Introduction to Deism


Enlightenment deism began in 1624 when Herbert of Cherbury published his first book. Famous deists included Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Thomas Paine, as well as Voltaire and Rousseau.

The vast majority of the Enlightenment deists were not secular figures trying to banish God from their lives. They cared deeply about God and their relationship with God.

Many deists, including Ben Franklin and Thomas Jefferson, revered Jesus. Many thought he did miracles. But he did not save humanity from original sin. He only taught deism, that is love of God and benevolence to other people. They were Christian deists.

These writings are by Dr. Joseph Waligore who has published three articles on deism
Deism started in 1624 when  Herbert of Cherbury published his book On Truth.


It had adherents in England, America, France, Germany, and other European countries.


It was not a secular philosophy based on Newtonian science or John Locke’s empiricism, but was based on returning to the Greek philosophers’ view of God as totally good and fair.

The majority of deists believed in supernatural phenomena such as miracles, revelations, and other forms of divine activity in the world.

Many Enlightenment deists considered themselves Christian.  These Christian deists included Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and J0hn Adams.

4 Responses to Introduction to Deism

  1. Nicholas Deates says:

    well done. beautifully written,informative. loved it. cant wait for more.

  2. Paul Frederick, the Writer says:

    As a modern, warm Deist I appreciate the elucidation on natural religion. These caused me to publish a book that has stood the test of time since 2007. I only add that we don’t obviate God’s easy capability in reaching everyone as His special onus.

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