“In this precious volume…is told the noble, simple story ‘of Plimoth Plantation.’ In the midst of suffering and privation and anxiety the pious hand of William Bradford here set down in ample detail the history of the enterprise from its inception to the year 1647. From him we may learn ‘that all great and honourable actions are accompanied with great difficulties, and must be both enterprised and overcome with answerable courages.'” (Roger Wolcott, Governor of Mass., 1897)
“The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth”
What American isn’t familiar with the story of the Pilgrims? Well, I think MANY Americans don’t know the whole story, and some people nowadays talk as if it’s nothing but a legend or exaggeration of what really happened. Of Plymouth Plantation is an account that should be required reading in every American high school, as well as one that every American Christian should be familiar with.
There are only two primary sources which give firsthand accounts of the landing of the Pilgrims and the first Thanksgiving: Bradford’s History (written in 1647) and Mourt’s Relation, attributed to Edward Winslow (published in 1622). Mourt’s Relation (named after the publisher) describes only the events of the first year, from the landing at Cape Cod in November 1620 until the following November. It’s interesting to look at this comparison of the two accounts we have of the first Thanksgiving at Plymouth. Continue reading
“Just as Luther spoke truth to power in his day, the contemporary church needs courageous spokespeople to identify specific abuses and offer positive solutions now to transform the church of today.”
It’s amazing to think that 500 years ago, on October 31, 1517, a simple German monk unwittingly turned the world upside-down when he took some initiative and boldly posted a list of concerns he had about the church, 95 to be exact. David Steele‘s brief book entitled Bold Reformer looks back to the life and example of Martin Luther, whom God used to reform a corrupt and unbiblical religious system. The author contacted me through Goodreads and asked me if I’d read and review his book, sending me a free copy when I agreed. I initially thought Bold Reformer was a biography of Martin Luther, which it really isn’t. Continue reading
I’m not sentimental —
This skin and bones is a rental,
And no one makes it out alive. – Jon Foreman of Switchfoot
How can we set our hearts on Heaven when we have an impoverished theology of Heaven? How can we expect our children to be excited about Heaven – or to stay excited about it when they grow up? Why do we talk so little about Heaven? And why is the little we have to say so vague and lifeless?
Most of us have experienced the excitement of planning or anticipating a big event. Maybe it’s a vacation we’ve been looking forward to, the birth of a baby, or the wedding of a child. As the big event gets closer, we can’t help but think and talk about it. We ask questions – What’s it going to be like? What do I need to have or bring with me? Who else will be there? We proceed to make the necessary preparations, such as gathering information or obtaining whatever materials or supplies we may need for this imminent event.
Death is the one certain imminent event that we all face. Randy Alcorn begins his book Heaven by talking about death, because let’s face it, that’s the way most of us will likely arrive there. Continue reading
The Story of Liberty: So You Will Comprehend What Liberty Has Cost and What It Is Worth by Charles C. Coffin
“If while reading this “Story” you are roused to indignation, or pained at the recital of wrong and outrage, remember that out of endurance and sacrifice has come all that you hold most dear; so will you comprehend what Liberty has cost, and what it is worth.”
In my younger years, history was probably my least favorite subject. In school, I just couldn’t see the purpose in learning about a bunch of random events and dead people and hated having to memorize dates and names. It wasn’t until after having my children, and my husband and I were exploring homeschooling that I discovered what is called the Providential view of history.
In 1876 in an annual election sermon, Reverend S.W. Foljambe defined history as:
The autobiography of Him ‘who worketh all things after the counsel of His will’ (Eph 1:11) and who is graciously timing all events after the counsel of His Christ, and the Kingdom of God on earth. It is His-Story.
This is in line with Christ’s own words in John 5:17, “My Father is working until now, and I Myself am working.” When I began to see history in this way, and understood that every person and event throughout time is part of God’s ultimate plan to bring about His purposes, suddenly history mattered. We can believe that even if we don’t see the whole picture during our lifetime here on earth. Continue reading
Posted in Christian Books, History & Biography, Non-Fiction
Tagged Charles Coffin, Christian martyrs, church history, history of England, Inquisition, Magna Carta, Memorial Day, providential history, Reformation, Story of Liberty
“Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is Sabbath of the Lord your God.” (Exodus 20:8-10)
“It is on the Sabbath Day that the Lord’s good things are served up…Would you like your life to be filled with joy in the Lord, triumph and feasting on the good things of God? That is what God promises to those who keep the Sabbath Day holy. The treasures of God’s kingdom both now and forever will overflow to those who rightly keep the fourth commandment.”
I’ve heard it said that the Puritans used to refer to the Lord’s Day, or the Sabbath, as “market day for the soul.” When God gave us the fourth commandment, it was for our good. It’s a day for our bodies to rest from the weary, tedious labors of the week. But more importantly, it’s a day on which we can focus without distraction on the things of God and communing with him, refreshing our souls and renewing our spirit for another week. It’s a day to restock our spiritual pantry so we can face what lies ahead, freshly equipped with the provisions that the Lord makes available. Continue reading
“Behold your adversary. Though you cannot see his face and detect his form, believe that such a foe withstands you. He is not a myth, nor a dream, nor a superstitious imagination. He is as real a being as ourselves…I hate the devil worse and worse every day, and I have vowed, if it is possible by preaching the Word of God, to seek to shake the very pillars of Satan’s kingdom.”
Whatever the number of people is who don’t believe that there’s a God, I suspect the number who don’t believe the devil is real is even higher. The world in general doesn’t seem to take Satan too seriously, often lumping him into the same category as vampires and zombies. We see this evident in the growing number of TV programs and movies about the supernatural. On the other hand, amongst Christians, either the topic of demonic activity is almost ignored, or it’s given too much attention and credit. C. S. Lewis commented,
There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased by both errors.