2018-07-31 Death by Cookie.

Good Morning!

Here we are, the last day of July! Can you believe it? I have been taking some time off and finally feeling like I am not letting summer slip through my fingers. It is good. Judging from feedback I’ve received, I need to spend more time examining suicide and the believer. That will take some time to research, time that I don’t have at the moment. I need to dig through my old posts (which were likely before I published them on the website) because I covered this in significant detail at one time. So, stay tuned. In the meantime, I want you to follow an example to see if we can logically see how it is not only possible – but reality – that a believer may commit suicide yet not lose his/her salvation. I’ll go into detailed scripture at some other time in the near future.

Let’s start with the premise of suicide as sin. Fair enough? The bible appears to make a distinction between types of sin, with sexual sin as a doosie. 1 John 5:16 even says there is a type of sin that leads to death, but it doesn’t give any more detail than that. Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is the unforgiveable sin, but it is not clear what that is. One thing we do know is that denying Jesus is a big deal. A big, big deal.

In comes Peter. During Jesus’ farewell address, Peter gets all riled up. Jesus reacted by prophesizing that Peter will yet that night deny Jesus three times. Not once, but three times! And you know what? He did. It was clear he knew the implication of this because the bible records for us that he wept bitterly. Yet, even in this, Peter did not lose his salvation, did he? Some denominations would say that if Peter had died before he had repented of that, he certainly would have been frying in hell, never mind all his profession of faith before that sin. Never mind all the roads he had travelled with Jesus or miracles he had performed in His name. Too bad, so sad, Peter, me boy.

Or, could it be what we find as Paul explains in Romans 9?

Romans 9:15-16 For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God who has mercy.

Remember this from Jesus’ own lips?

John 15:16a You did not choose me, but I chose you

My friend David J. says something like this, “Do you know what our problem is? Our problem is that we have no idea of the magnitude of our sin.” When you really dig into this wisdom, you start to realize that it isn’t a select few categories of sin that are bad, they all are. In fact, one sin of mine that sticks out in my memory is one of eating a cookie. One single cookie. No big deal, right? Wrong. You see, the Holy Spirit was really convicting me of my gluttony and had me at a moment of truth with one single cookie. Yes, I was aware of all the possible freedom from my chains, but I ate the cookie. I chose the cookie over God. Think I’m exaggerating? Hardly. I had a taste of what Peter felt after denying Jesus in the courtyard.

My point is that it’s not the action that matters. What matters is whether or not you have been forgiven. If you are forgiven, then no sin can condemn you. None.

Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

Romans 8:31-39 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died – more than that, who was raised – who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long, we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

You see, that cookie represented death, and I knew it. Same with Peter’s denial. Same with a pistol in suicide. Sin consumes us and we choose death. Does it matter that I have since repented and the suicide guy doesn’t get that opportunity? We were both temporarily out of our minds. So was Peter. Insanity. Yet, it is not our sin that matters, it is whether or not we are “In Christ.” And that, my friends is what everything hinges upon.

Father, thank you so much for not allowing my salvation to depend upon me. There is no way I would have ever attained it. Certainly, there is no way I could ever keep it. As Jesus said, “Without me you can do nothing.” Thank you for that. Amen.

Copyright © 2018 Scott Powers

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