ABOUT A DEATHBED CONFESSION?
terminology “deathbed confession” is generally understood to
mean that a person who is near death or believes that he or she
is dying feels the need to confess their sins. In determining
whether or not a deathbed confession is an acceptable means of
obtaining forgiveness of sins, let us analyze the inspired
scriptures. First of all, we ask, is the person who confesses
their sins while in the process of dying an alien sinner or an
erring child of God? An alien sinner is a person without
Christ, God, or hope of eternal life (Eph. 2:12). Alien sinners
are those souls accountable to God who have never obeyed the
gospel of Christ. Those individuals are not in the spiritual
family of the Heavenly Father. Children of God, who sin, are
among those who have obeyed the gospel, but have become
two laws of pardon under the Christian dispensation. Those two
avenues of pardon are for the alien sinner and the erring child
of God. Since an alien sinner is not in the spiritual family of
God, he or she needs to “be born again of the water and the
Spirit” (John 3:5). This is accomplished when a person
obeys the gospel of Christ (Rom. 1:16; Rom. 6:17-18). In
obeying the gospel to be saved, every alien sinner must receive
the Word of God by either hearing or reading it (James 1:21;
Rom. 10:17; John 20:30-31); believing it (John 8:24; Heb. 11:6);
repenting of sins (Acts 17:30-31); confessing their faith in
Christ as the Son of God (Acts 8:37; Matt. 10:32-33); and to be
baptized for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38; Acts 22:16).
There is not anyone who can bypass the law of pardon for the
alien sinner by attempting to pray through for salvation.
child of God must repent, confess his or her sins, pray to God
for forgiveness of their sins, and become faithful unto the Lord
(Acts 8:18-24; I John 1:8-9; Rev. 2:1-5).
should wait until dying before turning to the Lord. We should
devote our entire life to Him (Eccl. 12:13). You and I cannot
look into the spiritual heart of a dying person who confesses
their sins. Nevertheless, it is dangerous for any person to
procrastinate until their dying moment to turn unto God. There
is the danger that a person’s heart will have already hardened
(conscience become seared) because of their continually
rejecting the will of God (Heb. 3:13; I Tim. 4:2).
It is true
that some in their sunset years of their life obey the gospel.
However, a “deathbed confession” is not a substitute to obeying
the gospel of Christ (II Thes. 1:7-9).