I admit it, I am a slow adopter of technology. It is a genetic predisposition that has proven to have low heritability, as my daughter is pretty consistently on the front end of embracing new gadgets. And my son, while not nearly as aggressive as his sister, is nevertheless well ahead of me. Perhaps my son has inherited my frugality. Leigh prefers the term “cheap” when describing this trait in me.
All that said, I have to admit that my engagement with the products of the late Steve Jobs’ brainchild Apple, Inc. is limited to just an old, now antiquated iPod and an iPhone 4. The former has been rendered not useless, but certainly less-used by virtue of the latter, and now as of this week, the latter is on the road to obsolescence, thanks to the iPhone 4S and the inevitable iPhone 5.
Much has already been written, and I suspect that much more is yet to come about Steve Jobs. Probably safe to assume that many of those kindly expressions are being made using the very technology that bears his imprint. And it was from that same technology that many learned for the first time that he had died yesterday.
Much of what I have read has focused on the genius of Steve Jobs and the amazing innovations that can be traced back to his vision for technology and consumers. Few have focused on what really ought to concern people of faith, and people of the Christian faith in particular. Granted, the world has lost a unique genius and we are right to mourn the loss of Jobs’ life, and to some degree the absence of his creativity applied to future products. But my hope would be that we would grieve the probable loss of this man’s soul, more so than the loss of the gadgets that he might have been a part of delivering in the future.
It is entirely possible within the context of the mysteries of God, that God and God alone worked His sovereign, saving grace into the folds of Jobs’ life in the days, hours, or even moments before his death. I hope that is the case. But there was certainly nothing in the visible or audible content of Jobs’ life that would offer any particular confidence that he had earlier realized and embraced a saving faith as described in scripture. Instead, his apparent faith was much more in conformity with secularism. Some believe he may have been a Buddhist.
The irony is certainly not lost on me that while Jobs clearly recognized the inevitableness of death, even his own (as witnessed by his often cited commencement address at Stanford University a few years ago), he also must surely have been a part of the decision-making process that settled on the iconic Apple logo. That logo of an apple with a bite taken out of it is the very symbol of the introduction of sin and death into the world, as described in Genesis chapter 3.
My hope for Jobs is that in some supernatural, monergistic way, God revealed the rest of His story of redemption to Mr. Jobs, in at least the last few moments before he passed from this life, into the next.