A preparation Transmission Divine Service for the departed with Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider from Karlsruhe on Sunday, June 28, 2020 at 8 a.m. local time; was based on the means of providing salvation to the living and the dead by God.
Chief Apostle red a text out of Psalm 146: 7-8 “…The Lord gives freedom to the prisoners. The Lord opens the eyes of the blind; The Lord raises those who are bowed down; The Lord loves the righteous."
Chief Apostle Schneider started by expressing thankfulness to God for the unusual Divine Service, with nearly empty church except connecting congregations via phone, television, computer from homes. An image of a big congregation is visualized. Some would partake of the Holy Communion; others receive by faith in humbleness and confidence in the Lord to be free from sin.
Freedom from the bondage of sin
The text talks about salvation of God. Souls are condemned in the beyond because of sin, like prisoners of war brought into exile without freedom. Sinners are not free as they are bounded in sin. Jesus liberates sinners, even in the beyond from the bondage of sin. Jesus overcame the evil and has power to free all individually based on faith.
Peter’s freedom from prison was as a result of him following giving instruction by the Angel; to prepare and follow. The chain fell, door opened and God set him free.
Jesus died in order to liberate us from sin to fellowship and access the sacraments. It is a process to get freedom (not mass freedom), but according to the measures set by God. The effort to liberate mankind from force of sin via the divine plan of salvation. Opening the eyes of the blind is a picture of redemption.
The disciples are not to be blind in the mission of Jesus. Thinking that all problems will be solved by going to church is a spiritual blindness - believing does not mean there is no sorrow. In an effort to clearly see, one has to first remove the powder in his eyes before taking the plank from your neighbor eyes - understand his own weakness. Holy Spirit directs us, opens our eyes to look up to Jesus. Comparing with our neighbors, not seeing their needs is also blindness. We must be careful not to be blind in our behavior in the family, country and congregation but rather be responsible to serve and care. Do to others as you want others to do you.
The Holy Spirit has poured out love in our heart for the neighbors, to treat them nicely. He wants us to be redeemed with love in our heart. This is the act of healing spiritual blindness.
Support for the oppressed
The living and the dead have the possibility for redemption. To bring comfort, hope, conservation, raise up those who are weak in the congregations. We talk to the living and do something for them – for the dead we intercede on their behalf during the service for the departed.
For the corona period, we don’t complain or give up because we are not contacted. We don’t see each other, come together; no one is urged to go to church. With love in our heart there is no complaining / ask questions. Soul caring is a blessing of God. Let us call our brothers and sisters to check how they are doing in order to make them feel love...
Jesus loves all but preference is giving to the righteous. Believe in Jesus mission is righteousness and God loves the righteous.
District Apostle Michael Ehrich
It is lovely that we are all connected. We plea to look to the needy, not to pass them by. We experience lot of hustling and bustling to survive. Jesus revealed Himself to liberate humanity, so let us be bounded in Jesus by doing according to the commandments.
Corona affects our fellowship, there is lacking need to meet each other – District Apostle mentioned a sister who wrote about joy because of returning again to church service / fellowship with brothers and sisters. If possible let’s look for fellowship. Only God grants salvation, so we pray against next Sunday for those in the beyond to be in our fellowship, for their complete deliverance from sin.