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In pagan times slaves who escaped and sought sanctuary at a holy temple would not be returned to their masters if they had a justifiable complaint.When the Empire became Christian, escaped slaves could seek refuge in a church, but they would always be returned to their masters, whether they had a justifiable complaint or not.
Many of the collars feature Christian symbols such the chi-rho christogram or a Christian cross, showing that the slave owners were Christians.When Christian slaves in the early Asian Church suggested that community funds might be used to purchase their freedom, they were soon disabused of their hopes, a line supported by one of the greatest Church Fathers (Ignatius of Antioch.).He declared that their ambition should be to become better slaves, and they should not expect the Church to gain their liberty for them.The Christian Roman Empire actively helped slave owners to recover fugitive slaves, and punished anyone giving them shelter. In 650 Pope Martin I condemned anyone teaching slaves about freedom or encouraging them to escape their bonds.A Church Council of Châlons in 813 decreed that slaves belonging to different owners could not marry without their owners' consent.Looking at the relevant passages it is clear that the Bible does indeed endorse slavery.
In the Old Testament God approved the practice and laid down rules for buyers and sellers (Exodus 21:1-11, Leviticus ).
Exodus -21 If a slave is gored by a bull, it is the master, not the slave, who is to be compensated (Exodus ).
Time and time again the Old Testament confirms that slaves are property and their lives are of little consequence.
We know of other slave owning Christians in various ways, for example one, Ausonius ,recorded having tattooed his recaptured runaway slave on the forehead (the significance seems to have been guilt about tattooing, because tattooing was banned by the bible) Pagan slaves who wanted to become Christians required permission from their masters.
For many centuries, indeed right up to recent times, servile birth was a bar to Christian ordination, and the Church confirmed the acceptability of slavery in many other ways.
In 362 AD a Church Council at Gangra in Asia Minor excommunicated anyone encouraging a slave to despise his master or to withdraw from his service.