John McAfee

I hope your computer has some type of virus protection. Most computers do. We can thank John McAfee for that. McAfee was a computer programmer for places like NASA and Lockheed, and he was a whiz at it. In the mid-80s, he realized the great harm someone could do to computers if they installed a virus. He raised a cry about potential security threats and what a virus could do to businesses and national security.

But John McAfee did more than raise the alarm about computer security; he did something about it. In 1987, he created the first antivirus program. Initially, he just gave it away, but he realized money could be made, so he released the McAfee Antivirus software. About seven years later, he sold all his shares in McAfee Associates for a tidy $100 million. (John McFee would later be vocal about his dislike of the program he helped create, calling it the worst software on the planet.)

John McAfee was an interesting and quirky character. We can thank him for his concern and drive for computer security, but what drove him was his own insecurity. He spent the latter part of his life looking over his shoulder. He was convinced others, including government officials, were constantly spying on him. He claimed a drug cartel was after him. He lived in Belize for a while but fled when he thought the Belizean government was after him. The country’s prime minister, Dean Barrow, had a singular response to this claim: “Jon McAfee is extremely paranoid, even bonkers.”

Stories abound about his quirkiness and his claims. For example, he claimed that, when he put his vehicle in the shop, someone broke into the shop and installed a control board to the grille. Why? “They could make us wreck.” [Source] He was highly insecure, convinced others meant him harm.

It is hard to know which claims McAfee made were true and which were just outlandish stories. One thing is known for sure. John McAfee never gained any personal security or sense of well-being. He took his own life in 2021.

Here was a man who gave computer security to millions of people, but he never gained any personal peace or security. Sadly, there are countless others just like McAfee. They don’t share his programming genius or paranoia, but they share his total lack of security.

Unlike McAfee’s paranoia that others were after him to do harm, God is after you for your great good. He is for you! He desires to bring you to Himself, safe and secure for eternity. And that is all possible because of Jesus Christ. When you embrace the truth that Jesus is God come to earth—God in flesh—who came to remove your sin and give you life, you gain a peace that no computer program can provide.

What, then, are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 3He did not even spare his own Son but gave him up for us all. How will he not also with him grant us everything? 3Who can bring an accusation against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies. Who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is the one who died, but even more, has been raised; he also is at the right hand of God and intercedes for us. Who can separate us from the love of Christ? Can affliction or distress or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?… No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:31-35,37-39).

There is no greater victory—and no greater security.

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This post supports the study “Security in Place of Fear” in Bible Studies for Life and YOU.


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