While un­com­mon, God can of­fer glimpses of heaven

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My un­cle says my aunt had a glimpse of Heaven just be­fore she died. How does he know? Maybe she was just hav­ing a hal­lu­ci­na­tion. I ad­mit I’m a bit skep­ti­cal, al­though my aunt was a very spir­i­tual per­son who read her Bi­ble every day.

Al­though it’s un­usual, God does give some peo­ple a glimpse of Heaven’s glory just be­fore they die. As the stones thrown by his en­e­mies rained down upon him, Stephen — the first Chris­tian mar­tyr — “looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Je­sus stand­ing at the right hand of God” (Acts 7:55).

Why does this hap­pen? It’s not a hal­lu­ci­na­tion or chem­i­cal re­ac­tion in the brain (as some sug­gest). I am con­vinced it is in­stead a God-given glimpse into eter­nity. Through it, God is re­mind­ing those who are present — and us as well — that eter­nity is real, and Christ is wait­ing to wel­come us into Heaven. He alone is our hope, be­cause by his death on the cross he paid the price for our sins, and by his res­ur­rec­tion from the dead he con­quered death and Hell and Satan. Is your faith and trust in him alone for your sal­va­tion?

At the same time, we must not be mis­led by sto­ries of vi­sions or “tun­nels of light” or other ex­pe­ri­ences that you may have heard about. Some­times Satan tries to im­i­tate God’s work, de­ceiv­ing peo­ple into think­ing they don’t need to com­mit their lives to Christ in or­der to be saved. Re­mem­ber: Satan “is a liar and the fa­ther of lies” (John 8:44).

Be thank­ful for your aunt’s faith in Christ — a faith that strength­ened her every day, and as­sured her of her life be­yond the grave. May Christ be­come the foun­da­tion of your life as well — be­gin­ning to­day.

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