Puritan Life Essay

Submitted By 24laner
Words: 846
Pages: 4

The Puritans were a group of people who grew discontent in the Church of England and worked towards religious, moral and societal reforms. The writings and ideas of John Calvin, a leader in the Reformation, gave rise to Protestantism and were pivotal to the Christian revolt. They contended that The Church of England had become a product of political struggles and man-made doctrines. The Puritans were one branch of dissenters who decided that the Church of England was beyond reform. Escaping persecution from church leadership and the King, they came to America. The Puritans had a unique relationship with God that was much stronger than the relationships they had even with their own families and friends. The Puritans that they were flawed and helpless and that they were very capable of being very sinful beings. There was also a belief in the covenant of works. This meant that if you followed all of Gods laws, and did good things that would make him happy, you would then go to heaven. They believed that they were knit together as a body in the most strict and sacred bond and covenant with the Lord. "We do hold ourselves straightly tied to all care of each other’s goods and of the whole, by everyone and so mutually. This showed how cautious the Puritans were not do to anything that might offend The Lord, and not allow them to get into heaven.
The presence of God is evident in the passage from The History of Plymouth Plantation in every event significant or not. In his diary, William Bradford describes several occurrences in which God played a major role in deciding the outcome. According to Bradford, God can help or hurt according to His will.
The Puritans considered drunkenness and uncleanliness “acts of wickedness”. Adultery was big sinful act during this time. To go along with adultery, pre-marital sex was also a big no-no. Sexual acts of un-normality was also frowned upon. There were also many other acts of crime.
The code of the Plymouth Plantation dealt with each punishment differently. Laws embodied this code, and distinguished between capital and criminal sexual offences. "Sodomy, rapes, and buggery" were declared "capital offences lyable to death.” Other criminal offences include "ffornication and other uncleane carriages to be punished at the discretion of the Majestrates according to the nature thereof" and "ffornication before contract or marriage." One might think the double listing of fornication as dismissed, but it is an act of clearing up. The second listing of fornication is unclear, it is an outlaw of fornication before and after entering contract. These were all stated by William Bradford in “Of Plymouth Plantation.” I feel that some of these crimes should be attended to and the people should be punished for them. I do not think the punishment should go as far as to kill someone over being “unclean” in certain people’s eyes. Puritans tried to get away from harsh acts by a religious groups, but by doing so they made their own religion harsh as well. Puritans are supposed to be accepting people, but in all reality they were worse than the religions they left in Europe.
Another Puritan philosopher was Cotton