This inscription implies that an entity named
Apparently God (or, if you prefer, whoever gave the Ten Commandments) thought the Exodus significant enough to open the Ten Commandments with reference to one event — the Exodus: “I am the Lord your God who brought you out of the Land of Egypt.” Even one who doesn’t believe that God gave the Ten Commandments would have to explain why reference to something that never happened would so move the ancient Israelites. In addition, the two versions of the Ten Commandments — the one from God in Exodus and the one from Moses in Deuteronomy — differ with regard to the reason for Shabbat. The first version’s reason is the Creation (by keeping the Shabbat, we reaffirm weekly that God created the world); the second version’s reason is the Exodus (“You shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt” — and only free people can have a day of rest each week).
So as a story, "Why do we Jews have it?" People don't make up stories like that, certainly not about themselves. So there must be some truth behind the story so that we can be proud of it. There's nothing like a good legend to lift a nation's confidence. That's why most peoples of the world claim to have powerful forebears, like great kings and mighty warriors. "So why do we Jews claim to have come from such lowly and ignoble origins. What purpose could that have served? Why would people invent an embarrassing legend about themselves? Yet we Jews proudly declare a most undignified beginning: we began as a slave nation. Every year we retell the Exodus saga, and say: "We were slaves to Pharaoh in