It’s not only Silicon Valley and other tech giants like Microsoft and Google who have scrambled, over the last ten months or so, to integrate Large Language Models (LLMs) into their respective spheres. Churches are apparently getting in on the ground floor, too. A new software called “Bible GPT,” a clear riff off of “ChatGPT,” has officially been released into the world.
According to the website, Bible GPT is
an AI enabled religious software to write Christian texts, essays, or personalized poetry. It also answers bible related questions. Bible GPT is the biggest step in AI technology, taking the Christian world by storm. It offers insights into what many Christians wish to know and clarity by answering their religious questions. The best part about bible GPT is that it is theologically accurate.Bible GPT – Ask Anything From Our AI Bible GPT (biblegpts.com)
In exploring the site, aspects of Bible GPT do indeed look to be quite helpful. It can organize newsletters, draft church memos, and even outline sermons, if you’re a pastor who doesn’t have the time or temperament for structure. It is interesting, though, to note that part of Bible GPT’s mission statement is to provide Christians with clarity “by answering their religious questions.”
Here it seems like some specification in AI’s uses is warranted. Bible GPT, if it works well, does seem like it could serve as a helpful tool for certain tasks. But Bible GPT also purports to be a trustworthy, theologically accurate guide to religious questions. For big questions about God, meaning, and religion, though, AI might not be the best listener or pastor. In addition, who’s to say what’s theologically accurate? Is that a Catholic talking? Or a Southern Baptist? AI can’t possibly know which biblical interpretation is “accurate.” That takes thoughtful discussion among people of good faith who know the issues and complexities of the text at hand.
No, best to take your existential concerns to people who will listen to your doubts and questions with respect and develop a relationship with you along the way. AI will never be able to do that.