Slave Mentality

My friend and coworker in the Lord, Jim Bailey, gave a wonderful talk today on Overcoming a Slave Mentality. In this message Jim tells of how the Israelites "physically" came out of the bondage of Egypt's slavery but never quite got free mentally. His text was out of Numbers 13 & 14 and addressed the two mindsets that the Israelis had when the spies came back from the promised land. Jim contrasted the discouraging fear-filled reports of 10 spies to the encouraging faith-filled reports of 2 spies (Joshua and Caleb). Here are a few points that Jim made on the subject of having a slave mentality.


  • assume weakness and are exploited by people who keep them weak,
  • choose not to stand with God and His promises,
  • live with a temporal time-based perspective instead of an eternal one,
  • plan for defeat rather than preparing for success,
  • are governed by past pain and suffering,
  • have unredeemed eyes that see the worst, and
  • spread dispair dragging others down.
Jim ended his message referencing part of Proverbs 30:21-22 that says:
"Under three things the earth quakes, And under four, it cannot bear up: Under a slave when he becomes king"
He spoke of how God chose Moses to lead the Exodus from Israel because he was not raised as a slave and did not have that mental framework. He challenged us to humbly embrace our call to be royal people and not live as slaves. I found the message to be challenging and liberating.


  1. hi.. I came across your blog through Laylas( barbara) blog. I find your posts to be very deeply thought out and stimulating me to reflect.. They kind of make you stop.. ( there alot of crap out there in the blogosphere.)but this one really made me stop..

    I am wondering about how this kind of thinking might relate to "actual" slaves. People in our, ( the wests) economy and kingdom. I am probably leaning quite a bit left of centre. And I am Australian which gives me a slavish "convict" underdog mentality anyway. So.. bare with my bias if you can, and help me to understand your position better.

    Im no scholar, or minister, but Isnt it speculation to say that Moses was Chosen to lead coz he had no slave mentality? Isnt it true to say that It was the experience of Slavery that was part of the Israelites formation as GOds people? If your friends point is accurate, how does this relate to the position of actual slaves in the modern world. Ie: sweat shops in south east Asia? What about what Paul talks about in regard to slavery? or is that something we are to take as purely contextual for his time, with no application to todays different types of "slavery"

    "Slaves:assume weakness and are exploited by people who keep them weak,choose not to stand with God and His promises"

    From the little I know, many slaves in todays world, do not have the option. Slavery, by definition, is not a choice. Slaves assume weakness, coz they either are not aware, or are decieved into believing there is no other option. And I would suggest, that for many "actual slaves" in todays world, there is not an option. they need a liberator..

    What about this.. I dont know where it is, but doesnt God somewhere in Isaiah, admonish his people to be "kind to the alien", coz they knew what it wasa like to be slaves themsleves? Maybe Im grasping at straws.. but your mate also says this..

    "live with a temporal time-based perspective instead of an eternal one, plan for defeat rather than success."

    I guess thats true, but how would you feel if you were a sex slave in the democratic republic of Congo's army? you wouldnt be looking to far ahead, would you? then again, perhaps a hope in the after life might be the only thing you have left.. Now that would change your perspective...

    Its an interesting qustion, the nature of slavery. To be sure. certainly one that is deeply rooted in the biblical narrative. Jesus came to set the captives free... What does that really mean?

  2. Hi Monk,

    Thanks for stopping by and thanks for the kind words. You have some interesting thoughts about slavery – probably different, perspective-wise because of your locality. Jim’s audience, of course, was a Midwest American one and that probably much influenced his message. I think that it is probably true that you can live as a slave physically but not spiritually/mentally/emotionally – but, having no actual experience as a slave, I imagine that it would take an extremely strong person to do so. Thanks again for the feedback.



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