That They Might Know – 3 Nephi 1:7-8

7 And it came to pass that they did make a great uproar throughout the land; and the people who believed began to be very sorrowful, lest by any means those things which had been spoken might not come to pass.
8 But behold, they did watch steadfastly for that day and that night and that day which should be as one day as if there were no night, that they might know that their faith had not been vain.

In this passage, Mormon describes a group of people who believed in the words of the prophet Samuel. In the face of widespread criticism of their beliefs, they “began to be very sorrowful, lest by any means those things which had been spoken might not come to pass.” In other words, they believed, but they were aware of their own cognitive limitations. Did they also have doubts? Yes. They worried that the prophecies might not be fulfilled, and they worried that their faith was therefore in vain. But they didn’t allow these fears to change their behavior. Mormon tells us that they continued to watch “steadfastly” for the fulfillment of the prophecies, even in the face of this uncertainty.
“Faith is not to have a perfect knowledge of things,” Alma taught the Zoramites; “therefore, if ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true” (Alma 32:21). These people did not know for sure that the prophecies would be fulfilled, but they chose to continue to believe it, even when others expressed doubts. This uncertainty was a critical component of their faith. “If a man knoweth a thing, he hath no cause to believe it” (Alma 32:19). Or, as the Savior told Thomas, “Because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed” (John 20:29).
Today, I will choose to act even without being certain of the outcome. I will remain steadfast in my beliefs even when those beliefs are criticized and challenged. I will choose to have faith, and will look forward to the time when the uncertainty is replaced with certainty and the faith becomes knowledge.
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