Monday, 13 August 2007

Glasgow's Motto - Discovering the UK's Christian Heritage

The motto of the City of Glasgow

Imagine hearing the words "Lord let Glasgow flourish through the preaching of thy word and the praising of thy name" in the prayer of a politician. Well, in the 1637 this wonderful words were not simply a private prayer but were inscribed on a bell made for the Tron Kirk in Trongate, Scotland. The motto was shortened in 1699 to "Let Glasgow flourish", which was adopted officially and became part of the coat of arms of the City of Glasgow in 1866. Whatever the precise origin of the words they surely come from sentiments that are thoroughly confident in the power of God's Word to transform a people. Such thinking is far from that which informed Glasgow's highly successful marketing motto of the 1980's "Glasgow's miles better"!

This motto inspired Charles Spurgeon to say ...

"Glasgow's motto is, "Let Glasgow flourish by the preaching of the Word." It is the coat of arms of liberty herself. Liberty flourishes by the preaching of the Word of God. Certain it is that wherever you find Protestantism, you find liberty, and wherever you leave Protestantism behind you, you begin to feel the yoke, and to hear the groans of the oppressed. It is true that Protestantism doth not in every place produce perfect liberty, because it is not sufficiently true to itself. There are still places where the slave feels the lash, while his master calls himself a Christian; but this is not the legitimate effect of our religion, but rather the effect of a delusion which hell itself did first invent, and which nought but the deep depravity of men could ever permit to stand before the face of God's sun."