A New Mindset: Christ in the Home
simply address an institution that happened to be a significant element of ancient society. For various reasons, some theological and some practical, the New Testament writers do not attack the institution of slavery as such. (See the Introduction to Philemon, 369–78, for more on this point.) The household codes are practical and specific: they require believers who occupy these roles to relate to each other in certain ways. Whether those roles should continue or are endorsed by the author or by God is simply not in view. Other biblical texts make clear enough that marriage (wives and husbands) and the family (children and fathers) are to endure as long as this world lasts. There is nothing even approaching any such endorsement of slavery, however.