One of the best books on world history that we have ever read is The Foundations of Our World, Vol. I – From Creation to the Middle Ages by Dr. Phil Stringer with Sharon Quimby. We are happy to report that the second volume is now available entitled, Foundations of Our World, Vol. 2 – From The Middle Ages to the Millenium. It is the only complete history written from the philosophical idea that history in reality is "HIS STORY." So, it isn't unusual to go behind the scenes, as in the case of the Indian maiden Pocahontas, and see her in a different light than she has been painted in modern day public school textbooks and the fictitious Disney movie. For instance, a hundred years ago a public school history book tells the account of how Pocahontas received Christ as her Savior and turned from paganism to Christianity. But today, to teach such history would be termed illegal.
Statue of Pocahontas, Saint George’s Church, Gravesend, Kent, England
The Indian was not the "Noble Savage" that we have been led to believe. Neither did the settlers come and "steal" their land. There were only approximately a million Indians in this vast area that made up the land mass of North America to begin with. The 500 American Indian tribes also constantly warred with each other. Violence and raiding was a way of life, as was torture and kidnapping. A man that killed another man was expected to lay claim to his wife. Each tribe had their own system of gods, "nature spirits" which they believed indwelled animals and trees.
Powhatan had conquered over 30 Indian tribes, called the Powhatan Confederacy, which claimed all the land the tribes had ever walked on, including the land the European settlers were living on. The settlers became acquainted with some of the Indians, including Pocahontas. The name "Pocahontas" is actually a vulgarism referring to a sexually active young woman. At the age of 12 or 13, Pocahontas began visiting the settlement and found their morality to be humorous. In fact, she amused herself by taking off her clothes and cartwheeling through the settlement, while laughing at the settlers' embarrassment. Morality was an entirely foreign concept to her. With some exceptions, she might fit in well in some circles today.
Pocahontas later became involved in the famous story of Capt. John Smith, who was taken captive by the Indians. According to Smith, at the point that he was to be killed, Pocahontas intervened on his behalf and saved his life. She also became a great friend to the settlers of Virginia; and on three separate occasions, as the daughter of the emperor, she convinced the Indians to sell food to the needy settlers. She also warned the settlers of a surprise attack by the Indians. The settlers became very fond of Pocahontas in spite of her wild behavior.
Powhatan determined to get her away from the settlers, and married her off to the chief of a western tribe. While away, serious trouble developed between the Indians and the settlers, and after she returned in two years she ended up being taken hostage by the settlers. During her captivity she was required to wear clothes, which she found to be a great burden, and also the teachings of Christianity were explained to her. In time, Pocahontas embraced the faith, became a Christian believer, and would no longer allow anyone to call her Pocahontas. As a new Christian, Pocahontas changed her name to Rebecca.
John Rolfe, one of the young men assigned to explain Christianity to her, wrote a beautiful letter to the governor requesting permission to marry Pocahontas. He also approached Pocahontas' father and received his permission. John then took his new wife to England. Now dressing as a Christian, Pocahontas (Rebecca) was appalled at some of the immodest clothing worn by the ladies of England. In fact, when John Rolfe and Rebecca were given an audience with King James and Queen Anne, she rebuked the Queen of England for not dressing modestly, insisting that Christians should know better.
In March of 1617, Rolfe, Rebecca, and their child boarded a ship to return to Virginia; the ship had only gone as far as Gravesend on the River Thames when she became gravely ill. She was taken ashore and died in John Rolfe's arms at the age of twenty-two. It was not known what caused her death, but theories range from smallpox, pneumonia, or tuberculosis, to her having been poisoned. According to Rolfe, she died saying, "all must die, but tis enough that her child liveth."
Her funeral took place on March 21, 1617 in the parish of Saint George's, Gravesend. The site of her grave is thought to be underneath the church's chancel, though since that church was destroyed in a fire in 1727, her exact gravesite is unknown. Her memory is honored with a life-size bronze statue at St. George's Church by William Ordway Partridge.
The real story of Pocahontas is a tremendous illustration of someone who trusted Christ and left the Indian culture, precisely because she trusted Christ as her Savior.
We wonder what Pocahontas (Rebecca) would have to say to many of the church teens and ladies of the average "Christian" church, if she should visit on a Sunday morning today? But even more than that, what are they going to say when they meet her on Judgment Day?
I Timothy 2:9(a) "In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel…. "
– By Dr. Greg J. Dixon