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Sermon Series

"Unshackled" is our powerful and highly-acclaimed sermon series inspired by Twelve Years a Slave, which was created by Dr. Edmund Robb of the 10,000-member Woodlands United Methodist Church in The Woodlands, Texas. Ministers of all faiths are encouraged to use our materials below for ideas in creating their own sermons on tolerance, racial reconciliation, and modern-day slavery in the form of human trafficking.

"Refreshing, insightful, honest."
–Review by Irene Zahos, direct descendant of Solomon Northup

  • Segment One Open or Close

    In this moving sermon called "The American Experience: Slavery in Solomon Northup's Time," Dr. Robb speaks from the heart about his ancestors, who were slave owners and founders of the city of Marshall, Texas, which was located in the county known for having the largest slave population in Texas (near the Louisiana border). He reflects on slavery during Biblical times and discusses the unimaginable suffering caused by the introduction of slavery in the U.S. As slavery divided the nation, it also split the churches, as many Protestant pastors in the South began to defend slavery and the ruling class attempted to justify the institution with their interpretations of the Bible. Dr. Robb notes Jesus' championing of the downtrodden and exploited, and the history of faithful Christians during the 19th century who risked their lives to bring about abolition, as well as ministers during the Civil Rights era who fought for equality and justice in the face of violence.

  • Segment Two Open or Close

    In this eye-opening segment called "Slavery in Our Time," Dr. Robb speaks about modern-day slavery in the form of human trafficking. There are over twenty million victims of human trafficking around the globe, suffering from practices ranging from forced child labor in the Congo to sexual exploitation on the streets of America. Dr. Robb discusses slavery in the context of Scripture and provides examples of people and organizations that combat human trafficking. For names and descriptions of top-tier foundations fighting human trafficking that you can assist, see our Foundations page.

  • Interview Open or Close

    Dr. Robb interviews Frank Eakin, son of the late Dr. Sue Eakin. Frank is the publisher of Dr. Eakin's edition of Twelve Years a Slave, as well as the audiobook narrated by Louis Gossett, Jr. He also produces non-profit projects related to racial reconciliation and human trafficking awareness.

  • Sermon Kit Open or Close