AMERICA: GOD-THANKFUL SOULS STARTED IT ALL
J. Grant Swank, Jr.
“Being thus arrived in a good harbor and brought safe to land, they fell upon their knees and blessed the God of heaven, who had brought them over the vast and furious ocean, and delivered them from all the perils and miseries thereof, again to set their feet on the firm and stable earth, their proper element.”
William Bradford (1590-1657) wrote those words: “. . .fell upon their knees and blessed the God of heaven. . .”
Bradford, part of the community of believers, sailed from Southampton, England on the Mayflower and settled in Plymouth, Massachusetts.
In his writings, he gives forth with the Christian testimony of total reliance upon the God of the Bible.
Anyone knowledgeable regarding our early settlers realizes the trials that beset them. However, their faith in Christ remained firm.
“What could now sustain them (fellow settlers) but the Spirit of God and His grace?
“May not and ought not the children of these fathers rightly say ‘Our fathers were Englishmen which came over this great ocean, and were ready to perish in this wilderness; but they cried unto the Lord, and He heard their voice and looked on their adversity.
“’Let them praise the Lord, because He is good: and His mercies endure forever.’
“‘Yea, let them which have been redeemed of the Lord, show how He hath delivered them from the hand of the oppressor. When they wandered in the desert wilderness out of the way, and found no city to dwell in, both hungry and thirsty, their soul was overwhelmed in them. Let them confess before the Lord His loving kindness and His wonderful works before the sons of me.’”
With that, Bradford unabashedly quoted Scripture, believing it to be the infallible Word of God—sustaining, guiding and lifting high.
Was this “Lord” Oprah’s New Age god or goddess? No.
Was He the worldly deity of lapsed Catholic Nancy Pelosi? No.
Was He the Allah of Barack Hussein Obama? No.
Was this “Lord” the liberal school text authors rewriting American history so as to expunge every semblance of Christian faith? No.
The “Lord” referred to by Bradford was the biblical God who became incarnate in Christ Jesus. What courage those settlers had.
God will continue to honor their faith in Him even to this very hour. Time means nothing finally to God. God is above and in time. Time answers to God.
Those early believers’ petitions and thanksgiving are still before the heavenly throne as if placed there moments ago.
Consequently, Christian, take heart. Join your prayers and gratitude to that gracious bouquet of America’s early days. Place your offerings before the eternal throne, believing the same God who delivered them will deliver us from this present threatening age.
God is the same yesterday, today and forever. God is forever faithful. God cannot forsake His grace children. The small righteous remnant is all-important to our merciful Christ.
Then lean hard upon Him, keeping the faith strong.