In this episode of The Concordia Publishing House Podcast, Trevor Sutton joins Elizabeth Pittman to discuss the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) and the implications it poses for Christians today. Trevor recently wrote about this topic in Christianity Today, and is the co-author of the 2021 book Redeeming Technology: A Christian Approach to Healthy Digital Habits.
Many of us may use AI without even knowing it. It’s been around longer than many of us realize.
Trevor dives into these topics regarding AI and the impact it can have on modern Christians in this episode of the podcast.
Trevor also goes into the merits, benefits, and positives for church workers to consider when thinking about using AI in practical ways. He warns of pitfalls that pastors should also be aware of and watch for when actively integrating AI into life at church. Listen to the full episode to hear Trevor and Elizabeth discuss the rise of AI, the ethics involved in using AI at church and school, and how AI impacts our Christian worldview.
· While it seems like AI has exploded onto the scene in the last 8-10 months, in reality it has been around and in use for much longer. What are some of the ways we’ve seen AI used?
· What are some of the potential benefits for church and school leaders when using AI? What kinds of AI do you see as effective for supporting ministries?
· Is there some merit to using AI as a research aid?
· What are the potential pitfalls of using AI for conducting Bible research?
· What is some ways AI could help a pastor or commissioned minister be more productive?
· What are some dangers or possibly unforeseen pitfalls to watch out for for pastors and commissioned ministers?
· What kinds of AI do you see as dangerous for our ministries?
· How can a church use AI - what areas specifically could AI improve? What kinds of AI do you see as effective for supporting ministries?
· In regard to language model AI, how do you recommend churches and school balance the potential efficiencies for both planning assistance and content creation?
· Recent innovations in artificial intelligence (AI) are raising new questions about how copyright law principles such as authorship, infringement, and fair use will apply to content created or used by AI.
· Can he speak to the ethics from a church perspective on using AI? I know a lot of artists and writers who have expressed concern about their work being stolen.
· How will AI impact ethics in student work? How will teachers be able to check against AI-generated content?
· What unique role does congregational life play in a society that's growing more and more digitized/pre-generated/artificial?
· How does AI impact our perceptions of humanity, identity, and creativity? And/or how does our Christian worldview help us speak to these concerns as AI topics continue to grow?
About the Guest
Rev. A. Trevor Sutton is senior pastor at St. Luke Lutheran Church in Haslett, Michigan. Sutton has a BA from Concordia University in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and an MDiv from Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri. He has published multiple sermons, Bible studies, and devotional books with various Christian publishers. He previously served as managing editor of Relief Journal: A Christian Literary Expression. He speaks at academic conferences, retreats, and congregations. Sutton lives in Lansing, Michigan, with his wife, Elizabeth, and daughter, Grace.