When a child learns that 2+2=4, he has gained knowledge as agreed to by humanity in general. In order for this knowledge to be useful to the child, and humanity, it is necessary that they BELIEVE this is true.
They could just as easily believe 2+2=7.
That would also be considered knowledge if generally accepted.
For it to be accepted as knowledge, their must be consensual belief that it is so.
So, the first conclusion we can reach is: knowledge,
whether true or false,
is the result of BELIEVING it to be true.
The obvious second conclusion is that what one accepts as knowledge
is not the same as TRUTH or ACTUALITY.
Humans once believed the earth is flat.
That was the knowledge they held.
That knowledge has been proven false and been replaced by a BELIEF that the earth is more or less spherical in shape.
In theological terms, the agnostic BELIEVES he does not know whether or not God exists. His belief has no bearing on truth, actuality, or accepted knowledge. God either does or does not exist regardless what the agnostic holds to be true knowledge.
The atheist though is certain.
He KNOWS God does not exist because he believes it and therefore he knows it is so. Like the agnostic's position, his position has no bearing whatsoever on truth or actuality. God either does or does not exist regardless of what the atheist holds to be true knowledge.
The deist believes God exists and therefore he KNOWS there is a Supreme Deity. His belief has no bearing on whether or not God exists. God either does or does not exist regardless of what the deist holds to be true knowledge.
It is just as easy to believe a falsehood as it is to believe the truth. It often is more difficult to believe the truth than the false. The primary example occurred in the Garden of Eden when Eve believed the serpent.
The challenge to humans is to gain the knowledge of what is true and therefore what to believe. This no simple matter.
Every jury confronts this challenge.
Is a witness truthful, distorting the truth, or lying ?
The serpent distorted the truth. He told part truth, "You will be like God knowing good and evil" and part untruth, "You will not surely die."
Modern political statisticians and pollsters distort truth by framing questions in such a way to elicit responses in the desired, agenda driven direction. Parents tell children that Santa Claus is a real person who brings gifts.
Police tells lies to suspects, "Your cohort has confessed and said you pulled the trigger", to entrap a suspect into confession.
In our fallen world we are surround by untruths and half truths.
Members of academia, journalism, and the scientific community have again and again been found to have lied about things to further some objective they deemed laudable or that would bring them personal gain. The same is true of all manner of thieves, politicians, auto mechanics, salespeople, lawyers, policemen, and people from every walk of life.
In the history of the world, only one person has been documented as always saying what is actually true. His name was Yeshua BarYusef, better known to us as Jesus son of Joseph, or of Nazareth, and ultimately as Jesus The Christ.
The importance of knowing is suggested by the use of the word, and its related forms, hundreds of times in Holy Writ, meaning the Judeo-Christian Bible. The chart shown below illustrates this.
If you will harken back to the beginning of this monologue, you can see that knowledge cannot possibly be possessed without faith. To KNOW that God IS requires that the proposition be believed. Once you believe, not only will you know, you will be confirmed in your knowledge.
Once you are in possession of this certain knowledge of the TRUTH, you will receive opportunities to further your knowledge under the guidance of God through the Holy Spirit, PROVIDED you also believe and confess that Jesus Christ was and is the Son of the Living God. When you believe this, God will confirm it to you.
Without Jesus and the Spirit, you can know OF God by virtue of the Witness of creation. But to KNOW GOD requires entry into a fellowship with Him through the narrow gate, which is His Son The Christ, the Anointed, Kristos, Messiah.
Jesus, when on earth, taught the existence of a wide or broad way, and a narrow way which leads to God the Father. The broad way (Broadway) is filled with sensual delights; bright lights and sounds. These stimuli overcome the natural person causing him to be blind to the true light, and deaf to the word. There is a narrow path through it all.
That narrow path is the one Jesus trod on earth on His way back to the Father. He invites us to make our own version of the same journey with the same ending ... eternal life with Him and the Father.
He gave simple and explicit directions.
He said, "Follow me."
You can learn what this means by studying the four Gospels and being in the company of people who are walking the narrow path. If you ask God, in all humility and openness, He will reveal the truth to you. Only then can you know what to believe and what true knowledge is.
Sagaverus, April 2011
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