The Oft-Tarnished City on a Hill

In His Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5) Jesus said, “A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.” Invoking the image of a city on a hill in a 1630 sermon to the Puritans (while they were aboard ship bound for Massachusetts), Governor John Winthrop explained his view of A Model of Christian Charity. Winthrop called on the people assembled to “follow the counsel of Micah” (from Micah 6:8) by doing justly, loving mercy and walking humbly with our God.winthropThe image of a city on a hill represented Winthrop’s vision of what the new country could mean in contrast to the outside world. If the people were faithful, if they followed God’s leading, if they worked with one purpose and lived peacefully with each other. This vision was shared by many of these brave men and women who crossed a sea and launched into the unknown. The compact to which they pledged was grounded in Christian principles. Continue Reading →