Q: I'm kind of a technology geek, and when I walked through our local electronics store the other day, I suddenly realized that most of the products weren't even around 20 years ago. Do you think technology could be the key to solving the world's problems? — R.K.
A: We live in a remarkable age, and sometimes I'm staggered by all the advances that have been made just in my lifetime. I still remember my father's first radio — a crystal set that occasionally picked up stations (and lots of static) hundreds of miles away.
In some ways, we do live in a better world — and we should thank God for this, and for the abilities and opportunities He's given to those who've made it possible. How many readers of this column are alive today because of advances in medicine that weren't even dreamed of a century ago? What will another century bring?
But in other ways, we don't live in a better world. In fact, some of the human race's greatest scientific advances have also been used for great evil. Nuclear isotopes can be used to treat cancer — but also to make bombs. The Internet has led to a more efficient and prosperous world — but has also provided criminals and pornographers with new channels for destroying lives. The Bible warns of a time when "evil men and imposters will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived" (2 Timothy 3:13). Are we living in that day?
Our greatest need is not new technology, but a new heart — and that can only come as we turn to God and submit our lives to Jesus Christ. Have you committed your life to Him? The Bible's promise is still true: "If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation" (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Q: My friend says she's spiritual but not religious. What do you suppose she means? She turned me down when I asked her to go to church with me, and said she didn't believe in organized religion. — Mrs. N.C.
A: Why don't you ask your friend someday what she means by her statement — not to criticize or judge her, but simply because you'd like to know what she believes? It might even open up an opportunity for you to share your own faith in Christ with her.
I suspect she's already given you some clues about what she means by this expression (which, incidentally, has become common today). For one thing, she's told you she isn't interested in "organized religion," by which she probably means any church or organized gathering. In other words, her "spirituality" is strictly a private matter (although she may enjoy being with others who share her views). I suspect she also sees "spirituality" as a feeling — a feeling of being united with what she believes is a higher spiritual power.
The problem, however, is that sin is what separates us from God — and her view of "spirituality" leaves no room for sin or forgiveness. This is why we need Christ, for He came to make our forgiveness possible through His death on the cross. The Bible says, "There is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus" (1 Timothy 2:5).
Pray for your friend, and ask God to help you be a witness to her of Christ's love and peace — both by your words and your life. In reality, she is searching for God — and God's promise is true: "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart" (Jeremiah 29:13).
(Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: http://www.billygraham.org.)