Why Murder in the Bible Does Not Contradict “Thou Shalt Not Kill”

Jeff Grupp, PraiseandLove.net, March 8, 2019

PDF available: Why Murder in the Bible Does Not Contradict “Thou Shall Not Kill, by Jeff Grupp”

Here is a video of this article:

1.  Introduction: God Says “No Killing” and then Commands a Lot of Killing to Happen.

In the extremely popular video series, The Power of Myth (also made into a book), Professor Joseph Campbell voiced the following complaint about an apparent contradiction in the Bible:

In bounded communities, aggression is projected outward. For example, the ten commandments say, “Thou shalt not kill.” Then the next chapter says, “Go into Canaan and kill everybody in it.” That is a bounded field. The myths of participation and love pertain only to the in-group, and the out-group is totally other.[1]

The Canaanite obliteration is just one of a plethora of utter annihilations God’s people carried-out in the Bible. Killings in the Bible are of all sorts: war-killings and annihilations, individual killings, killings of children, and so on. Humans are commanded by God to kill both before and after the Sixth Commandment (“Thou shalt not kill”) is laid down as Law in Exodus 20, throughout the entire Old Testament, and info the New.

It is widely held by atheists and those who oppose Christianity that there is quite obvious and wretched contradiction involving the Sixth Commandment, since God commands killings, and God’s people partake in killings, all throughout the Bible, especially the Old Testament. At first glance, the situation seems to be surprisingly obvious hypocrisy and contradiction, by  none-other than God Himself, since God says “Thou shalt not do X,” and then God commands X not long afterwards, and then very regularly throughout the Old Testament, and into the New Testament, where God and God’s people can be seen to do X (kill). This is believed to be one of the most obvious and straightforward logical contradictions, according to opponents of Christianity, found in the Bible.

And from what I can tell, this is an issue that Christians—from seminary professors to luke-warm Sunday Christians—have no clue how to respond to—completely unaware that the idea that there is a contradiction is, actually, incorrect, and is based on a surprisingly obvious and strange error in interpreting what the Sixth Commandment plainly says, as will be shown in this paper. Christians are, apparently, unaware of the fact that the supposed contradiction is all an illusion, and instead, have tried to come up with responses to the atheist claim that there is a contradiction between the God-killings in the Bible on the one hand, and the Sixth Commandment on the other. These attempts by Christians are, however, inept at best, and outright heresy at worst, and, in general, they come in the following forms:

i. They claim that the words of the Bible need to be changed (which is a heresy), by saying all the translations are wrong and that it should not say “Thou shalt not kill,” but rather something like, “Thou shalt not do capital punishment.”[2]

ii. They claim that the Old Testament no longer counts, and only the New Testament law counts—as if the Law, which is the power of God, can change, and has changed, from the Old to the New Testament.

iii. They claim that the words “kill” or “murder” don’t mean what they usually mean in Exodus 20:13, and have some nonobvious meaning, and purportedly other words should have been used in Exodus 20:13 instead.

All of these lead to the heretical conclusion that the Bible should be changed, or that it cannot be trusted as saying what it plainly says. These are all desperate, possibly dishonest, and non-glamourous attempts to weasel out of being trapped in what is (falsely) believe to be a contradiction. These shortsighted and perhaps irresponsible claims come from the biggest players in Christian apologetics and theory today, such as Answers in Genesis[3] and GodandScience.org[4]. And apparently the real resolution to this so-called dilemma has not been discussed before this paper.

The specific error made by the two groups who erroneously believe there is a contradiction surrounding the Sixth Commandment in the Bible—which are the big-name atheists in academia and on the internet, on the one hand, and the Christians just referred to who erroneously believe there is a contradiction they need to try to argue against, on the other hand—is an error that can be concisely stated as follows:

God is not referring to Himself, He is not commanding Himself, in the Sixth Commandment. It is a command to humans only.

The Sixth Commandment is a command to humans, not to God, Himself. A contradiction emerges in the Bible when one falsely believes God is talking about Himself in the Sixth Commandment, but when that falsehood is removed, there is no contradiction in the Bible surrounding the Sixth Commandment. And sin, in the case of killing, only ensues for a free-willed human breaking the law in violating the Sixth Commandment, and the idea that the Bible, or the Sixth Commandment, states that God cannot kill a human is false, and when God does kill a human there is no logical inconsistency in the Bible. I will explore many revealing details of this ubiquitous error fully in this paper.

Many big-name atheists have made careers and gained large audiences out of pointing out the fictitious and imagined contradiction, that is based on this (and a few other) invented misunderstandings of what the Bible is saying. In simpler terms, this paper will clearly show that the big-name atheists who are discussing the presumed contradiction surrounding the Sixth Commandment have simply not read the Bible properly. If any of the big-name atheists who have gained such large audiences (Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, Lawrence Krauss, etc.) were to simply pause and properly breakdown the (fallacious) argument that any one or more of the killings told about in the Bible specifically contradicts the Sixth Commandment—as I will breakdown, below—it would be quickly discovered that that’s not only incorrect, and that the claim is based on careless analysis of the Bible—but the problem for the atheist regarding this supposed contradiction is more serious, for if they took the time to breakdown their claim of contradiction, it would readily been seen that

It is logically impossible to juxtapose any two pieces of text in the Bible to make them contradict with respect to this issue of any murders/killings in the Bible being in contradiction to the Sixth Commandment.

This will be broken-down in section 4 below.

Again, we will see that the entire idea of a contradiction surrounding the killings in the Bible and the Sixth Commandment has to do with a startlingly obvious and simple misreading the Sixth Commandment (“Thou shalt not kill”), believing God is talking about Himself, in addition to the humans He is commanding. This paper can serve as a warning, about the surprising imprecision and lack of depth that both the atheist community, and the Christian community (including seminarians), are often operating at, in exploring the text of the Bible.

I imagine many readers will want to side-step the very specific issue I am discussing, and instead focus on how troubling it is that the Bible is replete with killing, including much God-endorsed and God-caused killing, in the first place. That is a very good topic for discussion, but that is specifically not what I am discussing in this short paper.[5] To repeat, my only intention is to show the pure logical coherence Scripture, on the subject of the Sixth Commandment with respect to killings orchestrated by God and/or His chosen people. My own opinions and considerations are not of any concern in this sensitive topic, and I only will show that there is no logical contradiction amid the sentences of the Bible surrounding killing.

2.  The Specifics of the (Supposed) Contradiction

The Sixth Commandment appears in Exodus 20:13. After this commandment is given, there are a plethora of murders occurring quite regularly throughout the history of the Old Testament and into the New, both in the context of war, and outside of it. These are often killings described as being done for God’s purposes, and often visibly by God’s direct command or action, in the cases where they are not human-generated killings. Consider the very well-known example of Samson and the mass-killing of the Philistines (this example will be analyzed at length in a section below): Judges 16:28-30 New King James Version (NKJV): 28 Then Samson called to the Lord, saying, “O Lord God, remember me, I pray! Strengthen me, I pray, just this once, O God, that I may with one blow take vengeance on the Philistines for my two eyes!” 29 And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars which supported the temple, and he braced himself against them, one on his right and the other on his left. 30 Then Samson said, “Let me die with the Philistines!” And he pushed with all his might, and the temple fell on the lords and all the people who were in it. So the dead that he killed at his death were more than he had killed in his life.

As mentioned, many will believe that what they are reading here is a simple and obvious contradiction to the Sixth Commandment, which can plainly be stated as follows:

God commanded against murder (~M), God commanded and/or caused murders (M) = ~M ^ M (logical contradiction)

Here we can see, in the way this supposed contradiction has been written, that it involves the widely believed but false idea that the Sixth Commandment refers to God, in addition to humans. This is the simple, ubiquitous, and stark misreading that falsely leads to the purported contradiction.

3.   ‘Thou Shalt Not Kill’ is a Command to Humans, not God

As stated, the specific problem that has led to millions being deceived into falsely believing there is contradiction in the Bible, between the Sixth Commandment and killings throughout the Bible, is generated by the error in believing that God was talking about Himself in the Sixth Commandment. The oversight, made by many of the famous atheists of the world (e.g., Matt Dillahunty), and which is an oversight not noticed by Christians, is startlingly obvious, and to restate it in different words than given above, goes as follows:

God commanded humans not to kill, but God Himself is not commanded not to kill. Thus, God can kill, as well as command humans to kill (wherein God, not free-willed humans, are the cause). By God’s volition, either directly killing humans, or by working in and through humans to kill other humans, and not by human free-will, involves no sin, and involves no contradiction with the commands for humans in the Sixth Commandment.

There are various types of sin, but I am restricting discussion of sin here to the category of sin that can be described as being in violation of God’s commands and God’s law. So, if God were to say of Himself, “I am not to kill a human,” and then He does so, violation of God’s law would apparently result, and sin would seemingly be involved. But, of course, this is not what happens in the Bible, since the Sixth Commandment is written to humans, not to God, and therefore God ending the life of a human is not a violation of God’s law. This is the point missed by those concerned with a supposed contradiction surrounding the Sixth Commandment.

As a brief aside, some comment should be made about how many are troubled by this notion of God freely taking a human life. The physical reality we humans live in, loosely speaking, is like a computer program, all written before time (I am referring to the theology of predestination, a topic Christians are often shy to talk about, but which is, to paraphrase Karl Barth, the entire message of the Bible [also see Grupp 2018a and 2018b], 2019, and 2013). Within this pre-programmed reality, God, who creates all things and controls all things, is directly or indirectly, bringing-in and removing human physical bodies from physical reality constantly, and to imagine that there is a problem with this, or that’s it’s something to be resisted or feared, would be like imagining that there is a problem with rain falling or wind blowing, and that those are things we must try to resist or which we should rationally fear. According to the Bible, God is in control of all things, which is merely a different philosophy of events than the equally metaphysical philosophy of events generally endorsed by academia (cause and effect are connected, even though whatever is denoted by the word “connection” in that sentence is nonempirical and invisible, to expand off of what David Hume famously wrote about). But without direct experience of this (that is, without nonempirical, spiritual experience of God’s control over this computer-program-reality, for lack of better words), one may believe the course of their physical life may be something that they need to (try to) control—which can, and usually does, expand into the idea that death is something problematical and/or to be resisted or feared. But with the genuine believer who is in Christ, body death is highly anticipated (think of Stephen appearing like an angel before he was even being stoned).[6] End of aside.

From what I can tell, when I read commentary about the Sixth Commandment given by both atheists and critics of the Bible, but also by theists who try to argue against them and show there is no contradiction in the Bible, these debaters are seemingly completely unaware of the aforementioned ubiquitous misconception, error, and misreading of the Sixth Commandment, as surprising at that might be. They each[7] appear to (erroneously) imagine, for some unknown reason, that the Sixth Commandment says something roughly like the following: “By God’s command, no killing of humans of any sort is allowed, neither by God or by any humans” (call this 6C-not-Scripture).

So, unsurprisingly, when it is believed that the Sixth Commandment says what 6C-not-Scripture above contains, it is believed that there is a contradiction that exists in Scripture. And one can hardly blame any atheists and opponents of Christianity from believing that a contradiction has occurred. And likewise, one can hardly blame Christians for either having no clue how to get out of this serious dilemma that appears to show that their faith contains a staggeringly obvious and stark logical contradiction, or for panicking and developing desperately inept attempts to explain a way out of it.

But as noted above, if we merely look at what the Sixth Commandment in Exodus 20 says, it does not say anything like what 6C-not-Scirpture is saying. Compare 6C-not-Scripture to the actual text of the Sixth commandment, which does not contain any commentary about God commanding Himself, but only God stating a command to humans:

“Thou shalt not kill” (call this 6C-Scripture).

The actual text of the Sixth Commandment (6C-Scripture) is quite different than saying something like “No killing of humans, of any sort, is allowed, by God’s command, not by God or by any humans” (6C-not-Scripture). And in some important ways, 6C-not-Scripture and 6C-Scripture are opposites. Consider the differences between the erroneous way the Sixth Commandment is imagined (6C-not-Scripture), versus the actual Scripture of the Sixth Commandment (6C-Scripture):

“No killing of humans is allowed, carried-out by God or by any humans” (6C-not-Scripture) “Thou shalt not kill”
(6C-Scripture)
Involves the (non-Scriptural) idea that God is forbidden from doing any killing, and involves the non-Scriptural idea that the Sixth Commandment is a command directed at God (He directed it at Himself), rather than at humans only.  Involves God speaking to humans, where humans are given a law, and where it’s not the case that God is given a law. So actual Scripture (6C-Scripture) only says humans are not to do killing, says nothing about if God can do any killing or not.
Non-Scripturally forbids God killings, calls them “contradiction.” Permits God killings, and no contradiction follows when God causes killings.

Note that it appears that millions, if not billions, of people on Earth, including atheists, pastors, and professors on both sides of the theological fence, appear to erroneously believe that 6C-not-Scripture is what the Sixth Commandment is saying, when it’s actually saying very much the opposite.[8]

When I hear atheists discuss the Sixth Commandant, it is always erroneously presented as 6C-not-Scripture, wherein 6C-not-Scripture is therein used in strawman analysis in debating about the supposed contradiction in the Bible surrounding the Sixth commandment. This amounts to a significant disinformation campaign presented by big-name atheists. 6C-not-Scripture involves the incorrect idea that God cannot non-sinfully do any killings, and to debate the Sixth Commandment in terms of 6C-not-Scripture is like a debate about the nature of purgatory, or a debate over how long a unicorn’s horn is (i.e., a debate about something that does not exist). 

It was pointed out above how the entire problem that has caused atheists (and some theists alike) to falsely imagine that there is a contradiction surrounding the Sixth Commandment and the killings in the Bible, is caused by the false idea that God directs the Sixth Commandment to both people and to Himself, and missing the point that God can kill without sin or contradiction, whereas humans cannot kill. When this misunderstanding is removed from theology, it is logically impossible for contradiction to exist in any aspects of the text of the Bible between killings in the Bible, and the Sixth Commandment.

Consider the following points:

A. “Thou shalt not kill” is a directive to humans, not God giving a command or rule to Himself. If God exterminates any person or persons, then it is just, and He knows when it needs to happen, according to His plans and purposes in predestinational reality (this will be discussed more below, also see Grupp 2018a, 2018b for more information). But a human is foolish, and does not know such things, cannot accurately see God’s plan, and thus cannot take such matters into their own hands, and rather, matters of this level of seriousness can obviously only be in God’s control, and must be worked-through by God when profound things such as the end of a human life are to happen.

B. The problem reduces to the question of whose volition causes a killing: God’s volition (not sin), or a human’s volition (which, in the case of free-willed murder, would be willful sin, after the Ten Commandments were laid down). (But we will see below that in either case, regardless of which volition causes a killing, the Sixth Commandment does not include God, and no contradiction can ever emerge in the Biblical text surrounding the Sixth Commandment.)

Points A and B reveal that concern over there being a contradiction in the Bible regarding killings is based on not seeing what the Bible is actually saying, failing to look at Scripture for what it actually contains, and the false assumption that God cannot kill and the Sixth Commandment is directed at God (God saying the commandment to Himself) is a startling oversight that millions of people have not noticed, and this shows how sloppy people (both atheists and theists alike) study the actual Biblical text, and how easily gross misunderstandings that deceive millions can emerge. This is almost certainly the same sort of mindset and carelessness that the Pharisees had when they missed the points of Scripture and did not recognize Jesus for what He was, even though He did miracles right in front of them.[9] Indeed, the same sort of carelessness, that is probably caused by having a hardened heart and the consequent blindness, not being able to see Scripture clearly, is safe to conclude is the cause for this failure to see the text of Scripture properly and clearly.

4.  The Impossibility of Textual Logical Contradiction To Do With the Sixth Commandment

Now that we are past the issue of who the Sixth Commandment is actually commanding, we can next investigate the only scenarios about killing that can happen in the Bible, given the contexts the Bible is written within:

  1. God kills a human using another human to do the killing (e.g., Goliath killed by David, massacre of the Canaanites in Deuteronomy 20, etc.).
  2. God kills a human without using another human to do the killing (e.g,. the flood, Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5, etc.).
  3. A human does a killing by their sinful free-will completely independent of any causation from God, God has nothing to do with the killing.

1-3 exhaust all possible scenarios. Any other scenario that could be conceived would fit into 1-3 (for example, God commanding the Angel of Death fits into 2, a human asking God to help in killing another person fits into 1, a human forcing another human to do a killing ultimately fits into 3). 1 and 2 are not sin, and do not involve any logical contradiction, and 3 does involve sin, and also does not involve logical contradiction amid the sentences of the Bible. 1-3 exhaust all scenarios; contradiction to the Sixth Commandment does not exist in any of them.

For a contradiction to the Sixth Commandment to be found in the Biblical text, an impossible and absurd situation would have to be proposed, and which could never be actualized, in this reality or any reality, where a free-will agent (FWA) has their actions fully controlled by God (~FWA), in order to do the killing, wherein the killing would be describable as FWA ^ ~FWA (contradiction, cannot exist). This would be like saying the completely free person was completely unfree in order to do the killing. If God commands a killing, it automatically is not a contradiction to the Sixth Commandant, since God is the cause, rather than the human (points 1 and 2 above). And if a human does a killing, the only way they can be the cause of it is if they do so independent of God (point 3 above), which is automatically not a contradiction. So again, as stated, it is impossible for a textual logical contradiction to be found in the Biblical text surrounding the Sixth Commandment and murders in the Bible.

5.  Example from the Bible Analyzed, Part 1: Samson

Let’s go back to the case of Samson and the Philistines:

  • Judges 16:28-30 New King James Version (NKJV): 28 Then Samson called to the Lord, saying, “O Lord God, remember me, I pray! Strengthen me, I pray, just this once, O God, that I may with one blow take vengeance on the Philistines for my two eyes!” 29 And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars which supported the temple, and he braced himself against them, one on his right and the other on his left. 30 Then Samson said, “Let me die with the Philistines!” And he pushed with all his might, and the temple fell on the lords and all the people who were in it. So the dead that he killed at his death were more than he had killed in his life.

This passage is like the situation discussed above, of a human asking God to help in killing another person, which we said fits into scenario 1. Verse 30 says “he killed,” as if Samson did the killing of his own free will, so this scenario would seem to possibly fit into scenario 3. But verse 28 shows Samson first calling out to the Lord, in a moment of faith (connection to God), saying “strengthen me,” where it would seem that Samson has given his power over to the Lord, and the Lord now controls the events, which would be scenario 1. On that scenario, the “he’ referred to in v.30 when it says “he killed” would appear to refer to a God-strengthen and maybe even God-possessed Samson, not a free-willed autonomous Samson, and thus the situation would involve God as the cause of the killing (scenario 1). In different words, when the weak Samson says, “strengthen me,” he is requesting a power outside of himself to aide him in what he cannot do (and the Biblical story of Samson makes it quite clear that his strength is only the strength of God, not of Samson), so these are God-killings, scenario 1, throughout.

In order for us to theorize some sort of situation where the Samson story could involve a contradiction to the Sixth Commandment, we’d have to have a situation where God gives Samson power which Samson does not have (it’s God’s power), makes it part of Samson’s being (which is a philosophical problem, since God’s power would have to be part of Samson’s identity, of Samson’s self, wherein we’d also run into a logical contradiction, where weak Samson = strong Samson, or S = not-S). And then completely by Samson’s free will, without any help by God, Samson would have to push the pillars, with an inhuman power that is now, somehow, coherently a solely a human power. Any situation we try to fit into a scenario where the Sixth Commandment is contradicted will run into strings of absurdities like this. To repeat, it is impossible to create or find a situation where a textual contradiction to the Sixth Commandment can exist.

6.  God as Necessary Condition in a Killing

From this discussion of the story of Samson, we can get an idea of how to identify who is the specific cause of a given killing—if God or a human is the cause of a killing—by the they following formula:

If agent A (God or human) were removed from having any involvement in the killing event, then the killing would not have happened, wherein A is a necessary condition in the causality of the killing event.

If God was not part of the mass-killing at the end of the Samson story, the killing could not have taken place, since Samson would not have had any strength. Thus, God is a necessary cause in this mass-killing, and no sin or contradiction is involved. It is impossible that Samson could have done this killing, in the way he did (pushing pillars), without God. On the other hand, if Samson was removed from the equation, the pillars would not have been pushed by him, specifically, but God could have instructed any other human He chose, and put strength into them, to do the killing. Therefore, God and only God is the ultimately causal reason for the killing of the Philistines in the way done at the end of the Samson story. In this way, we can see that God was the cause, and Samson was not.

7.  Thought Experiment: “Co-causality” Between God and Human to Kill Another Human

Try to imagine a scenario where God and a free-willed human collaborated in a killing, equally partnering, both being the cause, in some sort of scenario where each combined to be one cause, which, mathematically, would look like this: (cause-1 + cause-2)==>effect-K. To avoid the human being in a 1 or 2 scenario where God alone does the killing, in this co-causal hypothetical situation the human involved must be completely free-willed. The Samson situation seems close to being like this, perhaps, but we saw above Samson is not a necessary condition. Although they may not realize it, this must be the situation that atheists are looking for in asserting that there is contradiction between God-killings and the Sixth Commandment in the Bible. But the situation is a train-wreck, and runs into contradiction, since for this situation, the human involved would have to be a necessary condition for the killing to occur, which reveals the situation to be absurdity, since that human is controlled by an all-powerful God, in the Biblical scenario, and is by definition not a necessary condition, as we just discussed with the Samson story.

But if we ignore that contradiction in order to further explore this hypothetical collaborative, co-causal thought-experiment, (cause-1 + cause-2)==>effect-K, which the atheist requires since it involves God participating in the sin of a free-will human, we find yet more fatal problems, in addition to the ones already ignored just for the sake of exploring this co-causal idea. For example, how do the two causes, God’s will and human free-will, (cause-1 + cause-2), coordinate and co-operate? Somehow God’s will and human will, (cause-1 + cause-2), would have to have a unified causal efficiency to bring about effect-K, acting as a single force, a single causal energy, to bring about effect-K—they are acting as one, not as two, flirting with a pantheistic and non-monotheist scenario. And we are left with a situation where we have to imagine Samson’s power as on the same level as God’s, which again, strays too far outside of the Biblical framework for the sake of continuing the thought experiment.

As we can see, scenarios 1-3 are the only possibilities, as discussed above. The Bible is free of contradiction, and is rather something like a supernatural engineering schematic or blueprint, and any confusion surrounding it that humans have (such as erroneously believing that there is contradiction in the Bible, such as a contradiction supposedly to do with the Sixth Commandment), is only the product of humans failing to understand the supernaturalism of the Word of God, which is power rather than information (2 Cor. 4:20), and which is literally text that is supernatural Spirit (John 6:63), rather than human reason (where human reason is foolishness to God).

8.  Example from the Bible Analyzed Part 2, David and Goliath

Continuing to another well-known example, below we see David killing Goliath in the name of God:

  • 1 Samuel 17:45-50 New King James Version (NKJV): 45 Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. 47 Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s, and He will give you into our hands.” 48 So it was, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hurried and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. 49 Then David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone; and he slung it and struck the Philistine in his forehead, so that the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the earth. 50 So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. But there was no sword in the hand of David.

This is a clear-cut 1 scenario, God using a human to kill another human. David announces that he does not come of his own accord, but in the name of the Lord (and the name of the Lord is His identity: He is His name). So, David is effectively saying, “I do not come of my own accord, but God brings me.” We know that David was the king God prepared and predestined, so it is not surprising to find such a clear example of a 1 scenario here.

9.  Concluding Points.

And further, David declares that there is a plan behind this event too: that all may know that the true God is the God of Israel. And thus we have an example of how killing, done noncontradictorily by God, as part of his supernatural agenda for the natural world, carrying out His purposes, in the mystery of our predestined reality we humans live in. Humans do not understand this unless the power of God has been revealed to them (see 1 Cor. 1:18).

God has predestined reality, put every soul in the body it was to go into according to His pre-programmed / predestined reality, where each soul needed to be right where it was placed in order to carry-out God’s plan. For this purpose, the unchosen were needed to fill various roles, as discussed in Romans 9, and when God deems that the tasks of the unchosen are no longer needed on earth, they are apparently removed (killed).[10] That appears to be what physical reality involves (See Grupp, 2018a, 2018b).

So, God can kill, but the instructions are that humans, specifically, cannot kill. Humans, without God’s guidance, are not trustworthy enough, or knowledgeable enough, to know all the complexities for when killings are to be carried out or not, and when killings are in accord with God’s purposes and when not. Thus, humans freely killing is sin, and that why humans, who mimic their creator they were created in the image of, have been given a conscience to not murder. And thus removing a person from the predestined reality is always, ultimately, up to God lest it be sin that God does not intervene with in order to prevent.

The whole idea that there is any sort of contradiction in the Bible regarding killings is a tremendous oversight, misreading, and irresponsible misinformation campaign, based on the surprisingly simple error of believing that the Sixth Commandment involves God talking to Himself, commanding Himself, which is not the case. Atheism is on the rise, behind internet personalities with large fan-bases, that have not taken the time to carefully analyze their claims—such as the claim that the Sixth Commandment contradicts killings in the Bible. This leads to an important question: Inductively speaking, how many other influential arguments of the atheists, about the supposed problems and contradictions of Christianity, might also merely be illusions, and be products of their errors, and thus propaganda and disinformation campaigns in disguise?

Inductively speaking, how many other influential arguments of the atheists, about the supposed problems and contradictions of Christianity, might also merely be illusions, and be products of their errors, and thus propaganda and disinformation campaigns in disguise?

We can see that even in the most startling examples of killing in the Bible, such as killing one’s own child, for example, despite how disturbing it may seem, does not, however, involve any logical contradiction.[11]

Physical reality is like a computer program, from the level of the quantum computing of subatomic particles, to the level of macroscopic events that unfold over long periods of time. And the Bible is like an engineering schematic of that computer program, written by an all-powerful Programmer. The average person—whether atheist or Christian—typically has no idea of the depth and technical sophistication of the Bible, the intricacies of predestination, the mystery of Christ, and the power of the Joy of being possessed by Him.

-Jeff Grupp, Kalamazoo, MI, March 9, 2019



PDF available: Why Murder in the Bible Does Not Contradict “Thou Shall Not Kill, by Jeff Grupp”

Here is a video of this article:



Works Cited

Grupp, Jeff, 2019, “Simulation Theory: Mindscreen Implantation and Avoiding the Contradiction of Physical reality,” www.PraiseandLove.net, https://praiseandlove.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/SIMULATION-THEORY-Mindscreen-Implantation-and-Avoiding-the-Contradiction-of-Physical-Reality-JEFF-GRUPP.pdf.

Grupp, Jeff, 2018b, “Fullness Calvinism,” YouTube.com video lecture, YouTube Channel: Praiseandlove, Dec. 31, 2018, URL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-LhIi8ZhjWM.

Grupp, Jeff, 2018a, “God’s Pre-election Knowledge of the Soul: A New Interpretation of Biblical Election and Predestination Showing Why God Only Chose Some Rather Than All,” in TheoLogic: Revelation, Calvinism, Surrender, Nothingness, Morrisville, NC: Lulu Press, pp. 5-31, http://www.lulu.com/shop/jeff-grupp/theologic-revelation-calvinism-surrender-nothingness/hardcover/product-23923452.html.

Grupp, Jeff, 2013, “Reality is a Computer Simulation,” University of Michigan – Dearborn, Humanities Winter Colloquium Lecture, April 10, 2013, University of Michigan-Dearborn, CASL Room 1030, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyAmY6QAcDU.


[1] This is from the first chapter, “Myth and the Modern World”, of Power of Myth, by Joseph Campbell and Bill Moyers.

[2] This is in-line with the very popularly taught idea by seminary professors, and followed by preachers, that all the teams of world language experts that have translated the Bible into various translations, from Wycliff and Tyndale all the way up to the flurry of different translations over the past few decades, have all gotten it wrong in all agreeing on how to translate a specific word, such as the words “kill” or “murder,” in the case of the Sixth Commandment, and instead, a sole seminary professor has the right claim on how to translate a specific word. This deceit-prone practice allows people to change the Bible text according to their own understandings and biases, rather than lean on the translation process that has taken place for centuries.

[3] https://answersingenesis.org/contradictions-in-the-bible/a-time-to-kill/

[4] https://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/notkill.html

[5] That issue will be covered in a future paper. Christians do not like to discuss it, but killing something that God does, and killing and/or letting-die is something He is possibly doing at every second, if we agree with the concept than when a person is to die is determined and/or allowed by God

[6] Loss of body in body death is only troubling if one is grasping on to their physical bodily existence, rather than letting it go, letting God own it (1 Cor. 6:19-20), and when one does not understand the power of the Cross and being crucified with Christ (1 Cor. 1:18, Gal. 2:20). The mindset of the nonsalvific is one of identification with the body and wickedness, and fearing a breakage in that identification. But the mindset of the salvific is, loosely speaking, the inverse of that, as described in 1 Peter and Colossians:

Colossians 3:2 (ESV): Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.

1 Peter 4:7 (NIV): The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray

Often this verse in 1 Peter is interpreted as only meaning the end of the physical world before the rebuilding of it for the New Earth, but this verse has broader meaning than that, and, in my opinion, also can only mean the end of many other things, since it says the end of all things, which, then, would include the end of our fascination with the world, the end of our ego/persona, the end of non-angelic existence, the end of misery, the end of end of our pre-cruciformic life, the end of time (as we  know it), and so on.

[7] As I have discussed in the past, including on Aron Ra’s atheist radio broadcast (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LpIyEhM8ilc), this is common that Christians and atheists will be in heated debates over issues that are simply not in the Bible, and/or which are opposite of what the Bible says, but (wrongly) believing they are debating true Christianity. A great example of this is when Christians and atheist debate about faith, which both hold is merely believe without evidence, which contradicts Hebrews 11:1, which states that faith is evidence (see the KJV, among other translations).

[8] As I have discussed elsewhere, it is common for Christians to ubiquitously believe that the Bible involves a certain concept, C, where the concept is not in the Bible, and in fact, concept ~C pervades the Bible. There are many examples, but one the idea that God created Hell is a great example. See the following video that breaks down this topic: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OmY39Lab7qA.

[9] Strictly speaking, the Gospel of John tells us how many Pharisees were actually being converted to be Christ-followers as a result of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. So not all Pharisees were of such hard heartedness that they could not be unblinded.

[10] This is the doctrine of double predesintation.

[11] I imagine that there are cases were some in the atheist camp may enjoy big-budget Hollywood films about the same sort of killings done by free-willed human, enjoying them on the big-screen, but claiming they are immoral in the Bible.