Suicide

Question

Since Judas (the betrayer) killed himself, did he go to heaven or to hell? I have always heard that the unforgivable sin is suicide. But in the Gospels I read that the unforgivable sin was to mock the holy spirit.

Answer

Just as you thought, suicide is not the unforgivable sin -- blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is (Luke 12:10). At various times, some people have argued that suicide sends you to hell because you don't have the opportunity to repent of it. However, failure to repent of a particular sin before you die will not send you to hell. Christians are kept securely in Christ; they do not slip out of and into salvation as they sin and repent.

On the other hand, Judas himself probably is in hell. In Mark 14:21 Jesus says it would have been better for Judas never to have been born, which does not seem easy to reconcile with the idea that Judas is in heaven. In John 17:12, speaking to God, Jesus adds that he kept the other disciples "in your name that you have given me," but that he did not keep Judas in this way, with the result that Judas, the son of perdition, was lost. Not having been kept in the divine name is probably equivalent to never having been saved. The Greek word for "perdition" means "destruction" or "hell," so that Judas was the "son of hell," which would also seem to indicate that Judas is in hell.

Answer by Ra McLaughlin

Ra McLaughlin is Vice President of Finance and Administration at Third Millennium Ministries.