Evangelist Billy Graham pushed back against assumptions that peoples’ claims of having “glimpses of heaven” before they die are actually just a “hallucination or chemical reaction in the brain,” saying, instead, that he believes they are divine in nature.
Graham’s comments about these “heaven” experiences came after he received a question from a woman who said that her uncle believes that her aunt had one such vision before her death.
The woman expressed skepticism and asked whether her aunt was merely suffering from a hallucination.
“Although it’s unusual, God does give some people a glimpse of Heaven’s glory just before they die,” Graham responded in a post on The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association website. “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).”
Graham went on to say that he doesn’t buy critics’ claims that it’s all just a chemical reaction and said that he believes it is actually a “God-given glimpse into eternity” — something that God uses to show people that eternity is real and that Jesus is waiting for us.
But Graham also issued a warning to be careful about what types of stories people believe.
“We must not be misled by stories of visions or ‘tunnels of light’ or other experiences that you may have heard about,” he said. “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).”