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Saturday, March 16, 2013

IN MY FATHER'S HOUSE



IN MY FATHER’S HOUSE
March 16, 2013 
By Pastor Mark Taylor

This is more of a report than a typical sermon because it deals with experiences and writings of others. My objective is to help us focus on the reality of Heaven.The experiences quoted and edited may not completely agree with my personal doctrinal views or yours, but it is presented from the writings of those who experienced God and Heaven in a unique way.

Sometimes our doctrinal views put God in a box and we think he has to operate the way that we think.  He can speak to a small child just like he did Samuel,  Or He can speak to a religious person like Ananias in the Book of Acts.  In the Old Testament Daniel and Isaiah had visions of heaven.  In the New Testament God spoke to Paul, Peter, and John through visions about heaven.  Through visions and inspiration from the Holy Spirit,  King David  saw the death burial and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ and wrote the prophecy of it in the book of Psalms.


"Now I John saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain for the former things are passed away."  (Revelation 21: 1-4)

Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is God's Son, who had been in Heaven and came to Earth to give us a testimony and documentation that their was life after death. He came from His Father's House to share this wonderful opportunity for us to join Him in Heaven.   Some have said if I could prove that their was a  “Heaven”, then I would believe the Bible and commit myself to a relationship with God.  But Jesus said: “If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rose from the dead” (Luke 16: 31). 

But some have heard and believed and look forward to Heaven without fear.  Our Lord told His disciples and tells us today:  “Let not your heart be troubled: you believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many mansions...I go to prepare a place for you...I will come again and receive you unto Myself; that where I am there you will be also.”  (John 14:1-3).

I have personally met some people who were clinically dead but came back from the dead and told me and others about visiting with the Lord Jesus Christ. Many people have shared with me accounts of loved ones returning to bring a message from Heaven to their loved ones to assure them that they are ok.   But in this short time we have together I would like to relate to your the stories of others who have documented their visits to Heaven and later you can read their books.  If you are a child of God and have accepted the Lord Jesus as your Savior, then the Holy Spirit will testify to your Spirit that the stories below are true and actual experiences.

We have to accept in humbleness that there are millions of things we don't understand.  Many people have had an out-of-body experience during surgery, and in fact are,watching the surgeons at work.  My daughter in law had that experience when my grandson was born on August 15, 2011.  She reported to me that she was floating above her bed and watched the birth and delivery.  She heard every thing the doctors said including that she had coded and she watched several other medical personal enter the room to bring her back to life.  At this time I was in the hospital chapel praying for her and my grandson's safety.  I have been in the room of my mother-in-law when the doctor’s said she would be dead in five minutes.  In less than five minutes she returned to perfect health, was sitting up in her bed, and related to the family an experience she had talking personally with the Lord Jesus in her hospital room.  She amazed the doctors and hospital staff with her testimony of a “near death experience” in which God totally healed her from acute leukemia in an instant of time. The greatest witness in that room was the Holy Spirit’s presence. So I know there is a life after death, a Heaven, and a real God from personal observation.

“Jesus said:  I am the resurrection and the life, he that believes in Me, though he were physically dead, yet shall he live.  And whosoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.”  

There are more cases of “NDE” (Near life Experiences) than the average person may be aware of.  Dr. Elizabeth Ross was awarded 10 Doctor degrees including M.D.'s and PhD's for her 20 years of work with "NDE's".  She wrote a book titled Life After Death Elizabeth devoted her life to proving that an after life did exist. Her work showed that death was really a beautiful experience and the beginning of another life.

She showed that this after life was full,of promise and love and meeting those we loved who had died before us.  She studied 20,000 cases of people all over the world who had been declared near dead and had returned to life.  She inspired the start of the Hospice movement.  She reported on some people who awoke naturally in "NDE's", and others who had been brought back to life through medical help. 

Dr. Elizabeth Ross states in her book Life After Dearth that “The dying experience is almost identical to the experience at birth.  It is a birth into another experience that can be proved.  "The death of the human body is identical to what happens when the butterfly emerges from its cocoon.  The cocoon can be compared to the human body, but it is not identical with your real self, for it is only a house to live in for awhile. Dying is only moving from one beautiful house into another beautiful house.  As soon as the cocoon is in an irreparable condition - be it from suicide, murder, heart attack, chronic illness, it doesn't matter how it happens, it will release the butterfly, your soul to speak.  You will experience some important things which you ought to know in order not to be afraid of death anymore."

"As soon as your soul leaves your body, you will immediately perceive everything happening at the place of death. Be it at the seen of an accident or in a hospital room, or where ever you left your body.  You do register this with your earthly consciousness, but with a new awareness.  You realize exactly what everyone says, what they think, and how they act.  It has even occurred that people remember the exact license number of the car that hit them and drove off.”

“At the moment of this transition you are never ever alone.  You are not alone now, but you don't know it.  At the moment of your transition, your guardian angels, your loved ones who have passed on before you will be there to guide you.  "We have verified this beyond a shadow of a doubt, and I say this as a scientist.  There will always be someone to help you with this transition.  Most of the time it is a parent or a grandparent, or a child if you have lost a child.  Sometimes it is people you did not know we're on the "other side" already.  This means that many children who do not have anyone they know on the "other side", see Jesus.”

“So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.” 
(I Corinthians 15: 54)

Dr. Ross also observed and reported that patients have reported to her "After you have perceived your body is whole again and you have seen your loved ones, you will realize that dying is only a transition to a different form of life. But before you step out of your physical form in exchange for those forms which you will keep for eternity, it could be you will float through a tunnel, pass through a gate, or cross a bridge."

"After you have passed through this tunnel or gate, or crossed a bridge, you are at its end embraced by light.  This light is whiter than white.  It is extremely bright, and the closer you approach this light you are embraced by the greatest, indescribable, unconditional, love you could imagine.  There are no words for it.  After seeing the light no one wants to go back.  In this light you will experience for the first time what man could have been."

"In this light, is the presence of Christ and God, you are now in the possession of knowledge.  You know in detail every thought you had at every time during your life on earth. ( the Bible says that man will give account of every word he said).  You will know all the consequences from the results of your thoughts, words, and deeds.

Other observations that Dr. Ross received from those who had “Near Death Experiences” (NDE’s) was “The time you spend in your physical body is a very, very short time of your total existence.  It is  a very important time because you are here for a very special purpose, which is yours and yours alone.  The question of time is not terribly important; it is a man made artificial concept anyway.  Death is like putting away your winter coat when spring comes.  You know the coat is shabby and you don't want to wear it any more.” 

“Not one of my patients who had an out-of-body experience was afraid of dying.  Many of our patients beside feeling a sense of peace, also feel a sense of wholeness. That means someone who had a leg amputated has both legs.  Those that lose their sight can see again. Blind people who have had an out-of-body experience can tell you in detail what jewelry and the colors you were wearing if you were present.  Further more they can tell you the pattern of your sweater and the color of tie you were wearing.”

“How are the dead raised?”  “God gives it a body.” (I Corinthians 15:38)   Paul explains it: “Behold, I show you a mystery....we shall all be changed.” (I Corinthians 15:51).  Look at a little seed that we put into the ground, or take a look at a dry looking bulb that some put into the ground.  They look withered and dead, but in the spring we see the flowers and the fruit of the new life.  We shall be changed into the new order of life: our personalities continuing in those bodies that God will prepare for us, which are supernatural.

“Eye has not seen, neither has ear heard, or has it entered into the heart of mankind, the things which God has prepared for those that love Him.  But God has revealed them unto us by His Spirit: for the Spirit knows all things, yes, the deep things of God” (I Corinthians 2: 9-10).


There are many books and testimonies of those who have had experiences in visions and near death experiences.  I would like to relate just three more to fix in your mind the realness of Heaven.

Dr. Eben Alexander M.D, an academic neurosurgeon for the last 25 years did not believe in “NDE’s” until his own brain was attacked by a rare illness.  The part of the brain that controls thought and emotion.  He was in a coma for seven days.  Then as his doctors considered stopping treatment, his eyes open and he came back to life.  He wrote about his time in Heaven in a book titled PROOF OF HEAVEN.    He said when he initially entered Heaven he both felt and heard three messages:  “You are loved and cherished”,  “You have nothing to fear”, and “There is nothing you can do wrong here.”  He said: “The unconditional love and acceptance that I experienced on my journey is the single most important discovery I have ever made.”  It is no wonder those who have had “NDE’s do not want to return to Earth, but are sent back as an answer to other’s prayers.

Colton Burpo had an emergency appendectomy when he was four years old.  He told his family a beautiful story of his trip to Heaven and back.  His parents retold his story in  a book about his experiences titled HEAVEN IS FOR REAL.  Colton told of meeting people in Heaven like a sister he never met or knew of that had died when his mother had a miscarriage years before his birth.  He also met his grandfather in Heaven, he had not known before this vision.  He described Jesus and the angels, and how “really, really big” God is and how much God love us.

Akiiane Kramariks was a young girl brought up in a family in Lithuania. The parents “never talked about religion, never prayed together, and never went to any church.”  The family was atheist.  The children “did not watch TV, had never been out of her parents sight, and were home schooled.

When she was four, she began sharing her visions of heaven with her parents.  She said:  “Today I met God.”  Her mother said “What is God?”.  Akiane said “God is light - warm and good.  He knows everything and talks with me.  He is my parent.”  Her mother said:  Tell me more about your dream.”  She said “It was not a dream, It was real.”

“I eat there, but I don’t go to the bathroom.  The plants there move and sing when I move an talk.  It seems as if they can think.. Animals there are not like here.  They listen to me, and they’re not afraid of me, so I can pet them whenever I want....I am good there and I listen there.  Everyone there listens - God is there.” Heavenly music is always gentle..  It feels like joy, looks like love, smells like flowers, and dances like butterflies.  Music there is alive!  You can even taste it.” 

“They shall see His Face, and His Name shall be on their foreheads.  There shall be no night there.  They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light.  And they shall reign with HIm forever and ever.” 
 Revelation 22:4-5 

The evidence of Akiiane Kramarik’s vision has been seen on many national TV news and entertainment programs.  She had never had a drawing or painting lesson but at the age of 8 1/2 she desperately wanted to paint  portraits of Jesus who she had seen in another vision of Heaven.   Her painting was called “The Prince of Peace.”  Then another painting called “Father Forgive Them”. She said this was a gift given to her while she was in Heaven.  Many of her paintings, drawings and poems are in a book titled AKIANE .

Akiane  said “I have been blessed by a gift from God, a gift I will use to help others.”  Below is some of her work.  This gift was given to her after her vision and visit to Heaven at the age of 4.  About the same time as the visions began, Akiane suddenly began showing an intense interest in drawing.  At the age of six she was writing advanced poetry of six stanzas or more.

      
     




A Painting by Akiane at the Age of 8
"The Prince of Peace"


    A Painting by Akiane at the Age of 9
                            "Father Forgive Them"

                   
Someone asked her “What church do you belong to? What  denomination?  “I belong to God,” Akiane responded.  Who taught you how to paint?  “I’m self-taught.  In other words, God is my teacher.”  “I want my art to draw people’s attention to God, and I want my poetry to keep their attention on God.”

God brought this child to Him without any knowledge of His existence or love to Him and gave her this wonderful gift.  He also has many things for those of us that love Him and are serving Him.

Heaven is a real place.  It is a wonderful place.  It is a prepared place.  God has revealed Himself to you through His Word.  He does not want you to miss this place. If you receive The Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior you will go to His Father's house. Ask The Lord Jesus to forgive you of your sins and to make you one of His children. Don't miss this place called Heaven.   Jesus asked: "For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Matthew 16:26).

(For more video and written sermons by Pastor Mark Taylor go to:

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