September is National Suicide Prevention Month. Tragically suicide has reached historic numbers influenced by COVID. The National Alliance on Mental Illness has seen a 65% increase in calls since March
No one is immune from suicidal thoughts. No one is ruling out mental illness or physical components. We are made of spirit and flesh – each interrelate and connect. Yet God holds us responsible for our beliefs and behaviors. We can’t excuse sin. But let’s be clear, while suicide is a grievous sin it is not as some claim unforgiveable. People ask, “Can a Christian commit suicide?” Answer, “Can a Christian sin?” John MacArthur has written, “Suicide is a grave sin … but it can be forgiven like any other sin.
What should one do if they have suicidal thoughts? They must realize their hope is in Christ, 1 Pet 1:3. One contemplating suicide has lost all hope. True hope is rooted in truth not in sentimentality. Ps 130:5, I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in his word I hope. God’s Word provides hope. So does the Body of Christ. If someone speaks with you, listen well – and urge them to see their doctor. Be a good listener and pray. Biblical counseling is available.
God is Redeemer. He wants to redeem one’s suffering. His plan is life – not death. Suicide has a horizontal perspective – what about me? We must go vertical – develop a God-ward focus. We make it our goal to please him, 2 Cor 5:9.