Answers

By   •   September 1, 2004   •   Topics:

Q:

My cousin had very serious emotional problems most of her life, and finally they overwhelmed her and she committed suicide. I firmly believe she was a Christian, but did she lose her salvation by doing this? Is suicide the unpardonable sin?


A:

Whenever I answer a question like this, I’m deeply aware that someone may be reading this who is seriously contemplating suicide—and I would do everything in my power to convince them not to take that final, drastic step. With Christ there is always hope.

God loves them; He loves them so much that Jesus Christ was willing to die on the cross for their salvation. And others care about them, as well (even if they have a hard time believing it). Suicide is never God’s will, and even in the midst of life’s worst storms we can look to Christ and discover that He truly is “an anchor for the soul, firm and secure” (Hebrews 6:19). The first step back from the brink of suicide is to turn to Christ and open our hearts to Him.

Suicide is always a tragedy—but in itself it is not the unpardonable sin. The only sin God cannot pardon is the sin of rejecting Him. God knew your cousin’s heart, and He also knows that mental illness sometimes clouds a person’s judgment so much that they aren’t fully responsible for their actions.

At the same time, ask God to help you be sensitive to the needs of others—especially someone who may be facing discouragement or depression. Often simply knowing that someone cares will help them turn the corner.

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72 Comments

  1. Toni says:

    I do love the Lord and I do try to wait upon his word however I suffer severe depression. Yes I take meds but that can only help so much and then there’s me that is left. I lost a child at years old. I was angry at God but did not see it for several years. I did repent and ask his forgiveness. Now I’m in another unsufferable pain of losing my grandchild through adoption though I have pleaded with my daughter to let me have him. I pray and pray. I start my days and end my nights in worship. I get shaken and lose faith that he’s in control and his will by the depression, heartache and wondering why? I am contimplating suicide yet again in my life. I can not bear the thought of my beautiful grandson being given away. will I be forgiven.

    1. BGEA says:

      Hi Toni,

      We’re so glad you took the time to connect with us on our Facebook page. We were heartbroken to read your story.

      You mentioned that you have been a firm believer in God, and that sounds like a good place to start. But from other comments you’ve made, we wonder if your belief in God includes believing part of what God tells us in the Bible: that He made you; that He loves you more than you can imagine and has a good purpose for your life (not just to suffer). … That because you and every one of us are separated from God by our sins—choosing to live our lives our own way, He sent His only Son into the world to lay down His life in death as a perfect sacrifice to pay for our sins. And that if we trust in His Son, Jesus, accept His sacrifice as payment for our sin, and hand over our lives to Him, He will give us new lives with hope for the future.

      2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” Christ can transform our lives from the inside out, but we must accept His free gift of forgiveness and love. If we don’t, He will allow us to keep living life our own way with all its frustration and despair.

      We know you feel that life for you has hit a dead-end. But you need to know that nothing is impossible for Jesus. Luke 1:37 says, “For nothing will be impossible with God.” He created you, He owns you and your life, and taking your own life is as far from Jesus’ love as you can get. But if you give your life to Jesus—meaning putting Him first, and let Him shape your life, nothing can ever separate you from His love.

      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 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.”

      Ask Christ to take all your problems; “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.

      http://peacewithgod.net/

      For some practical advice about how to live each day with God, click here: http://bit.ly/LivingDailyWithGod

      You might also be interested in this short video about God’s love for you: http://bit.ly/GodLovesYouVideo

      Or in this short note about unanswered prayer: http://bit.ly/UnansweredPrayer

      The Suicide Prevention Hotline is 800-273-8255

      God bless you!

      – BGEA Staff

  2. Travis Jenkins says:

    Thank you Dr. Graham for clearing this up. Peace be unto you.

  3. Tammy Anderson says:

    First..MARTHA…ARE YOU OKAY? I AM PRAYING FOR YOU!!!
    Second…how can I give peace to a spouse of a victim of suicide? (Both are Christians)

  4. Jonathan Winckker says:

    I only ask this because it was asked to me, I know the only sin not forgiven is the blasphemy of the Holy Ghost (denial of Christ). On the subject of suicide how can one ask forgiveness if he or she killed themselves? How do I answer this? I am concerned if I tell this person it is forgiven they may try, and if I tell them it’s not they may not find hope in Jesus. Please help me to answer this?

  5. Verla Anne Harris-Lawrence says:

    So many don’t understand suicide and thinks people can’t be forgive, but through Christ we have Grace and Mercy. Selah

  6. Martha says:

    Please pray for me as this seems to be the best option for me right now. It bothers me most every day.

    1. BGEA says:

      Hi Martha,

      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 online with someone from our team or you can call 1-877-247-2426 to talk to someone.

      http://peacewithgod.net/

      The Suicide Prevention Hotline is 800-273-8255.

      God bless you, Martha.

      – BGEA Staff

  7. Michele says:

    Good to know

  8. Tasha Rhodes says:

    Thank you for your enlightenment on this subject!!! Now it will never be an option!!!

  9. Veronica Horne says:

    This really help and gave me a clear understanding