Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Afterlife

Z at GollyGeez posted a Sunday Faith Blog about the afterlife.

It referred to an experience a neurosurgeon had, an after (or near) death experience.

It reminded me of something and I wrote this in comments:

There was another surgeon years ago who had a number of patients experiencing the "come to the light" phenomenon.
I told my mom about it one day at lunch when she was up to visit.
She told me that she had that same experience when on the operating table.
She got hepatitis through the blood they were giving here, went into shock and they pronounced her dead.
She described rising above the table, watching events unfold, started toward the light, was told to go back, it wasn't time yet.
She said she described events to the medical team she couldn't have known, being under a sheet, etc.
She hadn't heard of anyone else having this experience til I brought it up.
I believe in heaven. I have only a vague idea of what it will be.
I will take the scriptural over the anecdotal, however.
The only reason I believe in an afterlife is because one man died for my sins and to prove it, He rose from the dead.
He, however, did not give an account of what He saw (that I recall).
Have a blessed day. (end of comment)

I am still skeptical of all these experiences, including mom's.

A number of people will say that this encourages their faith.
That it proves there is an afterlife, therefore the Bible is true.

The Bible is clear and unbending on one concept:
Jesus said "No man comes to the Father but by Me."
Experiences that indicate people will go to heaven that have not met that criteria are suspect to me.
I believe that God and the spiritual realm exist.
I also believe that malevolent spiritual forces exist that try to deny to mankind access to the Father.
Spiritual experiences that show reward for following a path outside of one that Jesus has set are therefore contra-biblical.

I'm not saying those distracted or misled are demonic or demon-possessed,
Think Pinocchio and that island that wasn't all he thought it was.

Thanks Z, for an inspiration to write about this.
I'm curious to see what her other commenters think.


  1. I;m convinced there are things we will NEVER know the answer to until we cross over... I'll leave it at that! :-)

  2. Physics prove that energy of the electromagnetic spectrum travels at the speed of light, which is a time reference from which substantial amounts of time in our time reference are only moments. Maybe communication is possible from this reference, but then again, maybe it's an effort in futility, or requires more of an effort than those that passed are willing to pursue.

    I have friend that drowned. They were under long enough that it required heroic efforts by rescuers to bring them back. Their description of what they experienced was similar to many I've read about, but what was most notable was their peace and acceptance of much more after their time on this earth. Their faith was renewed and deepened by their experience.

    1. "more of an effort than those that passed are willing to pursue"
      There are some places I'd never want to leave to return here.

    2. We all probably have some place in mind with the same resolve, but I think of angels and the moments when people know their life was influenced by something that seems more than just coincidence.

  3. Maybe you're all too young to have experienced the following question in the environment in which it was asked.

    "Do you dream in color or black and white?" It was the kind of question that likely did not pre-date the earliest photographs, nor survive much past the age of black and white only televisions. But the percentage of people who swore that they dreamed only in black and white was quite large. And I think it quite markedly if not delightfully demonstrates the power of suggestion.

    Just as you doubt that all repeaters of this experience are likely to be going immediately to heaven given how reportedly stringent are the requirements, you have to wonder how powerful an effect all prior reports have on -- what to call it? -- the wishful thinking center of our brains.

    1. I remember that question.
      In my mom's case, and actually in the case of the surgeon I was referring to, none of them had "tainted" each other's testimony.
      But the notion has been popularized since.
      And so your point stands, and is a good one.

  4. My former client told me of his experience after being clinically dead on an operating table. I believe what his experienced was the truth. I keep meaning to write about it but I want to do the story justice.

    1. Do you mean what he experienced was true (not a deception) or it was true he experienced something, which I don't doubt.
      I believe we gain heaven by faith that works (Paul and James).
      If I assume someone I know that fits that description (my mom?) has this experience and that it is valid, meeting someone who doesn't and had one invalidates the true nature of the experience, as I'll trust scripture over experience.
      So then both experienced something, but what does it mean?
      I don't know, so I'll rely on scripture which tells me there's something better than this.
      I understand not all feel the same way, and I don't want that to get in the way of discourse.