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A metal techno-crucifix adorns the cover of Wired magazine's December issue. The cover copy proclaims: "Science Gets Religion."

Among articles on the power of prayer, the Pope's astrophysicist, and the convergence of faith and the lab, the issue includes "God is the Machine," a speculative essay connecting the idea of God with controversial theories about the universe as a giant computer. Wired's founding editor, Kevin Kelly, wonders whether God is "the Ultimate Software and Source Code," "the Ultimate Programmer," or "the off-universe platform where this universe is computed."

Now an editor at large for Wired, Kelley is the author of Out of Control, New Rules for the New Economy, and Asia Grace, a collection of photos from Asia in the 1970s.

In 1979, at the age of 27, Kelly traveled to Jerusalem, to photograph Easter ceremonies. Unexpectedly locked out of his hostel—and without money for another place to stay—he wandered Jerusalem's Old City and finally found the doors to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher open. Inside, he fell asleep on a stone slab.

The next morning he followed the crowds to the Garden Tomb, where he experienced a profound conviction that Jesus had indeed risen from the dead. Kelly returned to his hostel to rest, and there had a strong sense that he would die within six months—and that he should live accordingly.

Rather than seek adventure, Kelly returned to his parents' home to strengthen those bonds, gave anonymous gifts of money, and took a 5,000-mile bike trip to re-establish ties with relatives. Kelly first told this story in 1999 on public radio's This American Life (audio file).

Christianity Today assistant online editor Todd Hertz talked to Kelly about using the terms of science to talk about God, his ...

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November 2002

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