A pastor who claims that he died and visited heaven after a horrific car accident will see his riveting story head to theaters nationwide on Friday, telling The Church Boys podcast that he hopes the film will help people find God.
As TheBlaze previously reported, Don Piper, author of the 2004 New York Times’ best-selling book, "90 Minutes in Heaven: A True Story of Death and Life," maintains that he died in a collision on Jan. 18, 1989, experienced the after life — and then returned.
As Piper's lifeless body lay covered in a tarp on the pavement for more than an hour, he said that fellow pastor Dick Onerecker, whom Piper did not know personally, arrived at the scene and began to pray over Piper's body for more than an hour.
It was during that time that Piper told The Church Boys that he visited heaven and interacted with past friends and loved ones, proceeding to describe the astounding sights and sounds that he witnessed.
"Over the heads of all these people ... through the gate, there's a massive boulevard," Piper said, describing heaven. "And it appears to be made from gold, but gold that is so pure that you can see through it."
Listen to Piper describe heaven below:
He went on to describe God and Jesus Christ as bright lights, though he said that he did not directly interact with the Almighty.
"I'm glad I didn't get any closer to him than I did," Piper said. "When I got back here and lay in a hospital bed for 13 months had 34 surgeries, had I seen Christ in heaven — had that taken away from me [and I] came back to what I came back to — I never would have been able to function here again at all."
The pastor said that there was also intense music in heaven, describing what he heard as "thousands of songs at the same time without chaos." Despite being separate musical pieces, he said that these songs all came together in profound unity.
"That music still accompanies me," Piper said.
As Piper was purportedly experiencing all of this, Onerecker was praying over his badly injured body, with police and rescuers reportedly having already declaring Piper deceased.
"He put his right hand on my right shoulder from behind and began to pray for me, and did so for nearly an hour and a half," Piper said. "After an hour and a half, he was alternating verbal prayer with musical prayer."
And as Onerecker sang, Piper said that he awoke and began to sing right along with him, shocking the preacher and sending him quickly out of the car to tell authorities that Piper was alert.
"The dead man is singing!" Onerecker, who has since passed away, reportedly said.
See the "90 Minutes in Heaven" trailer below:
Since his accident, Piper said that he's been sharing his story in an effort to try and get others to believe in heaven as well. He knows that he — like many others who have heavenly tourism stories — has critics, but he pays them no mind, as he stands by his story.
While some have charged that Piper and others like him have profited from sharing stories about purported visits to heaven, he said that he has not made any money from the "90 Minutes in Heaven" film and that proceeds will go to charity.
The movie, starring Hayden Christensen and Kate Bosworth, opens nationwide on Friday.