During the course of the last several years, it seems that the subject of suicide is more in the forefront of the media and public view due to various well-known people choosing to end their lives for unknown reasons. I know as a former Mental Health Counselor that suicide is a horrible act committed by people who, choose to end their lives rather than deal with whatever challenges they are facing in this life. I know that life can be challenging at times, and some people face more challenges than others. However, what does the Bible say about those who commit suicide, and what does God have in store for these people who decide that they want to exit out of this life and enter prematurely into the next?
The act of committing suicide involves a person making the choice to kill himself or herself for various reasons for which a person does not want to face. It is obvious that people who commit suicide believe that they will be able to solve or escape their problems by killing themselves. Is this what the Bible says?
Life is a gift from God! God gave us our lives and our bodies as gifts, so that we may serve Him! “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?” (I Corinthians 6:19). We are not to harm our bodies in any way, including murdering our bodies. “If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are” (I Corinthians 3:17).
The act of suicide, or self-murder is wrong because it goes against God’s teachings against murder. Exodus 20:13 and Romans 13:9 give the commandment “thou shalt not kill.” This is often applied to the act of homicide, which involves the killing of another, however, it would also apply to self-murder, as one life is as precious as another in God’s Eyes. God made all of us, and we are all special! “Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture” (Psalm 100:3).We are also to treat others as we would want to be treated, which would prohibit murder (Luke 6:31). Therefore, if a person who is of the age of accountability commits suicide, then that is no different in God’s Eyes than if he or she had killed another person. The only difference is that with suicide as opposed to homicide, there is no opportunity for the one committing the murder to repent and receive forgiveness from God for this sin. God tells us in Revelation 21:27 that no sin can enter into heaven.
Finally, another reason that suicide is wrong is because we are supposed to lean on and trust in God to help us with whatever challenge we are facing in this life. We are to cast our cares on God, as He cares for us (I Peter 5:7). In order for us to be faithful Christians, we have to put God first in all things, and this includes relying on Him to take care of us in all situations, both good and bad. A faithful Christian who attends all worship services of the church of Christ, and who puts God first every day, will NOT resort to suicide under any circumstances. One reason for this is because a faithful Christian will understand that he or she can overcome any challenge with God’s Help. “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philippians 4:13). A faithful Christian will also know that suicide is a selfish act of murder, and he or she will understand that God will punish those who commit harm upon themselves in this way. “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters,and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8).
If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide or has attempted suicide in the past, I strongly urge you to seek help immediately! There are various means of support for those facing this issue, and I hope that you or someone you care about will seek the help that is needed. Suicide is not the answer for any problem, no matter how overwhelming the situation may seem. All challenges that we face in this life are temporary, and if we hold fast to God and put all of our cares and trust in Him, He will help us overcome any temptation, and any challenge in this life. We were created by God to love and serve Him (Ecclesiastes 12:13), and we are to keep our focus on Heaven which is eternal, rather than the temporary events of this life! I hope that this article helps shed some light on the subject of suicide and how God views this sinful act.