I see a lot of stuff nowadays floating around the stagnant pool of the interwebs talking about Heaven. I assume it’s the soon-to-come movie titled Heaven is for Real based off of the book of the same name that’s causing the fevered conversation to raise it’s ugly little head. As you can probably tell from my written tone, I’m not a big fan of the book or those like it.
To be fair, I haven’t read the book. I haven’t read many other books like it either. Some would say that means I don’t have the right to comment on it, but I would disagree. Because I have read a book (a compilation of books, actually) that gives a 100% accurate description of heaven. (That’d be the Bible, in case you’re not following) So when I read the description of these other “heaven” books, a lot of red flags get raised. There’s one red flag in particular that rises high above the others and is definitive proof (for me, anyway) that these books are fakes. And I can describe it with 3 little words:
Robbed at Gunpoint.
I know…you’re thinking “What? That makes no sense!” Follow me for a second.
When people are robbed at gunpoint, the police often ask them to give a detailed description of their attacker. A great majority of the time they cannot. Why? Because they never saw him – they couldn’t take their eyes off of the gun. Our brains are wired to focus on the things that induce the most fear, and if we are robbed at gunpoint, the most fear-inducing element is the gun.
The same would be true if someone were to go to heaven and live to tell about it. Being in the presence of almighty God would induce fear – it did in Isaiah when he was given a prophetic vision of heaven, and it did in the apostle John when he was given a similar vision. If a person were to come back from that, the only thing they would write about is glory of God. Yet most of these books peddle unbiblical truths that glorify only the author or the experience. They are self-focused, or focused on details that I believe most people would miss (halos? really??), simply because they wouldn’t be able to take their eyes off of Jesus.
That said, I could be wrong. I haven’t read the books, so maybe I’m just talking about things I know nothing about. What about you? What’s your take on books like this?