We have little information on who invented the fore-and-aft rig to sail against the wind. Some historians think the technique may have originated as early as the second century after Christ. What we do know, however, is that this invention eliminated the galley and slave labor. We also know that the Bible was the intellectual and moral force that made slavery abhorrent… [T]he Bible played the most important role in promoting technology that liberated slaves. We also know that, back then, secularism did not exist. And neither pagan philosophers or temples promoted or celebrated technology that emancipated slaves. The Bible, in contrast, began to be written because God heard the cries of Hebrew slaves. Rodney Stark explains that most of the ancient philosophers supported slavery because they had “no concept of sin to put teeth in their judgments and no revelation from which to begin” critiquing slavery, Stark continues:
“Although it has been fashionable to deny it, anti-slavery doctrines began to appear in Christian theology soon after the decline of Rome and were accompanied by the eventual disappearance of slavery in all but the fringes of Christian Europe.”
. . . A culture will not invest in wheelbarrows or pumps if its decision makes feel that there is a surplus of time and woman-or manpower. Only a society with a theological climate that values human dignity begins using technology as a force for human emancipation and empowerment.
–Vishal Mangalwadi, The Book that Made Your World: How the Bible Created the Soul of Western Civilization
While slavery was common to all civilizations, as well as to peoples considered uncivilized, only one civilization developed a moral revulsion against it, very late in hits history…not even the leading moralists in other civilizations rejected slavery at all…. Moreover, within Western civilization, the principle impetus for the abolition of slavery came first from very conservative religious activists – people who would today be called ‘the religious right.’…this story is not ‘politically correct’ in today’s terms. Hence it is ignored, as if it never happened.