The Ethics of Turner’s Rebellion

Before exploring the ethics of Nat Turner’s four-day slave revolt, it is important to plainly state my position, lest, as so often happens, people refusing to carefully read my writings impose upon them what they think are my opinions so as to dismiss me or my arguments:  I am against all forms of violence – physical and institutional – not because I’m a pacifist, but because I recognize my violent nature, and choose to be nonviolent.

There is much we can learn from the ethical dilemmas raised almost 200 years ago. On August 21, 1831, Nat Turner, a preacher, an educated man of the cloth and a fervent Bible-believing follower of Christ, led the deadliest slave rebellion in U.S. history in Southampton County, Virginia, a predominantly Black, impoverished neighborhood. 

A solar eclipse in February of that year and the appearance of a

Professor of Social Ethics and Latinx Studies at Iliff School of Theology in Denver, Colorado, and a contributing correspondent at Good Faith Media.

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