When talking with someone about their need of salvation, I have heard some say they will wait until the end of their lives to accept Christ…just like the thief on the cross. I like to point out that there were two thieves who were crucified with Christ. One did accept Him as Savior. The other did not. We read in Luke 23:39-43, “And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.” What is the difference? Why did one believe in Jesus, but the other one did not?

It is possible that we if resist putting our faith in the Lord Jesus, that our hearts become hard. We read in Hebrews 3:8, “HARDEN NOT YOUR HEARTS, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness.” When we do that, the heart becomes unresponsive to the Lord’s voice and His admonition. A hardened heart is when the conscience is seared and unfeeling. When that happens, truth makes no impression on us. Scripture speaks of some who have had “their conscience seared with a hot iron.” (1 Timothy 4:2) When we continue to delay believing God’s Word, we can become unfeeling towards the Lord and His call to salvation. When we continue to neglect His gracious offer of eternal life, it becomes harder to accept it. We are warned in Hebrews 2:3, “How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?”

With all that said, it is still possible for one to neglect salvation for years, and then put their faith in the Lord Jesus as the last moment. God’s grace is still offered until the 11th hour. Many people have been saved at ‘death’s door.’ However, it is such a dangerous thing to put off being saved. One could die unexpectedly, or become mentally disabled to the point where there is no understanding anymore. I often visit people in nursing homes. Sometimes I’ll meet someone who is completely incapacitated and beyond being able to respond. As I visit and pray for those people, I often wonder if they accepted the Lord when they were able to think straight. If not, and the Lord does not restore their thinking capabilities, they are doomed to Hell. It is just not a chance worth taking. Someone like that is risking their eternal destiny. The scriptures are clear. 2 Corinthians 6:2 says, “…behold, NOW is the accepted time; behold, NOW is the day of salvation.” (306.1)