Why do millions believe they will go to heaven or hell when they die? Where did this idea come from? What does the Bible say about an afterlife? An ancient Babylonian legend tells of a young man, Etana, who was challenged by an eagle to soar to the heavenly abodes. Convinced that the eagle had a good idea, Etana, with the eagle, rose higher and higher into the sky until the whole earth looked like a mountain, people like dust specks, and the ocean like a gardener's small irrigation ditch. As Etana flew higher, he finally reached the dwelling of Anu. The offended god, upset by the presence of a mere mortal in his heavenly abode, hurled Etana and the eagle down to Hades. So far as human legend is concerned, Etana's flight was certainly one of man's earliest recorded attempts to go to heavenly abodes.
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