Between politics, technology and idolized College professors we have set ourselves on a course to know everything. It is very easy in our world to redefine values, standards, and goals based on our preferences and current cultural norms. Some predict technological singularity (computers knowing everything) before the year 2050. It is intoxicating to consider the brave new world we are already in of cars driving themselves, evolutionary science forging new ideas about origins and living on the cusp of energy that would help us to care for this planet for a very long time.
Like the video above illustrates however, we are not the only ones to predict these kinds of massive changes in our lifetimes or to have supreme confidence in our conclusions at a point in history. These are the same cultural values and conclusions that would have my kids in rear facing car seats till they can vote and simultaneously works for the broader right to commit genocide to an entire generation…
The Bible talks a lot about who we are and the primal two footholds we find ourselves in; pride and idolatry. Pride is when we think more of ourselves than we should and idolatry is when we make anything besides God, ‘ultimate.’ We often mix the two together to place our confidence in something other than God and our pride trusts our own intellect to do so.
The Bible tells us that, “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction (Pr.1:7).” This concept of a right reverence for God’s power is so important it comes up 27 times in the Bible. When we begin our pursuit of knowledge with an underlying assumption that there is no God or that His power is diminished somehow, we create a massive flaw in our pursuit.
Beyond this lapse, we often forget our standing from an eternal perspective. The Bible has no shortage of verses to remind us:
1 Peter 1:24,25
24 for “All flesh is like grass
and all its glory like the flower of grass.
The grass withers, and the flower falls,
but the word of the Lord remains forever.”
“For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”
The words of these texts and many more like them should terrify us when we think about how we often view ourselves as the pinnacle of human evolution and development. There are many greater than us who have come before us and the agism and pride of our generation and historical era is blinding us to our own errors and dangers. To borrow a phrase from church history that a close friend has frequently reminded me of, “we are standing on the shoulders of giants.” To think otherwise is idiocy or what the Bible calls, foolishness.
Solomon was the wisest man to ever live; he built more than we ever will, experienced more than we ever will and did more good (and evil) than we ever will and his summation in the book of Ecclesiastes is, vanity. Without God as the center when we achieve what we pursue we will find it less fulfilling that abundant life God designed us to live in (Jn.10:10).
So our attitude should be humility and repentance. Realizing our error and the divine nature of a holy God. The wonder is that even amidst our wrath deserving, God belittling existence, He offers us hope. He would be absolutely justified to destroy all of us and send us to the eternity without Him that continues the existence without Him after our death that we have pursued so passionately during our brief time on earth…but He doesn’t.
In a pain filled act of total love He offered Himself as a ransom for our debt and now stands and awaits our humble submission to His authority in our lives. If you think you know better…be careful and consider the history of those who have made similar statements.
- “People will never make a bigger plane.” -Boeing Engineer after the first flight of the 247 which held 10 passengers.
- “The phone has too many flaws to be seriously considered a means of communication.” -Western Union statement in 1876.
- “Television won’t last because people will soon get tired of staring at it…” -Lee deForest, 1957 Inventor of Vacuum Tube
- “There is no reason why someone would want a computer in their home.” -Ken Olson, 1977 President and Founder of Digital Ekvipment