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Why Do We Talk about People Groups?

November 20, 2017 |  By Eric Vess

Why do we talk about people groups so much in missions today?

Throughout the New Testament, Scripture refers to people groups, or “nations” (Greek: ethnos), as the primary way of describing the diversity of human life which God created and for which Jesus Christ was crucified and resurrected.

One of the clearest pictures of this people group diversity is in the seventh chapter of Revelation:

After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Rev 7:9–10 ESV)

The Bible does not see people primarily as citizens of countries, but rather as members of “tribes and peoples and languages.” Evangelization and discipleship among all peoples ’til all hear is therefore of utmost importance.

The words of Jesus define our vision: “And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” ANM has strategically set our highest priority on partnering with more than 250 ministries in 83 countries to reach the remaining unreached. Nearly 7000 people groups (biblical “nations”) are waiting.

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