"What our forefathers with so much difficulty secured, do not basely relinquish." These are the words translated from Latin that are etched on the gravestone of William Bradford, governor of the Massachusetts Colony, co-writer of the Mayflower Compact, inventor of the free market system, and my grandfather 13 generations removed. Bradford is often remembered for being one of the Pilgrims who survived their first winter in the new America. He is one of the brave men and women who endured such great hardship to help make this nation what it is-a beacon of religious and economic freedom blessed in covenant with God. And unto his death his gravestone warns us not to basely relinquish these liberties.
The Mayflower Compact is a covenant with God, dedicating this land now called the United States of America to the advancement of the Christian faith. The Compact declares, "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 Honor 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." With these words, 41 men agreed to govern in submission and obedience to God.
As anyone can see, these were men and women dedicated to establishing a land for the advancement of the Christian faith and they set themselves apart bringing all they had and all they claimed in covenant with God. And it was not just for their time on earth, but as what was written on Bradford's grave, the covenant and their subsequent sacrifices were not to be relinquished. As America embraces socialism and human secularism, let us remember that only 41 men began a nation with their signatures. There are more of us today that are citizens of the Kingdom of God, and we can reclaim what our forefathers with so much difficulty secured. Jesus said in Matthew 19:26, "With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible." Let us give thanks.