Jesus In Near Death Experiences (NDEs)
I have seen thousands of written descriptions of NDEs in the handwriting of the NDErs themselves, adding to my notes from interviews and books. There is a massive amount of first-hand material to witness to Jesus speaking to NDErs in the afterlife nowadays. In this article for Charisma I will limit quotes to a few of the examples given in my previous book “Living Beyond: Making Sense of Near Death Experiences”. All quotes, over 260 in fact, are fully referenced in it.
Many an atheist and cynic, or member of another religion, has reported shock at discovering death is not the end, and further surprise at meeting subsequently with Jesus Christ during an afterlife interview process — and seeing their lives in pictorial format in amazing detail—in what can be termed the Life Review.
But take heart! It seems that Jesus appears to NDErs in a way that does not frighten them but allows them to quickly relax while they are with him.
Mahesh Chavda, a Hindu at the time, says Jesus placed a hand on his shoulder and addressed him as ‘My little brother’, which meant a great deal to him.
The question, though, must be asked: ‘Why is it Jesus or God the Father who are, almost exclusively, the ones who interview the NDEr in the afterlife?’ I decided to seek an expert opinion. The Near Death Experience Research Foundation provides the largest collection of written Near Death Experiences (NDEs) on the web — over 4500 posted until today. It was set up by Jeffrey Long M.D. author of the New York Times bestseller “Evidence of the Afterlife”. I wrote on the 14th April 2014 to Dr Jeffrey Long as the founder of NDERF:
I have read in several books the principle that during an NDE the NDEr may see religious figures from their own religion e.g. Islamists see Mohammed, Buddhists see Buddha etc. I have skirted your web page accounts and those of IANDS without finding any of these accounts in the thousands of reports. So, is this a theory without experiential support, or can you direct me to what you believe are valid confirmatory accounts please?
Dr Long kindly responded:
I am aware of those who have written that non-Christian NDErs see religious figures from their own religion, but those who wrote that generally gave no examples to support this. Jesus makes a regular appearance in NDEs. I have over 100 NDEs that encountered or were aware of Jesus in their experiences.
And so, for the present, I must reject the model commonly bandied about that says people see whoever it is that they suppose to be their religion’s founder when the Figure of Light appears to them in an NDE — that sincere Buddhists will see Buddha, and faithful Muslims will see Mohammed etc. Perhaps this inaccurate view regarding the appearance of religious leaders in NDEs has arisen because of hopes that all religions are equal and simply different ways to approach God? I don’t know whether this is the answer. However, the reality is that many thousands of reported NDEs across the world in different cultures do not support this view.
For interest, I looked further at the only NDE that I could find after prolonged searching that claimed all religions see their own leader. I applied internal and external tests for being a reliable witness to that claimant, who failed miserably in both dimensions. Consequently, until reliable witnesses begin saying the same thing, I must discount that hypothesis.
However, there are many genuine NDEs recorded by reliable witnesses who claim the reverse, who have identified Jesus as having met them in an afterlife venue, even if they had no interest or belief in him previously. Sometimes Jesus has led them through their Life Review, on most occasions despite no such prior expectations on the part of the NDEr.
Now to quote some examples taken from “Living Beyond”, starting with Vicki Umipeg, who was born blind on Earth, but could see perfectly in the afterlife. (Other NDErs who lost faculties on Earth, have reported these to be restored in the afterlife, including memory, which must be encouraging to many of us.)
Vicki Umipeg was born blind, her optic nerve having been completely destroyed at birth because of excess of oxygen delivered to her in an incubator. She was one of a number of blind people investigated by Kenneth Ring and Sharon Cooper, 80% of who could see during their NDEs. Vicki said she had a hard time relating to sight, as it was entirely novel to her.
During her NDE, she met Jesus, who greeted her tenderly. He communicated telepathically to her: ‘Isn’t it wonderful? Everything is beautiful here, and it fits together. And you’ll find that. But you can’t stay here now. It’s not your time to be here yet and you have to go back.’
Vicki objected, ‘No, I want to stay with you!’
Vicki, being blind, had never seen a picture of Jesus, so her description is especially interesting. ‘I was real close to him. He actually hugged me. He embraced me, and I was very close to him. And I felt his beard and his hair. His hair wasn’t curly, but a bit coarse, dropping well below his shoulders.’ And his eyes? ‘They were piercing eyes,’ she asserted. ‘It was like they permeated every part of me, but not in a mean way. It was like you couldn’t lie about anything, and he just looked everywhere and could see everything. And his beard had very bright lights in it. It was like lights came out of it. He had nothing on his feet. He had this kind of robe on that didn’t come all the way down to his feet.’
Jesus reassured Vicki that she would come back, but that for now she had to return to Earth ‘and learn and teach more about loving and forgiving’ and also to ‘let them know of this day and tell them that I AM’. [This is his identification with the eternal divinity — as in John 8:58 — ‘Before Abraham was, I AM’.]
Vicki did not want to return, but Jesus sweetened the pill by telling her she needed to go back to have her children, something Vicki desperately wanted. She had to return also ‘to learn and teach more about love and forgiving.’
Before sending Vicki back, Jesus led her through her visual Life Review gently, starting with her birth. At last she could see all the meaningful people in her life!
Since her return, Vicki has had the joy of mothering three children of her own.
Vicki is again totally blind back on Earth—but knows that perfect sight awaits her in the afterlife.
Susan (an anorexic who died from kidney failure):
The second I saw him (Jesus) I started to cry.
I could feel his compassion for me. He comforted me as I told him how people on Earth had wronged me because of my condition and how I had suffered with anorexia. He was so, so kind. He told me that he knew all of that and that it was going to be all right.
I asked him if he promised and he said, ‘Yes.’
I told him something that maybe I shouldn’t have. I said to him, ‘You are a very handsome man.’
He just laughed. Then I laughed. It was such a great time.
I noted his appearance. He was about 5'9” and probably weighed about 150 pounds. He was slim, with dark brown hair and brown eyes. There were so many people around him; but, and this is what touches me so much, I was able to go right to him and talk to him. It’s not like it would be here. You can’t just go up to someone that important and talk to them. But with Jesus you can.
He then told me to go back and tell everyone what I had seen. I said I would (but didn’t, for some years). Then he hugged me. It felt like a million volts of electricity going through my body from his hug, I couldn’t stand up because of the intense power I felt coming from him.
Susan was one of the few whose return was accompanied by a healing — she began eating normally right away and tests showed her kidneys in addition had been healed; ‘Now, nine years later, I went from weighing 64 to 135 pounds. I have never had any kidney problems or any other kind of health problems that anorexia can cause. I am fine. I am healthy.’
Lynn, age 13 years: ‘I knew this light was Christ. I leaned against it for one moment and then asked my question. “Dear Jesus, is it true that you gave me this heart condition so that I would have a cross to carry like you did?” Sister Agnes, my sixth-grade teacher, had told me that my heart condition was my cross to bear from Christ.
I heard the voice of Christ vibrate through me as he said, ‘No, this heart condition of yours is not a cross from me for you to bear. This heart condition is a challenge to help you grow and stay compassionate. Now, go back.’
As I walked back, my grandmother told me that my father was going to leave my mother and that I would be my mother’s strength.’
Sadly, this happened, but Lynn had been prepared for the trauma and challenges. She proved to be sufficiently compassionate to fulfil this demanding mission for one so young.’
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