To many Christians, Advent commemorates the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. However, as New Apostolics, Advent also reminds us of the imminent return of our Lord Jesus Christ, to fetch His bride. This requires preparation on our part. How then do we prepare? Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider provided the guide in a live transmission divine service he conducted on Sunday December 8th 2019 (second Sunday of Advent) from our church in Fellbach, Germany.
The Chief Apostle read a text from John 1:15, ‘John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me is preferred before me, for He was before me.”’
“The Advent joy should even become greater in our hearts today. We occupy ourselves with the arrival of Jesus Christ as a man to gather us unto Himself. God fulfills His promises. He sent His Son as a child, He shall return again”, remarked the Chief Apostle as he begun the sermon.
The Chief Apostle emphasized that, like John the Baptist, we have also been sent to prepare the way for the coming of our Lord. He admonished members to allow the divine services, where we encounter the Lord Jesus Christ, to leave permanent effects on our souls. “To encounter the Lord, we need to prepare ourselves” he stated. He further admonished members to see each divine service as part of the ripening process for the return of Jesus Christ.
“We also want to prepare for His return; He said He will come, and certainly He will do so” stressed the Chief Apostle. According to the Chief Apostle, to prepare for the return of the Lord means to:
Serve God, our neighbour and the congregation. We must be willing to serve just as Jesus served on earth.
Have a trusting and loving relationship with God. We must maintain a relationship with God just as Jesus and His Father; a relationship of complete trust and confidence.
Help others attain salvation. We must be witnesses of Christ to our family, friends and our neighbours.
Live by the gospel in word and in deed. We may never be like Jesus on earth (true Man and true God), but we must grow in His life and relationship to His Father; we must grow into the image of Jesus.
“Let us prepare for the day of the Lord shall surely come as promised” concluded the Chief Apostle.
As part of the service, Apostles Volker Kühnle and Wolfgang Zenker were placed into retirement whiles District Evangelist Andreas Sargant was ordained an Apostle.
The Chief Apostle was assisted by Apostles Klene (Netherlands) and Mutschler.