by Tad Lindley
I hate writing about suicide, but we keep losing so many fine young people, and I keep hearing the response, “At least they are not hurting anymore.” That is a horrible lie, that only leads more people to believe that killing yourself is a legitimate way to deal with your pain. I write this not to condemn those who have already committed suicide, but to reach out to those who are still alive and being seduced by suicidal ideations.
Their FB posts can’t save you
When you read Facebook posts and someone dies, according to the comments they’re always “better off now”, they’re always “in a better place”, they’re always saved. The numbers on that simply don’t make sense, because if you read the Bible then you know that Jesus sure made it sound like not everybody gets saved.
Here’s an example: “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it.” (Luke 7:13-14 NLT) Maybe all the lost people don’t have Facebook accounts and only the saved people do, but that can’t be right.
Suicide ≠ saved
When a person takes their own life, they are taking the timing out of the hands of God. To do so is to say to God in an irreversible way, “God, forget you, my problems are too big for you to solve and so I hereby take my life into my own hands!” The Bible is quite clear that without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6). When you pull the plug on your own life and step out into eternity without Jesus, your testimony is a flat out disbelief in Romans 8:28 which tells us that no matter how bad it is, our God is able to make it work out in the end: And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
Not in a better place
No matter how bad your current situation is, Hell is not a better place. Jesus described it as a place where the fire never goes out (Mark 9:43), in verse 48 he goes on to add the fact that the maggots never die in that place. If we had a clear picture of hell, it would put our earthly trials and tribulations into perspective. Trust me, every soul in hell would gladly trade what they have for an eternity of our worst days in this life.
Actually the pain is a lot worse: true story
Please read the following description that Jesus gave of a real man who is in hell right now and has been for centuries: “There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.
“The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’
“But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set in place, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’
He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my family, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’
“Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’
“‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’
“He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’” (Luke 16:19-31 NIV)
Read it closely. The man in hell is in constant torment. The maddening thing is that it was his choices that put him there. He fully understands that and owns it.
What they are crying from hell right now
If we could tune our radios into hell and listen closely, we would hear amidst the agonizing cries for water, the cries of warning. The man in hell was begging Abraham to send someone to warn his brothers so that they might not follow after him. It is that cry that compels me to write to those who are on the brink of giving up. There is no problem that God cannot either deliver you from or bring you through, and there is nothing that a premature exit from this life will make better for you. If you are contemplating making a wrong decision, stop. Call on Jesus for help. Reach out to someone you trust for help. Your eternity depends on it.
Tad Lindley is a minister at the United Pentecostal Church in Bethel, AK.