A personal friend of conservative talk radio icon Rush Limbaugh said that the host had completely dedicated his life to Christ before he left this world earlier this month.
In the near two weeks since the death of Limbaugh, nothing has dulled the pain for those of us who listened to him regularly and loved him like family. Aside from being able to still hear his voice on the air through archives, the loss still stings.
Certainly knowing Limbaugh, who turned a young 70 just last month, is no longer fighting the pain for terminal lung cancer is a reprieve when not feeling selfish. But as humans, we’re selfish. We want Rush back. We want him to help act as a guide for us as our country navigates through the treacherous waters ahead. For the first time since 1988 for so many people, he’s not here with us.
But there is reason to rejoice, according to author Joel C. Rosenberg, who spent decades getting to know the man with the golden microphone. Rosenberg, who is the editor-in-chief of All Israel News, recently shared a testimony about how Limbaugh had surrendered his life completely to his faith before his Feb. 17 passing.
When asking the question of how Limbaugh’s incredible career came to be in a post published to his website, Rosenberg borrowed Limbaugh, writing it was that “Talent on loan from God,” which he stated wasn’t simply “a throwaway line” used by Limbaugh.
According to Rosenberg, “[I]t was true — but now God has taken him home.”
“He was only 70. Death came too fast. Took him too soon, as far as I’m concerned. Yet there is something important — and exciting — that you should know about Rush,” wrote Rosenberg. “Rather late in his life, in his final few years, Rush gave his life fully and completely to Jesus Christ.”
Rosenberg recalled how he met and was hired by Limbaugh in 1993, and how he got to know the man who inspired a nation to get involved.
But citing some of Limbaugh’s very public struggles, he surrendered, “I worried about Rush over the years. He had multiple marriages that failed and left him hurt, until his wonderful union to Kathryn that brought him great joy.”
“He battled with drug addiction to pain killers, and had to do it in the glare of the public eye. He lost his hearing, and but for the miracle of his cochlear implant would have lost his entire career,” wrote Rosenberg. “On air, he certainly made his share of mistakes. Often went right up to the line. Occasionally went over. But those things were symptoms. At his core, he was struggling with something deeper.”
Rosenberg noted that Limbaugh, who originally hailed from eastern Missouri, was raised in a Christian family. Like many Christians, Limbaugh had apparently at times found himself sliding back. As the author and friend to Limbaugh put it, “I believed he was struggling spiritually.”
“Jesus once said, ‘What profits a man to gain the whole world, but to lose his soul?’” wrote Rosenberg. “That’s what I feared for Rush. Maybe that seems presumptuous. Maybe it was. But it came out of my love for him. No other reason.”
“So, I would talk with him about the Lord when I could. We would email about lots of things, and occasionally I’d share a Bible verse with him,” he added. “But mostly I prayed for him — for the past 28 years, I asked the Lord to bless him and draw Rush into the kingdom of heaven. And I asked the Lord to bring other strong believers into his life that would be far more credible in Rush’s life than little old me.”
Prior to the coronavirus pandemic sweeping the globe last year, Rosenberg, an Israeli citizen, said he flew to South Florida to see Limbaugh after hearing of his diagnosis. Sadly, the meeting never occurred, as Limbaugh was not well enough, and eventually, Rosenberg had to return home.
But the author and journalist shared some wonderful news for those of us who also prayed for Limbaugh: Rush had found his path and was walking it with Jesus, and it happened before he ever became ill.
“I learned the greatest possible news – that just the year before, in 2019, Rush had given his life wholly and completely to the Lord Jesus Christ. Maybe he had made a decision to receive Christ by faith when he was much younger and had, like many of us, struggled to walk closely with Christ after that decision. That, I cannot say,” wrote Rosenberg.
Rosenberg said that the Limbaugh he’d know for decades was reading Scripture and praying “like he’d never done before.”
“He was growing spiritually and it was transforming him. And it wasn’t out of desperation. It wasn’t simply because he was contemplating his own death. It was because he had truly wrestled through the claims of Jesus for himself, and come to the conclusion that Jesus really did die on the cross, rise again, and was the Messiah, the Savior and the King of the universe,” wrote Rosenberg.
The author and friend to the beloved radio icon concluded that “The Lord made Rush an offer he couldn’t refuse – and Rush had the humility and the wisdom to say ‘Yes.’”
Rush Limbaugh, who left a void in so many hearts, has passed on from this life and is walking not on palm beach, but along the beaches of Heaven with our divine creator. Those of us who selfishly, and with the best of intentions, want him back, can rejoice knowing he’s paid off that loan and is no longer suffering from neither cancer nor wrestling with how to reconcile receiving that loan.
The world lost an irreplaceable man on Feb. 17, and the magnitude of that loss eludes the words in this language or any other. But Limbaugh was a man of God — having surrendered himself to Christ. Because of that, he’s now experiencing eternal joy. Is there any better news to hear than that?
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