stands before me).
Don't ask me, I only live here.
Nauvoodle since March 2005 #1412
 
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Patty Rain

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Re: I know...
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2016, 03:38:12 pm »
I know God lives and He loves me.  I know he has guided me in some ways - to marry my husband for one. 

Other things - I feel like I know, but am not sure I actually know.  Not sure that makes sense. 

Then other things seem to go through the logical process like you mentioned.
Time for a change.  I am yungmom, but have wanted a new username for some time.
 
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LMAshton

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Re: I know...
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2016, 04:25:37 pm »
Patty, that makes perfect sense. It basically mirrors my thoughts. Some things I know, some things I think I know or at least mostly think I know, other things I believe, other things I hope for.
 
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Roper

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Re: I know...
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2016, 10:30:39 am »
I suppose it hinges on the definition of the word "knowledge."  If we use the common definition, i.e. understanding acquired through experience, and we add in the confirmation of the Holy Spirit, here are some things I know:

- I know that we have Heavenly parents and that we are the spirit children of those parents.  I have enough personal experience with God in my life and with that of my own family that I can never truthfully deny that.
- I know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that He ransomed me, and that He taught and prepared a way to return Home.  Again, I have enough personal experience with love, sacrifice, and discipleship that I can never deny that testimony.
- I know that the Holy Spirit testifies of Christ and speaks light and truth and solace to my soul.  Those experiences are part of who I am.

For pretty much everything else, I exercise faith in varying degrees.  I want to know.  For some things, I have life experience but no sure confirmation. For some things, I have learned a concept and I have hope, but I have little or no experience. For many things, I press forward because it seems like the right thing to do, and I hope that when my hands do the work, my heart will follow.  In other words, obedience will bring me life experience plus light and knowledge from the spirit, and then I will "know."  Those are the areas where I have the most doubt.  With some things, I've been plodding along for many years in the wilderness, with negative life experiences and no light. With every passing year, I question more and doubt more that those things are from God.
All grown-ups were once children...but only few of them remember it. ― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, "The Little Prince."
 

DerrellF

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Re: I know...
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2016, 04:23:42 pm »
What Roper said.
 
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Hobbes

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Re: I know...
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2016, 08:37:14 am »
When I went on my mission (a little over a decade ago... can that be right?) I remember a big deal being made of the phrase "I know" verus "I believe" (or "I think" or any, less powerful phrase).  I get it as a proselyting tool.  You use the best language: that which has the greatest power to pour conviction into the hearts of those whom you teach.  But I resented it, because it became apparent that a lot of people around me said "I know" when they meant "I think", and said "I can say, without a shadow of a doubt" when they really meant "I really hope it's true that".  And it robbed a lot of testimonies of their power for me, because now I didn't know if they knew, or if they had just memorized the language.  And I didn't always "know".

In fact, other than the comparative rhetorical power of the phrase, I don't know exactly how to quantify the difference between "I believe" and "I know".  Functionally, they seems about the same to me.  Heck, people claiming not to have any doubt makes it less likely they're right in my mind.  How many things have people known that turned out to be false?  Or, how many things have you and I known to be true that ended up being wrong?  When does something transition from belief to knowledge?  People act on what they believe all the time.

Maybe it's a response to the idea that "I believe" is a polite way to dull the sword of your testimony.  That you soften it when you're around other who don't share it, changing "know" to "believe" so they don't feel implicated by your faith.  I can appreciate that: certainly when it's fast and testimony meeting it's appropriate to let your faith shine.  But the pressure to wield that rhetorical sword seems misplaced, or at least over done.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2016, 01:42:07 pm by Hobbes »
 
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Scruffydog

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Re: I know...
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2016, 09:59:56 am »
It's something that has come up several times in conversations with people leaving the Church. One of the things that they complain about is people saying they know something that they can only believe.  I suppose in a strict sense that is true, because the point about apostles is that they really do know. However, I know things because of specific experiences I have had. I'm no apostle, and never will be, but there are some things that I know rather than believe because the belief is underpinned by an experience.  The problem is that I can never translate or transmit that experience into something real for anyone else; they would need to undergo their own experience to have that assurance.  Overall, it probably would make more sense to use believe rather than know, and I don't think that it undermines the testimony to say "I believe".
 
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Taalcon

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Re: I know...
« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2016, 10:36:57 am »
"I know" I had experience xyz. Partly because of that experience I know that I had, "I believe" , or interpret it to mean, that abc follows.
 

Scruffydog

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Re: I know...
« Reply #8 on: March 29, 2016, 10:42:24 am »
In my case, it was slightly more than that, but I accept your point in general.
 

 


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