One of the most common images in Western and Eastern religions alike is of God as a parent and of human beings as God’s children. Billions pray to God as their parent, invoke the brotherhood and sisterhood of all people to promote peace, and reach out to the weary and troubled out of deep conviction that each of God’s children has great worth.
But people of different faiths understand the parent-child relationship between God and humans in significantly different ways. Some understand the phrase “child of God” as an honorary title reserved only for those who believe in God and accept His guidance as they might accept a father’s. Many see parent-child descriptions of God’s relationship to humanity as metaphors to express His love for His creations and their dependence on His sustenance and protection.
Latter-day Saints see all people as children of God in a full and complete sense; they consider every person divine in origin, nature, and potential. Each has an eternal core and is “a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents.