The COVID-19 pandemic sweeping across the globe prevails and our church activities continue to suffer restrictions. In spite of these, New Apostolics across the world still experience fellowship with God and one another in this difficult time, thanks to technology! For the District Church South Germany, the Palm Sunday divine service on 5th April 2020 was officiated by Apostle Hans-Jürgen Bauer. He was supported by Bishop Jörg Vester. About 490 stations viewed the live transmission (English Channel).
The Apostle read a text from Luke 19:41-42, “Now as He drew near, He saw the city and wept over it, saying, "If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes”.
The special bible reading text for Bible Reading was taken from Mark 11:1-11.
Opening the service, the Apostle remarked that global pandemic has necessitated adjustments to divine services, thus the extraordinary experience without a face-to-face interaction and the celebration of Holy Communion. He entreated members to remain calm and trust in the words of our Lord Jesus Christ: ‘I am with you, even till the end of time’. He further encouraged members to follow the Lord for He shall fulfill His promise of salvation.
Expounding on the text word, the Apostle stated that the Lord Jesus Christ did not rejoice at reception He received upon entering Jerusalem. He was sad about the expectations of the people.
The Apostle stated the people expected Jesus Christ to:
* liberate them from the rule of the Romans;
* perform miracles and;
* re-establish the kingdom of David.
These expectations however were at variance with the purpose and mission of Jesus Christ, which is peace and salvation. “Where wrong expectations exist, there’s always a disappointment”, stressed Apostle Bauer.
He further admonished that our expectations must correspond with the will of God. We should not expect God to:
* perform miracles to better our living conditions – His priority is our eternal life;
* punish our enemies – Jesus’ objective is to deliver us from the evil one;
* grant us salvation based on good works – Jesus grants salvation to the humble and repentant hearts.
He explained that, the Holy Spirit teaches that which is necessary for our peace and salvation; faith in Jesus Christ, repentance and inner renewal.
“Let us not be influenced by the happenings around us. Like Jesus Christ, we want to focus on that which is necessary through the activity of the Holy Spirit”, Apostle Hans-Jurgen Bauer concluded.