A.I. and the Church

Clint Rogers


Clint Rogers


October 25, 2022

A.I. and the Church

When you hear the term “artificial intelligence”, what is it that comes to mind? You may think of advanced robotics, complex systems, or even intuitive software. However, if you’re a movie buff, you may think about the film I, Robot.

I, Robot is set in the year 2035 in a futuristic society where robots and artificial intelligence have become the norm. These A.I. robots serve humanity by following particular laws that protect human life. The main character, Del, is a detective whose tragic past left him terrified of these machines and made him pretty skeptical about their overall role in society. He sets out to solve a case in which he believes a robot took the life of a human. In this movie, we witness what happens when powerful machines exist without the capability to empathize and reason through emotion. 

A protagonist arises in the movie — Sonny — a robot specifically designed to feel emotions, ignore the set Laws of the robots, and even dream dreams. Sonny works alongside Detective Del to take down the emotionless schemes of VIKI (the central artificial intelligence computer) to destroy the human race. They prevail in shutting down VIKI and saving humanity from extinction at the hands of artificial intelligence.

Okay, this movie was pretty epic for its time, but can you see how I, Robot set an eerie stage for how we view artificial intelligence today? 

When we think of other entities (outside of humanity) possessing intelligence, it can send a bit of a shiver up our spine. We may view this technology as unnatural and even a threat to the overall goodwill of our society. 

Fortunately for us, we aren’t living in a 2035 dystopian society with robots on the loose. We live in 2022 where we have learned to integrate artificial intelligence into our lives in a helpful and even meaningful way. 

Don’t believe us? Let’s just take a step back and actually define what A.I. is before we get too spooked. According to Oxford Dictionary, artificial intelligence is “The theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.”

In case you were wondering, A.I. doesn’t just exist in robots — it is everywhere! If you utilize any sort of digital technology, you are encountering countless methods of artificial intelligence at every turn. Here are a few areas A.I. is present:

  • Autocorrect
  • GPS navigation
  • Search engines
  • Social media & streaming service algorithms
  • Facial recognition
  • Digital assistance
  • Online chat boxes
  • Translation tools
  • Predictive search (Google, YouTube, etc.)
  • Email
  • Self-checkout
  • Online banking

This list could go on and on and it goes to show that A.I. is truly all around us. It truly makes it possible for us to have the ease we currently have with all sorts of technology. A.I. helps us get where we need to go, become more efficient in our searches, and even speak to others in another language.

One of the greatest benefits of utilizing artificial intelligence in our digital media is its ability to curate content that is relevant to the audience member. A.I. can sift through specific data at lightning speed. It looks at all of the interests, demographics, and specs of individuals and can custom-curate content that fits their needs. Truthfully, A.I. can personalize messages much more effectively and efficiently than humans ever could.

While this may seem impossible that A.I. can truly know a person, it can know enough to point them in the right direction. For example, chat boxes utilize A.I. technology to communicate with digital users. The system picks up on specific keywords and can use them to answer questions or refer them to someone who can answer the questions. 

Digital assistants like Siri and Alexa can do the same thing. They can predict behaviors based on data that has been collected from all of the digital technologies you utilize (social media activity, online shopping, etc.) These technologies are anything but perfect, but they operate on highly sophisticated software that enables the A.I. to communicate with the user and customize their experience. 

So if we use A.I. so much in our daily lives, why is there such a negative connotation surrounding it? 

With each advancement of technology, we often dismiss the helpfulness of something because it goes against our preferences. Or even like Detective Del, we fear what we do not fully understand, so we completely reject it out of this place of terror.

The fear of technology is something that has plagued the church, especially for generations. 

Throughout our history, the church has been hesitant to embrace new technologies. There was even a time when introducing musical instruments into the church was a total faux pas! In addition to this, some sects of Christianity reject all technology in its entirety. They have instead opted to cloister and stick to a minimal, advancement-free type of life.

While it is certainly easier to reject embracing or learning the new, operating out of fear or worry has never and will never serve the church well. 

The church is not called to stay in our comfort zone

The church is not called to stay paralyzed by fear

The church is called to take big steps of faith and overcome fear

Can A.I. be used to serve the church? If you fear artificial intelligence you may say an unhesitant “no.” But if you are someone who wants to utilize every tool at your disposal to seek and save the lost, embracing A.I. should be on your to-do list. 

To embrace A.I. technology we must be open to learning more about it. You can do this by reading the latest tech news on A.I. and the different ways it is being utilized in the digital sphere. It is also important for us to embrace these rising technologies and discover ways they could serve the church. 

At PMF Creative, we are all about embracing new technologies. We have an exclusive program using our A.I. outreach system developed by our team to reach people more effectively.

If you want to be a part of this invitation-only program, book a call here: https://www.pmfcreative.com/contact

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