IN RECENT YEARS A NUMBER OF PROMINENT DOCTORS have observed and documented hundreds of cases of what they call “clinical deaths.” Their patients actually died, and all vital functions ceased for from several minutes up to half an hour, but then the patients revived. Hundreds of these survivors of death told amazingly similar accounts of their life-after-death experiences.
Almost all of them said it was a marvelous feeling, like floating on air, no longer weighed down by their physical bodies. Their anxieties and worries suddenly vanished as they realized that although their bodies were dead, their spirits were still very much alive and God was lovingly caring for them. In almost every account, those who returned from such experiences had a great change in their outlook on life. They were more loving, more full of faith, found greater purpose in living, and were convinced that they had been spared from death so that they could return and fulfill their mission in this life. (For documented accounts of more than 200 life-after-death experiences, read Life After Life by Dr. Raymond A. Moody, Jr.)
According to God’s Word, the next life is not so terribly different from this present existence that we can’t comprehend it. We are going to be much the same as we are now, except that our eternal bodies are going to be supernatural, like the one Jesus had after He was resurrected (Philippians 3:21; 1 John 3:2). Jesus was able to materialize or dematerialize, appear or disappear. Think of that! He could pass from one dimension to the other, and walk through locked doors and solid walls (John 20:19,26).
But just because we’ll have spiritual bodies doesn’t mean we won’t still be ourselves. We’re going to have a lot of the same characteristics that we have now, just as Jesus did after His resurrection. He could eat and drink and others could still touch Him as well as see Him, yet He was in a miraculous supernatural body, His new resurrected body (Luke 24:36-43).
You are still going to be you! You’re even going to look a lot the same, only better—much better! You’ll be much better off in every way, and you’ll be in more direct communication with the Lord, experiencing the fullness of God’s love and the realities of the world to come!
Those experiences of life after death that some have had are exceptional cases, of course, and it’s obvious that most people do not come back after passing on. However, when your time comes, death is not something you should fear.
Contrary to the idea some people seem to have, God is not a cruel tyrant or some sort of monster who is trying to frighten everyone into Hell, but rather a loving and merciful Father who is trying to love everyone into Heaven. “God is love” (1 John 4:8), and He wants to help and save you and make you happy with His love. In fact, this is why He created you: to love and enjoy Him forever, now and in the life to come.
But sad to say, at some time or other we’ve all been selfish, mean, unloving, or unkind to others—even to God! “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). None of us deserve to go to Heaven. But the Bible says that although “the wages of sin is death, the gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ, our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
Receiving God’s free gift of eternal life is like receiving a pardon from the guilt of sin. God loves you so much, He gave Jesus to die in your place, to take your punishment for you (John 3:16). This is why Jesus could promise those who believe in Him that they “shall not taste of death” (Matthew 16:28). If we receive Jesus and His free gift of eternal life, our spirits—the real us—will never die or experience the agony of separation from God, even when our physical bodies die. “He who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment [condemnation], but has passed from death into life” (John 5:24).
If you haven’t yet received Jesus into your heart, you can right now by praying this prayer:
Jesus, I believe that You are the Son of God and that You died for me. Please forgive me for all my sins. I ask You now to come into my heart and give me Your gift of eternal life. Help me to love You, and to love others by telling them about You and Your love and truth. Amen.
Once you have Jesus in your heart, you have made the most important preparation for your life, as well as death. And when your time comes to die, well, hallelujah! You will have finished your earthly task. It will be your graduation day—graduation to the heavenly world of the hereafter where you will receive a glorious crown of eternal life and be with God and Jesus and your loved ones forever! We who know Jesus will awaken in the heavenly kingdom of God with peace and plenty and love for all forever! Are you ready?
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