Sermon Illustrations

The Bounty’s Bible

The English ship Bounty, commanded by Lt. William Bligh, journeyed to the South Pacific in 1787. Many signed on considering the voyage a trip to paradise. Bligh appointed a young friend, Fletcher Christian, to the post of second in command. The Bounty stayed in Tahiti for 6 months and led by the happy go lucky Fletcher Christian enjoyed paradise to the fullest. On April 28, 1789, Fletcher Christian staged the most famous mutiny in history. He and his mutineers set Bligh and his supporters adrift in an overloaded lifeboat.

The mutineers aboard the Bounty immediately began quarreling about what to do next. Christian returned to Tahiti, where he left some of the mutineers, kidnapped some women, took some slaves, and traveled with the remaining crew a thousand miles to uninhabited Pitcairn Island. There the little group unraveled. They distilled whiskey from a native plant. Drunkenness, disease, and murder took the lives of all men except for one. John Adams, a.k.a. Alexander Smith, found himself as the only man on the island surrounded by an assortment of women and children.

Then an amazing change occurred. Smith found the Bounty’s neglected Bible. As he read it, he took its message to heart, then began instructing the little community. He taught the colonists the scriptures and helped them obey its instructions. The message of Christ so transformed their lives that twenty years later, in...

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