Jesus' response to the criminal should offer hope to each of us. He didn't rescue the man from physical death. He didn't deny that the man deserved the punishment he received. But he made a commitment that the death would not last. His physical death would open the door to spiritual life, bringing him into Paradise with Christ Himself. We continue to face physical death, occasionally for a crime we've committed, usually for a reason that has nothing to do with the sins which makes us worthy of capital punishment from our Judge. We can imitate the example of the second criminal, admitting our guilt but placing our trust in Christ Jesus. His promise to the criminal is also for us: our physical death can open the door for us to eternal Paradise.