He Made a Robot, and Then He Married Her (It?)

Zheng Jiajia is an artificial intelligence expert from Japan. He was evidently unable to find a suitable mate (or could not find love) so he built a humanoid robot. And then married her, or it. Or whatever. His family even attended the ceremony. He programmed his robot to speak some rudimentary sentences and has plans to upgrade her eventually so she can walk and do basic household chores. And the robot has a name: Yingying. Or would that by Yingying Jiajia?

So what is the Christian response to this? Well … nothing I guess. I mean, I do not know Jiajia so I am not really sure what I could say to him. But it does raise some interesting points for Christian leaders to process. What do we say to our people in the face of this?

I think we speak about human’s desire to create. Address the idea that, if life is not turning out how I want, then I need to do whatever it takes to create one that does. If you cannot find a suitable mate, just create one.

What about free will and love? Do they matter? Can you have a relationship in which one party has no will? What happens if he grows tired of Yingying? Do they seek counseling? Divorce?

What makes a marriage? Is it whatever we say it is? Can society – or an individual – create his own set of definitions for marriage?

What does this say about gender? Is a robot female? Did she choose to be female? Did her creator make her female? Can a robot even have gender?

Of course, I think this kind of thing happens way more than we think. People choose to create their own reality. If life does not suit you, create the one you want. And of course others are expected to endorse and support that decision.

But we already have a Creator. He designed a life for us that will work. A Creator that demonstrates his love for us. One who wants us to live in relationship with him forever.

And one who then leaves the decision to us. Free will. And maybe that is the crux of the matter.

Who do we really want to be in charge of our life?

I choose God … and I want others to choose him, too.

Steve loves to tell the story of Jesus. He is the Director of Ministry for Hope for Life, a Herald of Truth Ministry, and serves as an elder at the Southern Hills church of Christ in Abilene, TX. He is a popular speaker for Lectureships, seminars, and retreats, and his latest book is “Can I Tell You a Story?” He and his wife Marsha have two children and five grandchildren.

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Author:  Publish Date: March 6, 2018

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The CHARIS website hosts conversations of and about Churches of Christ. In partnership with the ACU Library and the Siburt Institute for Church Ministry at Abilene Christian University (Abilene, TX), the website is supported and led by the Center for Heritage and Renewal in Spirituality (CHARIS) at ACU. The Center’s mission is to renew Christian spirituality through engagement of Christian heritage, at Abilene Christian University and beyond. The views expressed on the CHARIS website are those of the various authors, and do not necessarily represent the views of Abilene Christian University or CHARIS at ACU. Questions or comments about the CHARIS website can be directed to charis @ acu.edu.

2017-18 CHARIS Editorial Board:
Dr. Carisse Berryhill
Dr. Jason Fikes
Karissa Herchenroeder
Mac Ice
Chai Green
Tammy Marcelain
Molly Scherer
Dr. John Weaver

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