1 Tim. 6:1-2 (ESV)
Let all who are under a yoke as slaves regard their own masters as worthy of all honor, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be reviled.  Those who have believing masters must not be disrespectful on the ground that they are brothers; rather they must serve all the better since those who benefit by their good service are believers and beloved.
Teach and urge these things.
It is the scandal of the day. The Bible does not condemn slavery. It is almost ambivalent towards it, and borders on condoning of it. The Bible is, however, against the abuse of other people, slaves included. It was that when slavery and abuse of slaves were synonymous that Christian’s began to campaign against slavery, and rightfully so. It has not stopped the abuse of other humans though. Nor has the outlawing of slavery, really ended the problem of slavery. To this day slavery exists in many guises. There is the outright and despicable trade in sex slaves today, fostering the ubiquitously rampant prostitution across the country. Today’s world celebrates this despicable occupation, the trading in sex slaves. It is down right disgusting to hear high school girls and boys reciting lyrics that praise pimps. The hip hop culture raves about pimping. And there is a sad irony there. They are rejoicing over the modern slave trade.
There is also the more subtle. The problem of sweat shops from which most of us buy our clothing. There is also the problem of illegal immigration. This is a paradox that needs to be addressed by a free society. How is it that it is illegal for a person to work at a perfectly respectable job? These people are given the status of illegal, and the employers are not above exploiting that, paying them less than livable wages, and threatening them with deportation should they object to long hours, or dangerous work. Many of the women are coerced into the sex trade with the same fear. We say we don’t want them here, yet we buy the strawberries they pick and would put the strawberry farmers out of business if they had to hire legal citizens. There has to be a better way.
But we can learn here too. We can learn that as Christians, in what ever vocation we have we wear the name of Christ, and have opportunity to serve him, even as we serve our neighbors, our employers, our jail wardens, or our employees, legal or illegal.