Technologies of Glory

Brandon Bennett writes about those who relate human technological prowess to man becoming god.   He then makes an interesting application of Luther’s Theology of the Cross.

Read Brandon Bennett, Man’s Prosthetic God: Technologies of Glory and the Still-Present Need for Salvation | Mockingbird, which ends with this:

It would seem that though we might no longer need our ancient gods, we have simply transformed them into machinery for use in our daily lives. Whichever god that we have dreamt up has now been turned into a “prosthesis” to assist us further in our own story of glory, our race to the top.

But whatever gods (or technological gods!) humanity has constructed throughout the ages, they don’t exactly reflect the self-giving God of the Bible. The Triune God of the Bible, who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, is ineffable in his holiness and glory. He is past finding out on the part of humanity, for the only god humanity can find is the one he wishes to create. But the Triune God, we Christians confess, makes himself known to us. He reveals himself where none of us would ever look: the cross. As Luther wrote about the theology of the cross, “God can be found only in suffering and the cross.” Christianity then places God in his descent to humanity in which he comes to be crucified in the person of Jesus Christ.

Whatever hope our technological advances have afforded us, it seems that we’ve not quite made it. The ground we stand on is still pretty shaky. Freud even agrees: our god-like achievements haven’t freed us from our misery after all. We may think our gadgets are prosthetic gods, but in our flight to the top, we are hopelessly lost. For though we have injected ourselves with hopeful and endless possibilities, their dependence on us renders them impossible possibilities. “Voiceless” as we are, it is God who must utter the word of grace to us.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

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