I will proclaim the Lord’s decree: He said to me, “You are my son; today I have become your father. Ask me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. You will break them with a rod of iron[b]; you will dash them to pieces like pottery.” Psalm 2:7-9
For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2:6
Recently, I was at a prayer conference in Indonesia, and one of the speakers challenged us to ask God about our inheritance. Which of the nations—from all around the world—was our inheritance? Which of the nations did we dare to say, “Yes, Lord, give me this nation and that nation, and allow me to go there, doing your will, standing with them as You awaken people to the knowledge of who You are?
There were nations that flashed inside my head, and I knew that my own prayer life would take a very new, and active “revival” as I dreamed with God for nations other than my own.
Two truths stood out. First was this: We are seated with Christ in the heavenly realms– even if physically, our feet still touch the earth. This means that just as God the Father has given Jesus the nations as an inheritance, so too can we ask our same Heavenly Father for the nations. By uniting with Jesus; by appropriating our place of being seated with Christ in the heavenly realms, we are in the position to ask our Father. We are in the position to declare truly, “Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth (especially in the nation of ________), as it is in Heaven.”
Why not dream with God for the destiny of nations? We can pray for nations to know God; pray that they embrace their identities as unique in His sight; pray that evil is retrained and that Kingdom good is released in the different spheres of society. In spiritual battle, prayer can be like the air force releasing missiles, allowing for angelic attack to demolish structures that foot soldiers would otherwise find difficult to conquer.
We can ask God to move. We can pray for strategies. Changing nations can start in our prayer closets, and who knows? Perhaps God will allow our feet to touch these places sooner than we think, using our presence there to make people see Him.
It is a remarkable and beautiful thing to dream with God. And He allows us to. I believe He loves it when we do this.
The second truth was this: God the Father starts the challenge of nation-asking by first proclaiming His Fatherhood and Jesus’ sonship: “You are my son. Today I have become your father.” This is important when we ask God for the nations. We ask God, knowing that we are His sons and daughters. Just as Jesus is God’s Son, so too are we loved by our Father in the same way that He loves Jesus. Slaves don’t get inheritances; sons and daughters do. Also, these nations are wounded. They are looking for a Father. They are longing for a Father. They are composed of souls that seek to know a Father’s love.
The reward that our Father has given to Jesus for suffering on the cross is a reward/inheritance that we, too, can take responsibility for. Are we responsible enough to steward our inheritance? To love our inheritance? Do we take the time to find out the needs of the nations? Are we responsible enough to pray for these nations even when we don’t see any initial progress? If God opens a door and makes it clear for us to move to new places—to new nations—are we willing to move, even to risk our lives for Jesus?
It is a challenge. But it is one that I believe aligns with the heartbeat of our Father.
And so it is fitting to end with this challenge: Which of the nations do you want to ask God for as an inheritance? Are you willing to spend time praying for these nations?
May the Lamb receive the reward of His suffering!
Janina Marie Rivera is the Editor-in-Chief of One Voice Magazine, a teacher of world literature, and a student of the Bible. She enjoys reflecting on life’s curve balls and plateaus. She resides in the Philippines, the country known for people who smile a lot.