Second Reformed Church

Friday, February 07, 2014

Review: "I Just Want to Die"



I would not recommend David Powlison’s book, I Just Want to Die: Replacing Suicidal Thoughts with Hope, for anyone who has thoughts of suicide.  Not because I disagree with much of what he says, but I found ti more inciting of suicide than helpful.

The one place I strongly disagree with him is on the first page when he argues that one should not commit suicide because God loves the reader and sent His Son to die for the reader (3).  The Scripture does not teach that Christ died for the sins of every persons indiscriminately, but for those whom He came to save.  (I do not intend to enter into a defense of Limited or Particular Atonement here.  The reader can look into this on his or her own.)

He continues by stating that self-murder is sin (3).

The reader matters to others (4).

The reader should just bring despair to Christ (7).

Using the life of David, the author argues that David went through everything the reader goes through and didn’t commit suicide, so... (8-17).

He ends by arguing that since Jesus rose from the dead, the reader can have joy and hope (18-19).

Even if the reader agrees with all of Powlison’s points, the reader may still say that there is an emotional draw towards suicide which none of these points answers.  Although it may just get better with time, I wouldn’t buy it.

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