Last week, Apple began shipping the much hyped iPad, the sexy-looking, wafer-thin tabloid computer that Steve Jobs himself has called “the most important thing” he has ever done. While some detractors scoff that it’s nothing more than a larger version of the popular iPod Touch handheld device, the overwhelming sentiment of most people who have seen it is along the lines of “If I promise you my first born, will you let me leap to the front of the line?” Before the device was even on store shelves, Apple had already received a quarter million pre-orders. Some analysts forecast they could sell 5 million units in the first year, making it the most successful new product launch in history.
The evangelical fervor is bordering on hysteria. Some techno geeks who have never had a date in their lives are already calling it the greatest invention since Gutenberg printed the first Bible some 600 years ago. Others are simply calling it the Jesus Tablet, because of the almost mystic, spiritual aura surrounding this seeming “holy grail” of computer gadgetry. If that’s not enough of a Biblical connection, why is it that the Bible even has an entire book named after Apple’s founder, the Book of Jobs? At the risk of comparing apples to oracles, this leads me to ask the obvious theological-technological question: Which is better, Jesus or the new “Jesus Tablet”, the iPad?