The following image on Facebook started a conversation between me and a good fellow who happens to be both a preacher and married to my niece. I am not including his part, but I think my points stand alone.
my original post:
· as a white guy, i think this is a VERY valid point…. i have always thought it was a little hard to see why the Bible didnt take a stand, but not having the black experience, i never thought it all the way through, but i gotta say seeing it here, i have to agree….
if you think its wrong, ‘splain it to me
By some folks, who are actually paying attention, slavery is worse today, worldwide than it was in 1860… but to say the Bible didnt take a stand against slavery because it was an accepted norm is not acceptable.
What if Jesus had never spoke against all the other evil accepted norms of the day? What would have been his purpose? Why did he not say, as he did of divorce, Moses allowed slavery because he knew the hardness of your hearts, but God made all men to be equal, and to keep another in bondage is an abomination unto God!?
What happened to those verses? Did He never say that, or did the powerful people who controlled the church from say 100 AD thru today have an agenda and needed to delete it?
Either way, it means the Bible (and any other “Holy Text” that does not draw a strong line on the matter of owning another person) is not THE Word of God. It may be great, in as far as it goes, but not addressing the sin of slavery pretty much poisons the clean water of the other truths therein.
(upon noting that the age of the Bible was not constructed hundreds odf years after the crucifixtion, and also noting that even the U.S. constitution did not contemplate a world without slavery.)
As for the U.S. Constitution, it was very much understood that the document was flawed, and many of those behind it were opposed to slavery, but then again, it was modified, it is not supposed to be the divine word of God. If Christians allowed that the bible should be amended, like the constitution, then maybe it would be a better comparison
As far as the age of the Bible, the gospels and Paul’s writings occurred in the first century, by tradition, though no copies of work from that era survives. The bible was basically composed and edited from a great collection of Christian writings about 200 yrs after the death of Jesus. Hard copies of the Gospel of Thomas predate any documents of the rest of the New Testament, but it did not fit the narrative, so it was tossed, as were many other writings.
The oldest surviving complete Christian Bibles are Greek manuscripts from the 4th century. The oldest Tanakh manuscript in Hebrew and Aramaic dates to the 10th century CE, but an early 4th-century Septuagint translation is found in the Codex Vaticanus.
The Bible was divided into chapters in the 13th century by Stephen Langton and into verses in the 16th century by French printer Robert Estienne and is now usually cited by book, chapter, and verse.
Development of the Christian canons
The Old Testament canon entered into Christian use in the Greek Septuagint translations and original books, and their differing lists of texts. In addition to the Septuagint, Christianity subsequently added various writings that would become the New Testament. Somewhat different lists of accepted works continued to develop in antiquity. In the 4th century a series of synods produced a list of texts equal to the 39, 46(51),54, or 57 book canon of the Old Testament and to the 27-book canon of the New Testament that would be subsequently used to today, most notably the Synod of Hippo in AD 393. Also c. 400, Jerome produced a definitive Latin edition of the Bible (see Vulgate), the canon of which, at the insistence of the Pope, was in accord with the earlier Synods. With the benefit of hindsight it can be said that this process effectively set the New Testament canon, although there are examples of other canonical lists in use after this time. A definitive list did not come from an Ecumenical Council until the Council of Trent (1545–63).