Nonsense questions are fun to explore. There is something fascinating and intriguing about asking or positing questions for which there can be no actual answer.
What does the color blue taste like?
How far is it from here to insanity?
What time is the sweetest sound?
Indeed, these are questions. But this small collection of humorous inquiries shares at least one thing in common: they have no logical answer. They can be ASKED but they cannot be ANSWERED. These are nonsense questions.
Color and taste involve two different, unrelated senses. Distance and states of mind are not comparable, and temporal reality (time) and audible tones make strange bedfellows.
How does color, taste, distance, time, or sound have anything to do with the question of God murdering? Well, actually...everything.
SECRET WEAPONS...OR FANCY DUDS?
Skeptics of Christianity in general, and of the Bible in specificity, have a small and cherished collection of skeptical "Trump" cards. This tiny assortment of questions and accusations are presumed to be great "unanswerable" silver bullets, clever one-trick ponies to silence those pesky and gullible Bible-thumpers. A survey of atheistic and skeptical forums and blogs quickly reveals this to be the case.
While the mockery of the miraculous, such as Jonah and the great fish, or the virgin birth of Jesus, can be found by the bucket-load, most of these one-shot-wonders involve claims of immorality against the very character of God Himself. In fact, atheist professor Richard Dawkins devotes a large portion of the opening of his book, The God Delusion, to a glib tirade against the God of the Old Testament as the worst of all moral monsters.
THE DEATH OF INNOCENCE
Perhaps topping the list of these moral challenges is the accusation that God is evil because He has murdered CHILDREN. (Side note: a challenge of evil, like murder, is a humorous contradiction when made by an atheist--since morality cannot exist in atheism; right or wrong are not even possible in a purely naturalistic viewpoint!)
It is amazing that seemingly intelligent people use a term like MURDER in a sentence involving God, the Creator. Can we ask the question: Is God guilty of murder? Ummm...yes, you can ASK it, but the question is nonsense. Here's why.
Let me ask you a question: Have you ever taken something out of your house/apartment? Well, of course you have, so have I. But then, let me ask you:
Well, then, aren't you guilty of STEALING, then?
Well, of course NOT, you would say, and rightly so. Why? Because you CAN'T steal from yourself. If you own something, then you have the right to it. Now---if I go into your house, without permission, and I take something of yours, without permission, now that is something different altogether. That IS STEALING.
Why? Because it wasn't mine to take. I had no right to it.
DRAWING A CONCLUSION
Imagine taking a piece of paper and a pen and roughing out a sketch of a tree. You look at it and smile, but then, you decided to crumple it up and throw it away. Have you committed some great moral evil? Absolutely not. It was your creation, and you have the right to choose what you do with that creation. But if I took it away from you forcefully and then proceeded to tear it up...now that is wrong.
Here are 3 distinct reasons why it is nonsense to challenge that God has murdered anyone, whether baby, child, or geriatric.
REASON ONE: The Creator has the right to govern every aspect of His own creation.
God is the ultimate Creator. He has made all physical things. He has given life to all those that have life. He chooses when life begins, and He must allow the physical death of each person. Think about it: God owes no one anything. God did not have to give physical life, and there is no logical or moral reason that prevents Him from bringing that undeserved physical life to an end.
God has never promised that each person will live to be a certain age physically. When a teenager is killed in a car accident, or tragically, a baby dies of SIDS, we hear people say: "They were so young!" Even though this seems true, and indeed is correct on a certain level, in reality it betrays our improper view of what God is doing.
He has purposes and plans that are far beyond our understanding. There may be incredible and world-changing reasons why one is taken away at birth, and another lives into a "ripe" old age. We only see the tiniest of slivers of what God is doing, and what He has been doing, and what He will do in the future.
REASON TWO: Only people can murder people.
The ending of life is not murder. People die every second from sickness, accidents, and the fatigue of bodily systems. These deaths are not murders. Murder is the unlawful taking of a human's life BY ANOTHER HUMAN. Only people can murder----because we do not have the ultimate right to decide when someone else's life should end. If someone trips and falls onto a sharp spike and dies, we do not say that they were murdered (unless another human planned out that "accident" and made it happen) but they did die.
REASON THREE: Physical death is not the end of a person's life.
It is almost comical to hear an atheist say that God has committed murder! Ponder that statement for a moment---by making that statement they are "allowing for" the existence of God. In other words, they say, IF I allow the possibility that God exists, well then, THAT God is guilty of murder.
But here comes the trap that they have stepped into of their own free will:
If you say (for sake of the argument) that God exists, then you are allowing for the possibility of "life after death", in other words, physical death is not the END! Physical death just changes the state of life, from an Earthly state to some type of spiritual life (after life). Since the Bible clearly teaches that humans are created in the image of God, that we have an eternal spiritual aspect that will never cease to exist, then the concept of death or murder takes on a completely new perspective.
A STEP IN A NEW DIRECTION
If a person is standing on the shore, they are experiencing the life of a land creature, a land-lover, as the sailors say. But if that same person gets on a boat, he has stepped into a new experience of life, a life at sea. These are merely two different experiences of life, the person does not cease to exist when they step onto the deck of the boat, it is the same person, just a different experience of life. Similarly, when a person dies (by any means) they do not cease to exist, rather, they step into a new phase, a new experience of life.
Now, I am not justifying one human killing another human, that is forbidden, except in war and execution of certain criminals (as the representation of God's judgment for their actions). Murder is wrong, because I do not have the right to decide when your life ends. That is not my decision, I did not create you.
But when the atheist challenges that children died in the flood of Noah, or that babies died in the conquest of the land of Canaan by the armies of Israel, their accusation against God falls into the realm of nonsense questions. First, God has never promised a certain physical life span. Secondly, only people can murder people, because murder implies an action without right, and God, as creator, has all rights. Finally, death is not the end of existence, rather, physical death is a transition into a new phase of life.
APPLES AND PRESIDENTS
Can people ask: "Is God guilty of murder?" Sure, but remember, you can ask all kinds of nonsense questions, like "How many apples does it take to elect a president?" You can ask it, but that question is just wrong all the way to the core.