Is It a Sin for Christians to Be Depressed?


Some people suffer from depression, but should Christians be among them? One man told Billy Graham that he has a chemical imbalance in his brain that needs to be treated with medication, but his Christian friend told him to just pray about it and have faith in God.

Confused, the man asked Graham what he should do and if it's a sin for him to feel depressed. The evangelist, in turn, answered his question with another question.

"Let me ask you a question: If you broke your arm in an accident, do you think your friend would claim it was a sin for you to have a broken arm, and all you needed to do was pray? I doubt it," he wrote on his website.

In the same vein, Graham said it is not considered sin for the depressed man to seek treatment for the chemical imbalance in his brain. Psalm 139:14 says that people are "fearfully and wonderfully made," and Graham agrees, adding that people's bodies and minds are all very complex.

"Although doctors can't solve all our problems, we should be grateful that God has enabled them to understand more about our bodies and minds, and has given them new ways to overcome many of our problems," he said. "Don't feel that you are somehow sinning by seeking treatment for your depression; it would be wrong for you not to seek treatment."

However, Graham would like to make something clear. God has given Christians the gift of prayer, and it should be an important part of their day-to-day lives as they fight whatever mental, physical, or emotional struggle they are faced with.

"Through prayer we draw near to God, and the closer we get to Him, the more we will realize that He loves us and wants to help us," he said.