George Ritchie, the incredible account by a medical doctor of the time as a
20-year-old that he had a near-death
experience in which he saw the afterlife -- including spirits that roam the
earth -- and encountered Jesus. In vivid, well-written, can't-put-it-down prose
he details how it felt to leave his body and how he was shown every single event
and thought in his life by a totally loving Jesus!
DEPICTIONS OF THE AFTERLIFE MATCH THE BIBLE IN RELATING JEWEL-LIKE STRUCTURES, LANDSCAPES
There are many places in the Bible with supernal descriptions of Heaven that closely -- one could say, convincingly -- resemble the verbiage of those modern folks who barely escape death and say that while unconscious, and even declared deceased, they saw the hereafter.
Such a description comes early in Scripture when in Exodus Moses goes up the mountain with Aaron and seventy elders and beholds the God of Israel under Whose feet "there appeared to be sapphire tile work, as clear as the sky itself."
This is right in line with the many "near-deathers" who've described roads and structures in Heaven as have been fashioned with something that was jewel-like or golden or crystal yet also translucent.
A new twist on the structures of Heaven comes to us from a trial attorney name Chris Markey, 61, who died at 8:15 a.m. and again at 10:15 a.m. on October 10, 2006 in the I.C.U. at Rush Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center in Chicago after a triple bypass operation. The first "death" lasted for six minutes and the second thirteen. Said Markey to researchers:
"I'm here to tell you that death is so instantaneous it's unbelievable, less time than to roll over in bed.
"A [spirit] came to meet me. He said, 'Chris, call me Gabe; come with me. Follow me.' So I went with him up this tunnel.
"We go to this incredible room. The room had floors and walls. It had no ceiling. It was incredibly bright and lit. There was absolutely no climate whatsoever: no wind, no heat. no cold. There were 250 to three hundred people there, waiting to see -- me!
"They hugged me. They all kissed me. They were so thrilled to see me. They were all shiny, radiant. They were communicating a level of affection I had never experienced before -- just beauty, shining, energy, love. It came time for my examination -- whether I could get into paradise.
"Clearly this was paradise. They were all around me, very quiet, and the 'movie' of my life started. And way up behind me there was this spiral-pointed mountain and the spiral was moving, because there were so many people coming up and going back, coming up and going back. And at the top was this mountain man with beard and long hair. It could only be Jesus. He kept asking the questions from His mind to my mind. You didn't really hear sound. The question was clearly framed and right at you. And it was only one question repeated over and over and over again: 'At that time in your life, what did you do for your fellow man?' I remember not being to call up much from when I was a little kid. I went to a Catholic grammar school and we went to Mass before noon every day. We had to cross two dangerous streets, and from sixth to eighth grade they picked me to be a crossing guard and that picture came right out of the 'movie.' I had just taken it so seriously to protect those little kids."
That was significant to God: that Markey -- for no selfish reason -- wanted to help and protect others.
The evaluation of one's lifetime is common as are the splendid vistas, which again reflect back to Scripture. In Ezekiel we see depictions of the Garden of God in terms of ruby, topaz, diamond, beryl, onyx, jasper, turquoise and emerald. In Revelation 21:10 it says, "and he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. Her brilliance was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper." In 21:19-21 it describes a setting in which "the wall was jasper; and the city was pure gold, like clear glass. The foundation stones of the city wall were adorned with every kind of precious stone.
"The first foundation stone was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, chalcedony; the fourth, emerald; the fifth, sardonyx; the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolite; the eighth, beryl; the ninth, topaz; the tenth, chrysoprase; the eleventh, jacinth; the twelfth, amethyst. And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; each one of the gates was a single pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass."
Many are those who describe golden roads or walls that were crystal-like with walls they could see through. It is a realm where "things" seem fashioned from light (for our discernment).
In the description of a woman named Alice Morrison-Mays who nearly died at the Marine Hospital in New Orleans, " I found myself in a place of such beauty and peace. It was timeless and spaceless. I was aware of delicate and shifting hues of colors with their accompanying rainbows of 'sound,' though there was no noise in this sound. It might have felt like wind and bells, were it earthly. I 'hung' there -- floating. Then I became aware of other loving, caring beings hovering near me. Their presence was so welcoming and nurturing. They appeared 'formless' in the way I was accustomed by now to seeing things. I don't know how to describe them. I was aware of some bearded male figures in white robes in a semicircle around me. The atmosphere became blended as though made of translucent clouds. I watched as these clouds and their delicate shifting colors moved through and around us."
[resources: afterlife books and Michael Brown retreat, Omaha
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