Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and John Newton

William Wilberforce, born into wealth and influence, came to believe slavery was a “national crime”—for which all Englishmen were responsible! He wrote:

“In the Scripture, no national crime is condemned so frequently and few so strongly as oppression and cruelty. . .” citing Ezekiel, Zephaniah, and Amos, ultimately igniting an unprecedented movement to abolish slavery in the British empire.

John Newton’s hymn, “Amazing Grace,” associated with the abolitionist movement and William Wilberforce, was written by a former slave trader who become an Anglican minister.

Newton wrote the now-famous hymn while working on a sermon on 1 Chronicles 17.

On July 26, 1833, the Slavery Abolition Act was passed—just three days before the death of William Wilberforce.

Engage with the Bible—in its influence over the centuries!


More Book Minute Features

March 19, 2018

Women’s History: St. Teresa of Calcutta

Saint Teresa of Calcutta, considered one of the greatest humanitarians of the twentieth century, received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. In 1946, Moth...
March 16, 2018

Corita Kent: Pop Art and the Bible

Pop art and the Bible? Created by a woman wearing a habit? Sister Corita Kent’s silkscreen pop art has been compared to Andy Warhol’s more famous work...
March 15, 2018

Beware the Ides of March

Today recalls the famous quote from William Shakespeare’s, Julius Caesar, warning him to be careful—to “BEWARE THE IDES OF MARCH!" William Shakespeare...