THE Negro Christianized.

An ESSAY TO EXCITE and ASSIST that GOOD WORK, The INSTRUCTION OF Negro-Servants IN Christianity.

Josh. 24 15.

As for me, and my House, we will Serve the Lord.

Psal. 68.31.

Ethiopia shall soon Stretch out her Hands unto God.

Boston, Printed by B. Green. 1706.

[Page 1]

THE Negro Christianized.

IT is a Golden Sentence, that has been sometimes quoted from Chrysostom; That for a man to know the Art of Alms, is more than for a man to be Crowned with the Dia­dem of Kings: But to Convert one Soul unto God, is more than to pour cut Ten Thousand Talents into the Baskets of the Poor. Truly, to Raise a Soul, from a dark State of Ignorance and Wicked­ness, to the Knowledge of GOD, and the Belief of CHRIST, and the prac­tice of our Holy and Lovely RELI­GION; 'Tis the noblest Work, that ever was undertaken among the Chil­dren of men. An Opportunity to Endeavour the CONVERSION of a Soul, from a Life of Sin, which is in­deed a woful Death, to Fear God, and Love CHRIST, and by a Religious Life to Escape the Paths of the Destroyer; [Page 2] it cannot but be Accptable to all that have themselves had in themselves Ex­perience of such a Conversion. And such an Opportunity there is in your Hands, O all you that have any Ne­groes in your Houses; an Opportu­nity to try, Whether you may not be the Happy Instruments, of Converting, the Blackest Instances of Blindness and Baseness, into admirable Candidates of Eternal Blessedness. Let not this Op­portunity be Lost; if you have any concern for Souls, your Own or O­thers; but, make a Trial, Whether by your Means, the most Bruitish of Crea­tures upon Earth may not come to be disposed, in some Degree, like the An­gels of Heaven; and the Vassals of Sa­tan, become the Children of God. Sup­pose these Wretched Negroes, to be the Offspring of Cham (which yet is not so very certain,) yet let us make a Trial, Whether the CHRIST who dwelt in the Tents of Shem, have not some of His Chosen among them; Let us make a Trial, Whether they that have been Scorched and Blacken'd by the Sun of Africa, may not come to have [Page 3] their Minds Healed by the more Benign Beams of the Sun of Righteousness.

It is come to pass by the Providence of God, without which there comes nothing to pass, that Poor Negroes are cast under your Government and Protection. You take them into your Families; you look on them as part of your Possessions; and you Expect from their Service, a Support, and perhaps an Increase, of your other Possessions. How agreeable would it be, if a Re­ligious Master or Mistress thus atten­ded, would now think with themselves! Who can tell but that this Poor Creature may belong to the Election of God! Who can tell, but that God may have sent this Poor Creature into my Hands, that so One of the Elect may by my means be Called; & by my Instruction be made Wise unto Salva­tion! The glorious God will put an un­speakable Glory upon me, if it may be so! The Considerations that would move you, To Teach your Negroes the Truths of the Glorious Gospel, as far as you can, and bring them, if it may be, to Live according to those Truths, a Sober, and a Righteous, and a Godly Life: They [Page 4] are Innumerable; And, if you would after a Reasonable manner consider, the Pleas which we have to make on the behalf of God, and of the Souls which He has made, one would wonder that they should not be Irresistible. Show your selves Men, and let Rational Argu­ments have their Force upon you, to make you treat, not as Bruits but as Men, those Rational Creatures whom God has made your Servants.


First; The Great GOD Commands it, and Requires it of you; to do what you can that Your Servants, may also be His. It was an Admonition once given; Eph. 5.9. Masters, Know that your Master is in Heaven. You will con­fess, That the God of Heaven is your Master. If your Negroes do not comply with your Commands, into what Anger, what Language, Perhaps into a mis­becoming Fury, are you transported▪ But you are now to attend unto the Commands of your more Absolute Mas­ter; and they are His Commands con­cerning your Negroes too. What can be more Expressive; than those words [Page 5] of the Christian Law? Col. 4.1. Masters, give unto your Servants, that which is Just & Equal, knowing that ye also have a Master in Heaven. Of what Servants is this Injunction to be understood? Verily, of Slaves. For Servants were generally such, at the time of Writ­ing the New Testament Wherefore, Masters, As it is Just & Equal, that your Servants be not Over-wrought, and that while they Work for you, you should Feed them, and Cloath them, and afford convenient Rest unto them, and make their Lives comfortable; So it is Just and Equal, that you should Acquaint them, as far as you can, with the way to Salvation by JESUS CHRIST. You deny your Master in Heaven, if you do nothing to bring your Servants unto the Knowledge and Service of that glorious Master. One Table of the Ten Commandments, has this for the Sum of it; Thou shalt Love thy Neigh­bour as thy self. Man, Thy Negro is thy Neighbour. T'were an Ignorance, un­worthy of a Man, to imagine otherwise. Yea, if thou dost grant, That God hath made of one Blood, all Nations of men, he [Page 6] is thy Brother too. Now canst thou Love thy Negro, and be willing to see him ly under the Rage of Sin, and the Wrath of God? Canst thou Love him, and yet refuse to do any thing, that his miserable Soul may be rescued from Eternal miseries? Oh! Let thy Love to that Poor Soul, appear in thy concern, to make it, if thou canst, as happy as thy own! We are Com­manded, Gal. 6.10. As we have oppor­tunity let us Do Good unto all men, especi­ally unto them, who are of the Houshold of Faith. Certainly, we have Opportunity, to Do Good unto our Servants, who are of our own Houshold; certainly, we may do something to make them Good, and bring them to be of the Houshold of Faith. In a word, All the Commandments in the Bible, which bespeak our Charity to the Souls of others, and our Endeavour that the Souls of others may be delivered from the Snares of Death; every one of these do oblige us, to do what we can, for the Souls of our Negroes. They are more nearly Related unto us, than many others are; we are more fully capable to do for them, than for many others.

[Page 7]To deal yet more plainly with you; Secondly; With what Face can you call your selves Christians, if you do nothing that your Servants also may be­come Christians? A Face that has been Baptized into the Name of the One GOD, in Three Persons, may Blush to continue unconcerned, Whether the Name of that God, be ever Known or no, in the very Families that belong unto them. Are they Worthy to be counted Christians, who are content tho' a part of their Families remain Heathen, who do not know God, nor call upon His Name? We read, 1 Tim. 5.8. If any provide not for his own, and especi­ally those of his own house, he has denied the Faith, and is worse than an Infidel. And what is he, who does Provide no­thing for the Souls of those whom God has made his own; that their Souls may be fed with the Bread of Life, and cloath'd with the Garments of Righteousness, and Heal'd of the Deadly Wounds which their Fall from God has brought up­on them! What is he, who is willing that those of his own House remain Strangers to the Faith, and Wretched [Page 8] Infidels? Housholder, Call thy self any thing but a Christian? As for that Wor­thy Name, — Nomen Depone, Do not pretend unto it; Thou art not Worthy of it. If thou wilt Name the Name of CHRIST, in denominating thy self a Christian, then Depart from this Iniquity, of leaving thy Servants, to continue the Servants of Iniquity. It will be found a Maxim that Fails not; That no man can Really and Heartily be of any Re­ligion, without some Desire to have that Religion Propagated. For a man to Profess a Religion, and care not a Straw, Whether any body besides him­self be of it; certainly, That mans Profession is not worth a Straw; it can be no Sincere Profession. It is Natural for men, to promote their own Reli­gion. Shall Christians fall short of Ma­hometans, or of Idolaters? The Pagan Japonians, were too much in the right ont, when they concluded a certain Worldly Generation of Europaeans, to be no Christians; Because they decli­ned the doing of any thing for the Propa­gation of Christianity. The Christians who have no concern upon their [Page 9] Minds to have Christianity Propagated, never can justify themselves. They say they are Christians, but they are not; What they are, we know not. All along the Pagans themselves, have made it the main Stroke in the Defi­nition of, A Good Man; He is One who does all the Good that he can. The great­est Good that we can do for any, is to bring them unto the fullest Acquain­tance with Christianity. Will Christia­nity allow him then to be, A Good Man, or, which is the same thing, A Christian, who refuses to do this Good, for the Servants that are under his influence? All genuine Christians are to be look'd on as the Children of the Faithful Abra­ham, who is therefore called, The Fa­ther of the Faithful. Now of this our Father, did Heaven take it for granted; Gen. 18.19. I know him, that he will Command his Children, and his Houshold, and they shall keep the way of the Lord. He had some Hundreds of Servants be­longing to his Houshold: He obtained, that the Slaves of his Houshold should Know the Way of the Lord; He, then Commanded, that they should Keep that [Page 10] Way. Now, Christianity is, The Way of the Lord. Housholder, There are Ser­vants pertaining to thy Houshold. It is a mighty Power which thou hast over them; A Despotick Power which gives thee numberless Advantages, to call them, and lead them into the Way of the Lord. Art thou Regardless of bringing them into Christianity? Then thou doest not Walk in the Steps of our Father Abraham; and art not like to call him thy Father, any otherwise than the Rich Man in the place of Torment. We are very sure, That where the Spirit of Christianity has had its true operation, it has from the Beginning Shone forth in most Lively Essayes, to diffuse the Light of the Glorious Gospel, unto such as have been Perishing for the Lack of that Vision. All Ecclesiastical History, down from the Book of, The Acts of the Apostles, to this Time, are fill'd with ad­mirable Examples, of a Zeal flaming in the Hearts of Christians, to Christianize the rest of the World. Christianity, Whither art thou fled! Return, Return, O Beautiful Daughter of Heaven, Re­turn, Return, that we may look upon thee. [Page 11] What shall we then see, but a vast company of Christian Housholders, filled with zealous contrivance and agony, to see their Houses become Christian Temples, and a glorious CHRIST wor­shipped and obeyed by all their Hous­holds! Yea, we read concerning some of the Primitive Christians, that with a Prodigie of Charity, they have bound themselves in the Quality of Servants, to Pagan Families, meerly that they might be in a way to Christianize the Families; And their successes were Wonderful. But what shall we say of it, When Masters that would be thought Christians already shall even refuse to have the Servants in their Families due­ly Christianized? Pray, deal faithfully; Don't mince the matter; say of it, as it is; It is a Prodigy of Wickedness; It is a prodigious Inconsistency, with true Christianity! Housholder, art thou a Christian? Then the Glory of a precious CHRIST is of such Account with thee, that it afflicts thee to think, that any one Person in the World should be without the Sight of it. And how can it be, that thou shouldest be neg­ligent [Page 12] about bringing to a sight of the Glory of God, in the Face of JESUS CHRIST, the Folks of thy own House, upon whom thou art able to do a great deal more than upon the rest of the World? Art thou a Christian? Then thou dost Pray for thy Servants, that they may become the Servants of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Children of God, and not fall short of entering into Rest. What! Pray for this; and yet never do any thing for it! It is impossible, or, such Praying, is but Mocking of God? Art thou a Christian? Then thou art apprehensive of a dreadful Danger, at­tending the Souls of them who know not God and obey not His Gospel: Tis thy perswasion, That if our Gospel be hid, it is hid from them that are left; and the Ungospelized Souls are in danger of an Eternal Banishment from the Favour and the City of God. Can a Christian see his own Servants in this condition, and not be sollicitous to have them saved out of it? No; When such Christians appear before the Glorious LORD, it will be in vain for them to plead, that they call'd him LORD, and own'd [Page 13] Him for their LORD. If they did it why did they not bring their Servants under the Government of the LORD? Verily, He will say to such Christians, I knew you not? Suppose that Language were heard from the mouth of a Mas­ter concerning a Servant; If I can have the Labour of the Slave, that's all I care for: Let his Soul go and be damn'd for all me! would not every Christian say, This were Language for the Mouth of a Devil, rather than for the Mouth of a Christian! Would not every Christian cry out, Let him not be call'd a Master, but a Monster that shall speak so! Con­sider, Syrs, whether Deeds have not a Language in them, as well as Words; a plainer Language than Words.

But we were saying; the Condition of the Servants! This invites us to say, Thirdly: The condition of your Servants does loudly sollicit your pains to Chris­tianize them; and you cannot but hear the cry of it, if you have not put off all Christian Compassion, all Bowels of Humanity. When You see how la­boriously, how obsequiously your Negros apply themselves, to serve you, to con­tent [Page 14] you, to enrich you, What? have you abandoned all principles of Grati­tude, or of Generosity? A Generous Mind cannot but entertain such senti­ments as these: Well, what shall I do, to make this poor creature happy? What shall I do, that this poor creature may have cause, to bless God forever, for falling into my Hands! The very First Thought which will arise in a Mind thus disposed, will form a Resolution, to get these poor Negroes well instructed in the things of their Everlasting Peace; It cannot be otherwise! The State of your Negroes in this World, must be low, and mean, and abject; a State of Servitude. No Great Things in this World, can be done for them. Something then, let there be done, towards their welfare in the World to Come. Even a Papist calls up­on us; ['tis Acosta:] Barbaris pro liber­tate erepta fidem Jesu Christi, et vitam hominibus dignam reddamus. In the mean time, tis a most horrid and cursed Con­dition, wherein your Servants are lan­guishing, until Christianity has made saving impressions upon them. A roar­ing Lion who goes about seeking whom he [Page 15] may devour, hath made a secure of them: Very many of them do with Devilish Rites actually worship Devils, or main­tain a magical conversation with Devils: And all of them are more Slaves to Sa­tan than they are to You, until a Faith in the Son of God has made them Free indeed. Will you do nothing to pluck them out of the Jaws of Satan the Devourer? Especially since you may justly imagine them crying to you, in terms like those of the Child whom a Lion was running away withal; Help! Help! I am yet alive! O Souls deaf to the cry of Souls, Pitty, Pitty the Souls of your Negroes, which cry unto you, Have pitty on us, O our Masters, have pit­ty on us, whom the holy God, has justly de­livered over into a woful Slavery to the Powers of Darkness: And, Oh! do some­thing, that the light of Salvation by the glo­rious Lord JESUS CHRIST may arrive unto us. A SOUL, Ignorant of God and His Christ, and vicious in all the affections of it, and that neither knows nor likes the Things that are Holy and Just and Good, and that has no illumi­tions from Heaven ever visiting of it, [Page 16] but is in Great Folly wandering down to the Congregation of the Dead; Such a Soul is a terrible fight! It can be no other than such a Soul, who does not count it so. Neighbours, you have such a fight, in all your Negroes, as long as they are left a People of no understanding. The uninstructed Negroes about your houses, appear like so many Ghosts and Spectres, You may, without being Fanciful, imagine that like so many Murdered Ghosts, they look very Ghastly upon you, and summon you to answer be­fore the Tribunal of God, for suffering them to perish in their miserable Cir­cumstances. Most certainly, Syrs; The Blood of the Souls of your poor Negroes, lies upon you, and the guilt of their Barbarous Impieties, and super­stitions, and their neglect of God and their Souls: If you are willing to [...] nothing done towards the Salvation of their Souls. We read of, People destroy'd for lack of knowledge. If you withhold Knowledge from your Black People, they will be Destroy'd. But their Destruction must very much ly at Your doors; You must answer for it. It was a [...] [Page 17] charge of old brought in against the Jewish Nation; Jer. 2 [...].34. In thy skirts is found the Blood of Souls. It were to be wish'd, that in the Skirts, the out-borders, the Colonies and Plantations of the English Nation, there might be no room for such a charge. But surely, Things look very Black upon us▪ You have your selves renounced Christianity, if you do not receive that Faithful say­ing of it, and most Awful one: Every one of us shall give account of himself to God. But then Remember, that one Article of your Account will be this: You bad poor. Negroes under you, and you expected and exacted Revenues of profit from them. Did you do any thing to save them from their Blindness and Baseness, and that the Great GOD might have Revenues of glory from them. Alas, if you have not thought and car'd and Watch'd for the Souls of your Negroes, as they that must give an Account, You will give up your Account with Grief, and not with Jac; very Grievous will be the consequences. A Prophet of God, might without put­ting any Disguise upon the matter, thus represent it; God has brought a Ser­vant [Page 18] unto thee, and said, Keep [...] Soul, Touch it, and Help it, that it may [...] be lost; if thou use no means to save the [...] Soul, thy soul shall certainly smart for it. Vain Dreamer; canst thou suppose that the Negroes are made for nothing but only to serve thy Pleasures, or that they owe no Homage to their Maker? Do thy part, that they may become a People of so much Understanding, as to Understand who is their Maker and their Saviour, and what Homage they owe unto Him: Else, He that made them will not have mercy on them. Yea, but Thy claim to His Mercy will be less than Theirs. More Stripes will belong unto thee.

On the other side, Fourthly: Oh! That our Neighbours would consider the incomparable Benefits that would follow upon your Endeavours to Christi­anize your Negroes, and bring them to a share with your selves in the Benefits of the Heavenly Inheritance. If your care and cost about the cultivation of your Negroes, be laid out upon such a Stony and Barren Soil, that you can [...] no Fruit of it, yet it is not all thrown away. The blessed God will approve [Page 19] and reward what you have done; Think, Tho' my Negroes will not prove a part of the Israel of God, an will not be gathered unto the Lord, yet my work is with my God, and what I do is glorious in the Eyes of the Lord. But it is very proba­ble, You may see some good Success of your Travail. And then! Oh! the Con­solations that will belong unto you! Christianity does Marvellously befriend and enrich and advance Mankind. The greatest Kindness that can be done to any Man is to make a Christian of him. You Negroes are immediately Raised unto an astonishing Felicity, when you have Christianized them. They are become amiable spectacles, & such as the Angels of God would gladly repair unto the Windows of Heaven to look upon. Tho' they remain your Servants, yet they are become the Chil­dren of God. Tho' they are to enjoy no Earthly Goods, but the small Allowance that your Justice and Bounty shall see proper for them, yet they are become Heirs of God, and Joint-Heirs with the Lord Jesus Christ. Tho' they are yo [...] Vassals, and must with a profound sub­jection [Page 20] wait upon you, yet the Angels of God now take them under their Guardianship, and vouchsafe to tend upon them. Oh! what have you done for them! Happy Masters, who are Instrumental to raise their Servants thus from the Dust, and make them objects for the Nobles of Heaven to take Notice of! But it will not be long before you and they come at length to be together in the Heavenly City. Lazarus there lies down at the same Feast, with his Master Abraham. There was Joy in Heaven, when your Servants first came to taste that the Lord is Gracious: and it cannot but be a vast Accession unto your Joy in Heaven, to meet your Servants there, and hear them forever blessing the gracious God, for the Day when He first made them your Servants. If these Consolations of God be small unto a Man, truly, he has very Bad Symptoms up­on him.

Yea, the pious Masters, that have in­stituted their Servants in Christian Pie­ty, will even in this Life have a sensible Recompence. The more Serviceable, and Obedient and obliging Behaviour [...] [Page 21] their Servants unto them, will be a sen­sible & a notable Recompence. Be assured, Syrs; Your Servants will be the Bet­ter Servants, for being made Christian Servants. To Christanize them aright, will be to fill them with all Goodness. Chris­tianity is nothing but a very Mass of Universal Goodness. Were your Servants well tinged with the Spirit of Christi­anity, it would render them exceeding Dutiful unto their Masters, exceeding Patient under their Masters, exceeding faithful in their Business, and afraid of speaking or doing any thing that may justly displease you. It has been ob­served, that those Masters who have used their Negroes with most of Humani­nity, in allowing them all the Comforts of Life, that are necessary and Con­venient for them, (Who have reme­mbred, that by the Law of God, even an Ass was to be relieved, When Sinking under his Burden, and an Ox might not be Muzzled when Treading out the Corn; and that if a Just man will regard the Life of his Beast▪ he will much more allow the comforts of life to and not hide himself from his own Flesh:) have [Page 22] been better Serv'd, had more work done for them, and better done, than those Inhumane Masters, who have used their Negroes worse than their Horses. And those Masters doubtless, who use their Negroes with most of Chris­tianity, and use most pains to inform them in, and conform them to, Chris­tianity, will find themselves no losers. by it. Onesimus was doubtless a Slave: but this poor Slave, on whose behalf a great Apostle of God was more than a little concerned; yea, one Book in our Bible was Written on his behalf! When he was Christianized, it was presently said unto his Masters, Philem. 11. In time past he was unprofitable to thee, but now he will be profitable. But many Masters whose Negroes have greatly vexed them, with miscarriage, may do well to examine, Whether Heaven be not chastising of them, for their failing in their Duty a­bout their Negroes. Had they done more, to make their Negroes the know­ing and willing Servants of God, it may be, God would have made their Negroes better Servants to them. Syrs, you may Read your Sin in the Punishment.

[Page 23]And now, what Objection can any Man Living have, to retund the force of these Considerations? Produce thy cause, O Impiety, Bring forth thy strong reasons, and let all men see what Idle and silly cavils, are thy best Reasons against this Work of God.

It has been cavilled, by some, that it is questionable Whether the Negroes have Rational Souls, or no. But let that Bruitish insinuation be never Whispered any more. Certainly, their Discourse, will abundantly prove, that they have Reason. Reason showes it self in the De­sign which they daily act upon. The vast improvement that Education has made upon some of them, argues that there is a Reasonable Soul in all of them. An old Roman, and Pagan, would call upon the Owner of such Servants, Homines tamen esse memento. They are Men, and not Beasts that you have bought, and they must be used accord­ingly. 'Tis true; They are Barbarous. But so were our own Ancestors. The Britons were in many things as Bar­barous, but a little before our Saviours Nativity, as the Negroes are at this [...] [Page 24] if there be any Credit in Caesars Com­mentaries. Christianity will be the best cure for this Barbarity. Their Com­plexion sometimes is made an Argument, why nothing should be done for them. A Gay sort of argument! As if the great God went by the Complexion of Men, in His Favours to them! As if none but Whites might hope to be Favoured and Accepted with God! Whereas it is well known, That the Whites, are the least part of Mankind. The biggest part of Mankind, perhaps, are Copper-Coloured; a sort of Tawnies. And our English that inhabit some Climates, do seem grow­ing apace to be not much unlike unto them. As if, because a people, from the long force of the African Sun & Soyl upon them, (improved perhaps, to fur­ther Degrees by maternal imaginations, and other accidents,) are come at length to have the small Fibres of their Veins, and the Blood in them, a little more Interspersed thro their Skin than o­ther People, this must render them left valuable to Heaven then the rest of Mankind? Away with such Trifles. The God who looks on the Heart, is not [Page 25] moved by the colour of the Skin; is not more propitious to one Colour than [...]. Say rather, with the Apostle; Acts 10.34, 35. Of a truth I perceive, that God is no respecter of persons; but in every Nation, he that feareth Him and worketh Righteousness, is accepted with Him. In­deed their Stupidity is a Discouragement. It may seem, unto as little purpose, to Teach, as to wash an Aethopian. But the greater their Stupidity, the greater must be our Application. If we can't learn them so much as we Would, let us learn them as much as we Can. A little divine Light and Grace infused in­to them, will be of great account. And the more Difficult it is, to fetch such for­lorn things up out of the perdition whereinto they are fallen, the more Laudable is the undertaking: There will be the more of a Triumph, if we prosper in the undertaking. Let us encourage our selves from that word; Mat. 3.9. God is able of these Stones, to raise up Children unto Abraham.

Well; But if the Negroes are Christi­anized, they will be Baptised; and their Baptism will presently entitle them to [Page 26] their Freedom; so our Money is thrown away.

[...], If this were true; that a Slave bought with thy Money, were by thy means brought unto the Things that ac­company Salvation, and thou shouldest from this time have no more Service from him yet thy Money were not thrown away. That Mans Money will perish with him, who had rather the Souls in his Family should Perish, than that he should lose a little Money. And sup­pose it were so, that Baptism gave a le­gal Title to Freedom. Is there no guard­ing against this Inconvenience? You may by sufficient Indentures, keep off the things, which you reckon so Inconve­nient. But it is all a Mistake. There is no such thing. What Law is it, that Son the Baptised Slave at Liberty? Not the Law of Christianity: that al­lows of Slavery; Only it wonderfully Dulcifies, and Mollifies, and Mo­derates the Circumstances of it. Chris­tianity directs a Slave, upon his em­bracing the Law of the Radeemer, to satis­fy himself, That he is the Lords Free-man▪ tho' he continues a Slave. It supposes, (Col 3.11.) That there are Bond as [Page 27] well as Free, among those that have been Renewed in the Knowledge and Image of Jesus Christ. Will the Canon-law do it? No; The Canons of Numberless Councils, mention, the Slaves of Chris­tians, without any contradiction. Will the Civil Law do it? No: Tell, if you can, any part of Christendom, wherein Slaves are not frequently to be met withal. But is not Freedom to be claim'd for a Baptised Slave, by the English Constitution? The English Laws, a­bout Villians, or, Slaves, will not say so; for by those Laws, they may be grant­ed for Life, like a Lease, and passed over with a Mannor, like other Goods or Chat­tels. And by those Laws, the Lords may sieze the Bodies of their Slaves e­ven while a Writt, De libertate▪ probanda, is depending. These English Laws were made when the Lords & the Slaves, were both of them Christians; and they stand still unrepealed. If there are not now such Slaves in England as formerly, it is from the Lords, more than from the Laws. The Baptised then are not thereby entitled unto their Liber­ty. Howbeit, if they have arrived un­to [Page 28] such a measure of Christianity, that none can forbid Water for the Baptising of them, it is fit, that they should enjoy those comfortable circumstances with us, which are due to them, not only as the Children of Adam, but also as our Bre­thren, on the same level with us in the expectations of a blessed Immortality, thro' the Second Adam. Whatever Slaughter the Assertion may make a­mong the pretensions which are made unto Christianity, yet while the sixteenth Chapter of Matthew is in the Bible, it must be asserted; the Christian, who cannot so far Deny himself, can be no Disciple of the Lord JESUS CHRIST. But, O Christian, thy Slave will not Serve thee one jot the worse for that Self-denial.

The way is now cleared, for the work that is proposed: that excellent WORK, The Instruction of the Negroes in the Christian Religion.

A CATECHISM shall be got ready for them; first a Shorter, then a Larger; Suited at to their poor Capacities.

They who cannot themselves Person­ally so well attend the Instruction of the [Page 29] Negroes, may employ and reward those that shall do it for them. In many Families, the Children may help the Ne­groes, to Learn the Catechism, or their well-instructed and well-dispo­sed English Servants may do it: And they should be Rewarded by the Masters, when they do it.

In a Plantation of many Negroes, why should not a Teacher be hired on pur­pose, to instil into them the principles of the Catechism?

Or, if the Overseers are once Catechised themselves, they may soon do the Office of Catechisers unto those that are under them.

However, Tis fit for the Master also Personally to enquire into the progress which his Negroes make in Christianity, and not leave it Entierly to the manage­ment of others.

There must be Time allow'd for the Work. And why not The Lords-Day? The precept of God con­cerning the Sabbath, is very positive; Remember the SABBATH-DAY, to keep it Holy. Thou shalt not then do any work, thou nor thy Son, nor thy Daughter, [Page 30] thy Man-Servant, nor thy Maid-Servant. By virtue of this precept, we do even demand, The Lord-Day, for the Negroes: that they may be permitted the Freedom of The Lords-Day, and not be then unnecessarily diverted from attending on such means of Instruc­tion, as may be afforded unto them.

To quicken them unto the learning of the Catechism, it would be very well to propose unto the Negroes, Agreeable Recompences, & Priviledges, to be receiv'd and enjoy'd by them, when they shall have made a good progress in it. Syrs, A Mahometan will do as much as this comes to, for any one that will em­brace his Alcoran. Oh, Christians, will not you do more for your Generation, than the Children of this World for theirs. And it is to be desired, that the Negroes may not learn to say their Catechism only by rote, like Parrots; but that their In­structors, may put unto them such o­ther Questions relating to the points of the Catechism, that be their Answers, (at least of YES, or NO,) it may be per­ceived, that they Know what they Say.

[Page 31]But it will be also needful and use­ful, to uphold a more particular Con­ference often with the Negroes; and in conferring with them, to inculcate on them such Admonitions of Piety; as may have a special tendency to Form & Mould their Souls for the Kingdom of God.

Having told them, Who Made them, and Why He made them, and that they have Souls, which will be Wretched or Happy forever, according as they mind Religion; then tell them;

That by their sin against God, they are fallen into a dreadful condition.

Show them, That the Almighty God is Angry with them, and that, if they Dy un­der the Anger of God, they will after Death, be cast among Devils; and that all the Stripes, and all the Wants, and all the sad things they ever suffered in this World, are nothing, to the many Sorrows, which they shall suffer among the Damned, in the Dun­geon of Hell.

Tell them; That JESUS CHRIST is a Saviour for them as well as others, and as willing to save them out of their dread­ful condition, as any others.

Show them, That JESUS CHRIST, who is both God and Man in One Person, came, and Kept the Law of God, and then [Page 32] Offer'd up His Life to God, on the Cross, to make amends for our Sin; and that JESUS CHRIST invites Them as well as others, to Look to Him, and Hope in Him, for Everlast­ing Life; and that if they come to JESUS CHRIST, they shall be as Welcome to Him, as any People; Tho' He be the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, yet He will cast a Kind Look upon Sorry Slaves and Blacks that Believe on Him, and will prepare a Mansion in Heaven for them.

Tell them; That if they Serve God patiently and cheerfully in the Condition which he orders for them, their condition will very quickly be infinitely mended, in Eternal Happiness.

Show them, That it is GOD who has caused them to be Servants; and that they Serve JESUS CHRIST, while they are at Work for their Masters, if they are Faithful and Honest Servants, and if they do cheerful­ly what they do, because the Lord JESUS CHRIST has bid them to do it; and that, if they give themselves up to JESUS CHRIST, and keep always afraid of Sinning against Him, it won't be Long be­fore they shall be in a most Glorious Conditi­on; It can't be Long before they Dy, and [...]! they shall Rest from all their Labours, and all their Troubles, and they shall be Companions of Angels in the Glories of a Paradise.

[Page 33]Discourse with them, on these things, till their Hearts burn within them. In Discourse with them, at length put it unto them;

Well; Do you desire to Know the Only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom He hath sent?

Is it your Desire, that JESƲS CHRIST may Save you from the Guilt of Sin, and the Curse of God?

Are you willing to put your self into the Gra­cious Hands of JESƲS CHRIST, and be Ruled by all His Holy Laws?

Do you wish that the Blessed Spirit of the Lord, may Enter your Hearts, and make you Know and Love and Chuse the things that please Him?

Who can tell, but that while you are propounding such things to the poor Negroes, their conquered Souls may Consent unto them, and by that Con­sent open a Well that shall Spring up, & Spread out, unto Everlasting Life?

But in a Special manner Teach them to Pray. Teach them and Charge them every Day to fall down on their Knees before the Lord; with Suppli­cations of this Importance.

Heavenly Father; Give me thy CHRIST; Give me thy SPIRIT; Pardon my Sins; Make me thy Servant; Bring me to Heaven. Amen. [Page 34] Or, As they get further on, they may Pray after this Manner.

O Great GOD; Thou hast made me, and all the World.

Make me truly Sorry for my Sinning against my Maker.

Let thy Glorious CHRIST Save me: and help me to Know, and to Take His Great Sal­vation.

Teach me to Serve Thee, O Lord. And make me a Blessing unto those that have me for their Servant.

Bring me to a part in Heaven among thy Children for ever more. Amen.

Perhaps, the LORDS-PRAYER, by this Paraphrase may be brought down unto some of their Capacities.

[Our Fa­ther which art in the Heaven.]
HEavenly Father. Thou art my Maker; Help me to own thee as my Father: Pitty me, Relieve me, as one of thy Children.
[Hallowed be thy Name.]
Let me and all men Glorify thy Name; & let thy CHRIST be Glorious & Precious to me, and to all the World.
[Thy Kingdom Come.]
Teach me thy Laws; & cause me, & all men, to Love and keep those Lovely Laws.
[Thy Will be done on Earth as it is in Hea­ven.]
Give me to Do heartily all that thou Commandest me to Do; Give me to Bear Patient­ly all that thou orderest me to bear. And let me begin the Work of Heaven while I am on Earth.
[Give us this Day our Daily Bread.]
Thou knowest what is Best for me; Lord, let me want no­thing that shall be good for me.
[And For­give us our Debts, as we Forgive our Deb­ters.]
I have Sinned against thee; O Pardon all my Sin, for the Sake of my Saviour. Do Good to them that have done Evil to me, and do not Leave me so much as to wish Evil to them.
[And lead us not into Temptati­on; but de­liver us from Evil.]
When I am Tempted to Sin, Oh, Let not the Temptation be too hard for me; and Let not the Devil be my Master.
[For thine is the King­dom, and the Power, & the Glory for ever. Amen.
O Lord, Every thing is at thy Dispose; Thou canst do e­very thing. Be merciful to me, and all the Glory of the Mercy shall be thine for ever more. Amen.
[Page 36]

We will now proceed unto our CATECHISMS.
A SHORTER CATECHISM; For the Negroes of a Smaller Capacity.

Quest. WHO made you and all the World?

Answ. The Great GOD made me, to Serve Him.

Q. Who Saves the Children of Men from all their Miseries?

A. JESUS CHRIST, who is both God and Man, Saves them that Look unto Him.

Q. What will become of you, when you Dy?

A. If I Obey JESUS CHRIST, my Soul will go to the Heavenly Paradise. If I continue Wicked, my Soul will be cast among the Devils.

A LARGER CATECHISM, for the Negroes of a bigger Capacity.

Q. WHO is that Great GOD, whom you and all Men are to Serve?

[Page 37] A. The Great GOD, is the Eternal Spirit, who Made every thing, and is every where: And there is no God but He.

Q. How many Persons are there in the ONE GOD?

A. In the One GOD, there are Three Persons; The Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Q. Where is the Rule, which God has given us to Serve Him?

A. The Rule to Serve God is in the Bible, and I must Labour to Know and Do, what is in the Bible.

Q. What was our Condition, when God Made the first Man, at the Beginning of the World?

A. God made One Man, and One Woman, Adam and Eve, in His own Image, Holy and Righteous.

Q. Into what Condition are we now fallen?

A. Our first Parents did Sin against God, by Eating Forbidden Fruit, and made themselves, and all their Chil­dren Miserable.

Q. What is the Misery of our present Condition?

A. My Heart is full of Sin; My life [Page 38] is full of Sir; I am under the wrath of God for Sin; I am a Slave to Sin and Satan.

Q. Who is there to Save us from our Misery?

A. JESUS CHRIST is my Great Sa­viour; and there is none but He to Save are.

Q. Who is JESUS CHRIST, Our Sa­viour?

A. JESUS CHRIST is the Son of God, who took the Man JESUS, the Son of the Virgin Mary, into One Per­son with Himself.

Q. What has JESUS CHRIST our Sa­viour done for us?

A. JESUS CHRIST kept the Law of God, which we have not kept; He then Dyed for us on the Cross; & Rose from the Dead, & went up to Heaven.

Q. What will JESUS CHRIST our Saviour do for us, if we come to Him?

A. God will be my Friend, and will fit me for Heaven, and take me to Hea­ven, if I Believe on JESUS CHRIST.

Q. How may we See that God is become our Friend, through JESUS CHRIST?

A. I shall be Sorry for my Sin, and I [Page 39] shall be afraid of Sinning any more, if God receive me to His Mercy by JESUS CHRIST.

Q. Whom do you now chuse to Serve?

A. My Saviour shall be my Master; He is a Good Master; He has Bought me to Serve Him; and He will make me a Child of God.

Q. If you Serve JESUS CHRIST, what must you do?

A. I must Love God, and Pray to Him, and Keep the Lords-Day.

I must Love all Men, and never Quarrel, nor be Drunk, nor be Unchast, nor Steal, nor tell a Ly, nor be Dis­content with my Condition.

Q. If you desire to Obey JESUS CHRIST in this World, What will be your Portion in another World?

A. If I am a true Servant of JESUS CHRIST, my Soul will go into a Bles­sed Paradise when I dy. My Body will be Raised from the Dead, at the Day of Judgment. I shall then be Happy, with Angels, in the City of God for ever.

Q. What will become of them, who do not Obey the Lord JESUS CHRIST?

[Page 40] A. The Souls of the Wicked are thrown among Devils; and at the Day of Judgment, JESUS CHRIST will Judge them to be cast into Everlasting Fire.

Q. What must you do, that you may Do Good, and come to Good?

A. I can of my self do nothing that is Good; But I will cry unto the Good Spirit of God to help me.


I. THE TEN COMMAND­MENTS, are a very Mate­rial Part of the Instruction to be bestow'd upon the Negroes. As soon as may be, they should be told, That the Great GOD Spoke from Heaven, Ten Com­mandments. And that all Believers on JESUS CHRIST, must Labour to Keep those Commandments, and be Trou­bled and Asham'd, and beg Pardon for the Sake of JESUS CHRIST, if they break them.

Quest. WHAT is the First Commandment?

A Thou shalt have no other Gods before Me.

Q What is the meaning of this?

A. I must Worship the only True God, [...] Him only.

[Page 41]Q. What is the Second Commandment?

A. Thou shalt not make to thy self any Graven Image.

Q. What is the meaning of this?

A. I must Worship God only in such Wayes, as He Himself has appointed.

Q. What is the Third Commandment?

A. Thou shalt not take the Name of the Lord thy God in Vain.

Q. What is the meaning of this.

A. I must make a Right Use of all those things, whereby God makes Himself known unto us: and I must not Swear profanely.

Q. What is the Fourth Commandment?

A. Remember the Sabbath Day to Keep it Holy.

Q. What is the meaning of this?

A. I must not Work nor Play on the LORDS DAY, but Spend it in Works of Religion.

Q What is the Fifth Commandment?

A. Honour thy Father and Mother.

Q. What is the meaning of it?

A I must show all due Respect unto Eve­ry One; and if I have a Master or Mistress, I must be very dutiful unto them.

Q. What is the Sixth Commandment?

A. Thou shalt not Kill.

Q. What is the meaning of it?

A I must not hate nor hurt any One; I must use all Good Means to Preserve my own Life, and the Lives of others.

[Page 42]Q. What is the Seventh Commandment?

A. Thou shalt not Commit Adultery.

Q. What is the meaning of it?

A. I must Shun all the Filthy Lusts of the Flesh; and if I be Married I must be true to my Companion.

Q. What is the Eighth Commandment?

A. Thou shalt not Steal.

Q. What is the meaning of it?

A. I must not take any thing without Leave of the Right owner; And I must use honesty both in getting what I may, and in spending what I have gotten.

Q. What is the Ninth Commandment?

A. Thou shalt not hear False Witness against thy Neighbour.

Q. What is the meaning of it?

A. I must never tell a Ly; And I must be tender of the Good Name of Every One.

Q. What is the Tenth Commandment?

A. Thou shalt not Covet.

Q. What is the meaning of it?

A. I must be Patient and Content with such a Condition as God has ordered for me.

II. IF the Negroes might Learn to Read the Sacred Scriptures, which make Wise unto Salvation, Vast would be the Advantage thereof unto them. Until that might be accomplished, would it not be Advantageous unto [Page 43] them, to make them Learn by heart, certain Particular Verses of the Scrip­tures?

These, among the rest.

Psal. 86.9.

All Nations whom thou hast made shall come and Worship before thee, O Lord; and shall Glorify thy Name.

Joh. 3.16.

God so Loved the World, that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whosoever be­lieveth in Him, should not Perish, but have Everlasting Life.

Rom. 14.10.

We shall all stand before the Judgment-Seat of Christ.

Tit. 2.11, 12.

The Grace of God, which bringeth Salva­tion hath appeared unto all men; Teaching us, that denying all Ungodliness & Worldly Lusts, we should Live Soberly, Righteously, and Godlily, in this present World.

Eph. 6.5, 6, 7, 8.

Servants, Be Obedient unto them that are your Masters — as the Servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the Heart; with Good Will, doing Service as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that [Page 44] whatsoever Good thing any man does, the same shall he receive of the Lord.

III. WHY should not the Negroes be taught, The Creed? In that which goes under the Name of, The Apostles Creed, there are se­veral Articles, which were Successively introduced in Later Ages. The Articles more unquestionably derived from the Apostles, made a Shorter Collection. Here you have it for them.

I Believe in God the Father, the Almighty.
And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord.
I Believe in the Holy Spirit;
The Resurrection of the Body:
And Life Everlasting. Amen.

IV. SOmetimes Negro-Children, are cast into our Families. If a Christi­an Master or Mistress, will with all due Solemnity, Engage to bring up those Children in Christianity, and to do their best that they shall be the Servants of JESUS CHRIST, We will say, Can a­ny Man forbid Water, that these should not be Baptised, who have been Devoted [Page 45] unto the Service of the Glorious Lord, by those who have the Disposal of them? Consider, Gen. 17.13.

However, tis to be hoped, that the Elder Servants as Black as they are, will shortly be the Candidates of Baptism. And, As the Negroes grow ripe for Bap­tism, tis fit the Doctrine and the Des [...] of Baptism, should be thoroughly Ex­plained unto them. A brief Institution, shall here be tendred.

Q. Do you chuse the Great GOD for your God?

A. Yes. I chuse God the Father for my Father; I chuse God the Son, for my Saviour; I chuse God the Spirit for my Leader. And I Look for the Bles­sedness, which He has Promised for His People in a better World.

Q. Do you Rely upon JESUS CHRIST alone, to bring you to Blessedness?

A. I Repair to JESUS CHRIST, Hoping in Him, to be made Righteous, and Holy, and Happy.

Q. Do you heartily devote your selves to the Service of the Glorious Lord?

A. I Desire that I may Know the Lord, and Serve Him with a Perfect Heart, and a Willing Mind.

[Page 46]Q. Is there any thing that you desire, as a Token of this?

A. I Desire to be Baptised.

Q. What is to be Signifyed, by the Baptism which you desire?

A. I would give my self up to the glorious LORD, whose Name is in Baptism to be put upon me.

[...] would hope to have my Soul [...] from my Sin, by the Blood and the Grace of the Lord.

I would Resolve to Serve the Flesh, and the World, and the Devil no more: and no more Dirty my self with Sin, after I have been Washed for the Lord.

And I would Expect, that the Body thus Baptised, shall be Raised from the Dead unto Everlasting Life.

James 5.20.

He which converteth a Sinner from the Error of his way, shall save a Soul from Death.


This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.