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Pray for Unreached People Groups

Pray for Unreached People Groups

When Jesus commanded His followers to “make disciples of all nations” in Matthew 28:19, He was not referring to political nations. The word Jesus used for nations in Greek is “ethne,” from which we get the English word “ethnic.” Jesus commanded us to make disciples from every ethnic people group. In Matthew 24:14, He said, "And this Gospel will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come." Until we accomplish this, the task is unfinished.

Reach Beyond is committed to helping the global Church to make disciples among unreached people groups (UPGs). These are cultures and locations where Jesus Christ is largely unknown, and the church is relatively insufficient to make Him known in its broader population without outside help.  

According to Joshua Project, there are still 7,000 UPGs, making up over 40 percent of the world’s population. The map below shows where the unreached are primarily located, but we also know we have the opportunity to reach displaced people groups in our own countries.

We want unreached people everywhere to hear about Jesus, see Him in action and learn how to follow Him. Because of our strengths in media, Reach Beyond has prayerfully decided to prioritize the 1900 largest unreached people groups of 100,000 or more in population.

Map of Unreached People Groups

Weekly UPG Prayer Focus

Join us in praying for an unreached people group each week.
September 30, 2022

Country: India | Population: 1,200,000 | Language: Korku | Main Religion: Hinduism | Evangelical: Unknown

Korku legends say the god Shiva took the form of a lion and scared their ancestors into the forest. Shiva declared that each family would be named for whatever tree, plant or object they hid under. The Korku love the forest and almost all live in rural areas. They are also known as excellent agriculturalists. The Korku never complain in spite of having much to complain about. As a low status people, they have little income. Many suffer from hunger, malnutrition and exploitation by those in power who take much of what they earn. Pray that the Korku would develop a spiritual hunger that would open their hearts to Jesus. Ask God to send Christian workers to teach them the Gospel. Pray that they would believe that Jesus loves them and that He will ultimately give them justice.

September 23, 2022

Country: Libya | Population: 205,000 | Language: Nafusi | Main Religion: Islam | Evangelical: 0.00%

The Nefusa were Libya’s first inhabitants. They live around the Jabal Nafusah plateau which rises to some 3,200 ft above sea level. The Nefusa live in small villages that were built for defense and can be difficult to reach. They are famous for their homes which have been carved into the sides of hills or dug deep into the ground with rooms surrounding a central shaft of light. The Nefusa have adapted to living in an arid climate where wealth is not measured by land, but by trees. Fig, olive and palm trees are highly valued. It is not unusual for a single tree to be owned by several families or by someone other than the landowner where it stands. The Nefusa are Ibadaya Muslims—a tiny sect which broke away in the 7th century over a dispute on how religious leaders are chosen. The Nefusa hold to many fundamental Islamic beliefs but have some unorthodox customs including mosques that don’t face East towards Mecca. Pray that God would open doors for believers to live and work among the Nefusa and that they would become open to hearing the Gospel. Pray for the very few Nefusa believers—that they would become strong in their faith, grow in numbers and be a light to those around them.

September 16, 2022

Country: India | Population: 10,034,000 | Language: Hindi | Main Religion: Hindu | Evangelical: Unknown

The Gond work in agriculture growing crops like rice, beans and cereals, and raising livestock. They typically live in small communities of 25-30 homes surrounded by farmland. The Gond believe that evil spirits and enemies’ witchcraft cause sickness in their community. To appease the evil spirits, a local high-priest sacrifices a goat in the presence of the community, but not until the goat nods to give its approval. Once the village men have eaten the meat, they will stuff the skin with hay and hang it on the village gate to scare off evil spirits. The Gond also offer sacrifices relative to their harvest —a goat when it is good, a pig if moderate, and a chicken if it is poor. Pray that the Gond would discover how Jesus became the only perfect sacrifice for their sins—once and for all. Pray they would recogize that Jesus is our high priest and it is only through Him that they can be delivered from the evil spirits they fear. Pray that believers would be welcomed in their villages, that they would be receptive to the Good News, and that they would choose to follow Jesus.

September 9, 2022

Country: Ethiopia | Population: 2,058,000 | Language: Afar | Main Religion: Islam | Evangelical: 0.08%

The Afar claim to have descended from Noah’s son Ham. They are a proud people who emphasize strength and bravery. Most Afar are nomads who herd sheep, goats, cattle and camels. They live in camps of oval shaped huts, which are surrounded by thorn barricades to protect them from wild animals and enemy tribesman. Meat and milk are important parts of their diet, and the gift of fresh warm milk to a guest signifies both hospitality and protection. Some Afar continue their centuries-old occupation of harvesting blocks of salt from the Danakil Desert, where daytime temperatures exceed 120°F. The Afar are Muslim, but retain many of their pre-Islamic beliefs and traditions. They believe certain trees and groves hold sacred powers. They give annual offerings to the sea and hold festivals to honor the spirits of the dead, whom they view as being very powerful. The Afar are very relational and expect that those they encounter, whether known or unknown, will sit down with them and discuss what is happening around them. Pray that radio broadcasts to the Afar would open their hearts. Ask God to orchestrate conversations where believers can share the Good News of Jesus. Pray that the Afar would recognize that Jesus is more powerful than the spirits they worship or fear. Pray that they would choose to follow Jesus.

See more Weekly Featured Unreached People Groups:  Alphabetical List or By Date