Flora Trebi-Ollennu
13 min readMay 3, 2024


Deliverance and Healing from a Diseased Mentality Inherited from Slave-Trading

Joseph’s brothers thought they had sold him into slavery, but they did not realize they had sold the future of their community into slavery. Sometimes the choices we make come to bite not only us, but generations after us even though God in his mercy uses them as part of his divine plan. Afterall, he knows the choices people make and will make, as well as the consequences, and uses all for his glory. “As the sun was about to set, a deep sleep fell upon Abram, and a great dark dread descended upon him. And He [God] said to Abram, “Know well that your offspring shall be strangers in a land not theirs, and they shall be enslaved and oppressed four hundred years; but I will execute judgment on the nation they shall serve, and in the end, they shall go free with great wealth … And they shall return here in the fourth generation, for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet complete” (Genesis 15:12–14,16).

The effects of a community’s sins do have significant impact on the mentality of its future members. Christian writers like Rayshawn Graves speaks to this in his article, GUILTY FOR YOUR ANCESTORS’ SINS, that, “While people might not be personally culpable for the sin of those who came before them, and therefore cannot repent for their specific individual sins, it is possible that they are still connected to the sins of their ancestors through the corrosive effects of their sin, either in themselves or in the larger community or society. This corruption can be seen both actively and passively: active perpetuation of sin and its effects by those who come after and passive perpetuation by not correcting sin’s lasting effects.” And thus, the mentality of the African has been conditioned for the worse by the long process (800 years and more) of slave-trading their own to other races. Indeed, not every family, clan or tribe was involved, but it is important to understand that the mentality of communities is mostly shaped and conditioned by the actions of powerful leaders which spread and take root.

And so not long after the death of Joseph and his brothers, the Israelites were subjected to slavery in Egypt, the land that had saved them from famine in Canaan. Their descendants would be slaves for over 400 years! So, Africans sold their own into slavery, and by that, sold the continent into slavery through colonialism, and its consequences have been unfortunate for Africans across the world. And under the slave-masters whip in Egypt, Israel cried for a deliverer. And God heard, because he had a special plan for them in his divine agenda.

And Africans are crying for a deliverer. And God has heard, because he has a special place for them in his divine plan in these Last days. As Africa, represented as Egypt earlier, has remained the center of idolatry and witchcraft, God wanted to impress upon Africans his supremacy even through their ill-conceived slave-trade that opened the door to colonialism, that He is the only God who can destroy their idolatrous beliefs and save them for the work he has assigned them in his Last days agenda. The African Case is God’s special case. It happened to no other race! God desires to deliver the people of Africa, and to heal them in a supernatural way to equip and fit them for the work he has assigned them with regards to the saving of the nation of Israel in these last days.

We all know from experience that healing is required when one has been wounded physically and/or mentally (spiritual). Deliverance is required to restore something that has been stolen and replaced with something of regressive value. Many times, Jesus asked, what would you like me to do for you, even though he could see that the person was sick and needed healing. Jesus is asking you, representing your community as you read this, ‘what would you like me to do for your specific African community? Your community can accept that the slave-trading of your ancestors has wounded you in so many ways so he can heal you. The evil consequences of their slave-trading have clung to us like the tomb clothes on Lazarus, restricting our upward mobility in the global economy, but Jesus has power to remove them and set us free. What was good about Lazarus being brought back to life and yet bound in tomb clothes that prohibited his mobility?

Let’s Pray for Healing and Deliverance from the Inherited Diseased Mentality

As the adage goes, “Watch your actions, they become habits; watch your habits, they become character; watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.” This is also true of how a mentality of a people is developed: the actions of slave-trading your own to other races for a short while, became a habit for eight centuries, and this habit became a character, and produced a particular strain of mentality, an unhealthy and retrogressive one.

Unhealthy Mentality Inherited — 1 Pray and Replace

Slave-trading ripped the ‘soul’ out of our traditional leadership — they denied their contribution to the intertribal woes and instability on the continent as they duped, exploited, and overburdened their own tribes in pursuit of acquiring more slaves from other tribes to sell to the Arab first, and second to the European. Do you see this trait loudly in current African leadership? And it seems this ‘soullessness’ is still celebrated, as Kevin Sieff pointed out in his article, “An African country reckons with its history of selling slaves:”

Unlike some African countries, Benin has publicly acknowledged — in broad terms — its role in the slave trade. In 1992, the country held an international conference sponsored by UNESCO, the U.N. cultural agency, that looked at where and how slaves were sold. In 1999, President Mathieu Kérékou visited a Baltimore church and fell to his knees during an apology to African Americans for Africa’s role in the slave trade. But what Benin failed to address was its painful internal divisions. Kérékou’s apology to Americans meant little to citizens who still saw monuments to de Souza across this city.

“This is still a country divided between the families of the enslaved and the slave traders,” said Olabiyi Babalola Joseph Yai, a professor of history and linguistics who taught for years at the University of Florida and worked for UNESCO in Paris before returning to his native Benin. “But the elite don’t want to talk about what happened here.”

Pray that God will command a deep searching of hearts for all our traditional leaders, kings, chiefs, clan heads, family heads and traditional vocations’ heads, as well as current politicians.

2 Chronicles 30:9 — “For if you return to the Lord, your brothers and your children will find compassion with their captors and return to this land. For the Lord your God is gracious and merciful and will not turn away his face from you, if you return to him.”

Jeremiah 31:18–19 — “I have surely heard Ephraim (African traditional leadership) bemoaning himself (themselves): ‘You have chastised me, and I was chastised, Like an untrained bull; Restore me, and I will return, For You are the LORD my God. Surely, after my turning, I repented; And after I was instructed, I struck myself on the thigh; I was ashamed, yes, even humiliated, Because I bore the reproach of my youth.’

Unhealthy Mentality Inherited — 2 Pray and Replace

Our traditional leaders and merchants handed over the bargaining power of our worth to the Arab first, and second, to the European through slave-trading — “And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.” (Numbers 13:33). Certainly, this trauma disrupted normal economic growth in our communities, and we also developed an inferiority complex and a victim mentality.

Pray that God will change this frame of reference to who we are through the lens of the Bible instead of how other races view us because of our ancestors’ slave-trading.

Psalm 139:14 — “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful; I know that full well.”

Isaiah 32:17 — The fruit of that righteousness will be peace; its effect will be quietness and confidence forever.

Isaiah 40:31 — “But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint.”

Psalm 103:2–4 — “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy.”

Unhealthy Mentality Inherited — 3 Pray and Replace

Slave-trading impaired the judgment of our leadership. The greed for gain impaired their thinking abilities. Preoccupation with slave-trading, they were mostly oblivious to concerning happenings in other parts of the world. They read all the signposts on the way wrong just as an impaired driver does, and they crushed the destiny of their people into a ditch. A disoriented mentality only brewed myopia, in the ditch. They missed the ‘visitation,’ similar to what Jesus prophesied about Jerusalem in Luke 19:41–44, “As he came near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, “If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. Indeed, the days will come upon you when your enemies will set up ramparts around you and surround you and hem you in on every side. They will crush you to the ground, you and your children within you, and they will not leave within you one stone upon another, because you did not recognize the time of your visitation from God.”

Pray that the Holy Spirit will repair and reorient these inherited thinking patterns in both our traditional and political leadership. When Jesus had finished weeping over Jerusalem in Luke 19:41–47, his next step was to rid the temple of robbers, and then he proceeded to teach there in the temple in Jerusalem. Pray that God will rid our leadership of robbers and raise teachers, whose powerful teachings will release healing and restore a healthy mentality with good judgment on the ones he appoints. Pray that God will create a hunger in our traditional and political leadership to seek for wisdom. Pray that God’s love will abound in their hearts for the communities God has entrusted into their care, as Paul states in Philippians 1:9, “And this I pray, that your LOVE MAY ABOUND yet more and more in knowledge and IN ALL JUDGMENT.” Pray that through this process this myopic mentality will be replaced with farsighted mentality in Africans everywhere.

Proverbs 1:7 (NIV) “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” –

Proverbs 3:5–6 (NIV) “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”

Jeremiah 17:9 (NIV) “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?”

James 1:5 (NIV) “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” –

Proverbs 13:16, (NIV) “All who are prudent act with knowledge, but fools expose their folly.”

Proverbs 13:20 (NIV) “Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.”

Unhealthy Mentality Inherited — 4 Pray and Replace

Our leadership developed a dependency mentality instead of an independent one. Slave-trading sucked the initiative and self-determination, right out of the hands of our leadership and communities. Slave-trading became the industry instead of supporting industry as was in other ancient economies like Rome. And the season for industrialization, not welcome, skipped the African continent.

Pray and thank God that through the light of the gospel, God is restoring the initiative spirit lost through the murky waters of slave-trading by our ancestors.

Pray that as God restores and elevates the African, we will not spite Europeans but rather develop a heart of gratitude and humility towards God. Afterall the gospel spread and became rooted in most of Africa through their efforts and not Ethiopia, though a Christian nation from close to the beginning of Christianity. Healing and deliverance grow through forgiving those we believe contributed in some way to the crisis in our health. In fact, healing opens our spiritual eyes to assess events and situations in our lives more holistically.

Pray that the initiative spirit God has released will grow by leaps and bounds in a healthy way, void of greed and voodoo, which characterised the slave-trading of our ancestors.

Unhealthy Mentality Inherited — 5 Pray and Replace

A mental disorder, product over process, spread among communities quickly and stunted the creativity and innovation in our communities. Catch humans and sell was a quicker route to riches and status. However, it is through the crucible of ‘process’ and not the quest for ‘product’ that character and vision are forged for the future. But this was lost on our ancestors due to slave-trading and this mentality has become rooted in the attitudes of subsequent generations.

Let’s pray that the comment below will cease to be the mindset of the current generation of Africans because many doubt if the African today is any different from those who traded in slaves. “Ironically, and perhaps unfortunately, there are still elements in Africa which suggest that if the slave trade were re-instituted today there would be willing participants. This is independent of the Libyan Arab auctioning trade the whole world saw a few months ago. Don’t believe me? Boko Haram offered to sell the girls they kidnapped. What would the Fulani Herdsmen do if they were offered money to capture and not kill the seemingly unarmed people they massacre? A slave trade cannot last for centuries without the tacit and even explicit participation of willing parties on both sides. I submit (again) that after all is said and done; the trade could be reinstated if certain elements were offered enough money.” (Petacg’s comment in response to Kevin Seif’s article in the Washington Post, January 2018, “An African country reckons with its history of selling slaves.”

Pray that a distinct curriculum that teaches the value of each African will be developed and taught in all schools in African communities to stem this ancient appetite for selling slaves. “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27.

Pray that flood gates of creativity and innovation will open into every African community, not to glorify self, Satan, or the world but to glorify God, our Maker. Exodus 35:31–32, “And he has filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills — to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood and to engage in all kinds of artistic crafts.”

Unhealthy Mentality Inherited — 6 Pray and Replace

Disorders of suspicion, mistrust, and despising one another festered between various tribes and among members of clans, as people could kidnap unsuspecting members of their community for sale as slaves under the guise of misconduct or other crimes. Even in present day Benin, Kevin Sieff writes in his article, “An African country reckons with its history of selling slaves”: In villages where people were abducted for the slave trade, families still ask reflexively when they hear a knock on the door whether the visitor is “a human being” or a slave raider. (Kevin Sieff, January 2018, Washington Post).

Pray for a spirit of trust, unity, and endearment among African tribes on the continent and African blocs in the diaspora. Pray that a special curriculum will be developed and taught in all schools and communities of Africans on how to develop trust between and among various tribes and blocs.

Pray that children (adults too) born in advanced economies in the African diaspora will not despise those on the continent and the Caribbean. Pray that children (adults too) in the African Diaspora will be taught to develop a healthy relationship with those on the Continent. Pray that the Christian Church will be at the fore nurturing these healthy relationships through effective discipleship and holy lives.

Leviticus 19:17–18 (ESV) — “You shall not hate your brother in your heart, but you shall reason frankly with your neighbor, lest you incur sin because of him. You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.”

Proverbs 26:24–26 ESV — “Whoever hates disguises himself with his lips and harbors deceit in his heart; when he speaks graciously, believe him not, for there are seven abominations in his heart; though his hatred be covered with deception, his wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.”

Isaiah 30:15 — “For thus said the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, “In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.” But you were unwilling,”

Pray for the healing of Africa’s conscience (the continent). Pray that God will cleanse with the blood of Jesus our consciences defiled by the slave-trading atrocities of our ancestors, (1 Timothy 4:2; Titus 1:15; 1 Corinthians 8:7 & Hebrews 10:22). Here is an example of how Nwaubani and her family confronted this head on: “Last July, my father’s cousin Sunny, a professor of engineering, visited my parents to discuss another concern: a growing enmity in our family. Minor arguments had led relatives to stop speaking to one another. Several had become estranged from the family. “We always have one major disagreement or division or the other,” my father’s cousin Samuel told me. My cousin Ezeugo was not surprised by the worrying trend. “Across Igbo land, wherever there was slave trade with the white people, things never go well,” he said. “They always have problems there. Everybody has noticed it.” My relatives thought that our family’s history was coming back to haunt us.” (Nwaubani, My Great-Grandfather, the Nigerian Slave-Trader, 2018, New Yorker)

Ezekiel 37:22–28 — “and I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king over them all; they shall no longer be two nations, nor shall they ever be divided into two kingdoms again. They shall not defile themselves anymore with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions; but I will deliver them from all their dwelling places in which they have sinned, and will cleanse them. Then they shall be My people, and I will be their God.”

God richly bless you as you endeavour to intercede for everyone of African descent to be set free to fully live for Christ Jesus, our only Lord and Savior, so we can fulfill our assignment as a people God has planned to use in His Last Days Agenda.

Beyond the Decade Vision is led and implemented by Beyond the Decade Coalition. To learn more about the Coalition, its members, and its mandate, visit



Flora Trebi-Ollennu

Flora Trebi-Ollennu is both a nonfiction and fiction writer. She writes for all age groups: children, youth and adults.