Does God ordain particular social orders?

Here’s a good example of what happens when we believe that God has ordained a particular social order:

Nikolaus Ludwig von Zinzendorf, a German Pietist reformer in the 18th century, addresses a group of Christian slaves on the island of St. Thomas in 1739:

Remain faithful to your masters and mistresses, your overseers and bombas, and… perform all your work with as much love and diligence as if you were working for yourselves. You must know that Christ himself puts each one of his children to work; for the Lord has made everything Himself – kings, masters, servants, and slaves. And as long as we live in this world, everyone must gladly endure the state into which God has placed him and be content with God’s wise counsel.

Thank God for people like William Wilberforce who felt a bit differently.


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