We have all had the experience of being on the phone with “someone” called “customer service.” A common experience would be for the person on the line to apologize for the wait which you are about to endure. In these days when we are becoming increasingly aware that machines are rapidly replacing people, we may come to the realization, as I did, that the apology you just received was automated. It very well have been a digitally produced sound spoken by “no one,” addressed to any old person on the other end of the line (that, by the way, is you), and there is absolutely nothing personal at all in the exchange. It is an automated apology, and the only person who is sorry is you.
We don’t know yet all of which robots may eventually be capable. I read that they are now being desired to provide company for elderly and lonely people. They are coded to respond properly with words of affection, care, and concern. They can offer a loving touch. Oh, except for one thing. They are incapable of affection, care, and concern. And their touch cannot be loving. They are designed to mimic was is truly human. But be sure of this. They are not truly human, and true humanity cannot be mimicked.
But the question that begs asking is this: Do you respond in less than human ways when you apologize? Do you fake your expressions of affection, care, and concern? Is your “loving touch” really something else, something less? In such a case, you are more like an automated machine than a human. But don’t miss this point: While that machine, as machine, is not morally responsible for its actions, you, as a human created in the image of God and thus accountable ultimately to Him, - you are morally responsible.
There may be many things at stake as we progress into our “Brave, New World” (a reference that Albert Mohler makes regularly on this podcast, and an important book to read as its prophetic viewpoint becomes reality in our own day). Even more prophetic would be these words from 2 Timothy: “holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power.” Automated apologies, and the like, are not the product of a powerful Spirit.
And one other note: Is it possible as we begin the act and talk and think like robots (mimicking the very machines that were designed to mimic us), that we think of God in that way as well? Note these verses, and notice the correction that we need:
“I sought the LORD, and He answered me, And delivered me from all my fears. They looked to Him and were radiant, And their faces will never be ashamed. This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him And saved him out of all his troubles.” (Psalms 34:4–6 NAS95)