There are many contrary opinions when it comes to the question as to whether Christians who make the choice to end their lives will make it into God’s kingdom. Many quote the 6th Commandment, Thou Shall Not Kill, or 1 Corinthians 3:16, if anyone destroys the temple of God he will be destroyed but these scriptures, taken in context, don’t necessarily speak of the act of killing oneself. So then, without a definite point of reference we are left to look attentively into the word of God to see his perfect will as it relates to suicide.
A Matter of the Heart: Man looks on the outward appearance but God sees the heart.
God knows every thought before we even think it and there is a difference between contemplating suicide, and making a decision in the spur of the moment to give your life for your fellow man. In my opinion, people who commit suicide as an act of heroism … such as Samson ( Judges 16:28-30) are not judged the same as those who commit suicide as a way of escape from their troubles, or in the case of the unbeliever who makes the choice to end their lives of misery just to spend eternity in a fate far worse than death.
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.”- Matthew 11:29
To commit suicide is the ultimate show of a lack of faith in the power of God. I write this not from a condemning or judgmental standpoint, but from the actual standpoint of someone who is a Christian, and who also reached a point in life where I felt there was no reason to go on. Yes, at the age of 22 I found myself living alone in a one bedroom apartment with 3 babies – an 18 month-old and 4-month-old twins – and was so down and depressed that I made the decision to end my life. In that moment I felt completely alone, and the voice of the enemy echoed in my ear that even at such a young age I had completely ruined my life beyond repair – but in my darkest hour, Jesus kept me. I call him my Savior not out of religious duty, but because when I was at the point of death he showed up and filled my heart with a desire to live on.
That was a major turning point in my life. I began to realize that people, situations and hard times will come and go; that nothing is worth taking your life over, and that it’s in the darkness of the night that the light of Jesus shines bright. But it takes having faith in God, faith in his word and knowledge of who he really is to be able to stand when is seems all hope is lost.
When you commit suicide you are not only killing yourself, but the purpose God created you to serve.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11
I’ve come to find that most people with higher callings on their lives are faced with thoughts of suicide early on because the devil knows that we all have to go through a trying process in order for God’s purpose to be revealed in us. He also know that this process is not easy, and if he can get us to be so discouraged by our circumstances that we take our focus off of God, than he can get us to abort the process. Notice I said get us to abort the process, because Satan doesn’t have the power to stop the work of God in our lives. He is defeated and will forever remain. The challenge is to not allow he who is already defeated to continuously defeat you.
As Christians, we are called to trade in our will for his, but the act of suicide shows that you have traded in his will for yours.
“Then Jesus said, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” – Matthew 16:24
To answer the question posed in the title of this post, are Christians still saved by grace when they commit suicide? Let me just plainly state that I don’t know. If a man dies in his sin and is unrepentant does he still make it into heaven? Can anyone without faith please God? Or can you truly say that Jesus is Lord if you don’t trust him to be Lord over your problems, your fears and all of life’s circumstances?
I’m not sure, but I have contended in my heart that no matter what life brings, good or bad, I’m going to run on and see what the end is going to be. I want to finish this race, reach my goal and hear my Lord and Savior say…well done.
This blog is intended to be an open forum please share your thoughts on the subject of suicide. Be sure to follow to receive email notifications of new posts.