This article suggests that the metaphor of Paul as seed-picker who gathers dirt from the market in Athens (Acts 17:18) is part of the broad slave metaphor found in Greco-Roman literature and in the New Testament. The stigma of depersonalization, desocialization, and religious marginalization is attached to enslavement. Slaves are excluded from authentic personhood. The article explores the rhetoric in Paul’s Areopagus speech. It demonstrates Pauline influence on the narrative in Luke-Acts. The essence of the Areopagus speech is the universal unity of hu-manity and the life-giving effect of the resurrection belief. Building on the notions of fictive kinship and quasi-kinship the article compares the practice of sacral manumission for slaves with that of manumissio in ecclesia.