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"The Sabbath’s radicalism should be no surprise given the fact that it originated among a community of former slaves"

Just a reminder to readers, there is no historical evidence for the mass jewish enslavement by egyptians as described in the torah.

There is historical evidence for the Babylonian captivity. Most scholars date the final compilation of the Torah to after that time.

Isn't pretty much any historical text also historical evidence?

Maybe you mean archeological evidence, or corroberating historical evidence?

It's also corroborated by the other Abrahamic texts from what I understand. Let's not just throw out historical sources because of a personal agenda. It's unscientific.

The overwhelming consensus among (secular) biblical scholars and historians alike is that the Egyptian Exodus very likely never occurred.

The Pentateuch is a work of mythology. There is strong textual evidence that it's a compilation of many different stories and sources over the course of many years. It was most likely written centuries after the events it purports to describe. It is full of wildly unrealistic claims.

Isn't pretty much any historical text also historical evidence?

No. People make up stories. Obviously. Harry potter isn't historical evidence of the magical abilities of past humans.

People can make up stories on the witness stand, too. Testimony is still evidence, it just that it needs to be weighed in context by a jury (along with all the other evidence).

In the future, when humans just upload data directly to brains, and nobody remembers what a school is, then Harry Potter absolutely could be used as historical evidence that schools existed and that children went to them. The fantastical bit about learning to be a wizard may be discarded by other evidence (or lack thereof).

If they don't know what a school is, how would they know that Harry Potter is accurate?

Sewers are real. Turtles are real. Is Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles real?

The other evidence for a school must be conclusive. Only from that evidence could you then say Harry Potter's schools were real. It's the other evidence that is evidence. Not harry potter.

Anything in Harry Potter not proven by something else, must be assumed to be fantasy.

The historical evidence is the stories. Just like the Great Flood narrative which was likely over a thousand years old by the time it was first committed to writing, some people, somewhere dealt with some version of the stated events, and it got embellished throughout antiquity to fit the needs of whatever society saw fit to adapt the story. It's likely a flood happened, (which would have been at the level of the 'whole world' of the tribe that experienced it) it's likely an enslavement and subsequent freeing happened, though the actual details are of course lost to history.

I was very curious about this, found an interesting article:


Last paragraph: "In short, the biblical writers invented the idea that the Israelites lived in Egypt in order to impel them to maintain their distinctiveness in Canaan. And the story of servitude in Egypt is an allegory of servitude to Egypt. Our ancestors, among others, did perform forced labor for Egyptian taskmasters, but they were never slaves in Egypt."

And of course the Sabbath did not actually originate with the Jews. The tradition goes back to at least the Bronze Age if not earlier.

If people are interested in a rigorous treatment of ancient economics and their surprising modern relevance consider they should really look into Hudson [1].

[1] https://michael-hudson.com/2018/08/and-forgive-them-their-de...

There was no Jewish enslavement by the Egyptians. Back then there were no Jews. The enslaved people were called Israelites.

I won't argue the historical point, but of the 10 commandments, only the 4th (about the sabbath) was altered the second time it was written, and included a specific note to remember they were slaves as a part of the reason to rest. (Deuteronomy 5:15) But also to give their own servants rest, something the Orthodox Jews seem to have forgotten or ignore by hiring servants to do work for them on the sabbath.

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