It’s the Law


(Based on a true incident)
He that keepeth the laws of God hath no need to break the laws of the land (D&C 58:21).

“So, Christopher, what did you do in Primary today?” Dad asked after church.

“We talked about being honest,” Christopher answered. “And we worked on the Articles of Faith. I have all but the thirteenth memorized.”

“Good for you!” Dad said. “Mom and I are really pleased that you’re learning them.” He looked at Sarah. “What did you do today, honey?”

“We ate crackers, and we sang songs, and I colored this picture for you.”

“It’s beautiful, Sarah. Thank you.” Dad pulled his keys out of his pocket, unlocked the car, and opened the door. “Get yourselves strapped in. Mom will be here soon.”

“Why do I have to wear a seat belt?” Christopher asked as he and Sarah buckled up.

Before Dad could answer, Sarah added, “Why do I have to sit in a car seat? I’m not a baby.”

Dad smiled. “There are two reasons. First, we use seat belts and car seats because they will protect us if we are in an accident. Second, we do it because it’s the law and we obey the law.”

“I know lots of people who don’t wear seat belts,” Christopher protested.

“Whether to wear a seat belt or not is each person’s own choice, but they have to live with the consequences,” Dad explained. “That’s part of Heavenly Father’s plan.”

“Oh, Dad,” Christopher laughed. “Heavenly Father doesn’t care about seat belts.”

“Or car seats,” Sarah chimed in.

“You don’t think so?” Dad asked. “Christopher, let me hear you say the twelfth article of faith.”

“‘We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.’”

“Very good. Now, what does it mean?”

“It means that we believe it’s OK to have a president or a king or something like that—right?”

“That’s part of it,” Dad said, “but it also means that we believe in obeying the laws set by the president or king or whoever is in the government. And I believe that that applies to laws about seat belts and car seats.”

Just then Mom came. “Sorry to keep you waiting,” she said. “We can go now.”

“Not until you fasten your seat belt,” Sarah told her.

“It’s the law, you know,” Christopher added, “and we believe in obeying the law.”

[illustrations] Illustrated by Julie F. Young