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could be found, it would be a blessed day for the slave, (enthusiastic applause.) The churches of Christ would cease to discuss these logomachies; for they are nothing more; and if every man in the churches of America if every minister there, would not lend himself right heartily to such a movement, I, for one, would cut the connexion with them, (loud and long-continued applause.)

MR MACBETH rose to bring forward a motion ; and insisted that the principle of non-communion with slaveholding churches in America was entitled to respect, held as it was by hundreds of intelligent men; as, for instance, by the Rev. J. A. James of Birmingham; by Thomas Clarkson ; by the committee of the British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society; and as it had been taken up by the Secession and by the Relief Synods, by the Reformed Presbyterian church, by the Wesleyan Conference, and by very many

other Christian bodies in this country, nay, and in America itself. Not that friendly intercourse should be dropped - but what in the circumstances, deserved to be called friendly intercourse? It could consist only of remonstrance, warning, and the distinct statement to the churches implicated in this sin, that no church communion, on a footing of equality, could be granted them, till they had excommunicated their slaveholding members ; and he was certain that in time this Free Church would be necessitated to act thus. Dr Candlish said it was sometimes a sin not to be a slaveholder, ("No, no.")

Dr Candlish begged to correct that statement. He never said any thing of the kind.

Me Macbeth had taken down the words at the time, and Dr Candlish certainly did say that a man might be a slaveholder without being implicated in the sin of slavery. He was sorry Dr Candlish had alluded so much to the agitation out of doors, as it was of the last importance that they should not allow themselves to be disturbed by extraneous circumstances, tending to excite indignation in many, to rouse their feelings of opposition, and to keep them from a calm judgment on the merits of the case, (loud applause.) He was wholly unconnected with that agitation, be it good or bad. Instead of being referred to, it ought to be dismissed from their recollection. He feared, however, the excitement referred to would prejudice materially his position with this house. At this moment the Free Church is the only church in Britain that has distinctly refused to say that man can never, without sin, hold property in man; and that to do so is in itself, in every instance, a great crime on the part of the perpetrator, (“ hear, hear,” from some of the auditors.) Here lies the point at issue. You condemn the system, for which you deserve all credit ; but refuse to add_and slaveholding, per se, is necessarily a great crime on the slaveholder's part, in every instance where he commits it.”. Thus Dr Candlish had just said—“ It is to be inquired, when a slaveholder presents himself for church privileges, whether he be implicated in the sin of slaveholding. Wherever there is şlaveholding there is sin somewhere, but not necessarily on the part of the slaveholder." Then Dr Chalmers said, “ Let your discipline deal, not with slaveholding, but with its fruits. Exclude from ordinances, not any man as a slaveholder, but every man, whether slaveholder or not, as licentious, as intemperate, as dishonest.” The American churches, which are seeking to


excuse their unblushing practice of this thing, be it known, occupy exactly this ground,—having no hesitation in condemning the system, but denying, just as you do, that slaveholding, in itself, is a great crime to the slaveholder. They find it the convenient position for their purpose, and, indeed, no parties need any thing more. At this moment, the Free Church alone, among the British churches, has formally, in her court of highest appeal, proclaimed this denial of the inherent and necessary sinfulness to the pos. sessor of holding a human being in possession, in the relation to you of slave. Let us search the Scriptures as to this. The original grant is twice repeated, under which man's rights of property are defined and limited, in Gen. l. 28, ix. 1-7 (but these contain no clause giving man right to hold his brother in possession); and in the Shorter Catechism, among the reasons annexed to the Second Commandment is, “ God's property in us.” That is, to hold property in man as a divine prerogative. With a divine warrant, slaveholding would be right; without a divine warrant, slaveholding must involve theft, sacrilege on a living temple, where the slave is converted, and blasphemy, in the assumption of a divine prerogative. In every instance, therefore, the burden of proof lies with those who deny the essential sinful. ness of slaveholding,—it lies with them to bring from Scripture a distinct divine warrant, bearing on the case. Dividing human history into three periods, under the first--the patriarchial period—no such warrant can it be found ; nor even can it be shown that Abraham held slaves. Obed, the Hebrew word, is used to designate Adam's free tillage of paradise ; and, in Deut. xxviii. 39, is used of the freeman's cultivation of his vineyard; while Eleazer of Damascus was manifestly no slave, designed as he was to be his master's heir, and hailed by Rebecca as Lord. Under the theocracy, let magistratic inflictions for crime be put out of the question, and it was to be granted the Hebrews had a divine warrant; but the theocratic period was past—while even then, every six years the slave had an offer of his liberty. A warrant to the Hebrews, however, did not give any warrant to men nowa-days. We come to the apostles, then. I defy any man to bring forward so much as a single text, showing an apostle admitting a slaveholder to membership in the church, or to the Lord's table. You will get texts exhorting servants under the yoke to be quiet and orderly under wrong ; but the extremest abolition party in America are continually addressing similar exhortations to the slaves.

You will get passages, too, in which apostles call masters brethren ; but to admit of a slaveholder that he is a brother, is only to grant that he is converted—and a man might be converted, yet be kept from communion. The challenge was, to bring forward a single text, clear and precise, declaring, or clearly implying, that the apostles ever admitted a slaveholder to church membership, or to the Lord's table. This text will not be forthcoming. This much generally; but more particularly doulos often meant slave; it just as often, in the New Testament and in the Septuagint, held a much milder sense and higher; John xv. 15; Rom. vi. 16; Ist Cor. vii. 23 ; Gal. iv. 7 ; Mat. xviii, 23, 26-xxii. 3, 4; and as Adam Clarke has said, “though doulos frequently signifies a slave or bondman, yet it often implies a servant in general, or any one bound to another, either for a limited period or for life." Then kurios is never equivalent to slaveholder ; and so the compound expression kurios kai doulos, where doulos must be more or less affected by its correlate kurios, could not possibly signify “slaveholder and şlave,” and none of the translators into English have so rendered it; nor

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Luther, Diodati, nor the French versions, but by “niaster and servant." As to the letter to Philemon, no more could be proven than this, that Onesimus was a servant who had defrauded his master and fled that Paul sent him back, exhorting Philemon to treat him as more than a servant," -Paul doing this with his usual delicacy, that Philemon might have all the credit of the transaction in forgiving the delinquent. The letter was a manifesto of liberty, and no sanction for slaveholding, (applause.) It will never be shown that the apostle had given the divine warrant for property in man, without which it is, per se; theft of the worst kind, demanding ercoinmunication. If men had such warrant, who had a right to repeal itwho had a right to pretend to be more generous than God? And therefore if the apostles had given such warrant, all abolition attempts, however gradual, were presumptuous. To this verbal argument might be added, the spirit of Christianity; the Bible denunciations of man-stealing, and of all wrongs; the impossibility of carrying out to coloured people the Presbyterian church government, which would give them rights that as slaves they could not exercise. And thus it does seem contradictory, to leave an Erastian church at home and to proclaim non-communion against it, and the next day refuse to do so, with churches far more Erastian, in America ; bowing, as these churches did, to the regulations, as to their slave-members, of the coarse Erastian “laws of the land” of the slave states, (applause.) Let Dr Candlish move, as he had done in the Evangelical Alliance. He had brought forward a motion there, to exclude slaveholders from that alliance - which admitted Erastians; but here, he is for excluding Erastians and admitting them. Mr Macbeth proceeded to argue that Dr A. Thomson held all slaveholding a crime of the deepest die—that the American system was peculiarly atrocious—that the churches were completely implicated in it; and threw out the hint that the £3000 received from these churches should be sent back for the beloof of the runaway slaves, above ten thousand of whom had already fled across the Canadian frontier. Mr Macbeth then read the following quotation from Dr A. Thomson:-“ But the case is very different, indeed, when man takes it upon him without any divine commission, and without any warrant from the necessity of executing laws against transgressors, to deprive his brethren of their liberty, and compel them to be his bondmen ; he encroaches upon, he takes away what belongs to another, and what he has no right to encroach upon or take away. He assumes the prerogative of God, he deals with God's independent creatures as if they were

He steals his neighbour's goods and property; he violates what the will of heaven has made sacred; he gratifies his own ambition, his own caprice, his own avarice, at the expense of those over whom he possesses no legitimate control. He introduces a system, pregnant, even in its simplest form, and when unguarded by a special interposition of Providence, with all sorts of oppression and misery. And he acts upon a principle which implies the right to do wrong, of whose operation he himself may become the victim whenever superior power is pleased to pounce upon him, and which, if acted upon generally, as it may, if it be inherently righteous, would secure the mastery over this world's affairs to the worst and basest passions of the human heart. This is the slavery to which we ascribe the character of sin. It is sinful in its origin, and sinful in its continuance, and sinful in its effects, and sinful eternally. This is not the slavery of the Old Testament, for that was ordained of God, whose right to ordain it was supreme and unquestionable. This is a slavery which law-breaking, God-daring, ignorant or merci

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less men have presumed to practise and have found advocates to defend. This is a slavery which God has permitted to exist, as he has permitted Satan to exist, but has never, no, never, sanctioned—which he has rebuked and condemned, but not regulated— which may experience the patience and longsuffering of his mercy, but which raises to him the cry of injustice and of blood, and must sooner or later be visited with his avenging wrath.” Mr Macbeth concluded by moving the following motion : _ “ That whereas slavery is an accursed system, and the system of slavery in the slave states of America is peculiarly atrocious; and whereas to hold a human being in slavery, without an express divine warrant for so doing, is necessarily in itself a great crime on the part of the individual who commits it ; and as the American churches had long ago attained to much light on this subject ; and as this Free Church, and many other churches, have more than once remonstrated with some of these American churches; this Assembly hereby resolves that this church cannot admit to its pulpits, or to the comm



individual in the United States by whom slavery is practised, nor can receive deputations from any church which does not visit slaveholding members with excommunication; and this resolution this church adopts in the spirit of love towards the churches which are implicated in this sin.”

Dr Duncan said-Moderator, in saying a few words on this question, I beg, at the outset, to give my hearty concurrence to what was

so well brought forward by Dr Candlish. I think, sir, no desires of our own to settle any general questions which may incidentally arise in the discussion of this subject, should be allowed to stand in the way of the emancipation of the race; and that the friends of freedom, who take such a course, make the interests of others subservient to their own views, (applause.) This line of procedure, indeed, has only a tendency to divert our minds from the great and main object, and to give rise to division, separation, and faction; while parties contend rather for victory to their own views, than concentrate their energies for the attainment of the great end to be desired. I believe there are three questions intimately connected with this question, but yet distinct. The first is, the system of slavery itself; the second is, the duty of Christian men, and of Christian churches, where slavery exists, in regard to it; and the third is, the duty of other Christian men, and other Christian churches, in regard to those other churches where slavery exists. The last is the question we have immediately to do with. The American churches cannot abolish slavery, nor can we. Our business, therefore, is to do all in regard to them whicli, in the providence of God, we are enabled to do. Our duty is to stimulate and encourage them in doing their duty, and thus we occupy the only sphere of action which is competent to us—thrusting them forward. It is our duty to do so-stimulating them, to the utmost of our power, to do all that it belongs for them to do in regard to this matter, both in keeping themselves from guilt, and in striving to accomplish the great end of the repeal of those laws which sanction and perpetuate the continuance of slavery. Now, we are far more favourably situated for doing something effectually, as well as dutifully, for the accomplishment of this object, by continuing our amicable relations with the Presbyterian churches of America, than if, with our own hands, we were at once to sever these relations. This is exactly the positiou of extreme abolitionists in America ; and if we were to assume the same position, I dɔ not know that they care so much for us that it would have any extensive influence upon them; and they

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would likely tell you that if you can do without them, they can do without you. I do not think we can do more than remonstrate, until we find them absolutely deaf to our remonstrances. No doubt but we find a very low state of feeling among some of the professing Christians of America on the subject of slavery-no doubt but we find others have manifested much indifference on the subject ; but I do not think, notwithstanding all this, that our time for remonstrating is yet come to an end. We ought, perhaps, in doing so, to be more explicit and more firm ; but yet in the precise state of the question at present, we must be well assured that the whole of our power in this way has been exhausted before we take the ultimate step of saying, we have tried every thing, and all things have failed. Something may be done then by the Free Church. The providence of God has put us into a position where we may have good hopes of influencing powerfully the churches in America to their duty, if they be zealous to learn, and as zealous to do; but if they are obstinate, and continue to be deaf to our remonstrances, no doubt the time may come, when all things having been tried, and tried unsuccessfully, we may be forced to say, “ We have tried it, and tried it again-we have found it our duty to exhaust all the means in our power; but this having been done, we can do no more, and we must now quit the connexion,” (applause) I assure you, sir, I do not think we should continue to remonstrate with them always. We may be necessitated to to throw them off

“Cuncta prius tentanda, sed immedicabile vulnus
Ense recidendum est."

But, by the blessing of God on our efforts, I trust that necessity never will come, (great applause.) As for the question of slaveholding, or rather slave-having, I certainly was once in a position where I needed Mr Macbeth's arguments, and was also aware of them, and of some more on the same ground; but I did not use them, because I felt that I would be ashamed to use them. In looking at the whole complexity of the words and modes of expression, and the state of society among different nations of antiquity, I am not prepared to say that the Hebrew word eved, or the Greek doulos, meant precisely slave in the modern sense of the word; but neither did they imply servant in the modern sense ; and they were more cognate to the word slave than to servant. With regard to the word kurios, its connexion with doulos can never alter the ordinary meaning of the latter. But in dealing with the argument we have just listened to, I think any further remarks on this subject superfluous, since, as far as there is force in it, it is conceded-adopted. The sentiments contained in the speech of Dr Candlish, which will be afterwards embodied in a written document, and become, as I anticipate, the deliverance of the Assembly, declare virtually that slave-holding, as contra-distinguished from slave-having, is sinful, (hear, hear.) There is no question about the sinfulness of slaveholding, por about its horrible enormity. There is no question but that it is the duty of every man, in every church, who has himself been emancipated by the blood of Christ, to do all in his power to have the great contamination swept away for ever from the face of the earth, (applause.) We may reasonably hope, from all that we have heard of the Christian character of our American brethren, as manifested in other ways, that, when their duty in this respect is firmly, though mildly, pointed out to them, and enforced by those

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