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I put all these cases to Dr. Slowe, who I regret on his account to say, has uttered sentiments which brother Rice can quote in support of his doctrine, that the apostolic churches fellowshipped slave-holding: and Dr. Stowe unhesitatingly declared, that in every such case, the claims of slave-holders were extinguished by the law of the church (which, was the law of Christ) in favor of husband and parent.
How then do he and others reach the conclusion, totally inconsistent with this admission, that slave-holding was admitted to fellowship in the apostolic churches?
Why, in this way :-They say that the legal relation, as created by the civil law, still vested in slave-owners, after they became members of the Christian churches; and that they were not required to abjure this relation before they were received into the church. Supposing this true, it does not alter the case. For, as the cases cited above show, they could not retain their slaves by the law of Christianity; and saying that the rights of slave-owners still remained in them by the civil law ; is subjecting the Christian church to the heathen State. But if the law of Christ was superior to that civil law which gave them their slave-holding rights, then they ceased to be slave-holders when they joined the church.
More than this: The first Christian who should have gone to a civil court to prosecute his claim to the body of his brother or sister as his slave, would have had an excommunication launched after him, under the injunction of the apostle, as a most aggravated case of “brother going to law with brother, and that before unbelievers." Those civil courts were among the things which Christians came out of, when they left the world to follow Christ. They could not prosecute claims there without practising idolatry. Justice was administered by these in the name of Jupiter, and the emperor, and attended with pagan rites. The witness took a flint, and, jerking it from his hand, said—“So let Jupiter thrust me from among the good, if 1 deceive in this case.”' Thus a Christian could not have established his claim to a
slave, in the civil courts, without subjecting the church to the State-violating the apostle's injunction—and practising idolatry.
Thus, I have proved, that slave-holding was not allowed in the New Testament church:-1. By the constitution of Christianity; 2. The character of the members; 3. By the history of the foundation of the first Christian community; and, 4. By the discipline of the church.
And now-Gentlemen and fellow-citizens--with many and sincere thanks for your long and patient attention, during this debate, (having no time to recapitulate,) I bid you an affectionate farewell. And I pray God, that when you
shall have well considered the arguments here presented, and when
shall read them in the book which is to be published, you may be led by His Spirit to “Remember them thai are in bonds as bound with them"-so that when shall appear before the final bar you may yourselves hear with joy the welcome of the judge: not (according to the shocking interpretation of my brother) of " well done, thou good and faithful slave,”—but that welcome, fit for Christ's lips to utter, and saved men to hear, “ Well done, good and faithful SERVANT—enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” For me,
I know that when a few days are come, a thousand miles shall stretch between your dwellings and mineand when, hereafter, this toil-worn frame shall be sinking to its last earthly rest, it shall please my failing memory to remember, that my last effort among you was in vindication of the oppressed. Happy, if, when
my raise my dying head, like Wolf upon the Heights of Abraham, and hear the gathering shout of my countrymen, that the enemies of freedom and God's truth are routed, and the slave is free; and when my weary head shall at last lie low amid the wild flowers of yonder prairie, my fuiure home, it shall content me well, if they shed their dewey honors above the grave of one who, having humbly striven in all things to follow his Lord, like Him, also, has becn faithful to His poor.
toils are over,
I called on my
friend to prove
[MR. RICE'S SIXTEENTH SPEECH.] Gentlemen Moderators, and Fellow-Citizens:
I do not by any means call in question the sincerity of the gentleman in his abolition sentiments; and I can sympathise with him in his zeal for a cause which he imagines to be the most important of all others. But whilst I give him due credit for his sincerity, I cannot forget, that his declamation and exhortation are not argument.
the truth of his assertion, that bondmen purchased by the Jews from the heathen, could hold property. In reply he has not once quoted the Bible, but has referred me to the Roman Catholic professor JahnYet Jahn does no where say, either that they went out of servitude at the end of six years, nor that they held property. He says only that they were numbered among the people of Is. rael. So they were, as to all church privileges. They were so ecclesiastically. But this they could be, and neither hold property nor be free. I have seen Jahn's book to which Mr. B. refers; and he expressly says the Jews had a right to buy bond-servants from the heathen.
I cannot but remark here, that one of the most unpleasant features of modern abolitionism, is its utter recklessness in relation to the characters of even the most eminent, and honored, and useful servants of Jesus Christ. I cannot hear charges the most injurious, so frequently recurring, as we have heard them from the gentleman, without being constrained to think, that there must be something in abolitionism itself, which produces in its advocates a self-sufficient, conceited spirit, that leads them to regard themselves as wiser and better than all other men.
Dr. Adam Clarke has been lauded by the gentleman, and quoted as aùthority: but the moment I shew that he confirms my exposition of the Old Testament on the subject of slavery, he is ridiculed as a “monkey commentator.” Such a man and such a scholar as Professor Stuart, of Andover, is not to be trusted in his exposition of the scriptures, we are told, because some of the young men whom he taught, are settled in the southern States !
[MR. BLANCHARD rose to explain. I said he had sons, (not students,) in slave-holding families.)
Very well: and because he has sons settled at the South in slave-holding families, he can be so influenced, so warped in judgment by that circumstance, that he has grossly perverted the Word of God, and on his responsibility as a biblical expositor, has said, that it is “ impossible to doubt that the Bible teaches a certain doctrine, which is most detestable! Is it not truly strange that a wise and good man, whose reputation is such as that of Prof. Stuart, is to be condemned, as blindly, or perversely teaching the most abominable and cruel doctrines, on grounds so trivial—and this too, by a professed minister of the gospel !
In the same manner, the American Board is to be treated. They sometimes sit at one of our watering places, where they see the face of a slave-holder; and behold! they never can see the truth again!
The eminent learning of many of them, their character for vital piety, and for wisdom and prudence, cannot shield them from the charge of sinister motives, of sacrificing the truth to the influence of slavery! Slave-holders were seen by them at the watering-places; and therefore they are blinded! And the gentleman has even ventured to denounce one of those ministers as “ an ecclesiastical Talleyrand!" I had learned from an inspired apostle, that the character of min. isters of the gospel, was to be respected, and that no charge was to be received against them, unless sustained by at least two witnesses; but abolitionism practices according to a different rule.
The Methodist church, even in the North, I have said, has never made slave-holding a bar to Christian fellowship. This statement is true. It is admitted, that the Methodists forbid trafficking in slaves; and so do I condemn it.
The gentleman, by way of proving that the Jews had no slaves, refers us to the law of Moses against man-steal
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