Eternity Matters | Do androids dream of electric gods?

The Bible teaches that God created humanity in His image. It is fascinating then that in this age of great scientific progress, when all sorts of marvels and wonders of human ingenuity are changing the world, we may now assume we are gods (and many actually believe this). And as gods, we now dream of creating beings in our own image.

This of course is a much loved theme in the world of sci-fi. Think of the Terminator franchise for example (or the Matrix, or TRON, or Avengers: Age of Ultron, or even the Incredibles.) One day, we will create artificial intelligence (AI), and it will destroy us all. Isaac Asimov did realise this would be a possibility which is why his idea of AI incorporates the Three Laws of Robotics. For believers in Evolution, this of course is a necessity.  One of the principles of evolution involves a superior species taking over (often annihilating) an inferior one. Why wouldn’t smarter, faster, stronger, tougher people take over our turf? Heck, even as a species, we do this to our own kind. Possibly in realising this, Ridley Scott’s vision of AI (in the original Blade Runner movie), incorporated the concept of all replicants (artificial humans) only having a four year life span.

Blade Runner was not a huge hit when it was released, but it did have some pretty big questions that makes one think. What makes us “human”? Is it the memories? The ability to socialise? Emotional responses? If emotions is what makes us human, why do we put such emphasis on logic and rationality? What makes us who we are? Will what we are be one day lost in time like tears in the rain?

In many ways, just as the created being is constantly being compared to their creator, the Bible constantly reminds us to look to our own Creator. The Bible teaches us that Jesus is God in human form and we are encouraged to look to him as the example of perfect humanity (Philippians 2:5). In other words, if we are to truly understand what it is to be human, we are to look to Jesus.