A WAKE-UP CALL TO THE CHURCH
by Bob Taylor
The following is a series of visions seen by a friend after two experiences of clinical death. They are a challenge to the Body of Christ to wake up and move forward in the Lord.—Bob Thompson
Dear Family and Friends,
But let all who take refuge in You be glad, Let them ever sing for joy; And may You shelter them, That those who love Your name may exult in You. For it is You who blesses the righteous man, O LORD, You surround him with favor as with a shield.
Praise the Lord! His mercy endures forever!
In retrospect it is a miracle I did not die before going on vacation. It is a miracle I didn’t die before going to the beach. It is a miracle I didn’t die on the beach. It is a miracle I didn’t die as a “Code Blue in Room 2.” It’s a miracle my mind is whole and all but my right eye (smashed by my fall on the beach) is totally functional. It is a further miracle that my right eye retina continues to receive nourishment and is healing to a point that allows me to see my hand and fingers with no missing pieces in the field of vision!
While my body was going through its physical life or death struggle, I found myself being “caught up” into what I believe to be the spiritual realm. The thrust of what I was shown had much to do with insights into the “Kingdom of God” and, in particular the “Mystery of Christ” and how the Church needs to understand who she is and what is at stake.
What I am about to share below is intended to encourage and edify you. But, in my understanding, can only be life when God reveals His truth in what is being shared. Any part that is of “Bob Taylor” needs to be put in its proper perspective. In that context I would like to share one thing that was shown to me concerning the prayers that were being lifted up on behalf of myself and my family.
A voice said to me “Come, I want to show you something.” And immediately I found myself elevated above the earth looking down and recognizing the outline of the United States. The surface of the country wasn’t a topological representation, but rather layers of different length “tabs” that laid flat on the surface. I then saw some tabs in the West Coast beginning to pivot up from one of its ends to the point that the opposite end of the tab was sticking up and away from the surface. I knew the tabs that were lifting up represented prayer going up on our behalf. Then I saw that the other tabs were lifting up in such a way as to form an orchestrated wave of prayer that rippled back and forth across our nation. The wave reminded me somewhat of what one might see at a baseball game, but is much more profound and “choreographed.” It was the most beautiful and orchestrated wave originating and returning back to various regions where the Father was waiting for the requests from the saints and answering them.
As I was watching this happening, I came to realize how profound prayer is and is going to be as the body of Christ matures and is orchestrated by the Holy Spirit.
Your prayers have and are a blessing to myself and my family. I pray God’s blessing on you and your family as we all press onward that we might know Him and the power of His resurrection.
Yours in Christ, Bob
During our family’s seashore vacation at Bethany, Delaware, I died once on the beach and again at the Beebe Medical Center trauma center. During this time I was “caught up” and experienced a number of separate and concise events. Below you will find a description of what I remember in one of these events including additional revelation I received later and believe it is from the Lord.
Personally, I am very cautious about any emotion or personal biases that can distort the true message of an experience such as the ones I have had. I believe there are “Divine nuggets” of truth in what I witnessed, but these true nuggets must be spiritually discerned by each one of us through availing ourselves to His revelation concerning what is of Him and what is not (Matt 16: 13-18).
How did I die? Attached is an appendix which briefly describes the miracle upon miracle that I believe God orchestrated while, in His economy, achieving other objectives at the same time.
I do not have words that adequately describe the difference I perceived between being “caught up” and dreaming. I am convinced by what I believe I sensed in the spirit and what I believe was revealed to me during and after this event, that this was no dream. I choose to describe my experience as a micro event perhaps similar to John’s experience in Revelation or as described by Paul in 2Cor 12:2 where he says: “I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago—whether in the body I do not know, or out of the body I do not know, God knows—such a man was caught up to the third heaven.
The corridor experience started just like the other ones. There appears to be no “travel time” to and from the event, but rather you find yourself “there” and when you are finished you are instantly removed and off to something else. People have asked me if I saw a bright light at the end of a tunnel—I did not.
In the corridor, the first thing I became aware of was I felt tired to the point of exhaustion. I then realized I had just gone through death and was now on the other side of death walking down this corridor. I was not “walking” quickly but was aware that I was walking further away from my actual death event and presumably toward what typically follows physical death.
I knew I died, but, during this time I had no idea how or why. As I walked I looked down at my body and realized I could not see or determine if I had a physical body at this time. But I felt I was walking as though I did have a body. My perception of the corridor is as follows:
- The width and height of the corridor is perhaps ten feet wide and eight feet high.
- The construction of the corridor reminded me of translucent plastic where the entire structure is uniformly illuminated with a soft white light from behind the corridor walls, ceiling, and floor.
- The corridor has no visible side corridors connecting to it or any other exits. The corridor only permits either going forward (away from my physical death event) or back (toward my physical death event).
- At the point in the corridor where I was “walking,” there is a gentle curve behind me and another one in front of me to the point where I can only see perhaps 10 to 20 feet in either direction.
I felt that I was totally alone. I also felt physically and emotionally drained. I was aware that I was slowly moving away from the event of my death and toward my “rest.” Rest was very attractive and desirable to me at this point in my walk.
I then heard a voice just slightly behind me and to my left. I looked toward the source of the sound and discovered I was unable to see the source of this voice. The voice seemed to contain everything you ever wanted to hear from someone. It came across as compassionate, knowing, encouraging, soothing, intellectual, analytical, logical, and more.
I stopped walking when I heard this voice first say “Congratulations”. (In this first word, the voice carried with it the connotation of “Well done!”) Immediately following “Congratulations” was “You made it through.” I instinctively knew he was talking about my physical death. I had made it! Although I did not know how I died, I was relieved that it was over. What a beautiful and assuring voice.
Next the voice was said “You know, if you were to go back you will be a vegetable and blind. All you need to do is keep walking and you not only will have made it, but you will be able to rest.” Go back? What’s this about going back? I thought I had already died. I confess there was a strong attraction to continuing toward my “rest.” I was tired and, quite frankly, I really do not care to go through death again, let alone live out the rest of my life blind and as a brain dead vegetable.
I didn’t know there was any “going back” let alone what my condition might be. My response was “But God isn’t finished with me.” I was convinced and am even more convinced now that I have not finished the race that has been placed before me. Even if I am a vegetable and blind (Not a desirable “Quality of Life.”), I knew I needed to avail myself of the opportunity to finish the race that God has ordained for me. During all of this, I felt I was all alone with this voice.
I then realized this voice WAS NOT MY FRIEND. IT WAS MY ENEMY! And here I thought once you died, you were safe! The voice then said again “All you have to do is keep walking and everything will be all right. Peace and joy await you.” Even though it sounded so good, I responded again that God was not finished with me yet.
Immediately after saying this the corridor and the voice were gone and I found myself off to something else. In retrospect I am coming to understand this is when I returned to my body during my “Code Blue” condition in the hospital. In retrospect and what I believe is revelation I received from the Lord, I offer the following:
- The voice was the enemy (2 Cor 11:14,15).
- The battle, at least for me, is not over when you physically die.
- The enemy may know things that you are not yet aware of. In my case I believe the enemy knew about my blood clot situation and that I was in jeopardy of massive clot migration to my brain.
- The enemy must have known about the bruise in my right eye and behind my right eye and the hemorrhaging that was to manifest itself later. The enemy lies.
- Even after my death, I could elect not finish the race that God has set before me (1 Cor 9:23-27).
- Somewhere in all of this, it was made known to me that the Father had been waiting for our daughter, Joanne, to cry out to Him that he protect her dad’s “wonderful mind.” It was made known to me that He heard her cry and He answered her prayer. Realize, at this point I didn’t know anything about what was going on with me.
- I have come to understand “The Corridor” experience was similar to Jesus being tempted in the wilderness by Satan (Matt 4:1). During this revelation I mentioned back to the Lord “But I was all alone.” His response was to the effect that “You were not alone. You are my son and My nature is in you.” Wow! Christ in you, the hope of glory! (Col 1:27)
- Needless to say, I am back in my body and running the race that has been set before me continues (1Cor 9:23-27)! Glory to God!
Over a year before this I noticed my legs did not work (numbing and fatigue) the way they used to. I then noticed that my legs were beginning to swell. I am a procrastinator, but I finally went to the doctor (two weeks before the vacation) where I was diagnosed with a condition known as “Chronic Venous Insufficiency” (CVI) in both legs. CVI is caused by damaged valves in the veins where the returning blood from the leg is not effectively returned to the torso. The net result is blood pooling in the leg and, therefore, causing swelling and discomfort. The treatment was for me to elevate my legs so the pooled blood would drain back to my torso and wearing knee-high gradient compression stockings.
Recently I learned that the above treatment should NOT be prescribed unless sonogram testing indicates the absence of blood clots. This test was not performed and in less than two weeks and elevating my legs and wearing the compression stockings, my swelling was significantly reduced. What I didn’t know was I had a substantial number of blood clots in my legs and now had a potential time bomb of these clots moving up to my heart, lungs, and my brain. After flying from Texas to Maryland, driving about three hours in a car, and then sitting on a beach chair with my legs straight out massive blood clots (CAT scan indicated the clots were the size of silver dollars) moved out of the legs totally blocking my lungs and heart. The doctors called it “multiple, massive pulmonary embolisms.” We found out later that my condition was so critical that my odds of surviving the first night was one out of one hundred thousand.
The Ticker Tape
Hospitals are most interesting places. One universal complaint I am aware of is the fact that your sleep is always being interrupted one way or the other. During my recovery when someone was waking me, it was most difficult for me to wake up. I had to struggle to figure out who I was, where I was and what was going on around me. One night, at about 3:AM, I was awakened by what I thought was a nurse. Struggling to wake up and managing to open my eyes and see who was there, I discovered there was no one. I was still working at waking up more fully when all of a sudden—Wham.
In what felt like a fraction of a second, I saw the 23rd Psalm stream before my eyes in the form of a ticker tape where the words go by serially. There were places where the ticker tape slowed down. Two of the places were “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want” and “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all of the days of my life and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
As I was wondering what the purpose of this ticker tape was, I felt impressed to “visit” the first place the ticker tape ran slower than other sections. In my mind I saw the ticker tape stopped at “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” And then immediately this section of the ticker tape folded back and away from me leaving an opening where these words were printed on the tape. Then a voice asked me “How deep do you wish to go?”
Upon hearing this, I confess I hesitated in my response. I instantly knew the “full depth” meant having the mind of Christ in its entirety (1Cor 2:15-16). I was about to answer “As much as this vessel is presently able to handle when I became aware that I was being encouraged to consider that I am solely the one who is holding up knowing Him as he desires me to know Him. Part of knowing Him is to have His mind in every aspect of our lives. I believe, at this point, I heard “Iron against iron.” and “You (I am not sure if this is singular or plural.) will silence the enemy.” Without my responding, He selected what He wanted to show me at that time. Basically He said. “If I am not your shepherd, the promises in this Psalm are not yours.” I also came to realize Psalm 23 is talking about “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
From there, I was taken to “surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all of the days of my life and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” Once again the ticker tape with this writing appeared and then folded back and away as it had in the other section. I am not sure whose humor this was but I was asked what the three subjects were. I responded that there were only two subjects where “surely” was not one of them. Surely, as I understand means “a certain outcome, something that is certain to happen.” So from this I say goodness and mercy is a certain outcome of the Lord being my shepherd. But now comes the revelation. I always thought that this was a blessing that came to me. What I believe I was shown is out of the Christ in us comes goodness and mercy to others! I/We have it backwards.
Additional insights include:
- Pro 21:21 He that followeth after righteousness and mercy findeth life, righteousness, and honour.
- A shepherd leads the flock into certain events and places where the outcome opportunity offers life and maturity.
- In John 3:16, God so loved (agape) the world. When Jesus asked Peter if he loved (agape) Him in the context of shepherding His flock, Peter was only able to answer back that he had tender affection (phileo). Later, we see in Peter’s writings that the Christ in him enabled agape love.
- There is a parallel between the silver smiths in the first century and “Christian Merchandising” of materials/programs which are not God breathed. Shepherds are not silver smiths, but rather keep watch over the flock including real edification of the Church in order that true discernment with ears that hear and eyes that see is the normal Christian walk.
- The parable of the prodigal son and the workers in the field reflects the expectation of mercy being extended in the Kingdom of God.
The vision starts with my having the understanding that I died and finding myself in total darkness. It is not the type of darkness one would think of in the natural, but rather one of a darkness that cannot be discerned by any of the senses. I could not see, hear, feel, smell, taste, or sense where I was or what was around me. I was comfortable and at peace. I felt time was passing, but of no importance or concern to me.
While in this state, I saw a light that began to illumine a little part of what was around me. I could not see from where the light was shining. I could only see what it illuminated. At first the light was not bright, but it was a white light with a tinge of blue. As this light illuminated a larger area I could see that I was in a valley of fields and trees. It was most beautiful and peaceful. There was more than one light shining on the valley.
One of the lights focused on some tall grass in the field. My attention was pulled to this one light and what it was shining on because the light became brighter. As the light became brighter I noticed its intensity penetrated through the surface of the grass and I could see below the surface as in a three dimensional object. The light continued to get brighter, and as it did, I could see deeper and deeper into the blade until the whole three dimensional depth was able to be viewed. As I watched the intensity of the light increase, I became aware that this light had the ability to produce an intensity capable of penetrating anything it shined on. I saw another light shine on a tree limb with the same results. Then a light shone on my arm (This may mean I had a body?) and then as the intensity of the light grew, I could see down into my arm and discern everything that was below the surface. Once again, I was in awe as to the energy available from the light source.
As the lights illuminated various aspects of my surroundings, I came to understand I was in a very large countryside setting. With the countryside rather dimly illuminated, additional lights now illuminated other people who apparently had been there all along. As individual lights illuminated the numerous people, I noticed all I was able to see were their faces. These faces had the appearance of having only one dimension (flat). The light was bright enough on these faces to see that each face was full of joyful and excited expectation. As the lights got brighter, I saw a change in their demeanor. They were losing their excitement and their joy was not as intense. As the light grew more intense, the joy and expectation appearance changed to one of confusion and surprise. Then, I sensed the light was intense enough that it was definitely penetrating the surface of these faces and as the intensity of the light increased even more, these faces once again changed to ones realizing they were in danger. Then the light got even more intense and the faces were, showing what I perceived to be horror. Even again the light intensity increased even more and the faces now had what I perceived as pure stark horror on them.
I am not sure how or what actually happened next, except my perception is the faces fled out of the countryside. I did not see any faces that did not have this horror look on them and afterwards I did not see any faces remaining in the countryside. At this point the vision was over and I was off to other things.
Also, I am almost certain I was shown this vision twice. It was the same both times. It has been suggested it was repeated because of its importance. I know I have a renewed burden and urgency for the Church to “Wake Up” and to “Grow Up” while there remains time.
The following are my thoughts as to “The Light” vision message:
- This message is for the Church
- The Church needs to understand who she is and what is at stake
- The Church needs to understand the promises are for those who overcome where not all who are called out run the race and/or complete the race.
- The race is not asking Jesus into your heart and then doing what is right in your own eyes
- The race begins when you are inseminated from above with the very nature of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. It is the new nature that must grow to maturity. This nature will bear the fruit of the Holy Spirit and in the image of Christ.
- Without the above, the believer has missed his or her mark The cost to the one who does not overcome is missing the first resurrection since “Blessed and Holy is the one who participates in the first resurrection.
- There are many “believers” who, by their own decision to not hear and see and to not obey, will miss the mark and be held for the second resurrection.
- From the vision, it appears many in the second resurrection do not understand their plight for they have been deceived to believe righteous conduct was not part of being “saved”
- The faces I saw start out in deception where they think they are going to hear “Well done thou good and faithful servant.” and where they think they have the promises to the overcomer.
- As the light shines brighter and begins to illumine what is inside them, they begin to understand their true condition and that their deeds have already judged them.
- Each time the light increases in its intensity, it exposes more to the person’s true condition and that their expectations of being joyously ushered into the New Jerusalem is unfounded and not going to happen. I believe it is at this point they begin to recognize their plight and the fact that it is too late to do anything about it. Saying this is the ultimate and highest regret factor one could ever have is no exaggeration.
- Based on not seeing one face left in what I was shown, the term “many” is also a serious warning that we should not be sleeping as others are, but rather we are to wake up and shake off any slumbering spirit that might be in us and to press on without wavering toward the goal that has been set before us—“That I might know Him and the power of His resurrection.”
(“A Wake-up Call to the Church”, 3517-1)