In the news, Issues of the Day

The Mayflower Compact Story

Do you think it would have been possible for you to travel for 66 days, over two months, on a small wooden ship with more than 100 people aboard crossing the Atlantic Ocean? There were 50 men, 19 women and 33 young adults and children. The Pilgrims in coming to America did this in the year 1620 on a ship called Mayflower.

 

This ship actually began its journey from England with an accompanying ship called the Speedwell. They had to turn back to England twice because of issues with the Speedwell ship leaking.

 

During their travel, lives were lost and a life was given birth to named Oceanus (seems appropriate). Finally, after 66 long days the ship reached Cape Cod on November 11, 1620.

 

These were Separatists, members of the Puritan sect that split from the Church of England. They had received permission from the King of England to settle on land that was near the mouth of the Hudson River (New York today) all the way south to the northern Virginia border, but they landed in New England and chose to stay there and build their community. It is here they would write and sign (signed by 41 of the colonists) the Mayflower Compact.

 

This document is believed to have impacted the United States Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. Below, I’ve placed the words of this document so you can read it for yourself.

IN THE NAME OF GOD, AMEN. We, whose names are underwritten, the Loyal Subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, &c. Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and Advancement of the Christian Faith, and the Honour of our King and Country, a Voyage to plant the first Colony in the northern Parts of Virginia; Do by these Presents, solemnly and mutually, in the Presence of God and one another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil Body Politick, for our better Ordering and Preservation, and Furtherance of the Ends aforesaid: And by Virtue hereof do enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equal Laws, Ordinances, Acts, Constitutions, and Officers, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general Good of the Colony; unto which we promise all due Submission and Obedience. IN WITNESS whereof we have hereunto subscribed our names at Cape-Cod the eleventh of November, in the Reign of our Sovereign Lord

Why is this important? The Mayflower Compact was a set of rules for the governance of a new community being establish in a New World. Without laws and those who enforce them, it would create social dysfunction for the colonists.

Within the compact you discover they were seeking the right to worship their God as they desired and liberally mentioned this in the text of the document. They solely and faithfully lived by the Christian faith.

They created one society and worked in unity to further it.

They would remain loyal subjects of the King, even with their desire to self-govern. It was the first document to establish self-government in the New World. And it was successful at democracy and played an important role for future colonists.

Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended.For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. (Romans 13:1-4)

The “Advancement of the Christian Faith” found within the document point to the fact that these were misionaries and church planters ready to serve God in a New World for their King.

(Note: Thanks to History.com for the facts relating to the Mayflower ship.)

Standard

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.