Monday, January 10, 2011

Heaven is for Real--a review

I am quite skeptical, so it was with great caution indeed that I agreed to review Heaven is For Real: A Little Boy's Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back. I wasn't sure what to expect, and am still not sure how much of it I believe--which is why it has taken me so long to write this review.

The book is well-written and reads quite easily. I don't want to doubt the tales of little Colton Burpo because, quite frankly, we all want to know more about Heaven. I also do believe that God uses children to speak to adults.

I would recommend this book, but would say that everyone should decide for themselves how they feel about it. I have thought about it off and on for months, and am still not quite sure how I feel!

This book was provided by Thomas Nelson


Linda said...

Well, after reading this book, there are many thoughts on my heart about the content. It's true, that there's no way a 4-yr. old boy would know details as he descibed to his mom and dad concerning his experience. We are so "human" when it comes to things about the eternal and spiritual things. Some say the Bible is only a figurative book---therefore, those people will be no closer to believing this than they were. However, for those of us who DO believe in an eternal destination, it will just put us in more "definite" reality of this world is not our home---we're just passing through---and we'll be even more anxious to go there to be with God and Jesus for eternity. May all people ponder this thought, and make absolute sure they will be there in eternity. Trust what Jesus Christ did on the cross to take us to His Father if we repent and believe!! Linda in Florida

Christine "Rhay") said...

Hello, I recently saw on the Today Show the boy who said he went to heaven. I fully believed as it all sounded very legitimate, and the parents who are pastors also convinced me. It all sounded great and believable until the boy said he saw animals in heaven as well. I stumbled at this point and this alone raised alot of questions.

Animals, as we know them, do not have spirits. They cannot and are not born again with the seed of God in them. They are created for our enjoyment and for us to learn some things about the ways of God, which ultimately points us to Jesus - to worship Him. Angles are created of God and are viewed as having wings, portrayed by Ezekiel this way, and often in other books of the Bible as Revelation. Someone said to me "What about the living creatures portrayed in Revelation, and what about the new earth talked about there?" My response is that the living creatures represent a deeper message, and if these living creatures are to be in the new heaven and new earth, they are specifically created for this specific time.

That this boy saw animals there, raises questions in my mind. I believe this will stir up alot of the reincarnation and the animal rights advocates, which has been evolving to heights that almost place more emphases on animal rights than we do human rights. Just this alone, what this will stir up in favor of the animal rights movement, speake more to me of divisiveness and a tempo for this movement to get on a band wagon to say: "See, I always knew my cat would be in heaven with me someday." These kinds of responses speak to those not fully in love with Jesus, which is what heaven is all about - focused on Him and His beauty alone to worship him and Him alone and knowing He is all we want.

Christine Rhay

ParaPacem said...

Haven't read the book, I tend to be skeptical of such things since Jesus mentioned that the Law and the Prophets should be sufficient - but felt the need to mention animals.
Some would have us think that Heaven will be a big, barren rock, since trees, rivers and flowers also do not have immortal souls. Such a view is not at all in keeping with the description of Eden, and the new Heaven and Earth are expected to be like a reflection of the perfection of God's Creation before sin brought damage and distortion to all things.
Billy Graham said it simply when he said, "If I'm in heaven and I want my dog, then my dog will be there."
Also, it seems foolish to judge those who want their cat in heaven, to be less 'fully in love' with Jesus than the writer. To assume that Jesus is so jealous that He cannot tolerate someone who loves not only Him, but one's family, beauty, angelic music, etc., would paint a picture of a petty, vindictive Christ.
Yet the Scriptures portray a God who so loves His children that He reflects His own glory and beauty for them to see in everything that He created. Perhaps we would do better at drawing people to Christ by not mocking the desire of a lonely old person whose only faithful friend in this life is a cat, or a dog, or a parakeet, and letting them find the answer when they reach heaven? Perhaps God can do a better job than we can, at teaching others what will or will not be there.

Mark Scott said...

If there are no animals in heaven, just wondering then how Jesus is going to come riding on a great, white horse..."And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called, Faithful and true, and in righteousness he does judge and make war." Revelation 19:11...Hmmmm?

trishpickard said...

The book, HEAVEN IS FOR REAL was a fascinating read for me. For many it has given them hope for eternal life. To me, this is a far too important a subject to put my hope in a little boy’s experience. I wanted to see what God had to say so I went to the Bible. I have written a Bible study about heaven. I would be delighted to send you a free copy. Email me at and I will email you a copy. Trish Pickard