I'm a bit confused over the "slavery" debate here (may you all have peace!). Are you saying that it is immoral for a christian to have a slave? If so, I have to disagree... and clarify:
What some of you refer to here as "slaves" had two connotations during that time, one which could raise questions/concerns (if the "owner" was a christian), and one that did not. The instance that did not raise questions/concerns was merely when there was an employer/employee relationship. However, the word "slave" is entirely inaccurate in and of itself. The etymology of the word is:
"Middle English sclave, from Anglo-French or Medieval Latin; Anglo-French esclave, from Medieval Latin sclavus, from Sclavus Slavic; from the frequent enslavement of Slavs in central Europe during the early Middle Ages. Date: 14th century. Meaning: 1: a person held in servitude as the chattel of another 2: one that is completely subservient to a dominating influence."
Since the word didn't even originate until the 14th century, however, after occurrences that didn't even occur until that time... the word in the Bible is INACCURATE. Indeed, a proper search will show that it didn't even occur in the earlier versions, in either the OT... OR the NT.
The Hebrew words were "ebed" (meaning "servant", yes, but primarily "bondsman")... and "sakiyr" (meaning "hired" servant). In the first instance, the person took out a BOND against themselves...and thus literally "sold" themselves into service... TO PAY OFF A DEBT. This did NOT necessarily mean that the one he/she was serving was owed the debt. Often, the debts of others were paid off by the Householder, who had the money to do it. In exchange, the person served the Householder and his household. In the second instance, the person was merely an employee... and thus PAID (i.e., "hired").
The Greek word was "doulos" and meant the same thing: bondsman, even attendant.
The conundrum this might have caused for christians is that they were to FORGIVE the debts of others... and so taking someone in service for "bond" would have been a problem. UNLESS... the one who OWED the debt refused to be LET LOOSE of the debt but INSISTED on paying it. In which case, LOVE... would prompt the one OWED... to allow the debtor to repay... that the debtor's conscience was "clean."
It is earthling man... the false "scribes"... who mistransliterated the word... to his own will (primarily to JUSTIFY "slavery" as WE have come to know it, starting with the Slavs in the 14th century)... and something that the accounts do not intend at all.
It is unlawful, both under the Law Covenant (which was given AFTER Israel left Egypt)... AND under the NEW Covenant... to literally "own" another man... or woman... as a piece of property. It is NOT unlawful, under either, however, for a man to work off his debt by being another's exclusive servant, to work for his room and board, to work as another's employee... or to employee another, so long as the wage is fair and just. WHEN someone "sold" themselves into slavery, room and board was given but NOT CHARGED AGAINST THE DEBT. And... such bondsmen had to be "freed" every 7 years - they could not "sell" themselves... or be taken into service... for more than 7 years at a time.
That is why U.S. Bankruptcy laws... which follow English common law... allow for discharge of debts. And it used to be that (1) it stayed on the credit report for 7 years (it is now approx. 10; however, foreclosures are still 7), and (2) one could file for it every 7 years (it is now every 6).
I hope this clarifies (especially because I really do want a part-time housekeeper one day and I would hate to think that some here think me a "slave owner").
Peace to you all!