I am finally able to sit down and write this and I apologize for the long delay.
In this post I will try to answer the question regarding which of three views, if any, I am arguing for.
The three views as described by Charles and Clifford are as follows:
a) That since God gave us life He could take it away any time regardless of any other factors.
b) That people are guilty because of Adam’s sin regardless of whether they have done anything worthy of death themselves.
c) That God “…does have the right to kill those creations who never would have come to exist without his act of mercy upon their criminal ancestors… God saved the descendants from nonexistence before they were born, which… gives him the right to revoke that gift at any time.”
In order to keep this post as short as possible there are several elements I am intentionally leaving out such as the role of Satan, the role of Jesus, God’s governmental structure and God’s endgame.
The first question we need to address is under what circumstances, if any, does a creator have the right to take the life of a created being?
Clifford mentioned earlier that he could think of two instances where a creator would have a responsibility to end a life; if the creature is in unstoppable agony or if its existence becomes a threat to the creator.
I am arguing that there is a third instance; mainly in the case where one created being becomes a threat to other created beings. The creator would have a responsibility to protect the innocent.
The second part of this has to do with the concept of a sinless/sinful nature. The “nature” of a created being refers to its internal impulses/inclinations/instincts. These are the inclinations that a being has from the time it first comes into existence.
All the beings that God initially created were created with a sinless nature. In essence what this means is that all created beings were brought into existence with a certain initial bias; they had a natural attraction towards doing the right thing; towards happily coexisting with one another.
In other words, to tie this with what I said in Part 1, for any of them to want to do something that would threaten the wellbeing of others would have felt completely unnatural. Of course, they still had free will and could potentially at some point make the conscious choice to go against their nature.
Having a sinFUL nature on the other hand means exactly the opposite: that the internal inclinations/ impulses of the individual would be slanted against doing right. The natural attraction for such a person would be towards the wrong and towards things that would threaten the wellbeing of others.
As already mentioned, all individuals that God created Himself, including Adam and Eve, were created with a sinless nature. All of Adam’s descendants however, the entire human race, were born with a sinful nature. So human beings are by their internal nature a threat to other created beings. But, since they have free will, it is still possible for them to come to a point where they choose to go against their nature which is why God allows them a few years of probationary time. But all human beings are as of now under the death penalty, sort of speak, or else they wouldn’t die of old age or die at all. In the final judgment however, anyone who repents will be saved.
Now we were talking about people being guilty for Adam’s sin. Guilt is a judicial concept and is incurred for having committed an unjust act. To punish a child for the actions of the father would definitely be unfair and I personally don’t believe the Bible teaches this. People become guilty when they commit wrong acts themselves. But because they are born with a sinful nature they invariably commit these acts.
Finally, we have a situation where the entire race is already under the death penalty and already only has a very limited time in which to choose sides. And then we have individuals who are not only not taking advantage of this limited opportunity for themselves but are getting in the way of others taking advantage of it and God chooses in a few instances to dispose of such individuals.
Now, as far as I can tell, this view does not line up with any of the three views that were mentioned at the start but you might disagree…Share