What Does the Bible Say About..? Logo

What Does the Bible Say About..A Mass for the Dead?

What is the best thing to do if a person commits suicide, because we donít know where is their soul? Do we need to have a mass? We want to make sure that he or she is in heaven even after committing suicide.

Answer

Only God can judge whether a suicide will be forgiven or not. Most theologists take the view that it is a sin that canít be repented of, since a dead person canít repent. Whether the salvation that comes through Jesus Christ covers an unrepentant is debated, and I donít know the answer.

Once the individual has committed suicide, there is nothing you can do for them. Matthew 25:31-46 indicates that we will be judged on the deeds we do here on earth. Once we are no longer living on earth, we can do nothing to change our judgement. Nor is there any indication in the Bible that anyone left on earth can do anything to change that judgement. Saying a mass, praying, and anything else we can do appears to be useless in changing whether a dead person will be judged for heaven or hell. Ezekiel 18 indicates that God will not judge a man based on anotherís good works.

That there is no way for one who is judged for eternal punishment to go from there to eternity with God is further pointed out by Jesus. In the story of the rich man and Lazarus, Abraham tells the rich man who is in torment, ďAnd beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.Ē (Luke 16:26) Contrary to Catholic doctrine, the Bible says there is no moving from one place to the other after death, and no in-between (purgatory).