A View of the Evidences of Christianity: In Three Parts. Volume 1
This two-volume book by the philosopher and theologian William Paley, published in 1794, was considered so important that it was required reading for Cambridge students (including Charles Darwin) well into the nineteenth century. This classic work of apologetics is divided into three parts in which Paley discusses the historical evidence for Christianity and the miracles of Jesus Christ. He begins volume 1 with the proposition that the original witnesses to Christ's miracles should be believed, because they spent their entire lives in constant danger for what they witnessed. Paley takes on Hume's argument that no miracle can be proved regardless of the amount of evidence with the observation that if one believes in God, then miracles should be expected. Paley's intellectual defence of Christianity was one of the most popular of the day, and his work is considered a direct forerunner of the contemporary theory of intelligent design.