I have been a Christian for more than 50 years, so the following question is posed from a Christian perspective and not from a skeptic's perspective. It is a difficult question, but it may prove interesting to those on this FB website. I personally have an answer for this question, but I think you would enjoy answering it without my help. I will also post this question elsewhere as well.
If Samson's death at the Philistine temple of Dagon killed only the "guilty" Philistine soldiers, but killed no "innocent" adult civilians or children, how is this any different from a Japanese kamikaze pilot who will commit suicide during World War II in order to kill the enemy? It's still a suicide to kill the enemy during a war. And remember, the Israelites were still at war with the Philistines.
On the other hand, if Samson actually knew that most of the people who were at the Philistine temple that day were not soldiers, had never seen battle, and who were innocent wives and children of rulers and other rich people who were gathered at that very public facility that day, then how is this any different from a terrorist suicide-bomber who deliberately kills himself along with killing many innocent people at a public facility, but who also is convinced that his nation is at war with its enemies?
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The Philistines were the aggressors, Israel was engaged in a God ordained, "just" war. The Philistines were also pagans, idolaters that had been judged by God. The circumstances during the Biblical period of Exodus, thru the Judges was a distinct period of God's judgement on idolaters. Israel had been commissioned by God to conquer the land and remove the pagans. The situation with Sampson was no different than what we read in the book if Joshua, when Israel's army destroyed Jericho, and killed all it's inhabitants. As for the non military adult deaths, we are all sinners deserving of death. The Philistines were no different than Christ rejecters today. They are all unsaved, unrepentant sinners. God destroyed all the human population during the flood, except for Noah's family. The children (below the age of accountability) also died, but they didn't grow up to be idolaters, besides death of a child is never an obstacle to God. God's judgement is real, and sure on His unsaved enemies. He has just used different methods/ people groups or supernatural events through out history to accomplish His judgement. He judges His own people in this life, also, except judgement of His errant people is (namely those people He has saved) temporal and not eternal damnation. If you, as one of God's elect, become an obstacle to His purposes, He may take you out of the way as well. The Islamic jihaddis that murder people in the name of Allah are simply a different form of idolaters. Allah is not the one true God. He is no different than the pagan deities that were worshiped by the Philistines. God's judgement on the Christ rejecting world today seems over due. If you are in Christ, He has with stood the judgement due to you. If you have not received Christ by faith, you will stand your own judgement.
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I think your response is very good and reasonably well thought out, Doug. As I said, Doug, I am not posing this question as a skeptic. In fact I don't personally have this question at all. My post is not meant to be critical of God in any way, but only to point out some very unexpected similarities. I just thought that some people on this FB website might enjoy pondering on these comparisons. That being said, rather than "defending God" (which you did admirably, by the way) by pointing out God's Holiness, Righteous, Justice, Judgment, Mercy, Sovereignty, and a reasonably good comparison with the mission of Joshua, can you instead more specifically address the similarity and the comparison between what Samson did and what the Japanese kamikaze pilots did in WWII (in that both are acts of suicide designed to kill a military enemy during a war) and address the similarity and comparison between what Samson did and what a terrorist suicide bomber does (in that both are suicides that occurred in a very public place inside the enemy's nation and were designed by the person committing the suicide to kill as many people as possible even though many of the people who would be killed never served in a war, and may have been women and children). Perhaps you could address the similarity of the final thoughts that Samson, the Japanese kamikaze pilot, and the terrorist suicide bomber might have been having just moments before they did their final act as they were repetitively convincing themselves of the importance to do what they were about to do because of their faith in their God and their country and their personal patriotism and their desire to end their war (or conquer the enemy), etc.