Slavery is one of many social institutions that were once considered normal but go against our modern thinking. Other areas that we think different are such things as the status of women, rigid classes, and being subjects instead of citizens. Ideas such as the principle of primogeniture and sumptuary laws seem like foreign languages to us. Much of the change is due to subtle but sure changes brought about by the growing influence of the Bible on the thinking of the world.
You may have notice that the KJV has “servant” rather than “slave” (5650). Historically the words were often interchangeable. In our modern thinking they are too distinct relationships. That is because we have seen saturated with centuries of Biblical thinking that reflects the thinking of Paul,
(Galatians 3:28 KJV) There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.I don’t think the early church understood how revolutionary this would become. The point I want to make today is that we are not to serve the Lord as a “slave” (5650) in the punitive sense but instead in the status of love slave or servant.
One reason why slave cultures are overcome by free cultures is that it is to a free man’s advantage when he “understands” (995). A slave gains nothing by the profit of his master. A free man improves his lot when he benefits his employer.
So? As you follow Jesus remember that you are a love slave, not an enslaved prisoner of war. Serve with joy, with your mind turned on. Today you may see something that would have passed you by if you were running on automatic.