A couple days ago I was thinking about how God loves believers and unbelievers. The central question is: does God love them differently or do they merely stop the flow of God’s love because of their rebellion?
I imagine this is an unanswerable question to some degree, trying to define an attribute of God that is deeper than our comprehension.
At another point, I think Scripture reveals some things that can help us think better on the issue.
God’s love is demonstrated many ways, some of which don’t always look loving to the external view–having His only begotten Son crucified looked pretty mean, but was in actuality a great demonstration of love.
So, right off the bat we have to admit we are poor judges of what true love really looks like.
We also must take one of God’s attributes in light of all His attributes. God is love and God is also holy, holy, holy. God is righteous and just. You can’t just rip an attribute out of the whole and elevate it or press it out of measure.
God’s love is holy, righteous, and just and all attributes are those things perfectly. God does indeed love all people in the world. Based on my understanding of Scripture, Christ died for the sins of the world. Rejecting His offer of salvation, trampling under foot the Son of God, puts you in a very bad place and indeed you have stopped the flow of God’s love.
At the same time, we have to understand a couple other verses on the subject like Psalm 5:4-5
For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee.The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity.
And we’ll throw in Psalm 11:5 for good measure:
The Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.
God doesn’t just stop the flow of His love toward the wicked person; He hates them!
Does man merely thwart God’s love, or does God remove His love based on the faith/obedience of the person?
I would answer this question with a resounding YES!