“Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ?” 1 Corinthians 6:15a. Every saint is indwelt with the Holy Spirit of God. “And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.” Ephesians 4:30. After becoming a born again follower of Jesus Christ our body is no longer our own. That being the case, the last thing on an “in Christ” believer’s mind should be the destruction of the blood-purchased property of the Creator of the universe.
A believer who commits suicide has been convinced by Satan to follow his will instead of the will of God. This type of problem arises when we reach a place of despair. Despair is a vantage point that the enemy capitalizes on and builds a foothold, depression is usually the result. As a brother or sister continues down this destructive path, sooner or later they end up doing exactly what the enemy wants – they end their life and the enemy wins that battle. That one Christian witness has then been eliminated, which is Satan’s goal. Obviously, something has gone horribly wrong when a believer reaches this point.
Depression is probably the main motivator in suicide. Depression can be brought on as a result of loneliness, rejection, abuse, and a huge void where hope once resided. Depression can be dealt with, even avoided, with a loving faithful congregation of saints at one’s side.
There are many distractions in this life that are primarily of Satan and they are designed to promote his agenda not God’s. When those distractions become infused in the believer’s life they begin to lose interest in Christian fellowship and Bible study. Of course, the enemy is there to step in with whatever might be accepted as a useful substitute, something that will provide the wayward Christian with excitement and pleasure, howbeit ever so short lived.
After all these distractions have run their course, there’s the inevitable feeling of overwhelming worthlessness brought on by a sense of letting God down. The saint, when confronted with these feelings, becomes more and more depressed. This is why the writer of the book of Hebrews admonishes us to not forgo the fellowshipping together with our brothers and sisters in Christ. Christian fellowship is vital to restoring and keeping the fallen Christian soldier in a right relationship with his/her Creator.
In most cases the enemy’s antics are achieved subtly through a gradual change in the saint’s lifestyle. Satan has only one purpose when it comes to those who are no longer his. Steal, kill, and destroy. When the saint goes astray from God, hope becomes a fleeting memory. In their minds they see no avenue for restoring their relationship with God. Thus they become despondent, depressed. Suicidal.
This mindset doesn’t mean a person isn’t born again, just that his/her defenses have a breach in them which the enemy recognizes instantly. Without a loving family of believers at their side the enemy has them cold. We, the followers of Messiah Jesus, are in constant battles with the powers of darkness. Most of us know how to resist the enemy, but some believers will let down their guard after a battle thinking the enemy is at rest. But Satan never rests, he and his horde of malevolent followers wait in the darkness for any sign that a child of God is faltering, that’s when they once again pick up the battle.
Knowing Jesus as our Lord and Savior brings unimaginable joy and peace into our lives. Over time, some in Christ believers lose sight of that joy and their peace is disturbed, especially when adversity arises. As followers of Messiah Jesus we have been fitted with a big bull’s eye on our bodies that allows the enemy to focus his attacks with pinpoint accuracy. This supernatural evil works to separate us from God’s grace. That separation always comes from our own lack of preparedness. Allowing Satan’s emissaries to gain a foothold to separate us from our God, leads to more and more misery, eventually leading to despair. Neglecting God’s admonitions is the first step leading to the enemy’s attacks. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.” James 4:7-8b. This truth is not a onetime admonition, but a fulltime challenge.
So just how is the enemy able to build such a stronghold in the life of a saint so that that follower of Messiah Jesus would despair even of life? It’s quite simple really. The body of Christ is lacking. There is a lack of love and unity in the body that is so evident that even the world can see it. “From whom Jesus the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplies not just one person, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, makes increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” Ephesians 4:16. The whole body is not fitly joined together these days. Not every joint is doing its part in regards to edifying the body. Love, the crucial ingredient, is missing and the Ekklesia of Christ is suffering. The enemy destroys the wandering Christian as a wolf divides the sheep and picks off the weak and the lame.
“But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him. And if they were all one member, where were the body? But now are they many members, yet but one body… For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked: That there should be no schism (division) in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” 1 Corinthians 12:18-20, 24-27.
In the above verse the Apostle Paul tells us that God has tempered (joined) us together as one. Since we are all joined as one body, when one of us suffers the rest of us suffer as well. When a believer has done well it’s a reflection on the body, we rejoice as one. Suffer or rejoice, we do it together. When we remain committed to the wellbeing of one another there should be no room for despair. Suicide should not be thought of as a weakness in a brother or sister, but as a failure of the Ekklesia (the assembly of the called out) to embrace our brother or sister with limitless love so that when despondency raises its ugly head it can be immediately dealt a death blow.
Stop fellowship, stop Bible study and before long the enemy moves in like a wolf attacking with a vengeance. When we stop those two Christian essentials we become a major focus of the malevolent supernatural. Studying God’s word draws us closer to Him, but by neglecting His word we move ourselves away from Him. By fellowshipping I mean real fellowship with likeminded believers in our homes or in their homes…not merely attending services once or twice a week.
We need to be spending quality time together, we need to be listening to one another’s anxieties and problems and doing whatever is necessary to help alleviate these things from a brother or sister’s life. How do we do that? By the power that God has given each of us who have become His children – including diligent Bible study and fervent prayer. If we have nothing else we have love, the love of God that resides in each of us should be a shield and a very real deterrent to the darts thrown at us by the enemy. It would be much more difficult to despair of life when we are surrounded by the constant love of the brethren.
In many cases the building on the corner with the big cross out front fails horribly when it comes to huddling together under the wings of fellowship. Our life as Christians is to be a fulltime lifestyle filled with the joy of the Lord. Joy becomes diminished when we become part-time Christians. It’s then that a plethora of problems begin to beset the saint’s life. Since we are the body of Christ we should be much more fitly joined together so let’s start acting like it. As one part of the body goes through trials and tribulations the rest of the body brings comfort and nourishment – we need each other. A common faith brings us together, and a love that cannot be explained or surpassed cements us as one. Therefore no saint should ever get to a point of such despair that they would even contemplate, let alone follow through with, the taking of their own life.
Let me begin my next statement with the following qualifier; in no way am I condoning suicide as I provide the following truths. That said, I’ll now try and help those who have lost loved ones as the result of suicide to find peace. Once we are born again, we can never lose our status as a child of God. “…ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.” Ephesians 1:13b-14. God seals His Holy Spirit in each person as they become born again. This action, we’re told, is a down payment to our eventual inheritance, which is the Kingdom of God. This occurs at the instant that we first believe on the one who God sent (Jesus the Christ). Paul clears up any misgivings concerning our losing what God has given us. “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39. The separation from God occurs at death for the Christ rejecter. For the born again child of the Most High God there is no separation from Him. Never. It can’t happen, and it won’t happen. Not even death by our own hand can accomplish separation from God.
Many believe that suicide is the one sin that will void the salvation of the saint. Actually that’s impossible. Salvation once received is forever. Some will refer to suicide as the unpardonable sin since there is no possible way to repent and ask for forgiveness after the deed is done. First of all there is no such thing as an unpardonable sin since all sin was covered by the blood of Messiah Jesus at the cross. Secondly the born again have already been forgiven when we said yes to Jesus Christ by placing our faith and trust in Him, and Him alone, for salvation. Thirdly the only thing that Jesus said would not be forgiven was when He referred to the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. He was speaking of the Nation of Israel who had just rejected Him. Today there is no such thing as an unpardonable sin since Jesus paid the price in full for all sin past, present, and future. It’s not sin that condemns but unbelief. It’s not the loss of hope, it’s not depression, and it’s not suicide that condemns. It’s the rejection of God’s free gift for salvation, Jesus the Christ.
Remember, caring for one another like the early Ekklesia is the key; caring, loving, doing, being a constant part of one another’s life. Just as our own hand is an extension of arm, we are an extension of each other in Christ. Therefore loving one another will facilitate a much more harmonious relationship and stave off any thoughts of suicide.
Worse than destroying the Temple of God would be to destroy the body while it belongs to Satan. The god of this world has dominion over the body until we stop rejecting the Son of God. Certainly destroying the body while it remains the domain of Satan would be an unpardonable mistake. Death by suicide will always remain on earth as an escape for the lost of this world, as they have no hope. When that does occur they will have set in stone their eternal destination, and it is not Heaven. We, the children of God, have too much to live for, and much work to do in regards to those lost folks. The lost need us, if only as a reminder that there is a loving God who has His eyes fixed on them. Take away the saints and suicide will increase exponentially. That day is coming – soon.