Immanuel Kant, the Enlightenment, and the Old Testament

There was a period in certain parts of Europe called (with a passel of hubris in the eyes of this child) the Age of Reason or the Enlightenment. These things do not simply spring up on their own, but are developed from religious, cultural, intellectual, political, and other cultural views that happened before.

The Enlightenment was by no means unified. Some had a fondness for Classical things (Socrates himself was particularly missed by Voltaire). Some wanted knowledge without the senses, others believed knowledge could be achieved by reason alone. This period is sometimes considered a triumph of atheism (indeed, the bloody French Revolution was the culmination). Erasmus Darwin, the grandfather of Charles, was an atheist who lived at this time. His Zoonomia was unfluential to Charlie.

The Enlightenment was not unified, and had differing views from atheism to biblical. Kant lived in this time and was influenced to deny the Bible.
Immanuel Kant by Johann Gottlieb Becker, 1768, modified with PhotoFunia
Criticism of the Bible was widespread at this time with efforts to find excuses to intellectualize it away. (For that matter, some of the "enlightened" were rejecting Christianity and embracing neo-paganism.) For lovers of reason, they seemed to be quite arbitrary and inconsistent in their methods. Immanuel Kant was supposedly raised in a Christian home, but his own apostasy contributed to that of others. He is famous for rejecting and "reasoning" away the first three chapters of Genesis.
Given Immanuel Kant’s seminal role at the outset of the Enlightenment, it is important to notice how and when he interacted with Genesis 1–3. Although Kant is largely remembered today for his philosophy, he began his career as a theologian and a scientist. In fact, it was the interaction between his theology and his science that provided the necessary foundation for his critical philosophy. I propose that Kant’s rejection and subsequent reinterpretation of Genesis 1–3 was the sine qua non of his contribution to the Enlightenment.

To finish reading, click on "Kant’s religion of reason and the reinterpretation of Genesis 1–3." Something I found in my research to be extremely interesting and helpful is, "What was the Enlightenment, and what impact did it have on Christianity?"