Several years ago, a Christian woman asked me what she could do for her father, who was not a Christian, and who was dying of cancer. After prayer, and some serious soul-searching, I provided her with three suggestions for helping her unsaved father pass.
1. Be kind
Dying without Christ is a terrible, frightening experience. Not having the comfort of the gospel leaves one alone to face death. Being helpful and compassionate even to those who refuse Christ is not wasted because Christian love glorifies God in every circumstance. In this regard, Jesus said:
Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
- Matthew 5:16
For recovery, comfort, repentance, mercy. As a Christian, you are the only one who has access to God in prayer so take advantage of this privilege that we have in Christ. As the writer of Hebrews explains:
15For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. 16Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
- Hebrews 4:15-16
3. Do not give up on urging the person to become a Christian
If the lesson of the thief on the cross teaches us anything, it teaches us that God's love is much deeper than we realize. He is prepared to accept sinners who truly repent at any time. So, never stop pleading with them to be saved. Be ready to share the gospel with them, right to the end.
- Describe the efforts and results you have had in sharing your faith with relatives and friends.
- What would you say to comfort someone who has lost a friend or family member to suicide?
- What words would you like engraved on your tombstone? Why?