Suicide reates are higher than ever, but there is hope for the hopeless.
Welcome to waive the Master. It’s great to have you with us today on the program. We’re going to be talking about a devastating epidemic that has taken the United States of America by storm. It’s something of course that has existed for a very long time. But recently it has increased in its seriousness. And it’s been given more attention because some very high profile people have become a part of it. Of course, we’re talking today about suicide. Mark Ray. This is something that has been extremely grievous to us because we have not only heard about what’s been going on across the country. We’ve heard about the major high profile celebrities that have committed suicide, but we’ve encountered a lot of people who have told us personally that they’ve attempted it or are susceptible to it. And we know people that have committed it personally. So why such a massive increase. Now I’ll read some statistics in a minute. But I want you guys to just speak to us about that. What’s going on in our country? What do you think of that? Yeah, great. You want to go, Mark, I was waiting for you. But you know, when somebody hits a place where they see no other option that the final exit, that final door is suicide. You have to begin to think, what are they going through? Right? I mean, loneliness leads to depression. Depression when left unchecked will ultimately lead to suicide. And that’s a that’s a crazy, terrible position of situation to be in. If anybody comes to me. And they were to say that they’re in that state, that state of mental hostility, I have to take it serious. It doesn’t matter if somebody says it in jest. I mean, you don’t know that position and what is going on in this world, right? I mean when somebody comes to a place where they’re willing to take their own life, um, it’s an epidemic. I mean, it really is that there’s, there’s no words for it. You know, my heart breaks. I can’t empathize because I’ve never been in a situation, a position like that, but I certainly can sympathize when celebrities to the person who lives next door to the homeless, they’re all beginning to head in this direction. And when you begin to say there is no afterlife, Well then what point is there to just live or to die? You know, I think one of the reasons is there’s such an emphasis in our nation on the pursuit of happiness. It’s part of a constitutional right of every individual to pursue happiness. And what I like to ask students is what’s the most important thing in your life is the pursuit of personal happiness. And they almost always say, yes, it is. I said there’s something more important than happiness to you. You know what it is and they say, I don’t know. So when you’re walking along the street and look down you’ll find a wallet with $10,000 in it, in someone’s name, What you gonna do, this is gonna make you happy, this is 10 grand. So I go to the police. So there’s something more important to you than happiness. It’s righteousness you want to do that, which is right. And so when we have our chief end as the pursuit of happiness and we’re living for happiness if their happiness leaves and we’ve got nothing to live for and uh life is filled with red season Lions Dens, Jesus said that sufficient today as the evil there are, there’s problems every day. I mean this morning I woke up and my wife, I was down that was that was a major red sox trial. That was horrific. But what you gotta do is realize that because of that, because of these storms that continually hit us. If you’ve got to have your house built on rock, Jesus said, whoever hears my sayings and obey them are like into a wise man who built his house upon the rock. And when the rains, the Senate floods came, the winds blew, it didn’t fall. And then he said, those who don’t hear my saying, so those are here my sayings and don’t obey them like a foolish man, built his house on sand and we have a whole nation, a generation that have built their house outside of the sayings of christ so when the storms come, they go, they go down, you know that that’s that’s a great example. You know when you begin to think about Elijah and Jeremiah, they were extremely lonely, they were overwhelmed in their loneliness, jesus and paul who were also lonely. They were not overwhelmed in that Elijah and Jeremiah, they began to wallow in their loneliness and they became self inspected and they didn’t go outside of themselves paul and jesus, they went outside of themselves away from the man in the mirror and they put their gaze upward and the only cure to this to loneliness, to depression, to suicide is to look outside of ourselves and put our eyes upon him who made our soul. That’s the solution. Yeah, absolutely. And again I mentioned the statistics earlier, 1.4 million people. This is these are statistics from just a couple of years ago, 1.4 million people in that one given year attempted to commit suicide. I mean you think about that, I think of a stadium sometimes, you know, maybe seats 30 40,000 people multiply that all the way up to one point four million people attempting to commit suicide. And 129 of them are successful Every day. 129 people, you know, I every day I got a local college a couple times a day and I’ve made a habit recently of saying to those, I share the gospel with do you get suicidal thoughts and they almost always go like how did you know, you know, I thought I was alone in this. I say it’s very common. I said you don’t I say you don’t have a mental disease because that’s what modern psychology says. If you get depressed, you have a mental disease and you need psycho, psychedelic drugs or whatever psychological stuff. No, you’re not you’re not mental, you’re you’re an intelligent thinking person. Because life is depressing. It’s full of disease, pain, suffering and death. What’s the news tonight? If you want to cheer yourself up, does the exact opposite because it’s a reflection of what’s happening throughout the whole world. So life is depressing. If you get depressed, you’re normal. And the thing you should get depressed about is the appointment you’ve got with death. You know, most people count here uh the years upwards I count them downwards. You know, I’m on zero at the moment I turned 71 0. So every minute I’m thankful for, I’m grateful for and I want to use not for my own personal happiness but for God’s glory. So when my my wifi goes down, I don’t tear my hair out. God forbid that I would do that I rejoice because all things are working together for good to those that love God and are called according to his purpose and I have hope in my death. If I don’t have hope in my death and in the knowledge that God is working everything red season Lions dens out for my good then I’m of all men most miserable and that’s what’s happening to this world there a godless world that have forsaken the way of God. And uh, our teenagers are students have been taught nothing but the stupidity of evolution, the product of an explosion in space and nothing but a talking primate with no reason or rhyme to exist, no purpose. And so when those trials come the red season, lions dens come suicide is an option. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. And when you are brainwashed into thinking that life is meaningless and you live that way, we want to talk great in a few moments about a couple of resources we’ve produced as a ministry to help those that are in that place where they’re thinking about suicide. But speaking of college campuses that you told us, you just went on and you go on often we want to watch a video of Ray speaking to a young man who attempted to commit suicide more than once. Have you ever had a near death experience? Yes. I have twice. Twice. What happened? Uh, suicide attempt? You attempted suicide? Why is that? I just don’t see, I just didn’t see at the time anything going on. I hadn’t like no motivation, nothing to help me feel a part of this world. What do you fear most in life being left alone? Um, after all that hard work and just coming home to nothing. You just, you know, you’re just, they’re empty. Like the shadow feeling. I’m going to ask you a very personal question. Be honest with me? I think you can because you’ve already been honest. Are you fearful of death? No. You know after attempted suicide twice I wouldn’t be scared of Mhm. Death in my face again. Let me ask you this question. Do you have hope in your death? Do you believe in an afterlife? I do not believe in an afterlife. I believe you just you come to your thing in the world and you know, you just your body just helps contribute to the earth. You know where that would leave me in a feeling of hopelessness and helplessness In the face of death. It’s like standing on a freeway and there’s an 18 wheeler heading for you and there’s nothing you can do about it. That’s what life is my revelation at the age of about 20 years old. So I grew old prematurely, I had my own business at 20 years old. As much money as I could want own home, own wife. We’ve made a child travel, done everything I wanted to do with them. And what is next and why is everyone waiting around to die? It was like we’re in a big holding cell, big blue roof, you know, good lighting, good air conditioning, but we’re waiting around to die to be executed. And that made life futile for me with all my happiness. I could see it was a happiness bubble. That’s something that death was gonna burst. No one talked about death. Do you believe what the bible says? I do not. I threw all those through all these past years. Religion has been nothing but war for land and and up until this point, it’s still war. Like there’s no solution that countries in the Middle East have come to, you know, it’s just back and forth. You heard the saying that religions caused more wars than anything else? Yes, yes, it’s not true. Encyclopedia of Wars is only 8% of wars were religious by nature. On two thirds of those eight Were Islamic wars. The rest were the other 92% of wars were secular wars. It was like the First World War, political, Second World War, political, 55 million deaths. Second World War Vietnam war, korean war, the war in Iraq nothing to do with religion, It’s all to do with politics and land. So the problem isn’t, and you know who the greatest killers of all our it’s atheists, you’ve got pol pot, you’ve got Mayo, you’ve got Lenin and Stalin responsible for 100 million deaths through atheistic communism. So the problem isn’t communism or religion, the problem is mankind, he starts wars. If we find life on another planet, you know what’s going to happen, we’ll start a war and kill them all off. It’s just human nature. We’re gonna come back to kevin in a little bit, but Ray, I want you to speak a little bit to some of the things he said one of the most common things that we hear And Kevin said it is I don’t want to be alone or I feel alone. He talked about coming home to nothing and I know that you have heard this response so much. You even wrote a booklet that we make available for people to give out. Yeah it’s a little booklet that I take with me. And um I give to people that say they have suicidal thoughts of depression. Just call you not alone. It’s a very simple little booklet but it brings out principles that we’ve talked about today and it’s essential to talk about this. You know it’s amazing how human beings are unique. We don’t like being alone. You know when I’m alone at home I work at home alone and home office at home. I talked to the Lord a lot and as well as my dog because I know I’m not alone and uh and the way they punish prisoners is to put them in solitary confinement because some people go insane if they’re left alone. And so it’s we have a I often think about modern technology how when I was a kid we didn’t have ipads, iphones when we went through doors we had to open it don’t open by themselves. We have to get up to change the channel on the Tv. Yes. Yes absolutely we have to get up. That was my family’s remote controlled by the T. V. Turn it turn it down and everything is so convenient. Everything is so wonderful instant news, instant entertainment instant this instant that and it just leaves everyone empty and alone alone. And I just got to say something here Mark if you don’t mind when we die we die alone every one of us except if we’re christians we die with the hand in the hand of jesus. He was arms surrounded by you know he was surrounded by his family when he died he wasn’t he was surrounded by his family while he was still alive but when he died he died alone and you don’t want to die alone you want to die with your hand in the hand of jesus. You know and it’s been said you know one with God is always in the majority. You know the first negative judgment we see in scripture was when uh All right because his name you never forget knows when it was not good for man to be alone. God God said it’s not good for man to be alone. He recognizes this right Jesus was continually alone. He was continually retracting away from the people to be alone. But but you you hit it right. I mean the whole idea of even when you’re alone a christian is never alone because where can we go to flee away from God right where there’s nowhere you cannot go where God is not already at. And when you have the mindset that God is always with you, you will never be lonely though you will be alone. And then reminds me of the song that our friend john ericsson taught us saying for a movie Friends of ours produced called Alone Yet Not Alone. And it was about a crisis situation and yet they were alone. But God was with them. And that’s the big part of our hope as christians right? And jesus said I will never leave you nor forsake you. I will be with you always even unto the end of the year. And the other thing is I like to say to people that just commit their lives to the Lord. I say, look this will be as real to you as you are with God. If you’re a fake, if you leave here and look at pornography and sell take the heart what that guy said, you’re just gonna dissipate the truth of what we’ve done, jesus said, well we looked at whoever hears my sayings and keeps them And I can do a wise man who built his house on the rock. And he said in John 1421, if you keep saying should prove your love for him and he will manifest himself to you. So if you’re ever alone, don’t treat it as though you’re alone. Talk to the Lord, he talks to us through his word, fellowship of the Holy Spirit. And we talked to him. And so loneliness shouldn’t be a part of a Christian walk. Yeah. You know one of the things Ray that you touched on with kevin was the whole issue of wars being caused by religion or Christianity or what have you and you did a great job answering that. However, it’s hard sometimes for people to separate that one example is always point to the crusades. Now we understand certain things in our hearts and minds about that, but that looks like look at christians are just killing people. So how do you deal with that when people touch on that, that that sense of hypocrisy, like look at what’s going on? You know with that? When your actions don’t match what is supposed to be? Well, let me say this. If I can interject, you know, we know why murder is wrong because God says you shall not murder. But within an atheistic worldview, within that position, you cannot tell me why war is wrong. Why murder is wrong? Why the crusades are wrong? Because you have to appeal to an ultimate authority in order to make that statement as a christian. We open up God’s word. Next is 20 says you shall not murder, you shall not kill, but with an atheist, why is it wrong? Why do you have an objection against the crusades? If there is no right or wrong, you have a problem? Well, we go back friends and time and we find that our very own. Mr Mark Spence dealt with this issue of what, what do you do when actions don’t match? What shouldn’t be? Mm hmm. So are you saying that if I believe in God it is okay for me to kill, it’s okay for me to have, if I believe in christ, I can do terrible things. But I have to believe that because I’m such a terrible person, jesus christ will take me this individual rob. He said, hey, as long as I believe in God, I believe that jesus christ died on the cross. I even might believe that he died for the sins of all of humanity. As long as I believe that now do I have a free ticket to go do basically whatever I want to do. Is that correct? Yes. No, that’s not it. And here’s why If I truly truly believe that what Jesus Christ did 2000 years ago, I am now going to appropriate the gift. What is the gift? The gift is everlasting life. It’s like this. You’re guilty of some heinous crime here in civil law. There’s a $50,000 fine that you have to pay. You don’t have to pennies to rub together. The judge looks at you and says, Hey, Men within my laws, I have the ability to put you inside prison for 80 years. Anything to say before I pass justice upon you and you say have mercy on me. No, no, that’s not the case. I’m going to give you justice. And right then some of you don’t even know, steps up and pays the fine for you. And he looks over at you and he says, here’s the exchange. I’m gonna pay your fine $50,000. But now basically you’re gonna come work for me. I own a bagel shop. You come do this, you’re gonna use bagels. If he really if you really believe that what this individual did for you, you will appropriate the gift and do what he’s required what he’s requesting. I’m not out here to gain God’s acceptance. I’m not here to try to be approved by God. I don’t I’m not doing it. Why am I doing that? I hope here’s the day. I don’t do it to gain God’s acceptance. I am already accepted. It’s like my little boy. Noah, my five year old, my seven year old he comes into the house and he goes, he goes, Dad, I really just want to be your son. I’m going to do the laundry. Today. Go son. You’re my son. Even if you don’t do the laundry, I love you all the same. I love it when you obey me. But that doesn’t change reality. You’re always my son. The same mystery with God for as many as receive the free gift of everlasting life and become a child of God has given them the right to be a child of God, john one verse 12 I have the ability to be a child of God simply because of what jesus christ did 2000 years ago. Mark, I loved that baby video the opening briefing. I saw your stroller in the background there, Wow, that’s the last 12 years ago, 12 years ago. It was wonderful. That message never changes. It’s always amen. And Huntington Beach doesn’t change much either same buildings in the background. You know Mark. Uh I want to point something out that you did just as kind of a side note for those watching who are curious about tactics and open air preaching. I noticed that you repeated his question and brought clarification, why why do you do that? Three reasons. Right. 1st. 1st of all, I don’t want to mischaracterize their position. I don’t want to start with an answer to a question they never asked often during Q and A. My wife will say you had a really great answer to a question that wasn’t asked right? So I want to stay on cue. I want to say, is this your question? Secondly, I want to demonstrate that I’m listening to you? I am hearing what you’re saying. And thirdly, there’s people on the outskirts that won’t always be able to hear the question. So I want to make sure that everybody knows the direction in which we’re heading. So I follow those three areas. I don’t want to mischaracterize what you’re saying. I want to demonstrate that I’m listening and I want everybody to listen so therefore they can hear the question and then be ready for the answers. Should you have repeated the easiest question is the question that you totally misunderstood everything that I was saying. Ray real quick on this. One of the things touched on is hey, if God forgives, if God is merciful, why can’t we just go out and send all we want? Oh because God’s gonna judge hypocrites, He’s gonna judge pretenders. And I think scripture makes it very clear. And one thing that’s real is my heart is when I see jesus re proving the hypocrites he had special jalapeno for those Pharisees. You know, why weren’t you hypocrites? And uh and so anyone who’s worried about hypocrites needs to read john chapter, Sorry romans chapter two were opened. It says a few judge those who do such things and do them yourself, how can you escape the judgment of God? So God’s gonna judge hypocrites that pretenders and if you don’t like hypocrites, you won’t want to spend eternity in hell with them. And if you’re born again and you have the spirit of God abiding in you. You hate sin. Like he hates sin. You don’t want to do it. Alright. Friends. Well I’m glad to say that raised conversation with our friend kevin continue. One of the reasons I believe so many are committing suicide is hopelessness. Nothing will make you want to commit suicide? Like hopelessness of having no purpose for existence. Being told by education system that you’re nothing but a primate. You have no worth. You’re just part of an explosion that happened in space. The christian message is that you created in the image of God, you have worth because you’re not like a beast. You’re not like an animal. You’re made in God’s image with a sense of justice and righteousness and truth with the ability to appreciate music and enjoy color and beauty and flowers and all these things that are around us. We’re not beasts. The book of hebrews says the whole of humanity through the fear of death or all their lifetime subject to bondage. In other words, the fear of death haunts every single one of us and that’s what drives many to suicide. It’s better to find solace in death and left in futility while alive. Um Do you know what death is? No, I don’t you know what the bible says It is? No, I don’t think it’s wages. Did you know that? It says the wages of sin is death. In other words, death is payment by God for sin. Do you think you’re bad enough to receive death as punishment from God from my past experience? Yes. I mean, you’ve done things that are really bad that I regret? Yes. Have you lied and stolen? Yes. You’re a lying thief? Yes. Have you used God’s name in vain. Yes. Do you realize what you’re doing when you do that? God gave you life? I gave you eyes to see with ears to hear good music taste buds to enjoy good food. He lavished his kindness upon you. And you have used his name as a cuss word. Would you use your mother’s name as a cuss word? I have just broken the fifth commandment by dishonoring your mother boy. You’ve used your mother’s name as a cuss word. Yes. When you use God’s name as a cuss word, you are blasphemous name. You’re dishonoring it and death sentence on the old testament for blasphemy. One to go, jesus said, If you look at a woman and lust for her, you commit adultery with her in your heart. Have you ever looked at a woman with lust? Yes. You looked at pornography? Yes. You had sex before marriage. Yes. So, kevin, I’m not judging you, but you’ve just told me you’re a lying thief. A blasphemer. A fornicator, and an adulterer, adulterer at heart. So, here’s the big question. If God judges you by the 10 commandments on Judgment Day, you’re going to be innocent or guilty, guilty Heaven or hell. Hello. How does that concern you? No, I just accept it as it is. So, you see the 18 wheeler heading for you and you don’t want to get out of its way? You’re just gonna accept it? No, you don’t. You want to get out of its way If there was a way past death, you’ve got to search for it. You’ve got to find it. Don’t don’t accept it. Death is a punishment. But you know, the bible says God is rich of the same person says the wages of sin is death. Listen to what it says. The wages of sin is death. But the gift of God is eternal life through jesus christ Our Lord, God can give you eternal life as a free gift. No, I’ve just been through two months of terrible pain. Were they kidney stone And I wouldn’t want that pain on my worst enemy. They say it’s worse. Worse than childbirth and I can attest it is you don’t want to end up in hell where there’s there’s no relief from suffering will be damned forever by God. Now tell me what did God do for guilty sinners? So we wouldn’t have to go to hell. Yeah, give him a second chance. I don’t know when jesus died on the cross? For the sin of the world. Do you understand what happened when he died on the cross? No, I know. Well, you and I broke God’s law the 10 commandments, jesus paid the fine. That’s what happened on the cross. That’s why he cried out. It is finished. In other words, the debt has been paid and God can legally dismiss your case forgive your sins, granny. Everlasting life as a free gift commute your death sentence all because of what jesus did through his death and resurrection. What you have to do to find everlasting life is repent of your sins. Don’t play the hypocrite and say I’m a christian and lie and steal and fornicating blaspheme and local pornography that’s playing the hypocrite. It’s like empty religion. You don’t want to do that. You want to be genuine. And the second thing you do is trust in jesus. So kevin, you’ve been very patient with me. I’ve gone on and on and on, but it’s because I love you and I care about you and I’ve said some hard things, but the reason I said the hard things is because I really want you to be saved. I don’t want to end up in hell. I want you to find everlasting life through trusting in jesus. Does it make sense what I’m saying? Yes, you’re going to think seriously about this. Yes, that’s a little booklet called what’s it called? It’s so hot of the press. I forgot the name of it. You’re not alone and it’s about the subject of depression and suicide and I just grabbed a bundle from home from our ministry, brought him home to bring around here to give to someone. And the first person I meet is someone who’s attempted suicide twice, kevin, God loves you. He cares about you, proved his love for you by christ dying on the cross. So I’m so thrilled you’re going to take this seriously and think about it and I’m going to give you some more literature. So thank you very much appreciate your listening. Thank you Ray. I loved your tenderness with kevin. You know, that can really make all the difference in the world of just someone seeing that another person cares that removes that kind of sense of being alone. But it wasn’t just, hey, I’m a nice guy. You brought him the gospel. Yeah, we care because the love of christ dwells within us. It’s easy to love people when you’re a christian. It just comes naturally well supernaturally. And it can be expressed in your tone and we’ve got to realize how important tone is because that’s what people here Absolutely. Mark Ray touched on the fact that Kevin was made in the image of God. How important is that in the whole discussion regarding suicide? Well, you’re not your own, we’ve been bought with a price what lies before you is a stewardship from the owner. I say it over and over again, but it’s something I daily remind myself of and it’s something that I share with people all the time because God created you. He also created you with a purpose. You have the ability to choose or reject God’s plan for your life. It’s really that simple and we need to remind people Absolutely. And friends if you’re watching today and you’re struggling with suicide. We would urge you to get help. We’ve produced a movie called Exit. In that movie. I talked about my own testimony and how I was suicidal before I came to christ and you’ll hear a lot of hope in that. So check it out and again for those of you who know the Lord, we have that book that you can give out. You’re not alone because you’re not the gospel is real God is real, eternity is coming. So believer, make sure you reach out to the loss with love and tenderness. Like you saw Ray do. Thanks for joining us. See you next time on way of The Master. We hope this episode of Wave, The Master has inspired you to share the message of eternal life. You can watch our award winning movies such as the Atheist Delusion freely on our website or you’ll also find articles, videos, and audio messages, as well as books, dvds, gospel tracts and other resources to help you share your faith biblically and effectively make sure to visit Living Waters dot com today