Torrey - God -9.2- Who does God love?

II. WHO DOES GOD LOVE?

Matthew 3:17 — "And lo a voice from heaven saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

Matthew 17:5 — "While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him."

Luke 20:13 — "Then said the Lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved Son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him."

First Proposition: God loves His Son. God's Son is the original and eternal object of HIS love.

John 17:24 "Father, I will that they also, whom thou has given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory which thou hast given me; for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world."

Because of a necessity in the Divine Being Himself, if God is eternal love, that love must have an eternal object. There must, then, be multiple persons in the Godhead. The eternal object of the divine love is the Eternal Son. John 16:27 — "For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God." John 14:21,23 — "He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him."

Second Proposition: God loves those who are united to the Son by faith and love.

God loves, as we shall see, all men, but He has an altogether peculiar love for those who are in Christ.

John 17:23 — "I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me."

God has precisely the same love to those who are in Christ that He has to Christ Himself. Of course there is a love from God to those who are now in Christ which precedes their love to Christ. ( 1 John 4:19 — "We love Him, because He first loved us.")

John 3:16 — "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

1 Timothy 2:4 "Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth."

2 Peter 3:9 — "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."

Third Proposition: God loves the world — the whole human race and each individual in it.

Romans 5:6-8 — "For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."

Ephesians 2:4-5 — "But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ (by grace ye are saved)." Ezekiel 33:11 — "Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?"

Fourth Proposition: God loves the sinner, the ungodly, those dead in sin.

God's love for the unregenerate sinner differs from the love He has for the one in Christ ( John 14:21,23 John 17:23; Romans 8:30-39). But God has a peculiar interest in lost ones. ( Luke 15:7-10 — "I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in Heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons which need no repentance.

Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.") This can be understood by a father's love for a true son and a wayward son.