Beloved: Grace and Peace
Elkmont Baptist Church
Dearest and Beloved
Thanksgiving and Pilgrims: A Lesson in Protecting Our Families
Bradford's History of the Plymouth Settlement.
Bradford, W. (1988).
Grace to you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Thanksgiving normally reminds us of the Pilgrims, does it not? Let me ask you a question: did the Pilgrims come to the New World to gain religious freedom? Yes and no. You see, they had fled from England to Leyden, The Netherlands, to gain religious freedom in 1609. William Bradford recounts their decision and their reasons to leave Leyden and head for the New World in
The Plymouth Settlement.
The third of four reasons he gave was:
But still more lamentable, and of all sorrows most heavy to be borne, was that many of the children, influenced by these conditions, and the great licentiousness of the young people of the country, and the many temptations of the city, were led by evil example unto dangerous courses, getting the reins off their necks and leaving their parents . . . . So they saw their posterity would be in danger to degenerate and become corrupt. (Bradford, 1988, p. 21)
Do not our children face similar perils in today's culture? Are we willing to go to a "new world" to protect our children?
Nehemiah recounts how the LORD led him back to Jerusalem to complete the walls of the city which were breached. Nehemiah 4:13-14 records for us what he did and said:
on the higher places, I
even set the people after their families with their swords, their spears, and their bows. And I looked, and rose up, and said unto the nobles, and to the rulers, and to the rest of the people, Be not ye afraid of them: remember the Lord,
and terrible, and fight for your brethren, your sons, and your daughters, your wives, and your houses.
He set the people after their families, i.e., he set them to work on the wall in front of their homes. They would be the walls for their family until Jerusalem's walls could be finished. What should we do to be walls for our sons and daughters, our wives, and our homes?
Grace to you.
(1909)). San Antonio, Texas: Mantle Ministries. (Original work published 1856)
(H. Paget, Trans.
Therefore set I in the lower places behind the wall,