Analysis of The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine

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Throughout “The Age of Reason,” Thomas Paine gives several examples for why he is opposed to Christianity. Before I began reading this essay, I was absolutely positive that I was going to disagree with every point that Paine had to make and every opinion that he expressed. It did not take long for me to realize that I had made the wrong assumption. There was more than one occasion while reading “The Age of Reason” that I discovered I actually agreed with Paine's opinion/belief. This encouraged me to read “The Age of Reason” once again, but this time with an open-mind. I decided that I would also take notes on the similarities and differences between Paine's worldview and mine. I came across my first disagreeance with Paine a few sentences into the reading. Paine states, “All national institutions of churches. . .appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit” (Timmerman and Hettinga 95). First of all, I do not agree that churches are human inventions as Paine does. I believe that the church is made up of the body of Christ and that Christ gave himself up for the church. The church is set up to love, protect, serve, fellowship, and connect. After Paine states how he feels about the church, he soon begins to discuss his views on the word revelation. Paine says that “it is a contradiction in terms and ideas, to call anything a revelation that comes to us at second-hand, either verbally or in writing (Timmerman and Hettinga 96). One example of a revelation in the Bible that Paine gives is whenever Moses receives the ten commandments from God. Paine believes that the children of Israel had every right not to take these commandments seriously since only Moses receive... ... middle of paper ... ...ot be accomplished by man himself. Paine on the other hand believes “there is no such thing as a miracle” (Timmerman and Hettinga 104). Paine says that it is easier to believe that a man is telling a lie than to believe in a miracle. In a way, I do agree that it is much easier to believe that a man is telling a lie than to believe in a miracle; however, I know what God is capable of doing, and I know that He is performing miracles every day. After reading “The Age of Reason,” I have found that Paine simply rejected faith. He wanted evidence before he would believe anything. He used reasoning to shape his beliefs. Although there are few opinions of Paine's that I agree with, I disagree with his overall worldview. Paine would never accept the word of God; to him it was fallible. I fully accept the word of God, and I strive to live my life according to what it says.
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