Sid Roth - Stories of People Who Died and Came Back
Hello! Sid Roth here. Welcome to my world, where it's naturally supernatural! My guest was an agnostic engineer that studied over 1,000 people for 35 years that had near-death experiences. Some saw Heaven; some saw Hell. Now he challenges anyone, anywhere to disbelieve in life after death, after examining his research. Next on "It's Supernatural"!
Sid Roth: Well, you know I see NDE, near-death experiences, more and more. What is your definition of a near-death experience, John?
John: Well, it's when someone has a clinical death, like their heart actually stops and then they're resuscitated. In some cases, their brainwaves stop. They're dead, but modern medicine resuscitates them. In some cases, they're on the verge of death, but what's common is they come back and talk about their experience of a life beyond this life. I interviewed doctors, bank presidents, college professors, commercial airline pilots, pastors, little kids, people of all socioeconomic backgrounds, and yet they're consistent! There are commonalities of what they say! And that's what I was trying to do, writing "Imagine Heaven", is tie them together with what the Bible has already told us! And you see a picture unfold before you of the life to come.
Sid Roth: You know what the thing that just literally blew me away, and after talking with you I know you too, people born blind! Well, tell me about Vicky.
John: Yeah. Yeah, so in "Imagine Heaven" I take about 100 of the 1,000 or so near death experiences I studied, and I, and I'm showing through their eyes what happened, and how it fits with the Bible. But the ones, there are about 3 in there, of blind people. And I think this is one of the things that have has convinced skeptics definitely convinced me: The blind people see! So when they die, like Vicky, um she was in an auto accident. She had been blind from birth, never seen.
Sid Roth: Um hmm.
John: She leaves her body and this is common, then she's looking down at the site of the accident, um, and later she's taken to the hospital. And then she's above the hospital bed, and she doesn't know what it is she's experiencing, she doesn't have words for it. And then she notices there's a ring on this body of this girl she's looking at and it's her ring! and she recognized it. And she has long hair, so she recognizes, "I must be dead", she didn't know. Because you feel, they say, more alive than you've ever felt before! So this is this is not less real, this is more real, than what we experience here. She's taken then through a, she didn't know what to call it, there was light, and color, and then suddenly none. She comes out on this pastoral like garden area of beautiful grass and trees and flowers, and a vast number of people. And all the people, and even the flowers and the leaves and everything was shining with this light, but the light didn't shine on things. It came out of everything! And she said the light was also love. And so it was like love, and light, and life coming out of everything. Now what's fascinating to me is that blind people consistently say what sighted people say, that the light of Heaven comes out of everything! Now how would a blind person ever get that idea? You wouldn't hear it here. Light shines on things, not out of things, right? And commonly, people talk about this welcoming committee of their friends, or relatives, or others who had gone on before. Vicky, she grew up in in a home for blind children, and there were two girls, Debbie and Diane, who had died at 9 and age 11.
Sid Roth: Hmm.
John: She sees them, and they hug, they recognize each other. She said they were in their prime, and they were whole and healthy. And then she sees Jesus, and He is brighter than any of them, filled with love. She hugs Him. The hug, she said, was unlike any hug you've ever experienced. She describes Him like we would see Jesus! And then and then Jesus tells her, "It's not your time yet. You must go back", and she goes back. And what's fascinating, she was able to see Debbie and Diane and herself, but she didn't see that, because she was blind, and yet she was able to explain it, and the housemother verified it. In chapter 2 of "Imagine Heaven", I write about skeptical doctors in the afterlife, of what convinced so many skeptical oncologists, cardiologists, that I studied or that I interviewed, was that many people, when they die, they'll be above the operating table. Like one doctor I interviewed, Dr. Sabum said this one patient was above the operating table when their heart stopped during surgery, and noticed that the other surgeon there had failed to wear scuffs over his white shoes, and described the shoes. Another patient was having um, had a brain aneurysm. They drained their entire body of all blood, stopped the brainwaves, covered the eyes, put clickers in there to make sure there were no senses, at all. And yet, she's above the table, and is able to describe what went wrong with the procedure, and how they had to put something in her artery in her leg, could describe the saw that looked more like a toothbrush with a socket set, she said, not what you would think of a saw to
Sid Roth: How do these doctors...
John: Again, I
Sid Roth: How do they... Wait, they have no grid for this!
John: Well, and this has been written up in the Journal of the American Medical Association, in Europe's most prestigious medical journal, The Lancet, 900 scholarly publications! And so, there is incredible evidence that there is, in fact, life after death! But what I find even more fascinating is when you look, everyone is a bit different, and they all have their interpretation of it, because truly, it's an experience of life beyond our dimensions. There are there's beauty, there are mountains, and trees, and flowers, but all of it, they say, they experience not with 5 senses, more like with 50 senses! What I've come to believe is that this experience is the shadow of the real thing.
Sid Roth: Now we have it reversed! Most of us hang on to Earth, for dear life! But we should be hanging onto Heaven for dear life!
Sid Roth: You know what I'd like to find out, when we come back, there are so many and this is the greatest apologetic that there is a Heaven, the Bible is true, Jesus is real! By interviewing some 1,000 people, he found patterns of things that almost all the people had, which then give us real insight into what Heaven is like. Do you want to find out a few more of these? Be right back.
Sid Roth: Now, I've interviewed many people that have medically died, and gone to Heaven. But you have interviewed so many, that you have found certain commonalities.
John: For 35 years I've studied the Bible, and I've studied these experiences, and and I want to show that these are like dots of color on the bigger picture that the Bible's given us all along. And that's the picture we've got to hold to, because any one experience can be interpreted many different ways, and they are! But when you listen to what's reported, commonly, people will leave their body, they have a body, they still are fully themselves, more alive than they've ever felt, but they are able to observe, for a little bit, what's going on on the scene of their accident, or whatever it might have been, and then they're taken! They don't know if it's they some say through a tunnel, some say down a path. There are different ways of explaining it.
Sid Roth: Do they experience, when they're hovering, let's say, over their body, do they experience fear?
John: No. Not no! I mean, generally, it's a peace like you've never known before, but they come to a place, and different people see different parts. So it's kind of like if you landed a hundred people across you know, North Carolina, and then gave them 5 minutes there and said describe it. Well, they would all describe different bits, but you could start to piece it together, and that's what I try to do in the book, "Imagine Heaven", is piece together the picture of what they're saying.
Sid Roth: Right.
John: And what I've found fascinating is how many talked about people in these white robes, but what I discovered is they're not white robes like we're talking about, they're actually translucent. And the reason they're white is it lets, I believe, the Glory of God shine through! Maybe the amount of light and love of Jesus that we allow to shine through us now, expands our capacity to experience the life and love and light of God shining through us there!
Sid Roth: Now, why is it that just about everyone I've interviewed, that has had this type of experience, did not want to come back?
John: Well, because it's the life we were created for. This life is a temporary journey. We are finite, we are confined to time and space here! But Jesus said it, He said, "I am going to prepare a place for you, and I will come back and get you, and you will", "There are many dwelling places in My Father's Home," "and we will always be together"! And we will eat, and we will drink! There will be feasts! There will be – its life! It's not less life, it's more life than we've ever imagined!
Sid Roth: Aren't you a little worried when people read your book and find out how wonderful Heaven is, and how verified it is, they're going to want to cut out of this life?
John: I actually... No! I really actually am! And I would say that if you read and you have that thought, you've got to remember what God said to almost everyone: it's not your time, I still have plans have for you. And we should never short circuit God's plan.
Sid Roth: Tell me, what are our bodies like in Heaven? What if you go there with pain in your body? What if you go there with cancer in your body?
John: Consistently, um, you know several people I write about had loved ones. One, um, a guy named Gary had a friend who was decapitated in an auto accident, and he said one of the most wonderful things was as he's coming up to the entrance of the gate of the New Jerusalem, out comes his friend John, happy, whole, healthier than he's ever seen, gives him a big hug. And God appointed John to take him on a tour of the city. Our welcoming committee kind of introduces us!
Sid Roth: But what about the head?
John: Yeah, he had a head.
Sid Roth: He had a head? Okay.I was just checking, you know!
John: I thought that was implied in whole and healthy, but maybe not.
Sid Roth: How about families?
John: Yeah! I mean it is the greatest reunion we've ever had. And and you know they...
Sid Roth: They all get along?
John: Yeah. Well so, I write about that! I write about that. You know, one of the commonalities is our communication is perfect, meaning um, we speak to one another in complete thoughts, emotions, we understand each other perfectly!
Sid Roth: I'm told we don't actually speak words, it's like spirit to spirit.
John: Right, but we can speak words!
Sid Roth: Okay.
John: And in fact, we sing songs! One of the fascinating things about the music of Heaven, you know where Paul said things, "Eye hath not seen" we should talk about the colors of Heaven but, "ear has not heard" the music of Heaven. Like Betty Malz talked about how um, she heard all these songs, all in different languages, but she understood all of it. Don Piper, a pastor who's a friend of mine, said it was like listening to a thousand songs from Bach to Queen, all at the same time, and yet perfectly harmonized.
Sid Roth: Hmh.
John: It's music in a new dimension! So we're talking about life, and this is what you need to understand: There's adventure! There are mountains to climb! There's travel that's not limited! So Captain Dale Black, the airline pilot who died, I have a picture of the plane, in the L.A. Times. Everyone died in the crash, he resuscitated. But isn't it just like God. God has him flying into the New Jerusalem above, and he describes the beauty, very much like John did in Revelation 21. These grand mountains behind, but he noticed they were snowcapped, which is fascinating, I hadn't heard that.
Sid Roth: Hmh.
John: And the city wall that stretched side to side for he couldn't he couldn't see how far. And and the beautiful landscape of Paradise outside the wall, of the grass and the trees, and he heard waterfalls and fountains. And and this city with homes, with architecture that was he couldn't even describe it in words. There was something supernatural about the architecture, he even said. And so you hear what they have to say, and what I try to do is show how they show from different angles exactly what the Bible has been telling us all along! Colors. They commonly say colors, like you don't have here on Earth, so spectacular. That makes perfect sense! The color we see is from the spectrum of the light of the sun.
Sid Roth: Right.
John: The color there is the spectrum of the light of God! Far beyond anything we've ever seen!
Sid Roth: Yeah! You can't you can't not in the same ballpark!
Sid Roth: I'll tell you what, when we come back, there's just so many things to talk about, but the most fascinating thing that you talk about is he calls it a life review! Did you know every one of us is going to get a life review? Be right back.
Sid Roth: John, tell me just one life experience that had quite an impact on the person and on you.
John: One man I interviewed was an atheist college professor, um, who was taking a group of students on a tour of museums in Paris. His lower duodenum ruptured. Usually within 5 hours you die. There was no surgeon on call in the hospital. After 9 hours, he was in the most pain he's ever been in. He passed. But what he finds is, he's standing beside the bed. He thought when you die, it's like unplug the computer, lights out. But he found himself standing by the bedside, and felt more alive than he had ever felt before. He felt great! One minute he feels the worst he's ever felt, then he feels great! Now here's what's fascinating. You know, time and space and distance work different on the other side. So he's confused, he thinks he's still alive. And he's trying to get his wife's attention, but of course, he can't.
Sid Roth: Right.
John: Well, a group of people are standing in the hallway of the hospital. He can't quite see them, and they say, "Howard, come with us". And he and he thinks they're the hospital staff taking him to get surgery finally, and he follows them. And make a long story short, I write the full thing in "Imagine Heaven", but they lead him to an, outer darkness, just like what Jesus talked about.
Sid Roth: Mhm.
John: And he starts to realize, "They're deceiving me", and he tries to go back, and they turn, and they maul him. And he said he was laying there, and he doesn't know if it was an eternity, or how long, thinking about his life. And he had not been a good man. He had he had committed adultery on his wife, he had been self-centered, and all these things, and he realized, "I deserve this". And in that moment, a song came into his mind from when a neighbor had taken him to church, as a kid, "Jesus Loves Me", couldn't even remember the rest of the tune, and something inside of him just cried out, "Enough! Jesus, if You're real, save me"! And a pinpoint of light begins, and comes into this darkness. Ends up this brilliance brighter than the sun, hands reach out, pick him up and hold him, as he sobs like a baby, realizing, "This man I have cursed my whole life is real"! And there in the presence of Angels, gives Howard a life review.
Sid Roth: Hmh!
John: Well one more thing. Howard, after that life review, comes back, after 2 years leaves his tenured college professorship, becomes a pastor. His wife is still an atheist, she divorces him, but he's been pastor ever since. Truly I mean the Damascus road.
Sid Roth: You know, so he had this life review, we're going back to that. What is a life review?
John: Yeah, this is another commonality. That, in the presence of Jesus, He replays their lives for them. Now, what's interesting is um, it's like a panoramic revisiting your life, but from the perspective not only of yourself, but the people you interact with. And what's interesting, like Howard said to Jesus, "You're skipping the most important part of my life, you know, when I got this great award for artist of the year, and professor of the year", and Jesus said, "That's not what's important". He said, "I want to show you the students", and He showed him how he interacted with the students, and what was going on in his mind, and what was going on in the students' heart. And he shows us how our interactions – he shows us what Jesus said: Even when you give a little cup of cold water to a child, it matters! Every act of kindness ripples throughout humanity, but then our negative things ripple throughout humanity as well. And you know one of the things that confounds me, quite honestly, is that some come back, in the presence of this God of love they never want to leave, but they don't seek Him.
Sid Roth: That's hard to believe.
John: But others come back, and they seek Him, and they discover He's Jesus, and they give their hearts to Him. And in the latter chapters of "Imagine Heaven" I talk about rewards in Heaven, because I think I think it is so misunderstood. You know, even that life review, that is not judgment. It's just what Jesus said, that there is no motive or thought or deed that won't be laid bare. But it that's that should not scare us! He already sees everything. It's all laid bare right now! Well, it, we think we can hide from God, we can't hide from God, we're only hiding from ourselves. But here's the thing: "There is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus", and He wants us to know that now.
Sid Roth: You know what, you have said enough, that you should give your life to God, right now. That's what you should do. As of now, live for Heaven, and bring Heaven on Earth!