What I don't like about computers is that they do what I say and not what I mean. Example: I mean to hit the "control" button but hit the "CAPS LOCK" BUTTON AND ALL OF A SUDDEN GIANT LETTERS DOMINATE THE SCREEN. i LOOK AT THE SCREEN AND SAY, "tHAT'S NOT WHAT i MEANT!" AND i correct my mistake.

Now I know I shouldn't be so hard on the mACHINE (OOPS, DID IT AGAIN). After all, it's just a tool. It can't read my mind (though considering what it cost, it should at least keep me from making the same mistake over and over). A computer computes. It doesn't think. It doesn't question. It doesn't smile, shake its monitor, and say, "Max, Max, I know what you are trying to do. You don't intend to be hitting the delete button, removing the very letters you want to keep. If you'd look at your screen you would see that. But since you won't and since you and I are good friends and you leave me plugged in, I'm going to give you what you need and not what you request."

Computers don't do that. Computers are legalists, impersonal pragmatists. Push a button and get a response. Learn the system and get the printout. Blow the system and get ready for a long night.

Computers are heartless creatures. Don't expect any compassion from your laptop. They don't call it a hard disk for nothing. (Even the shell is hard.)

Some folks have a computer theology when it comes to understanding God. God is the ultimate desktop. The Bible is the maintenance manual, the Holy Spirit is the floppy disk, and Jesus is the 1-800 service number.

Call it computerized Christianity. Push the right buttons, enter the right code, insert the correct data, and bingo, print out your own salvation.

It's professional religion. You do your part and the Divine Computer does his. No need to pray (after all, you control the keyboard). No emotional attachment necessary (who wants to hug circuits?). And worship? Well, worship is a lab exercise-insert the rituals and see the results.

Computerized religion. No kneeling. No weeping. No gratitude. No emotion. It's great-unless you make a mistake. Unless you err. Unless you enter the wrong data or forget to save the manuscript. Unless youre caught on the wrong side of a power surge. And then... tough luck, buddy, you're on your own.

Religion by computer. That's what happens when...
you replace the living God with a cold system;
you replace the ultimate sacrifice of Christ with the puny achievements of man.

When you view God as a computer and the Christian as a number-crunching, cursor-commanding, button-pusher... that is religion by the computer.

God hates it. It crushes his people. It contaminates his leaders. It corrupts his children.

From And the Angels were Silent
Copyright 1992 Max Lucado

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