Age of Reason

The period of time commonly called the Age of Reason was about from 1648 to 1789. The autonomy of man's mind to appeal to reason was remarkable less for its doctrines than for the manner of thought. This period lay bare the essential nature of the universe and of man. The thought was English and French in character and challenged the principle of supernatural authority, denied revelation and assaulted the chief dogmas of the faith. Intolerance was discredited and the individual was freed from ecclesiastical control.

The Age of reason repudiated many noble truths but gave man far greater freedom in the pursuit of truth. The problem up to this point was that whatever the church decreed was set down as truth whether it was God's truth or not. True Christian freedom and spiritual revelation consists in part the freedom from the traditions of men and the doctrines of demons. By setting man free from the legalistic narrow-minded thinking of the day, the Age of Reason had shown the inadequacy of conventional thinking and bequeathed to a new age the task of restating the ancient faith in terms intelligible to modern man. Some people call it nature, others call it God. The movement showed an essential continuity with the age of faith. The freedom however came with a price, that of allowing a supremacy over reason apart from true faith, thereby ushering in an age of apostasy where scoffers could arise to provoke false authority void of spiritual truth.
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