Chapter

The Divine Providence of Slavery and Freedom

John Saillant

in Black Puritan, Black Republican

Published in print January 2003 | ISBN: 9780195157178
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199834617 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195157176.003.0004

Series: Religion in America

 The Divine Providence of Slavery and Freedom

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Lemuel Haynes was schooled in the New Divinity, the Calvinist theology of the students of Jonathan Edwards. Haynes declared himself a follower of Samuel Hopkins, the leading interpreter of Edwardsean theology in the last third of the eighteenth century. Hopkins favored colonization, the expatriation of African Americans, but he also developed at length a claim that whites should exhibit disinterested benevolence in their relations with blacks. Edwardsean ethics cast disinterested benevolence as the highest moral state. Haynes argued that disinterested benevolence could unite black and white and, in fact, according to the scriptural covenant between God and Abraham, mandated the manumission of slaves and their acceptance into free society.

Keywords: Calvinist theology; colonization; covenant; disinterested benevolence; Edwards; Edwardsean; ethics; Hopkins; manumission; New Divinity

Chapter.  18698 words. 

Subjects: Christianity

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