You may remember we asked a poll on this question last week. Results can be seen HERE.
I grew up being taught that it is.
But is it true? Best place to start is “what sends you to heaven?” There is only one thing you can do to get you to heaven and that is trusting in the finished work of Jesus on the cross.
But isn’t the converse of that true?
If there is not a good deed you can do to get you there, then we must stay consistent. Going to hell cannot be from doing a bad deed, but because of rejection of the thing that Christ has done for us.
Once you start naming specific sins that send you to hell then you have just minimized and made less than it is, the transaction that Jesus covered for us on the cross between Him and His Father.
Let’s take a look at a person who committed suicide….Saul.
I Chronicles 10
3) The battle became heavy against Saul, and the archers overtook him; and he was wounded by the archers.
4) Then Saul said to his armor bearer, “Draw your sword and thrust me through with it, otherwise these uncircumcised will come and abuse me.” But his armor bearer would not, for he was greatly afraid. Therefore Saul took his sword and fell on it.
I think I would call that suicide
Now let’s see if Saul’s in heaven…. But let’s do it this way….
Do you think the prophet Samuel went to heaven?
My answer for the man who did not have a word fall to the ground wasted would be resounding YES!
Listen to his discussion with Saul at the witch of Endor’s occult shop. She tries to conjure up a ghost and is surprised when an apparition, it seems, of Samuel shows up and speaks to Saul.
I Samuel 28
11) And he said, “Bring up Samuel for me.”
12) When the woman saw Samuel, she cried out with a loud voice; and the woman spoke to Saul, saying, “Why have you deceived me? For you are Saul.”
13) The king said to her, “Do not be afraid; but what do you see?” And the woman said to Saul, “I see a divine being coming up out of the earth.”
14) He said to her, “What is his form?” And she said, “An old man is coming up, and he is wrapped with a robe.” And Saul knew that it was Samuel, and he bowed with his face to the ground and did homage.
15) Then Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?” And Saul answered, “I am greatly distressed; for the Philistines are waging war against me, and God has departed from me and no longer answers me, either through prophets or by dreams; therefore I have called you, that you may make known to me what I should do.”
16) Samuel said, “Why then do you ask me, since the Lord has departed from you and has become your adversary?
17) The Lord has done accordingly as He spoke through me; for the Lord has torn the kingdom out of your hand and given it to your neighbor, to David.
18) As you did not obey the Lord and did not execute His fierce wrath on Amalek, so the Lord has done this thing to you this day.
19) Moreover the Lord will also give over Israel along with you into the hands of the Philistines, therefore tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. Indeed the Lord will give over the army of Israel into the hands of the Philistines!”
Let me throw in this caveat real quick…some say that this is a demon spirit speaking. To me, nothing is further from the truth. A demon prophesying correctly? A demon speaking the truth about what has happened to Saul and what will happen? I don’t think so. That is so far a stretch that it has no merit and is just not good exegesis.
Now notice the ending of Samuel’s words to Saul….
“therefore tomorrow you and your sons will be with me.”
Saul would be where Samuel is…. Samuel is not in hell… And I don’t think Saul is either.
I believe Saul is a sad case for a Christian.
But even to live lower than God has for you does not mean you end up in hell.
You go back to how you were first saved.
Saul committed suicide when he knew he was dying on the battlefield.
What gets us to heaven? The saving work of Christ.
What sends us to hell? Rejecting the work of Christ.
Suicide is not THE sin that sends you to hell.
And neither is suicide an answer for you.
The motivation for NOT committing suicide can’t be “If I do this I will go to hell”. There is nothing consistent with the Bible and the character of God as a deterrent to a “hell sending sin”. The motivation is always what God can do and be for me. God has such a better life for you despite what you face today. The promise of God is not that you won’t face pain but He will always bring you through pain and you end up better than you were on the other side.
I like this statement:
“But in the end one needs more courage to live than to kill himself.” AC.
And God loves to give courage to live.