Rape is bad, but not being able to go to church? Now that's a sin. Under slavery, religion becomes an instrument of evil. She reminds us that slaveholders tried to use religion to keep their slaves in check. After Nat Turner’s insurrection, the elite whites hire a free black man to deliver sermons to their slaves on the importance of being obedient. Jacobs aimed her anti-slavery message in Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl at northern Christian women, so it was important for her to show slavery makes heathens out of black people. Maybe, she suggests, white women could spend more time abolishing slavery and less time funding foreign missions.
Jacobs appeals to her northern religious readers by adopting a religious, pious narrative persona.
Incidents suggests that slave-holders often manipulated religion to suit their own ends.