Jesus loves people. He made them diverse and dispersed them around the globe. Groups of people naturally hub around what they have in common, forming an identity and creating culture. Cultures represent such things as shared heritage, family systems, language, food, clothing, mutual interests and needs, and similar aims. These traits bind a group of people together and are reinforced by the way they relate to each other over time. Some people have Jesus’ heart for certain groupings of people and they are called by Him to lay down their lives in service for them. Some might be called to their “own people”.
Each people grouping has been given a unique deposit from God that accentuates certain attributes of His character and conveys a distinctiveness of call. Have you ever considered that God has a call upon groups of people just like He does on individuals? Have you noticed that through various people groupings certain things are created, developed and distributed to serve and bless other peoples?
As a simple example, consider on of our favorite topics—food! Can you imagine life without tacos, guacamole, chips and salsa—we have to thank Mexico! What about lasagna? It originated among Greeks and Romans, and after being a lost dish for decades it resurfaced in its present form through the Italians! How about Chinese food?
On another front, have you ever noticed how the trains run like clockwork in the nations of the Germans and Swiss—where some of the best clocks and watches in the world are made! Every people grouping has God-deposited “redemptive gifts” that are part of their unique call are intended to bless others. What are the redemptive gifts of the people you’re a part of and for which you were called?
We must remember that God desires for us to celebrate the uniqueness of His diverse cultures. In this context, we must also remember that God’s ways always trump culture. In other words, if a particular aspect of culture doesn’t align to God’s ways as revealed in Scripture, it must be repented of and rightly aligned to His ways. Satan will do his very best to spoil and pervert the redemptive gifts of God within a culture. As a matter of fact, one of the greatest ways to discover the redemptive gifts of a culture is to locate where the enemy has worked hard to damage or destroy it. It may be within this very area that we’ll find the truth of how God intends to use them to be a blessing to the world!
Are you called by God to give yourself in the service of a certain people grouping? If so, consider what attributes of His character He desires to put on full display through them. What is their calling as a people? What are their redemptive gifts and how has Satan tried to hinder them from fully expressing them? And in this context, are you making disciples among them in such a way that they are reproducing the character, ways, and mission of Jesus in others—both among them own people and beyond?
What a glorious day it will be when we experience together the scenario foreshadowed in Revelation 5:9” “And they sand a new song, saying: ‘Worthy are You to take the scroll and to open its seals, for You were slain, and by Your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation…’”
Reflection Points: the Character of God and Peoples
- He’s made us in His image (Genesis 1:26-27)
- He’s made people from all nations (Psalm 86:9)
- He’s the Redeemer of nations (Revelation 5:9)
- He’s the disciple of nations (Matthew 28:18-20)
- He’s worshipped by kings/nations (Revelation 21:22-26)
- He’s Messiah to the Jews (Luke 1:30-33)