Recently a Christian leader I respect and follow on Facebook commented,
Chat GPT is the most biased tool used to propagate anti-christian worldview. Be careful. It rarely gets stuff correct, always adding a slight tint meant to demean Christianity.
That hasn’t been my experience. Of course ChatGPT is not a Christian tool and thus won’t give Christian answers, and of course it gets a lot of things wrong (not just about Christianity or the Bible), and of course, being a product of 21st century secular society it prioritizes “equality, inclusiveness, and diversity” over the free exchange of ideas and appends politically correct disclaimers to any potentially (politically or ideologically) controversial answer (after all, it doesn’t want to be cancelled), but so does just about any tool or platform which today’s secular world offers, whether Google, Bing, Wikipedia, and even Facebook where this brother posted his comment.
However, even if those assertions about ChatGPT were true, this comment seems to reflect an expectation that the world should cease to be the world and become more like the Kingdom of God, or that the world, as well as it’s institutions, tools, and laws, should conform to Bible-based Christian or Judeo-Christian values.
While this has for a long time been the expectation of many Christians in the United States and among Christian communities elsewhere influenced by American missionaries, it is an expectation that is foreign to most Christians outside the “Christian West” and to many within it.
I know many American Christians believe that the “Founding Fathers” had exactly that expectation in mind, but whether this is true or not, given Jesus’ words in Mt. 7:13+14, if you set up a society based on democracy (i.e. majority rule, with freedom of religion), the largely secular and non-Christian societies we have today in the US and in the West in general are exactly what we should expect: over time a majority of people choosing the wide gate, and building secular society in conformity with that path, regardless of the founders’ convictions or intentions.
This expectation and the belief in a “Christian society” which we have to somehow recover or restore leads to much frustration, with Christans spending much energy on turning society around through legislation, with all the attendant political belligerence and partisanship, instead of spending their energy on building a counter-cultural community that witnesses to Christ’s saving power, and which will have our unbelieving neighbors saying, “Look how they love one another! Can I be a part of that?” (Jn 13:34+35)
Mind you, I am not advocating that we withdraw from the world (á la the “Benedict Option”), or abdicate our responsibility as citizens of a democracy to speak truth to power and influence the world through the political process; but we do so primarily as individual citizens rather than as the church, and we follow the rules of the “game” and accept results which don’t go our way. Most of all we don’t pin our hope on our political efforts and get too emotionally invested in them for if we do, not only will we be disappointed but the world will perceive us as bellicose and belligerent political combatants rather than as loving witnesses to the Kindom of God.
This Kingdom of God will not be fully realized until Christ returns; and we cannot hasten its realization “by might and by power” (Zech. 4:6) or by electing the right politicians.__________
- or at least, as the Benedict Option is often construed and understood[↩]
- And we don’t argue for our positions primarily by pointing to the Bible but by arguments which appeal to those who don’t see the Bible as an authority[↩]
- for example, to eliminate discrimination against Christian positions, as if we could somehow work our way around Jesus’ assertion that “in the world you will have tribulation” Jn 16:33[↩]
- When we publicly rail against laws that contravene our values, in ways that paint our opponents as immoral wr are actually trying to “convict the world about sin, righteousness, and judgment” (Jn 16:8), and that is not our job but the Holy Spirit’s. He is much better at it than we can ever be.[↩]
- Psalm 146:3 says, “Put not your trust in princes (or presidents, or governors, or Supreme Court justices), in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation. When his breath departs (or he loses his re-election bid), he returns to the earth; on that very day his plans perish.” [↩]