By Dr Paul M Elliot
Church history records a variety of strongly-held positions on this question. Some have said that God loves all mankind equally. Others have said that God only loves His elect. Still others have said that God loves all men, but loves believers in a special way. What is the truth?
In the final analysis, we must be careful to say what Scripture says about the love of God and His attitude toward sin — no more, but also no less. And on the authority of Scripture, we must conclude that it is accurate to say that God loves sinners, but hates sin — but also that those who persist in their sin will personally experience the eternal wrath of God.
While We Were Still Sinners”
Romans 5:8 alone is a sufficient basis for the assertion that God does indeed love sinners: “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” If God did not love sinners, He would not have sent His Son to die for them. But it is important to explain further.