Monday, November 12, 2012

Suicide.... Lost forever



Tibetan protests against Chinese rule intensified around the opening of a pivotal Communist Party congress as three teenage monks and two other Tibetans set themselves on fire over two days, activists reported on 3rd November 2012.

Four of the self-immolations took place on Wednesday and were followed by a fifth involving a nomad in western Qinghai on Thursday. Since March 2011, dozens of ethnic Tibetans have self-immolated in ethnically Tibetan areas to protest what activists say is China's heavy-handed rule over the region. Such protests have become more frequent in recent weeks, apparently aimed at the party's week long conference to unveil the country's new leadership that opened Thursday.

"These protests are aimed at sending the next generation of China's unelected regime a clear signal that Tibetans will continue to fight for their freedom despite China's efforts to suppress and intimidate them," Free Tibet director Stephanie Brigden said in a statement.

Free Tibet also said that the three monks, at ages 15 and 16, were the youngest to self-immolate. They set fire to themselves Wednesday afternoon outside a police office in southwest Sichuan province calling for freedom for Tibet and the return of their spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, the group said, adding it was the first documented case of a triple self-immolation.

The youngest monk, identified as 15-year-old Dorjee, died at the scene and his companions, Samdup and Dorjee Kyab, both 16, were taken to a hospital by security forces and their conditions were unknown, Free Tibet said.  


(A Tibetan in flames after self-immolating at a protest ahead of Chinese President Hu Jintao’s visit to India, in New Delhi, March 26, 2012 (Manish Swarup / AP Photos)

Although Tibetans have immolated themselves in years past, modern technology now allows gruesome video snippets of gasoline-drenched human fireballs—some of them shouting “Long live Tibet” or defiantly waving raised fists—to proliferate online, and possibly to inspire copy-cat acts of self-annihilation. 

Committing suicide is a last-resort measure in any society, but it’s seen as especially extreme for Tibetan Buddhists. Because their religion reveres all living beings, many Tibetans believe those who take their own lives will not be reincarnated. That’s a grim fate for religious devotees who aspire to be reborn, again and again, in more enlightened forms. “But what else can people do? We don’t have guns. We don’t want to harm other human beings. Yet we can’t stand to see our religion and culture being crushed,” lamented one Tibetan man from Lhasa, who requested anonymity because he feared China’s massive security crackdown, which has affected parts of four provincial areas.


Meet the enemy

The Devil is real. Scripture reveals that he leads an army of fallen angels and is prideful enough to think he can gain victory over God. By definition, a satanic attack is a deliberate assault upon an individual, which is designed to cause spiritual, physical, material, or emotional harm. Satan desires to thwart the Lord's purpose in believers' lives, to rob them of joy and peace, and ultimately to deny God the worship He receives through yielded followers.

It happened.......

What a gruesome tragedy. Young Tibetans who are barely 15 years old ending  their lives by self-Immolation. Wait a minute. Hold your thoughts and remember that God did not send them into this world to end their lives. He had a purpose.  He had a Plan. He pursues. He breaks through your hardness. He gets your attention. He reminds you that He loves you. He kindles a longing in your heart for the days when you walked with Him. He had a purpose driven life  for you.  But they blew it away. Listened to the  lies of the enemy and took this daring step of  embracing death.

I always pray very intensely whenever I answer a question like this, because I know someone may be reading this who is contemplating suicide - and I don't want to say anything that might encourage them to take that tragic final step. God loves them, and He wants to surround them with His love and give them hope. And He will, as they open their lives to Jesus Christ.

According to the Bible, suicide is not what determines whether a person gains entrance into heaven. If an unsaved person commits suicide, he has done nothing but “expedite” his journey to hell. However, that person who committed suicide will ultimately be in hell for rejecting salvation through Christ, not because he committed suicide. What does the Bible say about a Christian who commits suicide? The Bible teaches that from the moment we truly believe in Christ, we are guaranteed eternal life (John 3:16). According to the Bible, Christians can know beyond any doubt that they possess eternal life (1 John 5:13). Nothing can separate a Christian from God’s love (Romans 8:38-39). If no “created thing” can separate a Christian from God’s love, and even a Christian who commits suicide is a “created thing,” then not even suicide can separate a Christian from God’s love. Jesus died for all of our sins, and if a true Christian, in a time of spiritual attack and weakness, commits suicide, that would still be a sin covered by the blood of Christ.

Suicide is still a serious sin against God. According to the Bible, suicide is murder; it is always wrong. Serious doubts could be raised about the genuineness of faith of anyone who claimed to be a Christian yet committed suicide. There is no circumstance that can justify someone, especially a Christian, taking his/her own life. Christians are called to live their lives for God, and the decision on when to die is God’s and God’s alone. Although it is not describing suicide, 1 Corinthians 3:15 is probably a good description of what happens to a Christian who commits suicide: “He himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.”

Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 13:5 “examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith.” We are to test ourselves to be sure that Jesus is truly our Savior and the Holy Spirit is truly in us. If He is, we can in no way lose the salvation Christ has obtained for us (Romans 8:38-39). If He's not, then perhaps the Holy Spirit is convicting us of sin and prompting us to repent and be reconciled to God through Christ. The assurance of our salvation comes from the knowledge that once we are in Christ, we are eternally secure. But genuine saving faith is evidenced by its works (James 2:14-26) and the fruit of the Spirit within us (Galatians 5:22). The lack of this evidence can sometimes be the cause of our doubts.

Even when a believer is faithless, God is faithful (2 Timothy 2:13). God wants us to be sure and confident of our salvation (Romans 8:38-39; 1 John 5:13). God promises that everyone who believes in Jesus Christ will be saved (John 3:16; Romans 10:9-10). We have all sinned and fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23). As a result, we deserve death and an eternity apart from God (Romans 6:23). But God loved us enough to die in our place, taking the punishment that we deserved (Romans 5:8). As a result, all those who believe are saved and eternally secure.

Have you placed your faith in Christ? If the answer is yes, then throw away your doubts and trust God. If you know Jesus as your Savior, you are saved without a doubt! If the answer is no, then believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved!

Blessings,

Raj Kosaraju

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