While many people assumed Charles Darwin to be an atheist or agnostic, a letter has surfaced, and been confirmed, documenting Darwin’s beliefs.
A young barrister named Francis McDermott wrote to Darwin on November 23, 1880, with a very unusual request: “If I am to have pleasure in reading your books I must feel that at the end I shall not have lost my faith in the New Testament. My reason in writing to you therefore is to ask you to give me a Yes or No to the question Do you believe in the New Testament.” McDermott promised never to publicize Darwin’s reply in “theological papers.”
The next day Darwin responded: “Dear Sir, I am sorry to have to inform you that I do not believe in the Bible as a divine revelation & therefore not in Jesus Christ as the son of God. Yours faithfully.”