Since some people clearly do not repent before death, and God wants everyone to be saved, they have to repent afterwards. That to me is obvious.
It’s like a sign I saw at a petrol station a few weeks ago, “Alcohol purchased here may not be consumed inside or outside the premises.” Er, what was that? My house is outside the premises, Mongolia is outside the premises, Proxima Cantauri is outside the premises. The entire universe is divided into points which are inside the premises, and points that are outside. If alcohol cannot be consumed either inside or outside then it cannot be consumed at all anywhere at all, ever, by anybody, and it’s a bit of a nugget for them to charge for booze that you can’t drink. Of course what they really meant was, “If you buy plonk here don’t drink it in the shop or on our forecourt, take it somewhere else.”
However back to my real point. I do believe in totally irresistible grace. When life goes GAME OVER (and it’s looking uncomfortably close as I get older) I shall see God, but without a body that gets tired and cross, and without the emotional baggage of a childhood at a miserable boarding school, where Anglicanism was run in a way that hid its light under not a bushel, but a complete dunghill of meaningless ritual, bad music, worse architecture and creepy clerics. Not only will I see perfectly, but I shall see without the reasons for looking the other way. But what if someone still chooses to reject grace? Will God take away their freedom? I think not, but on the other hand given perfect knowledge and perfect mental equipment to understand it what other decision could anyone make?
That’s not the point. The real killer question is “What decision will we reach now?” Given limited information will we choose for or against God?
Back to the original verse. God will have everyone repent. Not everyone does it in this life, so some must do it in the next. That can’t be what the verse is about. What would happen if God punched the big red switch and stopped the universe now? Specifically what would happen to all the people who would never be born, and hence never have a chance to enter a relationship with God? Heaven would look a bit empty without all the trillions from the first, second and third galactic empires that we haven’t got to yet.