Do near death experiences reveal truth about the spiritual world?
Pastor Doug: Hi - welcome to the program.
Caller: You know how people die, like if they're on their deathbed, you know they're in the hospital, they go flat line, my father told me that he rose up out of his body and saw them operating on him. And I hear a lot of people state that. Does God allow people to rise out of their body to look at themselves? And if so what is the purpose of Him doing so?
Pastor Doug: Well that's a good question. You know there are a lot of people who have had these, what they call, near-death experiences. The most important thing to remember is never base your understanding of truth on a person's personal experience. Always base it on the Word of God.
The reason I say that is when a person is on a hospital operating table and their heart stops beating or they're near death and they have a vision or they have an experience, a doctor explained to me one time that in many cases what has happened is that their brain is robbed of oxygen during that time and - scuba divers know how this can happen. It's very dangerous.
When you don't get the proper amount of oxygen you can hallucinate and you can have visions and it's a biological occurrence. And so a person who says that they rose out of their body and they had a dream sometimes it's just a physiological happening because of a lack of oxygen. Sometimes God could be trying to speak to them personally. We all have dreams where God talks to us personally - but never build your theology on these dreams or near-death experiences because they're all different and they contradict each other. Some of these dreams teach reincarnation and the Bible certainly doesn't teach that.