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Tag Archives: near death experiences

Greatest Hits

The term “greatest hits” often refers to a best of album from an artist, band or group.  This collection of songs highlights a musicians career, selecting the best, most popular and top singles.  The Eagles’ were one of the first groups to release a greatest hits album in 1976.  Shows like “Whose Line is it Anyway” have a comedy skit where entertainers such as Wayne Brady, Charles Esten and Brad Sherwood make up fictional best of and greatest hit songs.

There are also many other signs (attesting miracles) that Jesus performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these have been written so that you may believe [with a deep, abiding trust] that Jesus is the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed), the Son of God; and that by believing [and trusting in and relying on Him] you may have life in His name, John 20:30-31.

The Bible contains God’s version of greatest hits.  The four gospels contain 37 miracles performed by Jesus.  These miracles can be described as Jesus’ best of magical moments.  According to John, if all of Jesus’ miracles were written down, these volumes would not fit into the Library of Congress.  Based upon the accounts of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, Jesus performed miracles every day for three years.  Thus, the 37 selected demonstrate that Jesus is the master of all trades, defying death and science.

And there are also many other things which Jesus did, which if they were recorded one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written, John 21:25.

Based upon individuals who have had a near death experience, each person will witness a video, a movie reel of your entire life.  This screen plays your greatest hits as well as your most embarrassing moments.  After this review of your life has finished playing, judgement awaits.  According to the apostle Paul, there is no one righteous, not even one, Romans 3:10.  Due to this painful reality, there is only one proper response, Romans 7:24-25, thanks be to God for Christ our deliverer.  While the world seems to focus their attention on greatest hits, God calls lost souls to repentance.  May the Lord change our hearts before Judgement Day arrives.

by Jay Mankus

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Seeing Criticism for What it Is

The book definition for criticism is the expression of disapproval of someone or something based upon a perceived fault or mistake.  The key word here is perceived as modern criticism is usually based upon ideology.  Subsequently, if your beliefs, convictions or worldview varies from the socially acceptable norm, condemnation, denunciation and nitpicking will arrive fast and furious.  When the media chimes in, criticism often snowballs like an avalanche.

They preached the good news to that city and made many disciples, then they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch, 22 strengthening and establishing the hearts of the disciples; encouraging them to remain firm in the faith, saying, “It is through many tribulations and hardships that we must enter the kingdom of God,” Acts 14:21-22.

Shortly after being stoned by his spiritual opponents, on the verge of death, the apostle Paul gets back on his feet to share a lesson learned from this near death experience.  As he walked back to the same town where leaders wanted to kill him, Paul realized that anyone who wants to preach the good news about Jesus Christ must embrace hardship and tribulations.  Essentially, Paul is saying “don’t take religious criticism personally as they hated Jesus first,”

Consider it nothing but joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing, James 1:2-4.

James, the earthly brother of Jesus builds upon Paul’s words in Lystra.  Trials build character resulting in spiritual maturity.  While criticism can and will be deserved from time to time, Christians must see criticism for what it is, a refining process that leads to genuine faith.  The more faith is tested, endurance and inner peace will shine through.  No one likes to be criticized, but when you see it through the lens of the Bible, spiritual growth is achieved.

by Jay Mankus

Undaunted

Earlier in the week, I watched a documentary on near death experiences.  Similar to an episode of Project Afterlife, Destination America examined the experiences of two individuals who flat lined, then came back to life.  During these interviews, the man and woman describe their moments hovering above their bodies and the heaven and hell like encounters that followed.  Rarely do people get second chances at life, but for those granted a special exception, perspectives on life radically change.

Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen, Hebrews 13:20-21.

While I don’t recall the exact title, this show tried to help others understand unsolved mysteries about life.  The man selected for this episode was a neuro surgeon, spending a large portion of his career saving the lives of others.  In this scenario, the roles were reversed as his life slipped slowly away after several seizures.  His recollections of the afterlife altered the path of his new life.  This surgeon recalls a place similar to the accounts of hell in the Bible.  Dark, alone and filled with a constant eerie noise, it didn’t take long for panic to set in.  Upon waking up days later, his wife and son could see the fear in his eyes.  Like the reality show Scared Straight, this man didn’t need to go to prison to quickly turn his life over to God.

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect, Romans 12:2.

Meanwhile, the woman who was in a car accident, went through a much more pleasant experience.  Like scenes from the I Saw Heaven, this individual is reunited with family members who had died and gone to heaven.  She details one conversation, the last before waking up in the hospital.  An aunt tells this woman that her work on earth is not finished.  The Lord is sending you back to complete the purpose and will God has for you.  “Live fearlessly,” undaunted by the barriers and obstacles that exist.  After hearing this message, I feel like this applies to all believers, hoping to please God.  May this testimony inspire you to go through life undaunted, trusting in angels, divine intervention and God’s power to cross the finish line on earth.

by Jay Mankus

The Place of Restless Souls

In Episode 3 of Project Afterlife, a patient goes to a nearby hospital for a routine procedure.  When an infection is found, this surgery turns into a nightmare, leading to an unexpected death.  During a 45 minute period, this man saw a river, separating two worlds.  To his left, restless souls cried out for help.  On his right, peace, joy and love is displayed.  Before facing judgment, relatives wrestled with God until his soul was resurrected through prayer.

I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture, John 10:9.

Near death experiences are nothing new.  However, now books are being replaced by you tubes, pod casts and testimonies of those who died momentarily.  As time seems to stand still, individuals recount vivid encounters of heaven.  In this realm, science is replaced by faith.  Though some may embellish to get attention, too many people have had similar experiences which point to another life after this world is through.

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full, John 10:10.

Perhaps reflecting on this present life may provide insight and direction in the future.  Leaders of the past have proclaimed life is what you make it.  To an extent this is true, but this doesn’t explain countless souls who are restless, searching for the meaning to life.  Better to ponder now than after your life is gone.  Therefore, as you meander through good and bad times, ask Jesus to help you find an abundant life, void of restless souls.

by Jay Mankus

 

Project Afterlife

Yesterday,  I wrote a blog called When the Holy Spirit Takes Over.  Little did I know that these exact words were used by a doctor who helped raise a man from the dead in the pilot episode of Project Afterlife.  Following in the footsteps of It’s a Miracle on Pax Television, Destination America’s new show interviews eyewitnesses and individuals who have died for a short period of time before coming back to life.

Behold, I will bring to it health and healing, and I will heal them and reveal to them abundance of prosperity and security, Jeremiah 33:6.

About a year ago, I started a conversation with a co-worker.  Taking an unusual, yet interesting turn, this man revealed that years earlier he died and came back to life.  Arrested for underage drinking, this teenager died in the back of a cop car.  Although his memory is blurred, the next thing he remembers is waking in a hospital bed.  Due to his severe condition, the police officer never issued a ticket, giving him a second chance just as God gave this man a new lease on life.

And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven, James 5:15.

There will always be skeptics of healing, miracles and raising someone from the dead.  Especially, if you believe the Spirit pored out upon the disciples on the Day of Pentecost ceased following their deaths, limited to first century apostles.  Yet, if you check out Project Afterlife next Sunday night at 10pm eastern time, maybe your beliefs will be swayed.  Either way, sit back, listen to the testimonies shared and be open to the healing power of Christ.

by Jay Mankus

 

Don’t Be Late to the Party

Cinderella was held up, late to the ball due to jealous step sisters.  David wasn’t even invited, until a prophet passed on his brothers, getting a late invitation, 1 Samuel 16:10.   Today, many try to play it cool, arriving casually late to make a grand entrance.

In life, there is one party you don’t want to be late to or forget about.  The prodigal son became engrossed in his own sinful desires, seeking to indulge in the pleasures of this world, Luke 15:13.  This invisible force is one of the greatest distractions, 1 John 2:15-17, causing half of the 10 virgins to miss the party entirely, Matthew 25:10-13.

At a funeral, heaven is often assumed, whether you made your reservations or not, 1 John 5:13.  Some may get a second chance, surviving a near death experience.  Regardless of the cards you are dealt, the road you choose lies in the choices you make, Deuteronomy 30:15.  Don’t be late to the final party in life or else you’ll have eternity to regret it.

by Jay Mankus

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