The Sun newspaper, in its publication on Saturday, May 4, 2019, reported the story of a man, who committed suicide, when his wife told him that he was not the father of her new-born baby. The couple had no child for the fourteen years of their marriage. The lady alleged that her husband did not agree with her for them to seek medical help, believing rather that God would give them children, when it pleased Him.
That was why, according to the randy lady, she lived with uncertainty, not knowing whether the problem was from her or from her spouse. When a man toasted her, she fell to him easily, and was having good time with him, according to her. Within three months, she was pregnant. The Sun newspaper detailed the excitement of her husband, when she told him. A happy man, he went with her through her pregnancy period – the pains and the joy – and was there in the labour room when the baby arrived. It was reported that he painted everywhere red during the naming ceremony of the baby. It was a great loss and shame, when about two months after, Aunty telephoned him from a safe place that he was not the father of her baby. That was it. In consequence, he cut short his life!
There is no doubt that the pain inflicted on him by his wife was excessive. There was no doubt also that the bad news would soon spread, which would add also to his excruciating pain, but should he have hanged himself? In 1985, during the ‘Greater Lagos for Christ’ crusade organized by the Gospel and Pentecostal Churches, as well as the Graduate Fellowship, held at the then National Stadium, Lagos, Dr. Uma Ukpai was the Guest Speaker. A few days before the programme, he lost his two children and a housemaid in an accident. Many people did not expect him to honour our invitation but he did, putting God above his pain!
Opening his message, he asked, “What is the worst thing to happen to a man? Is it the death of his parents? Is it the death of his spouse? Is it the death of his children?” He went on mentioning evil things that could befall a man. Though, a Christian of thirteen years, I could not volunteer any answer within. After a long pause, he answered his question. “The worst thing to happen to a man is to die without a personal knowledge of Jesus”. I woke up from my slumber, realizing that he was dead right. “Yes, dying without Jesus,” I reaffirmed to myself, “is the worst thing to happen to me”.
A few weeks ago, I published in this column, ‘If not God’. I narrated my experience on March 20, 2019, when I had an accident. My wife told my doctor that I was unconscious for a while and I argued that I was not. The doctor laughed at me. Think about it, I had passed on and did not know. In that space of time, I did not remember Ify, my dear wife. I did not remember my lovely children and my grandchildren, who always excited me. I did not remember the food I love best – fufu! I did not remember the new pair of suit and the beautiful black shoe my daughters gave me. I had planned to wear them during my 41st wedding anniversary coming up a few days later. I always felt good, each time I saw them.
These are some of those things that compelled the Lord Jesus to ask,”What will it profit a man, if he gained the whole world and loses his soul?” All the great things about my family and things listed above have no eternal perspective. It is my relationship with the Lord Jesus that matters. That was where Uncle missed it. By committing suicide, he had asserted, by implication, that he valued material things more than the spiritual. That was a man, reputed to have rejected medical help and leaned on God’s provision, but who could not wait for God’s direction, when his wife confessed to him that he was not the father of her son! What a contradiction!
Killing himself is also the manifestation of faithlessness in God. The fate of a man, who committed suicide, is the same for a murderer. May I make bold to say that there is no place God tells us in His Word not to seek medical help when the need arises. Many expectant wives have complained that their husbands do not cooperate with them in seeking medical treatment, though some of the men cooperate with bottles of beer! This is not right. It is not sinful, however, for anybody to depend absolutely on God for the solution of his needs. “Be it done unto you,“ the Scripture says, “according to your faith”. In that case, Uncle should not have killed himself.
Aunty acted wickedly, by living with her husband and was sleeping with another man! If her spouse was against medical help for her conception, who did she report to? She claimed that she was surprised that he thought the child was his, when, he knew that they never had sex all through the period of her pregnancy. Who do we ask for the confirmation since Uncle is dead? Was it not evil for her to have allowed her husband to be paying her antenatal and postnatal bills, when she was aware that he was not the father of her baby? Why did she allow him to stay with her in the labour room during the delivery of her baby, when the baby is not his?
She might have thought that she was clever enough to deceive her husband. She still has questions to answer before God. Those, who are doing what she has done, should repent from it. Her conduct is a grievous sin before God. There is no doubt that she killed him literally. Her lover was reputed to have said that he would not marry her. If he did, what is the guarantee that she would not treat him the same way? What she needed most is not marrying but repenting from her sin and pleading with God for mercy and forgiveness. God is ever ready to forgive a repentant sinner.
The father of her son has nothing to rejoice. His argument that he was sleeping with her because he did not know that she was married does not hold water. Is he licensed to be sleeping with every woman, so long as she is not married? No man is allowed to sleep with any woman, whether she is married or not. There is a laid down procedure before doing that – marriage! Does he possess any proof of marrying the lady? Was it by the customary law, court or in the Church?
Uncle’s elder brother, frowning at the ridiculous decision he took by hanging himself, said: “But he said that he was a Christian”. May we not be doing things that will bring the name of our God to public ridicule. If the man was truly a child of God, by killing himself, he had done what some unbelievers, who have had similar or even worse experiences in life, would not do. May no one follow his bad example!
For further comment, Please contact: Osondu Anyalechi: 0802 3002-471; [email protected]