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Selections: A Christian's Duty To The Slave In The Church An...

Selections: A Christian's Duty To The Slave In The Church An... image
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Í5ut the mea8ure6 the mensures!' What measurca shall we adopt? Bible measuree, to be surc, and none else. j, Sympathy with the Slave. - 'Remember them that are in bonds, as bound with them.' Ueb. xü. 3. Make thñr case your oten, and ynu will think Üllle difTèrently about 'tlie measnros.' 2. Pray for the Slave. Pray ahvays for all men, and especially for the crushed the broken-hearted. Ask for youreelf wiédom from above to guide you in your 'measures and to deliver you from the wisdom of this world,' whicii is 'foolisbness with God ' 3. Plead for the oppressed. Oppn thv mout h for the dumb, in the cause of all such as are appointed to destniction.' Open thy mouth - jarige rijrlitfonslv, nnd plead the cause ofthepoorand needy.' Prov. xxxi. 8-9. 4. Rrprove the oppressors. 'Cry aloud - spare not. Lift ip thy voice like a trnuipet. Show the yeople their transtjression, and the house of Jacob their sin. Isaiah. lviii. 1. 'They that forsake the Inw p.-asie the wickcd [frame apolorrues tbr them and teil how pions they ore] but such as keep the law conlend with them.' Prov. xxviii, 4. Tmitate the Navior, who said- Woe unto you Scribss and Phariseef?, hypecrites, for ye dn-our widmo's houses, threfore shall ye receive the greaier damnation.' Mntt. x.xiii. 14. 5. Agítate the commnnily. This wns one of Nehemiah's measure?, and a successíul one. when princes and priesthood had conspired for the oppression of the poor. [See Nehemi;ih, chap. v.] I rebuked the nobles and the miera, and said unto thein, - You exact imiry, eyery onn of his brothcr. And I seta gi cal assembly' [i. e. of the common ppople,] aguinst thf-m' Verse 6. That brotight thern to their hearings - pries'hood and 11, (see verse 12,) nnd they submiUed qaietly "to the popular voice.6. 'tilde the. outcasts: betroy not bim thnt wandcrplb. Lot mine outcasts dweil with thee. Be thon a covert to.him from the face of the spoüer.' Make thy sbadow as the night in the midst of thee noon-day." Lminii xvi. S 4. 'Tho'i ehalt not deliver unto his mas'er fhe ervant thnt hatli escapad from lus mnster unto thee - he eball dweil with thee even among yon in that place which he sha)! choose, in one of thv gales, where it Ükth him besf. Thou shaJt nol opprrtss him." - Deuf. xxiü. 15 - IC. 'Be not forretful to enferTbii) stranorere, for thereby some have entertained angele unawares.' Heb. xiii. 2. IC any eaithly rulers forbkl this, remember to obey God rather than man, as-did the apostlos - as did Danie! - and aedid three Heb re w cliilflren. Fear not them that kill the body, and afterwarda have uo more that they can do.': 7. Providr for the clevation of the oppressed al home - in thet'r nntivo country nnd in yours, 'Let them dweil loith thee - even mnong yon - in that place which they sh;ill choose' - 'where it Iiketh them bpsi.' Thou slialt not ippress them, nor blaspheme Christianity by it can never elévate them in this counry! 'Bringf the poor that are cast out to ;hyselffrom thine own flesh.' Isaiah lviii. 7. Tnke away from the midst of ihee the yoke,the vanity. Jsaiah Iviii, 9, tho treating oí them fis an inferior caste - praling about 'a raulgamalion,' and drchii'mg to be 'overrun with them." Remetnber! - They aie Mhine own flesh'- for God has 'made of'one blood 11 nations'! Remember! They are the n-prespiitativeg of yonr savioi! - yonr Jm'ge! - Your treatrnent of them he regards as the treatmpnt of hhnself! 8. Treat ihnn as cquals. 'Ha'e not the fi.tlh of our Lord Jcsus Christ, the Lord of Glory, with respect to persons.' (. e. nn]'?r!ake nnt, profesa nnr to Iiold ■ thnt luitb, wlii'e alorijQf with it ye hHve reapect of prrsoní.)- LFor if there crme nnto your assembly (or chureli) a man with a grold rinr; in rooclly appare!, (or wilh a white skin,) and thero con.e in nlso a poor man wiili vile raiment, wi'li a cólorr-d ekm) and ye have respect to him that wenretli ihe gray clothing - or the wtii e skin - and gay tin! o him, Sit thou l;ere in a Loud place; and say to the poor - ihe de.spiseJ colored man - Stand thoii there, or sit liere under mv footstool: are ye not the partial in yourse'f; and are become jurlrs of pvil thoiiijhts? [i. e. judies haviig evü thouplns.] Hath not God chosen lh poor of this worid. rich in f.iith? Sec. Ent ye have Jespised the poor.' Sec James li, 1-G. 9. Wicld civil government jnU forih polidcal action in thcir favor. - L. By Legíslation. " Proclaim libertythroughoül the land to all the inhabitants thereof.' Lev. xxvi. 10. 'Thus saith the Lord, ye have not hearkened imto me in proclaiming Jiberty, every one to his brother, and every man to' hrs neighbor: behold I proclairn a libcrty for you, saith the Lord, to the sword, to the peslilence and to the faminc, and I wil! make you to be removed into all 'the kingdoms of the earth.' Jer. xxxiv. 17. Thh denunciation we see fully in the Jews to this day. All ihis for the neglect of political legislation for the oppressedí II. lhj Judicial decisiönSi 'Execute judgment.' isaiah xvi. 3. 'Execute judg-nent ia themorning' - i. é.'eárlyj immediately - and' deli'ver the spoiled out of the hand of the oppressor, lest ivïy fury go out iifce fire and burn that nono canquench it, because of the evil of your doings.' Jer. xxi. 12. 'He judged the cause of the poor and neody - then was it well with him: Was not this to know me? saith the LordJ Jer. xxii. 16. God demands whether polifical action of the oppressed be nottrue religión - the knowledge of himself- at least an important branch of it! Beware then, of a religión that makes you loo holy, in your ovn eves to discharge this duty, whcrein is wrapped up the knowlcdgc of the Lord! III. Bxj the ballot box. The way in which the great mass of the people 'proclaim liberty' and !execute judgment' is by the proper choice of thcir rulers. And henee, the Divine directions for the due discharge of that duty. 'Judges and officers shalt thou make thee in all Ihy gates, wh;c!i the Lord thy God giveth thee throughoutthy tribes, and they shall judge the people with just judgment. 'Deut. xvi. 13.. Notice, here. the obligation shalt thou make. Here is a command- a duty to be performed. 'In all thy gates' - and 'throughout thy tribes.' In the most obscure and remoie villago and hamlet, as well as the highest. All civil officers - not mercly somo of ihcm- are' thus to be chosen. And what is the test of qualification? The candidates must be such as will judge tbc people with Just judgment. And again. it is written - 'He that ruleth over men must be jyust, ruling in the fea r of God.' 2 Sam. xxiii, 3. This disqualifies all slaveholders and lesser oppressors with their apologists and supporters - all who refuse or neglect to 'execute judgment bctween a man and his neighbor. Jer. vii. 5. The support of unjust and oppressive rulers is the heinous sin - the precise sin for which all the plagues of Egypt were inflicted, the first-born destroyed, and the hosts of Pharoah overthrown in the Red Sea. These transgressoi-s were notsonalíy siaveholders for the Hobrëws vverc not chattel slaves. but the victims of political oppression, under the grand monarch of Egypt. And the people sustaincd him in his oppression. Jt was, to bo sure. a light yoke in comparison vvith American slavery- the people wcre in hoathen darkness, and did not exorcise the prerogative of choosing their own ruIers at the ballot box. Yet the public sentiment amongthem v-as doubtless ' in favor of the oppression of the' Hëbrevi's, who vére employed on works óf public improvement. In ihcir hearts, they voied for P'haroah - they helped him execute i his unrigiiteous decrecs: and for ihis the were thus,.s'gna!ly desircyed! VThai.thci must be the aggravaled condemnatioa o American citizens, vith tire Bible ant with the' ballot-box in their haiick, whe íhey vote for despois, in compr.riso vith wl-iom a Pharocih mig'it almost b mistaken for a just ruler! ff this hn gunge bc deemed extravagant, lei the rer der deliberately compare the inspired ree ords of Egyptian oppression with Ih slave codes of America and the 'testimony of a thousand witnesses' íespecting their operation.This work of 'executing judgment' i the solé province of civil governinent - the very business of the civil ruíer. 'Fui this cause pay ye tribute also, lor thej are God's ministers altending continualh upon this very thing.' 'Rulcrs are not a terror to good works, but to the e vil - 'foi be is the minister of Godj a revengcr to execute Wrath upon him that doeth evil.' Such are the authorities 'ordained of God.' And 'fhcre is no authority but of God' - no Divine warranty or sanction for any civil government that is not a -terror to evil doers' - a protector of human rtghts. See Romans xii 1-0. 10. 'Employ Churcli discipline against oppressons. '! have written unto you not to keep company, a man that is calleda brotnèr be a fornicaíor, or covetous, or an idolator, or a ruler, oran rxtortioner, with such an one, no - not to ent.' 'Thcrefore put oway from among yourselves that v.iched person.' 1 Col. Fv. ii, 13. ís not theslaveholder covetous? ís hc not nn extortioner? Are not these terms tooweak andfeeble to describe íhe manifold and nggravated guilt of the slaveholder? The law is made for raanstealers.' 1 Tim. i. 10. The crime, by thé Mosaic code, was punished with death, (Ex. xxi. 16.) and is it not a proper occasion of discipline in the Christíán Church? 11. WüJidrato vicvibership andfelloicship frtnn pro-slavery and prctendvd neutral churches, unless tliey can bc reformed. This is, iri substance, the same duty with thatof church discipline, and is required on the same grounds. 'Have no fellowship with thefruitful works ofdarkness, buj rather reprpve tlxcm.' Eph. v. 11. 'Come out of her, my people that ye partake not of her sins, and that ye J would thou wert cold orhot,' Êec, See Rcv. iii. 16- 16Vreceive not of her plagues.' Rev. xviii. 4. This is said of a comipt church, and is comraonly applied by Protestants to the Church of Rome. Thomas Scott, the commentator, in remarking upon this test says: 'This summons concerns all persons in every age: they who believe in Christ eind' worship God in the Spirit should separate from so corrupt a church, and from all OTHERS that Söpy her example of idolatry, persecution, CRUELTY and TYRANNY. and avoid bclng partakers of her sins, even i f they have renonnced hereómmunion, or else they mdy expecí tobo invól ved in her plagues.' And again: The vengeance of heaven is coming upon Rome, not for gestures, garbs and ceremonies, though multiplied and of bad consequences in themsolves, but for idolntry. ambition, OPPRESSION, CRUELTY to the people of God, imposturö, ÁV-' A.R1CE, LICENTIOUSNESS, and sPirual TYRANY. Theso are the sins which havo reached to the heavens, the iniquities which God remembers and the evils for which we must STAND ÁLOOF from her communion, and that of ALL OTHERS that RESEMBLE her, or we shali be involved in their destruction.' Christian reader! Ponder again the atrocities of American Slavery. Look at the apathy of the churches - nay, at the prejudice and opposition that bars out, to so great an extent, the consideration of the subject. Thcn, hear the testiraony of a slaveholding minisier, in the act of defending the sïave system. He says- 'If slavery be a sin, and advertising and apprehending slaves, with a view to restore them to their masters, is a direct violaüon of the divine law; and if: the BUYING, SELL1NG, or HOLDING a slave; FOR THE SAKE OF GAIN, is a heinous sin and scandal, thea veiïly,TJIREE FOLirrnS OF ALL THE EpiSCOPALIAXS. MlLTUODISTS, BaptiSTS AXJU Pp.ESBYTERIAKS IN ELEVEN StATES OP THE Umox, are of the devi], They hola. if thcy do not buy and se]] slaves; and. v:th few exccptions, they Lesitatö not io apprehcnd and restore runaway slaves. when in their power."- R cv. James Smylie, A. M. of the Amite Presbytery. Mississippi. And vrith these, three-fourtlisofallthe EpiscopaHans, Metiiodists, Baptists, Presbyterians," and Congregationaüsts, in the non-slaveholding Stat&s, are in close and fraternal fellowship and connexion, with-" oui uttering a word of remonstraDce or entreatv against slavcry- nay, for the most part ftarajng apoJogies for the prac-' tice: Tiieologicnl Seminaries where ths B.ible right oí' s]aveholdii3g is vindicated; voting for slavehoJders, and pro-skivery law-makers; turniAg, to a great extcnt, a dcaf ear to the subject, snutting it out of the churches:the negro pew; joining wifh oppressors in measurcs for sending the gospel of Christ, (or good tidings for the poor) to the dkiant hcathen: deprccating the ag.ct-: ation of the slave question, lest it should 'disturb the peace of the churches,' and dcnouncing tJie schism' of breakïng up church relations oa so trivial an occasion as that of holding the imago of God in the condition of chattelship; forbidding thé Eiblc. and bloüing out the institution ot piarriage! You sec then, brcthren, the nature of the abotnination to be removed, the divinelyappointed 'raeasures' for removihg t, and the pressing' occasion and cali for jrompt, efiicient and decisivo action. - Wlïaisoever thy hand findiiig todo, do it vifh all thy mig-ht, for there is no work, lor device, nor knowlodge, ör wisdom, in hé grave whither thou goesi."


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