Who is the being of light encountered in near-death experiences?

Photo copyrighted by Films for Christ. Photographer: Paul S. Taylor.

One of the most common characteristics of the so-called near-death experience is encountering a being of light. This being is said to emanate love and warmth.

It has been claimed by numerous (not all) individuals who have had alleged near-death experiences that the being of light they encountered was none other than Jesus Christ. As appealing as the idea may initially sound, this identification seems to be flawed in view of the fact that the so-called being of light typically says and does things contrary to the Christ of the Bible. Since Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8), it would be impossible that these are one and the same Jesus. I believe that many of the individuals who go through near-death experiences actually encounter a counterfeit Christ.

The “Jesus” (being of light) typically encountered in near-death experiences teaches such things as:

In view of the fact that these ideas clearly go against what the biblical Jesus taught, I think we have good reason to conclude that this “Jesus” is in fact a lying spirit.

“You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” —John 8:44 NKJV

We must remember that Satan has the ability to appear as an “angel of light” and as a “servant of righteousness.”

And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.
2 Corinthians 11:14-15 (NKJV)

His goal, of course, is to lead people astray. He is happy to mimic a being of light if the end result is that he can lead people away from the true Christ of Scripture.

Consistent with the above is the fact that many who have had near-death experiences come out of the experience with a lower view of Scripture. One person concluded that "the Lord isn't interested in theology," and another said that God "didn't care about church doctrine at all." The true Christ of Scripture, however, is most certainly interested in correct doctrine.

Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” —John 8:31-32 NKJV

Now, other individuals—particularly individuals affiliated with non-Christian religions—claim that the being of light was Buddha, or Krishna, or some other leader of a particular world religion. Certainly this should raise “red flags” in the minds of Christians. Satan, the great counterfeiter, is seeking to keep people of ALL religions away from the true Christ of the Bible.

For more information on the near-death-experience, see Dr. Ron Rhodes book, Heaven: The Undiscovered Country.

Author: Dr. Ron Rhodes of Reasoning from the Scriptures Ministries.