In the Nick of Time
Someone once asked if I believe in deathbed salvations. I most certainly do. The thief on the cross is an excellent example. He had just enough time to call on the Lord before dying with Him at Calvary. Jesus told the thief, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” (Luke 23:43)
On the other hand, I’ve witnessed to individuals who think they can continue “living it up” but then get saved at the last minute. That’s a dangerous idea to entertain. Every day people suddenly die from car accidents, drive-by shootings, terrorist bombings, heart attacks, storms, and other tragedies. Those that didn’t have time to make peace with God are now suffering the eternal consequences.
Some might complain it’s not fair for one to get saved just before dying while others were faithful Christians for years. This reminds me of the Parable of the Vineyard Workers in Matthew chapter 20. All the laborers who began working during the eleventh hour received the same wages as those starting earlier in the day. Remember God is merciful and doesn’t want anymore to perish (2 Peter 3:9).
It’s better for one to get saved late in life than not at all. So if you don’t know the Lord, I urge you to receive His free gift of salvation right now. Don’t put it off! You may not have another opportunity.
I’ve heard numerous testimonies of people coming to know the Lord moments before dying. One evangelist I know saw this happen with a family member. A few years ago, Nick Kinn received a call from his sister nudging him to meet with their 86-year-old uncle about getting right with God. John Kinn had attended a Lutheran church but didn’t know if he was going to heaven. Nick prayed with his uncle to get born again. Five days later, Nick’s sister called again informing him Uncle John had died.
“Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”
- 2 Corinthians 6:2