Question: "What is the Christian view of suicide? What does the Bible say about suicide?"

Answer: Suicide is a tragic reality in our fallen world. That people experience desperation to the point that they believe the best option is to end their own lives is heartbreaking. To lose a loved one to suicide prompts a range of questions and a special kind of grief. But the Bible offers hope—both to those who are considering suicide and to those who have been affected by the suicide of another.

To those who are desperate, please recognize that suicide is not the best option. In Christ, there is hope. Also recognize that you are not alone. In fact, the Bible speaks of many who felt deep despair in life. Solomon, in his pursuit of pleasure, reached the point where he “hated life” (Ecclesiastes 2:17). Elijah was fearful and depressed and yearned for death (1 Kings 19:4). Jonah was so angry at God that he wished to die (Jonah 4:8). Even the apostle Paul and his missionary companions at one point “were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself” (2 Corinthians 1:8).

But Solomon learned to “fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind” (Ecclesiastes 12:13). Elijah was comforted by an angel, allowed to rest, and given a new commission. Jonah received admonition and rebuke from God. Paul learned that, although the pressure he faced was beyond his ability to endure, the Lord can bear all things: “This happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead” (2 Corinthians 1:9).

You, too, can turn to God. Paul wrote, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ” (2 Corinthians 1:3–5). You can experience that same comfort in Jesus. If you have trusted in Jesus as your Savior, you are a child of God, you have the indwelling Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:3–14), and you have continual access to God in prayer.

Referring to Jesus, Hebrews 4:15–16 encourages, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Romans 8:15–17 says, “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.”

Cling to the promises of God. Go to Him in prayer (the book of Psalms might be particularly helpful). Reach out to brothers and sisters in Christ for encouragement. Believers are called to encourage one another and bear one another’s burdens (Ephesians 4:32; Galatians 6:2; 1 Thessalonians 5:14; Hebrews 10:24–25). Allow them to do so.

On a more theological note, recognize that God, as our Creator, is the only one who is to decide when and how a person should die. We should say with the psalmist, “My times are in your hands” (Psalm 31:15).

God is the giver of life. He gives, and He takes away (Job 1:21). Trust Him with your days. Remind yourself of His character and His authority. Other believers are helpful in reminding us of truth; ask them to remind you of truth.

Much of the above advice also applies to those who are grieving the loss of a loved one to suicide. Those who are grieving can remember that God is sovereign and each person’s days are in God’s hands. The bereaved can come to God with their grief and their questions (1 Peter 5:6–7). They can invite other believers to mourn with them (Romans 12:15).

For the sake of clarity, we should state that suicide is a sin against God and others. However, suicide does not determine a person’s eternal destiny. Our eternal destiny rests solely on God’s grace. Those who trust in Jesus Christ are fully forgiven of every sin, and they receive eternal life; those who reject Him remain condemned (John 3:16–18, 36; Ephesians 2:1–10).

If you are considering suicide, please seek help now. In the US, please call 988 or 1-800-273-8255, the national hotline. Or get yourself to a hospital or call 911. Or go alert someone in your home, apartment, or workplace, or wherever you are. Do whatever it takes to get help.

National Hopeline Network: 1-800-422-HOPE (4673)
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 988
To Write Love on Her Arms:
Suicide hotlines available in most countries: