A VIRTUAL RELIGION
I think one of the more exciting innovations in our current day is the technology
known as virtual reality. Virtual reality makes it possible for you to feel as if you were
actually there in a circumstance or situation.
I heard about a company that is just beginning which will be called Virtual
Jerusalem. I’m told it will be a computer technology and it will be possible for you, on
your computer, to virtually go to Jerusalem. It will take you down the streets and the
lanes of the old city of Jerusalem. It will take you to many of the biblically significant
places in the Holy Land and it will give you the atmosphere of the city of Jerusalem and
its environs as if you were actually there. Virtual reality. They can put you in an airplane
cockpit now. They can simulate the flight of an F16 or an F18. You get all of the
sensations, all of the feelings, all of the emotions as if you were actually flying a jet
airplane. It’s not real, but you feel like it is real. It’s not actual, it’s virtual.
But it seems like it’s the real thing.
The more I think about virtual reality, the more I come to believe that there are
multitudes of people in America who have what I would call virtual religion. It seems to
be the real thing. They think it’s the real thing. Sometimes they feel like it is the real
thing, but it is virtual; it is not actual.
James talks about this subject of religion and he uses religion in a wider sense.
There is a sense in which Christianity is not a religion. Christianity in its more precise
meaning is not a religion because religion is man’s attempt to make his way to God.
Christianity is God’s attempt to reach man. Someone said there are many religions in the
world, there’s only one Gospel. So, not in that sense are we talking about religion nor
does James talk about it, but he is talking about religion in a wider sense.
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