March22 , 2023

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    A recent survey showed that more than half of Americans view churches more positively than technology.

    According to Pew Research Center, 52% of American adults believe that churches and religious organizations have a positive impact in the country. This is the first time in years that the public favored churches more than technology companies.

    Tools like technology are able to aid us in this pursuit. We know they can also be designed and used in ways that dishonor God and devalue our fellow image-bearers. —Artificial Intelligence: An Evangelical Statement of Principles

    For at least a decade, big tech companies have been enjoying a high trust rating from Americans. People have been using the services and innovation these companies provide for business, leisure and ordinary daily tasks. But, the Pew survey revealed that from 71%, only 50% of Americans now see technology as a positive force in the country.

    The research organization explained that the 21 percentage point drop in ratings could be attributed to the series of criticisms tech firms faced recently. From issues on privacy to the objectionable censorship bordering on discrimination on social media platforms, public confidence on these companies sharply declined.

    As the public shifted its perception on tech giants, Christians hoped that this is the perfect time to focus on the ethical concerns posed by technology.

    Numerous evangelical leaders endorsed a statement of principles in April which aimed to help churches use technology, specifically artificial intelligence (AI), to promote Christian doctrines.

    According to the statement titled Artificial Intelligence: An Evangelical Statement of Principles, “Tools like technology are able to aid us in this pursuit. We know they can also be designed and used in ways that dishonor God and devalue our fellow image-bearers.”

    Russell Moore, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, said new technology could help develop programs for Bible translation so Christians from far-flung areas could have the Bible in their native tongue. He added that technology is a great advancement, but Christians should be critical on how it is used, reports Religion News Service.

    Meantime, Jason Thacker, ERLC’s creative director, said, “I believe that AI presents one of the greatest opportunities for human flourishing in our lifetime, but it also presents one of the greatest threats to human dignity that we’ll ever face.”

    Thacker pointed out, “If we don’t think about what we’re creating with artificial intelligence, we’re going to fall prey to the same temptation to worship the creation rather than the creator.”