(August 23, 2013)
There are valuable aspects of King Benjamin's speech, but perhaps nothing is more valuable than his eloquent reminder of our place in relation to the Lord. Like many other father and child relationships, the child could not exist without the father. The child could not persist without the father providing for him or her. And, thus, the child has no right to demand anything of the father.
We may make some exceptions in rare cases here on Earth for particularly (spectacularly) bad fathers, but for the most part we recognize that as true. The child has some claim on the father, but not because of anything inherent to the child but rather a collective societal judgment that the father should take care of the child so the burden does not fall on society.
Of course, that is not what we are dealing with here. Our Father is a perfect Father. He cares for us completed and loved us perfectly. Those things that He asks us to do (our chores, if you will – otherwise known as our stewardships) serve only to bless our lives and the lives of those around us. Why should we then assume to hold any claim on Him for...anything? He does not owe anything to us, and yet – because He is perfect – He is the only one that we can count on to provide for us. It is remarkable when you think about it, and King Benjamin's talk helps remind us of this incredible relationship between perfect Father and imperfect Child.