4 years ago
Slavery was rampant in the Arabian Peninsula before the advent of Islam. Moreover; it was never denied in Christianity or in Judaism. It was Islam that laid heavy restrictions on it and enacted laws to free slaves and even implemented moral ethics to treat slaves.
Islam reduced the sources of slavery
The sources of slaves werenumerous at the time of the prophet, among these were:
Islam only permitted slavery from Holy Wars that were launched in defense of the Islamic state because in this case if slaves were freed, there was the threat that they would have returned to launch war against the Muslims. It is noteworthy that Islam kept them until they were ransomed or given in exchange for freeing Muslim prisoners.
Islam put a long-term plan to free slaves
Unlike Christianity and Judaism, that were empathic on taking slaves, Islam set codes to free them. These were holy ordinances that were to be applied on a large scale. Prophet Muhammad (SWS) as well as his companion, Abu Bakr both bought a large number of slaves and freed them.
Abul Ala Mawdudi says
Why didn't Islam abolish slavery at one go?
The social and economic conditions in the Arabian Peninsula were highly connected with slavery. Had Islam abolished slavery all at once, many social and economic problems would have arisen. The slaves themselves wouldn't have had a source of livelihood and also many economic activities would have failed. Islam would have had people who were weak in faith, if their slaves whom they depended on were freed. There was also the possibility that civil wars would have broken out.