Lenten Devo #17—Many Nations Will Come
"Thus says the Lord of hosts: Peoples shall yet come, even the inhabitants of many cities. The inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, 'Let usage at once to entreat the favor of the Lord and to seek the Lord of hosts; I myself am going.' Many peoples and strong nations shall come to see the Lord of hosts in Jerusalem and to entreat the favor of the Lord." (Zechariah 20-22)
God never intended for his favor to rest solely upon the Jewish people. Instead, his plan was always that the nation of Israel would draw the peoples of the earth to God. And the reason is because God is not just the God of the Jewish people, but of the whole earth; not just Jerusalem, but all of creation.
Zechariah's picture is of a people who have seen God in Israel, who know what Jesus said to be true, that salvation comes from the Jews. And the beautiful thing is that now the gospel message of salvation is going out to the nations. As Jesus says in that same passage, "The hour is coming when neither on this mountain [in Samaria] nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father... But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth" (John 4:21, 23).
The favor of God now rests upon those who worship him in spirit and in truth—no matter what tribe, nation, or tongue they belong to, and no matter where they are. It is worship from the heart which reflects a heart transformation, the gift of salvation. Those who were once outsiders can be counted among the people of God.
Surely we must pray for those who still remain on the outside. Who are you praying for today?