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“What Should I Do When Tempted to Commit Suicide?”

   Suicide is the taboo subject in America, the “whisper” word of the English language. Statistics show that over 39,000 Americans take their lives each year. Every minute someone somewhere tries to take his/her life. Every 13 minutes someone somewhere succeeds in taking his/her life. America was shocked on August 11, 2014, to hear that Robin Williams, the popular, successful movie and television star had committed suicide. Williams was a comedy genius who loved children and gave unselfishly of his time to charity and entertaining our military. However, he was addicted to alcohol and drugs and suffered devastating dark times of depression. He applied a PERMANENT SOLUTION TO A TEMPORARY PROBLEM.

Characteristics of Suicide. When a person takes his/her life, they leave an average of 5 survivors. Suicide attempts outnumber deaths, 13 to 1. Suicide peak months are December to May. 50,000+ youth attempt suicide each year and 5,000+ succeed. Men are 70% successful—they choose shooting or jumping. Women are 30% successful—they do not use violent methods that disfigure the body. City people are more likely than rural people. Single, divorced, and widowed are more likely than married people. Divorced people are 5 times more likely. Doctors. Lawyers, and psychiatrists have a suicide rate that is 3 times higher than the general public. White people more likely than black people. Protestants are more likely than Catholic—Jews are the least likely religious group. Letters are left 25% of the time and are often detailed and helpful—tell how to handle bills and other matters. The highest suicide risk is a white, middle-aged male with medical and marital problems.  Most Christians see suicide as a sin but some see it as the “unpardonable sin.” While suicide is unpardonable (because the deceased person cannot ask for forgiveness), suicide is not the biblical “unpardonable” sin.

Cases of Suicide in the Bible. There are six cases of suicide in God’s Word. (1) Samson – Judges 16:29-30. His suicide came as he used his great strength to kill as many enemies as he could in his death. (2-3) Saul and his Armor Bearer—1 Sam.31:4-5. No hope. Did not want to be captured and mocked by enemies. (4) Ahithophel – 2 Sam.17:2-3. A counselor whose pride was wounded – went home and ended his life. (5) Zimri—1 Kings 16:18—the loss of his kingdom overwhelmed.  (6) Judas—Matt.27:5—felt the enormous guilt of betraying Jesus and could not face family, friends, disciples, or enemies. Each of the biblical accounts has a story within itself.

Causes of Suicide.  While each case is unique, there are at least 10 main causes of suicide:  (1) Sustaining Serious Loss—loss of a significant relationship (spouse,family, job)—such a devoted attachment that they were unable to cope with the detatchment. (2) Reunion—after death, a survivor wants to rejoin the departed loved one. (3) Loss of Perspective—events loom so large everything else is obscured—they cannot see their total universe (hopes, families, friends, future, cause of Christ). (4) Revenge—people want to make the survivors suffer by their death. (5) Guilt Ridden—feel like they deserve punishment for a misdeed. (6) Gain Sympathy—after feeling rejection or unworthiness, a person commits suicide to shock his/her friends. (7) Humanistic View of Life—today’s value system strips people of dignity and value by telling them there is no God, no Heaven, no Hell, no Judgment-life becomes worthless. (8) Stress—great pressures to produce and meet deadlines cause people to go over the edge. (9) Loneliness—almost all suicide victims feel alone and uncared for at the time of death. (10) Satan—his job is to rob, kill, and destroy—he whispered to Job to take his life; he whispered to the Philippian jailer to take his life; he entered into Judas; and he told Jesus to cast Himself down from the Temple. IF YOU EVER EVEN THINK OF TAKING YOUR LIFE—YOU KNOW SATAN PUT IT THERE!!  Not God!!

Cure for Suicide. God is the giver of life. He wants you to “have life and have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). In that verse, we see two Masters and two Missions. Satan would kill you, but Jesus wants you to live eternally and abundantly. What are the cures for suicide?

  1. Get Off Pills – Drugs – Alcohol. Let God be your peace and strength. Drugs have kickbacks.

  2. Handle Rejection in a Spiritual Way. Failure is not the end of the world. Learn & keep going.

  3. Build Your Life Around God. Do not “idolize” anyone or anything. Put God first—Mat.6:33

  4. Set Realistic, Godly Goals. What does God want to accomplish in your life? Let your main goal be to do everything for His glory (1 Cor.10:31). Make your ways pleasing to Him (Prov.16:7)

  5. Straighten Out Your Home. Where does someone turn when he/she do not have a happy Christian home or a Bible believing church. Many suicides have been prevented by the love, compassion, and acceptance from a happy home.

  6. Be Satisfied with Aging. Don’t let Satan discourage you as you get older. Stay healthy. Read the Bible and keep your mind fit. Be positive.

  7. Be Involved with People. Remember, the majority of suicides came as people felt lonely and isolated. Be faithful to Sunday School and Church. Invest in peoples’ lives.

  8. Remember God’s Love for You. People who self-destruct develop the mind set that no one cares for them. Not true! At the time of suicide, a person’s self-worth is at an all-time low—remember, our self-worth is not based on society’s standards or what people think—but on what God thinks about us. John 3:16. Romans 5:8

  9. Be Sensitive for Peoples’ Cries for Help. Experts feel 80% of suicides could have been prevented. These symptoms: depression, withdrawal, giving things away, talking about wills, sleeplessness, too much sleep, frustration, despair. Let us watch over people—Heb. 3:13.

  10. Know that God Is in Charge. All all-powerful, all-wise, all loving God is in charge of your life. Do not let “tunnel vision” take over—where you look at circumstances through a long, dark tunnel. There is light at the other end. God can work everything out for good.

The mother of a wonderful family lay very sick. She told her family she was dying. She said, “I’ve shown you for 40 years how a Christian ought to live. Now I’m going to show you how to die.”

Dying grace will come when we need it. Until then, let us live for the Lord and cherish His abundant life!  

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