Praying for Death


sitting down under a juniper tree, he prayed to have done with life. I can bear no more, Lord, he said; put an end to my life; I have no better right to live than my fathers (1 Kings 19:4)

Is it a sin to pray for death?

Christi pax,



I don’t think so. I suspect a lot of people, especially at the end of their lives do just that.


Better to pray fro God’s will to be done.


When Joseph and Mary presented the baby Jesus to the very old Simeon, he sang God’s praises this way.

[INDENT]Now, master, let your servant go in peace according to your word,
because my eyes have seen your salvation.
You prepared this salvation in the presence of all peoples.
It’s a light for revelation to the Gentiles
and a glory for your people Israel.[/INDENT]

This prayer is made every night as a part of the liturgy of the hours.

You can always ask, just don’t take things into your own hands.


Consider:Phil. 1:23 …My desire is to depart and be with Christ…
Paul may have had this prayer in his heart, and it is not wrong to have this prayer in one’s heart, but he persevered as long as God willed him to remain on earth.


Agreed…and that God helps you to be ready for judgement.


In the Bible there are other persons who pray to God to take their life, or to release them from this life. Perhaps they are only recognizing that the Lord may take back that which he has given. What’s the harm in asking? However, as Clare wrote, we should pray for God’s will. Read how Sarah prayed in Tobit 3: “Bid me to depart from the earth, …but if it does not please you, Lord, to take my life, look favorably upon me and have pity on me.” (NABRE)


Why do you ask?



:hmmm: That’s true. Keep in mind, however, that God may alter his will to suit our requests.

Check out this old testament passage: Isaiah 38 --> King Hezekiah’s interactions with God the Father upon his death bed.

If God may extend our lives upon request, he may also shorten our lives upon request.




Looking at the Church teaching (see below) I would tend to say it could be sinful to pray fro death.

CCC 2288** Life and physical health are precious gifts entrusted to us by God. We must take reasonable care of them**, taking into account the needs of others and the common good.

Concern for the health of its citizens requires that society help in the attainment of living-conditions that allow them to grow and reach maturity: food and clothing, housing, health care, basic education, employment, and social assistance.


Moses: And if thou deal thus with me, kill me, I pray thee, out of hand, if I have found favour in thy sight; and let me not see my wretchedness.


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