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HOLLY - What is the LDS view on military service?
JOEL - One of our Articles of Faith(#12) says the following:
"We believe in being subject to kings, presidents,rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law."
Therefore if our government asks us to go to war, we go. Gennerally speaking we renounce war and proclaim peace:
"Therefore, renounce war and proclaim peace, and seek diligently to turn the hearts of the children to their fathers, and the hearts of the fathers to the children; (D&C 98:16).
We are followers of our Redeemer, the Lord Jesus Christ, who was the Prince of Peace. But if we are called upon to defend our country then we support that call and serve our country the best we can in whatever branch of the military we are in; regardless of whether we are drafted or sign up voluntarily.
Our scriptures tell us that there are times and circumstances when nations are justified, in fact have an obligation, to fight for family, for liberty, and against tyranny, threat, and oppression (See Alma 46).
Latter-day Saints in the military do not need to feel torn between their country and their God. If they must go to war, they should go in a spirit of truth and righteousness, with a desire to do good. They should go with love in their hearts for all Godís children, including those on the opposing side. Then, if they are required to shed anotherís blood, their action will not be counted as a sin. Those in the Church who serve in the military are treated by other Church members with respect and gratitude for their choice to serve their country in this way.
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