End-of-life experiences

I just read the question and answer about ghosts. I came to same conclusion that paranormal experiences are the Devil and his demons doing his work. Now, many years later I am an experienced hospice social worker. I have heard and seen experiences that my patients are having when they are getting closer to dying. They often talk about or even talk to the unseen. Often times, they are even able to clearly identify them as a familiar, deceased loved one, often their mother. So, if we are supposed to believe that any paranormal activity is from the Devil, why are my patients having good experiences of seeing their loved ones before they die? When other family members see this, this usually only strengthens their faith and gives them comfort as they believe it is a deceased family member seemingly getting ready to welcome a person to heaven as their life on earth comes to a close. Why would the Devil allow such paranormal activities to happen if faith in the Lord is only strengthened?

Your question shifts the focus of attention from ghosts (which a previous answer addressed) to end-of-life experiences. What might explain such experiences? It is possible that people “see” what they desire to see. In other instances, medications can affect the mind. We cannot rule out that Satan, who “masquerades as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14), can seek to deceive people even at the end of life. Supporting that thought is the fact that there are accounts of non-Christians reporting experiences of “heavenly welcomes” in their last moments of earthly life.

Through the work of the Holy Spirit, a Christian like Stephen did see a glorious vision of heaven before he was stoned to death (Acts 7:54-56).  God can certainly do the same thing today if he wants to, but we have no promise from God that Christians will have heavenly visions before death.

What we do have is God’s sure promise that those who believe in Jesus Christ as their Savior “will live, even though they die” (John 11:25). We do well to compare the experiences people report at death’s threshold with the word of God.