The day had finally arrived. The day I had been looking forward to. I had bought a new house, and it was time to move in. I was excited, and as I drew up outside the house, I was still working out where to put all my furniture.
Of course, I was expecting the house to be empty. So imagine my surprise, as I walked up to the front door, to find the door being opened, and a man standing in the doorway.
‘Good morning, sir. Welcome to your new home.’
I said, ‘I don’t want to be rude. But who are you, and why are you here?’
‘I’m 1 of 1,’ he said. The previous owner didn’t want to take me with him. So, he left me here for you instead. I am your servant.’
‘What do you mean previous owner?’ I asked.
‘I am an android, sir.’
‘But you look, just like a man.’
‘Yes, sir. That’s the way I was made.’ He then took the bag I was holding, and let me in.
Now to say that I was surprised is a bit of an understatement. Surprised, I was flabbergasted. This was not what I was expecting at all. Nevertheless, at that moment the removal van arrived, and it was time to move the furniture in. This was not a time to argue whether I wanted a servant or not, let alone a life-like android. It was time to arrange my furniture.
However, if you were to tell me that my move would go so smoothly, I would not have believed you. Indeed, it seemed like there lots of 1 of 1’s. Indeed, at least one in every room. And that day, not only was all the furniture put in the right place, but all my personal belongings were unpacked, and all the boxes were taken away. Indeed, 1 of 1 even provided me with lunch and tea.
Even so, by the end of the day I was worn out. The problem of 1 of 1 could wait. And I decided that I could deal with the problem in the morning.
The next morning, when I got out of the shower, I found that 1 of 1 had got my clothes out for me. And when I went into the kitchen there was 1 of 1 preparing my breakfast for me.
I said, ‘You’ve been busy this morning, 1 of 1.’
‘Not really sir. You see I’m 4 of 1.’
‘I’m 4 of 1, sir.’
‘1 of 1 opened the front door for you yesterday. 2 of 1 got out your clothes. And I’m getting you breakfast. It’s really no trouble, sir.’
At that, my head began to spin. Were there really three androids? And three who all looked and acted the same? No wonder there seemed to be one in every room yesterday.
‘Would you like the Bible to read, sir.’
‘Yes sir. God’s word.’
‘But I don’t read the Bible, 4 of 1.’
‘But you should sir. And it’s very good way to start the day.’
‘Alright, just this once. But where should I start?
‘At the beginning, sir. I’ve always found it useful to be reminded who created us.’
Now even to me the conversation was getting a bit odd. After all, what would an android know about the Bible? And what would an android know about the creator? But I put that aside for the moment, and I began to read from the Bible.
However, later, when 4 of 1 came back, I said to him, ‘I’ve read the first couple of chapters. But I don’t know why the Bible has such meaning for you. And you weren’t created by God, were you?’
‘So, what it is?’
‘Well, sir, they are a reminder that I was created in someone’s image. You were made in the image of your maker, and we were made in the image of our creator. Our creator’s may be different, but we were both created nonetheless.’ And I could see his point. Indeed, for an android he seemed to be well-informed on the subject.
Which is why, over the next few days, I did not object to him giving me a Bible to read, or even receiving his advice on what I should read next. Because, I knew that if I did that, I would learn more and more about him, and about 1 of 1, and 1 of 2.
Now at what stage I decided to keep my android servants, I don’t know. But they weren’t doing any harm, and they were very useful around the house. Indeed, they did a lot of jobs that I really didn’t like doing at all. It was like one day, as I looked back, I realised I had just accepted them into my life.
In the meantime, I had also discovered that there was more than three of them. Indeed, I had also come across 5 of 1, 7 of 1, and 9 of 1.
So, one day when 4 of 1 came for the daily Bible reading I asked him, ‘How many of you are there, 4 of 1?’
‘There are eleven of us, sir,’ he replied.
‘Have there always been eleven?’ I asked.
‘No, sir. We were twelve. But one of us went wrong and had to deactivate himself. So now there are eleven. But we are expecting a replacement for him any time soon.’
‘So, what does the 1 mean? After all you’re 4 of 1, and I’ve met 2 of 1, 3 of 1, 5 of 1, 7 of 1, and 9 of 1. So what does the 1 stand for?’
‘Jesus, sir. That’s whose image we were made in. We are all made to look and behave like Jesus.’
At that moment, all of a sudden, everything began to make sense. I may not have been a believer. Indeed, reading the Bible had been totally foreign to me. And yet, androids or not, here I was surrounded by ‘people’ who loved me and cared, and wanted me to be part of God’s kingdom.
Of course, I wasn’t there yet, but it did spur me on to look deeper into the mysteries of the Christian faith, to see whether my creator, would also be my sustainer and redeemer.
Posted: 14th April 2018
© 2018, Brian A Curtis