Suicide - What does the Bible say?

There are six people who the Bible records as having committed suicide. Judas Iscariot is the most famous (Matthew 27:5), but Abimelech (Judges 9:54), Saul (1 Samuel 31:4), Saul's armor-bearer (1 Samuel 31:4-6), Ahithophel (2 Samuel 17:23) and Zimri (1 Kings 16:18) also committed suicide. We know for a fact that five of them were ungodly, wicked men, and there isn't enough information about the sixth— Saul's armor-bearer to make a determination about his character. Samson is also sometimes considered a suicide (Judges 16:26-31), but since Samson's goal was to kill the Philistines, rather than himself, it is doubtful whether Samson's death could be considered a true suicide. Suicide is essentially "self-murder" and murder is a sin, outlawed in the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:13).

Having said that, we must add that murder, suicide, or any other sin is not the deciding factor regarding salvation. A person's eternal security is determined by, and only by, their relationship to Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9). If a person who is unsaved commits suicide, they have simply sent themselves to eternal punishment faster than they would have gone had they died a natural death. Regardless, they will be in hell only because they have rejected Christ, not because they have committed suicide. But what if a Christian commits suicide? Can this happen?

The Bible says that when we are in Christ, our salvation is guaranteed because His Spirit dwells in us (2 Corinthians 5:5). That same Spirit is put into the hearts of all those who believe in Jesus Christ (John 3:16; 1 John 5:13). The Bible also makes it quite clear in Romans 8:38-39 that nothing can separate a Christian from Christ's love, not even suicide. If no "created thing" can separate us from the love of God, as the verse says, then no person (not even our own selves) can separate us from His love by any act that we do including suicide. A Christian will exhibit the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22) and will be protected from sin as they abide in Christ (John 15:4). However, if a Christian falls and commits the terrible sin of suicide, that sin would still be covered by Jesus' blood.

Christians are not immune to the despair that leads to suicide; the enemy is a great deceiver (John 8:44) who wants us to forget that victory is ours in Christ (John 16:33). Still, suicide is a very serious sin againt the Creator. There is no circumstance which justifies a person, especially a Christian, to take his or her own life. We are supposed to die to ourselves, not kill ourselves. Sorrow over our sins or mistakes should lead us to repentance rather than self-harm so that we can be restored and not destroyed, for it is God's heart to repair and restore that which is broken (Psalm 51:17; Isaiah 42:3; Matthew 12:20). Even when things look incredibly bleak and hopeless, we must trust that what His word says is true: "Surely there is a future, and your hope will not be cut off" (Proverbs 23:18).


Related Truth:

Does God love me?

How should a Christian deal with depression? What does the Bible say about depression?

Who are we in Christ?

How can a Christian overcome the guilt of past sins?

Spiritual warfare - What does the Bible say?


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