Humble, faithful people

The people of God are everywhere, but sometimes you must look carefully. Within large and flourishing churches, and in small, scattered groups, you’ll find humble, faithful people who, having God’s Holy Spirit within, live their lives quite contrary to the norms of “this world”. They are saints. They reflect the light of Jesus in all they are. They have, in the words of scripture, crossed over from death to life.

These are the people with whom God fellowships. And they should be your friends as well. They are loosely defined corporately, as the “church without borders” is bigger than you may imagine and spread further afield than you might know. They are the very reason the world hasn’t yet sunken into the abyss of war and pestilence.

One faithful community, who in looking to Jesus for leadership, wrote this on their website:

We live in a time when many of the faithful have been scattered. The darkness of our world and the coldness of so many religious leaders make it a challenge for God’s children to find safe pastures. We believe God will provide the shepherds. We believe those leaders provided by God will be different than those who came before. Less invested in corporate mentality, less interested in control, more given to loving leadership, more generous in service. Less arrogant, less contentious, more humble, more patient with the imperfections of their brethren.

If this speaks to you, then you understand something others may not. You’re among friends, and definitely a part of the success story. And what’s more, you’re probably able to help others in search of safe pasture. It was Jesus who said, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.” (John 10:27-28 NIV)

John T Klassek

He’s coming

Jesus is coming. That’s what He said.

Do we believe it? Some do, most don’t.

Most of us have little idea of what lies just ahead; the news and events in our world will be momentous – because Jesus said He’s coming back but this time with power and might, fury and judgment.

Are we ready?

Rationally thinking it through

Over the years we have produced hundreds of short gospel films, mailed out thousands of free CDs and DVDs, and are now distributing hundreds of free copies of “Hope of the Resurrection“.

More recently we have been engaging people in the street in conversations they probably wouldn’t otherwise have. For example, at our market stall displaying copies of the “Hope of the Resurrection” book, we put a working model of a V twin steam engine in the centre of the display table. People who wouldn’t otherwise be interested in a “free book” came and wanted to talk about steam engines – fascinated by the working model on display. They agreed that it took precise engineering and careful machining to produce this engine, in other words, every rational person has to admit that the engine had a creator, a designer, and engineer.

At the end of one such day, my voice wore quite hoarse explaining that we are the product of an awesome Creator, Designer and Engineer – that there is no other logical explanation to life. Many agreed.

Yet others were simply impressed by the steam engine itself.

The short film “Steam” is well worth your look.

John T Klassek


The Sabbath Rest


Scientists predict that in approximately four billion years’ time, the sun will run out of the hydrogen that fuels it. As a result of the enormous gravitational pull inward, it will begin to collapse in on itself. The sun will then reach a point of critical mass, whereupon it will expand to become a red giant, and in doing so destroy not only the earth but the entire solar system.

The Bible also predicts that one day the earth will be destroyed by fire. God says that beyond that there will be a new heaven and new earth.

What does this have to do with the Sabbath? It’s all about time.

The weekly Sabbath rest is more than just a reminder that as physical humans we’re bound by constraints of space and time. It’s about holiness, it’s about REST, and it’s about being at one with God.

When this earth, as we know it, no longer exists, neither will the current parameters of days and nights, weeks, months or the years that help govern our passage through time.

At the beginning of the known era of humanity, there are two things that are intriguing in the Genesis account of creation.

Firstly, mankind was created after God’s own “image and likeness”. Thus, we were made with a capacity for relationships, were made to be creative, to have hopes and dreams. In other words, we have a mind that compares to nothing else in the known created world.

And, secondly, the creation week was concluded by the Great God (who doesn’t weary) by resting from all the work He had done. He set the seventh day apart, and made it holy. Later, Jesus Christ would give greater insight into why this was.

One of the things we learn from the creation week is that we’re moulded after the Godkind. One particular and obvious difference, however, is that, unlike God, we’re bound by the constraints of time and space, and as God told Adam and Eve, they would one day “surely die”. It was God who instituted a seven-day cyclic pattern at the beginning of the “human era” to assist, it seems, in marking the passing of time. But with that passing of time God included an “escape clause” picturing rest, for God told Adam (and Eve in similar manner after they had sinned) that his life would be characterised by labour — by the sweat of the brow, and further depicted by “thorns and thistles” (Gen. 3:17-19).

This was fascinating material and a road of discovery for a young boy growing up in one of the Churches of God. The passing of time, as marked by the weekly, seventh day Sabbath rest, was celebrated in our family home by a special Friday-night mealtime. Mum would cook a special dinner, using shiny cutlery and our finest crockery. Sometimes she would place a small vase with some fresh flowers from her extensive garden. Dad would offer us children a small glass of wine. He also rehearsed a point that Jesus had made: that “the Sabbath was made for man” (and not just for the Jews). (Mark 2:27)

Thus each passing week the Sabbath would be a natural reminder that God had created everything, and that along with our toil He promises us rest. When the Ten Commandments were given to ancient Israel, God again reminded his people about the creation of the Sabbath at the beginning of the human era. “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy,” God said. Then God elaborated: “For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” (Exodus 20:11)

Despite the toil in our often mundane routine of earning a living, God wanted mankind to taste, to appreciate and to value the concept of rest. Jesus’ compelling words ring out for all time when He exemplified the Sabbath rest by saying: “Come to me all ye who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

In time, I also learned what God accomplished through the coming of Jesus Christ. I learned about the spiritual rest found only in Jesus. I learned that all things have their fulfillment in Him. And as a result I benefitted enormously from the anticipated weekly time of rest, worship and fellowship. The Sabbath became recognised in our family not as some kind of legalistic old covenant appendage, but as a treasured gift of the Lord, breaking the yoke of slavery. The words “Thy Kingdom come…” often fittingly featured in Sabbath evening prayer. There was a yearning in our hearts for the passing of time, when the ultimate rest for all mankind would be fulfilled.

Then it was with interest that I read of Jesus’ encounters with the misled Pharasaical application of the law. The Jews in their zeal had turned a day of rest into a burdensome day, thus missing the point of what true rest was all about. Today, we live with the opposite extreme in our western society: there is little demarcation between the holy and the profane. (But that’s another subject altogether).

Jesus chose the Sabbath on several occasions to confront the Jewish religious leaders. He said that “the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath” (Matthew 12:8), and that it is “lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” He used their own limited understanding of law to chastise their hard-heartedness and blindness.

The Pharisees reasoned that He could have chosen any other day of the week to heal; on one occasion we read where He asked those (critically) watching Him whether “it is lawful to heal on the Sabbath.” Jesus chose to heal, to bring rest to those “in bondage,” within the framework of the Sabbath. In one reference to healing on the Sabbath day, He said: “My Father is working, and I must do the will of Him who sent me.”

The Sabbath rest as exprienced in the Churches of God today is all about Jesus Christ and His work. It was made by Him, it foreshadowed Him, it represents Him, and it exemplifies His work and will. The Sabbath can be an expression of Christ-centredness. In today’s frenetic, secular lifestyle, it can also be a dynamic part of discipleship: being prepared to forego all and follow Christ, whatever the cost, whether it be social life, weekend sports, or work. It’s a recognition that enjoying an extra special Friday-night meal as an expression of God’s love to your family amidst the fine food, laughter, learning, and the rehearsed hope of a better world.

The Sabbath rest is a gift of the Lord. It’s a gift to man. It marks the passing of time, but more than that, it points us to a time yet future when holiness will transcend all, and all will find rest.

Regarding the future of the cyclic hours and days, months and seasons, which include the weekly Sabbath, Jesus Himself tells us that one day there will be no night, with no need for the sun or moon, for the old (current) earth and heaven will have ceased to be (Revelation 21).  We gain a glimpse that there will be a new earth and a new heaven where God Himself will be the light. The old sun and the solar system of which the earth is now a part will have long been forgotten. At that time the physical Sabbath rest will have finally served its purpose, and we gain a glimpse of this time from the writings of a prophet of old on this subject:

“As the new heavens and the new earth that I make will endure before me,” declares the LORD, “so will your name and descendants endure. From one New Moon to another and from one Sabbath to another, all mankind will come and bow down before me,” says the LORD. (Isaiah 66:22-23 NIV)

Written by John T Klassek

Buried Treasure

After many months in production, yesterday we finally uploaded an exciting new short film, “Buried Treasure”.

“Buried Treasure” retells the account of a man finding an ancient stash of buried treasure. He had never seen anything like this before! Broken pottery, gold coins, pearls and diamonds worth millions.

The potential success of this short gospel film is in the story. Since uploading the media streams yesterday, by this morning we were amazed at the phenomenal response.

Film insight: Now, my Dad has never owned a Ferrari, never wanted to, nor is likely to. However, in making the film appeal to a wider audience, modern cinematography skills have enabled us to include a scene with my Dad and “his” Ferrari parked in our driveway.

You will no doubt enjoy this film! Simply go to or

Our new book “Hope of the Resurrection” has also been a remarkable success over the past two months since it was launched. If you haven’t received your free copy, please don’t hesitate to order one now.

On behalf of the MessageWeek team, thanks for your interest and support.

John Klassek

A Holy Discontent

The underlying fabric of our great country has experienced dramatic change over the past 40 or so years.

The towns and cities that were pioneered often were denoted by their numerous church spires. Today, our housing estates are characterised by shopping centres and recreational venues. Once Saturdays or Sundays usually consisted of church time followed by family lunches; today we’re legislating seven day trading. As a boy I heard about “the theory of evolution”; in the classroom today it is taught as fact. Public meetings used to give credence to God; today we instead pay tribute to indigenous culture and tradition – often spoken in their unfamiliar language. I remember the taboo subject of homosexuality regarded among my peers some 40 years ago as absolutely abhorrent; today we celebrate gay mardi-gras parades as expressions of a healthy and dynamic culture.

We listen to politicians and ethicists discuss abortion and euthanasia as if it were a fundamental right, and we decry churchmen who might dare suggest otherwise.

Once Christian family values were accepted as the underlying foundation to our constitution and Western democratic values and freedoms. Today, our youth have never heard the stories of Noah, Moses or Jesus. The Bible as literature, history, religion or culture doesn’t belong anymore to our school curricula. Our various media today, however, are more likely to feature Buddhist or indigenous values than the Christian heritage that has shaped the emergent face of Western civilisation.

“We are now a secular nation,” a prominent politician echoed earlier this year. And we indeed are, or so it seems. The question that should bother us is, why has all this change been so apparently successful?

Is anyone to blame that millions of infants each year, for example, are killed before they can gasp their first breath of fresh air? Perhaps some of the fault for this onslaught of change may rest on the social upheaval and catalyst that came out of World War II. The world could never be the same again. Perhaps our media, responsible for occupying our evening television viewing with violence and “rated” immorality might share some of the blame for rising crime rates. Perhaps the advances of science and technology, often touted as the panacea for all our problems, has become a defacto god of sorts?

No, the blame doesn’t rest with the politicians, ethicists, media moguls, abortion specialists, scientists or our legislators. The blame rests on our churchmen – pastors and preachers who by large have become complicit by their silence. This is my holy discontent.

“Cry aloud, spare not, lift up your voice like a trumpet and show my people their sins,” God urged a prophet to proclaim to an ancient people not unlike ourselves.

Where are the pastors and preachers and leaders that might hold righteous sway in our great country? Are there any brave men and women left who might shape our moral conscience for the better by giving voice to a Godly perspective? Are there only a few leaders who speak just the truth (and not spin, alias lies) nowadays?

We shouldn’t be surprised. Didn’t a wise man once say that there’s nothing new under the sun? Take for example, an excerpt from a letter written by a senior pastor to a young minister some 2000 years ago – it could almost be speaking of our day:

For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. (2 Timothy 4:3-4)

“We evolved,” say our teachers.

Isaiah repeated God’s words:

O my people, your guides lead you astray; (Isaiah 3:12)

Our church leaders have failed us, and they have failed our nation. In their silence, they have not fearlessly spoken truth. Instead, they have acquiesced to the falsehood that the “ten commandments have been done away with”.

What will the next 40 years bring? A golden age of secularism, previously attempted by Hitler and Stalin and other despots? We have the freedom to choose.

See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction. For I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the LORD your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess. But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them, I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live long in the land… This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life, and he will give you many years in the land… (Deuteronomy 30:15-20 NIV)

We would do well to listen to the urgent voices of history.

Is this your holy discontent, too?

 By John Klassek