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Beloved, precious soul, I am pleased to present this subject to you as a special kind of gift, hoping you will accept it and find it both practical and valuable for your life here on planet Earth, and even afterward.

Surprising, Vivid, and Indelible Impressions, Pleasing or Alarming, Registered by the Mind-Spirit

What has been for you, esteemed reader, the most impressive, traumatic, or unforgettable impression of your life to the present time?

Perhaps some brush with death? A surgical procedure with your life itself on the line. An automobile accident. Being robbed. Finding yourself suddenly in mortal danger of drowning, being dragged away by rushing currents of water or caught up in tornadic winds. Shaken by strong earthquake shocks.

Maybe a surprise, heart-stopping, face-to-face confrontation with enemy forces, or menacing villains. Or being present just when a very special loved one was taking his/hers last agonizing breaths.

Or, on the positive side: Your wedding day, the birth of your first child, graduating with a university degree, obtaining that dream job, opening your own business, winning a big lottery prize.

When the mind is impacted by such highly dramatic impressions, it takes snapshots of events and circumstances: People present, their particular involvement and physical surroundings (operating room, streets, or highways; buildings, rooms, auditoriums, and furnishings; roofs or tree limbs flying through the air, roads turned into streams, firearms or other weapons, etcetera).

Though many years go by, when some reference or question causes the mind to remember, it can instantly reproduce the scene in exact detail, as if it had just taken place.

Such is the incredible power of the human mind. Makes me stop and wonder how such fantastic powers of recording, recall, and full-color visualization, including a whole gamut of emotions and impressions, could have possibly been produced by chance evolutions as per Darwinian postulations. What do you think?

Well then, whatever may have been the most extraordinary and unforgettable impression of your life to the present, there surely yet awaits you a far more sensational one! Nor will you be able to exempt yourself from it, whatever your social, economic, political, or religious status may be; your fervent desire, fear or will.

Fantastic image of a door opening through two books into a star-studded space, for the study Surprising, Vivid, and Indelible Impressions, Pleasing or Alarming, Registered by the Mind-Spirit.

I surmise you may have already divined that reference is to the very tremendous impression you will experience when, having taken your physical body its last breath, you pass, as a spiritual being, without a human body, from the material-carnal dimension, through the Door of Time, to the totally spiritual dimension. Just so! That is, precisely, what I am contemplating -for you, and for me. An impression so great and surprising that, astonished beyond measure, you will open the eyes of your soul to the widest, with thunderstruck amazement… and so will I!

Seeing what? ANGELS! Yes, the first beings you will see in that spiritual realm will be angels.

What indisputable evidence supports this answer?

The personal, very specific testimony of Jesus Christ in his story of what happened in the case of the beggar Lazarus, when this poor man’s weak, sick, and badly mistreated physical body died. Jesus said: …and he was taken by the ANGELS to Abraham’s bosom. Luke 16:19-31

If you do not believe this testimony, even
going so far as to ridicule Jesus Christ
and the Bible, I would cordially invite you
to not only examine but also seriously try
to refute Evidence for Believing, available on such Internet sites as,, and on this site, the category of subjects “Science, the Bible, and Christianity.”  

An image of a great angel wing before abstract space, for the study Surprising, Vivid, and Indelible Impressions, Pleasing or Alarming, Registered by the Mind-Spirit.

Going through the Door of Time, Lazarus, upon entering spiritual territory, sees angels! True angels, and not the fantasy ones of visions and dreams. Angels loyal to God the Father, who arrive to take Lazarus “to the bosom of Abraham,” that is, to Paradise1

Abstract painting of the soul of Lazarus moving into spiritual realms, for the study Surprising, Vivid, and Indelible Impressions, Pleasing or Alarming, Registered by the Mind-Spirit.

What tremendous impression will have flooded Lazarus’ mind when that humble being suddenly found himself in the presence of those angels? Without a doubt, so indescribably marvelous, profound, and incomparable as to leave him speechless! That fantastic initial impression being followed immediately by an uncontainable irruption of great spiritual joy when he realizes he is eternally saved from all suffering, injustice, and the weight of a carnal, mortal body.

Safe from all evil ones and all evil -eternally! In that instant, he begins to bask in the joy that will be his for the endless ages to come. “…enter into the joy of your Lord.” 2 Smiles and congratulations on the way to Paradise! Consolation and rest there, 3 while awaiting

the resurrection and eventual transferal to the permanent heavenly home.

That experience Lazarus had when he abandoned his physical body and crossed over into the fully spiritual dimension… I also want to have it! What about you, precious soul so very much loved by God?

Lazarus was privileged to have that experience, not because he was a beggar or sick, rather because he was a good and just person who believed in God, despite the tragedy he was living in his very own fleshly body.

A believer in God, unconditionally, whatever may take place. 4 Obedient to the good and agreeable and perfect will of God, 5 to the divine Truth which purifies the soul through the blood of Christ. 6 Just 7, merciful and loving to all 8. And “…faithful unto death.” 9 

These stand out among the actions and attributes that prepare one to have such a happy encounter with God’s angels immediately after the death of the physical body. Have you taken the steps of hearing the gospel so that you might have an intelligent faith, 10 repenting of your injustices, damaging hardness of heart, vices or crimes, 11 confessing with your lips that Jesus is Lord 12 and being immersed (baptized) in water “for the remission of sins?” 15

Do you practice being just and merciful? Do you live a holy life? If your answer is “Yes,” then, tremendous! But, if your answer is “NO,” then, beware! A thousand times so! Please do not be filled with vain illusions, I beseech you. Because that beautiful experience Lazarus had, so full of wonderful impressions and emotions, will not be yours. Rather, that of the selfish, avaricious, unmerciful rich man who appears in that same story related by Jesus as a real event.

Painting of Lazarus laying on the steps of the house of the rich man with a dog licking his sores, for the study Surprising, Vivid, and Indelible Impressions, Pleasing or Alarming, Registered by the Mind-Spirit.

These steps lead to the rooms of the great house of the rich man. Behind the columns and doors, the rich man, his family members, and guests “fared sumptuously every day,” while Lazarus lay “at his gate,” “full of sores,” “desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table.” Luke 16:19-31

Painting of an encounter of the rich man and Lazarus, for the study Surprising, Vivid, and Indelible Impressions, Pleasing or Alarming, Registered by the Mind-Spirit.

“The rich man also died and was buried.  And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’" Luke 16:22-24

Compassion, mercy, and generosity, yes. Avarice, no, nor pride, indifference, stinginess, or evil treatment.

When the rich man’s physical body died, as a spiritual being he also goes through the Door of Time between the material and spiritual realms. And on the other side? What a tremendous impression he suddenly has! The greatest by far of all his existence to that point.

However, nothing positive about it. Rather, hair raising and terrifying. The whole scene, deeply chilling to the heart and mind. Dense, swirling darkness. A silence that makes the soul tremble violently. Naked fear! In that instant, that unhappy man understands that all is lost for him, eternally.

Do angels come for him? I do not know for certain. Jesus Christ does not mention any

Realistic painting of Lazarus expressing great joy as he moves toward Paradise, for the study Surprising, Vivid, and Indelible Impressions, Pleasing or Alarming, Registered by the Mind-Spirit.

in his recounting of events, immediately stating the painful condition of the rich man in Hades. He was “in torments.

Even so, I consider it probable that angels were awaiting the arrival of the rich man in the spiritual realm, certainly not with smiles and congratulations, but with silence and chains, rhetorically speaking, to take him to Hades. My opinion is based in part on the involvement of angels in the process of separating the unrepentant evil from the good and casting them into a place of punishment. 14

So then, you and I decide which of these two extreme impressions, extreme to the highest degree, we would like to experience. That which Lazarus experienced. Or that which the rich man had. I have decided for that of Lazarus, and I am struggling to assure God grants it to me when the time comes. What is your decision? Do you need additional guidance? More spiritual help?

I am at your service, without obligation or cost on your part.

1 Luke 23:43. Jesus said to the repentant thief crucified with him: “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”

2 Matthew 25:19-23

3 Luke 16:25

4 Hebrews 11:1-6; 1 Peter 1:6-9

5 Romans 12:1-2

6 1 Peter 1:22   7 Acts 10:34-35

8 Matthew 12:7; Matthew 23:23; Romans 2:12-16; James 2:13

9 Revelation 2:10   10 Romans 10:17

11 Acts 3:19   12 Romans 10:9-17   

13 Acts 2:37-47; 22:16; Mark 16:15-16; Romans 6:3-7; 1 Peter 3:21

14 Matthew 13:39-49; Revelation 14:14-20

Text and Document Composition by the author Homer Dewayne Shappley. All rights reserved. The only restrictions on the use of this document are the sale of it in any format and proper identification of its origin.

"Travels of the Soul-Spirit" is 

Category. Caught Up. A reference to what happens to the soul-spirit after the death of the physical body. "Caught up from material realms to spiritual ones."

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