Healing of the Peoples

by Ed Pousson
South East Asia Coordinator, Joshua Project 2000

National mission leaders in Indonesia recently convened a regional unreached peoples adoption conference featuring 45 unreached people groups. All of these are peoples on the Joshua Project 200 Unreached Peoples list. A number of them were still untargeted by Indonesia ministries. But by the end of the conference, the participants had made commitments to all untargeted groups. Praise God!

The plenary sessions included a message from Ezekiel 47 with Revelation 22, "The Healing of the Peoples," and, on the third evening, a message on "The Ministry of Reconcilation" by an Indonesian prayer leader was given. On that evening, we witnessed representative acts of reconciliation between Christians from some of the people groups that have been shedding blood across ethnic lines recently. Some of these are peoples of the Joshua Project list. I saw before my eyes, the "healing of the peoples," at least in representation. In all, there was identificational repentance and reconciliation between Christian representatives of about 3 or 4 pair of ethnic groups that have recently shed blood across racial lines. There were also quite a number from Ambon repenting (identificationally) on behalf of the Ambonese who have fought with Muslims there recently. Christians from other parts of Indonesia then asked the Ambonese to forgive them for being angry and judgmental towards them.

Ezekiel 47 describes trees along the River of Life whose leaves are for healing. Revelation 22 has the same vision but adds, "the leaves are for the healing of the peoples."Most translations say "nations," but the Greek word is "ethnos" which becomes "ethnic" group in English (probably the closest equivalent). Jesus said in Matthew 24:7 that in the last days "people" (ethnos) would rise up against "people" (ethnos). We have seen an escalation of these ethnic conflicts, violence, and killings in several parts of the world in the last few years, and especially Indonesia. Please continue to pray!

These representative acts of reconciliation in Indonesia are visible demonstrations of the power of the gospel and the blood of Jesus to "break down the dividing wall of hostility" between peoples (Eph. 2:13-16). What Jesus did between Jews and Gentiles in the first century, he will also do between "people" and "people" through the ages until there is "healing" among members of every people, nation, tribe, and language. I saw in Indonesia this past week a preview of Rev. 5:9 and 7:9, where members of every people group are standing in worship together before the throne. May all the glory be to God! Amen.

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