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Does suicide send Christians to hell?
by Valentino Clemons
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Two of my daughters, a nephew, and I were on our way home from the Houston Rodeo the other night and they began to discuss a celebrity who committed suicide. My youngest said it was too bad for that person because now they are in hell. I quickly asked who told her such nonsense. She told me one of the teachers in the church youth group. I told her that was untrue. She asked if a person committed suicide, would they be in heaven or hell. I explained that depends on if they trusted Jesus Christ for salvation, or themselves. If the answer is Jesus Christ, they are in heaven. She understood where I was going.

Their conversation had me wondering. First, why was the person who told them that allowed to teach? And even more importantly, does committing suicide send a person to hell? I can not answer to former, but the answer to the latter, is without reservation, emphatically, unequivocally, well, NO! That teaching is on old wives’ tale that has seeped its way into the church. Allow me to explain the rationale for my response.

From an exposition standpoint, suicide was not created by God. It was created by man, namely the first man in the scripture. You probably know him better as Adam. What was he told? “And the Lord God commanded the man saying, ‘From any tree of the garden you may eat freely, but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you shall surely die.’” (Genesis 2:15-16). And what did the man do? In Genesis 3:6, he ate. From that moment, he experienced a slow and painful death. He killed himself by his disobedience. That was the first ever suicide recorded in the scripture. It was a man-made occurrence.

Here is why that is important. According to Romans 8:28- 37, God predestined, called, justified, and glorified (in the past tense), all Christians to be conformed to the image of his Son. In verses 31 - 39, Paul writes that as a result of God’s work, nothing, I repeat, nothing can separate those believers from the love of God. And if you take a look at verse 39, one of those items he lists that can not separate from God is called a created thing. I just proved suicide is a created thing, so not even suicide can separate the Christian from God.

Here is further proof. From a theological standpoint, if suicide can prevent a Christian from heaven, then the implication is, suicide is greater than the work of Christ and his blood. But do you really think that will fly? In Colossians 2:13 - 14, Paul taught because of the work of Christ, all our transgressions have been forgiven, and everything that could ever oppose that forgiveness has been nailed to the cross. If suicide is greater than Christ, then in Matthew 28, Christ does not have all authority, meaning either he, Matthew, or both lied. See how silly that proposition is?

So in the exegetical and theological realms, there is no such thing as a Christian in hell because of suicide. In fact, there are no Christians in hell period. It is like burying survivors of an airplane crash. It does not happen.

Let me add a final thought. This piece was not written to endorse or even encourage suicide for anyone. Suicide robs you of the opportunity to serve God and be a testimony for him. Anyone who feels on the verge of suicide should seek help. And if you know of anyone who is exhibiting the signs of suicide (consult a professional if you do not know what they are), you have a duty to step in and try to prevent it.

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Member Comments
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Dr. Henderson Ward  19 Aug 2014
It is clear that you believe in Hyper-Calvinism and therefore is hostile to those who believe otherwise. The Calvinist concept of eternal security has been hotly debated for centuries and will no doubt continue to create friction between theologians. Your opinions are just that, nothing more or nothing less. Where you err is in thinking your opinion is somehow more valid, more doctrinally accurate than those who support the opposite view that is called Arminianism. I will not venture into the debate of Calvinism versus Arminianism because anyone who has even a rudimentary grasp of Soteriology (the doctrine of salvation) will be familiar with the details of the argument. What the Bible teaches, and genuine Christians everywhere understand, it’s that followers of Jesus Christ need to continue their spiritual journey to the end in order to receive the crown. This is not opinion but biblical, irrefutable fact. Even the Apostle Paul was not excluded, and he declared, “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” (1 Corinthians 9:27) Paul would have been talking nonsense if he COULDN’T be castaway after he was gloriously saved on the Damascus Road. Are we questioning Paul being saved on the Damascus Road? God does not override ones freewill, we will always retain the right to say No to God and go our own way; and that is how God made us. Demas was saved and he went away from God (2 Timothy 4:10), Judas was a disciple and he went away from God (Acts 1:18), many others were saved and they chose to go away from God. Christian ministry, in all its forms, is essentially about helping those of the household of faith to keep on trusting God and persevering to the end, and the Bible tells us why, “But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.” (Matthew 24:13). Suicide, as commonly understood, is the clearest sign that a person has no trust in God and no faith in Jesus Christ; and shows contempt for the resources that God has provided for his children. Blessings.
tanya Johnson 15 Mar 2011
when Judas committed suicide in the Bible, it said he went to his own place.You can't repent after you committ suicide.Who do you think is telling that person to kill themselves, not God! It's the devil. You are giving yourself as a sacrifice to the one who's telling you to do it. There's no such thing as once saved always saved. You can make choices in life that takes you out of the will of God and you send your OWNSELF to hell, and suicide is one of them!
Valentino Clemons 15 Mar 2011
It's not my custom to leave public comments on my articles. I think that discourages open dialogue. But in the this case, I’m going to deviate because what I don’t want is your opinion to be the last impression on the readers’ minds. I understand your analysis, but it’s “your” analysis. I purposely didn’t include Judas because he was not saved. My writing was about saved folks. Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Paul wrote no created thing can separate us from the love of God, but your opinion contrasted Paul, and the passage in Colossians. So that leaves me with this question. Are we to trust the word of God or your opinion? My hope is that the readers stick with the word of God. And your denial of the doctrine of eternal security, well, opens another can of worms. The worst being you don’t think very highly of Jesus. But you have inspired me to write an article about soteriology, particularly eternal security. Look for it within the next 30 days. Thank you.


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