One of the most precious statements in all of Scripture is “God is love” (1 John 4:8). But in our limited human understanding, we sometimes believe this means that God loves everyone and everything all the time. This is not so, because the Bible also tells us that God hates many things. He hates idolatry (Deuteronomy 12:31, 16:22; Psalm 31:6) because the worship of false gods robs Him of the praise and glory that belong to Him alone. Proverbs 6:16-19 tell us that God hates seven things: a proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that plots wicked plans, feet hurrying to run to evil, a false witness who speaks lies, and he who causes fighting among brothers. God also hates divorce (Malachi 2:16).
Because God is holy and perfectly righteous, He hates with a pure, holy, righteous hatred. He cannot do otherwise. Neither can He love that which is evil and unholy, and Satan embodies all of that. He is the enemy (1 Peter 5:8); the evil one (Matthew 6:13); the father of lies and a murderer (John 8:44); the accuser of God’s people (Revelation 22:10); the tempter (1 Thessalonians 3:5); proud, wicked and violent (Isaiah 14:12-15); a deceiver (Acts 13:10); a schemer (Ephesians 6:11); a thief (Luke 8:12), and many, many more evil things. He is, in fact, everything that God hates. The heart of Satan is fixed and confirmed in his hatred of God, his judgment is final, and his destruction is sure. Revelation Chapter 20 describes God’s future plan for Satan and love has no part in it.
It is only because we are “partakers of the Divine nature” (2 Peter 1:4) that we are able to love God and others, even our enemies. In our natural (unsaved) state, we are only able to act according to our fallen natures because we belong to the evil one. When we come to Christ in faith, God gives us a new nature (2 Corinthians 5:17)—His righteous and holy nature—and we are then able to love with His love which He has put into our hearts. Then we love that which is good and pure and holy, just as God loves, and we hate sin and evil, just as He hates it. He tells us to love our enemies so that they will repent and turn to Him while there is still time in this age of grace. But Satan will never turn to God and repent, and therefore God will never love him.
Because Satan is the embodiment of evil and everything that is antithetical to the God we love, we cannot love Satan. When Jesus tells us to loves our enemies and pray for those who persecute us (Matthew 5:44), He is referring to other people. We pray for them to come to know God through faith, to believe in Christ and be saved from their sins. We are never told to pray for Satan because there is no chance of his salvation. He does not need faith because he has seen God, knows God and has rejected Him. Therefore, the enemies we love and pray for do not include Satan.
So does God love Satan and should we love him? The answer is absolutely, without a doubt, no. God has already declared the end and demise of Satan in the Bible: “And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever” (Revelation 20:10). God has already determined that there will be no forgiveness for Satan; there will be absolutely no chance of him coming into God’s presence, and the sacrificial love God shows for His children is out of the reach of Satan. Even if it were within his grasp, Satan would spurn it just as he spurned God’s rule in heaven.