Life After Death, Pt. 4

Scripture: Revelation 16:14
This is the fourth in a series on what happens when you die. There are many different ideas about what happens at death, but what does the Bible say about death. What about out of body experiences?
When you post, you agree to the terms and conditions of our comments policy.
If you have a Bible question for Pastor Doug Batchelor or the Amazing Facts Bible answer team, please submit it by clicking here. Due to staff size, we are unable to answer Bible questions posted in the comments.
To help maintain a Christian environment, we closely moderate all comments.

  1. Please be patient. We strive to approve comments the day they are made, but please allow at least 24 hours for your comment to appear. Comments made on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday may not be approved until the following Monday.

  2. Comments that include name-calling, profanity, harassment, ridicule, etc. will be automatically deleted and the invitation to participate revoked.

  3. Comments containing URLs outside the family of Amazing Facts websites will not be approved.

  4. Comments containing telephone numbers or email addresses will not be approved.

  5. Comments off topic may be deleted.

  6. Please do not comment in languages other than English.

Please note: Approved comments do not constitute an endorsement by the ministry of Amazing Facts or by Pastor Doug Batchelor. This website allows dissenting comments and beliefs, but our comment sections are not a forum for ongoing debate.

Announcer: It's time now for Bible Talk. Join Gary Gibbs and John Bradshaw as they open the Bible to deepen our understanding of God's Word.

John Bradshaw: Hi and welcome to Bible Talk, where we talk about the Bible and how the Bible affects you today. I'm John Bradshaw.

Gary Gibbs: And I'm Gary Gibbs.

John: We've been talking recently on Bible Talk about what happens when you die and where are the dead. We've discovered that the Bible says that the dead are sleeping a dreamless sleep in the grave. I've wondered about this subject and the question has occurred to me, Gary. In fact, it's been asked of me before, so what, so what does it matter what you believe. Now in truth, if you're dead it doesn't matter at all because once you're dead, your experience is as though you die and go to Heaven that is because you die, you're not aware of anything that goes on. Next thing you're conscious of, Jesus has returned and off you go.

Gary: You could have been in the grave 2,000 years but since there is no consciousness of time, the next thought that you have go through your mind is the return of Christ.

John: You're unaware of any passage of time but it's for those of us who are left alive. We need to know what the Bible says on this so that we're not deceived, not led astray and we have an accurate conception of the character of God. Doesn't the Bible say there are going to be many, many deceptions about death down to the last days?

Gary: The Bible does and John, I want to remind our listeners, we always like to turn them back to the Bible and we have a special offer that we're going to give today if you write or call us at the number and the address we give you at the end of this program. Are the Dead really Dead? This is part of a series that we're doing here we've covered in quite detail, extensive detail that death is a peaceful, dreamless sleep until the resurrection. If you're just joining us right now in this series, you want to go back and you want to pick up those Bible texts so make sure you call and get this offer that we have today.

John: How about the lady I was talking to one day. I was sitting in her living room and she told me how Uncle Larry had died. She pointed down the hallway to the bedroom, you could see through the bedroom door, that was Uncle Larry's bedroom and after Uncle Larry died a few days later, she went back into that room. She steps into the room and music starts playing. Uncle Larry liked music, she steps out of the bedroom, the music stops, she goes in, the music starts, she goes out, the music stops, she goes in it starts, now it stops, you kind of have fun with that, couldn't you?

Gary: She needs to check her electrical wiring in her house.

John: Well, she knew she had this figured out, she said to me, "What I took from that was that Larry was trying to tell us something. Larry was letting us know that he was OK." Now, I want to be kind about this but it ought not take a genius to figure out that that wasn't Larry.

Gary: Well, the devil could do these things. This is the answer to your question you asked a moment ago, what does this matter? Satan wants to confuse us on the topic of death because he can deceive people, if we believe that our dead loved ones are intelligent beings on the other side who have more knowledge than us then we will willingly sit and learn from them. Let's look at this text out of 2 Corinthians 11...

John: Hang on, we will willingly sit and learn from them.

Gary: That's correct, that's what séances are. When I was a little boy, I played with the Ouija board asking questions, what's happening on the other side. If you're the spirit living up in Heaven, then you've got a perspective that you would die for.

John: OK.

Gary: No pun intended.

John: Right, sure.

Gary: 2 Corinthians 11:13, "For such our false apostles deceitful workers transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ, for they are the spirits of demons performing signs" the Bible says. In Revelations 16, the Bible says "Even Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light" there in two Corinthians 11 and they show up as false workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. In Revelations 16 says "These are the spirits of demons that will perform signs and wonders to deceive people."

John: Yeah, Matthew 24, Jesus talks about these things and I've met people who've been deceived by such things. Gentleman was coming to a seminar just like the seminars I do... it was not at my seminar, it was someone else's and he learned the truth about this and he went home and his dear wife appeared to him as she had been doing every night for thirty years. She was dead, she'd be there to talk with him yet again and he said "I know who you are and I know who you are not and it's time for you to go and don't come back in Jesus' name, you get out of here." And away she went and he never saw her again.

This sort of thing happens with enough frequency that I'm confident that there are people listening today who've had these kind of encounters and perhaps have these kind of encounters. Ultimately what does the devil seek to do, lead us away from God, lead us away from safety in Jesus.

Gary: That's why it's so important to understand what the Bible says on this, this one teaching can save a person a lot of sorrow more than probably any other teaching in the Bible because we all have experienced death, we all have loved ones who've died and if you haven't yet, you will.

John: That's right.

Gary: And then in that vulnerable moment when your heart is hurting, you're the most open for something to come along and to impersonate your dead loved one and gave you this assurance that they're OK on the other side.

John: If you analyze the messages given by Mary, this apparition that is supposed to be Mary, Mary has occasionally told people you ought to be studying your Bible. But there's much else that Mary has purportedly said to the people that she's appeared to that does not bear Biblical scrutiny that ultimately leads people away from being faithful and following the Bible. You see that's a cause of great concern because the Bible is our foundation. Now, if you don't believe the Bible is your foundation, you've got to listen to Mary or Mickey Mouse or anybody. It's not going to matter at all because you've moved off the Biblical platform but if you care about the Bible being your foundation of faith and your guide for a relationship with Jesus Christ, this would concern you greatly.

Gary: Now, I believe and I know the Bible teaches death is a peaceful sleep but I don't believe it's beyond the possibility of God to comfort us at times with say a dream of our dead loved one in Heaven.

John: I'm glad you mentioned that, I agree with that.

Gary: Now, just because we see them in Heaven, in our dream, it doesn't mean that they're there right then. Paul says in Romans that God calls those things that aren't as though they were because He foreshortens time. George dies here in 1969. God may give you a dream comforting you that this loved one of yours is in Heaven well whenever Jesus comes but He doesn't fill in the gaps there. We have an example of that in Revelations seven where John looks up in Heaven, verse 14 and he sees this host of redeemed people there and he's wondering who are they and he hears the answer, these are those who came out of great tribulation. These are those who the martyrs who died during the middle ages and other periods of tribulation.

John: Yet that tribulation time hadn't come.

Gary: Hadn't even come at that point and yet he's already showing him in Heaven and so God was just shortening it to give those martyrs when they would go thru the tribulation that one day they are going to receive their reward. If you've had a dream and I'm speaking to our listeners here, if you had a dream God has comforted you with a loved one being in Heaven, take the comfort for what it is.

John: Sure.

Gary: Don't take it as a statement of teaching and doctrine if this person is in Heaven right now. Now, if you have talked to one of these dead loved ones and they've been giving you instruction for you to follow, that's when the red alarm lights should go off but if they talk to you in a dream and say "I'm OK", that's just God comforting you.

John: I think we can acknowledge that even with the biblical knowledge that we have and there's plenty of it, we can't explain everything about what happens and some of these mysterious things. What we can do though is nail down the parameters that God wants us to operate with Him. The dead are asleep, the dead are not in Heaven, the dead are not praising the Lord, the dead do not know anything. These things are clear, one area that it gets a little murky is where people have this out of body experiences.

Gary: John I had a friend who is a nurse and narcissist, have to think about how to say that, nurse and narcissist and he studied...

John: You might want to think again.

Gary: He studied this topic in the Bible and he says, "Listen, I know what happens when a person dies. I've seen enough people die on the table and then they're resuscitated, they come back and they do a lot of surgeries." They come back and they say they see this bright light, this great light. They heard God calling them and then God tells them "No it's not time yet" and they are sent back and they come back and they say "Listen, I was floating out of my body, I was above my body. I saw what your folks were doing and here's what you said." That experience that he had talking to this people in his mind was more important than what he was reading in the Bible.

John: You see you cannot allow your experience to shape what you believe about the Bible. You've got to read the Bible so that you can then correctly evaluate what your experience is. People have this out-of-body experiences and I have no doubt that people have them. I have never had them but there are a number of ways you can experience them. They say that test pilots and centrifuges spinning round and round, their bodies on a great G-force they've been known of their out-of-body experiences. You can manipulate a certain region in the cerebral cortex and induce one, psyche it on drugs...

Gary: The angular gyrus in the brain was discovered. A Swiss scientist found that they could trigger these out-of-body experiences with electrical stimulation to... it's right behind the right ear, the angular gyrus and cause that out-of-body experience.

John: They say that when that little part of the brain misfires when the brain is under great stress. This is why man, you're on the operating table, you're nearly dead, your body is full of drugs, somewhere back in your consciousness perhaps you know, boy I'm about to lose it here and things aren't looking good but the medical staff is frantic, of course. You're going to have some kind of crazy thing going on in your head, a little sensation of some kind; of course it would be then. I had a girl tell me, a young woman tell me, they were going to do all this cocaine and I took so much that my friends thought that I was dead and they dumped me under a hedge and they left me there.

I think I asked about what kind of friend she had, nevertheless they were her friends. She said "And then I had an out-of-body experience and I left my body and so I know that I've got a soul that floats around." I say "Here's what I know, I know that you took way too much cocaine and you shouldn't be doing that."

She's not going to say "You know I sat down to breakfast and instead of one banana, I ate seven bananas and I had an out-of-body experience." She's saying I snort on all of this cocaine and I underwent this really crazy phenomenon. Drugs will do that but [inaudible 11:32] is not going to do that to you.

Gary: That's why you take drugs to have those out-of-body experiences.

John: I guess she shouldn't have been complaining.

Gary: There's another reason you might have the out-of-body experience. This is from September 19, 2002, AP signs report, says "Researchers have suggested that out-of-body experiences occurs brain cells die from lack of oxygen or when the brain releases pain-reducing chemicals called endorphins." Now think about it, you die, your blood stops pumping through your body so you're not getting fresh oxygen to your brain but there's still residual oxygen there. And so you have the ability to think some thoughts and they're going to start getting distorted and start thinking weird but there are still residual oxygen there.

If you're revived during that time, you're going to come back and you're going to remember these hallucinations that you had when you had the lack of oxygen to the brain and science is pointing to this as one of the possible resources for out-of-body experiences.

John: Many, many deceptions and this is something that the Christian wants to guard against where you can get off the biblical position and on to another position that originated with the father of lies when he said in the beginning you will not surely die. God wants us to stand right on the Bible with His son Jesus Christ.

Gary: It is the only safe place, friend. Study the Bible, know what the Bible says and then test your experience against the word of God.

John: Let God's word be that which evaluates your experience and not the other way around and remember God loves you and Jesus is the resurrection and the life and we are glad you joined us today. Join us next time for more here on Bible Talk. [music]

Male Announcer: If you'd like more information on what we've been studying today, we have a comprehensive Bible study guide we'd love to share with you that's absolutely free. This study includes many of the texts we've just discussed and expands on the subject including information you'll want to know. To receive this free, informative, Bible study guide, simply call, write or email and ask for "Are the Dead really Dead?" The toll free number is 866-BIBLE-SAYS. That's 866-242-5372. You can write to us at Bible Talk, P.O. Box 1058, Roseville, California 95678. Or email us at Bible Talk has been produced in association with Amazing Facts in the studios of Life Talk Radio.

Share a Prayer Request
Ask a Bible Question



Prayer Request:

Share a Prayer Request


Bible Question:

Ask a Bible Question