Monday, December 12, 2016
Thomas Paine's Religious Pain
Author, Speaker, Instructor, Radio Host
A reader sent me an email asking about the religiosity of Thomas Paine, the author of Common Sense, which sparked the American Revolution. While Paine was an important figure in the founding of the United States, his journeys led him away from America as he pursued the teachings of utopianist Jean Jacques Rousseau. The following is my response to the email inquiry:
Thomas Paine, while raised in the church, later in his life became either an atheist, or agnostic. During that time period he moved to France to support the French Revolution, and wrote a book* against Christianity. While the book was very confrontational against the Christian Religion, and the secular left of today holds it up as an important work of the time, it is said that Paine, on his deathbed, regretted his falling away from God, and reaffirmed his faith in Christ as he drew his final breaths.
* Thomas Paine's anti-religious book was titled The Age of Reason.
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