“As cute, comforting, and feel-good as this book might be it is not in agreement with the Bible's descriptions of heaven. Most of Colton's descriptions sound like something any child who had been in Sunday school their whole life (and had a good imagination) could have come up with in response to the "open ended" questions asked by his parents over the next 2-3 years. More worrisome than that, some of his statements appear to directly contradict Scripture. Here are some of the potential discrepencies:
- Colton claims that a picture of Jesus with beautiful blue eyes is completely accurate vs. according to the Bible Jesus was an average looking Jewish man (Matthew 1, Isaiah 53:2)
- Colton claims that everyone in heaven has wings except for Jesus vs. according to the Bible the Christians' glorified form will be like that of Jesus (I John 3:2, Romans 8:29)
- Colton claims the angels carry swords to keep Satan out of heaven vs. according to the Bible until some point midway through the book of Revelation Satan is allowed to appear in heaven to accuse Believers before God (e.g. Job 1-3, Revelation 12:10)
- Colton claims that people (including his father) will fight with swords and bows in a great battle at the end of time vs. in Scripture the various end times battles are fought by Michael and his angels (Revelation 12:7-8), Jesus who merely speaks (Revelation 19:21), and fire from heaven (Revelation 20:9)
- Colton claims that the gates of heaven are gold studded with pearls vs. the Bible says that each gate is made of a single pearl (Revelation 21:21)
Even in general principle, the idea of being caught up to heaven and then reporting on it afterwards is not in line with the Bible. None of the people in the Bible who were raise from the dead gave descriptions of what they saw between their death and resurrection, and in II Corinthians 12:1-5 the man who was "caught up to paradise" was not allowed to tell what he had seen there. Any Christian who believes the Bible is indeed the authoritative Word of God should have serious skepticism about this book. Heaven is certainly real, but this book appears to be, at best, sentimental imagination. For those who do not view the Bible as infallible or prefer to credit personal experience over Scripture this might be a nice feel-good read.”
I have this on my TBR list. I was hesitant to read it for exactly this reason. At least now I can go into it knowing what to expect if I do decide to read it, which I probably won't.
Not everything in it is baltantly unscriptural and some parts were genuinely touching (e.g. his description of meeting his miscarried sister). However, given the number of discrepancies I find it hard to swallow any of it as genuine and not the "sanctified imagination" of a child prompted by his parents and what he has heard in church. I wouldn't recommend wasting the time on it...I'd rather find a good book written about heaven based on the Bible rather than "I was there!" testimony. I've heard Randy Alcorn's book on heaven is phenominal (if a bit heavy and long).
Our pastor mentioned this book this past year, and I think he had similar conclusions to yours. I've always been very curious about what people like Lazarus saw, and if they could remember anything. I wonder if that's why God told people like John and (I think) Daniel to go ahead and write what they saw, because normally they would not be allowed to write a "after death experience".
I always wonder the same thing about Lazarus and the few others like him...maybe they had to go to a "waiting room" where they could have a good time but didn't get the grand tour of heaven :). I agree that John and Daniel were "special cases" because they were being given explicit prophetic messages for God's people which they were then told to share...not the free-wheeling "I visited heaven and this is what I saw" that you get from books of this genre.