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eight bits

A slave bible

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eight bits
Posted (edited)

The Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC is a curious institution, sometimes associated with dodgy trade in antiquities and conservative Christian evangelical fervor. Nevertheless, a current exhibit is of genuine interest beyond the God Squad.

The center of the exhibit is one of three surviving copies of a 19th Century missionary bible targeted for Caribbean slaves. The book, which is owned by Fisk University, a historically African-American school in Nashville, has been on loan to the museum since it opened a few years ago. In that time, interest in the book has quietly grown. The exhibit itself has been slowly attracting attention, first in social media, then picked up last month by the Times of Israel, and very recently, receiving US national mainstream media coverage.

The book is an abridgment of the canonical bible (none of that "Let me people go" nonsense), emphasizing slavery-friendly passages (such as pseudo-Paul's helpful advice to slaves on obeying their masters). It is interesting that the missionaries leave out 90% of the Hebrew Bible and 50% of the New Testament. I hesitate to conclude that those figures reflect how much of the bible is anti-slavery - I suspect abridgment for brevity's sake as well as ideology.

Anyway, here's the museum's page on the exhibit:

https://www.museumofthebible.org/exhibits/slave-bible

and this is the first of five short promotional clips hosted on YouTube:

 

 

Edited by eight bits
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Hammerclaw

 

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Sherapy
Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, eight bits said:

The Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC is a curious institution, sometimes associated with dodgy trade in antiquities and conservative Christian evangelical fervor. Nevertheless, a current exhibit is of genuine interest beyond the God Squad.

The center of the exhibit is one of three surviving copies of a 19th Century missionary bible targeted for Caribbean slaves. The book, which is owned by Fisk University, a historically African-American school in Nashville, has been on loan to the museum since it opened a few years ago. In that time, interest in the book has quietly grown. The exhibit itself has been slowly attracting attention, first in social media, then picked up last month by the Times of Israel, and very recently, receiving US national mainstream media coverage.

The book is an abridgment of the canonical bible (none of that "Let me people go" nonsense), emphasizing slavery-friendly passages (such as pseudo-Paul's helpful advice to slaves on obeying their masters). It is interesting that the missionaries leave out 90% of the Hebrew Bible and 50% of the New Testament. I hesitate to conclude that those figures reflect how much of the bible is anti-slavery - I suspect abridgment for brevity's sake as well as ideology.

Anyway, here's the museum's page on the exhibit:

https://www.museumofthebible.org/exhibits/slave-bible

and this is the first of five short promotional clips hosted on YouTube:

 

 

Very interesting, how often the Bible has been used to shape evil. 

https://docsouth.unc.edu/church/bourne/bourne.html

Here is an interesting argument for anti slavery and the Bible. 

 

Edited by Sherapy
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danydandan
5 minutes ago, Sherapy said:

Very interesting, how often the Bible has been used to shape evil. 

 

 

Maybe it was also shaped by evil?

@eight bits thanks for sharing that's incredibly interesting. Are you going to see the exhibition yourself?

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Sherapy
Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, danydandan said:

Maybe it was also shaped by evil?

@eight bits thanks for sharing that's incredibly interesting. Are you going to see the exhibition yourself?

Indeed, I think this is valid. 

 

Edited by Sherapy

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Golden Duck
12 hours ago, eight bits said:

The Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC is a curious institution, sometimes associated with dodgy trade in antiquities and conservative Christian evangelical fervor. Nevertheless, a current exhibit is of genuine interest beyond the God Squad.

The center of the exhibit is one of three surviving copies of a 19th Century missionary bible targeted for Caribbean slaves. The book, which is owned by Fisk University, a historically African-American school in Nashville, has been on loan to the museum since it opened a few years ago. In that time, interest in the book has quietly grown. The exhibit itself has been slowly attracting attention, first in social media, then picked up last month by the Times of Israel, and very recently, receiving US national mainstream media coverage.

The book is an abridgment of the canonical bible (none of that "Let me people go" nonsense), emphasizing slavery-friendly passages (such as pseudo-Paul's helpful advice to slaves on obeying their masters). It is interesting that the missionaries leave out 90% of the Hebrew Bible and 50% of the New Testament. I hesitate to conclude that those figures reflect how much of the bible is anti-slavery - I suspect abridgment for brevity's sake as well as ideology.

Anyway, here's the museum's page on the exhibit:

https://www.museumofthebible.org/exhibits/slave-bible

and this is the first of five short promotional clips hosted on YouTube:

 

 

Not slavery - Needs Based Development.

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Podo

This exhibition would be very interesting to see. Amazing how religion is so consistently used for abject evil.

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eight bits
Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, danydandan said:

Are you going to see the exhibition yourself?

I might. Washington is about 800 km away.,I don't have a visit on the calendar just now; but we'll see. I'd like to.

As to the evil side of all this, apparently, the motives of the missionary society were "mixed." On the one hand, the leadership was abolitionist, Bishop Beilby Porteous for example, but also skeptical that slaves could be freed practically and humanely without advance preparation and education (and baptism, of course). Plus, in the meantime, the missionaries needed the owners' cooperation to get access to the slaves, so the pro-slavery slant of the teaching materials was probably as much to placate the slave owners as manipulate the slaves.

The Haitian revolution was right around 1800, which scared the British Caribbean slave holders.That must have been a factor in the missionary plan, too, to sell their mission to the owners as a pacification measure. Whatever the missionaries were telling themselves about preparing the slaves for eventual abolition, it really was also pacification.

What a mess.

 

 

Edited by eight bits
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Stubbly_Dooright

Well, I wouldn't be able to know the difference myself, since I have never read the bible, any bible all the way through. But, for all I hear of some who are bible believing followers, (and I assume it's all parts of it), is it really honest of them to show only parts of it, for their own gain? Kind of like I observe how some like to cherry pick the bible to fit what they want to see in others. *shrugs* 

As I have reflected, I feel it's so dishonest of them, how can they think they are being true bible believers? (Of course, enslaving others, is not exactly loving your neighbors :no: ) 

But, I feel 8bits is correct in pointing out this bit of history, that shows how anything can be .................... shaped to fit their own gains. 

If, I'm getting this right. 

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eight bits
11 hours ago, Stubbly_Dooright said:

is it really honest of them to show only parts of it, for their own gain? Kind of like I observe how some like to cherry pick the bible to fit what they want to see in others. *shrugs* 

It's not unusual to compile partial bibles (just Torah, just the New Testament, ..., selections for various occasions or situations, and from the beginning, the "lectionary," selections for reading in the church itself as part of the services on selected days).

And as you say, lots of people have no trouble finding plenty of scriptural support for whatever they want to do, slave owners among them.

Still, the mind boggles (mine does anyway) at a sincerely well-intended scriptural obedience manual for slaves.

People are the craziest animals.

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