God’s Heart for the Nations

Taking the truth about God to all peoples of the world is not just a “New Testament idea.” God has always had a heart for the nations, reaching out to them from Genesis to Revelation.

GENESIS – Through you all the families of the earth shall be blessed. (12:3)

EXODUS – For all the earth is mine and you shall be to me a Kingdom of Priests. (19:5-6)

LEVITICUS – The stranger who sojourns with you shall be to you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself. (19:34)


JOSHUA – For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over…. so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty. (4:23-24)

RUTH – Entreat me not to leave you or to return from following you; for where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge; your people will be my people, and your God my God. (1:16)

I SAMUEL- This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand…. that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. (17:46)

I KINGS – Thus King Solomon excelled all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom. And the whole earth sought the presence of Solomon to hear his wisdom, which God had put into his mind. (10:23-24)

II KINGS – So now, O Lord our God, save us, I beseech thee, from his hand, so that all kingdoms of the earth may know that thou, O Lord, art God alone. (19:19)

I CHRONICLES – Sing to the Lord, all the earth! Tell of His salvation – day to day. Declare His glory among the nations. (16:23-24)

II CHRONICLES – Likewise when a foreigner; who is not of thy people Israel, comes from a far country for the sake of thy great name, and thy mighty hand…. hear thou from heaven thy dwelling place, and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to thee; in order that all peoples of the earth may know thy name and fear thee. (6:32-33)


PROVERBS – By me (Wisdom) kings reign, and rulers decree what is just; by me princes rule and nobles govern the earth. (8:15-16)

ECCLESIASTES – I know that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it; God has made it so, in order that men should fear before him. (3:14)

ISAIAH – It is too light a thing that you should be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob…. I will give you as a Light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth. (49:6)

JEREMIAH – And this city shall be to me a name of joy, a praise and a glory before all the nations of the earth who shall hear of all the good that I do for them and shall fear and tremble. (33:9)

EZEKIEL – And I will vindicate the holiness of my great name, which has been profaned among the nations, and which you have profaned among them; and the nations will know that I am the Lord when through you I vindicate my holiness. (36:23)

DANIEL – And he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him. And to him was given dominion and glory and kingdom, that all peoples, nations and languages should serve him. (7:13-14)


JONAH – And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle? (4:11)

MICAH – He shall judge between many peoples, and shall decide for strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares. (4:3)

NAHUM – The mountains shall quake before Him, the hills melt; the earth is laid waste before Him, the world and all that dwell therein. (1:5)

HABAKKUK – For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea. (2:14)

ZEPHANIAH – For my decision is to gather nations, to assemble kingdoms, to pour out upon them my indignation, all the heat of my anger; for in the fire of my jealous wrath all the earth shall be consumed. (3:8)

HAGGAI – And I will shake all nations, so that the treasures of all nations shall come in, and I will fill this House with splendor. (2:7)

ZECHARIAH – And the Lord will become king over all the earth; on that day the Lord will be one and His name one. (14:9)

MALACHI – For from the rising of the sun to its setting my name shall be great among the nations, and in every place incense shall be offered to my name. (1:11)


MATTHEW – Go, and make disciples of all the nations. (28:1)

MARK – This gospel must be proclaimed to all the nations. (13:10)

LUKE – Repentance and forgiveness of sins must be proclaimed in My name to all nations. (24:47)

JOHN – There are other sheep which are not of this fold. I must go and bring them. Then there will be one Shepherd and one fold. (10:16)

ACTS – You shall be my witnesses to the ends of the earth. (1:8)

ROMANS – We have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of His name among all the nations. (1:5)

I CORINTHIANS – Then comes the end, when Christ delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. (15:24)

II CORINTHIANS – For God was in Christ reconciling the World back to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them. (5:19)

GALATIANS – In Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham has come upon the nations, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. (3:14)

EPHESIANS – His Plan for the fullness of times is to sum up all things in Christ, things in heaven and things on earth. (1:10)

PHILIPPIANS – That every knee should bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. (2:10)

COLOSSIANS – The Gospel has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and growing. (1:6)

I THESSALONIANS – Your faith in God has gone forth everywhere. (1:8)

II THESSALONIANS – The Lord will be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance upon those who do not know God and upon those who do not obey the gospel. (1:7-8)

I TIMOTHY – Christ was manifested in the flesh, vindicated in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory. (3:16)

II TIMOTHY – I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom; preach the Word. (4:1)

TITUS – The grace that brings salvation to all men has appeared. (2:14)


I JOHN – And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent His Son as the Savior of the world. (4:14)

II JOHN – For many deceivers have gone out into the world, men who will not acknowledge the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. (vs. 7)

JUDE – To the only God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. (vs. 25)

REVELATION – Worthy art thou to take the scroll and to open its seals, for thou hast slain and by thy blood didst ransom men for God from every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and hast made them a kingdom and priests to our God. And they shall reign on the earth. (5:9-10)


  • “The Global Thread through Scripture” is on a number of sites with no mention of the original author. That article has one verse from each of the 66 books of the Bible to illustrate God’s mention of the nations throughout Scripture. To change the message to focus more specifically on God’s heart for the nations, I selected 45 verses from the original document.
  • The graphic and the Scripture references for this post are used by permission from South Orlando Baptist.

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