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Difference Between Knowing and Believing

truth-knowledgeKnowing vs Believing

Knowing and believing are different words that are often used in religious teachings across the world. ‘Knowing’ means that you possess knowledge, are shrewd, suggestive or deliberate. On the other hand, ‘believing’ means that you have accepted something to be true, or you are confident and have trust in something. For example: you believe that you are beautiful, but people know that you are not.

There has to be clarification between what you believe and what you know. When you say ‘I believe’, you indicate that you don’t know about this thing, because, in your personal experience, it has not yet occurred . For example, you believe that you will go to heaven if you don’t smoke or take alcohol, or you believe that if you are honest with your spouse, you are being loyal to your relationship. Beliefs are based on your words, or a particular train of thought. You apply these beliefs to your life because they are appealing. As a result, you feel and begin to believe that they are true.

However, do you have any assurance that what you just believed in, is true? You will never come back from heaven, and say that you went there because you didn’t smoke. There are numerous gurus who want you to follow them blindly, without letting you know whether their teachings are the truth or not. You should never simply believe and accept their words. You should delve deeper into the meaning, and know what they are speaking.

An element of doubt should be put in between ‘believing’ and ‘knowing’, but doubt with shrewdness or intelligence. Even if you know useful information, it should be tested, so that it turns into knowledge, and is then converted into a belief.

If you are a believer, then you are gullible, and you can fall into the trap of many scams. For a believer, if something sounds good, he or she will believe it instantaneously. So, it is extremely important that you feed your mind with the right information.

Knowing about something reduces your fears. For example, your friend might know that the person walking behind you is Joe, and that he resides next door. Unless you know that this person is Joe, you will remain fearful of him. As a human, you will feel comforted in ‘knowing’ things. So if you know, then you are certain.

‘Believing’, on the other hand, is very different, and you can choose in what you want to believe. For example, do you believe in God?

We create this world with our knowledge and beliefs. So better be careful in what you believe.


1. ‘Believing’ means that you have chosen a truth, but ‘knowing’ means that you are certain about that truth.

2. ‘Believing’ always leaves room for doubt, but ‘knowing’ leads to confidence.

3. ‘Believing’ is blind trust, while ‘knowing’ is trusting with awareness.

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  1. The graphical representation is completly bogus, whithin truth and logic only is there knowledge. Belief has nothing to do with knowledge. In fact belief is just that, self explained knowlede WITHOUT TRUTH in the name of what is “BELIEVED”

  2. Just FYI! You don’t go to heaven based of what you do or don’t do. You inherit eternal life merely from your faith in Jesus Christ and accepting Him as your Lord and Savior. For those of you who don’t believe I want to let you know that Jesus loves you so much despite of what you do and don’t do. He wants you to have a better life which is only found in Him.

    • Good opinions all around but I feel you missed the point being made with the reference to God used here. No one was implicating that there is anything wrong with the belief in God or that is some kind of fallacy or fugazi. It was just an example to convey the difference between knowing something and believing something based on what the meaning of each word is and also to show that problems can arise with either of the 2 if too much conviction is used. As to the acceptance part of your lashing statement…if I’m not mistaken the character of Jesus according to the text taught and demonstrated how to think, act, react, and treat others if one was to ascend and transcend to higher states. One way was through forgiveness. I think it wouldn’t hurt to cultivate that virtue a bit. No need for the “FY” that you lead with here. And if I may be so bold… Possibly apologize and reflect a bit in humility for the misinterpretation and harsh response given. After all “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” or better ” All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them”. To conclude… This forum is for educational purposes, not for debates on religion. I digress

    • Salvation is free however we also have to repent to make it to heaven. Repentance is a process because it is not only asking for forgiveness it is also a turning away from those sins. Paul said he dies to the flesh daily. He also said to die is gain. We die daily by praying without ceasing, being obedient and submitting to the will of God and being a servent of God (ministry).

  3. I may have misread that a bit with the FYI part. My apologies to whom it may concern. Having said that… The rest is still my position.

  4. Okay I understand this but not fully because it still leave a question in me, especially in knowing what if what you know is a lie and you gain confidence in a lie. Will you still be confident trully?

    • It would seem to me that you would believe the lie and gain confidence in it because you do not “know”the truth. Let’s say… used car dealer says “this car typically lasts to 500,000 miles, it has been inspected for problems and has passed with flying colors!” You buy it, believing that all is true. So you drive if off the lot, make it halfway home, and it explodes. Rewind 20 minutes earlier, salesman gives you the exact same pitch and you demand the reports which tell you that the car has been in multiple wrecks, repaired by questionable backyard mechanics and definitely questionable mechanics, and that the mechanic found loose wires on the fuel pump inside the gas tank… at first you believed the car to be sound and would live a longer life. But after receiving the reports you know that it will explode at any minute.

  5. It is sad the damage of the fall and what it as done to the human race. Before this man was God conscious and have no need to doubt but due to the fall he became self aware and how doubt everything even God who created him is doubt, God declares himself to be truth and so the need to doubt is not necessary, Hebrew 11:6, without faith it is impossible to please Him, if you don’t believe that a choice made, this is the power given to us to believe or not, but it does not change the truth nor the responsibility we have to our creator,you can only know the truth in a relationship with Jesus Christ, this goes beyond the activities of the mind to the spirit that was made to interact with God, the mind require proof but for fallen man base on what, he doesn’t understand the world he live in can’t explain it where does his proof come from, I believe God, so I know and believe, it not bogus as some may suggest.

  6. How can you really believe something without KNOWING it to be true? For instance, I know many things in the Bible concerning the best way to live your life are true. But I can’t BELIEVE or just take on faith most of the facts that are proposed, solely on the fact that the Bible itself claims to be inspired by the word of God. By the very small knowledge I have, I truly believe in God. But I cannot believe in the Bible as a whole no matter how much I try and want to.

  7. Has helped,know first then after knowing,I can now believe.(you shall know the truth,of which you believe then you are set free.)

    • “whithin truth and logic only is there knowledge. Belief has nothing to do with knowledge.”

      Actually, in epistemology, there is only ”belief”; knowledge is traditionally defined as “justified true belief”. So knowledge IS belief, but with greater certainty. Take the following examples:

      It will rain.
      I believe it will rain.
      I know it will rain.

      We generally understand these as the same assertion, simply made with varying levels of certainty (or what epistemologists call “credence”). When I say, “I know it will rain,” what I actually mean is something like, “I believe very strongly that it will rain.”

      Conversely, it is simply not possible to “know” something without also believing it. It would be very odd for someone to say, “I know I’m sitting in this chair but I don’t believe I’m sitting in this chair.”

      Similarly, when we preface a proposition P with a phrase like, “I believe, but I don’t know, that P”, we are not generally making a distinction between knowledge and some belief, but expressing a low level of certainty about something we believe to be true.

  8. :)) the program of “believing” was needed to make human beings zombies. I don’t believe in God, I know God. Believing needs thought process. Knowing is something beyond thought, knowing involves all the body senses. You know something only when that something is in your experience, everything else admit that you don’t know, simple as that.

  9. In the Bible the book of John 17:1-3 NIV. Jesus say in vs 2 For you granted him ( Jesus Christ) authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. I don’t believe that all people will inherit eternal life buy just saying I believe. In James 2:19 NIV says; You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that— and Shudder. Jesus says in vs 3 Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. If any person wants to have eternal life they need to know God and Jesus. The difference between “Believing and Knowing is this.1. “Believing means that you have chosen a truth, but “Knowing means that you are certain about that truth. 2. Believing always leaves room for doubt, but Knowing leads to confidence. 3. Believing is blind trust, while knowing is is trusting with awareness.

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