After being delayed for approximately 2 years due to the covid-19 pandemic, Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider was finally able to visit the children of God in Argentina. He was accompanied by all the District Apostles and District Apostle Helpers from around the world in a Pentecost Divine Service at our central church in Buenos Aires.
“Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” Chief Apostle used this Bible verse from 1 Corinthians 3:16 to base the service.
Exactly the same gift
“For me, they [The District Apostles and the District Apostle Helpers] represent all the children of God, all the New Apostolic christians worldwide,” Chief Apostle said at the start of his ministry referring to the presence of all the District Apostles and District Apostle Helpers. In some countries, God’s children live in peace. But some have to deal with war. In one country we have many members, in another only a few. Some of God’s children live longer, others short. Some have immense talent, others have nothing.
“But on Pentecost we celebrate and commemorate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. And that’s the great thing in the story.” Every child of God who is reborn out of water and Spirit has the same gift: the gift of the Holy Spirit. “And thus they have received the possibiity to be transformed into the image of Christ, they have been given the possibility to enter the kingdom of God as firstlings.” God gave us the same gift to enter into His kingdom. “And that’s the great comfort of Pentecost.”
The church as the temple of God
Pentecost is the birthday of the church of Christ, the believers gathered and received the Holy Spirit. The Apostle Paul here described the church as a temple of God where every believer is a stone that God has put into the building.
In the Old Testament, the temple of God was the place where they could meet God to praise Him. When they were attacked by the enemy they also came to the temple of God. They also asked His forgiveness by offering their sacrifices.
In the new covenant, the temple of God is also a place to praise God, we come to the divine services to meet God, we praise and glorify God, we make sacrifices and do good to others. We also come together to ask God for help and deliver us from our enemies. We also come to ask for forgiveness and God also hears our request. “We don’t have to bring sacrifices to obtain forgiveness, because […] His sacrifice is eternally valid for all man.”
God is present in the midst of His church
The temple also illustrates that God is still at work in His church. As Christians, it is our mission to spread the word that Jesus Christ is not just a story. He is the Living One and continues to work for our salvation. “Because God is with us, He lives in our heart and we want to please God and not to please man. […] We want to give the evidence that God lives in our heart.”
“All of us, we are called to contribute with our gifts and our strength to make sure that in the future too the gospel will be proclaimed,” Chief Apostle said. We all have different abilities and gifts, but they can complement each other when we use them to serve Christ.
“For sure we cannot build the church, this temple as in the human way. Because if we build it in the human way then everybody will make sure ‘it must be comfortable for me’. God says, ‘okay, you’re in charge in the building of the temple but according to My plan.’”
The perfect fellowship in the new creation
The church as seen today is still under construction – there are many imperfections that are visible. “The temple [church] will be definitively achieved in the new creation, when all man who believe in Jesus Christ, who has followed Him, all those who have been accepted by God will live in perfect eternal fellowship with God in the new creation. But what a grace, we don’t have to wait so long, we are waiting for the return of Christ right now,” Chief Apostle concluded.