Suicide. Far too many people are dying, physically, every year. Actually there seems to be more every year. Often we hear of a rash of deaths occurring in one area, or school, plus the press offers regular insights into the self-inflicted deaths of people of power, prestige and fame.

Put simply these people feel that life is not worth living and it's "time to checkout early". Meaningless. No point. Why am I here? The cries are endless. Popular groups and musicians oftentimes minister their messages of hopelessness directly to the masses, as do some television shows and movies.

The pop psychologists, commentators and counselors of this secular generation are the first to offer their tidbits of help -- especially following any publicized or prominent occurrences of suicide. According to them, there's so many reasons to live, so many things to give you meaning in life. And besides, they add, too many other people will be hurt by your premature passing. If their messages ring true, why do so many who have heard their ideas commit suicide themselves — sometimes within days or weeks of all this touted advice?

Let's take a moment to consider what the world is offering as reasons to live, or to give meaning in life.

Entertainment, including television and movies along with pop music and even video games, espouse the idea that the only real purpose in life is to have fun. If the fun stops, change channels. If you're not amused, buy a better video game (or machine!). If you can't be entertained you're definitely missing out. And get bored, no way! If we can't give you on the edge-of-your-seat action, drama, or laughter, by the minute — speed it up. Faster. A thrill a minute, anything less is boring and someone might just turn it off. Amusement parks function on this same concept. Even fast-food restaurants have long since assured us it's not worth having unless it's done "your way". The goal of continual pleasure is a reason for living, that much of the masses have adopted as their very own.

The quest for pleasure has an enhanced side as well. Just look at the ads, those people with the beer cans in hand are surely having more fun than others. Alcohol has become the happy drug of choice for the millions who have responded to the ads. And as for those bothersome statistics that show alcohol's role in everything from marital violence to traffic fatalities, the quick response is, "drink responsibly -- its only the excess that's the problem." Illegal drugs from heroin to crack cocaine have growing followings for those looking for faster and greater "highs". This too is seen as a route to ultimate pleasure. Marijuana cannot be left out, it's become the darling of the "need to legalize the pleasure" set. Why it really is quite harmless, just like alcohol, we're often told. Once again, those bothersome studies showing everything from smoking-like side effects (especially cancer) to brain deterioration (especially memory loss) are set aside... the effect and pursuit of pleasure are all that really matters in their eyes. When smoking has become a greater social ill in the eyes of the public than marijuana, the pursuit of pleasure has proven itself to be the ultimate goal.

"Just say no to drugs" now means "just say no to socially unacceptable drugs". For a fast growing segment of the public, the happy drugs of choice, are legal, over-the-counter or prescription medicines. Can't sleep because of the pressure, or problems, or guilt... take a pill. Feeling depressed for whatever reason — Prozac and it's take-off's to the rescue. For hosts of people these drugs have become the only way to lead a "successful happy life". It becomes no surprise when the children's versions of the same behavior/thought modification drugs have gained widespread acceptance. If they can make life better for adults, why not kids too? In a growing trend, siblings of those using such drugs have begun to borrow their medicines to experience it for themselves -- one would not want to miss out on the better feeling and life these chemical enhancements glowingly offer.

Pleasure seeking has been elevated (or lowered) to an art-form in the area of sex. To fill the insatiable lust of the eyes, sex is being used to sell everything from soap to cars. Nudity is a staple in movies of all genres, and blatantly sexual acts are no longer relegated to the low budget triple X sleaze films of yesterday (although they still have a wide following). And "why not?", society says. "Sex is a natural thing", "the body is beautiful", "it doesn't hurt to look", and other choice phrases have fueled the fire. "If it feels good, do it", has become the rule. Oh, but they'll add, "make sure you do it safely". With these ideas, everything from premarital and extramarital sex to homosexuality and bi-sexuality are now accepted as "alternative" lifestyles and choices. This too is held up as a reason for living.

While mentioning sex being used as a tool for selling, it quickly raises another publicized great reason for living: to make it big. That's right, live the American/Canadian dream! The goal is to acquire as much stuff as you possibly can. The bigger the house, the better. Faster or sportier autos. A big savings/investment portfolio. All this stuff is sure to make you happy — just listen to the ads. So to get these things, you're to work harder and longer and allow everything (and everyone) else to take a back seat. And if it might be awhile before you can afford all these things, that you're assured you need, they'll gladly give you credit. To not allow anything to stand in the way of immediate gratification from these goods is a cornerstone of this tenant for living. Some get slightly side-tracked, they find the work itself becomes the reason for living... the thrill of the deal, the pride of the job, the conquer-at-all-cost business philosophy. Sure the goods are nice perks for these people, but in reality just to do the job is all they need for a purpose.

Tied closely to the goal of having things is the never ending quest for knowledge. For many this is merely a stepping stone to the good jobs and prosperity that the other pursuits of happiness require. For some, it's the quest itself. Life's purpose for them is to understand, to dig deeper, to analyze, to know more. Theories on everything from the meaning of live to it's origins consume their time and thoughts... only a little more study, a little more research and they'll find the answers. This belief is held aloft as a higher reason for living by a modern and scientific world.

A few feel they have found a better reason for living. It's not money or things, it's people. Their entire reason for existence circulates around one or a few people. Sometimes a parent, often a spouse, and even children. For teens it especially may be a boyfriend or girlfriend. In living to please or care for their chosen focus of attention they have given themselves what they feel to be a noble reason for living. Oh, for sure, they have seen other people have relationship problems, those who have been spurned, betrayed, or used, but this will never happen to themselves because they've put their all into it.

All these reasons for living. All well promoted. This generation knows of them perhaps more than any before it. So why are the number of people committing suicide increasing as well? Obviously a lot of people have found these reasons to not be enough, to not be a real reason for living.

    Ecclesiastes 1:1-2
    The words of the Teacher, son of David, king in Jerusalem: "Meaningless! Meaningless!" says the Teacher. "Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless." (NIV)

King Solomon found life to be meaningless. Hosts of people today say there's no reason for living -- even many who don't attempt suicide. Using Solomon's search for purpose, we can find out the reason why so many end up in despair.

Early in Ecclesiastes (1:4) Solomon points to a universal problem of man, that we come and go while the earth remains and that life is for such a brief time (1:11). If life is so short in the big picture, what reason do I have for living in the big picture? Solomon set out on a life's journey to find a reason for living, something to give meaning to his life.

    Ecclesiastes 1:13, 16
    I devoted myself to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under heaven. What a heavy burden God has laid on men! (16) I thought to myself, "Look, I have grown and increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge." (NIV)

Solomon's first endeavor was to find meaning in learning. He set out to examine and to study everything around him. His conclusion is very telling, "For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief (1:18)". All the knowledge in the world cannot give purpose and, as well, examining the things others have done sheds no light on the reason for living that they have found (1:14). For those who would question Solomon's endeavors in knowledge, perhaps saying that he just wasn't smart enough, consider the gift he had been granted by God.

    2 Chronicles 1:7-10
    That night God appeared to Solomon and said to him, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you." Solomon answered God, "You have shown great kindness to David my father and have made me king in his place. Now, LORD God, let your promise to my father David be confirmed, for you have made me king over a people who are as numerous as the dust of the earth. Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?"

Unlike a lot of people's view of God, who see Him as being some Cosmic Santa Claus who will (or should) give whatever they ask, this passage is unique in Scriptures. God asked Solomon what He could give him... imagine how you would have responded. Solomon understanding the position of authority that God had placed him in, rightly asked for wisdom and understanding to lead the people. God granted that request and even more...


Suicide Statistics

Suicide is the third leading cause of death for 15 to 24 year olds, the fourth leading cause of death in ages 10 to 14, and the sixth leading cause of death for 5 to 10 year olds.

Suicide is the eighth leading cause of deaths (all ages combined), in the United States, claiming approximately three lives for every two lost to homicide (3:1.9)

White men age 65 and older are the most likely of all demographic groups to commit suicide, accounting for 20 percent of all cases.

The suicide rate has doubled since 1980 among children ages 10 to 14. From 1952 to 1996, rates among adolescents and young adults nearly tripled.

Average of 1 person every 17.2 minutes kill themselves.

Average of 1 elderly person (65+) every 1 hour and 31.8 minutes kill themselves.

Suicide is the 3rd ranking cause of death for young people after accidents and homicides.

For every female whose suicide attempt succeeds, 4.1 males will succeed. Yet there are 3 female attempts for every male attempt.

There are 25 attempted suicides (in all age ranges combined) for every one that succeeds. (100-200:1 for young and 4:1 for elderly)

It is estimated that each suicide intimately affects at least 6 other people.

Each year approximately 1/2 million Americans require emergency room treatment due to suicide attempts.

Firearms are the most common means of suicide, accounting for 59% of all suicide deaths.

Many deaths reported as homicides or accidents, where the individual may have intentionally put themselves in harm's way, are not included in suicide rates.

Statistics from the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Association of Suicidology, plus the 1997 National Suicide Statistics and Facts, and The Surgeon General's Call to Action To Prevent Suicide 1999

    2 Chronicles 1:11-12
    God said to Solomon, "Since this is your heart's desire and you have not asked for wealth, riches or honor, nor for the death of your enemies, and since you have not asked for a long life but for wisdom and knowledge to govern my people over whom I have made you king, therefore wisdom and knowledge will be given you. And I will also give you wealth, riches and honor, such as no king who was before you ever had and none after you will have." (NIV)

As for how much wisdom and discernment God gave him, consider this other passage of Scripture...

    I King 4:29-31
    God gave Solomon wisdom and very great insight, and a breadth of understanding as measureless as the sand on the seashore. Solomon's wisdom was greater than the wisdom of all the men of the East, and greater than all the wisdom of Egypt. He was wiser than any other man... (NIV)

The wisest man who ever lived had found that seeking purpose in learning was futile and so will everyone else who seeks purpose there as well. As is often common, when one quest fails, people turn to something else. So too did Solomon. His next stop was pleasure.

    Ecclesiastes 2:1a
    I thought in my heart, "Come now, I will test you with pleasure to find out what is good."

Surely living to have fun, to enjoy all the pleasures of life is a reason for living. For those that seek purpose in these pursuits, a common cry is that they lack the finances to really have the fun that will truly make them happy. "If I could just have more money, I could live life to the full". Our society's rich and famous become role-models for these pleasure seekers... surely they are having fun, they've got the means! Solomon surely had the means to find pleasure in anything and everything -- the wealth of an entire kingdom. But he still couldn't find purpose...

    Ecclesiastes 2:1b
    But that also proved to be meaningless. (NIV)

When conventional means of having fun lose their luster, the logical conclusion is to enhance them. Chemical highs. Drugs of choice. Perhaps the most common and sociably acceptable is the most pervasive -- alcohol. Solomon got there as well.

    Ecclesiastes 2:3
    I explored with my mind how to stimulate my body with wine while my mind was guiding me wisely, and how to take hold of folly, until I could see what good there is for the sons of men to do under heaven the few years of their lives. (NAS)

Chemical dependent "fun" is just as meaningless. In fact, these substances cloud the mind and pervert wisdom. When the high wears off, you need more and it takes more and more to get there. This is not, and can never be, a reason for living -- rather it binds the participant as a slave to a hopeless cause.

Solomon's quest for pleasure didn't end with wine. In fact the one area that likely consumed more of his time than any other was lust. We have surveyed teens and adults as to their reason for living and many teens (especially guys) have written "sex". No surprise. The message of our entertainment is that everyone is doing it -- and all the time -- so, of course, this has to be a good reason for living. Once again, Solomon had the means to out do everyone in this area as well.

    I Kings 11:1-3
    King Solomon, however, loved many foreign women besides Pharaoh's daughter-- Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians and Hittites. They were from nations about which the LORD had told the Israelites, "You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods." Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love. He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines, and his wives led him astray.

One thousand women, talk about living out the fantasy of many. Yet, even in the charade of marrying many of them, he couldn't find happiness. He wanted (and got) more. He was willing to compromise principles and beliefs to get them and to keep them happy. Solomon effectively became a slave to his passions (lusts). And the objects of his affections caused him problems all of his life (and not just because he had 1000 mothers-in-law!). All who would find pleasures in forbidden relationships also will suffer the consequences (whether in pre-marital, extra-marital, homosexual, or other forms, as talked about in scriptures. God designed sex as something pleasurable and desirable but only within the confines of marriage). This is not a reason for living, it's merely another form of bondage.

Solomon, who had great wealth, worked to amass even more. Here too he looked for purpose in his work and the things he could acquire.

    Ecclesiastes 2:4-9
    I undertook great projects: I built houses for myself and planted vineyards. I made gardens and parks and planted all kinds of fruit trees in them. I made reservoirs to water groves of flourishing trees. I bought male and female slaves and had other slaves who were born in my house. I also owned more herds and flocks than anyone in Jerusalem before me. I amassed silver and gold for myself, and the treasure of kings and provinces. I acquired men and women singers, and a harem as well-- the delights of the heart of man. I became greater by far than anyone in Jerusalem before me... (NIV)

Yes, Solomon had even acquired fame. He had fans that came from all over the known world (1 Kings 10:24). He was living out the dream of millions. Yet he had found no meaning...

    Ecclesiastes 2:10-11
    I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure. My heart took delight in all my work, and this was the reward for all my labor. Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun. (NIV)

It's here, after all these things and pursuits have failed, that people often give up hope. In fact, some despair of ever finding hope in these things before even trying. It's no wonder that so many consider life meaningless. It's into this void that one of the greatest deception of the devil shows up... Suicide. Just kill yourself, if life's not worth living, check out early. If meaning in life is found in pleasure, and the pleasure has stopped, why stay? If the pain's to great, stop it. These, and a host of similar reasons, push people towards an abrupt end.

In calling suicide "a deception", we need to establish who is the driving force behind it. It's the deceiver, the one who has been a liar and murderer from the beginning — the Devil.

    John 8:44
    You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father's desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. (NIV)

It may surprise you, but the Devil doesn't want followers. The Devil doesn't care if you follow him or not, he has only one threefold purpose. Jesus, himself, outlined the Devil's entire goal in this brief statement...

    John 10:10a
    The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy... (NIV)

Put simply the Devil merely wants to keep you away from finding real life in Jesus Christ. It doesn't matter if you worship the Devil, or follow any other deception, just don't follow Jesus and you go to destruction (Matthew 7:13-14). This is the Devil's goal for every human being. He doesn't care about you, he wants to destroy you. In fact the Devil knows that he has already been defeated (John 12:31, 1 John 3:8, John 16:11, Colossians 2:15, etc.), and that his final destination is in the eternal lake of fire (Revelation 20:10), so he's lashing out at God; attempting to destroy as much of God's creation as he can. The faster he can get you to die without trusting in Jesus, the faster he has carried out his purpose. If the Devil can get you to kill yourself, he's deceived you into doing his job. All thoughts of killing yourself is temptation from the pit of hell.

Solomon, mercifully, never came to the point of despairing of life. Though he rightly called all of these worldly pursuits, "meaningless", in regards to giving a person a reason for living — he did finally find the truth. It appears that Solomon wasted most of his life, in the futility of these common life causes, and that it was only late in his life that he found the real reason for living. His solution...

    Ecclesiastes 12:1
    Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and the years approach when you will say, "I find no pleasure in them"... (NIV)

Solomon spends the next few verses describing the effects of growing old, but don't miss the heart of what he discovered. The only reason for living is to worship and serve our Creator. He especially warns people to not wait until they are old to find this out, to not waste their lives in the pursuit of things that are meaningless. How Solomon ends his book is a far cry from the despair of his opening proclamations of meaninglessness...

    Ecclesiastes 12:13-14
    Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole [duty] of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil. (NIV)

The only real reason for living is found in knowing and follow God. Only in finding life in Jesus Christ can anyone have hope and purpose. It's no surprise that Jesus, after warning of the Devil's schemes, contrasts the life that is found in Himself.

    John 10:10
    The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (NIV)

Now that's real life and real purpose! For those who have found salvation in Jesus Christ (John 14:6), we have been given hope, hope that extends to eternity.

    Romans 15:13
    May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (NIV)

    Ephesians 1:18
    I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you... (NIV, keep on reading the verses following this one and also Ephesians 4:4)

    1 Corinthians 15:19
    If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men. (NIV)

Because our hope extends to eternity, even if we were to suffer for the cause of Christ, as did the apostle Paul, we still have hope — a goal, and a reason for living. Plus we have One who has promised to never leave or forsake us, to always be there to get us through the worst that life has to offer (Hebrews 13:5-6). Yes, we still live in a fallen world where the effects of sin run rampant, but we can rest in this assurance given to all who follow Him...

    Romans 8:28
    And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. (NAS)

For those that trust in Jesus, God is working out everything — even the bad things that happen — for good. What a hope knowing He is in control!

What if you still feel tempted to kill yourself, even after placing your faith and trust in Jesus Christ? It's like any other temptation. Seek help from the Lord to overcome it (1 John 5:4-5), to resist (James 4:7) or flee from it (2 Timothy 2:22).

    1 Corinthians 10:13
    No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. (NIV)

God knows how you feel. Jesus was tempted in every way like us, yet He remained perfect and sinless.

    Hebrews 4:15-16
    For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are-- yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (NIV)

    Hebrews 2:18
    Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted. (NIV)

"But wait!", some would say, "where was Jesus ever tempted to kill himself?" Consider the Devil's direct temptation of Jesus in the wilderness.

    Luke 4:9
    The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. "If you are the Son of God," he said, "throw yourself down from here. (NIV)

Jesus responded to the Devil's temptations (and misuse of scriptures) with the truth of scriptures (see Luke 4:10-12). As our example, He clearly new that His purpose was to serve God alone (see Luke 4:8). If that is truly our purpose for living, we too will seek His will in every area of our lives (John 14:15). Being tempted is not sin in itself, dwelling on it rather than making it subject to Christ is where it becomes sin.

    Romans 13:14
    Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature. (NIV)

    2 Corinthians 10:5b
    ... we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. (NIV)

Some final thoughts on suicide. Some wonder why there are those who kill others and then themselves. Most fall into two categories. If they have despaired of finding meaning in life or a reason for living -- having tried or wanted to try all the things of the world -- they blame others for standing in the way of their goal. In their minds, some individual, group (even everyone) is responsible for their inability to find a reason for living in their chosen course — not realizing that whatever they choose, apart from Jesus, is no reason at all. This sometimes is expressed in a manner that blames those individuals for all their perceived pain and problems... remember, the lie is, that if life is too painful (i.e. not enough pleasure) it's not worth living. The second reason why some of these suicidal people kill (especially family members or close friends) is that they believe they are sparing those individuals from the pain of living... Remember, they truly believe that life has no purpose or reason for living. Some are mad at God, for whatever reason, perhaps blaming Him for their problems. To them taking out their vengeance on other people is a way of getting back at God.

What's the solution? THE answer, for the multitudes that are still asking, "What reason to live?", is the one that all Christians should be taking to a world that is dying:


He's what reason to live!!!

Common questions asked about suicide...

Q: What reasons do people give for committing (or attempting to commit) suicide?
A: In no particular order...

  1. Family problems - including divorce, mental or physical abuse, feeling unwanted and unloved.

  2. Depression - which may be caused by a number of problems or perhaps one major event, perhaps even as a prolonged medical condition. Among teens a seemingly more trivial event may be elevated, for example: losing a boy friend or girl friend.
  3. Escape - To get away from problems and hassles of life. This is often related to a number of the more specific reasons in this list.
  4. Loss - The loss of someone near and dear, by death or otherwise. A friend moves away, a mother dies, a boyfriend breaks it off, leading a person to believe that life is not worth living without them.
  5. Guilt - Trying to escape the natural guilt which comes from sinful acts -- they feel they can't live with themselves over what they have done. Sometimes this happens when a person is caught (or feels that they will soon be caught) for whatever they did. In these cases it is as much trying to escape the consequences as it is the guilt.
  6. Attention - Expressed or otherwise, some are trying to get people to pay attention to them, to become the focus of attention, to get someone to care for them. This is perhaps one of the greatest reasons why people choose methods that work slowly (like overdosing on drugs) hoping that someone will intervene.
  7. Manipulation - This comes in the form of, "If you won't do [fill in the blank], I'll kill myself!"
  8. Revenge - The individual uses their death as a form of punishment on another. This can be as a means of getting back at someone for something they did or even for something that they wouldn't do.
  9. Impulsive - Just a quick impulsive act, not really thought out. This can be the Russian Roulette type of suicide.
  10. Twisted Love - "I love you so much, I'll kill myself." Sometimes related to trying to getting their attention or to manipulate them or getting revenge for their lack of interest.

Q: What are the effects of suicide?
A: Someone dies. And the effects of that act now impact others: Grief. Self incrimination (blame). Many family members and/or close friends carry a burden of guilt that they in some way failed. Often there can be a ripple effect, like throwing a rock in a pond, others may now consider suicide as a way out for themselves. When a person that kills themself is glowingly eulogized, prominently featured in press reports, and promised by counselors to "be in a better place", it can fuel ideas in others who may be considering this act (for whatever reason).

Q: How do people kill themselves?
A: Means such as shooting one's self, slashing wrists, hanging, jumping off a building or cliff, or drug overdoses, have all been sensationalized by media and are, in real life, frequently employed. (One web site, at the original time of writing, used to list hundreds of movies that featured suicide in their story lines. While the list is no longer available, it would have been sure to be much longer by now). With vehicle accidents being one of the greatest killers of teens, it should be noted that intentional 'accidents' are another often overlooked form of suicide. This may be the "flirt with death" approach, not fully wanting to die, but if it happens so be it. (Some take this approach because they feel that God won't blame them for 'an accident' but He would if they willfully killed themself). A related method, gaining popularity, is the "get someone else to do it approach." With this method, the person may commit a crime and incite a police officer to shoot them (perhaps by pointing an unloaded weapon at the officer).

Q: Are a lot of people committing suicide?
A: It varies by area and seems to have cycles of more or less. A statistic that is often quoted for North American teens gives an overall perspective... "Every 78 seconds a teenager attempts suicide. Every 90 minutes one succeeds." Other studies have reportedly shown that as many as 1 in 5 people have attempted suicide. Our own surveys (mostly teens) show about 1 in 5 having contemplated suicide. (See the box above for latest statistics).

Q: Is suicide sin?
A: When God said, "You shall not murder" in His ten commandments (Exodus 20:13), it covered murder of any human being including one's self. Yes murder of self is a sin. The Devil, himself, has been a murderer from the beginning (John 8:44). When God wouldn't allow Satan to kill Job (who had lost everything he owned, even his family, and lastly his health), I'm sure that Satan would have liked to have convinced him that life wasn't worth living, so Job would do what Satan was prevented from doing (Job 1:1-2:9).

Q: Do people that commit suicide go to heaven?
A: This question is asked for a number of reasons. Some want to hear that they will "go to a better place" if they choose to kill themselves. Even professing Christians, who are considering suicide, sometimes want to know if this choice would automatically send them to hell. It's important to emphasize that rejecting the message of Jesus Christ, refusing to put your faith and trust in Him assures you that you will face God's condemnation (John 3:18). Only those who have followed Jesus Christ, in faith, find eternal life (Romans 8:1). Those who have trusted in Jesus have found hope in Him — a reason for living (Psalms 62:5-6). In contrast, what message does committing suicide give? It tells people that the person had no hope, no reason for living. If the standard of Scriptures is any example — and it definitely should be! — suicide was evidence of the condition of someone's heart. Check all the cases of suicide in the Bible, from king Saul to Judas, and they were either at best (?) in rebellion against God or even possessed of Satan (Luke 22:3). That being said, if the person is a true believer (and only God knows - 2 Timothy 2:19), a sin cannot separate them from God (or condemn them again - Romans 8:1 again). In this regard, if a believer has committed a sin, perhaps told a lie, and is suddenly killed, that sin does not condemn them. Jesus died for their sins, past, present and future (1 Peter 3:18, Titus 2:14). For sure, had they lived they would certainly have been convicted of the sin by the Holy Spirit of Truth that lives within them (John 14:16-17; 16:13). All believers will be convicted of sin, leading them to repentance (2 Corinthians 7:10)! Some suicide may be a rash decision (as are many sins) — unfortunately an irreversible one. Some may have been helped to this point by mood altering prescription drugs to do something they, in their right mind, might never consider. The bottom line is, that only God sees the heart (1 Samuel 16:7). Yet one should never presume or use God's grace as an excuse to sin (Romans 6:1-2). This warning of Scripture alone should suffice...

    1 Corinthians 3:16-17
    Don't you know that you yourselves are God's temple and that God's Spirit lives in you? If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him; for God's temple is sacred, and you are that temple. (NIV)