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That’s right. There was another ship, one that set out from the very same port in Southampton nearly four hundred years earlier and was bound for the same land. This ship also bore many who wished to find new hope in a new land, but there were some differences. Instead of Titanic’s two thousand passengers, this ship could handle barely over one hundred, and instead of elegant ballrooms and wide promenades, this one offered little space for its crew and passengers. In fact, this ship would have fit inside one of Titanic’s many spacious rooms. And far from unsinkable, she leaked profusely and stood a good chance of sinking during the dangerous Atlantic crossing. But the fate of the Mayflower was quite different. After sixty-six difficult days at sea and against the odds, she safely reached her destination. The journey of the Mayflower made headlines as well, but they were of a different nature than Titanic’s. They had voyaged, they wrote, “for the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith” and to be “stepping stones of the light of Jesus” in this new world.

One ship was confidently hailed as the glory of a new age and man’s achievements. The other set out for the glory of God and the benefit of future generations. The first sank after three brief days of ease. The second arrived safely after sixty-six days of arduous labor and difficulty. Titanic’s name has come to be synonymous with an age of decadence, pride, and folly. The small band aboard the Mayflower helped found a nation.

 

Categories : history
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A little over one hundred years ago, she was the talk of Europe, and the newspapers claimed she was the “promise and pride of a new age,” a century still fresh and full of hopes and dreams. She was a marvel to behold. The largest moveable object man had ever made, she was over eight hundred feet long and more than eleven stories tall. She had to bear a name worthy of her stature, and so she did…Titanic. Those who boarded her in Southampton were a sort of cross-section of the age, from the super rich and famous to mere commoners. There were movie stars, government officials, criminals, and those heading west to find a new life in the new world. Anyone nervous about the long voyage might be assured by the architect and builders that this ship was unsinkable, and at least one man boasted that God himself could not sink this ship. And if God can’t sink the ship, you don’t need many lifeboats. There were barely enough for half of the passengers. We all know the rest of the story – the iceberg, the gash in the side of the ship, and how this modern marvel along with over 1,500 of her passengers sank into an icy grave in the North Atlantic.

In the wake of this disaster, pastors seized the opportunity to preach against the pride and arrogance of the age and to call for national and even international repentance. There were lessons to be learned from this disaster. Through books, plays, movies, games, articles, and museums the story of the sinking of HMS Titanic has been told and retold for a hundred years, and the lessons from this story are as relevant today as they were in 1912. That age of decadence, overconfidence, and self-indulgence is not so different than our own.

But did you know that there was another ship?

Categories : history
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