Suicide: Unforgivable?

Suicide: Unforgivable?


For many of us, suicide is an “it happens to other people” event. Meaning that like the fire that burned down an empty warehouse on the other side of town, we hear about it and quickly filter it out of our minds. The fact is that Suicide is an epidemic in our nation and our world. According to the World Health Organization, close to 800,000 people die due to suicide every year, this is one person every 40 seconds. Suicide is a global phenomenon and occurs throughout the lifespan. Effective and evidence-based interventions can be implemented at population, sub-population and individual levels to prevent suicide and suicide attempts. There are indications that for each adult who died by suicide there may have been more than 20 others attempting suicide.

As you are reading this in your church, your small group or other ministry related setting, think about the fact that 2 or more people have just died by suicide. That is mind blowing and people need the Lord everywhere at all times! When these atrocities occur that means that many more people who loved and knew those people intimately and relationally have lost a loved one to suicide. You may be thinking well, this is someone else’s problem, there are internet and phone based services and hotlines and mental health facilities and workers specialized to deal with this: and you would be correct. However, the most pressing questions, issues, fears and torments for these survivors (many of whom will be thinking about suicide as well) are spiritual. That’s right! Related to things beyond this life, concerning eternal destinations, judgment and damnation. That is why this resource is needed now more than ever for you and your church. We all need to be more aware, better equipped and ministry-minded in order to be able to help these people who have questions that only the Word of God can effectively answer. This ministry is to specifically help those people who are all around us!

What are the spiritual questions that people who have lost a loved one to suicide might ask?

1. Is my loved one in Hell?

2. Is suicide the “unforgivable sin”?

3. How can the church help me?

4. Where can I find hope?

5. Is it my fault?

As you ponder these questions please attempt to put yourself in the shoes of someone who has lost a loved one to suicide (if you have lost a loved one, perhaps you have asked one or more of these questions) and who is desperately looking for spiritual answers, (which are often provided by movies, television, social-media, blogs and friends and family) and have come up empty. When these individuals hear about suicide and its spiritual implications from culture and other sources (apart from the Scriptures) it is easy to see that they believe untruths, they suffer from isolation, often time’s depression and suicidal thoughts themselves. They need Biblical answers to their questions and together we are going to learn how we can provide them for them.

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