Tuesday, December 18, 2018
Pacts anticipate "By the People" - 1630 The Watertown Covenant
The Watertown Covenant July 30, 1630
We whose Names are hereto subscribed, having through God’s Mercy escaped out of Pollutions of the World, & been taken into the Society of his People, with all Thankfulness do hereby both with Heart & Hand acknowledge, That his Gracious Goodness, & Fatherly Care, towards us: And for further & more full Declaration thereof, to the present & future Ages, have undertaken (for the promoting of his Glory & the Churches Good, & the Honor of our Blessed Jesus, in our more full & free subjecting of our selves & ours, under his Gracious Government, in the practice of, & Obedience unto all his Holy Ordinances & Orders, which he Hath pleased to prescribe & impose upon us) a long & hazardous Voyage from East to West, from Old England in Europe, to New England in America that we may walk before him, & serve him, without Fear in Holiness & Righteousness, all the Days of our Lives: And being safely arrived here, & thus far onwards peaceably preserved by his special Providence, that we bring forth our Intentions into Actions, & perfect our Resolutions, in the Beginnings of some Just & Meet Executions; We have separated the Day above written from all other Services, & Dedicated it wholly to the Lord in Divine Employments, for a Day of Afflicting our Souls, & humbling our selves before the Lord, to seek him, & at his Hands, a Way to walk in, by Fasting & Prayer, that we might know what was Good in his Sight: And the Lord was intreated of us.
For in the End of the Day, after the finishing of our Publick Duties, we do all, before we depart, solemnly & with all our Hearts, personally, Man by Man for our selves & others (charging them before Christ & his Elect Angels, even them that are not here with us this Day, or are yet unborn, That they keep the Promise unblameably & faithfully unto the coming of our Lord Jesus) Promise, & enter into a sure Covenant with the Lord our God, & before him with one another, by Oath & serious Protestation made, to Renounce all Idolatry & Superstition, Will-Worship, all Humane Traditions & Inventions whatsoever, in the Worship of God; & forsaking all Evil Ways, do give ourselves wholly unto the Lord Jesus, to do him faithful Service, observing & keeping all his Statutes, Commands, & Ordinances, in all Matters concerning our Reformation; his Worship, Administrations, Ministry, & Government; & in the Carriage of our selves among our selves, & one another towards another, as he hath prescribed in his Holy Word. Further swearing to cleave unto that alone, & the true Sense & meaning thereof to the utmost of our Power, as unto the most clear Light & infallible Rule, & All-sufficient Canon, in all things that concern us in this our Way. In Witness of all, we do ex Animo, & in the presence of God, hereto set our Names, or Marks, in the Day & Year above written.