Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Only "Pharisees" Question the Validity of Colton Burpo's "Heaven Is For Real"?

Posted by Christine Pack

If Christians question how biblical the hit movie Heaven Is For Real is, well, "they must be Pharisees," according to Todd Burpo in a recent Christianity Today article. Burpo is the father of the little boy, Colton, who allegedly went to heaven and came back. Todd Burpo collaborated with his son, who was 4 years old at the time of his alleged heavenly encounter, to pen the runaway bestseller Heaven Is For Real, which has now been turned into a hit movie.  Todd Burpo was also asked in the interview what his response would be to those who have challenged or raised concerns about Heaven Is For Real.  His response: "Read your Bible."

That sounds like he's defending the book he and his son penned together as being entirely biblical, doesn't it?  But one problem that many Christians are having with the book (and now, movie) is that Colton Burpo's account of heaven includes descriptions and concepts that are outside of what Scripture has told us about heaven.

John MacArthur, senior pastor of Grace Community Church, has written an article entitled The Idolatry of Experience, an article that is a response to the book Heaven Is For Real. In this article, Pastor MacArthur biblically addresses the popular (but wrong) idea today that all experiences are equally valid and must be accepted as being on par with Scripture. From the article:
"One of the most troubling aspects of Heaven Is for Real is the way Todd Burpo constantly insinuates that personal experiences—even the spectral memories of a three-year-old boy under anesthetics—are somehow more compelling than Scripture alone."
You can read John MacArthur's entire article here.

 Additional Resources 

Heaven Is For Real - A Book Review (Pastor Gary Gilley)

Beware The Heavenly Visitation Books

The Burpo Malarkey Doctrine

Pastor Justin Peters Explains Why Stories of Trips To Heaven Do Not Line Up With the Bible

Your Best Afterlife Now - An Examination and Critique of Claimed Visits to Heaven and Hell, by Justin Peters

Heaven Is For Real, a review by Tim Challies

90 Minutes In Heaven, a review by Tim Challies