Questions answered by Rev. K. Munday

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Rev. E. Anderson

What principles are to be observed when interpreting the Scriptures to prevent fanatical and unbalanced viewpoints?

Here are some helpful guide lines:

1. Investigate to whom the Scripture was first addressed and their particular condition and environment at the time.
2. Accept Bible statements literally except when this is obviously impossible.
3. Always interpret texts in relation to the contexts.
4. Build no doctrines on isolated verses but take the consensus of the whole Bible on the subject concerned.
 
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Can you throw any light on the ultimate state of a Christian who commits suicide?

Two points are usually raised in connection with suicide. First, does it come under the category of murder? If so, then it states that no murderer has eternal life – 1 John 3: 15., but I would think that murder motivated by hatred, whereas suicide is usually motivated by utter despair. ..and a coroner often finds the act to have been committed ‘whilst the balance of mind was disturbed’ and God is not less than men.

The other point raised is that suicide precludes any opportunity of repentance, but one must ask if suicides are the only Christians to die suddenly with unconfessed sin!

The gift of life is an important trust, and to prematurely terminate it must incur some spiritual loss. Our human existence is but a period of probation for eternity, and even despair experienced by these unfortunate folk might have been turned to ultimate good.

We cannot pronounce with finality on the question, but I would not think that suicide automatically cancels salvation.

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