What do these 5 films have in common & what difference does it make to you?
First off, of course, they’re all science fiction.
Secondly, they all involve robots, except the first one, The Island.
So it’s not robots that’s precisely the common topic. What all five do have in common is a deep philosophical, moral, and theological problem.
In the case of The Island, for instance, the corporation producing cloned human beings to be used for saleable body parts, call their embryonic agnates product. People have become products to be bought and sold, and terminated at will.
In Artificial Intelligence, the corporation produces mechanical children capable of self-awareness, human emotions, and genuine love.
In I Robot, the corporation turns out millions of servant robots who can be replaced and deactivated at will.
In Ex Machina, the inventor of fully-functioning female androids exploits them as sex-slaves.
And in Blade Runner, the whole premise of the film hinges on the fact that in the year 2019 sophisticated androids (and remember that’s what the word android means— a robot with a human appearance) are violently terminated by a hired assassin (a “blade runner”) when their usefulness is over.
What makes this film so shocking is that the androids begin to gather into groups for protection, and the principle android character (Roy Batty) plots to assassinate his own creator― the inventor and manufacturer of these humanoid machines. (In essence, this renegade android plots to kill the “god” who created him.)
In all these films the same issue is raised. How can the creator of sentient, self aware artificial humanoids (either grown in a vat as clones, or assembled as machines on an assembly line, who are alive in every sense of the word—they are able to think, feel, hope, and even fear death) justifiably terminate them when they’re no longer needed?
Why is this such a significant philosophical, moral, and theological problem? Because it strikes at the very root of existence. Why do we exist? Why are we so amazingly (and often painfully) aware of our own existence? And worse, why are we constantly made aware of our own mortality? Why are we “hunted down” by pain, and disease, and the spectre of inevitable death? What kind of Creator would design us and make us sentient, vulnerable, finite and worst of all, able to contemplate the joy of life and the trauma of death?
The atheists and secular humanists (see The Logan’s Run Analogies) would have us to believe that there is no Creator. Evolution― that mindless, soul-less “force” that supposedly has mutated intelligent, vibrant, self-manufacturing life-forms from pond scum (see Crime of the Century)— supposedly is the answer to all our questions. But Evolution raises questions it can’t answer: What is the purpose of existence? the Universe? Life?
Evolutionists tell us the purpose is survival. That’s a pretty pitiful excuse for living― especially living under the constant shadow of eventual death.
So it takes the likes of these films in general— and Blade Runner in particular— to shake us out of our complacency, to get us to ask ultimate questions which are usually addressed only in philosophy classes.
If you’ve never even considered these issues, how do you expect to escape the inevitable fate that awaits you? After all, you’ve heard the old saying, “there’s nothing more certain than death and taxes!” Well; are you ready to accept the idea that death is inevitable? Are you going to believe the evolutionist mantra that death is a part of life? And are you ready to give up without a fight? The Welsh poet Dylan Thomas warned us never to give up without a fight: “do not go gentle into that good night— rage, rage, against the dying of the light!”
What makes all these movies similar is that in every case the inventor (“creator”) of the clones/androids turns out in the end to think he can act like God, terminating life at will. In almost every case, there is a scene in each of these films where the “creator” is accused of being a monster.
In every case, these movies raise the issue that a Creator who reserves to himself the right to choose who will live and who will die is a monster.
So is the real Creator a monster, like Blade Runner suggests?
Unlike the atheists who say there is no creator, as a Christian I believe the Creator is a person, and I can know him personally. I’m not like the clones in The Island, and the cyborgs in all those robot movies, who are not aware that they were manufactured— until it’s too late. As a Christian I cannot deny that I was made. Yes, I was designed and assembled somewhere, by somebody. But now that I know who that person is, and that he made me for a reason— and that he cares about me and will never “terminate” me when he no longer needs me— gone is the idea that he is a “monster”.
As a Christian I have a solid answer to the question of who made me. “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: and he is before all things, and by him all things consist.” (Colossians 1:16,17)
So who is “him”? More detail is found in John 1:1-3: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.”
Who is this “Word”? It tells us 10 verses later: “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14) When did the Creator become a man and “walk amongst us?” The only person who fits the description is Jesus Christ. He is the answer to the question, “who is our manufacturer?”― and also the question “Why did he make us?”
In Revelation 4:11 we are told WHY Jesus made us. “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.”
This means that the Creator, Jesus Christ, made the universe and all life for his pleasure.
But even here, despite what is intended as a simple straight-forward explanation, men have corrupted this idea, and perhaps for this reason most of the people in this society have never taken the Christian message seriously. Like the robots in Blade Runner, I Robot, Ex Machina and Artificial Intelligence— and the clones in The Island, these “manufactured humans” were made for the pleasure of their masters…and when the masters no longer had any use for them, or they no longer got any pleasure out of them, they were discarded, terminated, replaced, dismantled, scrapped― or “sent to the chop-shop”. (see Robots, an animated film for children with the same theme).
The problem is that the Christian God did not make humans for his own pleasure in the same twisted sense as we see here in these films. This twisted theology lurks in the dogma of the “predestination religions”— where certain people are relegated for heaven and others for hell― such as the idea that some people have a preordained destiny, like in religions like Islam or the Calvinist sects of Christianity. The idea that God gets any pleasure whatsoever in death of any kind is absurd. He is a God of life, not of death. Read Ezekiel 33:11: “As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked” If God gets no pleasure in the death of the wicked, he certainly would get no pleasure in the death of the righteous!
So then why does he allow death?
He permits it now— so that it can be completely eliminated forever. (More about this in a minute.)
God uses a great negative to accomplish a greater positive.
Of course, there isn’t room here in this article to go into a lot of detail, but I can say assuredly that the details are available. The ANSWERS are there….what I’m looking for on this page is people asking the questions. (It’s sort of like any of these android creations in these films— they are completely unaware that they’re about to be dismantled or turned off or discarded until the Blade Runner shows up at their doorstep. When they become aware, it’s usually too late.)
The point I want to make before I close, is that the God of the Universe knows every person who has ever lived on this planet. There is not a person too small or too insignificant or too unimportant. And God cares about everybody ― he cares about you. He made you for a reason, and he designed you to live forever. He has no plans whatever to ever terminate you or have you terminated. There will never be a time when you will no longer be needed. You cannot be replaced. He wants you alive, not dead.
So why do people die? That’s a subject for another page. For now, let me assure you that the Blade Runner who as been sent out to terminate you was not sent by your Creator — he has been commissioned by the Adversary.
THE PURPOSE OF THIS ARTICLE
The whole purpose of Analogyman is to warn you and equip you to escape your personal Blade Runner. The Bible reveals your personal adversary in this somewhat complicated verse: (Hebrews 2:14) “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.” I can’t explain all this in one sentence, so this last quote will have to do for now: (1Co 15:25,26) “For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.”
Dear reader, the chances of you reading a Bible or going to church are small to nil, so I’ve placed this material within your reach…which means I’ve had to send LIGHT into DARK PLACES….and you’re going to have to respond. Keep reading some of the other materials on this site…or if you want personal help understanding, contact me directly: firstname.lastname@example.org