In my time confined in Armstrongism, I spoke out boldly against Easter and those who observe it. I concentrated on the name, putting forward grossly inappropriate and highly questionable statements as fact - for instance that "Easter comes from the pagan goddess Eostre, who is Ishtar, and the Bible says God hates Ishtar." I fashioned verbal weapons regarding the pagan origins of eggs and bunnies and lilies, and I beat my fellow Christian with those weapons.
I claimed a billion+ men, women, and children, who call on the name of Jesus Christ and trust in Him for their hope and salvation, were no Christians at all but merely pagans fooling themselves straight into God's wrath.
I threw the term "heretics" at historical figures like Anicetus and Justin and Bede and many others. I was ignorant towards what these people wrote because they were heretics after all and why would I read the lies of heretics?
Rather, I poured over the material of Herbert W Armstrong to devour his facts and figures and private interpretations regarding these things as if those writings were the Gospel itself. I treated them as infallible. I searched for other information that agreed with me on these things. All else had to be lies!
I made excuse after distorted excuse for why the Bible, especially Galatians and Romans, weren't saying what they most certainly were saying, or why the timing of events and days wasn't what it most certainly was, or why this or that thing was a pagan, idolatrous sin when that was in reality not the case.
I disregarded the grace of Christ and treated the law as if the weekly Sabbath were nailed to the cross and died for my sins.
(I JON. 4: 17-19) 17 Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. 19 We love Him because He first loved us.
(I TIM. 6: 3-5) 3 If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, 4 he is proud, knowing nothing, but is obsessed with disputes and arguments over words, from which come envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions, 5 useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain [not just gaining money, but gaining salvation]. From such withdraw yourself.
In reality, the shackles had fallen off and the gate had opened wide now these one thousand nine hundred and eighty (give or take) years ago. I needed merely to walk out of the prison. What was I waiting for? It was as if the door had rusted solid and had fallen off. The shackles turn to dust at the slightest touch and float away in the sweet breeze. The prison walls had crumbled long ago and flowers had grown up over them. All that was ugly and fearful and the long shadows that gnashed at me... were all in my mind. All long gone in the comforting light of the Son, and the new day in Him.
Thank God for His wonderful gift of grace!