News  |    |  February 25, 2020

Faith leaders explore ethics, morality of growing artificial intelligence usage in U.S.

News article by Martha Simmons. Published in The Alabama Baptist.


Some 70 years ago, the question that kept computer pioneer Alan Turing up at night was, “Can machines think?” Today, we still don’t know the answer to that question, though most of us are surrounded by devices that understand instructions, process commands and even anticipate our next need.

Christian ethicists wonder about the ethical implications of such technology. “No issues keep me awake at night like those surrounding technology and artificial intelligence,” said Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC).

Artificial intelligence — or AI for short — has vast implications for humankind’s future, Moore believes. “It is critical that the church be proactive in understanding AI,” Moore said. “It’s also critical that the church insist AI be used in ways consistent with the truth that all people possess dignity and worth, created as they are in the image of God.”

To that end, the ERLC last year released a statement signed by more than 30 leaders and experts across the fields of economics, public policy, business, technology, ethics, biblical theology and medicine. The statement (published in full at lays out the ethical issues surrounding AI in an effort to prompt evangelical Christians to action. [ . . . ]