David Hume could be seen by some as the Father of theological liberalism, specifically with respect to the veracity of miracles in the eyewitness testimonies of the New Testament Gospels. In An Inquiry Concerning Human Understanding, Hume argued that miracles are impossible, and no sane person would believe such (he says improbable, but he clearly means impossible).
At least one person wasn’t convinced. Richard Whately, a contemporary of Hume, sought to show the inconsistencies and consequences of Hume’s argument. Whatley used a jeu d’ésprit, a clever response of brilliant wit, in order to flesh out his critique of the problems Hume raised. Historic Doubts Relative to Napoleon Bonaparte is Whatley’s response to the disbelief rampant in theological liberalism. In this short book, Whatley applies the exact methods employed to “disprove” the veracity and credibility of the Gospel writers with respect to Jesus in order to “disprove” the existence of Napoleon Bonaparte. It is quite comical, and chillingly true.
When we lose the confidence in the credibility of history, we fall into an abyss of ignorant chaos where nothing can be known.