20Dabney/Systematic%20Theology/ciofreedopadkin.ml (1 of 10) [23/08/ Chapter Revealed Theology: God and His Attributes. A. The Doctrine of the Decrees in Theology .. Now that my Systematic Theology is again being reprinted, the Preface can be .. ; Dabney, Syst. and. by R. L. Dabney. in ePub, mobi ciofreedopadkin.ml formats. Syllabus and Notes of the Course of Systematic and Polemic Theology Taught In Union Theological Seminary.
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Syllabus and notes of the course of systematic and polemic theology. by: Dabney , Robert Lewis, Publication date: pher, theologian; Professor of Systematic Theology, Union Theological Seminary . Dabney, Robert L. Syllabus and Notes of the Course of Systematic and. Table of Contents Introduction A systematic method Chapter 1 – Principles and Method of the Work Do not force, do.
Thomas J. Before the Civil War there were discussions simply on whether or not slavery was a moral evil, with Dabney taking the side that slavery was good. After the Civil War — particularly after the Emancipation Proclamation — there were discussions on how the Presbyterian Church should handle freed slaves within the church. The latter discussion pertained more to Presbyterian polity structures but did include arguments that will be helpful in understanding his view on slavery.
Dabney was quite the theologian, and of particular influence in the American Church. However his views on slavery — especially his remarks on race — have tainted his reputation and influence that his otherwise good theology could have on other issues.
The main part of the book is concerned with his argument for slavery from the Bible. He then concludes with the argument from the ethical side and the economic side. For the purposes of this paper the biblical argument only will be summarized and critiqued. By this relation we understand the obligations of the slave to labour for life, without his own consent, for the master.
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Charles Hodge as a thinker of profundity and power, and a stimulator of thought. Abraham a slaveholder After some preliminary matters are settled he begins his argument with Abraham as a slaveholder. The Abolitionists claim that Abraham only had hired servants and not actual slaves. There are many that argue against it on theological grounds and seek to do away with it by using the legislative system to push through new laws.
Others blow up abortion clinics in an attempt to scare and punish those who would practice abortion. So it is hard to categorize the Abolitionists into one group without overgeneralizing. For had they been real slaves [they argue] they would not have continued so one day after getting arms in their hands. This is a large debate that is beyond the scope of this paper and I will not argue for a position.
My purpose in even stating this is to show that Dabney sees a connection between the Mosaic Covenant and the church that others do not see. While I think that this certainly has an effect on the way in which he sees slavery in the Old Testament and its relation to the New Testament church, I do not think that he makes any assertions that those who are involved with the current debate on Law and Gospel would not see as impertinent to the discussion.
His argument is that since the authorization was never repealed there is no scriptural authority for someone to argue against the institution of slavery. He then moves on to show what God expressly authorized through Moses. This is because the issue for Dabney is over whether or not slavery is a moral or ethical evil, not over whether or not there was ever a legitimate time to let the slave go free. Dabney begins here in Exodus because he wants to establish the fact that even in the case of Hebrews owning Hebrews, slavery could be involuntary.
Progressing in this argument, he continues to Leviticus —46 to show that in the case of the foreigner [non-Jew] who sojourned among the Hebrews, when they would be bought they were to be slaves forever — not expected to be freed on the seventh year or in the year of Jubilee.
He makes this case by showing that foreign slaves were inheritable property whose children would continue as slaves under the Mosaic Law.
So while the slave would be under him for 6 years it was not as if he possessed him. See chapter 7 pages 27—30 for his explanation. The idea has to do with acquiring someone for some purpose, not necessarily the monetary exchange. His point is that plenty of years of Jubilee had passed by that time; if it were meant to be applied to the non-Jew there would be no more Gibeonite slaves. The definition of douloj The first argument that he tackles concerns the lexical use of douloj in the New Testament.
Edward Robinson. His first example is of Cornelius in Acts —17 who himself owned two slaves, but was baptized into the church along with his slaves by Peter in Acts — These masters and slaves continued to be masters and slaves even after being saved and gathered together in a local church.
For Dabney it would seem to make more sense, if slavery was evil, that the New Testament writers instead of exhorting masters and slaves to behave properly, would rebuke them for continuing in their evil practices and instead strive for freedom. This is in essence the heart of his argument. Philemon and Onesimus The last biblical argument that Dabney puts forth as reason why slaveholding cannot be sinful is the case of Philemon and Onesimus.
The Abolitionists claim that this is the proof that Paul saw slavery as a moral evil of which he ended by telling Philemon no longer to hold Onesimus as a slave.
Dabney sees this verse differently. If Paul had the right to emancipate, why did he send him back at all, when every other motive prompted to keep him? After the biblical section Dabney moves into the ethical 11 Critique of The Old Testament Argument The Bible does not speak of slavery as being a wrong or sinful thing, this much is clear.
The issue is how and why the person entered into slavery and the way in which the master is treating the slave. Dabney confuses these two things and while arguing that slavery is not wrong — the act of owning a person as a slave — blurs the line between how the person became the slave and slavery itself.
This can be witnessed in a number of places but perhaps of most note is that way in which he makes Hebrew slavery, sanctioned in the Law, into an involuntary type of slavery rather than voluntary.
The Bible makes it very clear that stealing a man is wrong.
Since much of his argument hinges on the provision of Hebrew slaves, for the argument to work he has to show that Hebrew slavery is involuntary and not voluntary. The Abolitionists claimed, rightly so, that Hebrew slaves were to be set free either on the seventh year of his service or on the year of Jubilee. Rather than concede this point, Dabney is interested in showing that the Hebrew would not want to enter into slavery and therefore it would be involuntary.
This is where Dabney was sloppy with his argument and began to betray his biases.
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Essentially the rest of his argument hinges on this faulty premise that Hebrew slavery was involuntary. Slavery laws given to the Hebrews A glaring problem of which Dabney makes no mention is the fact that these laws are given to the Hebrews. Provision for slavery and a way for a man to enter into slavery to work off argument and the economic argument.
Note that these crimes are punishable by death. Even if Dabney were to argue that the Church and Israel are the same, he would still have the problem of Americans owning Africans. At the very least he would have to concede that the Old Testament Hebrew is the New Testament Christian and therefore the only people who could be slaves of Christians would be other Christians. But this type of reasoning would deny all of the New Testament texts that say that the believer is no longer under the law Rom.
Who exactly is allowed to own whom? Deuteronomy —16 According to Dabney the Abolitionists would argue from Deuteronomy —16 that a runaway slave deserved his liberty.
He shall dwell with you, in your midst, in the place that he shall choose within one of your towns, wherever it suits him.
You shall not wrong him. If he had been a Hebrew slave and escaped to another Hebrew the whole situation would have been different, requiring restoration or restitution.
Since this text iss dealing with foreign slaves, it did not apply to the American South. Unfortunately Dabney does not provide the citation for Stuart, he simply quotes him.
The Abolitionists, by and large, were northerners. To the northerners, a slave who had escaped his southern slave master — through something like the Underground Railroad for example — was essentially a foreign slave escaping from inordinate cruelty.
Dabney had previously argued that the seventh year of freedom and the year of Jubilee were meant only for Hebrew slaves and not for foreigners that had been taken in as slaves.
From the Archives: Robert L. Dabney
It would be illogical then for Dabney to argue that Black slaves were anything other than Americans and yet not allow for the enactment of the year of Jubilee for the American slaves. When Paul addresses masters and slaves in Ephesians —9 he is not claiming that this type of slavery is the same type practiced in ancient Israel. Nor is he claiming that there should be masters and slaves.
More costly dwellings are built. What were commodious and respectable mansions a few years ago, are now dragged away as so much rubbish; and if Providence permits our much-abused wealth still to increase, the places we now build will be pulled down to make room for the more luxurious palaces of our children. New and unheard-of indulgences are invented. What our fathers regarded as luxuries almost extravagant, we have accustomed ourselves to look upon as ordinary comforts, almost despised for their cheapness.
More capricious wants are indulged; more costly articles of adornment are invented. And, as if to repudiate in the most direct and expressive mode every remnant of the obligations of sobriety, costliness has become the very element of fashion. Because the ornament is monstrously expensive, in proportion to its true utility, therefore it is sought.
Now let extravagance of expenditure take as enormous strides as it will, the indulgence of Christians follows close on its heels.
No species of adornment, however outrageously wasteful; no imaginary indulgence, however capricious, has become fashionable, but rich Christians have soon proceeded to employ it almost as commonly as the world…. He is considered a distinguished son of Providence Presbyterian Church. They were married on March 28, They had six sons together, three of whom died in childhood from diphtheria two in , the other in From to , he was professor of ecclesiastical history and polity and from to adjunct professor of systematic theology in Union Theological Seminary, where he later became full professor of systematics.
In , he was appointed professor of mental and moral philosophy in the University of Texas. By , failing health compelled him to retire from active life, although he still lectured occasionally.
He was co-pastor, with his brother-in-law B. Smith, of the Hampden-Sydney College Church to , also serving Hampden-Sydney College in a professorial capacity on occasions of vacancies in its faculty. Dabney, whose wife was a first cousin to Stonewall Jackson's wife, participated in the Civil War : during the summer of he was chaplain of the 18th Virginia Infantry in the Confederate army, and in the following year was chief of staff to Jackson during the Valley Campaign and the Seven Days Battles.
He continued to hold pro-slavery views typical in the South before the Civil War, and his continued support of slavery in speeches and a book published after the war and his strong loyalty to the Confederacy until the s made him a visible figure in the post-war South Hettle, Dabney's remains were returned to Hampden-Sydney College where he was buried.Tuscaloosa: University Alabama Press, Dabney, Robert Lewis, and Rev.
New York, NY. The nation today faces a number of issues: homosexuality, divorce, racism, sex slavery, feminism, and postmodernism to name a few.
The north was increasingly moving toward an industrial and business area while the south was increasingly agrarian. For Dabney it would seem to make more sense, if slavery was evil, that the New Testament writers instead of exhorting masters and slaves to behave properly, would rebuke them for continuing in their evil practices and instead strive for freedom. This can be witnessed in a number of places but perhaps of most note is that way in which he makes Hebrew slavery, sanctioned in the Law, into an involuntary type of slavery rather than voluntary.