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Samson Occom, Sermon, Psalm 139:7

ms-number: 003220

abstract: Occom's notes for a sermon from Psalm 139:7 — "Whither shall I go from thy spirit?".

handwriting: Handwriting is clear and legible.

paper: Small sheets of paper folded into a booklet and bound with thread or twine is in good conditon, with light staining and wear.

ink: Faded brown.


Modernized Version -- deletions removed; additions added in; modern spelling and capitalization added; unfamiliar abbreviations expanded.


Psalms 139: 7
 Whither Shall I go from
 thy Spirit etc.
Infidelity and atheism
Seem to be a Sin, we are
born with by Nature,
David Says the fool says
in his Heart there is no
god, and when they own
the being of god, they think
he is altogether Such a one
as themselves etc.
David in his holy Psalms
gives us a relation of his
observations of men and
his knowledge of god, by
his Experience —

Sometimes he represents one
of gods attributes Some a‐
nother — as in the Psalm
wherein our text is etc. —
From the words I Shall
take Notice
1 That there is no such
thing as running away
from God — —
2 There is no hiding from
 him — —
1 that there is no etc. — —
this the holy Psalmist
knew by his experimental
knowledge and a lively
sense he had of god when he penned

this Psalm, as the Psalm
Shows the Psalmist was sur‐
prised, to find himself surrounded
with the omnipresence of god
and his omniscience — —
2 there is no hiding from
him. etc.
1 we Can't hide ourselves
from god who is a Spirit
let us try to hide ourselves
where we will, he will find
us out, etc. — — —
2 We Can't hide our works
from him, knows all
things etc. — — —

 Improvement — —
Is it So as we have heard
that God is a Spirit and
he is everywhere and knows
and Sees all things, that
there is no Such thing as
running away and hiding
from, I Say if these things
be true; Then, what manner
of persons ought we to be, in
all holy conversation and god
liness — how Careful ought
we to be in our Conduct in
the world, how watchful
over our thoughts words and
Actions, how Careful
ought we to be in obeying

god in his word etc. — — —
But alas how many
there are in the world
that hear of the Name
of this glorious and dread
ful god, and Yet regard him
not
and is there not a great number
in this great Congregation
that are thus regardless
of god and godliness; if not,
what means all this distrac‐
tion, and abomination, that
is manifested in and — —
know you not that god has
Seen and knows you all
and is acquainted with all

Your works, though you
may have forgot many
of your own works, but
god remembers them — —
And do you know that
god Sees you now, and
all your thoughts etc. — —
and where do you intend
to run from his presence
or where do you intend to
hide etc. — —
but in the last Place
not to Leave you here —
I will give you a directi
on — where to run, run to
god himself with a true

Repentence, and faith
toward our Lord Jesus Christ —
in Jesus Christ you hide your
selves from the wrath
of god, then you may
hide your sins, and they
will be seen and remembered
by god no more — —

Blank page.

Occom, Samson

Samson Occom was a Mohegan leader and ordained Presbyterian minister. Occom began his public career in 1742, when he was chosen as a tribal counselor to Ben Uncas II. The following year, he sought out Eleazar Wheelock, a young Anglo-American minister in Lebanon, CT, in hopes of obtaining some education and becoming a teacher at Mohegan. Wheelock agreed to take on Occom as a student, and though Occom had anticipated staying for a few weeks or months, he remained with Wheelock for four years. Occom’s academic success inspired Wheelock to open Moor’s Indian Charity School in 1754, a project which gave him the financial and political capital to establish Dartmouth College in 1769. After his time with Wheelock, Occom embarked on a 12-year mission to the Montauk of Long Island (1749-1761). He married a Montauk woman, Mary Fowler, and served as both teacher and missionary to the Montauk and nearby Shinnecock, although he was grievously underpaid for his services. Occom conducted two brief missions to the Oneida in 1761 and 1762 before embarking on one of the defining journeys of his career: a fundraising tour of Great Britain that lasted from 1765 to 1768. During this journey, undertaken on behalf of Moor’s Indian Charity School, Occom raised £12,000 (an enormous and unanticpated amount that translates roughly to more than two-million dollars), and won wide acclaim for his preaching and comportment. Upon his return to Mohegan in 1768, Occom discovered that Wheelock had failed to adequately care for his family while he was gone. Additionally, despite the vast sums of money that he had raised, Occom found himself unemployed. Wheelock tried to find Occom a missionary position, but Occom was in poor health and disinclined to leave his family again after seeing the treatment with which they had met while he was in Britain. Occom and Wheelock’s relationship continued to sour as it became apparent to Occom that the money he had labored to raise would be going towards infrastructure at Dartmouth College, Wheelock’s new project, rather than the education of Native Americans. After the dissolution of his relationship with Wheelock, Occom became increasingly focused on the needs of the Mohegan community and increasingly vocal in criticizing Anglo-Americans’ un-Christian treatment of Native Americans. In September of 1772, he delivered his famous “Sermon on the Execution of Moses Paul,” which took Anglo-American spiritual hypocrisy as one of its major themes, and which went into four printings before the end of the year. In 1773, Occom became further disillusioned when the Mason Land Case was decided in favor of the Colony of Connecticut. The details of the Mason Case are complicated, but to summarize: the Colony of Connecticut had gained control of Mohegan land early in the 18th century under very suspect circumstances, and successfully fended off the Mohegan’s 70-year-long legal challenge. The conclusion of the case came as a blow to the Mohegans, and further convinced Occom of Anglo-American corruption. Along with David Fowler (Montauk Tribe), Occom's brother-in-law, and Joseph Johnson (Mohegan), Occom's son-in-law, Occom helped found Brothertown, an Indian tribe formed from the Christian Mohegans, Pequots, Narragansetts, Montauks, Tunxis, and Niantics. They eventually settled in Oneida country in upstate New York. Occom moved there with his family in 1789, spending the remaining years of his life serving as a minster to the Brothertown, Stockbridge, and Mohegan Indians. Harried by corrupt land agents, the Brothertown and Stockbridge groups relocated to the eastern shore of Lake Winnebago, though Occom died in 1792 before he could remove himself and his family there. Occom's writings and legacy have made him one of the best known and most eminent Native Americans of the 18th century and beyond.

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