The 'Slave Bible'


Missionaries to the Caribbean printed a special edition of the Bible in 1794 to use in converting African slaves to Christianity -- but omitted any parts about freedom, equality, or resistance.
     National Public Radio first reported about the "Slave Bible" in early December 2018. I wish I'd known about it for the Esteban book's sections on African slavery. The much-abridged version is titled Parts of the Holy Bible, Selected for Use of the Negro Slaves, in the British West-India Islands. It left out 90 percent of the Old Testament and 50 percent of the New Testament. 
    Although eliminating any passage critical of slavery, the Slave Bible does include passages thought necessary for controlling slaves, such as Ephesians 6:5, which says, "Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters, according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of heart, as unto Christ."
     One of the few existing copies of the Slave Bible is owned by Fisk University in Nashville, Tenn., and the only other known copies are in England.

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