Wheaton College founder, Jonathan Blanchard, was stoned in the streets for speaking out against slavery. He was a pastor and college president, still he joined to help freedom fighters abolish that brutal system, believing slavery was inconsistent with biblical teaching. He insisted God’s image in man would never support the cruel way slaveholders tortured African Americans. He used Wheaton College as one of the stops on the Underground Railroad. Slave masters justified slavery by using Noah’s curse of Ham found in Genesis 9. By twisting this text they forced slaves to work the cotton and tobacco fields. It’s true the Apostle Paul in Ephesians 6 told Christian slaves to obey their masters. He did so because poor people had no unemployment compensation and often sold themselves to pay off debts. But the apostle insisted slave masters must accept and treat slaves with respect as brothers, an attitude totally ignored by southern slave masters. Rather, they inflicted injustice and brutality in various forms for 400 years. Sadly, much of it with the approval of the Christian Church. Today, true Christ-followers do not remain silent when any ethnic group is treated unjustly.
Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr. is the founder and chairman of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.). Under his direction, UMI has grown to be a leading publisher of Christian education resources for churches in the African American community. Read More