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February 28, 2018 Q & A

Mustn’t God Love Everyone?

Question

Since God is perfect, His love would also have to be perfect; so wouldn’t that mean he has to love everyone? I know he does not love everyone with the same love he loves the saved, but still wouldn’t he have to love his enemies and the “unlovable?”

Answer

You are certainly right in saying “God is perfect,” but it does not follow that, to be perfect, he has to love everyone. He does not love Satan, even though he created Satan in the first place. However, when he created Satan, he was not at all what he is now. He was originally a mighty angel, pleasing to God. But then he rebelled against God. He did not want to remain in the status that he had been given by God who created him.

In a similar way, man was originally pleasing to God. Adam was created in God’s image. But then he, too, rebelled against God. And because the whole human race derives from Adam, it, too, is in rebellion against God. You are therefore also correct when you say that God “does not love everyone with the same love he loves the saved.” It is for this reason that the Bible speaks of God’s special love for those whom he has chosen out of the fallen human race. It is therefore not correct to suggest that God “has to love everyone.” No, God does not have to love everyone. Why should he? There is nothing outside of God that compels him to do anything. He is only compelled to do what his own perfectly holy nature inclines him to do.

It is certainly correct to say that God loved all creatures that he created before they started hating him (for no reason whatever). But now that the human race is fallen, God has every right to say “Jacob have I loved, but Esau I have hated.” The fact that God loved Jacob is indeed amazing. But the fact that he hated Esau does not seem to me to be at all amazing.

The place to begin (and end) with respect to these things is to come to realize that because of the fall of man in the sin of Adam we deserve nothing but God’s wrath and curse. Starting there, we can see the wonder of God’s redeeming love.

 

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