Riches in Heaven

I like this tale a lot. Theologically correct (mostly), it has an appropriate message. It was published on the groaners listserv, and the author is not known.

A rich man was near death, and was saddened because he had worked so hard for his money, and he wanted to take it with him to heaven. So, he began to pray that he might be able to take some of his wealth along.

An angel heard his plea and appeared to him. “Sorry,” the angel said, “but you can’t take your wealth with you.” The man implored the angel to speak to God to see if He might make an allowance. The man continued to pray that his wealth could follow him.

The angel reappeared and informed the man that God had decided to allow him to take one suitcase with him.

Overjoyed, the man got his largest suitcase, filled it with pure gold bars, and placed it beside his bed. Soon afterward the man died and showed up at the Gates of Heaven to greet St. Peter.

St. Peter, seeing the suitcase, said, “Hold on, you can’t bring that in here!” The man explained to St. Peter that he had permission, and told him to verify his story with God.

St. Peter checked and came back saying, “You’re right. You are allowed one carry-on bag, but I’m supposed to check its contents before letting it through.” He opened the suitcase to inspect the worldly items that the man found too precious to leave behind, and exclaimed, “You brought pavement?”

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