Did Bill Gates, American businessman and principal founder of Microsoft, realize the Biblical significance of a comment he made last month about Artificial Intelligence (AI)?
AI, sometimes called machine intelligence, refers to the ability computers have to learn and solve problems in ways that mimic the functioning of the human brain.
In an interview last month, Bill Gates said, “AI may eventually force us to redefine work itself and the role it plays in human life. We may evolve toward higher pursuits. A day will come when we won’t be so focused on just working and avoiding disease, we’ll need some new spiritual cause that binds us, other than just the basics.”
The AI Meme
The people behind the Orthodox Jewish Sparks of Chassidic Wisdom Instagram account noticed the similarity between what Gates said and what the prophet Isaiah wrote about the End of Days.
In all of My sacred mount Nothing evil or vile shall be done; For the land shall be filled with devotion to Hashem As water covers the sea. Isaiah 11:9
They created a meme comparing Gates’ recent comment with a quote from Maimonidies, a major Torah scholar who lived in the 12th century. Basing himself of the prophecy of Isaiah, Maimonides taught, “In the Messianice Era the occupation of the entire world will be solely to know God, attaining an understanding of their Creator to the full extent of human potential , as it is written [Isaiah 11:9], “For the world will be filled with the knowledge of God as the waters cover the ocean bed.”
Did Isaiah Predict Computers?
Rabbi Levi Potash is an Orthodox rabbi based in Silicon Valley. He makes it a priority to stay updated on the world of technology. In an article published in the Jewish Press earlier this year, Potash asked, “Did Yeshayahu (Isaiah) Predict Computers?”
He described the four levels of existence, the lowest being inanimate objects. Potash further connected computers to Isaiah’s prophecy when he wrote, “Now, finally, Torah has come to the world of inanimate objects – i.e., computers, which are made up of metal and plastic. And so the land – physical inanimate objects – is actually being filled with the knowledge of Hashem like the water covers the sea bed.”
The Hidden Connection Between Technology and Redemption
End Times expert and prolific author Rabbi Pinchas Winston told Breaking Israel News, “Kabbalah teaches that eventually the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil will merge with the Tree of Life, as it was supposed to do back in Adam’s time, and would have had he not sinned.”
According to Winston, Adam’s sin, “pushed the unification of both trees off until the end of history.” He further explained that “which we are witnessing now as the sciences (which parallels the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil) unwittingly come closer to the Torah’s (which parallels the Tree of Life) view of reality.”
In a previous article published by Breaking Israel News, Rabbi Alon Anava elaborated on the connection between advancing technology and redemption.
“I see how Hashem is throwing us hints, constantly, through technology, and through anything, that the geula (redemption) is coming. The signs of the geula [are] being manifested into the world in the language of technology.”
Anava compared GPS technology, which uses “satellites in space that track us and see where we’re going and guide us” to “the concept of having Hashem above us, guiding us and watching us and overseeing us.
“So we see that constantly, in the last 20 years, the knowledge of Hashem and the signs of Moshiach are manifesting in technology, so we can start relating to what’s going to happen when Moshiach comes. Every couple of months, a new invention comes to show us that the geula is coming.
“What we need to learn from that is that we really have to get with the program and understand that with every day that passes, we’re getting one day closer to the geula. Hashem is basically preparing the ground so we can relate with Godly concepts, and so that we can see with our own eyes. The world is even evolving to a different dimension.”
Is AI Coming From The Dark Side?
Advances in high-tech, including AI, raise many theological issues. Breaking Israel News reporter Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz wrote about genetic engineering and its connection to the sin of Noah’s generation. He cautioned that there are some things that technology can do that ought not be done. “Mixing of species is an improper manifestation of procreation that led to the destruction of the generation of Noah,” he wrote.
In 2017, Anthony Levandowski, a high-tech millionaire, established Way of the Future Church to help prepare humanity for a time when “machines” will control the world. One of its premises is that, “There is no such thing as ‘supernatural’ powers.”
Similarly, Pastor Mark Biltz of ElShaddai Ministries sees a dark power in AI which he characterizes as a tool for deception that could be manipulated in the hands of forces working against redemption.
God Is The Ultimate Source of Intelligence
Unlike those who worry that AI is a menace that will take over, Winston commented that intelligence comes from God alone. “If anything, AI shows that ‘intelligence’ doesn’t come from thin air. It can evolve, but only after some initial programming from a higher source of knowledge. In the case of man, that was God,” he affirmed.