The Playstation Prophecies
We humans are pretty woefully bad at predicting the future. After all, if the future of my youth had come about, we would be zipping about on jet packs, vacationing on the moon etc. And more to the point, no one predicted the ubiquity of home computers or the creation of the Internet, much less its influence. The latest technology news to cross my screen is that IBM is harnessing the power of 16,000 Playstations to create the world's fastest supercomputer. You can read more in the BBC News article Fastest supercomputer to be built which tells of an IBM project to build Roadrunner—four times faster than the current world's fastest. And another article on how the Playstation3 itself is plagued with problems (even as the chips prove ideal for supercomputing).
There is something ineffably right about this. Making toys has become a multi-billion dollar a year business. With so much creativity and techonological savvy going in to their creation, perhaps it should have been predictable that toys could be used to create an alternative to underground nuclear testing (I am not making this up). Perhaps, but I never saw it coming. I'm guessing that you didn't either (nor did Asimov or other science fiction greats).
This is a church's blog and here comes the ecclesiastical punch line: Why do Christians waste even the least little time and mental energy on attempting to figure out how current world events can or do relate to Biblical prophecies? Given the nature of prophecy and our laughably poor prognosticating performance, why bother?
Someone will no doubt claim that the non-Biblical Nostrodamus predicted a computer built of Playstations, if they don't credit the prophecy to Ezekiel or Revelation. Even Jesus said that not even he knew the hour or the day of his return, but could only look to the signs to see the seasons.
How much better to put our time and energy in to those things Jesus did ask us to do: Loving God and loving our neighbor as ourselves. Once all widows, orphans and others in need have been provided for, we can perhaps then turn our attention to prophecy. In the meantime, we have enough to worry about. Unless you want to join the Kenyan cult that moved into bunkers this week.
In the archives is the sermon The Problem with the Rapture. Today's religion column for the Tribune & Georgian, From Anxiety to Abundance is also online.
The Rev. Frank Logue, Pastor + King of Peace Episcopal Church