The New Testament and Slavery: Approaches and Implications


Evangelical Christians in the nineteenth century led the campaign for the abolition of the slave trade, and then of slavery, throughout the British Empire. Yet their opponents argued that the Bible itself supports the institution of slavery. How can one book be used to uphold two contradictory positions?


In this Latimer Study, Mark Meynell examines the conundrum. Why did the apostle Paul not campaign for the abolition of slavery in his day? What did he really teach on the subject? Was slavery in the ancient world different from modern slavery, like the horrors of the American Deep South?

In particular this study focuses upon the problem of the New Testament ‘household codes’.


How can Paul command slaves to obey their earthly masters, and also proclaim that in Christ Jesus there is ‘neither slave nor free’? Christians today rightly reject slavery, so should we also campaign against another aspect of the ‘household codes’ - the submission of wives to husbands? And what about the liberation of the victims of homophobia?

  • Author

    Mark Meynell

  • Info

    ISBN: 978 0 946307 59 3

    40 pages

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© 2018 by The Latimer Trust. Registered Charity Number: 1084337

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