Why I Don’t Say 'I Know' in My Testimony Anymore

Every month, thousands of Latter-day Saints walk nervously to the pulpits of their churches, their palms sweating as they stumble through an introductory comment about why they felt the need to stand up and talk to their fellow ward members. After establishing their reasons for putting themselves in such a spotlight, they usually proceed to say things along the lines of, “I know the Church is true”, “I know X, Y, and Z”, and the much-loved classics, “I know without a shadow of a doubt/with every fiber of my being…”

These phrases, while faith-inspiring to some, have started to make me feel a little uncomfortable. Not because they don’t seem sincere—I too have stood at the pulpit and made bold claims about my “rock-solid knowledge” of the divine. But I think there’s an inconsistency between what we say in testimony meeting, and what we teach in Sunday School just minutes later.

In Alma 32 we read that,

"Faith is not to have a perfect knowledge of things; therefore if ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true.”

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