Why I Believe in Life After Death
by Norman Vincent Peel & Christopher C. Warren
One day, when I was on a visit to London, the great newspaperman, Lord Thomson, of Fleet Street invited me to a luncheon at The Times with distinguished editors and writers as well as prominent businessmen.
In the sumptuous dining-room, the conversation ranged over many themes: world affairs, politics British and American, the prospects for greater prosperity. Suddenly, in the midst of much good- natured banter, Thomson said: "Dr. Peale, I am an old man, and one of these days I am going to die." The room became silent. "I want to know: is there an afterlife?"
I couldn't be sure he wasn't pulling my leg, but then I sensed that the question was indeed serious and weighed on his mind. "Lord Thomson," I said, "I believe in the promises of the Bible. But beyond the biblical is the evidence of intelligence and common sense."
Then I told him and the others a parable about a prenatal baby tucked beneath its mother's loving heart. "Suppose," I said, "someone came to this unborn baby and said, 'You cannot stay here long. In a few months you will be born, or, as you may think of it, die out of your present state.'
"The baby might stubbornly say, 'I don't want to leave here. I'm warm, loved and happy. I don't want to be what you call born, or what I call die, out of this place.'
"But he is born. He does die out of his present life. He feels beneath him strong, loving arms. He looks up into a beautiful face, tender with love, the face of his mother. He is welcomed, cared for, and says, 'How foolish I was. This is a wonderful place to which I have come.'
"Then he goes on to enjoy the delights of childhood. He grows into youth with its excitement and romance. he marries, and knows the love of his children.
"The years pass by, with the strength of manhood, the achievement of middle age; the joy and wonder of life are his. Then he becomes an old man. Someone says, 'You are going to die, or, as we call it, be born out of this place into another.'
"And he might remonstrate: 'But I don't want to die. I have my loved ones. I love this world - the dawn and the sunset, the moon, the starlight. I like to feel the warmth of the fire on my face when the cold weather comes, and to hear the crunch of snow beneath my feet on a winter's evening. I don't want to leave this world. I don't want to die.'
"But in the natural course he does die. What happens then? Is God, the Creator, suddenly going to change His nature? Can we not assume that he will once again feel loving arms beneath him, and once again look up into a strong, beautiful face, more lovely than that first face he saw so long ago?
"Won't he soon be exclaiming, 'Why, this is wonderful! Here I want to remain for ever'?
"Does this not make sense?" I concluded. A deep silence hung over the table; several of the company appeared to be moved.
Thomson sighed: "It does indeed make sense," he said. "It has helped me answer a question that has haunted me for years." Suddenly his mood changed. "Do you think I will like it over there?"
"Of course, for it will be exciting."
"What will I do there?" he asked with a grin.
"Perhaps buy and sell newspapers!" A laugh went around the luncheon table.
Since then, Lord Thomson has gone into the life beyond. And, judging by the affirmative way he responded to the power of faith, I think God must be taking good care of him.
(Condensed from The Positive Power of Jesus Christ by Norman Vincent Peale).
The question, "Is there life after death?" is asked by everyone at some time or another in their life. For most it is a question that is postponed to old age as the certainty of death looms ahead. Only a small proportion of the more thoughtful segment of society bother to ask themselves this vital question while they are young and in the prime of health.
Often the death of a loved one causes us to reflect more seriously on life's purpose and what may (or may not) exist on the other side of mortality's veil. Or it may be that we have ourselves come close to death and this has prompted us to seriously consider the meaning of life.
That category of persons which does ask itself such questions usually does so in one of several ways. And these questions usually change their whole attitude to life.
Some seek to escape life altogether and pursue a morbid and negative course of trying to contact the spirits of the dead through spiritualism and various forms of occultism. Such activity rarely brings them happiness and invariably does them considerable harm.
Others, believing in the message of Christianity, take the promises of Yah'shua (Jesus) at face value, and, instead of escaping from life's challenges, engage in it with ever greater fervour than before. For now they have a sure faith of what awaits them after death.
Occasionally such faith is rewarded by evidences of life after death, of visions of the worlds beyond, of personal visits of departed loved ones, and of angels. But for the most part, the vast majority must content themselves with an inner "knowing" that comes from a consistent and joyful walk with He who conquered death, Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ), who furthermore assures us, by the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit), that the promises made in the Bible are authentic and trustworthy.
Believers in Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) have the assurance of life after death, and often their faith is rewarded by confirming evidences. We take a zealous interest in life, living it out to the fullest here on earth, as Yah'shua (Jesus) taught us to do. For we realise that there is a purpose for our being here and that we do not have much time to accomplish the lofty goals which our Heavenly Father, Yahweh, has entrusted to us. It is therefore important to make the best use of the time which has been allotted to us.
Whilst we are in no hurry to depart from this mortal sphere, in spite of what we know awaits us on the other side, many of us have seen the words beyond in vision and have had our faith confirmed. These multiple witnesses persuade us to live our lives here even more fully to the glory of God and in service to mankind.
If this is your view also, we would like to meet you and share our experiences and testimony of Yahweh's Word with you.
If, on the other hand, you are not sure about this vital question, and would like to hear more of what we have experienced and what Yahweh has revealed to His prophets and apostles from earlier times, we would be glad to talk with you.
If you have become involved with spiritualism or any other occult art, we can reveal to you a better way, and show you how to be liberated from the controlling forces that manipulate those who dabble in such things.
We should no more be afraid to talk about death than we should about birth and life, for the two are inextricably connected. It should certainly never be tabboo.
We bear our collective and individual witness that there is life after death, that life is not a question of chance, or karma, but is purposeful. There is only one earth life, not many, and time is shorter than you think in which to accomplish your purpose down here. Complex though life often is, meaning may be found in it once we have come to a right perspective and know the liberating power of Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ). Once we have this right view, and have experienced the delivery of sin from our lives through the atoning blood of Christ, we may begin to live life to the full no matter what our circumstances, be they outwardly good or evil.
To have a sense of purpose, to have the assurance of deliverance from the judgement of Yahweh through faith in Christ and obedience to His Torah (Law), and to be living one's life in His will, is to be truly free.
From a pamphlet originally published in 1989
This page was created on 21 August 2009
Last updated on 21 August 2009
Copyright © 1989-2009 Norman Vincent Peel (Part A) & NCCG (Part B)