In the Latter-day Saint community, it is often considered sufficient to simply live the gospel and raise a righteous family. Some feel politics are too divisive and they don’t want that spirit in their lives. Others think it is unnecessary to get their hands dirty because “God will sort it all out in the end”. While it is true that family is our number one priority on this earth, and God’s plans will not be overturned, we have been called as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints to be missionaries and spread truth–all truth–even if that means standing up for the unpopular and controversial. Satan would like to lull us into a state of complacency. President Ezra Taft Benson warned:
“Now Satan is anxious to neutralize the inspired counsel of the Prophet and hence keep the priesthood off-balance, ineffective and inert in the fight for freedom. He does this through diverse means including the use of perverse reasoning. For example, he will argue, “There is no need to get involved in the fight for freedom – all you need to do is live the gospel.” Of course this is a contradiction, because we cannot fully live the gospel and not be involved in the fight for freedom. We would not say to someone, “There is no need to be baptized – all you need to do is live the gospel.” That would be ridiculous because baptism is a part of the gospel. How would you have reacted if during the War in Heaven someone had said to you, “Look, just do what’s right, there is no need to get involved in the fight for free agency.” Now it is obvious what the devil is trying to do, but it is sad to see many of us fall for his destructive line. The cause of freedom is the most basic part of our religion. Our position on freedom helped get us to this earth, and it can make the difference as to whether we get back home or not.”“Our Immediate Responsibility”- Ezra Taft Benson BYU Devotional, October 25, 1966
To avoid the sharing and fighting for political truths and free principles is to shirk an important part of spreading The Plan of Salvation, Happiness, and Free Agency. We have a responsibility to educate ourselves on the principles of freedom and act in accordance with those principles. As President Benson said: we will not have lived the gospel if we don’t fight for freedom. This fight has eternal consequences and we cannot count on the Lord turning away battles and trouble from us. President Brigham Young taught:
“Have I any good reason to say to my Father in heaven, ‘fight my battles,’ when he has given me the sword to wield, the arm and the brain that I can fight for myself? Can I ask Him to fight my battles and sit quietly down waiting for Him to do so? I cannot…to ask God to do for me that which I can do for myself is preposterous to my mind.”1Journal of Discourses 12:241.
“We all believe that the Lord will fight our battles but how? Will he do it while we are unconcerned and make no effort whatever for our own safety when the enemy is upon us? . . . it would be quite as reasonable to expect remission of sins without baptism, as to expect the Lord to fight our battles without our taking every precaution to be prepared to defend ourselves. The Lord requires us to be quite as willing to fight our own battles as to have Him fight them for us. If we are not ready for the enemy when he comes upon us, we have not lived up to the requirements of Him who guides the ship of Zion, or who dictates the affairs of His kingdom.”2JD 11:131
In the words of Henry Wadsworth, “Let us, then, be up and doing! With a heart for any fate” not hearers only who deceive themselves into thinking they are doing their part. Learn the principles of free government and about our inspired Constitution. Learn how the principles of agency and the proper role of government apply to the issues of the day: economics, healthcare, welfare, socialism, war, free speech, etc. You cannot be neutral or unengaged. When we covenanted to follow Christ at baptism we left the neutral ground. We covenant to represent Christ and his teachings in every aspect of our lives here on earth: including politics. If you don’t know where to start, check out our page on getting started. What’s truly important is starting now. As you do, the Holy Ghost will testify that it’s true. President John Taylor called on all of us when he said
“…God expects us to…maintain the principle of human rights…we owe it to all liberty-loving men, to stand up for human rights and protect human freedom, and in the name of God we will do it.”3JD-23:263-266
The call for latter-day freemen to come together and stand for freedom has been made by latter-day prophets and apostles. Come join the ranks! Come join the ranks!