“No one can hold back the morning”

How can we keep our hope alive even if the night is pitch dark and the morning far away? Two people showed that it can be done. They saw their hope come true. We can learn a lot from them.

“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word I do hope. My soul waits for the Lord more than those who watch for the morning—yes, more than those who watch for the morning” (Psalm 130: 5–6). Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider used this well-known Bible text in a divine service in Berlin (Germany) on 16 December 2018.

Right at the beginning, the Chief Apostle presented two role models: Simeon and Anna. Many Jews probably believed in the promised Messiah, but Simeon and Anna actually witnessed the promise come true and saw the Saviour. “They not only believed that God would send the Redeemer, they waited for Him day after day.” Why was their hope so strong?

Maranatha! A 2,000-year-old promise

Just how important an answer is, is shown by looking into the present. Christians have been promised the return of the Lord. “Maranatha, the Lord comes. This is what drove the first Apostles and Christians on. But time passed and nothing happened.”

“And then the time came when God once again sent Apostles. Since then Apostles have been working on earth and preparing souls for the coming of the Lord. However, a lot of time has passed since the reoccupation of the Apostle ministry, and the Lord still has not come.”

The example of Simeon and Anna

“What can we do so that this hope remains alive in us?” the Chief Apostle asked, referring to Simeon and Anna. “They fostered fellowship with God. Let’s follow their example.”

  • The Bible tells us that the Holy Spirit was with Simeon: “The Holy Spirit lives in us. We have received the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit speaks with us: the gospel is preached to us through the Holy Spirit. There where the Holy Spirit can develop, prayers become more intense: “Come soon, Lord!”
  • Simeon wanted to align His life with God’s will: “Let us too seek fellowship with God in this way. Those who keep the commandments of God constantly experience that God is with them. Jesus Himself promised this.”
  • The prophetess Anna never left the temple. She wanted to be close to God day and night. “We can experience this closeness to God when we celebrate Holy Communion.” Those who want to develop in accordance with the example of Jesus, receive the strength they need for this in Holy Communion.
  • Anna served God constantly. Anna served God constantly. “How can we serve the Lord? By serving our neighbour. Paul said that we should serve one another, do good to our neighbour, and begin by doing so in our own congregation.”
  • Anna went to proclaim the good news. “Let us profess our faith in the gospel in word and deed. Those who profess belief in Jesus Christ, live in this close fellowship with God.”

“No matter how long the night is,” Chief Apostle Schneider said, “it is a reality: the morning will dawn, the Lord will come. I am waiting for Him. No one can hold the morning back.”

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Andreas Rother
Germany, Chief Apostle, Divine service