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Iconic author, speaker and prophet Tim LaHaye died Monday at age 90, igniting mourning through the evangelical community and beyond.
National Hispanic Christian Leadership Council President Samuel Rodriguez said of LaHaye:
One has to search far and wide to find an area of the Christian life that Dr. Tim LaHaye didn't influence. Dr. LaHaye has blessed the church in America with a legacy that will far outlast his time on this earth. The principled stand he took on countless issues has impacted the social, cultural, and political landscape for generations. He was a once-in-a-millennium type of leader who paved the way for future generations, and today we celebrate his life and his legacy. Today, we pray for his family.
LaHaye is survived by his wife Beverly, who founded and is now Chariman of Concerned Women for America.
CWA current CEO Penny Nance released this statement:
My heart is heavy today with the news that Dr. Tim LaHaye has passed from here into his eternal home in Heaven. I have so many fond memories of him, including going running together in California and China when we were both younger. He cared about everyone, whether a prisoner or a billionaire, the same. He was a true Biblical scholar with a fascinating intellect and a deep love for his wife and children.
"He was always so kind and encouraging to me. Before I submitted the final draft of my book, Feisty and Feminine: A Rallying Cry for Conservative Women, he generously agreed to review the chapter on why Christians must support Israel and give me thoughts and feedback. It was a privilege to receive advice from one the all-time best-selling Christian writers. In the last couple of years, I would call to talk to my boss, Mrs. LaHaye, and end up having lovely conversations with Dr. LaHaye, which he would always end them with a word of encouragement. He would say, 'Penny we love you, and we are proud of you, and we pray every day for you.' I join his family and people around the nation in mourning our loss, but I know he is in heaven enjoying worshipping at Jesus' feet and refining his knowledge and views on eschatology."
Prominent evangelist Franklin Graham tweeted: "My deepest sympathy & prayers for the family of a wonderful man, @Dr_Tim_Lahaye, who passed away this morning."
LaHaye authored scores of books, including prophetic tomes, Bible studies and his exceedingly popular Left Behind series with co-author Jerry B. Jenkins.
Fellow end times writer Joel C. Rosenberg also posted his remarks in a series of tweets:
I will miss my dear friend, @Dr_Tim_LaHaye -- a brilliant Bible prophecy scholar and a kind & thoughtful mentor.
I first met @Dr_Tim_LaHaye in 1992, I think, when my wife, Lynn, was working for his wife, Beverly, at Concerned Women For America. @CWforA
Lynn ran the @CWforA conferences & we would live in the hotels for many days. @Dr_Tim_LaHaye & I would chat for hours about Bible prophecy.
I loved getting to know @Dr_Tim_LaHaye in the years before he & Jerry Jenkins wrote LEFT BEHIND & sold 65 million+ copies.
Success never diverted or dampened @Dr_Tim_LaHaye 's passion for the Scriptures, prophecy, the Lord's return & preaching the Gospel.
Another thing I loved about @Dr_Tim_LaHaye was his deep, deep for #Israel & the Jewish people.
Last time I saw @Dr_Tim_LaHaye was in December in Dallas. I spoke at a Bible prophecy conference he hosted. Can't wait to see him in heaven.
I'm thrilled for my friend @Dr_Tim_LaHaye as he spends his first day in heaven, but saddened that he didn't get to be raptured!
Tyndale House Publishers CEO Mark Taylor praised LaHaye as a "wonderful Bible teacher and pastor and an inspiration for our entire industry. We will miss him."
LaHaye himself was fascinated by the end times mysteries. He penned articles for Charisma News, including 7 Reasons Why Some Pastors Don't Preach on End-Times Prophecies.
Left Behind co-author Jenkins wrote this about his "model, mentor, father figure and friend":
Tim proved to be a great cheerleader besides being the Bible prophecy expert. I would send him blocks of copy, and he would send back his notes to keep me on track theologically, always adding, "Send more! I want to know what happens next!"
What strikes me as I mourn his passing today is that I was always surprised when we reconnected in person, or when I looked at a picture of us together. In my mind, he was a giant who towered over me. Physically, the opposite was true.
Writing the novel series for him, and traveling with him all over the country to promote it, I saw the softer side of a man famous for successful pastorates, the founding of Christian schools and a college, best-selling nonfiction books, and strong opinions. ...
I considered him a model, a mentor, a father figure, and a friend. Thrilled as I am that he is where he has always wanted to be, his departure leaves a void in my soul that I don't expect to be filled until I see him again.
Jessilyn Justice is the director of online news for Charisma. Born and raised in a pastor's family in Alabama, she attended Lee University and the Washington Journalism Center. She's passionate about sharing God's goodness through storytelling. Tell her what you think of this story on Twitter @jessilynjustice.
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