President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency, this week shared his thoughts on the U.S. Constitution through social media and an essay for the Deseret magazine.
″The Constitution is unique because God revealed that He ‘established’ it ‘for the rights and protection of all flesh’ (Doctrine and Covenants 101:77, 80). That is why this Constitution is of special concern for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints throughout the world. We should learn and advocate the inspired principles of the Constitution,” President Oaks wrote.
Sunday, July 4, marks Independence Day in the United States and it’s the anniversary of when the Continental Congress formally adopted the Declaration of Independence.
“We should seek out and support wise and good persons who will support those principles in their public actions,” President Oaks continued. “We should be knowledgeable citizens who are active in making our influence felt in civic affairs. I testify of the divinely inspired Constitution of the United States and pray that we who recognize the Divine Being who inspired it will always uphold and defend its great principles.”
President Oaks, who was also honored this weekend at the Freedom Awards Gala on July 1 for his lifelong work to promote the values of God, family, freedom and country, also spoke at the April 2021 general conference on defending the Constitution.
In his essay for the Deseret magazine, he shares the origin of the U.S. Constitution and also the his study of it during the past 60 years, including as he has worked as a law clerk to the chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, 15 years as a law professor and three and a half years on the Utah Supreme Court, and also how it relates to his faith.
“George Washington was perhaps the first to use the word miracle in describing the drafting of the U.S. Constitution. In a 1788 letter to the Marquis de Lafayette, he said: ‘It appears to me, then, little short of a miracle, that the delegates from so many different states (which states you know are also different from each other in their manners, circumstances and prejudices) should unite in forming a system of national Government, so little liable to well-founded objections.’
“It was a miracle.”
“The 13 colonies and 3.5 million Americans who had won independence from the British crown a few years earlier were badly divided on many fundamental issues. Some thought the colonies should reaffiliate with the British crown. Among those who favored continued independence, the most divisive issue was whether the United States should have a strong central government to replace the weak ‘league of friendship’ established by the Articles of Confederation.”
Read the full article at deseret.com.