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The Bible and slavery Sat, May 18, 2013
Whenever the Bible's stance on slavery comes into question, it's usually based on a few verses in the Old Testament that essentially say, "Cut your slaves some slack every now and then," and some verses in the New Testament that essentially say, "If you're a slave, be a good one."  As a Christian, I learned to respond to these objections with such statements as, "Slavery was a fact of that time period," or "At least God supported fair treatment of slaves." 

However, upon further consideration (and insight from some light reading), here's an observation:  The Bible is often considered the focal point of modern ethics.  I mean, without the Bible, we'd all be murdering and raping each other.  The fact that slavery is absolutely and unquestionably wrong is evident to all modern people.  No one these days (aside from some groups in the Middle East and Africa) believes it's even remotely acceptable to own another person.  There's just no doubt about that anymore.  Yet the Bible, the pillar of morality and righteousness, doesn't really make a stand either way. 

If the Bible is considered to be the ultimate set of moral laws handed down by an all-knowing God, why didn't the author have the foresight to condemn a ridiculously evil practice like slavery?  He covered murder, theft, and coveting asses, but the ownership of one human being by another human being was simply accepted. #religion


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