The Bible and Slavery

Answering Critics Series: The Bible & Slavery
The Bible and Slavery
Why Slavery Is Wrong
A1 Ephesians 6:5-8
B1 Ephesians 6:5-8 NKJV Bond servants, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in sincerity of heart, as to Christ; (6) not with eye service, as men-pleasers, but as bond servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart, (7) with goodwill doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men, (8) knowing that whatever good anyone does, he will receive the same from the Lord, whether he is a slave or free.
B2 Does God like slavery?
C1 Often atheists will make a statement as “Slavery remains a modern day travesty – a travesty with the Bible and the Koran on the wrong side of the issue. You would never think that owning people as slaves is immoral if you rely on the Bible or the Koran as your source of morality. If you need the Bible or Koran to tell you something as obvious as owning people as slaves is immoral, then you would never think that because neither the Bible nor the Koran says a word against slavery.”
C2 Two types are spoken of in the Bible
D1 Voluntary—because of debt, etc.
D2 Involuntary—because of war, etc.
E1 Old Testament
F1 Cities that are not in the land of Canaan (Deuteronomy 20)
G1 Offer peace. If they agree, they will serve you.
G2 Offer peace. If they reject, the men die and the others are spoils of war to enjoy, thus the people were to be treated kindly (see Jamieson, Fausset, Brown commentary).
F2 Cities in the land of Canaan. (Deuteronomy 20) All must die, because they have sinned so much, that God has judged them, and Israel was to carry out the sentence.
E2 New Testament. The saints lived in the Roman culture and were under Roman laws.
F1 1 Corinthians 7:21-23 GW Were you a slave when you were called? That shouldn’t bother you. However, if you have a chance to become free, take it. (22) If the Lord called you when you were a slave, you are the Lord’s free person. In the same way, if you were free when you were called, you are Christ’s slave. (23) You were bought for a price. Don’t become anyone’s slaves.
F2 Ephesians 6:5 GW Slaves, obey your earthly masters with proper respect. Be as sincere as you are when you obey Christ.
C3 Old Testament rules for slaves (Jews could not be considered property)
D1 If one is a thief (to serve until restitution is paid in full): Exodus 22:2-3 NKJV If the thief is found breaking in, and he is struck so that he dies, there shall be no guilt for his bloodshed. (3) If the sun has risen on him, there shall be guilt for his bloodshed. He should make full restitution; if he has nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.
D2 If one sells himself because of debt (as in indentured servant): Leviticus 25:39-41 NKJV ‘And if one of your brethren who dwells by you becomes poor, and sells himself to you, you shall not compel him to serve as a slave. (40) As a hired servant and a sojourner he shall be with you, and shall serve you until the Year of Jubilee. (41) And then he shall depart from you—he and his children with him—and shall return to his own family. He shall return to the possession of his fathers. AND Deuteronomy 15:12-15 NKJV “If your brother, a Hebrew man, or a Hebrew woman, is sold to you and serves you six years, then in the seventh year you shall let him go free from you. (13) And when you send him away free from you, you shall not let him go away empty-handed; (14) you shall supply him liberally from your flock, from your threshing floor, and from your winepress. From what the LORD has blessed you with, you shall give to him. (15) You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God redeemed you; therefore I command you this thing today.
D3 War (possibly until they die): 2 Samuel 12:29-31 NKJV So David gathered all the people together and went to Rabbah, fought against it, and took it. (30) Then he took their king’s crown from his head. Its weight was a talent of gold, with precious stones. And it was set on David’s head. Also he brought out the spoil of the city in great abundance. (31) And he brought out the people who were in it, and put them to work with saws and iron picks and iron axes, and made them cross over to the brick works. So he did to all the cities of the people of Ammon. Then David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.
D4 Master causes injury to slave (injured and dies, the slave owner will be given the death penalty. Injured and lives, slave owner loses a worker. My understanding is that if injured, the slave is to be set free, see verses 26-27): Exodus 21:20-21 NKJV “And if a man beats his male or female servant with a rod, so that he dies under his hand, he shall surely be punished. (21) Notwithstanding, if he remains alive a day or two, he shall not be punished; for he is his property.
D5 Master abuses slave (Slave goes free): Exodus 21:26-27 GNB “If someone hits his male or female slave in the eye and puts it out, he is to free the slave as payment for the eye. (27) If he knocks out a tooth, he is to free the slave as payment for the tooth.
D6 If slave runs away (Do not return them to their master): Deuteronomy 23:15-16 GNB “If slaves run away from their owners and come to you for protection, do not send them back. (16) They may live in any of your towns that they choose, and you are not to treat them harshly.
D7 Slave traders must receive the death penalty. Exodus 21:16 NKJV He who kidnaps a man and sells him, or if he is found in his hand, shall surely be put to death.
C4 New Testament rules for slaves
D1 1 Corinthians 7:21-23 GW Were you a slave when you were called? That shouldn’t bother you. However, if you have a chance to become free, take it. (22) If the Lord called you when you were a slave, you are the Lord’s free person. In the same way, if you were free when you were called, you are Christ’s slave. (23) You were bought for a price. Don’t become anyone’s slaves.
D2 Ephesians 6:5 GW Slaves, obey your earthly masters with proper respect. Be as sincere as you are when you obey Christ.
D3 Paul’s appeal to Philemon to free Onesimus from slavery. Philemon 1:8-21 GW Christ makes me bold enough to order you to do the right thing. (9) However, I would prefer to make an appeal on the basis of love. I, Paul, as an old man and now a prisoner for Christ Jesus, (10) appeal to you for my child Onesimus [Useful]. I became his spiritual father here in prison. (11) Once he was useless to you, but now he is very useful to both of us. (12) I am sending him back to you. This is like sending you a part of myself. (13) I wanted to keep him here with me. Then he could have served me in your place while I am in prison for spreading the Good News. (14) Yet, I didn’t want to do anything without your consent. I want you to do this favor for me out of your own free will without feeling forced to do it. (15) Maybe Onesimus was gone for a while so that you could have him back forever- (16) no longer as a slave but better than a slave-as a dear brother. He is especially dear to me, but even more so to you, both as a person and as a Christian. (17) If you think of me as your partner, welcome him as you would welcome me. (18) If he wronged you in any way or owes you anything, charge it to me. (19) I, Paul, promise to pay it back. I’m writing this with my own hand. I won’t even mention that you owe me your life. (20) So, because we’re brothers in the Lord, do something for me. Give me some comfort because of Christ. (21) I am confident as I write to you that you will do this. And I know that you will do even more than I ask.
C4 William Wilberforce (1759-1833)
D1 Fought to abolish slavery in the British Empire due to Christian principles.
D2 Two links for studying him.
C5 A few more verses
D1 The Bible recognizes that slavery is part of the Roman government and society, but Christians who are slaves, free, or masters are to think and act like this: Ephesians 6:5-9 NLT – Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. Try to please them all the time, not just when they are watching you. As slaves of Christ, do the will of God with all your heart. Work with enthusiasm, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. Remember that the Lord will reward each one of us for the good we do, whether we are slaves or free. Masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Don’t threaten them; remember, you both have the same Master in heaven, and he has no favorites.
D2 If you can become free, do so: 1 Corinthians 7:21 NLT – Are you a slave? Don’t let that worry you—but if you get a chance to be free, take it.
D3 In God’s view those who are slaves are free and those who are free are slaves: 1 Corinthians 7:21-22 NLT – Are you a slave? Don’t let that worry you–but if you get a chance to be free, take it. And remember, if you were a slave when the Lord called you, you are now free in the Lord. And if you were free when the Lord called you, you are now a slave of Christ.
A2 The slavery that is most dangerous
B1 Some verses
C1 Romans 6:20 LEB For when you were slaves of sin, you were free with respect to righteousness.
C2 John 8:34 NKJV Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.
C3 Sin is an addiction. Sin controls us. Romans 6:16 NLT Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.
B2 The end result of this slavery leads to death just like most addictions:
C1 Romans 6:23 NKJV For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
C2 Galatians 3:22 NLT But the Scriptures declare that we are all prisoners of sin, so we receive God’s promise of freedom only by believing in Jesus Christ.
B3 The rescue from this addiction, slavery, to sin is only through grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone. No one can do this themselves.
C1 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 NLT I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said.
C2 1 Corinthians 15:57 NLT But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.
C3 Acts 4:12 NLT There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.
A3 Application
B1 It is not God’s will for people to be slaves. God does not have that kind of leadership. He is a shepherd, but most of those with authority are slave owners.
C1 John 10:11 NKJV I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
C2 Matthew 20:25 NLT But Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them.
B2 Sin is addictive. All humans are addicted to sin.
B3 Jesus died for us to be free from the addiction to sin: 1 Timothy 2:6 NLT He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone. This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time.
B4 We are to use our body to honor God: 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NLT Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.
B5 Jesus didn’t live and die to change the government, but if all were real Christians, society and government would change.
Posted by Choco in 2018 at 16:46
Labels: Answering critics series, Bible, Evil, Slavery


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