What Does the Bible Say About Suicidal Death? KJV

When struggling with suicidal thoughts and tendencies, many feel alone. It’s more common than we realise. This isn’t new. The issue dates back to biblical times. What the bible say about suicidal death?

Suicide is murder in the Bible, which is what it is. Only God decides when and how a person should die. With the psalmist, “My times are in your hands” (Psalm 31:15).

Take a look at several questions about Christians and suicide in the Bible, study seven stories about suicide in the Bible, and learn six hope-filled promises from Scripture. We get into the nitty-gritty of the Bible and suicide in this post.

Death and the Bible

God’s word does not mention suicide, but it has much to say about it.

Biblical occurrences

Five Old Testament suicides are recorded:

  1. In Judges 9:54, Abimelech pleaded with his armor bearer to kill him so his death wouldn’t be credited to the woman who dropped the millstone on his head.
  2. In order not to be abused further by the Philistines, King Saul killed himself (1 Samuel 31:4).
  3. The armor-bearer of Saul also committed suicide (1 Samuel 31:5).
  4. When Absalom stopped following Ahithophel’s advice (2 Samuel 17:23), he hanged himself.
  5. A failed rebellion led Zimri to set himself on fire (1 Kings 16:18).

As well, Jonah is considered to have attempted suicide (Jonah 1:11-15). In Judges 16:29–30, Samson destroys Philistine’s temple and kills himself and all who are with him. Others see this as an act of bravery rather than suicide.

Judas’ suicide is the only clear example of suicide in the New Testament (Matthew 27:3–10). Acts 16:27–28 tells of how Paul prevented the suicide of the Philippian jailer.

It is thought that Jesus’ death was a kind of suicide, since he stated: “I lay down my life of my own accord” (John 10:18). Since he was God’s Son, he could only be killed with his permission, no matter what the means.

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As for those who rethought suicide, there was great restoration and a sense of purpose according to scriptures. If understood, at every point of depression and failure in life, a sense of purpose is born. That my brethren, is a blink to a new life. Make the most of it.

Biblical principles

It is clear from God’s word that life is sacred:

  • As it is written in Exodus 20:13, “You shall not murder”.
  • My heavens and my earth are witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Deuteronomy 30:19 says “Choose life for yourself and your children”.
  • “The Lord gave and the Lord took away.” (Job 1:21).
  • ‘Do you know that God has given you the Holy Spirit, who dwells in you?’ At a price, you were bought. Honor God with your bodies” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).
  • Everyone feeds and cares for their own body, just as Christ does for the church (Ephesians 5:29).

Christians may have to give their lives to serve Christ and his kingdom (Mark 8:34–36; John 13:37; Philippians 1:21–22). The act of martyrdom is usually not considered suicide.

In our postmodern culture, we claim that absolute truth does not exist (that is an absolute truth claim). Nontheistic or relativistic societies make arguing for life and against suicide difficult. So we’re told, if we are our own “higher power,” we can live our lives however we want.

God retains ownership over our lives if he is the Lord of all. Only he can determine when our service is complete, when our purpose is achieved. The Bible makes it clear that our lives belong to their Creator, not to us.

Murder

Suicide is murder in the Bible, which is what it is. Only God decides when and how a person should die. With the psalmist, “My times are in your hands” (Psalm 31:15).

Taking Ownership

Life comes from God. Job 1:21 says He gives and takes away. Suicide is ungodly because it rejects God’s gift of life. The right to end one’s own life belongs to God, not to man or woman.

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Not Just You

In Scripture, some people felt deep despair. Towards the end of his life, Solomon “hated life” (Ecclesiastes 2:17). In 1 Kings 19:4, Elijah yearned for death out of fear and depression. In Jonah 4:8, Jonah longed to die from anger towards God. Paul and his missionary companions “were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, to the point of despairing of life itself” (2 Corinthians 1:8).

None of these men committed suicide. “Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind” (Ecclesiastes 12:13) Solomon added. During his rest, Elijah was comforted by an angel. Jonah was admonished and rebuked by God. Although he was unable to handle the stress, Paul learned that God, who raises the dead, could: “This happened so we would not depend on ourselves but on God.” (2 Corinthians 1:19).

It is Sin

Suicide is a sin according to the Bible. The “greatest” sin is not sin that determines a person’s eternal destiny-it is no worse than other evils. The impact of suicide is obvious on those left behind. Suicide leaves painful scars. God grant His grace to everyone facing trials today (Psalm 67:1). It is the promise of Romans 10:13 that “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Three Essential Promises from the Bible

Here are three promises God makes to every suffering person.

1). You Are Loved and God Wants to Help.

Elijah was in despair when he prayed, “It is enough; now, I pray, take away my life” (1 Kings 19:4 ESV). The Lord provided him with physical, spiritual, and emotional sustenance. Jeremiah cried out, “Cursed be the day my life began! The Lord sustained his prophet (Jeremiah 20:14).

A promise in Scripture states: “The Lord rescues those who are crushed in spirit and close to the brokenhearted” (Psalm 34:18). Despite indescribable challenges (2 Corinthians 11:23–28), Paul declared, “Our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory we will receive” (Romans 8:18).

Jesus understands. His experience matches ours (Hebrews 4:15). On the cross, he cried, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46). It’s time for him to help.

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Human physicians are one of the most important ways the Great Physician heals. Get in touch with a professional counselor as soon as possible. You will receive God’s grace through them.

2). You Are Inestimable, as Are Those You Know.

Our lives can seem unworthy when we suffer from depression and life crises. The reverse is true. Jesus died for everyone on earth (Romans 5:8).

C. S. Lewis preached the “Weight of Glory” sermon at Oxford University In 1941. He said, “There are no ordinary people.” It’s true that you have never talked to a mere mortal before. As for nations, cultures, arts, and civilisations, all these are mortal, and their lives are akin to those of gnats to us” (his emphasis is mine).

Moreover, Lewis adds: “Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbour is the holiest object you will ever come into contact with in your lifetime.” And you are no different.

3). With God, You Can “Dwell on The Heights.”

According to Paul, he could “make every thought obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5). The Holy Spirit empowered him to do this (Ephesians 5:18).

A rich store of wisdom, knowledge, and salvation can be found in God (Isaiah 33:6). People who walk with him “will dwell on the heights” (v. 16).

As for those who rethought suicide, there was great restoration and a sense of purpose according to scriptures. If understood, at every point of depression and failure in life, a sense of purpose is born. That my brethren, is a blink to a new life. Make the most of it.

Your Father allows you to dwell on the heights. God’s promise and invitation.

Today, will you accept?

Alternatively

If you are considering suicide, please seek help now. Call 1-800-273-8255, the national hotline, get yourself to a hospital if you can, call 911, go alert someone in your home, apartment, or workplace, or wherever you are, and do whatever it takes to get help.

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