Steve Jobs has passed away. It's a sad day for millions. Steve Jobs' commencement address at Stanford in 2005 is the most quoted of his legacy, in all the epitaphs I've read. While Steve professed no Christian faith, he nonetheless stumbled upon foundational truths that allowed him to eventually find success both in business and personally … but not without many failures along the way.
In his [Steve Jobs] commencement address at Stanford University in 2005,
after he had just came back from cancer the first time, Jobs said:
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”
So many personal thoughts arise as I read these words. I can't say I always followed my heart and I can't say I didn't live by the expectations and opinions of others most of my life. But I can say that I am finally following my own path, the one in my heart of hearts: pursuing true Godly knowledge.
I Timothy 2:4 who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
I used to think I knew the truth, following the teachings of one great biblical teacher most of my life, but now I see that he, like so many others, attained to only part of the whole truth, a very important part but incomplete nonetheless. From my current position, this seems to be an honest and truthful observation: no one, no place, no institution and no organization, possesses the whole truth of the knowledge of Godliness. All have started ministries and organizations with only partial knowledge, inspired by ego and self interest looking for followers for themselves. In all this, professing humbleness before God … who couldn't care less about organizations and who stoutly condemned, by the apostle Paul, following men's ministries.
Worse, most supposed sources of spiritual knowledge are so steeped in metaphysics, philosophy, human logic or personal experience, that Godly truth is nearly non-existent. These same religious leaders, while professing Jesus, bow down to the theologies of ancient Roman Catholic bishops and crown princes of the Roman Empire when it too professed a Christian faith. But modern followers are convinced that they have truth because they are just like all other deluded and mis-lead Christians. Nothing could be more fraudulent and dishonest.
The most honest statement I know to find God's truth didn't come from my preferred sources but came from the wife of a German expert in foreign missions: "Go Naked Before The Lord." Leave behind all those garments of religion and religious organizations which are so captivating and serve as a crutch for the weak. Indeed, I have been such myself but now with eyes open, my former religious garments no longer fit.
The question is: Do I don new garments or Go Naked Before The Lord?
Even in my weakness, clothed with man's religious garments, I saw the power of God by my own hands. I have seen many miracles of healing by the laying on of hands upon the ill. I have taught believers how to do the same, learning to minister by holy spirit revelation via vision, and touch. I have delivered revelations that built up and delivered believers. I have gone head to head with demons, including spirits of murder and cast them away. Yet, I always hid under religious garments in my teacher's shadow. I continually ran to the gatherings of others clothed by the same tailor as myself. But I was not Naked Before The Lord.
"Naked Before The Lord" is not a place, a group or a ministry, it is an attitude. It does not preclude fellowshipping with unbelievers, believers or even with the deluded, mis-lead or the idolatrous who shout Jesus Jesus. Rather, it is a place in the mind to which you go for your own life with the Father. It supersedes all religious garments of men. There in the solitude of your mind, in your heart of hearts, your are nothing more than Naked Before The Lord.
All this comes to mind when I am confronted with a great man's talents and contributions to our society brought to an end by his early demise, a man much younger than myself. I then begin to think of my own mortality, something which is coming in a couple of decades for me. I pray that all the dots will connect by then and I can see clearly the Lord's guiding hand in my life as I continue upon this untrodden path as I endeavor to Go Naked Before The Lord.
What say ye all?
Bless — JB