First, I want to express my faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as God in the flesh who came lived as a man, unjustly crucified, died, and on the third day rose from the dead conquering sin, death, and sealing Satan's fate. That said: I don't watch youtube google hangout videos much; especially ones where Christians debate atheists, agnostics. But, this distinct hangout caught my attention. What's that, you ask? It's no surprise that the Bible at least in appearance endorse slavery.
Often when folks confronted with the slavery question, they're quick to bark, which slavery are we talking about, which is to attempt to distinguish between biblical and 1555, Transatlantic Slave Trade. As if one were better than the other, therefore, many Christians paint a picture wherein slavery was almost desirable. Being owned by someone else doesn't sound admirable under any circumstance. The slave master has total control over every aspect of your being including your mind. And slave masters weren't so keen to point out the good qualities in slaves instead convince them that slavery was just and moral.
That's right, they control what you think and influence which religion you may practice. Conservatives crafted doctrine in such a manner as to make slavery appear justifiable.
I say that to come to a comment, response Matt Slick gave a question. "Were the slaves wrong to run away?" I am referencing the Transatlantic Slave Trade.
Matt said, "yes, they were wrong for leaving." I thought, can I cuss on my blog? Yes. Okay, I thought you bastard.
Africans: stripped of their:
* Their History
* Their Wealth
* Their Religion
* Their Culture
* Their Resources
* Their Identity
In Africa, some did practice Christianity before their capture. But, whites did something unique, they painted this portrait of a white Jesus; therefore, when you looked at the white man, you viewed him as superior.
Well, smug Matt Slick, blacks were:
Some left for dead; thrown overboard the ship, or jumped off the vessels to America.
There's nothing Christ-like about that. I mean, some would suggest that the Old Testament endorses the beating of a slave, and they would be correct. I won't pretend to understand that type of culture, but today, today we'd never okay owning another human being. We'd never be okay with whites opening auction shops for selling slaves. Now, that's where people will distinguish between the two. My question is an obvious one; if people owed a debt, why could they not just work for them, why would they need to be enslaved? Because being a slave and giving someone the right to beat you because of debt is ludicrous. Now, of course, there's a splash of nuance in every situation, but slavery appears void of everything Godly. Let me explain. Christ makes us free, not slaves. So, one can suggest there's a difference between the physical and spiritual attributes of what it means to be free; which is a strawman because to come to that conclusion would say you have to disregard your previously alleged distinction that the Bible is purely spiritual, yet use it to enslave folks.
To Matt, this slave thing is utterly striking because so long as his interpretation of the Bible is that God says it's okay, then it's okay. You wonder why the world looks at some people as the lowest common denominator for morals.
See, Matt, whether you read this or not, it matters not because new believers or questioning believers to take your word or my word for the problem with slavery. You see if there are unjust laws no obligation is needed to follow them, by conscious, not to support them.
Before I completely crush your category error and false equivocation with slavery let me say this, as a soldier it is your duty never to follow laws or orders contrary to the values of the United States Constitution. For example, knowingly committing a war crime and claiming you were following rules doesn't get you off the hook. You're still responsible.
Slaves brought from Africa to America, against their will, had every right to revolt against unfathomable treatment, many of which committed suicide rather than endure the oppression of a wicked white man telling them they, black people, deserved slavery because they were less than human. African-Americans have shown the most forgiveness of any people on earth. We've, for the most part, forgiven but not forgotten the past of this countries treatment of Blacks. However, today we face more issues of racial bias and class warfare it trickles into every aspect of life. The black inferiority complex, the treatment of slaves, didn't end it entirely took different variations and degrees thereof; which, of course, exists to this day. It's an unseen generational bias. Some call it a white privilege; others claim whites are smarter than blacks; however, slavemasters kept negros from reading, learning. Because the slavemasters knew education was power and should slaves learn the human race originated out of Africa, well that would turn the tables on the inferiority complex shoved down blacks throats. What pissed me off the most was when Matt implied blacks shouldn't have tried to escape their captors. I feel all men should be free. No one has the right to enslave another human being. Working for someone is not the same as being a slave. During Biblical times, you were used, abused and could be beaten so severely having three days to recover. If you died during those three days, the master was to face punishment. But, if not, the slavemaster was justified in beating you or your loved ones close to death.
When questioned about slavery, Matt, he said it was because God said it was moral. But, what type of slavery was God referring? Spiritual slavery, not a physical slavery. In fact, the only ones who used the Bible to justify slavery were the ones using a literal interpretation of something never meant as strict. Therefore, the Africans escaping the Transatlantic Slave Trade did well because the slave masters taught a perverted Gospel, which didn't apply to anyone let alone the African slaves.
1). Human Slavery. Using the Bible to justify slavery.
Slavery in the Bible and early Christianity. Religious Tolerance.http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_slav1.htm
2). Anthony Pagden, "The Slave Trade, Review of Hugh Thomas' Story of the Atlantic Slave Trade," The New Republic.
3). The Southern Argument for Slavery. U.S History. http://www.ushistory.org/us/27f.asp
(To be clear, I am not in this video).