A reader asks, “My cousin had a rough time in his life and committed suicide. I’ve heard there is no salvation for someone who ‘plays God’ like that. Did he go to hell?”
“But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.” – 2 Peter 3:8
A long time ago, a police officer friend of mine was going through incredibly hard times. Then, when trying to surprise his fiancée one night, he came home early and found her sleeping with another man. In his fit of depression and rage, he drew his sidearm and shot himself, committing suicide.
This was really hard for me. He was my friend, a fellow police officer, and a much better Christian brother than what I was. I looked to him for answers and stability. I was crushed when he did this and I couldn’t get through the fact that he was in a veritable hell in his earthly life and now was in Hell for eternity. I asked God to help me make sense of it all. Shortly thereafter, God showed me a something while reading Second Peter.
God is beyond time. He’s not only God over the millennia, but He’s God over the millisecond as well.
God has made it abundantly clear through the Bible that He wills not the death of any sinner and wishes for all to come to salvation. During the moments between the gun going off and the bullet striking my friend, Jesus provided that last and final chance for repentance. The same would go for any situation, whether a suicide or a car wreck or whatever it might be. Jesus Christ is Lord over everything, including time. You’d better believe that God would do everything to allow the opportunity of salvation and repentance to His beloved children.
Also, we are sentenced to Hell for our sins. To sin, there are a few things to consider. It must pertain to a serious matter that we have knowledge of, and it must be done of our free will in light of that knowledge. To put it in other words, we must know that there is a rule against doing something, then we must willingly break that rule. This is important because if we are forced to do a bad thing, we should not be held liable for our actions due to no free will. It can definitely be argued that somebody who commits suicide in a fit of depression is surely not in their right mind and therefore would not have full understanding of their actions. There is no unpardonable sin except final impenitence; denying salvation from the Lord.
To close, in short, I believe that Jesus gives every opportunity to us to be saved. Your cousin, my friend, or anyone else would have that opportunity. We can be shown the door to salvation, but it is up to us to choose to walk through it. I’m not sure if my friend accepted that last opportunity for salvation, but I like to believe he did. I suppose Heaven may be filled with people we didn’t expect to see there.
Please have hope that in those final moments of your cousin’s suicide, he too fell into the arms of Jesus Christ, the Savior of all mankind.
God’s blessings to you.