No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him. (John 6:44)
This verse clearly implies that God does not draw everyone to Jesus. However, this verse alone does not explain why God declines to draw certain people.
Some assume that God does not draw certain people to Jesus because God, in some ultimate sense, does not desire their salvation. However, there is nothing in John 6.44 to support such an assumption. Furthermore, this assumption conflicts with the message of John 3.16-17:
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
These verses seem to teach that God loves everyone and truly desires everyone to be saved. Nevertheless, some have suggested that the “world” of John 3.16-17 does not encompass every individual person; they argue that this term is only meant to signify humanity in general. However, when John 3.16-17 is compared with John 12.47, it becomes clear that the term the "world” is intended to include everyone, even those individuals who ultimately do not come to Jesus.
If anyone hears My words and does not believe, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world.
Why does Jesus not judge the unbeliever? Because he did not come to judge the “world.” This line of reasoning is only valid if unbelievers are understood to be included in the “world.” Therefore, we must conclude that God does indeed love all people and does indeed desire the salvation of all people.
Why then does God not draw every person to Jesus? The answer becomes clear if we keep reading:
No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall all be taught by God.’ Therefore everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me. (John 6.44-45)John 6.45 clarifies that to be drawn by God to Jesus involves hearing and learning from the Father. Therefore, if we seek to determine why certain men are not drawn by God to Jesus, we must ask why certain men do not hear and learn from the Father. Is it because the Father has declined to speak to them and teach them, or is it because these men have rejected the word and instruction of the Father?
I believe the context allows us to answer this question with confidence. Jesus has just rebuked his opponents for rejecting the testimony that God had given to them in the OT:
And the Father Himself, who sent Me, has testified of Me. You have neither heard His voice at any time, nor seen His form. But you do not have His word abiding in you, because whom He sent, Him you do not believe. You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life. I do not receive honor from men. But I know you, that you do not have the love of God in you. I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, him you will receive. How can you believe, who receive honor from one another, and do not seek the honor that comes from the only God? Do not think that I shall accuse you to the Father; there is one who accuses you—Moses, in whom you trust. For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote about Me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words? (John 5.37-47)
In rejecting the words of Jesus, these Jews revealed that they had already rejected the words of Moses. Jesus never implies that they were predestined to reject Moses. He is simply explaining that their rejection of his own words stems from a prior rejection of God's revelation in Moses. Because they did not believe Moses, they could not believe Jesus.
We are getting at a concept here which is central to the message of John: those who have rejected God reject Jesus; those who have accepted God accept Jesus. This concept is interwoven with the christology of John. It is precisely because Jesus comes from God and speaks the words of God that a rejection of Jesus reveals a prior rejection of God and of God’s word. This theme can be traced throughout the entire gospel, but consider these few examples:
If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God. (John 8:42)
He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God. (John 8:47)
He who hates me hates my Father also. (John 15:23)
In conclusion, John 6.44-45 does not teach that God only desires to save select individuals. Such a notion conflicts with the message of John 3.16-17. John 6.44-45 simply teaches that those who reject Jesus do so because they have not "heard and learned from the Father."