In this essay, I will give the views of these three people, Cotton, Winthrop, and Rowlandson, regarding the Puritans’ errand in the wilderness. Lets look at them one at a time, shall we?
1) John Cotton: He wrote and was the well known speaker of the famous sermon “God’s Promise to His Plantation”. In this sermon he spoke to the Pilgrims who were leaving for America, and in this sermon he tells that the Pilgrims that going to America is God’s will. He also said that The land will be free fro settlement once the Pilgrims got there. He elaborates on the several many ways that God has lead the Pilgrims to starting their own colony. Cotton’s reason for leaving was mainly for better business opportunities for the Pilgrims, for the Pilgrims to plant their own colony, better employment, and to have the freedom to have their own form of worship and religion, different than what the Parliament was forcing them to follow back in Europe. He specifies numerous different Biblical passages and quotes them, as was done in Puritanism. This leaving England and going to a different country is just like what happened in the Bible, when the Israelite’s departed for Canaan, leaving a country where they were not allowed to freely worship, to move to a different country so that they could worship, just like the Israelite’s.
2) John Winthrop: He was another great influential figure of this movement. Winthrop actually served as governor of the colony for some time. He also wrote a speech for the departing Pilgrims. He too, wrote in several Biblical passages into his speech. His account is set up in an odd kind of question and answer format. In this ‘different’ account, he tells of the struggles of not knowing what to look forward to in this place where they were setting up this new colony. His hope was that the Puritans would work together to build a strong working body, but it did not turn out as hoped. Many Puritans disobeyed laws and grew further from the reason they even set foot in America in the first place. This is also just like the Israelite’s departure for the land of Canaan.
3) Mary Rowlandson: A minister’s wife, would have been expected to be devout, submissive to her husband, quiet, and even hard working, just like any other wife during that time. In this colony, feminism could destroy the patriarchy, and were not allowed to make other women to differentiate from the group, but she wrote an account of Indian captivity from her own personal experience. While she was in captivity, she experienced the harshness of the wilderness. She was dragged around by her Indian masters and was forced to live in extreme hunger. However, she kept returning to her belief that God had kept her alive and was sustaining her, and that it was Him that caused her to be rescued, and that He caused her to be brought through the trial of Indian captivity to bring her closer to Him.