A friend of mine says that God will forgive someone if they repent just before they die, and that they'll still go to heaven. Is that true? I hope so, because that's what I plan to do. — G.S.
One of the Bible's greatest truths is that God stands ready to forgive us whenever we turn to Him in repentance and faith—even at the end of life.
But listen: The Bible repeatedly warns us not to wait until the last minute! For one thing, you do not know what the future holds; life is uncertain, and you could be gone in an instant. And would your repentance be sincere—that is, would you honestly be sorry for your sins? Frankly, I doubt it. The Bible says, "I tell you, now is the time of God's favor, now is the day of salvation" (2 Corinthians 6:2).
Do you remember what happened when Jesus was crucified? Two criminals were condemned to death at the same time, and as they were dying the first one mocked Jesus and refused to believe in Him. But the second man turned to Jesus in faith and asked to be saved—and Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise" (Luke 23:43). He was saved—but the first man was lost. How do you know you won't be like him?
Don't presume on God's grace, and don't treat lightly Christ's death on the cross for you. If you don't want anything to do with Christ right now, why do you want to spend eternity with Him? Don't miss the joy God has for you, both now and in eternity. Instead, face your need of Christ and open your heart to Him today. You'll never regret it.