Our close connection with Jesus through His death and resurrection was explained by Apostle Martin Schnaufer in a divine service conducted on 3rd May 2020. The service was broadcasted via YouTube to the District Church of South Germany. Bishop Urs Heiniger assisted in the service.
The text word was taken from Romans 6:4-5: ‘Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection’.
Beginning his sermon, Apostle Schnaufer encouraged all not to stop sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ regardless of the changing circumstances around us, just as the early Christians persisted. “Some things may not be working the way wanted” he said, “but we must not stop placing Jesus at the centre of our lives. Let us be connected and feel connected among each other and with Jesus Christ, and always feel His presence in our lives.”
Dwelling on Apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans in the text word, Apostle Schnaufer explained that through our baptism, our original sins are washed away and we become a part of the body of Jesus Christ. “We cannot be more connected to Jesus than to be a part of His body” he said.
Our likeness and connection with Jesus also requires a duty on our part. Using the confirmation vow as an explanation, we are required to:
* renounce the works of the evil one at all times
* stay faithful to Jesus Christ to our very end
“We are human and we cannot live without sin, but Jesus invites us to fight against evil works because we have been connected to Him through baptism” said the Apostle. “Just as the early Apostles, we cannot stop following Jesus, even though we experience difficult times.” Jesus Himself is a perfect example of the gospel for us in word and deed. He stayed fulfilled His task to the end despite the very difficult challenges He faced.
“To be united with Jesus Christ in death through baptism also means to be united with Him in the resurrection through baptism” he further elaborated. “Just as we became same with Him through death, so shall we also become like Him in glory.” The resurrection of Jesus Christ gives us hope that we shall be like Him at the end of time.
Bringing his sermon to a close, Apostle Schnaufer encouraged the online congregation that our rebirth and unity with Jesus Christ through baptism also strengthens us to act and fulfill God’s will, knowing for sure He will return for us and we shall be glorified in Him. “We do not only want to die with Him, but also resurrect with Him (at the first resurrection).” he concluded.