Yes, I know, you read that really great book about the kid who went to heaven and came back to tell about it. You’re excited about it, and you want to share your excitement with me. Thanks. Really, I mean that sincerely. I really do appreciate your desire to share this thing that means so much to you.
That’s why I don’t enjoy telling you what I must tell you: I don’t believe it, not one sentence, not for one minute. It’s all nonsense, poppycock, hogwash, fiddle-faddle, balderdash. I don’t enjoy saying that, because I know the implicit accusations make me come across as a jerk. Who am I to say these people are flat making stuff up, or, at best, mistaking dreams for reality? Why would I think they would do that? Let me suggest that that is exactly the wrong question.
The question I ask is, why would I believe such a fabulous tale? Why would I be so credulous, and, at the risk of really insulting you, gullible? What has this author done to earn my confidence? I don’t know this guy, and telling me he’s a Christian and a pastor doesn’t help one bit. The English-speaking world is filled with “Christians” who aren’t, and “pastors” who lie or are themselves deceived.
Let’s not be naïve. A ready willingness to believe extra-biblical claims is not a sign of faith. Rather, incredulity is a sign of maturity. When people come with fantastic stories of heaven such as are not even found in Scripture, our response should not be, “Wow, that’s amazing,” but “Prove it.” You know, like the Bible exhorts us (1 John 4:1; Acts 17:11).
Finally, a tip for would-be tellers of tall tales: if you want to fool me, first learn what the Bible says about heaven, and limit your own descriptions accordingly. Granddad-with-wings was kind of a give-away.