As you know, I'm in the New Testament for awhile now and am working my way through the gospels. In Luke 23, we see the crucifixion of Jesus but also witness a salvation on the cross next to Jesus. Hence, the title of this post "deathbed confessions".
"Deathbed" confessions do work but in my opinion aren't the best idea. After all, a lot of people die without that one last chance to make amends. We see one in Luke 23:39-43 where Jesus is hanging on the cross in between two thieves. One mocks Him and the other acknowledges his sinning state and asks Jesus to remember him in His kingdom.
And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. - Luke 23:43
No baptism required. No church attendance required. No good deeds required. This man...this thief, went to paradise that day when He died, despite a lifetime of bad living. What does that say about God's grace to us?
We are saved by grace, not of our own good deeds (Eph 2:8-9), just as that thief on the cross. It is hard to believe that God wants all of us in paradise with Him (2 Peter 3:9), yet He does.
Will you see Jesus in paradise someday? If you died today and when standing before God He asked you why He should let you into heaven what would you say? Unless your answer included a personal relationship with Jesus, God won't let you in. Although the thief waited until the last minutes of his life, He still got to know Jesus and personally asked Him to be included in "paradise".
I can't wait to see what heaven will look like in all of its glory. I'm sure that the sights will go far beyond what my vision of paradise is. If you are not sure that you are going to heaven when you die and want to know how to know, please click here. It will be the best decision you ever made.