Brief background: We can have a family member, a relative, or a friend on the deathbed. If this person is a believer of Jesus Christ, we can be certain to meet them beyond our life on earth. As, heaven is the eternal destination, of anyone who is in Christ.
But if this loving family member, relative, or friend does not believe in Jesus Christ as his/her Lord and Saviour, the matter is totally different. The passing away of this person can mean totally losing this person.
Hence we should pray for his/her salvation. This is the most precious matter that can happen to this person. The gift of eternal life is the only thing that this person can receive.
In the 1st part, we cover questions related to praying for a person on the deathbed, specifically a person who has not accepted Jesus as his Savior.
In the 2nd part, we have the prayer –Prayers for the dying unbeliever
Why pray for the sick and dying?
Here we are specifically concerned about those who have not chosen Jesus Christ as their Lord Savior. Thus non-believers in Christ.
Eternal life is the most precious matter. It is eternal life with Christ Jesus. Life on the earth is limited. For those who are blessed with long life, this can go up to 120. But beyond this life on earth, we have a gift of eternal life. We receive this when we have accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.
No one comes to the Father God, except through Jesus. The Bible verse from the Gospel of John points to this. Jesus says this in his conversation with Thomas. Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14:6 NKJV)
The most popular verse in the Bible is the one below which speaks about eternal life.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16 NKJV) This summarizes the Bible the very best.
When we hear the word of God, we can choose to believe him. This is true for us each time we read the Bible verses when we hear it preached, when we remember it.
Now, in the mercies of the Lord, this dying person can have an encounter with the Lord. Wherein the words of Jesus can come to him/her. While the person was given various chances to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior
Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. (John 5:24 NKJV)
Just because the person did not choose to receive Christ as Lord and Savior, does not mean that the person should reject Jesus Christ as his/her Lord and Savior when the harsh realities of the end of Life can change the choices people make.
We know about the robber who was crucified on a cross by the side of the cross of Jesus Christ. Even in the last few moments of his life, he was so fortunate to be saved. So without judging anyone else, let us remember to pray for the pouring down of the rich mercies of the Lord over them. ( It’s always important never to postpone this choice to the last moment. Since we do not know how soon or the state of our mind then.)
Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, “If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us.”
But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying, “Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.”
And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise. (Luke 23:39-43 NKJV)
We are the sheep. Jesus is the good shepherd. This statement of Jesus refers to us, those who have accepted him as the Lord and Saviour. You can see that Jesus gives them eternal life.
My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. (John 10:27-28 NKJV)
The attitude we need to have is that of Jesus. Jesus expects every shepherd to leave the 99 and go to seek the one lost sheep.
So He spoke this parable to them, saying: “What man of you, having a hundred sheep if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? (Luke 15:3-7 NKJV)
So it is clearly our responsibility to earnestly pray for the lost. Anyone who has not received Jesus Christ as his Lord and Saviour is lost. Here in the case of this article, it’s the unsaved family member or relative or friend.
We would not have a brother and not desire and pray for his salvation. We know that salvation is the most precious thing that matters. Eternal life through salvation is what we want all our near and dear to have. It’s best to keep praying for people whom we love. It’s important we do that. But in the last days and hours, the importance of this is very very important. We ought to love our brothers and sisters. Wanting them to get the very best and wholesome blessings of life which the Lord God has purposed them to have. The verse reminds us that loving our brother and sister is important for us to do.
If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?
(I John 4:20 NKJV)
Prayers for the dying unbeliever
Dear Lord God, we thank you for blessing us with our dear brother …. ( reader please add the name of your brother or sister. In the rest of the prayer substitute he, she, or name as required). With gratefulness, we remember your loving kindness towards us through his life.
At this time, when he is battling for life, we remember how You, Lord God so loved each one of us including this dear brother that You gave Your only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (ref John 3:16). We pray that our brother … is blessed to believe in you and is blessed with eternal life.
We pray that our brother …. has an encounter with You. Oh Lord Jesus, We come to you for our dear beloved brother…. We pray that Your tender Loving Mercies reign over him.
We remember the mercy with which you blessed the robber who was already crucified on the cross with the gift of eternal life, even in the last few hours of his life. (ref Luke 23:42-43). Hence we pray with expectancy and hope for our brother.
We pray that our brother is blessed with the grace to receive you as his Lord and savior.
We know that you are able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think. ( ref Ephesians 3:20) We ask for the gift of eternal life for our brother (name).
Lord, we know that as your word says, how meaningless is it for a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? (ref. Mathew 16:26) We ask Lord Jesus that our brother is able to secure his soul into eternity.
We also know that although you had judged Sodom and Gomorrah, but based on Father Abraham’s request you relented. Together as loving people we plead for Your loving Mercy and Kindness over our brother.
As we bring this prayer, we believe in answered prayer knowing that with God nothing will be impossible. ( ref. Luke 1:37)
All this we ask in the matchless name of Jesus Christ..