I always wonder about people who do horrible things all their life and are taken early and unexpectedly. Does God give you a chance to repent after you die?
No. At death, a person’s definitive choice either for or against God is settled and his eternal destiny is settled immediately. But – and here’s the point where Christian hope enters in – we do not know when final death occurs. From a theological perspective, final death is when the soul leaves the body. It is possible that, in some way known to him alone, God may offer a human person a chance at final repentance at the time between final unconsciousness and final death, even though such a chance would not be apparent to onlookers this side of eternity. For those who die unexpectedly, we should hope and pray that they died in God’s friendship, rest in peace, and attain eternal glory.