Jesus. The man who robs me of my earnings at
the end of each week meets me as a class-leader on
Sunday morning, to show me the way of life, and the
path of salvation. He who sells my sister, for
purposes of prostitution, stands forth as the pious
advocate of purity. He who proclaims it a religious
duty to read the Bible denies me the right of learning
to read the name of the God who made me. He who
is the religious advocate of marriage robs whole millions
of its sacred influence, and leaves them to the ravages
of wholesale pollution. The warm defender of
the sacredness of the family relation is the same
that scatters whole families,—sundering
husbands and wives, parents and children, sisters
and brothers,—leaving the hut vacant, and
the hearth desolate. We see the thief preaching
against theft, and the adulterer against adultery.
We have men sold to build churches, women sold to
support the gospel, and babes sold to purchase Bibles
for the POOR HEATHEN! ALL FOR THE GLORY OF GOD
AND THE GOOD OF SOULS! The slave auctioneer’s
bell and the church-going bell chime in with each
other, and the bitter cries of the heart-broken slave
are drowned in the religious shouts of his pious master.
Revivals of religion and revivals in the slave-trade
go hand in hand together. The slave prison and
the church stand near each other. The clanking
of fetters and the rattling of chains in the prison,
and the pious psalm and solemn prayer in the church,
may be heard at the same time. The dealers in
the bodies and souls of men erect their stand in the
presence of the pulpit, and they mutually help each
other. The dealer gives his blood-stained gold
to support the pulpit, and the pulpit, in return,
covers his infernal business with the garb of Christianity.
Here we have religion and robbery the allies of each
other—devils dressed in angels’ robes,
and hell presenting the semblance of paradise.
“Just God! and
these are they,
Who minister at thine
altar, God of right!
Men who their hands,
with prayer and blessing, lay
On Israel’s ark
and kidnap men?
Give thanks, and rob
thy own afflicted poor?
Talk of thy glorious
liberty, and then
Bolt hard the captive’s
of thy own
Merciful Son, who came
to seek and save
The homeless and the
outcast, fettering down
The tasked and plundered
“Pilate and Herod
Chief priests and rulers,
as of old, combine!
Just God and holy! is
that church which lends
Strength to the spoiler