I have a question. Many people, including children, claim to see family, friends or pets that have died. Some children give a solid description of people that they have never even seen or should even know. Can a person that has died come back and appear to loved ones. If not, how do you explain a small child talking or seeing a family member that died before they were born? Diana N.

In I Samuel 28: 3 – 25 King Saul found himself in a difficult situation, Samuel had died, and the Philistines had gathered themselves in Shunem ready to battle against Israel.  When Saul saw the number of Philistines, he inquired of the Lord, but the Lord did not answer him.  We are told in I Samuel 16:14 that the spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit was used by God as an instrument of judgment on Saul.  In desperation, Saul sought out a woman with a familiar spirit to try and contact Samuel.

When Samuel actually appeared in I Samuel 28:12, the woman cried out in fear, implying that when she summoned people before, it would be an evil spirit that would impersonate that person.

Hebrews 1:14 tells us that angels are “…ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them, who shall be heirs of salvation…”  Angels are spiritual beings, yet the Bible gives several examples of them appearing with physical bodies.  Could these angels appear as friends or loved ones who have passed?  Yes, it is possible.  But it would not be the actual person because when a person dies, their soul goes immediately to either heaven or hell, and there is nothing in the Bible that would give us reason to believe that they would have any ability to leave either heaven or hell to visit living family members.