The Rescue of Joshua Glover and Its Relevance for Today
February 21, 2017

Who was the runaway slave Joshua Glover and what does his story have to do with abortion in Wisconsin and the Gospel of Jesus Christ?

“Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.” – Matt. 25:40

In Milwaukee, over one hundred tiny little boys and girls, made in the Image of God, deserving of our love and protection, are brutally killed every week.

The gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ compels us to seek to establish justice, to plead the cause of the poor and needy and to rescue those sentenced to an unjust death (Prov. 31:8,9).

An incredible story from Wisconsin’s history may be a key in helping us to understand how we as Christians can defend the preborn and protect innocent life in our day. On March 11th, 1854, Joshua Glover, a runaway slave who had settled in Racine, Wisconsin, was arrested and imprisoned by federal marshals under the newly passed federal Fugitive Slave Act. While sitting in a Milwaukee jail, 5,000 Christian people rallied to his defense. He was rescued from jail and then led to safety via the underground railroad. The leader of the rescue, Sherman Booth, was put on trial for violating the federal Fugitive Slave Act. But Wisconsin’s State Legislature and the State Supreme Court ruled that this federal “law” was unconstitutional, protecting Booth from prosecution. They defied the Federal government and their unjust “laws” to protect an innocent person!

It is important to note that this was not anarchy, nor was it reckless law breaking. The United States Federal Government was in violation of God’s Law, which is the basis for all human laws. As Dr. Martin Luther King stated in his Letter from Birmingham Jail, “an unjust law is no law at all”. Through this act of interposition, Wisconsin’s elected officials were restoring law and upholding justice on behalf of the people.

This amazing story serves as an inspiration to all of us for how we can love our neighbors as ourselves and stand against injustice today.

As part of a four day conference we held March 12-15th, we organized a Commemorative Ceremony in Cathedral Park in downtown Milwaukee to remind Wisconsinites of the incredible history of Joshua Glover’s rescue – and to plead with our current elected officials to demonstrate the same godly, principled courage today in defense of the helpless preborn being sentenced to death in our culture.

Former Green Bay Packer Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila (KGB) was our Keynote Speaker and many local pastors were on the roster as well. Those who attended heard testimonies of what God has done and is doing in our city and in our state.  It didn’t end there.  Contact us and learn how you can get involved!

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[…] Supreme Court defied the federal Fugitive Slave Act on behalf of the runaway slave, Joshua Glover, here. See also our articles Abolition and the Constitution, A Criticism of the Legality of Abortion, and […]