Technicism.

11/09/2011

This is the tenth chapter of my chapter-by-chapter review of John Dyer’s “From the Garden to the City.” You can read my other posts here.

Plenty of forms of technology have claimed to be the end all.

Hiram Maxim thought the machine gun would “make war impossible.”  Alfred Nobel assumed that dynamite would “sooner lead to peace than a thousand world conventions.”  Orville Wright believed the airplane would “have a tendency to make war impossible.”  Guglielmo Marconi believed his radio would “make war impossible.”  They have all been wrong.

Obviously looking back we see things like the machine gun ending war, and have to laugh.  Obviously Hiram had no idea what people would do with his invention.  But the sad thing is that this thinking is still alive and well.  Sure, we don’t think a gun will bring world peace, but we believe the next iPhone will be the last one we ever need to buy.  Or we assume that a new laptop will totally revolutionize our lives.

We look to the latest and greatest technology to define who we are.  We use it as an end all rather than a means to an end.

I watched a commercial the other day for a website to backup all your photos, videos, and other things on your hard drive.  At the end of the commercial the narrator basically said the most important reason to back up your photos was “because without your stuff, who are you really?”  Too many times our culture has put technology as the end all.  We believe that accumulating the latest gadget will make our lives better.  We identify with our technology.  We totally forget that our citizenship is in Heaven, not in Silicon Valley.

The end all is Jesus, not an awesome phone.  Jesus will make our lives better, not a new tablet.  

What device has gotten in the way with your walk with God?  When have you had to put away some piece of technology to better connect with God?

Image Courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net / Michelle Meiklejohn

5 responses to Technicism.

  1. What a great way to put this. We tend to think that something else – whatever it is right over the horizon – will change us and fix whatever’s wrong with our lives. But even when we get these new shiny things, we’re still sinful, broken people. Great thoughts.

  2. Totally agree with this post. Technology cannot solve our problems. We can certainly use it to solve many problems, but we can also use it to create new ones. No technology, however, can solve the ultimate problem of our sin nature. Only God can.

    My computer time is definitely a problem, I have to spend time with God first, because once I get online I won’t get off until it is too late for Him.

  3. Good points…and it’s funny how a lot of inventors have had that mindset (Tesla comes to mind, for example). The commercial you mentioned reminds me of a slogan I saw on a baseball hat years ago: “Whoever dies with the most toys wins”. For some reason that makes me think of Psalm 24:1.

  4. lots of distractions here, trying to use technology FOR His glory… i feel with some success and many distractions… lots of background noise and clutter come along with enormous opportunity. Great post!!

  5. I know my iphone has gotten in my way of strengthening my relationship with God. It’s something I have to intentionally not look at until I get my Bible reading in for the day. Good thoughts, Seth.