Suicide has become a controversial topic. But after watching a film that promoted assisted suicide as a positive thing, I am reminded of the truth that the God of the Bible, that Jesus Christ, is a God of love and hope. And this isn’t a topic that should be side-stepped; this is people’s lives and souls.
I know it’s controversial for good reason: when someone kills himself, it’s a tragedy. It is heartbreaking and pitiable to think someone was so down and out that he couldn’t bear to go on. That is the epitome of tragic and it seems almost worse than if someone had murdered him or her. So I pray I come across gently because I cannot imagine the depth of pain someone feels when a loved one commits suicide. This I write for the sake of those still alive…
When a person ultimately decides to end his or her own life, that person is declaring that there is no hope and that he or she does not love himself. For:
“In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. And we are members of his body.”-Ephesians 5:28-30 NLT
To kill one’s own body is an act of self-murder, and ultimately, it is to hate one’s self. And the Bible says:
“Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.”-1 John 3:15 NLT
If someone professes to be a Christian, but then murders herself, eternal life, the Holy Spirit, salvation, sadly, did not reside within her heart. Confession of following Christ is one thing, but “fruit” or evidence of following Him is the definitive measure by which we can observe if someone genuinely has eternal life within them—or not.
The Bible warns in Romans 8:5-9:
“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. 8 So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God. 9 But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.”
Because of these verses and many others that command us to take charge of our minds, of our thought lives, I do not believe mental illness is a disease that is unfixable or something we cannot control. It is the result, the consequence, of not obeying the above Scriptures, which promise that being fleshly “minded” literally leads to death, but if we pursue being “spiritually minded” we will have life and peace–the opposite of suicide and depression.
There are certain sins that lead to eternal spiritual death or destruction. Then there are ones that don’t. Murder happens to be one of those sins that separates us from heaven and there’s only one other eternal place for the unrepentant murderer…hell. There’s no repenting from self-murder because you are no longer living and able to make the choice to trust in Christ and stop murdering…
It’s difficult to hear because we pity the victim of murder, but again, very tragically, the person who kills himself is not only the victim, but the perpetrator. Being the victim of one’s own act of suicide does not negate the fact that you also became your own murderer. And again, murder is a sin that leads to an eternity outside of heaven and in the eternal place of destruction. If you destroy yourself, even if at one time you were a confessing Christian, 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 says you are ultimately destroying God’s temple and there are devastating consequences for that:
“Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.”
Our body is God’s temple and it does not belong to us who profess to be Christians:
“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”-1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Killing yourself is also not glorifying to God, but rather, it is the opposite. The Bible is rife with verses about God being the source of our hope and joy, about Him having good plans for us and our future, and that He is the God of all comforts who strengthens the weak.
However, when we commit suicide, we are declaring that none of that is true. And here’s the thing: it IS true! If you do not know it as such, then you are believing lies (and all lies come from Satan), and you are not living in the truth, in the new abundant life Jesus promises to give to those who truly trust in Him:
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”-John 10:10
This doesn’t mean someone who is depressed or suicidal is automatically disqualified. You can go through that dark valley of thoughts, but it’s the person who is eventually overcome by them, who no longer has the faith to keep standing in Christ, but throws in the towel or throws out their faith who is disqualified. That is why Jesus also warns us to endure until the end and to persevere. He declares that only those who “endure until the end” will be saved (Matthew 24:12-13).
I pray this opens your eyes to the sad truth that those who commit suicide may be freed from the torments of this life, but tragically, they have now transported themselves to a place of far worse, eternal torment because they did not know or believe the truth that would have set them free…
I pray if you are believing the lie that suicide is your way out of the pain of this life you will see that according to the Bible, according to Jesus, it is murder and is only a door to far greater torment in hell and there is no escaping that place after you’ve left this world.
As God pleaded with His people before:
“I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live, loving the Lord your God, obeying His voice and holding fast to Him, for He is your life and length of days…”-Deuteronomy 30:19-20
And may you pray this prayer to God the Father in Jesus’ name:
How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me? Consider and answer me, O Lord my God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death, lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed over him,” lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken.-Psalm 13:2-4
That this reality may be yours:
“You see, we don’t go around preaching about ourselves. We preach that Jesus Christ is Lord, and we ourselves are your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ. We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies. Yes, we live under constant danger of death because we serve Jesus, so that the life of Jesus will be evident in our dying bodies. So we live in the face of death, but this has resulted in eternal life for you. But we continue to preach because we have the same kind of faith the psalmist had when he said, “I believed in God, so I spoke.” We know that God, who raised the Lord Jesus, will also raise us with Jesus and present us to himself together with you. All of this is for your benefit. And as God’s grace reaches more and more people, there will be great thanksgiving, and God will receive more and more glory. That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.”-2 Corinthians 4:5-18 NLT