66. All those with totally-hardened hearts will find God's life-giving glory so unbearable that they will physically separate from Him, the Source of Life.

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” {Romans 12:17, 20}

Jesus said to love your enemies and to pray for those who persecute you. Paul said not to repay anyone’s evil with evil. Yet the way we sometimes talk about the end of the wicked would make it seem like we believe God expects us to act better than Him. As if Jesus wants us to do good to our enemies, even if God is going to execute His. I’m sure you can see how hypocritical it would be if we get to the end of this war and God destroys the ones who have rejected Him. After all this talk of enemy love and repaying evil with good, if we get to the end and God kills people because they don’t love Him, I’d wonder what the point of all of this has been.

Fortunately, the truth is that God isn’t going to repay the evil that has been done to Him with evil. He is going to love His enemies. He is going to do good to those who have persecuted Him. But the Bible reveals what the effect of doing good to your enemies is: it heaps burning coals of fire on their heads. In the here and now, that discomfort can be a good thing. It can cause a person who has been behaving wrongly to repent, and an enemy can be made into a friend.

But at the end, when God is confronted with the host of His children who have so hardened their hearts that there is no longer any hope of restoration, the goodness and love He pours out upon them can not hope to have a healing effect; it will just be torturous. Still, what is God to do? As One who loves all His children—good or bad—with an infinite, everlasting love, He can do nothing except love them. But that light poured out on hearts that have been irrevocably plunged into darkness will be so excruciating that the wicked will long to get away from it. Like caged animals, they will desperately seek to finally have their physical connection to the Source of Life severed. And while nobody can say exactly how they will accomplish that, what we can know for sure is that our God, who is only and always a consuming fire of love, will do nothing except weep as He says goodbye to them for the last time.

If you want to dig deeper—
Matthew 7:21-23
Revelation 2:11
Revelation 20:6, 14
Revelation 21:8