Heaven is for Real critics are 'Pharisees', says Todd Burpo

The father of Colton Burpo has a strong word for Christians who say his son's near-death encounter with Jesus couldn't have happened: "Read your Bible."

Todd Burpo has dismissed Christian critics of Heaven is for Real, the film about his son's near death experience. 

Heaven is for Real has been a hit at the box office, taking in over $56 million at the box office in the fortnight since its release. 

It depicts Heaven as experienced through the eyes of four-year-old Colton Burpo when he nearly died during emergency surgery in 2003.

That experience gave rise to the New York Times bestselling book, Heaven is for Real, which forms the basis for the movie version starring Greg Kinnear as Todd Burpo. 

According to GodReports, Todd has told critics of his son's account to read their Bible. 

"The Jesus in the Bible is the same Jesus who did this for Colton.  If Christians don't like that they must be Pharisees," he said, referring to the strict religious leaders at the time of Jesus.  

He continues: "Christians and sinners still appreciate miracles.  Pharisees never have and never will.  

"In the Bible, Pharisees used to call themselves Jews.  Today they call themselves Christians." 

After surviving surgery, Colton told his Christian pastor father about the people he had met during his visit to Heaven, including a miscarried sister that he didn't know of and his great grandfather whom he had never met.  

He also described sitting in Jesus's lap and seeing him riding a rainbow-coloured horse, and seeing Mary kneeling before the throne of God.  

Todd adds: "The people who say Colton's trip to Heaven can't happen, I say, 'Read your Bible.'" 

Hear Colton talk about his experience in this video: 

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