Thomas Bacon’s Sermon to Negro Slaves, 1743

Thomas Bacon’s Sermon to Negro Slaves, 1743

  • “Knowing, that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.” [Ephesians 6:8]
  • Last time we were together, I told you that God made you & all the world around you.
    • God created you in your station & rank in the world. Some are made kings & some are made workers & unfortunately, some are made slaves.
    • We are all bound to perform the roles of our stations in life we’ve been placed in by God. That is the role of the Christian in today’s life.
    • Our roles will not be this way forever. Our ultimate fate in the next life will depend on how we behave in this life. If we fulfill our duties in this world, we will go to heaven. If we rebel from our duties, we will not go to heaven.
  • Our love for God should be of the highest importance. If we withhold our love from God, he will withhold his love from us – the worst outcome possible.
    • If you love God sincerely, you would be afraid of doing anything bad. God can destroy our bodies & our souls at any time for violating his will.
    • You ought to worship God publicly & privately – by coming to Church as often as you can & by praying at home in thanks to him for all that you have in life.
    • Do your best to keep from getting on his bad side.
  • You have to behave toward your masters & mistresses in a way that would be pleasing to God. He expects them to behave in a way proper to his will according to their station in life & he expects you to do the same in your station.
    • You have to be faithful & honest to them – no stealing, no running away, no petulance, no disrespect, no grumbling, etc.
  • Suppose that the shoe was on the other foot & you had control over servants.
    • Would you want them to be faithful & honest to you? Once your back was turned to them would you want to be afraid of what they might do to you?
    • But more importantly, how would you behave to become a better servant of God?
    • We owe our masters & our servants the same care & consideration as we do our neighbors because in the grand scheme of things, they are our neighbors.
  • Your fellow slaves are more likely to be seen as your brethren
    • You have the same complexion, the same station, you inter-marry
    • As poor & ignorant as you are, you still have the capacity to do good. You can behave as brothers & sisters, & be decent to one another.
    • If you were only capable of terrible behavior – idleness, drunkenness, thieving, swearing, etc. – you’d be beyond any hope of redemption.
      • But you are not. You have the capacity for goodness within your own souls, your own families, your relationships amongst the slave class & with respect to your masters.
    • In order to maintain your position in the eyes of the lord you must behave well & you must behave well to your families & your masters.

Author: knowit68

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