Have you seen the Matrix movies?
Now a more challenging question:
"Do you think that what happens in the movie (artificially created intelligence takes over and conspires to dominate human intelligence and life) may be a possible threat in the future?
How many think that their professors are really "agents" and part of the conspiracy?
Well, I don't want to burst your bubble, but aside from the trendy graphics, and cutting edge filmmaking technology, the Matrix "story" is based on a very old idea that's been circulating for centuries. Hey, I'm not saying you shouldn't see the movies ... no, go ahead and enjoy great films with cool gadgets but as you do, remember the following.
1. There is Nothing New Under The Sun
That which has been is that which will be,
And that which has been done is that which will be done.
So there is nothing new under the sun.
- Ecclesiastes 1:9
Solomon penned these words 3,000 years ago and they are as true today as they were then. Oh yes there is new technology, new gadgets, new ideas about how things work. But as far as the human condition is concerned; as far as what mankind's essential responsibility is; as far as what is truth and the reality of life, death and what comes after --- there really is nothing new here on earth --- under the sun.
The Matrix movies are a case in point. New visual technology to tell a story that's at least 2000 years old and was a lie when it was originally told to boot!
John the Apostle dealt with this lie, this version of man's condition in his epistles as he dealt with the ancient heresy of Gnosticism in the early church. Let me give you a quick summary of how this lie was told back then:
Gnosticism comes from the Greek word "Gnosis" which means knowledge or to know. In the case of the heresy (or false teaching) John was dealing with, the word referred to the "secret" of special knowledge held by the Gnostic teachers. These teachers taught a variety of themes but one version of the lie was that all souls were trapped in a prison-like material world by an evil divinity. People were kept unaware of their situation and blinded by the carnal pleasures of the material world. Only those with the occult knowledge (Gnosis) of the true state of affairs could transcend this world, this material prison, and enter into a higher reality. They also taught that the "good" divinity dwelling even further above this evil realm helped lost and trapped souls by sending a messenger of truth to reveal this deception.
Are you starting to see where some clever screenwriter got the plotline for the Matrix? There is nothing new under the sun when it comes to the truth of man's condition and the way God has dealt with it. There has been and always will be old lies in new packages to seduce us into discounting God's revelation concerning this world, how it got here, and what will happen in the future. Always new lies that will come along (through movies, books, internet) that will tell you that the Bible is not true. Don't be fooled - by slick movies, hot new books, the latest philosophy or idea promising to reveal secrets or make you as wise as the gods, remember the following…
2. The Result of Sin is death, and all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 6:23; 3:23)
Machines aren't going to take over, sin is what takes over. We are in the prison of sin and many don't know it. We will be judged and condemned because of sin and so many ignore this. We are helpless to overcome sin, absolve ourselves of sin or eliminate sin from our lives or the world.
This is the true state of affairs in the world. The wars, troubles, ignorance, disease and death can be directly or indirectly traced to the impact of our sins in our lives and the lives of others. We don't have to worry about machines taking over, we've already been taken over --- by sins.
We don't live in ignorance of our situation, the word of God has revealed this truth to us and we've known of it for thousands of years. Don't be taken in by anyone pretending to have secret information, code, or understanding ----- we've known the truth for 2000 years:
3. Jesus Christ is the only savior sent by the living God to deal with sin.
Peter declares this fact in the book of Acts 4:12. He says:
And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved.
Now in the first century, the Gnostic teachers tried to twist this truth around to better fit their popular storyline. They claimed that Jesus was the "ONE" sent by the good God; Jesus was the messenger of the truth and they the "guardians" of the secret knowledge. There were several problems with this scenario, not the least of which was that Jesus claimed and proved by His teachings and miracles that He was God and inhabited a human body --- not inferior to any good or evil spirit.
Jesus also taught that the knowledge of the truth is what makes one free and that the simple truth was that we are prisoners of our own sinfulness and that our freedom from guilt and condemnation was obtained through His death on the cross and received by faith not secret knowledge! As a matter of fact, He commanded that this "good news" be shared with the entire world --- not kept secret.
In other words He empowered every trapped soul to find freedom and salvation from sin, not just those who knew and kept the "secrets". While He was here He also taught His messengers that material things had no power to defile us or to overpower us --- including intelligence, artificial or otherwise. John said:
You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.
- I John 4:4
No machine, Alien Force, Evil Spirit Can Take Over A Christian --- Never.
Hey, I loved the Matrix movies; I think the new computer stuff is great --- but I always remember that this is an old fable tied with a 21st century bow. My young brothers and sisters, I leave you with a reminder of how to tell the real from the unreal, the mysteries from the truth, what is sure from what simply shines brightly. In a letter to a young man faced with similar challenges in a complicated world the Apostle Paul writes the following words of instruction. He says,
Yes, and suffering will come to all who decide to live godly lives to please Christ Jesus, from those who hate Him. In fact, evil men and false teachers will become worse and worse, deceiving many, they themselves having been deceived by Satan. But you must keep on believing the things you have been taught. You know they are true for you know that you can trust those of us who have taught you. You know how, when you were a small child, you were taught the Holy Scriptures; and it is these that make you wise to accept God's salvation by trusting in Christ Jesus. The whole Bible was given to us by inspiration from God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives; it straight-tens us out and helps us do what is right. It is God's way of making us well-prepared at every point, fully equipped to do good to everyone.
"Living" New Testament Version
Don't be fooled --- you already know the mystery, you already have the answer, you already have the power to overcome every enemy, every conspiracy, every lie. God bless you.