In the Book of Revelation, the Apostle John wants to make clear that we understand that among the saved, sealed and delivered are people from every nation, tribe, and tongue. God is going to see to it.
The inclusion of people from every nation, tribe,
and tongue means that God completely keeps His Genesis 12 covenant with Abraham when God promised him, “in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” God is a covenant-making, promise-keeping God. What God says He will do, He will do. The Egyptians couldn’t stop Him. The rebellion of His own people couldn’t stop Him. The Babylonians couldn’t stop Him. Thanks to third day resurrection, the death of God’s only Son on the cross couldn’t stop Him. Roman and Jewish persecution of the Church couldn’t stop Him. A worldly and corrupt Church across the ages couldn’t stop Him. Religious wars couldn’t stop Him. Hitler couldn’t stop Him. The Soviet Empire couldn’t stop Him. The expulsion of missionaries from China during their Communist revolution couldn’t stop Him. The almost impossible to get to places in the world can’t stop Him. The decline of the Western Church can’t stop Him. ISIS can’t stop Him. And in the last days, even the worst tribulation in world history, the devil’s best shot, and the beast’s war on the saints, won’t stop Him either—because persons from every nation, tribe, and tongue will be gathered around God’s throne to worship Him forever.
This means that God wastes no era or culture in the history of the world. If every nation, tribe, and tongue is present, that means that God found a way to save and redeem people from every culture in history. I don’t know how God does this; I just know that He has and that He does.
This is incredibly good news! Because it also means that mission efforts are never in vain. The fact that God’s Word never returns with empty hands will be proved out around His throne in heaven. “Every nation, tribe and tongue” is more than a description; it’s an announcement: God’s mission will be accomplished! And we’ll hear “Praise God” in the languages of all the places we have invested time and energy in mission: Shōsan no kami (Japanese), Alhamd allah (Wolof, Arabic), Alabar a Dios (Spanish), Jay Bhagavaan (Hindi), Dieu louange (French), Slava Bogu (Russian, Serbian), Wocazeyal ya wakatanka (Lakota Sioux), Prys die Here (Afrikaans), and on and on, in all the languages found in the world.
So, let’s keep at the work as long as God gives us breath. Every hour you give, every prayer you pray, every dollar you spend, is not in vain. God will get His mission accomplished. God will see to it that people from every nation, tribe, and tongue will praise Him around His throne forever. And you and I will take some joy in knowing that God used our prayers, our giving, and our going to help get them there.
(JOHN SCOTT MCCALLUM II)