The Religious Roots of Thanksgiving

Baylor University history professor Thomas Kidd has a helpful article on the history of Thanksgiving in America.

In “Not All Turkey and Touchdowns,” Kidd observes that while “modern Thanksgiving has become largely non-religious—focused more on food, family, and football than explicitly thanking God—the Pilgrims’ experience reveals a compelling religious aspect of our country’s roots.”

Kidd demonstrates that beginning with the Mayflower pilgrims (you’ll enjoy reading an excerpt from the “Mayflower Compact”) the idea of setting aside days explicitly for thanksgiving to God are common to the American experiment.

Read the whole thing here. And even as you enjoy plenty of food and football tomorrow (I know I will), let’s remember to “give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever” (Ps. 107:1).

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