It is a sad fact that some Christians have committed suicide. Adding to the tragedy is the false teaching that committing suicide automatically consigns one to hell. Many believe that a Christian who commits suicide will not be saved. This teaching is not supported in the Bible.
Scripture teaches that, from the moment we truly believe in Christ, we are guaranteed eternal life (John 3:16). According to the Bible, Christians can know beyond any doubt that they possess eternal life (1 John 5:13). Nothing can separate a Christian from God’s love (Romans 8:38–39). No “created thing” can separate a Christian from God’s love, and even a Christian who commits suicide is a “created thing”; therefore, not even suicide can separate a Christian from God’s love. Jesus died for all of our sins, and if a true Christian, in a time of spiritual attack and weakness, commits suicide, his sin is still covered by the blood of Christ.
According to the Bible, suicide is not what determines whether a person gains entrance into heaven. If an unsaved person commits suicide, he has done nothing but “expedite” his journey to hell. However, that person who committed suicide will ultimately be in hell for rejecting salvation through Christ, not because he committed suicide (see John 3:18). We should also point out, however, that no one truly knows what was happening in a person’s heart the moment he or she died. Some people have “deathbed conversions” and accept Christ in the moments before death. It is possible that a suicide could have a last-second change of heart and cry out for God’s mercy. We leave such judgments to God (1 Samuel 16:7). Will Jesus welcome home a believer who died at her own hands? I believe he will, tenderly and lovingly. My biblical basis? It is the hope-giving promise of Romans 8:32, that neither life nor death can separate the believer from the love of God in Christ Jesus.
How can I trust in this promise and then deny its comfort to people who doubly grieve for brothers, sisters, fathers, and mothers who in horrible moments of despair decided to end their lives? I believe that Jesus died not only for the sins of us all but for all of our sins, including the forgotten ones, including suicide.
ASSISTED SUICIDE: Helping a person to end his or her life by request in order to end suffering. (Rarely prosecuted and only lawful in Switzerland where the reasons must be altruistic.)
PHYSICIAN-ASSISTED SUICIDE: Medical doctor helping patient to die by prescribing a lethal overdose. Patient can chose whether to drink it. (Lawful only in Oregon, Switzerland, Netherlands and Belgium.)
EUTHANASIA: A broad, generic term meaning 'help with a good death.'
VOLUNTARY EUTHANASIA: Death by lethal injection by doctor when requested by patient. (Only lawful in Belgium and the Netherlands for the terminally or hopelessly ill.)
NON-VOLUNTARY EUTHANASIA: Using powerful drugs, doctor ends life of suffering, dying patient who is comatose. Illegal, but happens all the time, discreetly, in the interest of compassion.
TERMINAL SEDATION: Upon patient request, doctor puts patient into deep sleep with medications, during which time the patient dies either of the underlying illness or starvation/dehydration. Widely practiced and generally accepted as ethical and lawful.
MERCY KILLING: Taking the life of another person in the belief that this is a compassionate act because the ill person is unable to do so. Unlawful.