In September of 1986 a friend sent a most amazing note my way. I had sent an earlier note expressing my being stumped as to how to approach the work of the church while sitting in on one hostile/frustrating meeting after another. Fear was holding us back....and I was a part of it....and I wasn't sure what/if to do.
My friend.....hang tough!
Legalism and pharisaism are hoodlums on the loose in our Lord's Body, the Church. They have always killed and destroyed, assaulted and raped, clawed and crushed, bruised and battered the spiritual lives of others. Our Savior reserved His severest words for those whose hypocrisy and squint-eyed judgmental attitude bullied others into submission.
Stand fast. Stand against. Stand alone, if necessary. But stand in the Ephesians 6 "full armor of God" with that effective "shield of fatih" that extinguishes all the adversary's flaming missiles. All.....including legalism and pharisaism.
I respect you for your discernment. I affirm your courage to face wrong head-on. Don't even flinch, Terry. God honors those rare spokesmen who trust Him in the hard places. You're one of 'em, my friend.
Praying for you....honestly,
Charles R. Swindoll
Just ten days ago I received a similar S.O.S. from one of our most brilliant ministers pleading for prayer over him as he felt he was dying in his work. I thought of Swindoll's note and pass it along to those of you who really needed to read this letter today. God has a way of providing that just right message...even from a twenty year old letter!