Answers

By   •   July 27, 2005   •   Topics:

Q:

Does God know when every person is going to die, or is it all left up to chance? If He does know, does that mean it can't be changed, even with the best medical help? I've always been curious about this.


A:

When we will die is not a matter of accident or chance; the Bible makes it clear that our lives are in God’s hands. He knows the time of our death, and He has even appointed it. The Bible says, “Man’s days are determined; you (God) have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed” (Job 14:5).

Does this mean we shouldn’t seek medical care when we are sick, or that it doesn’t matter if we do dangerous things because God will deliver us anyway? No, not at all; not one verse of Scripture would support such a view. Satan urged Jesus to cast Himself down from the top of the Temple and trust God to deliver Him—but Jesus refused to do such a foolhardy thing. He told Satan, “Do not put the Lord your God to the test” (Matthew 4:7).

Your question is actually a complex one; there is much about death we do not know, for God hasn’t chosen to answer all our questions about it. But we do know this: Someday we will all die—and the real question is, are we prepared for that day? We can be, by giving our lives to Christ and trusting Him to forgive and save us. Have you made your personal commitment to Him?

When we know Christ, then we can say with the psalmist, “My times are in your hands” (Psalm 31:15). Jesus came to give us life—life right now, and life in the world to come. Make sure of your commitment to Christ today.

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54 Comments

  1. Carol Walker says:

    Thanks for this; I couldn’t remember where in scripture to find it and want to give it to my sister. Her fiance is diagnosed with terminal liver cancer and she’s angry with God for not answering her prayers. This may help her; but if not, it will give her something to ponder.

  2. Debbie Gooden says:

    I lost my son to suicide 5 yrs ago. I have been asked to speak and tell my story to grief counseling group
    I can’t remember where I read the scriptures about God knows when you are born, and the day he takes you home.

    1. BGEA says:

      Hi Debbie,

      We are so, so sorry to hear about your son’s passing. Here are some verses that may help you with your talk.

      Psalm 139:16
      Ecclesiastes 3:1-2
      Job 14:5

      May God bless you as you share your story with others who are grieving.

      – BGEA Team

  3. anndong says:

    I agree with pastor

  4. Kim says:

    I want to die now. I am tired.

    1. BGEA says:

      Kim, we are very concerned that you have considered suicide, and we urge you not to take this drastic, final step. God loves you and wants what is best for you. He has a future for you — both on this earth and in eternity. Remember that you are important to Him. He says, “You are precious to me . . . and I love you” (Isaiah 43:4). The very reason Jesus Christ came to earth to offer Himself in sacrifice is so that we might have life in all its fullness. It is His desire that we are set free from depression, fear, frustration and hurt so that we might experience this abundant life.

      Thoughts of taking your life do not come from God but from Satan. Jesus said, “The thief’s (Satan’s) purpose is to steal, kill and destroy. My purpose is to give life in all its fullness” (John 10:10). We are warned in 1 Peter 5:8-10, “Be careful – watch out for attacks from Satan, your great enemy. He prowls around like a hungry, roaring lion, looking for some victim to tear apart. Stand firm when he attacks. Trust the Lord. . . . He personally will come and pick you up, and set you firmly in place, and make you stronger than ever.”

      Give all your problems to Jesus and “cast all your anxiety on Him” (1 Peter 5:7). Then center your attention upon His love for you and His wonderful plan for your life. Rest in the assurance that Jesus will “never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5).

      God wants to help you if you will let Him, and so do others. God knows about your problems, and He also knows the answer to them. By yourself you may feel helpless, but with Christ’s help there is hope for tomorrow. He can bring good out of even the toughest situations.

      We urge you to begin by giving your life over to Jesus Christ (click the link below). Then share your problems with a pastor or with someone else who can help you and encourage you. We just said a prayer for you and will continue praying. You can also use the link below to connect with someone from our team.

      http://peacewithgod.net/

      The Suicide Prevention Hotline is 800-273-8255. We have also passed on your comment to our team so we can respond further.

  5. Jamie Fisher says:

    Why God takes a young mother or children bothers me the most. So why should we pray for them?

    1. BGEA says:

      Hi Jamie,

      You are asking a very good question, one that only God can truly answer when believers get to heaven.

      God loves us very much, and He has a plan for each of our lives. But sometimes His plan is one that we can’t understand. In Isaiah 55:8, God says, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways.” He is a holy, perfect God, and we are not. There are some things we won’t understand until we get to see Him one day in heaven.

      While we might not understand why things happen, we can have peace knowing that He is a God of comfort and understanding. Remember that God Himself took on agonizing pain and experienced death (before rising again!) to take our sins upon Himself. Think of it—the weight of the world’s sin on Him. He was rejected by His own people, and Isaiah 53:3 calls Him “a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief.” He understands our pain and can give us the strength we need to get through it.

      For more on why there’s suffering, click here: http://bit.ly/QuestionsAboutSuffering.

      Here is a short article from Billy Graham related to your question:

      My Answer

      Do you know for sure that you’re going to heaven? Here’s how to be sure: PeaceWithGod You can also chat online with trained volunteers if you have other questions you need answered or want more information on how to receive Jesus as your Savior.

      God bless you,
      -BGEA Staff

  6. Bud says:

    One must consider “free will” and suicide…taking one’s own life via free will gives us a clue…does God determine when we die or does God let our free will (smoke, drink, drugs, over eat, etc) affect how long we live? RC Sproul makes it clear: God’s will doesn’t change man’s will (or it wouldn’t be free) and man’s will doesn’t change’s God’s will…the doctrine of concurrence shows us how God will take our mistakes and use them to exercise his providence…example: Jacob had 12 sons and a daughter…he showed his love to one, Joseph, more than the others…the brother’s conspired to get rid of Joseph and did so…God didn’t alter their will…however, in the final outcome God took their bad choices and made them good unto his will…

  7. winfrey bandah. says:

    We Should Have Faith In Him Who Created Us. And He Promise Us That After Death There Is Internal Life For Those Who Believe In Him. We Have To Prepare Ourselves B4 That Time.

  8. Daryl Grisham says:

    As usual no one can answer questions about God. We can only live by faith. There is no correct answers to life’s hard questions. My son died at 21 and he honored his mother and father and yet his life was not long. He was also a missionary and a Godly man.

    1. Penny says:

      Daryl- you are so right in that we have to simply live by faith. I can understand the pain from the loss of a child. My 30-year son died 18 months ago by suicide, which has added a complicated level to the grieving and healing process. I can honestly say it is only by the grace of God and my faith that I get through most days. I know I will see my son again. Blessings to you and your family.

  9. Jeffery says:

    Interesting!

  10. Matthew Fitzpatrick says:

    This is a crazy feeling in that I feel in my spirit I feel like I’m gonna die next month & won’t be able to finish 2016 so this feeling scares me pretty good

    1. Katherine says:

      Matthew- know that whatever happens God is with you. Do not be afraid of death, we get to be reunited with our Father on that day. See you when we are both there, brother.