Providing for Families

Our scriptures command us: “women have claim on their husbands until they are taken.” T&C 79:1 Meaning that husbands are under a duty to provide support for their wives.

That same section also commands: “All children have claim upon their parents until they are of age.” Id. Meaning that both parents have a duty to support and care for their children’s needs. This, of course, means food, clothing, housing, medical care, education and transportation.

Paul put it more bluntly: “But if any provide not for his own, and especially for those of his own house, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” NC 1 Tim. 1:13

Christ cautioned about bringing an offering to the temple altar without paying your debts: “Therefore, if you shall come unto me, or shall desire to come unto me, or if you bring your gift to the altar and there remember that your brother has anything against you, leave there your gift before the altar, and go your way unto your brother, and first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.” NC Matt. 3:19 The gift is not acceptable while there remains a debt to be paid to another. Gifts can wait. Debts come first.

I would recommend spouses discuss and agree on how to obey these commandments. I’ve spoken with several people about donating to the temple and have reminded them that family obligations come first. If someone fails to provide for their family, while giving to the temple, that is not just unwise, it is disobedience.