How can we honor and sustain the law if our government makes unrighteous choices?
    Footnotes

    “How can we honor and sustain the law if our government makes unrighteous choices?” New Era, December 2016

    How can we honor and sustain the law if our government makes unrighteous choices?

    court building

    Photograph by Richard Nowitz, National Geographic Collection, Getty Images

    The twelfth article of faith says, “We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.” There will surely be times when we disagree with their decisions. If a law or government policy clearly undermines a fundamental part of God’s plan, such as religious freedom or marriage, we should do what we can in mutual respect to improve that law or help prevent proposed laws from being passed. We can express our views to government representatives, talk respectfully with others to better understand one another’s views, and encourage compromise to achieve fairness for everyone without compromising on our core beliefs. (Read more about this at lds.org/go/fairness1216.)

    Remember not to equate personal preferences with the will of God. After all, the Church does not endorse any political party, platform, or ideology, though from time to time the Church takes a stance on moral issues related to our core beliefs. We also can’t expect the law to require everyone to live every commandment of God. We know people will be blessed for keeping God’s commandments, but we need to respect their right—everyone’s God-given agency—to act on their beliefs just as we have the right to act on ours (see the eleventh article of faith). No matter what others choose, we can remain true to God’s commandments in our personal choices.