Difference between revisions of "A Discussion with Jason Watkins"

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On December 22, 2019, Jason Watkins, the pastor of Bethel Tabernacle, a message church in Beaufort, South Carolina posted [[A response to Jason Watkins' letter to a believer who has left the message#Jason Watkins' original letter|a letter on Facebook post to a minister who had left the message]] (click [[A response to Jason Watkins' letter to a believer who has left the message#Jason Watkins' original letter|here to read Jasons' original post on Facebook]])
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Tim Kraus, one of the co-hosts of the Off The Shelf podcast, having read Jason Watkins' open letter which stated that no one could produce anything Branham taught which was not aligned with God's Word, sent a message to the Bethel Tabernacle Facebook page with his email address.  Jason contacted Tim with his personal email so they could send email back and forth. 
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Jason told Tim that he would be glad to clarify and explain any Scripture to me that I could present. 
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What follows is a copy of Tim's emails to Jason in which Tim focused on the Scriptural comparisons of what Branham said, and specifically asked Jason for Scriptural definitions and explanations demonstrating the support for Branham's assertion as a prophet of God. 
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After Tim submitted his first email to Jason, he never heard back from him again. 
  
 
The emails below are identical to those sent to Jason Watkins with the following additions:
 
The emails below are identical to those sent to Jason Watkins with the following additions:
  
#Footnote references have been added; and
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#Footnote references have been added
#A few spelling mistakes and typos have been corrected to assist with reading.
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#Some minor formatting has been added to make the text easier to read; and
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#A few minor spelling mistakes and typos have been corrected.<br>
  
 
=Email #1 - Sent April 22, 2020=
 
=Email #1 - Sent April 22, 2020=
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Now, William Branham proclaimed himself a prophet of God over 400 times in his over 1100 sermons. But he also went further.  He told us that he was the Prophet Messenger for the seventh, or Laodicean “church age”.  And in his written work, William Branham told us that none of what he spoke was to be questioned.  Branham went so far as to declare that he was INFALLIBLE:
 
Now, William Branham proclaimed himself a prophet of God over 400 times in his over 1100 sermons. But he also went further.  He told us that he was the Prophet Messenger for the seventh, or Laodicean “church age”.  And in his written work, William Branham told us that none of what he spoke was to be questioned.  Branham went so far as to declare that he was INFALLIBLE:
  
“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.”
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:''“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.”<ref>An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age</ref>
An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age
 
  
 
But let us take a step back from infallibility for the moment.  Let us look first, as the Bereans did, and as Moses, John, Paul, and Jesus Christ instructed us to do, at what was said using God’s authority to see if we can gain some insight into whether William Branham can actually qualify as a true prophet of God.
 
But let us take a step back from infallibility for the moment.  Let us look first, as the Bereans did, and as Moses, John, Paul, and Jesus Christ instructed us to do, at what was said using God’s authority to see if we can gain some insight into whether William Branham can actually qualify as a true prophet of God.
  
 
We can define what we mean when we say “using God’s Authority” first.  There are many within the various message denominations who would agree with Branham’s own writing in An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages book, commonly referred to as CAB.  Those who would take this position are those who would claim that Branham was deity manifest on earth, and that Branham was Christ as Lee Vayle tells us.  These people are extreme as it relates to Branham’s Scriptural authority.  There are also people that claim that while Branham was a good starting point for the modern day but that he didn’t go far enough, and was not ordained to complete the message of the return of Christ.  This denomination of the message, referred to as the SEVEN THUNDERS denominations, believe that their various individual ministers are actually the EIGHTH and CAPSTONE or final “church age” prophet messenger, taking them even further than Lee Vayle to the extreme.  Reviewing your writing and teaching which is readily available on the internet through sources such as your church’s web site, I acknowledge that you do not take the position that Branham was a deity, and that he was subject to human errors and mistakes.  So, for the moment we discount Branham’s statements concerning his infallibility.  But this on its own leads to issues concerning someone who claims to speak with God’s authority when what they say does not align with the Word of God.  This would on its face disqualify Branham as a true prophet of God.  But we will move past that issue for the moment.  For the purpose of this exercise, we will focus our attention on what Branham says using God’s authority as Branham defined it when he says “THAT’S THUS SAITH THE LORD”.
 
We can define what we mean when we say “using God’s Authority” first.  There are many within the various message denominations who would agree with Branham’s own writing in An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages book, commonly referred to as CAB.  Those who would take this position are those who would claim that Branham was deity manifest on earth, and that Branham was Christ as Lee Vayle tells us.  These people are extreme as it relates to Branham’s Scriptural authority.  There are also people that claim that while Branham was a good starting point for the modern day but that he didn’t go far enough, and was not ordained to complete the message of the return of Christ.  This denomination of the message, referred to as the SEVEN THUNDERS denominations, believe that their various individual ministers are actually the EIGHTH and CAPSTONE or final “church age” prophet messenger, taking them even further than Lee Vayle to the extreme.  Reviewing your writing and teaching which is readily available on the internet through sources such as your church’s web site, I acknowledge that you do not take the position that Branham was a deity, and that he was subject to human errors and mistakes.  So, for the moment we discount Branham’s statements concerning his infallibility.  But this on its own leads to issues concerning someone who claims to speak with God’s authority when what they say does not align with the Word of God.  This would on its face disqualify Branham as a true prophet of God.  But we will move past that issue for the moment.  For the purpose of this exercise, we will focus our attention on what Branham says using God’s authority as Branham defined it when he says “THAT’S THUS SAITH THE LORD”.
 
  
 
In the Book of Deuteronomy, Chapter 13 as referenced above, we see that some will perform signs and wonders and will dream dreams and have visions.  These acts on their own do not vindicate a prophet of God as we have seen in the same chapter and verse that false prophets will do these things.  We are clear in our first email that in the New Testament, John the Evangelist and even Jesus Christ discuss that people will proclaim themselves as prophets, and will perform signs and wonders, but their teaching will not align with God’s Word. This is consistent with what is taught by Moses in the Old Testament.
 
In the Book of Deuteronomy, Chapter 13 as referenced above, we see that some will perform signs and wonders and will dream dreams and have visions.  These acts on their own do not vindicate a prophet of God as we have seen in the same chapter and verse that false prophets will do these things.  We are clear in our first email that in the New Testament, John the Evangelist and even Jesus Christ discuss that people will proclaim themselves as prophets, and will perform signs and wonders, but their teaching will not align with God’s Word. This is consistent with what is taught by Moses in the Old Testament.
  
The question that we ask then is this: “Are there instances within the vast body of more than 1100 sermons and his books where what Branham stated using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” did not come to pass?”  Secondarily, one could ask if there are instances within Branham’s sermons where he intentionally misled his listeners or readers of the transcripts of the sermons using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” and his assertion of God’s authority as the basis for his statement?  Based on the Scriptural definition of vindication as has been thoroughly described, we view what Branham said using this proclamation of the authority of God and compare these statements to the very Word of God.  We can also examine when Branham spoke a vision or a dream using this statement of God’s authority if the dreams or visions actually came to pass.
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The question that we ask then is this: '''“Are there instances within the vast body of more than 1100 sermons and his books where what Branham stated using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” did not come to pass?”''' Secondarily, one could ask if there are instances within Branham’s sermons where he intentionally misled his listeners or readers of the transcripts of the sermons using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” and his assertion of God’s authority as the basis for his statement?  Based on the Scriptural definition of vindication as has been thoroughly described, we view what Branham said using this proclamation of the authority of God and compare these statements to the very Word of God.  We can also examine when Branham spoke a vision or a dream using this statement of God’s authority if the dreams or visions actually came to pass.
  
 
Let us examine some examples from sermons presented by William Branham under his “THUS SAITH THE LORD” self-proclaimed authority that call into question the truth of his qualifications as a prophet of God.
 
Let us examine some examples from sermons presented by William Branham under his “THUS SAITH THE LORD” self-proclaimed authority that call into question the truth of his qualifications as a prophet of God.
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From 1952 through 1965, William Branham told of his vision and proclaimed as a prophecy given to him by God that he was going to South Africa to hold a tent meeting.  Here are just some of those 30 instances in his sermons concerning this “prophetic” vision or dream, many of these instances using his self-proclaimed “THUS SAITH THE LORD”:
 
From 1952 through 1965, William Branham told of his vision and proclaimed as a prophecy given to him by God that he was going to South Africa to hold a tent meeting.  Here are just some of those 30 instances in his sermons concerning this “prophetic” vision or dream, many of these instances using his self-proclaimed “THUS SAITH THE LORD”:
  
“Then just then, He taken me out in the Spirit. Listen, Brother Jackson, you never heard this, none of the rest have. And He set me down at Durban, South Africa, in that same booth, standing there before those tens of thousands, and thousands of people there. And I looked and I seen all that meeting gather together, and fade off to my right. Geographically, I was standing this way. And it faded to the left going this way, turning blue. And then right before me, stood blocked off streets like that, with people standing there, with their hands up praising God. Then He turned me to the east, and looked that way. And I seen people standing there with clouts, like on, like the Indians wear. And there were thousands of them, and they had their hands up air, just a praising God and screaming and praising God. And I couldn't even see the end of them. And just about that time, come a great Angel from heaven, and stood be--over the top of me here, with a big Light. And that Light like on the end of one of these here operating lights on the front of a--of a big locomotive, and begin to throw. And the hillsides were sitting black and standing with people for a mile away nearly.  And I said, "Oh, are they all black people?" Then He turned my face here in front of me, to Durban again, and there was beautiful white men and women, standing with their hands up in the air, praising God. Then He turned me back again, and the great Light started going way back over the hills and showing. Then the Angel drew near. And I heard Him scream with a Voice, that shook me from the vision. Said, "There'll be three hundred thousand of them in that meeting. THUS SAITH THE LORD mark it in your book." I come out of it. I said, "My Lord and my God. Thanks be to You. I appreciate the stripes and the whipping that You give me for disobeying You. But from this on, Lord, knowingly, if I ever know again, I will never tie myself up with a bunch of nobody else preachers, managers, or no one else, but what I will be free to do what You say do. And I will go just where You say go, and do just what You say do the rest of my life. And I will always try to do just as You say do." And about that time, here He come again. And I seen my Bible rise off the table, and come over to me like this. It was turned over to the place where Paul, in the storm, said, "You should have listened to Me, and not have loosed from Crete, but nevertheless, the Angel of the Lord Who stood by me, and so forth..."  ...And I said, "Sister Broy, the Angel of the Lord has appeared to me and told me, 'Forget about the ameba. It's going to be all right. And I'm going to have a meeting that's going to consist of three hundred thousand people.' And God," I said, "my ministry is just now beginning." I said, "I want to base it; I want to tear that thing out from where it was, and get rid of all these here leeches, and things a hanging on, so I can get to the people and tell them what's the truth." And that's right. I said, "I'm tired of this and the man-made stuff anyhow. And I'm going to be where God can use me. I'm going to live right in that channel, as long as I live."” EARLY.SPIRITUAL.EXPERIENCES_ HAMMOND.IN SUNDAY_ 52-0713A
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:''“Then just then, He taken me out in the Spirit. Listen, Brother Jackson, you never heard this, none of the rest have. And He set me down at Durban, South Africa, in that same booth, standing there before those tens of thousands, and thousands of people there. And I looked and I seen all that meeting gather together, and fade off to my right. Geographically, I was standing this way. And it faded to the left going this way, turning blue. And then right before me, stood blocked off streets like that, with people standing there, with their hands up praising God. Then He turned me to the east, and looked that way. And I seen people standing there with clouts, like on, like the Indians wear. And there were thousands of them, and they had their hands up air, just a praising God and screaming and praising God. And I couldn't even see the end of them. And just about that time, come a great Angel from heaven, and stood be--over the top of me here, with a big Light. And that Light like on the end of one of these here operating lights on the front of a--of a big locomotive, and begin to throw. And the hillsides were sitting black and standing with people for a mile away nearly.  And I said, "Oh, are they all black people?" Then He turned my face here in front of me, to Durban again, and there was beautiful white men and women, standing with their hands up in the air, praising God. Then He turned me back again, and the great Light started going way back over the hills and showing. Then the Angel drew near. And I heard Him scream with a Voice, that shook me from the vision. Said, "There'll be three hundred thousand of them in that meeting. THUS SAITH THE LORD mark it in your book." I come out of it. I said, "My Lord and my God. Thanks be to You. I appreciate the stripes and the whipping that You give me for disobeying You. But from this on, Lord, knowingly, if I ever know again, I will never tie myself up with a bunch of nobody else preachers, managers, or no one else, but what I will be free to do what You say do. And I will go just where You say go, and do just what You say do the rest of my life. And I will always try to do just as You say do." And about that time, here He come again. And I seen my Bible rise off the table, and come over to me like this. It was turned over to the place where Paul, in the storm, said, "You should have listened to Me, and not have loosed from Crete, but nevertheless, the Angel of the Lord Who stood by me, and so forth..."  ...And I said, "Sister Broy, the Angel of the Lord has appeared to me and told me, 'Forget about the ameba. It's going to be all right. And I'm going to have a meeting that's going to consist of three hundred thousand people.' And God," I said, "my ministry is just now beginning." I said, "I want to base it; I want to tear that thing out from where it was, and get rid of all these here leeches, and things a hanging on, so I can get to the people and tell them what's the truth." And that's right. I said, "I'm tired of this and the man-made stuff anyhow. And I'm going to be where God can use me. I'm going to live right in that channel, as long as I live."”<ref>EARLY.SPIRITUAL.EXPERIENCES_ HAMMOND.IN SUNDAY_ 52-0713A</ref>
  
“Then He set Me down at Durban, South Africa, where we had a hundred thousand people in the meeting, the last meeting. Had thirty thousand converts in one day, when they seen what the Lord had did, how He done the great and mighty works. And there, then I was setting back there again; He showed me another crowd just like it showed that crowd passing away.
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:''“Then He set Me down at Durban, South Africa, where we had a hundred thousand people in the meeting, the last meeting. Had thirty thousand converts in one day, when they seen what the Lord had did, how He done the great and mighty works. And there, then I was setting back there again; He showed me another crowd just like it showed that crowd passing away.
Then He turned me this way, and an Angel came down with a light, flash it on. I just seen oceans of people, and they were Indians wrapped in Indian garb. He told me, said... And I seen the Angel come real near. And I said, "Who are these people?"  And He, the other Angel who was standing by me, the One that you see back there in the picture, well, He--He come near me; He said, "There's three hundred thousand of those in that meeting."  Now, you mark it in your Bible, and watch what the report is. When I return from India, there'll be three hundred thousand people attend the meeting there at one time. I look for a hundred thousand conversions at one time. See? It's the only thing that'll stem the tide of Communism now, when forty percent of India has already turned Communist.”  ISRAEL.AND.THE.CHURCH.5 JEFF.IN 53-0329
 
  
“And here's what will take place: The Angel of the Lord which come to me and told me to return to Africa... And He set me down in Africa and showed me a greater meeting than was there at the first time.  Then while I was standing there, while another Angel come down from the heavens. He looked like some sort of a red like garment. But He was above me, and He--He turned me to the east. And I seen all the African people here. The African people are sturdy, heavy built, but these were thin-like people, looked like they had a--like a--a blanket around them, and it had been pulled up and stuffed down like this. And I couldn't recognize any. But oh, there were so many more than they was of these African people.
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:''Then He turned me this way, and an Angel came down with a light, flash it on. I just seen oceans of people, and they were Indians wrapped in Indian garb. He told me, said... And I seen the Angel come real near. And I said, "Who are these people?"  And He, the other Angel who was standing by me, the One that you see back there in the picture, well, He--He come near me; He said, "There's three hundred thousand of those in that meeting." Now, you mark it in your Bible, and watch what the report is. When I return from India, there'll be three hundred thousand people attend the meeting there at one time. I look for a hundred thousand conversions at one time. See? It's the only thing that'll stem the tide of Communism now, when forty percent of India has already turned Communist.”<ref>ISRAEL.AND.THE.CHURCH.5 JEFF.IN 53-0329</ref>
And this Angel, above me, turned on a great big operating light, and begin to show back, like that. And just as far as I could see, was nothing but people. And it was up over hills and valleys. And they looked like Indians. And then when this Angel above me spoke to the Angel that's always with me, up side the big fellow, kind of dark complected, hair down to His shoulders, folded His arms, He was standing here by my side.  I heard Him tell this One standing by me, and the Voice was so strong that it broke me out of the vision, said, "There's three hundred thousand of those in that meeting." Mark that down, for it's THUS SAITH THE LORD. His Word comes to pass.  When the archbishop of India came to my place, recently, and received the Baptism of the Holy Ghost, Archbishop Palai, he said, "Brother Branham, the way they're looking for you there, so that meant converts." Said, "I'll assure you, there'll be anywhere from a half to a million people in your congregation." He said, "All India's awaiting."  And with this vision to back it up, watch what our Lord will do. See? I'm expecting a half a million converts in my journey. We go to Africa, to India, to Palestine, to Luxembourg, and Frankfurt, back to London, and then back home; and then down in South--Australia, New Zealand, and down in there. Now, perhaps, maybe I'll get to see you after I come back from overseas.”  DO.YOU.NOW.BELIEVE PHOENIX.AZ 54-0307E
 
  
“"What are you going to teach us, how to drink whiskey? That's what you all do over there in your churches: smoke cigarettes? Going to teach us how to divorce our wives and so forth?" Said, "If you're going to do that, we don't want it." And said, "You're coming over here with some new theology or something another; you're going to try to teach us some of the Word; we know more about it than you do." And that's right. He said, "But if you're coming to demonstrate what the Word says, we'll receive it." Amen. There you are. That's the thing they're hungering for.  Mark my word; write it in the pages of your Bible, for it's THUS SAITH THE LORD, "Remember, when we land in India, you're going to hear of tens of thousands times thousands being saved." The Holy Spirit has said it; I've wrote it here in my Bible; it's wrote in tens of thousands of Bibles right here, like the resurrection of the little boy. By a vision that He said, "There's three hundred thousand of them in there." And you see if that isn't right. There's how the Gospel's going to be preached just overnight. She'll just sweep like that from place to place.”  QUESTIONS.AND.ANSWERS JEFF.IN 54-0515
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:''“And here's what will take place: The Angel of the Lord which come to me and told me to return to Africa... And He set me down in Africa and showed me a greater meeting than was there at the first time.  Then while I was standing there, while another Angel come down from the heavens. He looked like some sort of a red like garment. But He was above me, and He--He turned me to the east. And I seen all the African people here. The African people are sturdy, heavy built, but these were thin-like people, looked like they had a--like a--a blanket around them, and it had been pulled up and stuffed down like this. And I couldn't recognize any. But oh, there were so many more than they was of these African people.
  
“Here sometime ago a vision came and told me about going to Africa. And I thought that it meant go to Africa first, then to India. And the Lord spoke to me and told me to go to Africa first, and then to India. Well I thought that compared with the vision.  And then I forgot about it and went to India first and then He condemned me at Portuguese, as you know the story. And said, "I thought I said to you 'Go to Africa first.'" And then I was condemned. And I thought all the time, and now it just comes up, the revelation begins to push me for Africa, and I read in the vision, and the vision really said, "Go to India first and back to Africa." It's just exactly the way it's going to happen.
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:''And this Angel, above me, turned on a great big operating light, and begin to show back, like that. And just as far as I could see, was nothing but people. And it was up over hills and valleys. And they looked like Indians. And then when this Angel above me spoke to the Angel that's always with me, up side the big fellow, kind of dark complected, hair down to His shoulders, folded His arms, He was standing here by my side.  I heard Him tell this One standing by me, and the Voice was so strong that it broke me out of the vision, said, "There's three hundred thousand of those in that meeting." Mark that down, for it's THUS SAITH THE LORD. His Word comes to pass.  When the archbishop of India came to my place, recently, and received the Baptism of the Holy Ghost, Archbishop Palai, he said, "Brother Branham, the way they're looking for you there, so that meant converts." Said, "I'll assure you, there'll be anywhere from a half to a million people in your congregation." He said, "All India's awaiting."  And with this vision to back it up, watch what our Lord will do. See? I'm expecting a half a million converts in my journey. We go to Africa, to India, to Palestine, to Luxembourg, and Frankfurt, back to London, and then back home; and then down in South--Australia, New Zealand, and down in there. Now, perhaps, maybe I'll get to see you after I come back from overseas.”  <ref>DO.YOU.NOW.BELIEVE PHOENIX.AZ 54-0307E</ref>
Now, see, the Lord spoke to me, knowing that I would fail, but the vision can't fail. It's what God has already said and it cannot fail. The vision, I've got it wrote in an flyleaf of my Bible. I will bring it down maybe and let you see it. How that it really reads that I will go to India first and then back to Africa; but He told me to go to Africa first and then to India, knowing that I would fail, but the vision can never fail. God has spoke it. It's got to be that way.  ...Look, even that vision, I wrote the vision out myself, and read it over a thousand times or more. I didn't see that I was supposed to go to India first. I thought I was supposed to go to Africa first. But then when this hour comes, here it is written right out in my own hand. See? I just couldn't see it. It was blinded to me till I went ahead and disobeyed God, that He might correct me and show that His Words are eternal and can't fail. See? I just couldn't read it that way.” THE.QUEEN.OF.SHEBA CHICAGO.IL 58-0107
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:''“"What are you going to teach us, how to drink whiskey? That's what you all do over there in your churches: smoke cigarettes? Going to teach us how to divorce our wives and so forth?" Said, "If you're going to do that, we don't want it." And said, "You're coming over here with some new theology or something another; you're going to try to teach us some of the Word; we know more about it than you do." And that's right. He said, "But if you're coming to demonstrate what the Word says, we'll receive it." Amen. There you are. That's the thing they're hungering for.  Mark my word; write it in the pages of your Bible, for it's THUS SAITH THE LORD, "Remember, when we land in India, you're going to hear of tens of thousands times thousands being saved." The Holy Spirit has said it; I've wrote it here in my Bible; it's wrote in tens of thousands of Bibles right here, like the resurrection of the little boy. By a vision that He said, "There's three hundred thousand of them in there." And you see if that isn't right. There's how the Gospel's going to be preached just overnight. She'll just sweep like that from place to place.”  QUESTIONS.AND.ANSWERS JEFF.IN 54-0515
 +
 
 +
:''“Here sometime ago a vision came and told me about going to Africa. And I thought that it meant go to Africa first, then to India. And the Lord spoke to me and told me to go to Africa first, and then to India. Well I thought that compared with the vision.  And then I forgot about it and went to India first and then He condemned me at Portuguese, as you know the story. And said, "I thought I said to you 'Go to Africa first.'" And then I was condemned. And I thought all the time, and now it just comes up, the revelation begins to push me for Africa, and I read in the vision, and the vision really said, "Go to India first and back to Africa." It's just exactly the way it's going to happen.
 +
 
 +
:''Now, see, the Lord spoke to me, knowing that I would fail, but the vision can't fail. It's what God has already said and it cannot fail. The vision, I've got it wrote in an flyleaf of my Bible. I will bring it down maybe and let you see it. How that it really reads that I will go to India first and then back to Africa; but He told me to go to Africa first and then to India, knowing that I would fail, but the vision can never fail. God has spoke it. It's got to be that way.  ...Look, even that vision, I wrote the vision out myself, and read it over a thousand times or more. I didn't see that I was supposed to go to India first. I thought I was supposed to go to Africa first. But then when this hour comes, here it is written right out in my own hand. See? I just couldn't see it. It was blinded to me till I went ahead and disobeyed God, that He might correct me and show that His Words are eternal and can't fail. See? I just couldn't read it that way.”<ref>THE.QUEEN.OF.SHEBA CHICAGO.IL 58-0107</ref>
  
 
Notice in this last example of the 30 instances where this vision is mentioned, Branham himself speaks about the order in which the travel is to take place.
 
Notice in this last example of the 30 instances where this vision is mentioned, Branham himself speaks about the order in which the travel is to take place.
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But then we see where William Branham himself speaks about the vision which did not come to pass:
 
But then we see where William Branham himself speaks about the vision which did not come to pass:
  
“I had planned on, so hard, coming back; burdened in the heart. I just returned from Africa, as you all know. And when I got over there, I had a restricted visa, and wouldn't let me, wouldn't let me preach because it gathers too many together. They're expecting an uprise there at any time, and--and they--they wouldn't let me preach because of that gathering too many people together. The only way I could, would to have some organization that's represented by the government, in the government, to invite me over, then that would automatically let the government send out a militia for protection. See, they're just... There is just going to be an uprise, and that's all there is to it. It's just right in hand, see. That government man said, "The last time he was here, he had about a quarter of a million people together." And he said, "Then, you see, that would just be the very thing that communism is looking for, for an uprise." So, I couldn't preach.
+
:''“I had planned on, so hard, coming back; burdened in the heart. I just returned from Africa, as you all know. And when I got over there, I had a restricted visa, and wouldn't let me, wouldn't let me preach because it gathers too many together. They're expecting an uprise there at any time, and--and they--they wouldn't let me preach because of that gathering too many people together. The only way I could, would to have some organization that's represented by the government, in the government, to invite me over, then that would automatically let the government send out a militia for protection. See, they're just... There is just going to be an uprise, and that's all there is to it. It's just right in hand, see. That government man said, "The last time he was here, he had about a quarter of a million people together." And he said, "Then, you see, that would just be the very thing that communism is looking for, for an uprise." So, I couldn't preach.
And so I, when I started to go over, I'm telling you, I never had so much trouble in all my life, of trying to get there. And then at the very last minute, very last minute to go, here was wrote across my visa, "Cannot anticipate in any kind of religious service; can only come hunting." Well, then, it was rank. But I said, "I don't care what the Devil does, I--I can't... I can't voucher for what Brother Jackson said about yellow-mane lion, and this, that, or the other. I--I can't vouch it. But I do know God told me to 'see Sidney Jackson, and go hunting.' "And I said, "I'm going." And sometime... And I had one of the greatest trips. I found out what the trouble was. Now I think, about October, the Lord willing, I can go back and have a meeting and everything, full cooperation, everything else, see, in Africa now. I got to the bottom of it and found out where it was at, what caused it. Up here, writing, this one has got this to say, and something's got something to say, and this one there. The best thing to do, is go find out, yourself. And I know where the trouble was, and what the reason of it was; it was because of so many people gathering together, the government wouldn't let me have it.” ASHAMED JEFF.IN 65-0711
+
:''And so I, when I started to go over, I'm telling you, I never had so much trouble in all my life, of trying to get there. And then at the very last minute, very last minute to go, here was wrote across my visa, "Cannot anticipate in any kind of religious service; can only come hunting." Well, then, it was rank. But I said, "I don't care what the Devil does, I--I can't... I can't voucher for what Brother Jackson said about yellow-mane lion, and this, that, or the other. I--I can't vouch it. But I do know God told me to 'see Sidney Jackson, and go hunting.' "And I said, "I'm going." And sometime... And I had one of the greatest trips. I found out what the trouble was. Now I think, about October, the Lord willing, I can go back and have a meeting and everything, full cooperation, everything else, see, in Africa now. I got to the bottom of it and found out where it was at, what caused it. Up here, writing, this one has got this to say, and something's got something to say, and this one there. The best thing to do, is go find out, yourself. And I know where the trouble was, and what the reason of it was; it was because of so many people gathering together, the government wouldn't let me have it.”<ref>ASHAMED JEFF.IN 65-0711</ref>
  
 
We see that Branham proclaims using his self-proclaimed God-given authority, “THUS SAITH THE LORD”, to describe in detail what will happen.  But we then see where Branham tells us that this vision, this dream, did not come to pass as he proclaimed it to his audiences.   
 
We see that Branham proclaims using his self-proclaimed God-given authority, “THUS SAITH THE LORD”, to describe in detail what will happen.  But we then see where Branham tells us that this vision, this dream, did not come to pass as he proclaimed it to his audiences.   
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What is instructive here is why Branham says that the meeting could not take place.  Let’s examine this part of the sermon:
 
What is instructive here is why Branham says that the meeting could not take place.  Let’s examine this part of the sermon:
  
“I had planned on, so hard, coming back; burdened in the heart. I just returned from Africa, as you all know. And when I got over there, I had a restricted visa, and wouldn't let me, wouldn't let me preach because it gathers too many together. They're expecting an uprise there at any time, and--and they--they wouldn't let me preach because of that gathering too many people together. The only way I could, would to have some organization that's represented by the government, in the government, to invite me over, then that would automatically let the government send out a militia for protection. See, they're just... There is just going to be an uprise, and that's all there is to it. It's just right in hand, see. That government man said, "The last time he was here, he had about a quarter of a million people together." And he said, "Then, you see, that would just be the very thing that communism is looking for, for an uprise." So, I couldn't preach.” ASHAMED JEFF.IN 65-0711
+
:''“I had planned on, so hard, coming back; burdened in the heart. I just returned from Africa, as you all know. And when I got over there, I had a restricted visa, and wouldn't let me, wouldn't let me preach because it gathers too many together. They're expecting an uprise there at any time, and--and they--they wouldn't let me preach because of that gathering too many people together. The only way I could, would to have some organization that's represented by the government, in the government, to invite me over, then that would automatically let the government send out a militia for protection. See, they're just... There is just going to be an uprise, and that's all there is to it. It's just right in hand, see. That government man said, "The last time he was here, he had about a quarter of a million people together." And he said, "Then, you see, that would just be the very thing that communism is looking for, for an uprise." So, I couldn't preach.”<ref>ASHAMED JEFF.IN 65-0711</ref>
  
 
What Branham explains is that the Government of South Africa would not allow him to preach, and issued a “restricted” visa for entry.  But looking at Scripture, it is interesting to discuss this.
 
What Branham explains is that the Government of South Africa would not allow him to preach, and issued a “restricted” visa for entry.  But looking at Scripture, it is interesting to discuss this.
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Romans 13:1-7
 
Romans 13:1-7
1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
+
:''1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
+
:''2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:
+
:''3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:
4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
+
:''4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
+
:''5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.
+
:''6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.
7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.
+
:''7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.<ref>The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Ro 13:1–7.</ref>
  
 
Proverbs 21:1
 
Proverbs 21:1
1 The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.
+
:''1 The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.
  
 
Isaiah 6:9-11
 
Isaiah 6:9-11
9 Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me,
+
:''9 Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me,
10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:
+
:''10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:
11 Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.
+
:''11 Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.
  
 
Jesus Christ Himself tells us this:
 
Jesus Christ Himself tells us this:
  
 
John 29:10-11
 
John 29:10-11
10 Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?
+
:''10 Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?
11 Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.
+
:''11 Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.
  
 
There are plenty of Scriptures that tell us that what God would have his prophet deliver or execute will not be supplanted by man.  We can use the entire Book of Jonah as a demonstration of this principle.  In the Book of Jonah, God sends Jonah, His true prophet, to present his proclamation concerning the destruction of Nineveh.  Now, Jonah did everything within his power to avoid travelling to Nineveh out of fear for the repercussions that he feared would come from the king and his people toward Jonah.  But we discover that when God has a message for people, our personal actions will not deter His message from being delivered.  We see in the Book of Jonah that God appointed this task for Jonah, and Jonah ultimately was in a position to execute on the vision he had from God to go to Nineveh and deliver God’s message.
 
There are plenty of Scriptures that tell us that what God would have his prophet deliver or execute will not be supplanted by man.  We can use the entire Book of Jonah as a demonstration of this principle.  In the Book of Jonah, God sends Jonah, His true prophet, to present his proclamation concerning the destruction of Nineveh.  Now, Jonah did everything within his power to avoid travelling to Nineveh out of fear for the repercussions that he feared would come from the king and his people toward Jonah.  But we discover that when God has a message for people, our personal actions will not deter His message from being delivered.  We see in the Book of Jonah that God appointed this task for Jonah, and Jonah ultimately was in a position to execute on the vision he had from God to go to Nineveh and deliver God’s message.
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This is but one single example of many where what Branham spoke using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” failed to come to pass. We can name several others to look at as well such as the Brown Bear vision, the Municipal Bridge vision, and the vision which he spoke of in 1963 concerning the prophet messenger of the Laodicean “church age” being on earth when Christ returns:
 
This is but one single example of many where what Branham spoke using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” failed to come to pass. We can name several others to look at as well such as the Brown Bear vision, the Municipal Bridge vision, and the vision which he spoke of in 1963 concerning the prophet messenger of the Laodicean “church age” being on earth when Christ returns:
  
“Now, you see, I'm just not making that up. That's what... It's THUS SAITH THE LORD. I'll read it to you out of the Book: the sounding of the seventh angel's message, the mystery of God should be finished that's been declared by His holy prophets. That's the prophets who has wrote the Word. At the sounding of the seventh church age, the last church age, all the loose ends that through these church ages have been probed at, will be wound up together. And when the Seals are broke and the mystery is revealed, down comes the Angel, the Messenger, Christ, setting His foot upon the land and upon the sea with a rainbow over His head. Now remember, this seventh angel is on earth at the time of this coming.”  THE.BREACH.BETWEEN.THE.SEVEN.CHURCH.AGES.AND.THE.SEVEN.SEALS_ JEFF.IN 63-0317E
+
:''“Now, you see, I'm just not making that up. That's what... It's THUS SAITH THE LORD. I'll read it to you out of the Book: the sounding of the seventh angel's message, the mystery of God should be finished that's been declared by His holy prophets. That's the prophets who has wrote the Word. At the sounding of the seventh church age, the last church age, all the loose ends that through these church ages have been probed at, will be wound up together. And when the Seals are broke and the mystery is revealed, down comes the Angel, the Messenger, Christ, setting His foot upon the land and upon the sea with a rainbow over His head. Now remember, this seventh angel is on earth at the time of this coming.”  THE.BREACH.BETWEEN.THE.SEVEN.CHURCH.AGES.AND.THE.SEVEN.SEALS_ JEFF.IN 63-0317E
  
 
Interestingly, since Branham proclaimed himself as this prophet messenger, this would require his resurrection for this vision to occur.  There is no Scriptural precedence for a prophet to be resurrected.  What are we to take from this example?
 
Interestingly, since Branham proclaimed himself as this prophet messenger, this would require his resurrection for this vision to occur.  There is no Scriptural precedence for a prophet to be resurrected.  What are we to take from this example?
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In the instance of the Municipal Bridge vision, the bridge which Branham pointed out to Pearry Green which is often used to confirm this vision did not collapse during its construction, and there is absolutely no indication that 16 men died during its construction let alone were drown in the same incident.  But what makes this even more interesting is the time line which Branham introduces in the telling of this vision.  Branham tells us in the 14 instances where he recounts this vision that he received the vision 22 years prior to the bridge being completed:
 
In the instance of the Municipal Bridge vision, the bridge which Branham pointed out to Pearry Green which is often used to confirm this vision did not collapse during its construction, and there is absolutely no indication that 16 men died during its construction let alone were drown in the same incident.  But what makes this even more interesting is the time line which Branham introduces in the telling of this vision.  Branham tells us in the 14 instances where he recounts this vision that he received the vision 22 years prior to the bridge being completed:
  
“I was playing marbles out with my little brothers, out in the front yard. And all at once I had a strange feeling come on me. And I stopped and set down aside of a tree. And we were right up on the bank from the Ohio River. And I looked down towards Jeffersonville, and I seen a bridge rise up and go across that, the river, span the river. And I seen sixteen men (I counted them) that dropped off of there and lost their lives on that bridge. I run in real quick and told my mother, and she thought I went to sleep. But they kept it in mind, and twenty-two years from then the Municipal Bridge now (that many of you cross when you cross there) crossed the river at the same place, and sixteen men lost their life building that bridge across the river. It's never failed to be perfectly true.” My Life Story, Los Angeles, April 19, 1959
+
:''“I was playing marbles out with my little brothers, out in the front yard. And all at once I had a strange feeling come on me. And I stopped and set down aside of a tree. And we were right up on the bank from the Ohio River. And I looked down towards Jeffersonville, and I seen a bridge rise up and go across that, the river, span the river. And I seen sixteen men (I counted them) that dropped off of there and lost their lives on that bridge. I run in real quick and told my mother, and she thought I went to sleep. But they kept it in mind, and twenty-two years from then the Municipal Bridge now (that many of you cross when you cross there) crossed the river at the same place, and sixteen men lost their life building that bridge across the river. It's never failed to be perfectly true.” My Life Story, Los Angeles, April 19, 1959
  
“Here at the municipal bridge. Sister, no doubt you know where the municipal bridge is, don't you, cross from Jeffersonville to Louisville?
+
:''“Here at the municipal bridge. Sister, no doubt you know where the municipal bridge is, don't you, cross from Jeffersonville to Louisville?
Twenty-two years, when I was a little boy, just a little bitty lad about five years old, or six years old, when the Angel of the Lord appeared in the bush... You've heard me tell that haven't you, when I was packing water?
+
:''Twenty-two years, when I was a little boy, just a little bitty lad about five years old, or six years old, when the Angel of the Lord appeared in the bush... You've heard me tell that haven't you, when I was packing water?
Well, about two weeks after that, I was playing marbles with my little brother. And I thought I'd got sick, some real funny feeling came on me. And I went and set down by the side of a tree. And I looked down at the river, and there went a bridge, a big, great big bridge going across the river. And I counted sixteen men that fell off of that bridge and drowned. And I went and told mother. And I told her I seen it. And they thought I was crazy or something. They thought I was just at a little nervous hysterical child.
+
:''Well, about two weeks after that, I was playing marbles with my little brother. And I thought I'd got sick, some real funny feeling came on me. And I went and set down by the side of a tree. And I looked down at the river, and there went a bridge, a big, great big bridge going across the river. And I counted sixteen men that fell off of that bridge and drowned. And I went and told mother. And I told her I seen it. And they thought I was crazy or something. They thought I was just at a little nervous hysterical child.
And twenty-two years from that time, on the same ground went the municipal bridge across, and sixteen men lost their lives on it. See? Wasn't nothing that... It's--it's God sent it. Your prayers brought it. See?”  EXPERIENCES PHOENIX.AZ 48-0302
+
:''And twenty-two years from that time, on the same ground went the municipal bridge across, and sixteen men lost their lives on it. See? Wasn't nothing that... It's--it's God sent it. Your prayers brought it. See?”  EXPERIENCES PHOENIX.AZ 48-0302
  
 
The bridge was completed on October 31, 1929.  Branham tells us in his vision several times that he was five or six years old, that he was playing marbles with his younger brother in the yard, and that he ran into the house to tell his mother.  Now, depending on the birthdate which you hold as credible for Branham’s birth that he gave on several different legal records and documents or that he states in his sermons, Branham was born in 1909 (or 1907, or 1908, but let’s stick with Branham’s recording of a sermon from the pulpit):
 
The bridge was completed on October 31, 1929.  Branham tells us in his vision several times that he was five or six years old, that he was playing marbles with his younger brother in the yard, and that he ran into the house to tell his mother.  Now, depending on the birthdate which you hold as credible for Branham’s birth that he gave on several different legal records and documents or that he states in his sermons, Branham was born in 1909 (or 1907, or 1908, but let’s stick with Branham’s recording of a sermon from the pulpit):
  
“She said, "I'm an astrologist." ...Said, "Perhaps, I will tell you just exactly when you was born, would you believe me?" And I said, "You can't do it in the first place." See? She said, "Oh, yes, I can." I said, "Let's hear you." Said, "You was born on April the 6th at five o'clock in the morning in 1909.””  William Branham, 52-0713A - Early Spiritual Experiences, para. 21-22
+
:''“She said, "I'm an astrologist." ...Said, "Perhaps, I will tell you just exactly when you was born, would you believe me?" And I said, "You can't do it in the first place." See? She said, "Oh, yes, I can." I said, "Let's hear you." Said, "You was born on April the 6th at five o'clock in the morning in 1909.””  William Branham, 52-0713A - Early Spiritual Experiences, para. 21-22
  
 
When we do the math, we see that Branham would not yet have been born 22 years prior to the bridge being completed.
 
When we do the math, we see that Branham would not yet have been born 22 years prior to the bridge being completed.
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Secondarily, we have examples where what Branham said was not true, but he spoke using “THUS SAITH THE LORD”.  Here is one example:
 
Secondarily, we have examples where what Branham said was not true, but he spoke using “THUS SAITH THE LORD”.  Here is one example:
  
“Now, look friends, think of King George of England, when he was healed with multiple sclerosis, when we had prayer for him. Think of Florence Nightingale, her grandmother, the founder of the Red Cross, was about sixty pounds of weight, laid dying yonder with a cancer on the duodenal of the stomach, laying there dying. A little dove flew into the bush there and the Spirit of God come and said, "THUS SAITH THE LORD, she shall live." And she weighs a hundred and fifty-five pounds in perfect health.”  September 2, 1953, Sermon: Testimony
+
:''“Now, look friends, think of King George of England, when he was healed with multiple sclerosis, when we had prayer for him. Think of Florence Nightingale, her grandmother, the founder of the Red Cross, was about sixty pounds of weight, laid dying yonder with a cancer on the duodenal of the stomach, laying there dying. A little dove flew into the bush there and the Spirit of God come and said, "THUS SAITH THE LORD, she shall live." And she weighs a hundred and fifty-five pounds in perfect health.”  September 2, 1953, Sermon: Testimony
  
 
Branham spoke of this instance where he healed Florence Nightingale five times over the course of his ministry.  There are some issues however.
 
Branham spoke of this instance where he healed Florence Nightingale five times over the course of his ministry.  There are some issues however.
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Deuteronomy 18:20 – 22
 
Deuteronomy 18:20 – 22
20 But the prophet who dares to speak a message in My name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods—that prophet must die.’
+
:''20 But the prophet who dares to speak a message in My name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods—that prophet must die.’
21 You may say to yourself, ‘How can we recognize a message the LORD has not spoken?’
+
:''21 You may say to yourself, ‘How can we recognize a message the LORD has not spoken?’
22 When a prophet speaks in the LORD’s name, and the message does not come true or is not fulfilled, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.
+
:''22 When a prophet speaks in the LORD’s name, and the message does not come true or is not fulfilled, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.
  
 
If we apply this Scriptural examination of a prophet of God, we see that Branham does not qualify as a prophet of God, and according to Scripture is actually a false prophet.  Scripture is very harsh about our behavior when the prophet proclaims a message in the Name of God (“THUS SAITH THE LORD”) which the Lord did not command him to speak.  And there is a ZERO TOLERANCE policy concerning someone who speaks as a false prophet as defined here.   
 
If we apply this Scriptural examination of a prophet of God, we see that Branham does not qualify as a prophet of God, and according to Scripture is actually a false prophet.  Scripture is very harsh about our behavior when the prophet proclaims a message in the Name of God (“THUS SAITH THE LORD”) which the Lord did not command him to speak.  And there is a ZERO TOLERANCE policy concerning someone who speaks as a false prophet as defined here.   
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It should be noted here that I view Branham’s teaching as the teaching of not a minister of God, but of a prophet of God.  If Branham had proclaimed himself as a minister of God, we would not be having this discussion.  But Branham told us that his ministry was ordained to forerun the second coming of Christ as a prophet of God… so we must evaluate his teaching as such:
 
It should be noted here that I view Branham’s teaching as the teaching of not a minister of God, but of a prophet of God.  If Branham had proclaimed himself as a minister of God, we would not be having this discussion.  But Branham told us that his ministry was ordained to forerun the second coming of Christ as a prophet of God… so we must evaluate his teaching as such:
  
“The trouble of it is, you Pentecostal people, you Baptists, you Methodists, you've failed to recognize your God-given privilege. Hear me. THUS SAITH THE LORD, you believe it with all your heart. He promised it in the last day. Hasn't been for two thousand years, because the Bible said it wouldn't be. But Jesus said... As it was in the days of Sodom, when that Angel come, turned His back to the tent, and asked for Sarah, and told what she said in the building... How many knows that? Jesus said, "As it was in the days of Sodom, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of man." When? Just before Sodom burned. That's just before this world's going to burn. The whole unbelieving world will be--go into chaos and burn with fervent heat. We know that. And just before that time... Remember, THUS SAITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, this is your last sign. Write it in your Bible. And if something rises besides this, and greater than this, call me a false prophet.”  61-0414 - Be Not Afraid, it is I
+
:''“The trouble of it is, you Pentecostal people, you Baptists, you Methodists, you've failed to recognize your God-given privilege. Hear me. THUS SAITH THE LORD, you believe it with all your heart. He promised it in the last day. Hasn't been for two thousand years, because the Bible said it wouldn't be. But Jesus said... As it was in the days of Sodom, when that Angel come, turned His back to the tent, and asked for Sarah, and told what she said in the building... How many knows that? Jesus said, "As it was in the days of Sodom, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of man." When? Just before Sodom burned. That's just before this world's going to burn. The whole unbelieving world will be--go into chaos and burn with fervent heat. We know that. And just before that time... Remember, THUS SAITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, this is your last sign. Write it in your Bible. And if something rises besides this, and greater than this, call me a false prophet.”  61-0414 - Be Not Afraid, it is I
  
“You'll never receive another sign. This is It. THUS SAITH THE LORD. Would a prophet of God make a statement like that if it wasn't true? You're receiving your greatest sign, and your last sign, before the appearing of Christ. Come! The reason I'm saying these things, I've never said this in any other meeting, I feel that right here is opportunity here for something to happen. That's why I'm saying the way I am. I believe you understand. You wouldn't go around, make some kind of a cult, say, "Brother Branham is a god," or something like that. You understand what I'm talking about.”  62-0707 - Jehovah-Jireh #3
+
:''“You'll never receive another sign. This is It. THUS SAITH THE LORD. Would a prophet of God make a statement like that if it wasn't true? You're receiving your greatest sign, and your last sign, before the appearing of Christ. Come! The reason I'm saying these things, I've never said this in any other meeting, I feel that right here is opportunity here for something to happen. That's why I'm saying the way I am. I believe you understand. You wouldn't go around, make some kind of a cult, say, "Brother Branham is a god," or something like that. You understand what I'm talking about.”  62-0707 - Jehovah-Jireh #3
  
 
William Branham also told us that his interpretation of the Bible was correct:
 
William Branham also told us that his interpretation of the Bible was correct:
  
“Now, let us all pray. Lord, with our heads bowed, just now, it's got to be known that Your Scripture's the truth, and I've told the truth of It, or either, I am wrong and a false prophet, or Your Scripture has misled us. Now, Lord, we know that that's not so. We know that Your Scriptures are Truth.” LED.BY.THE.SPIRIT_ LA.CA TUESDAY_ 59-0407
+
:''“Now, let us all pray. Lord, with our heads bowed, just now, it's got to be known that Your Scripture's the truth, and I've told the truth of It, or either, I am wrong and a false prophet, or Your Scripture has misled us. Now, Lord, we know that that's not so. We know that Your Scriptures are Truth.” LED.BY.THE.SPIRIT_ LA.CA TUESDAY_ 59-0407
  
 
We also can recall that William Branham told us that he was infallible as the prophet messenger:
 
We also can recall that William Branham told us that he was infallible as the prophet messenger:
  
“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.”  An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age
+
:''“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.”  An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age
  
 
Since Branham proclaimed himself as a prophet, and as THE PROPHET MESSENGER prior to the return of Jesus Christ, it is important to evaluate him as what he himself claimed.  And to drive this point home, Branham spoke about diminishing his ministry so Christ’s return could be exalted:
 
Since Branham proclaimed himself as a prophet, and as THE PROPHET MESSENGER prior to the return of Jesus Christ, it is important to evaluate him as what he himself claimed.  And to drive this point home, Branham spoke about diminishing his ministry so Christ’s return could be exalted:
  
“That’s when Peter made those notable words, and said, “Lord, where would we go?” Certainly. Then He begin from that very hour… Long as He was healing the sick, it was fine. But when He went to interfering with their individual life, then that said something different. From right there His ministry begin to diminish, right on to the cross. And every true servant of God will follow the same example. Certainly, the people wants patted and played with. But when it comes to truth, they don’t want it. Now, remember, these are tapes going around the world. All right.” 62-0714 - The Uncertain Sound
+
:''“That’s when Peter made those notable words, and said, “Lord, where would we go?” Certainly. Then He begin from that very hour… Long as He was healing the sick, it was fine. But when He went to interfering with their individual life, then that said something different. From right there His ministry begin to diminish, right on to the cross. And every true servant of God will follow the same example. Certainly, the people wants patted and played with. But when it comes to truth, they don’t want it. Now, remember, these are tapes going around the world. All right.” 62-0714 - The Uncertain Sound
  
 
Let’s start with specific Scriptures which William Branham preached in opposition to Scripture.  As our first example, let’s look at what Branham said concerning Enoch and Noah.  William Branham tells us this concerning how Saul was chosen:
 
Let’s start with specific Scriptures which William Branham preached in opposition to Scripture.  As our first example, let’s look at what Branham said concerning Enoch and Noah.  William Branham tells us this concerning how Saul was chosen:
  
"So they searched out through the country. And down in the tribe of Benjamin they found a man by the name of Kish, who had a son named Saul. And they chose him."  60-0610 THE.REJECTED.KING_ CHAUTAUQUA.OH FRIDAY_
+
:''"So they searched out through the country. And down in the tribe of Benjamin they found a man by the name of Kish, who had a son named Saul. And they chose him."  60-0610 THE.REJECTED.KING_ CHAUTAUQUA.OH FRIDAY_
  
 
In this sermon, and others where he claimed the same thing, Branham tells us that the people of the Nation of Israel “searched”, “found”, and “chose” Saul.  But what does the Bible tell us?
 
In this sermon, and others where he claimed the same thing, Branham tells us that the people of the Nation of Israel “searched”, “found”, and “chose” Saul.  But what does the Bible tell us?
  
 
1 Samuel 9:15-17 (HCSB)  
 
1 Samuel 9:15-17 (HCSB)  
15 Now the day before Saul’s arrival, the LORD had informed Samuel,  
+
:''15 Now the day before Saul’s arrival, the LORD had informed Samuel,  
16 “At this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him ruler over My people Israel. He will save them from the hand of the Philistines because I have seen the affliction of My people, for their cry has come to Me.”  
+
:''16 “At this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him ruler over My people Israel. He will save them from the hand of the Philistines because I have seen the affliction of My people, for their cry has come to Me.”  
17 When Samuel saw Saul, the LORD told him, “Here is the man I told you about; he will rule over My people.”
+
:''17 When Samuel saw Saul, the LORD told him, “Here is the man I told you about; he will rule over My people.”
  
 
So, Scripture tells us that the Lord informed Samuel that Saul would rule his people instead of the people making a decision about Saul.  Remember, William Branham proclaimed over 400 times that he was a prophet, he claimed that as a prophet everything he taught aligned with Scripture, and he proclaimed that he was infallible.  Which is correct?  Was Scripture correct, or was Branham correct.
 
So, Scripture tells us that the Lord informed Samuel that Saul would rule his people instead of the people making a decision about Saul.  Remember, William Branham proclaimed over 400 times that he was a prophet, he claimed that as a prophet everything he taught aligned with Scripture, and he proclaimed that he was infallible.  Which is correct?  Was Scripture correct, or was Branham correct.
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1 Corinthians 14:33 (KJV)  
 
1 Corinthians 14:33 (KJV)  
33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.
+
:''33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.
  
 
Here we see the Apostle Paul speak about prophets that when they speak with God’s Authority, do not sow confusion.
 
Here we see the Apostle Paul speak about prophets that when they speak with God’s Authority, do not sow confusion.
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Let’s look at another example where what Branham taught directly contradicts Scripture:
 
Let’s look at another example where what Branham taught directly contradicts Scripture:
  
"And when the... John wept. Now, someone, as I said last week, they said, "John wept because that he could find nobody worthy." It wasn't that. A man under the influence of the Holy Ghost wouldn't weep for that. Thought that, "'Cause he wasn't worthy," maybe John himself wasn't worthy. There's nobody worthy. But he didn't weep because of that. I believe he was weeping for joy because that he had seen the whole plan of redemption was wrote in this Book here. It wasn't because there wasn't nobody worthy, because there stood a Lamb right there was worthy. So he was weeping there, he said, "Oh, Glory to God." Listen at him directly when he goes to shouting. Now, but we find him here weeping because that he was so happy because that the Lamb had taken the Book for the--out of the hand of Him that set upon the throne."  REV.CHAP.5.PART.2 JEFF.IN ROJC 747-793 61-0618
+
:''"And when the... John wept. Now, someone, as I said last week, they said, "John wept because that he could find nobody worthy." It wasn't that. A man under the influence of the Holy Ghost wouldn't weep for that. Thought that, "'Cause he wasn't worthy," maybe John himself wasn't worthy. There's nobody worthy. But he didn't weep because of that. I believe he was weeping for joy because that he had seen the whole plan of redemption was wrote in this Book here. It wasn't because there wasn't nobody worthy, because there stood a Lamb right there was worthy. So he was weeping there, he said, "Oh, Glory to God." Listen at him directly when he goes to shouting. Now, but we find him here weeping because that he was so happy because that the Lamb had taken the Book for the--out of the hand of Him that set upon the throne."  REV.CHAP.5.PART.2 JEFF.IN ROJC 747-793 61-0618
  
 
What does Scripture tell us?
 
What does Scripture tell us?
  
 
Revelation 5:4 (HCSB)  
 
Revelation 5:4 (HCSB)  
4 And I cried and cried because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or even to look in it.  
+
:''4 And I cried and cried because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or even to look in it.  
  
 
Did Branham correct the Word of God?  Or was the Word of God correct and Branham mistaken?
 
Did Branham correct the Word of God?  Or was the Word of God correct and Branham mistaken?
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What did Branham tell us about Enoch?
 
What did Branham tell us about Enoch?
  
“And notice, back there in that evil day just before the destruction, when God had a man out preaching the Gospel, a poor man, humble man, not very much of the world, but a man who had a heart to listen to God: Noah. There was Noah and Enoch preaching at the same time.”  JUNCTION.OF.TIME JEFF.IN 56-0115
+
:''“And notice, back there in that evil day just before the destruction, when God had a man out preaching the Gospel, a poor man, humble man, not very much of the world, but a man who had a heart to listen to God: Noah. There was Noah and Enoch preaching at the same time.”  JUNCTION.OF.TIME JEFF.IN 56-0115
  
“And when they... When Noah saw Enoch was missing, he thought, "What become of Enoch? What become of Enoch? Where is he at?" Which, was grandson, Noah was grandson to Enoch. And he said, "Where is it at? What become of him? We can't find him no more." Noah started building on that ark. He knowed that the time was at hand, right there.”  UNCERTAIN.SOUND JEFF.IN 60-1218
+
:''“And when they... When Noah saw Enoch was missing, he thought, "What become of Enoch? What become of Enoch? Where is he at?" Which, was grandson, Noah was grandson to Enoch. And he said, "Where is it at? What become of him? We can't find him no more." Noah started building on that ark. He knowed that the time was at hand, right there.”  UNCERTAIN.SOUND JEFF.IN 60-1218
  
“Just like Noah kept watching Enoch. When Enoch went, Noah said, "Better get close to the ark. The time is at hand." Noah kept watching Enoch (See?)”  THIRD.SEAL.THE JEFF.IN 63-0320
+
:''“Just like Noah kept watching Enoch. When Enoch went, Noah said, "Better get close to the ark. The time is at hand." Noah kept watching Enoch (See?)”  THIRD.SEAL.THE JEFF.IN 63-0320
  
 
Was Noah alive when Enoch was translated?  According to Scripture, Enoch was Translated 987 years after the appearance of Adam (Genesis 5:15, 23).  Noah was born 1,056 years after the appearance of Adam (Gen 5:9, 9:29).  The flood started when Noah was 600 years old, or 1,656 years after the appearance of Adam.  Noah was born 69 years after Enoch was Translated.  God told Noah to build the ark 569 years after Enoch was Translated.  How was it that Noah could watch Enoch to determine his sign to build the ark for the flood which happened 669 years after Enoch’s Translation?  Branham clearly tells us Noah and Enoch were preaching at the same time.  Which is correct?  Was Scripture correct, or was Branham correct?
 
Was Noah alive when Enoch was translated?  According to Scripture, Enoch was Translated 987 years after the appearance of Adam (Genesis 5:15, 23).  Noah was born 1,056 years after the appearance of Adam (Gen 5:9, 9:29).  The flood started when Noah was 600 years old, or 1,656 years after the appearance of Adam.  Noah was born 69 years after Enoch was Translated.  God told Noah to build the ark 569 years after Enoch was Translated.  How was it that Noah could watch Enoch to determine his sign to build the ark for the flood which happened 669 years after Enoch’s Translation?  Branham clearly tells us Noah and Enoch were preaching at the same time.  Which is correct?  Was Scripture correct, or was Branham correct?
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But, how about this example… Branham tells us about something which is rather objectionable:
 
But, how about this example… Branham tells us about something which is rather objectionable:
  
"God's wrote three Bibles: one, the Zodiac, one in the pyramids, one on paper. Now, He's writing His first, the Zodiac. It starts off with a virgin, ends up with Leo the lion: Jesus' first coming and His second coming. If we had time to run down through it, you'd see it."  53-0509, The Pillar Of Fire  
+
:''"God's wrote three Bibles: one, the Zodiac, one in the pyramids, one on paper. Now, He's writing His first, the Zodiac. It starts off with a virgin, ends up with Leo the lion: Jesus' first coming and His second coming. If we had time to run down through it, you'd see it."  53-0509, The Pillar Of Fire  
  
 
We make the distinction here between the ASTROLOGY/ZODIAC, the divination of future events using star signs, from ASTRONOMY, the study of the movement of the stars.  We recognize that God orders the stars and commands their movement in the sky:
 
We make the distinction here between the ASTROLOGY/ZODIAC, the divination of future events using star signs, from ASTRONOMY, the study of the movement of the stars.  We recognize that God orders the stars and commands their movement in the sky:
  
 
Psalm 147:3-5 (KJV)  
 
Psalm 147:3-5 (KJV)  
3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.  
+
:''3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.  
4 He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names.
+
:''4 He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names.
5 Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite.
+
:''5 Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite.
  
 
Isaiah 40:26 (KJV)  
 
Isaiah 40:26 (KJV)  
26 Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth.  
+
:''26 Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth.  
  
 
Job 9:7-10 (KJV)  
 
Job 9:7-10 (KJV)  
7 Which commandeth the sun, and it riseth not; and sealeth up the stars.  
+
:''7 Which commandeth the sun, and it riseth not; and sealeth up the stars.  
8 Which alone spreadeth out the heavens, and treadeth upon the waves of the sea.  
+
:''8 Which alone spreadeth out the heavens, and treadeth upon the waves of the sea.  
9 Which maketh Arcturus, Orion, and Pleiades, and the chambers of the south.  
+
:''9 Which maketh Arcturus, Orion, and Pleiades, and the chambers of the south.  
10 Which doeth great things past finding out; yea, and wonders without number.
+
:''10 Which doeth great things past finding out; yea, and wonders without number.
  
 
The Bible is quite clear about the ZODIAC/ASTROLOGY:
 
The Bible is quite clear about the ZODIAC/ASTROLOGY:
  
 
Isaiah 47:12-14 (HCSB)  
 
Isaiah 47:12-14 (HCSB)  
12 So take your stand with your spells and your many sorceries, which you have wearied yourself with from your youth. Perhaps you will be able to succeed; perhaps you will inspire terror!  
+
:''12 So take your stand with your spells and your many sorceries, which you have wearied yourself with from your youth. Perhaps you will be able to succeed; perhaps you will inspire terror!  
13 You are worn out with your many consultations. So let them stand and save you— the astrologers, who observe the stars, who predict monthly what will happen to you.  
+
:''13 You are worn out with your many consultations. So let them stand and save you— the astrologers, who observe the stars, who predict monthly what will happen to you.  
14 Look, they are like stubble; fire burns them up. They cannot deliver themselves from the power of the flame. This is not a coal for warming themselves, or a fire to sit beside!  
+
:''14 Look, they are like stubble; fire burns them up. They cannot deliver themselves from the power of the flame. This is not a coal for warming themselves, or a fire to sit beside!  
  
 
Now, Branham promotes something which Scripture directly admonishes against, not once but five times.  Let’s review Moses’ directions concerning someone who teaches another God:
 
Now, Branham promotes something which Scripture directly admonishes against, not once but five times.  Let’s review Moses’ directions concerning someone who teaches another God:
  
 
Deuteronomy 13:1-5 (KJV)  
 
Deuteronomy 13:1-5 (KJV)  
1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,
+
:''1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,
2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;  
+
:''2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;  
3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.  
+
:''3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.  
4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.  
+
:''4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.  
5 And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.
+
:''5 And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.
  
 
ASTROLOGY, the ZODIAC, is absolutely contrary to God’s Word and in fact teaches dependence on another god.  And Branham spoke about the “three bibles” including the ZODIAC five times during his ministry.
 
ASTROLOGY, the ZODIAC, is absolutely contrary to God’s Word and in fact teaches dependence on another god.  And Branham spoke about the “three bibles” including the ZODIAC five times during his ministry.
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Deuteronomy 18:20-22 (KJV)  
 
Deuteronomy 18:20-22 (KJV)  
20 But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.  
+
:''20 But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.  
21 And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken?  
+
:''21 And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken?  
22 When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.
+
:''22 When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.
  
 
Concluding that what Branham taught never opposed the Word of God is clearly incorrect.  And if as many message ministers have publicly stated Branham is to be believed even if the Bible is in opposition to Branham’s teaching, then the entire Bible is of no effect.  Even Branham’s son Joseph told us this just over a year ago:
 
Concluding that what Branham taught never opposed the Word of God is clearly incorrect.  And if as many message ministers have publicly stated Branham is to be believed even if the Bible is in opposition to Branham’s teaching, then the entire Bible is of no effect.  Even Branham’s son Joseph told us this just over a year ago:
  
“We can just sit back and relax, and just enjoy what we’re hearing. It doesn’t matter, we don’t have to have our guard up, you don’t have to do nothing, except for saying ‘Amen! – Amen!’. He says ‘the bride says “Amen’ to every word”’. What did that angel of the Lord say?—‘Get the people to believe YOU!’ So when they’re trying to make you doubt, ‘…well, the prophet didn’t say this, he didn’t say this—he made a mistake here, he made a mistake here…’ I don’t care if it’s a bare-faced lie, if the world can prove it--I believe it! The angel said, ‘get the people to believe what YOU SAID.” Amen! We believe it!” (Joseph Branham introducing a message in the Branham Tabernacle on March 24, 2019 at the 14:59 mark in the recording)
+
:''“We can just sit back and relax, and just enjoy what we’re hearing. It doesn’t matter, we don’t have to have our guard up, you don’t have to do nothing, except for saying ‘Amen! – Amen!’. He says ‘the bride says “Amen’ to every word”’. What did that angel of the Lord say?—‘Get the people to believe YOU!’ So when they’re trying to make you doubt, ‘…well, the prophet didn’t say this, he didn’t say this—he made a mistake here, he made a mistake here…’ I don’t care if it’s a bare-faced lie, if the world can prove it--I believe it! The angel said, ‘get the people to believe what YOU SAID.” Amen! We believe it!” (Joseph Branham introducing a message in the Branham Tabernacle on March 24, 2019 at the 14:59 mark in the recording)
  
 
As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord… we will harken to His Word… and we will not put God’s Word aside in favor of the sermons and teaching of a self-proclaimed prophet of God.
 
As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord… we will harken to His Word… and we will not put God’s Word aside in favor of the sermons and teaching of a self-proclaimed prophet of God.
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Acts 17:10-11 (KJV)
 
Acts 17:10-11 (KJV)
10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.
+
:''10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.
11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
+
:''11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
  
 
I suggest that we examine what is said against Scripture to see if what we have heard is actually from God.
 
I suggest that we examine what is said against Scripture to see if what we have heard is actually from God.
  
 
Malachi 4:5-6
 
Malachi 4:5-6
5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
+
:''5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
+
:''6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
  
 
It is wise to make sure we examine this Scripture in context.  We are instructed to use context as we examine Scripture in the Book of Isaiah:
 
It is wise to make sure we examine this Scripture in context.  We are instructed to use context as we examine Scripture in the Book of Isaiah:
  
 
Isaiah 28:10
 
Isaiah 28:10
10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little…
+
:''10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little…
  
 
Let us explore the Book of Malachi, precept upon precept, line upon line.  To understand the Book of Malachi, I find it important to understand to whom the book was written:
 
Let us explore the Book of Malachi, precept upon precept, line upon line.  To understand the Book of Malachi, I find it important to understand to whom the book was written:
  
 
Malachi 1:1
 
Malachi 1:1
1 The burden of the word of the LORD to Israel by Malachi.
+
:''1 The burden of the word of the LORD to Israel by Malachi.
  
 
Notice here that Malachi is written to the Nation of Israel.  How can we confirm this?  We need only look at the verse which directly precedes the now frequently used Malachi 4:5-6, verse 4:
 
Notice here that Malachi is written to the Nation of Israel.  How can we confirm this?  We need only look at the verse which directly precedes the now frequently used Malachi 4:5-6, verse 4:
  
 
Malachi 4:4
 
Malachi 4:4
4 Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments.
+
:''4 Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments.
  
 
There are two incredibly important statements made here that shed significant light on the context of the Book of Malachi.  The first is “Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb…” and the second is “…FOR ALL ISRAEL”.  In the first instance, we see Malachi state without equivocation that we are to remember the law of Moses which was command to him at Horeb (now called Mt Sanai).   
 
There are two incredibly important statements made here that shed significant light on the context of the Book of Malachi.  The first is “Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb…” and the second is “…FOR ALL ISRAEL”.  In the first instance, we see Malachi state without equivocation that we are to remember the law of Moses which was command to him at Horeb (now called Mt Sanai).   
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Malachi 4:5
 
Malachi 4:5
5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
+
:''5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
  
 
First, we see that Elijah will be sent before the (2d data point) great and (3d data point) dreadful day of the Lord.  This would look based on the conjunction in the last sentence AND between Great and Dreadful.  Does this point to two separate time periods?  Scripture will clarify this for us as we will see.
 
First, we see that Elijah will be sent before the (2d data point) great and (3d data point) dreadful day of the Lord.  This would look based on the conjunction in the last sentence AND between Great and Dreadful.  Does this point to two separate time periods?  Scripture will clarify this for us as we will see.
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Malachi 4:6
 
Malachi 4:6
6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
+
:''6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
  
 
Like I said, a lot to unpack, and each piece in context is very important.
 
Like I said, a lot to unpack, and each piece in context is very important.
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Luke 1:5-17
 
Luke 1:5-17
5 In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest of Abijah’s division named Zechariah. His wife was from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.  
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:''5 In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest of Abijah’s division named Zechariah. His wife was from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.  
6 Both were righteous in God’s sight, living without blame according to all the commands and requirements of the Lord.
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:''6 Both were righteous in God’s sight, living without blame according to all the commands and requirements of the Lord.
7 But they had no children because Elizabeth could not conceive, and both of them were well along in years.
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:''7 But they had no children because Elizabeth could not conceive, and both of them were well along in years.
8 When his division was on duty and he was serving as priest before God,
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:''8 When his division was on duty and he was serving as priest before God,
9 it happened that he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to enter the sanctuary of the Lord and burn incense.
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:''9 it happened that he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to enter the sanctuary of the Lord and burn incense.
10 At the hour of incense the whole assembly of the people was praying outside.
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:''10 At the hour of incense the whole assembly of the people was praying outside.
11 An angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense.
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:''11 An angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense.
12 When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and overcome with fear.
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:''12 When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and overcome with fear.
13 But the angel said to him: Do not be afraid, Zechariah,
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:''13 But the angel said to him: Do not be afraid, Zechariah, because your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will name him John.
because your prayer has been heard.
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:''14 There will be joy and delight for you, and many will rejoice at his birth.
Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son,
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:''15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord and will never drink wine or beer. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit
and you will name him John.
 
14 There will be joy and delight for you,
 
and many will rejoice at his birth.
 
15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord
 
and will never drink wine or beer.
 
He will be filled with the Holy Spirit
 
 
while still in his mother’s womb.
 
while still in his mother’s womb.
16 He will turn many of the sons of Israel
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:''16 He will turn many of the sons of Israel to the Lord their God.
to the Lord their God.
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17 And he will go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of fathers to their children, and the disobedient to the understanding of the righteous, to make ready for the Lord a prepared people.
17 And he will go before Him
 
in the spirit and power of Elijah,
 
to turn the hearts of fathers
 
to their children,
 
and the disobedient
 
to the understanding of the righteous,
 
to make ready for the Lord a prepared people.
 
  
 
As a side note, what is interesting about this Scripture is that Branham, speaks to it directly here:
 
As a side note, what is interesting about this Scripture is that Branham, speaks to it directly here:
  
“And Mary said, “The Angel Gabriel met me and told me that I was going to bring forth a Son also. And I was to call His Name Jesus.” Well, just the time that she spoke Jesus, little John begin to leap and jump in his mother’s womb. Brother, the first time the Name of Jesus Christ was ever spoke, it brought life to a dead baby.” 50-0716 - Believest Thou This?
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:''“And Mary said, “The Angel Gabriel met me and told me that I was going to bring forth a Son also. And I was to call His Name Jesus.” Well, just the time that she spoke Jesus, little John begin to leap and jump in his mother’s womb. Brother, the first time the Name of Jesus Christ was ever spoke, it brought life to a dead baby.” 50-0716 - Believest Thou This?
  
 
And here:
 
And here:
  
“Little John dead in his mother’s womb, and Elisabeth said, “Whence cometh the mother of my Lord to me?” Said, “For as soon as thy salutation come to my ears, my baby leaped in my wombs for joy.” What a baby (Hallelujah.), what a Name: “My baby leaped in my womb for joy when your salutation come to my ears.””  51-0729A - The Resurrection Of Lazarus
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:''“Little John dead in his mother’s womb, and Elisabeth said, “Whence cometh the mother of my Lord to me?” Said, “For as soon as thy salutation come to my ears, my baby leaped in my wombs for joy.” What a baby (Hallelujah.), what a Name: “My baby leaped in my womb for joy when your salutation come to my ears.””  51-0729A - The Resurrection Of Lazarus
  
 
And here:
 
And here:
  
“And the first time that that Name Jesus was spoke through mortal lips, little dead John, laying in his mother’s wombs got the Holy Ghost, and begin to leap and jump for joy. That’s right, and if the Name of Jesus Christ will bring life to a dead baby what ought it to do to a borned again Church? Hallelujah. Amen. Yes, sir.” 53-0906A - Believest Thou This?
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:''“And the first time that that Name Jesus was spoke through mortal lips, little dead John, laying in his mother’s wombs got the Holy Ghost, and begin to leap and jump for joy. That’s right, and if the Name of Jesus Christ will bring life to a dead baby what ought it to do to a borned again Church? Hallelujah. Amen. Yes, sir.” 53-0906A - Believest Thou This?
  
 
And here:
 
And here:
  
“And just as soon as he said—she said, “Jesus,” little John come to life, begin leap in her wombs for joy. Brethren, the first time that the Name of Jesus Christ was ever spoke by mortal lips, brought life to a dead baby.”  53-1122 - The Resurrection Of Lazarus
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:''“And just as soon as he said—she said, “Jesus,” little John come to life, begin leap in her wombs for joy. Brethren, the first time that the Name of Jesus Christ was ever spoke by mortal lips, brought life to a dead baby.”  53-1122 - The Resurrection Of Lazarus
  
 
And here:
 
And here:
  
“Like I’ve often thought, when Mary being pregnant by the Holy Spirit who overshadowed and created this baby, told her about what was happening. She run up to see her cousin, Elisabeth, who was six months with—with John, the wife of Zacharias. And they were cousins. And when Mary told Elisabeth that she also was going to have a baby, knowing no man, that the Holy Ghost was going to bring it, and said, “They called His Name ‘Jesus.’” You know, little John, and he was six months in the mother’s womb, and he hadn’t ever moved yet. See, that’s subnormal; about two or three months and the baby moves. But, this was subnormal, little John was dead in his mother’s womb. And as soon as Mary’s salutation come to her ear, said, “I shall call His name, Jesus.” The first time Jesus Christ was ever spoke by human lips, it brought a little, dead baby to life, in its mother’s womb.”  63-0627 - Jesus Christ The Same Yesterday, Today, And Forever
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:''“Like I’ve often thought, when Mary being pregnant by the Holy Spirit who overshadowed and created this baby, told her about what was happening. She run up to see her cousin, Elisabeth, who was six months with—with John, the wife of Zacharias. And they were cousins. And when Mary told Elisabeth that she also was going to have a baby, knowing no man, that the Holy Ghost was going to bring it, and said, “They called His Name ‘Jesus.’” You know, little John, and he was six months in the mother’s womb, and he hadn’t ever moved yet. See, that’s subnormal; about two or three months and the baby moves. But, this was subnormal, little John was dead in his mother’s womb. And as soon as Mary’s salutation come to her ear, said, “I shall call His name, Jesus.” The first time Jesus Christ was ever spoke by human lips, it brought a little, dead baby to life, in its mother’s womb.”  63-0627 - Jesus Christ The Same Yesterday, Today, And Forever
  
 
In these instances, Branham tells us that John the Baptist was dead.  He would not move.  While we appreciate that the Name of Jesus is All Capable of raising the dead, we find no Scriptural evidence to support the assertion by William Branham that John the Baptist was dead inside of his mother’s womb.  We aren’t suggesting spiritual death, Branham explicitly tells us that the situation was “subnormal” because John “hadn’t ever moved yet”, and he tells us that the Name of Jesus brought a “dead baby to life”.
 
In these instances, Branham tells us that John the Baptist was dead.  He would not move.  While we appreciate that the Name of Jesus is All Capable of raising the dead, we find no Scriptural evidence to support the assertion by William Branham that John the Baptist was dead inside of his mother’s womb.  We aren’t suggesting spiritual death, Branham explicitly tells us that the situation was “subnormal” because John “hadn’t ever moved yet”, and he tells us that the Name of Jesus brought a “dead baby to life”.
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Luke 1:17
 
Luke 1:17
17 And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.
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:''17 And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.
  
 
Remember the conjunction in Malachi 4:6, the use of the word “AND”?  Here we see a similar construction of that conjunction used.  We see that Gabriel confirms that John comes in the spirit of Elias (Elijah’s other name), to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children (And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children), and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just (and the heart of the children to their fathers).
 
Remember the conjunction in Malachi 4:6, the use of the word “AND”?  Here we see a similar construction of that conjunction used.  We see that Gabriel confirms that John comes in the spirit of Elias (Elijah’s other name), to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children (And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children), and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just (and the heart of the children to their fathers).
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Luke 16:16
 
Luke 16:16
16 The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.
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:''16 The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.
  
 
The law and the prophets were until JOHN THE BAPTIST.
 
The law and the prophets were until JOHN THE BAPTIST.
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Matthew 17:10-13 (HCSB)  
 
Matthew 17:10-13 (HCSB)  
10 So the disciples questioned Him, “Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?”
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:''10 So the disciples questioned Him, “Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?”
11 “Elijah is coming and will restore everything,” He replied.  
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:''11 “Elijah is coming and will restore everything,” He replied.  
12 “But I tell you: Elijah has already come, and they didn’t recognize him. On the contrary, they did whatever they pleased to him. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands.”  
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:''12 “But I tell you: Elijah has already come, and they didn’t recognize him. On the contrary, they did whatever they pleased to him. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands.”  
13 Then the disciples understood that He spoke to them about John the Baptist.  
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:''13 Then the disciples understood that He spoke to them about John the Baptist.  
  
 
And here, Jesus confirms that it was John the Baptist of whom the Angel spoke:
 
And here, Jesus confirms that it was John the Baptist of whom the Angel spoke:
  
 
Matthew 11:7-15
 
Matthew 11:7-15
7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
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:''7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses
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:''8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses
9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
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:''9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
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:''10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
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:''11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.
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:''12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.
13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
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:''13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come.
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:''14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come.
15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
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:''15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
  
 
Here, Jesus confirms that John the Baptist is the Elias which was spoken of through the prophets. Jesus also confirms once again here that the law and the prophets were until John the Baptist.  HE THAT HATH EARS TO HEAR, LET HIM HEAR!
 
Here, Jesus confirms that John the Baptist is the Elias which was spoken of through the prophets. Jesus also confirms once again here that the law and the prophets were until John the Baptist.  HE THAT HATH EARS TO HEAR, LET HIM HEAR!
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Matthew 15:21-24
 
Matthew 15:21-24
21 When Jesus left there, He withdrew to the area of Tyre and Sidon.
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:''21 When Jesus left there, He withdrew to the area of Tyre and Sidon.
22 Just then a Canaanite woman from that region came and kept crying out, “Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David! My daughter is cruelly tormented by a demon.”
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:''22 Just then a Canaanite woman from that region came and kept crying out, “Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David! My daughter is cruelly tormented by a demon.”
23 Yet He did not say a word to her. So His disciples approached Him and urged Him, “Send her away because she cries out after us.”
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:''23 Yet He did not say a word to her. So His disciples approached Him and urged Him, “Send her away because she cries out after us.”
24 He replied, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
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:''24 He replied, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
  
 
Does this mean that he ignored the Gentiles?  Certainly not.  In the same story, Jesus said this:
 
Does this mean that he ignored the Gentiles?  Certainly not.  In the same story, Jesus said this:
  
 
Matthew 15 25-28
 
Matthew 15 25-28
25 But she came, knelt before Him, and said, “Lord, help me!”
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:''25 But she came, knelt before Him, and said, “Lord, help me!”
26 He answered, “It isn’t right to take the children’s bread and throw it to their dogs.”
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:''26 He answered, “It isn’t right to take the children’s bread and throw it to their dogs.”
27 “Yes, Lord,” she said, “yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table!”
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:''27 “Yes, Lord,” she said, “yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table!”
28 Then Jesus replied to her, “Woman, your faith is great. Let it be done for you as you want.” And from that moment her daughter was cured.
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:''28 Then Jesus replied to her, “Woman, your faith is great. Let it be done for you as you want.” And from that moment her daughter was cured.
  
 
This is also consistent with the context of the Book of Malachi as it is intended for the Nation of Israel, and NOT for the Gentile churches.
 
This is also consistent with the context of the Book of Malachi as it is intended for the Nation of Israel, and NOT for the Gentile churches.
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Hebrews 1:1-2
 
Hebrews 1:1-2
1 Long ago God spoke to the fathers by the prophets at different times and in different ways.
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:''1 Long ago God spoke to the fathers by the prophets at different times and in different ways.
2 In these last days, He has spoken to us by His Son. God has appointed Him heir of all things and made the universe through Him.
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:''2 In these last days, He has spoken to us by His Son. God has appointed Him heir of all things and made the universe through Him.
  
 
The Apostle Paul reaffirms what Jesus has told us concerning prophets and the Mosaic Law, agreeing that prophets have been supplanted by the Word of God through the Holy Spirit.  How do we know the Holy Spirit is to carry this Word of God forward?
 
The Apostle Paul reaffirms what Jesus has told us concerning prophets and the Mosaic Law, agreeing that prophets have been supplanted by the Word of God through the Holy Spirit.  How do we know the Holy Spirit is to carry this Word of God forward?
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John 14:15-18
 
John 14:15-18
15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commands.
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:''15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commands.
16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever.
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:''16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever.
17 He is the Spirit of truth. The world is unable to receive Him because it doesn’t see Him or know Him. But you do know Him, because He remains with you and will be[i] in you.
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:''17 He is the Spirit of truth. The world is unable to receive Him because it doesn’t see Him or know Him. But you do know Him, because He remains with you and will be[i] in you.
18 I will not leave you as orphans; I am coming to you.
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:''18 I will not leave you as orphans; I am coming to you.
  
 
John 14:25-26
 
John 14:25-26
25 “I have spoken these things to you while I remain with you.
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:''25 “I have spoken these things to you while I remain with you.
26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit—the Father will send Him in My name—will teach you all things and remind you of everything I have told you.
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:''26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit—the Father will send Him in My name—will teach you all things and remind you of everything I have told you.
  
 
Jesus introduces the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost:
 
Jesus introduces the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost:
  
 
Acts 1:3-5
 
Acts 1:3-5
3 After He had suffered, He also presented Himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them during 40 days and speaking about the kingdom of God.
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:''3 After He had suffered, He also presented Himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them during 40 days and speaking about the kingdom of God.
4 While He was together with them, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the Father’s promise. “This,” He said, “is what you heard from Me;
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:''4 While He was together with them, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the Father’s promise. “This,” He said, “is what you heard from Me;
5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
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:''5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
  
 
And so, we see that the Apostle Paul reaffirms what Jesus taught.
 
And so, we see that the Apostle Paul reaffirms what Jesus taught.
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Ephesians 4:11-13
 
Ephesians 4:11-13
11 And He personally gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers,
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:''11 And He personally gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers,
12 for the training of the saints in the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ,
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:''12 for the training of the saints in the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ,
13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God’s Son, growing into a mature man with a stature measured by Christ’s fullness.
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:''13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God’s Son, growing into a mature man with a stature measured by Christ’s fullness.
  
 
But what do we know about how prophets are to behave today?  The Apostle Paul tells us this as well:
 
But what do we know about how prophets are to behave today?  The Apostle Paul tells us this as well:
  
1Corinthians 14:26-33
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1 Corinthians 14:26-33
26 What then is the conclusion, brothers? Whenever you come together, each one has a psalm, a teaching, a revelation, another language, or an interpretation. All things must be done for edification.
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:''26 What then is the conclusion, brothers? Whenever you come together, each one has a psalm, a teaching, a revelation, another language, or an interpretation. All things must be done for edification.
27 If any person speaks in another language, there should be only two, or at the most three, each in turn, and someone must interpret.
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:''27 If any person speaks in another language, there should be only two, or at the most three, each in turn, and someone must interpret.
28 But if there is no interpreter, that person should keep silent in the church and speak to himself and to God.
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:''28 But if there is no interpreter, that person should keep silent in the church and speak to himself and to God.
29 Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should evaluate.
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:''29 Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should evaluate.
30 But if something has been revealed to another person sitting there, the first prophet should be silent.
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:''30 But if something has been revealed to another person sitting there, the first prophet should be silent.
31 For you can all prophesy one by one, so that everyone may learn and everyone may be encouraged.
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:''31 For you can all prophesy one by one, so that everyone may learn and everyone may be encouraged.
32 And the prophets’ spirits are under the control of the prophets,
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:''32 And the prophets’ spirits are under the control of the prophets,
33 since God is not a God of disorder but of peace.
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:''33 since God is not a God of disorder but of peace.
  
 
And when do we see that the transition between the Law of Moses and a prophet to carry God’s word to His people and when a prophet is no longer required?
 
And when do we see that the transition between the Law of Moses and a prophet to carry God’s word to His people and when a prophet is no longer required?
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Matthew 27:50-51
 
Matthew 27:50-51
50 Jesus shouted again with a loud voice and gave up His spirit.
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:''50 Jesus shouted again with a loud voice and gave up His spirit.
51 Suddenly, the curtain of the sanctuary was split in two from top to bottom; the earth quaked and the rocks were split.
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:''51 Suddenly, the curtain of the sanctuary was split in two from top to bottom; the earth quaked and the rocks were split.
  
 
The significance of the curtain in the Sanctuary splitting from top to bottom cannot be over emphasized.  In the OLD COVENANT, there were two ways in which God’s people interacted with God.  1) Through the High Priest in the Holy of Holies, and 2) through specific instructions and proclamations from God’s prophets.  We have seen how God changed the requirement for a prophet by sending the Holy Spirit and charging Him to carry God’s Word forward.  We see in this Scripture how God moved from Mosaic Law where remission of sin was accomplished through sacrificial offering, to the grace of God and direct access to God.  The Holy of Holies was immediately made available to everyone when the curtain was torn at the moment of Christ’s sacrifice.
 
The significance of the curtain in the Sanctuary splitting from top to bottom cannot be over emphasized.  In the OLD COVENANT, there were two ways in which God’s people interacted with God.  1) Through the High Priest in the Holy of Holies, and 2) through specific instructions and proclamations from God’s prophets.  We have seen how God changed the requirement for a prophet by sending the Holy Spirit and charging Him to carry God’s Word forward.  We see in this Scripture how God moved from Mosaic Law where remission of sin was accomplished through sacrificial offering, to the grace of God and direct access to God.  The Holy of Holies was immediately made available to everyone when the curtain was torn at the moment of Christ’s sacrifice.
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Matthew 28:18-20
 
Matthew 28:18-20
18 Then Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
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:''18 Then Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
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:''19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
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:''20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
  
 
Here Jesus is clear.  While Jesus’ ministry was to the Nation of Israel as He told us in Matthew 15, He commissioned his disciples to make disciples of ALL NATIONS, including the Gentiles and those who knew nothing about Mosaic Law.  The Nation of Israel rejected the ministry of Jesus and failed to accept Him as the Messiah.  This was not true in individual cases such as the Bereans who were Jews but who accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ through Paul and Silas.  But it is universally accepted that the Nation of Israel rejected the ministry of Jesus Christ.
 
Here Jesus is clear.  While Jesus’ ministry was to the Nation of Israel as He told us in Matthew 15, He commissioned his disciples to make disciples of ALL NATIONS, including the Gentiles and those who knew nothing about Mosaic Law.  The Nation of Israel rejected the ministry of Jesus and failed to accept Him as the Messiah.  This was not true in individual cases such as the Bereans who were Jews but who accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ through Paul and Silas.  But it is universally accepted that the Nation of Israel rejected the ministry of Jesus Christ.
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Galatians 2:11 21
 
Galatians 2:11 21
11 But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face because he stood condemned,  
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:''11 But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face because he stood condemned,  
12 For he regularly ate with the Gentiles before certain men came from James. However, when they came, he withdrew and separated himself, because he feared those from the circumcision party.
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:''12 For he regularly ate with the Gentiles before certain men came from James. However, when they came, he withdrew and separated himself, because he feared those from the circumcision party.
13 Then the rest of the Jews joined his hypocrisy, so that even Barnabas was carried away by their hypocrisy.
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:''13 Then the rest of the Jews joined his hypocrisy, so that even Barnabas was carried away by their hypocrisy.
14 But when I saw that they were deviating from the truth of the gospel, I told Cephas in front of everyone, “If you, who are a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you compel Gentiles to live like Jews?”
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:''14 But when I saw that they were deviating from the truth of the gospel, I told Cephas in front of everyone, “If you, who are a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you compel Gentiles to live like Jews?”
15 We who are Jews by birth and not “Gentile sinners”
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:''15 We who are Jews by birth and not “Gentile sinners”
16 know that no one is justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ. And we have believed in Christ Jesus so that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no human being will be justified.
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:''16 know that no one is justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ. And we have believed in Christ Jesus so that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no human being will be justified.
17 But if we ourselves are also found to be “sinners” while seeking to be justified by Christ, is Christ then a promoter of sin? Absolutely not!
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:''17 But if we ourselves are also found to be “sinners” while seeking to be justified by Christ, is Christ then a promoter of sin? Absolutely not!
18 If I rebuild the system I tore down, I show myself to be a lawbreaker.
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:''18 If I rebuild the system I tore down, I show myself to be a lawbreaker.
19 For through the law I have died to the law, so that I might live for God. I have been crucified with Christ
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:''19 For through the law I have died to the law, so that I might live for God. I have been crucified with Christ
20 and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
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:''20 and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died for nothing.
+
:''21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died for nothing.
  
 
Here we see that the Apostles Paul and Peter (Cephas) disagreed about projection of the Law of Moses onto Gentiles who were not raised with Mosaic Law.  The Apostle Paul’s argument supports the elimination of the requirement for Mosaic Law and animal sacrifice for the redemption of sin and speaks to its replacement from the grace of God through the Holy Spirit.
 
Here we see that the Apostles Paul and Peter (Cephas) disagreed about projection of the Law of Moses onto Gentiles who were not raised with Mosaic Law.  The Apostle Paul’s argument supports the elimination of the requirement for Mosaic Law and animal sacrifice for the redemption of sin and speaks to its replacement from the grace of God through the Holy Spirit.
Line 640: Line 639:
 
There are denominations in the message, one of which believes that what was “prophesied” by William Branham prior to publishing his book called “The Exposition of the Seven Church Ages”, first published in January 1965 are not divinely inspired, but are Branham’s opinions and suggestions.  Two issues arise from this thought process.  The first is that Branham spoke using his self-proclaimed Scriptural authority of “THUS SAITH THE LORD” many many times in his sermons prior to the publishing of this series of sermons and the book.  How is it that Branham proclaims himself as a prophet of God, even speaks about his commissioning as a healer, and as God’s “messenger”, prior to this book being published and yet what he proclaimed prior to this book is not valid?  There is no Scriptural basis for this thought process at all.  And, second, Branham’s book was published originally in January 1965 as an EDITED compilation of sermons which were preached by William Branham.  Now, if Branham was INFALLIBLE as he stated in the book, if what he spoke was absolutely truth, then why were the edits necessary?
 
There are denominations in the message, one of which believes that what was “prophesied” by William Branham prior to publishing his book called “The Exposition of the Seven Church Ages”, first published in January 1965 are not divinely inspired, but are Branham’s opinions and suggestions.  Two issues arise from this thought process.  The first is that Branham spoke using his self-proclaimed Scriptural authority of “THUS SAITH THE LORD” many many times in his sermons prior to the publishing of this series of sermons and the book.  How is it that Branham proclaims himself as a prophet of God, even speaks about his commissioning as a healer, and as God’s “messenger”, prior to this book being published and yet what he proclaimed prior to this book is not valid?  There is no Scriptural basis for this thought process at all.  And, second, Branham’s book was published originally in January 1965 as an EDITED compilation of sermons which were preached by William Branham.  Now, if Branham was INFALLIBLE as he stated in the book, if what he spoke was absolutely truth, then why were the edits necessary?
  
“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.”  An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age
+
:''“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.”  An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age
  
 
What is even more important than the edits or the fact that a denomination of the message of William Branham believing that sermons prior to the publication of this book are marginally important is that this book is a near mirror image, some would even say in many cases a “word for word plagiarism” of books before it was published.  This is important because this doctrine of the seven church “AGES” is credited to Branham as his most critical and important revelation from God.   
 
What is even more important than the edits or the fact that a denomination of the message of William Branham believing that sermons prior to the publication of this book are marginally important is that this book is a near mirror image, some would even say in many cases a “word for word plagiarism” of books before it was published.  This is important because this doctrine of the seven church “AGES” is credited to Branham as his most critical and important revelation from God.   
Line 658: Line 657:
 
What we know is that Branham mentioned Clarence Larkin in his sermons:
 
What we know is that Branham mentioned Clarence Larkin in his sermons:
  
“And I’m very grateful to Mr. Smith, of the Adventist church, for his views. I’m very grateful to Dr. Larkin, of his views. I’m grateful to all these great scholars, for their views on this.”  61-0806 - The Seventieth Week Of Daniel
+
:''“And I’m very grateful to Mr. Smith, of the Adventist church, for his views. I’m very grateful to Dr. Larkin, of his views. I’m grateful to all these great scholars, for their views on this.”  61-0806 - The Seventieth Week Of Daniel
  
“I had my own idea, as every minister does, of reading maybe what other men had said; and believing as much as I possible, with them, on the things that they had drawed up, their conclusion. I had read the book of Mr. Smith, Uriah Smith, which is the Adventist teacher, and I had read his—his thoughts on it. And I had read Mr. Larkin. I had read, oh, so many different ones, of their commentaries on This. But, somehow or other’n, I thought I had a—a little view of it, myself, that might be of places different. But trying one time, just speaking three subjects, the first…or the four subjects of the four horse riders. I preached on it four nights, one on one horse, and the other.”  64-0719M - The Feast Of The Trumpets
+
:''“I had my own idea, as every minister does, of reading maybe what other men had said; and believing as much as I possible, with them, on the things that they had drawed up, their conclusion. I had read the book of Mr. Smith, Uriah Smith, which is the Adventist teacher, and I had read his—his thoughts on it. And I had read Mr. Larkin. I had read, oh, so many different ones, of their commentaries on This. But, somehow or other’n, I thought I had a—a little view of it, myself, that might be of places different. But trying one time, just speaking three subjects, the first…or the four subjects of the four horse riders. I preached on it four nights, one on one horse, and the other.”  64-0719M - The Feast Of The Trumpets
  
 
What is interesting is how Clarence Larkin defined these dispensational “ages” contrasted with what Branham, taught as his “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD”.
 
What is interesting is how Clarence Larkin defined these dispensational “ages” contrasted with what Branham, taught as his “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD”.
  
 
LARKIN:
 
LARKIN:
“The character of the Church at Ephesus is a fair outline of the Church Period from A. D. 70 to A. D. 170.” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 128 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
+
:''“The character of the Church at Ephesus is a fair outline of the Church Period from A. D. 70 to A. D. 170.” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 128 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
  
 
BRANHAM:
 
BRANHAM:
“Now, the first church age started about A.D. 53, when Paul established the church in--in Ephesus... and the church age lapped over to 170.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
+
:''“Now, the first church age started about A.D. 53, when Paul established the church in--in Ephesus... and the church age lapped over to 170.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
  
 
***NOTE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LARKIN’S START OF THIS CHURCH “AGE” AT 70 A.D. AND BRANHAM’S START OF THIS CHURCH AGE AT 53 A.D.***
 
***NOTE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LARKIN’S START OF THIS CHURCH “AGE” AT 70 A.D. AND BRANHAM’S START OF THIS CHURCH AGE AT 53 A.D.***
  
 
LARKIN:
 
LARKIN:
“...the Smyrna Church...extended from A. D. 170 to Constantine A. D. 312.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 128 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
+
:''“...the Smyrna Church...extended from A. D. 170 to Constantine A. D. 312.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 128 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
  
 
BRANHAM:
 
BRANHAM:
“...then started in the Smyrna Church Age which lasted from A.D. 170 until A.D. 312.”  THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
+
:''“...then started in the Smyrna Church Age which lasted from A.D. 170 until A.D. 312.”  THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
  
 
LARKIN:
 
LARKIN:
“...Pergamos...extends from the accession of Constantine, A. D. 312 to A. D. 606, when Boniface III was crowned “Universal Bishop.””  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 129 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
+
:''“...Pergamos...extends from the accession of Constantine, A. D. 312 to A. D. 606, when Boniface III was crowned “Universal Bishop.””  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 129 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
  
 
BRANHAM:
 
BRANHAM:
“Then come in the Pergamos Church Age, and the Pergamos Church Age begin at 312 and lasted till A.D. 606.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
+
:''“Then come in the Pergamos Church Age, and the Pergamos Church Age begin at 312 and lasted till A.D. 606.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
  
 
LARKIN:
 
LARKIN:
“The Message to the Church at Thyatira. This Period extended from A. D. 606 to the Reformation A. D. 1520.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 130 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
+
:''“The Message to the Church at Thyatira. This Period extended from A. D. 606 to the Reformation A. D. 1520.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 130 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
  
 
BRANHAM:
 
BRANHAM:
“Then come in the Thyatira Church Age, and the church age of Thyatira begin at 606 and went to 1520, the dark ages.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
+
:''“Then come in the Thyatira Church Age, and the church age of Thyatira begin at 606 and went to 1520, the dark ages.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
  
 
LARKIN:
 
LARKIN:
“The “Sardis Period” extended from A. D. 1520 to about A. D. 1750.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 130 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
+
:''“The “Sardis Period” extended from A. D. 1520 to about A. D. 1750.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 130 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
  
 
BRANHAM:
 
BRANHAM:
“And then the Sardis Church Age begin at 1520 and lasted till 1750, the Lutheran age.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
+
:''“And then the Sardis Church Age begin at 1520 and lasted till 1750, the Lutheran age.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
  
 
LARKIN:
 
LARKIN:
“The “Philadelphia Period” covers the time between A. D. 1750 and A. D. 1900.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 131 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
+
:''“The “Philadelphia Period” covers the time between A. D. 1750 and A. D. 1900.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 131 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
  
 
BRANHAM:
 
BRANHAM:
“Then from 1750, the next age come in was the Philadelphian, Wesley age; that begin at 1750 and lasted till 1906”. THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
+
:''“Then from 1750, the next age come in was the Philadelphian, Wesley age; that begin at 1750 and lasted till 1906”. THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
  
 
***NOTE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE ENDS OF THE CHURCH AGES, LARKIN ENDS THIS CHURCH “AGE” IN 1900, BRANHAM ENDS THIS CHURCH “AGE” IN 1906***
 
***NOTE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE ENDS OF THE CHURCH AGES, LARKIN ENDS THIS CHURCH “AGE” IN 1900, BRANHAM ENDS THIS CHURCH “AGE” IN 1906***
  
 
LARKIN:
 
LARKIN:
“The character of the Church today is Laodicean, and as the Laodicean Period is to continue until the Church of the “New-Born” is taken out, we cannot hope for any great change until the Lord comes back.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 133 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
+
:''“The character of the Church today is Laodicean, and as the Laodicean Period is to continue until the Church of the “New-Born” is taken out, we cannot hope for any great change until the Lord comes back.”  Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 133 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).
  
 
BRANHAM:
 
BRANHAM:
“And at 1906 the Laodicean church age set in, and I don't know when it'll end, but I predict it'll be done by 1977. I predict, not the Lord told me, but I predict it according to a vision that was showed me some years ago...” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
+
:''“And at 1906 the Laodicean church age set in, and I don't know when it'll end, but I predict it'll be done by 1977. I predict, not the Lord told me, but I predict it according to a vision that was showed me some years ago...” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
  
 
Aside from two very discrete differences in the start/end date of church ages, Branham’s “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD” concerning the church “ages” is exactly the same as Clarence Larkin’s representation of these post Acts Chapter 2 dispensational ages.
 
Aside from two very discrete differences in the start/end date of church ages, Branham’s “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD” concerning the church “ages” is exactly the same as Clarence Larkin’s representation of these post Acts Chapter 2 dispensational ages.
Line 716: Line 715:
 
Branham did extend the notion of these dispensational periods by adding what Branham called the Church “Age” Messengers.  These messengers were critical because Branham promoted himself as the Seventh Church “Age” Prophet “Messenger”:
 
Branham did extend the notion of these dispensational periods by adding what Branham called the Church “Age” Messengers.  These messengers were critical because Branham promoted himself as the Seventh Church “Age” Prophet “Messenger”:
  
“The trouble of it is, you Pentecostal people, you Baptists, you Methodists, you've failed to recognize your God-given privilege. Hear me. THUS SAITH THE LORD, you believe it with all your heart. He promised it in the last day. Hasn't been for two thousand years, because the Bible said it wouldn't be. But Jesus said... As it was in the days of Sodom, when that Angel come, turned His back to the tent, and asked for Sarah, and told what she said in the building... How many knows that? Jesus said, "As it was in the days of Sodom, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of man." When? Just before Sodom burned. That's just before this world's going to burn. The whole unbelieving world will be--go into chaos and burn with fervent heat. We know that. And just before that time...
+
:''“The trouble of it is, you Pentecostal people, you Baptists, you Methodists, you've failed to recognize your God-given privilege. Hear me. THUS SAITH THE LORD, you believe it with all your heart. He promised it in the last day. Hasn't been for two thousand years, because the Bible said it wouldn't be. But Jesus said... As it was in the days of Sodom, when that Angel come, turned His back to the tent, and asked for Sarah, and told what she said in the building... How many knows that? Jesus said, "As it was in the days of Sodom, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of man." When? Just before Sodom burned. That's just before this world's going to burn. The whole unbelieving world will be--go into chaos and burn with fervent heat. We know that. And just before that time...
 
Remember, THUS SAITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, this is your last sign. Write it in your Bible. And if something rises besides this, and greater than this, call me a false prophet.  That's quite a statement. I watch what I say. I'm in contact with better than ten million people around the world (See?), so I have to say that; and I know I didn't say that myself.”  61-0414 - Be Not Afraid, it is I
 
Remember, THUS SAITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, this is your last sign. Write it in your Bible. And if something rises besides this, and greater than this, call me a false prophet.  That's quite a statement. I watch what I say. I'm in contact with better than ten million people around the world (See?), so I have to say that; and I know I didn't say that myself.”  61-0414 - Be Not Afraid, it is I
  
“This is the last sign. Remember, THUS SAITH THE LORD! Did you ever hear me say that but what it was true? You are seeing your last sign. That's Scriptural. You've seen your last sign, Pentecost.”  64-0411 - Spiritual Amnesia
+
:''“This is the last sign. Remember, THUS SAITH THE LORD! Did you ever hear me say that but what it was true? You are seeing your last sign. That's Scriptural. You've seen your last sign, Pentecost.”  64-0411 - Spiritual Amnesia
  
 
Here are the messengers of the church “ages” as defined by Branham:
 
Here are the messengers of the church “ages” as defined by Branham:
  
Ephesus  53 - 170 AD Messenger Paul (5 AD - 67 AD)
+
*Ephesus  53 - 170 AD Messenger Paul (5 AD - 67 AD)
Smyrna  170 - 312 AD Messenger Irenaeus (130 AD - 200 AD)
+
*Smyrna  170 - 312 AD Messenger Irenaeus (130 AD - 200 AD)
Pergamos 312 - 606 AD Messenger Martin (316 AD  - 397 AD)
+
*Pergamos 312 - 606 AD Messenger Martin (316 AD  - 397 AD)
Thyatira 606 - 1520 Messenger Columba (521 AD - 597 AD)
+
*Thyatira 606 - 1520 Messenger Columba (521 AD - 597 AD)
Sardis 1520 - 1750 Messenger Martin Luther (1438 - 1546)
+
*Sardis 1520 - 1750 Messenger Martin Luther (1438 - 1546)
Philadelphia 1750 - 1906 Messenger John Wesley (1703 - 1791
+
*Philadelphia 1750 - 1906 Messenger John Wesley (1703 - 1791
Laodicea 1906 - Present Messenger William Branham (circa 1909 - 1965)
+
*Laodicea 1906 - Present Messenger William Branham (circa 1909 - 1965)
  
 
So, was the fact that there were messengers assigned to the church “ages” of dispensation Branham’s “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD”?  What exactly was the “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD” to Branham which clearly vindicates him as a prophet of God when so many other dispensationalists and prophet “Elijah Spirits” like Larkin provided exactly the same information well prior to Branham preaching his sermons and publishing his book concerning the Exposition of the Seven Church Ages??
 
So, was the fact that there were messengers assigned to the church “ages” of dispensation Branham’s “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD”?  What exactly was the “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD” to Branham which clearly vindicates him as a prophet of God when so many other dispensationalists and prophet “Elijah Spirits” like Larkin provided exactly the same information well prior to Branham preaching his sermons and publishing his book concerning the Exposition of the Seven Church Ages??
Line 738: Line 737:
  
 
Revelation 1:10-11(HCSB)  
 
Revelation 1:10-11(HCSB)  
10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard a loud voice behind me like a trumpet  
+
:''10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard a loud voice behind me like a trumpet  
11 saying, “Write on a scroll what you see and send it to the seven churches: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”
+
:''11 saying, “Write on a scroll what you see and send it to the seven churches: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”
  
 
I guess John the Revelator didn’t get the memo.
 
I guess John the Revelator didn’t get the memo.
Line 749: Line 748:
 
John Wesley labeled William Branham’s understanding on the Godhead as:
 
John Wesley labeled William Branham’s understanding on the Godhead as:
  
"...Blasphemy, joined with consummate nonsense.”  ~ Thoughts on the writings of Baron Swedenborg, by John Wesley, Wakefield, May 8, 1782.
+
:''"...Blasphemy, joined with consummate nonsense.”  ~ Thoughts on the writings of Baron Swedenborg, by John Wesley, Wakefield, May 8, 1782.
  
 
We know this because William Branham's doctrine on the Godhead was very close to Emmanuel Swedenborg's doctrine on the Godhead, and John Wesley concluded the following about Swedenborg's doctrine:
 
We know this because William Branham's doctrine on the Godhead was very close to Emmanuel Swedenborg's doctrine on the Godhead, and John Wesley concluded the following about Swedenborg's doctrine:
  
“O my brethren, let none of you that fear God recommend such a writer anymore; much less labor to make the deadly poison palatable, by sweetening it with all care! All his folly and nonsense we may excuse; but not his making God a liar; not his contradicting, in so open and flagrant a manner, the whole oracles of God! True, his tales are often exceeding lively, and as entertaining as the tales of...the fairies! But I dare not give up my Bible for them; and I must give up one or the other. If the preceding extracts are from God, then the Bible is only a fable! But if all Scriptures are given by inspiration of God, then let these dreams sink into the pit from whence they came."  ~ Thoughts on the writings of Baron Swedenborg, by John Wesley, Wakefield, May 8, 1782.
+
:''“O my brethren, let none of you that fear God recommend such a writer anymore; much less labor to make the deadly poison palatable, by sweetening it with all care! All his folly and nonsense we may excuse; but not his making God a liar; not his contradicting, in so open and flagrant a manner, the whole oracles of God! True, his tales are often exceeding lively, and as entertaining as the tales of...the fairies! But I dare not give up my Bible for them; and I must give up one or the other. If the preceding extracts are from God, then the Bible is only a fable! But if all Scriptures are given by inspiration of God, then let these dreams sink into the pit from whence they came."  ~ Thoughts on the writings of Baron Swedenborg, by John Wesley, Wakefield, May 8, 1782.
  
 
Again, can the followers of Wesley’s message according to Branham actually be saved because they disagree with a fundamental doctrine of William Branham?  Remember, Branham said you cannot be saved unless you follow HIS doctrines and HIS teachings:
 
Again, can the followers of Wesley’s message according to Branham actually be saved because they disagree with a fundamental doctrine of William Branham?  Remember, Branham said you cannot be saved unless you follow HIS doctrines and HIS teachings:
  
“Now, let us all pray. Lord, with our heads bowed, just now, it's got to be known that Your Scripture's the truth, and I've told the truth of It, or either, I am wrong and a false prophet, or Your Scripture has misled us. Now, Lord, we know that that's not so. We know that Your Scriptures are Truth.”  LED.BY.THE.SPIRIT_ LA.CA TUESDAY_ 59-0407
+
:''“Now, let us all pray. Lord, with our heads bowed, just now, it's got to be known that Your Scripture's the truth, and I've told the truth of It, or either, I am wrong and a false prophet, or Your Scripture has misled us. Now, Lord, we know that that's not so. We know that Your Scriptures are Truth.”  LED.BY.THE.SPIRIT_ LA.CA TUESDAY_ 59-0407
  
“Remember, I'm not a false prophet. I tell the truth. God wouldn't lie. And see if it isn't going to be greater that it has ever has been at any time.”  GOD.HATH.A.PROVIDED.WAY_ JEFF.IN SUNDAY_ 56-0108
+
:''“Remember, I'm not a false prophet. I tell the truth. God wouldn't lie. And see if it isn't going to be greater that it has ever has been at any time.”  GOD.HATH.A.PROVIDED.WAY_ JEFF.IN SUNDAY_ 56-0108
  
 
Branham told us that to NOT believe in his teaching was to Blaspheme the Holy Spirit:
 
Branham told us that to NOT believe in his teaching was to Blaspheme the Holy Spirit:
  
“...She said, "Reverend Branham, if I want somebody, talk to me about like that, I'll get somebody that's got some sense; not you." I said, "Very well. I have done all I can do. Remember, sister, you--if you blaspheme the Holy Ghost, you'll never be saved.”  53-0611 SHOW.US.THE.FATHER.AND.IT'LL.SATISFY.US_ CONNERSVILLE.IN
+
:''“...She said, "Reverend Branham, if I want somebody, talk to me about like that, I'll get somebody that's got some sense; not you." I said, "Very well. I have done all I can do. Remember, sister, you--if you blaspheme the Holy Ghost, you'll never be saved.”  53-0611 SHOW.US.THE.FATHER.AND.IT'LL.SATISFY.US_ CONNERSVILLE.IN
  
 
and in this case, you can’t be saved:
 
and in this case, you can’t be saved:
  
 
Mark 3:28-30 (HCSB)  
 
Mark 3:28-30 (HCSB)  
28 I assure you: People will be forgiven for all sins and whatever blasphemies they may blaspheme.  
+
:''28 I assure you: People will be forgiven for all sins and whatever blasphemies they may blaspheme.  
29 But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin”—  
+
:''29 But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin”—  
30 because they were saying, “He has an unclean spirit.”  
+
:''30 because they were saying, “He has an unclean spirit.”  
  
 
Let’s speak about the nature of the character of the “messengers”.  Here William Branham tells us that the messengers were all prophets:
 
Let’s speak about the nature of the character of the “messengers”.  Here William Branham tells us that the messengers were all prophets:
  
“and… see the plummet in the hands of Zerubbabel with whose—with those seven; these are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth. The seven eyes—eyes mean seeing. Seeing means prophets, seers. This Lamb had seven horns, and on each horn had an eye: seven eyes. What is it? Christ and His Bride. Seven Church Ages, out of there was seven prophets that went forth, seven seers, eyes. So the last one must be a seer. All right.”  63-0317E - The Breach Between The Seven Church Ages And The Seven Seals
+
:''“and… see the plummet in the hands of Zerubbabel with whose—with those seven; these are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth. The seven eyes—eyes mean seeing. Seeing means prophets, seers. This Lamb had seven horns, and on each horn had an eye: seven eyes. What is it? Christ and His Bride. Seven Church Ages, out of there was seven prophets that went forth, seven seers, eyes. So the last one must be a seer. All right.”  63-0317E - The Breach Between The Seven Church Ages And The Seven Seals
  
 
The VERY NEXT DAY, Branham tells us that the messengers EXCEPT HIM were In fact NOT PROPHETS but were “REFORMERS”:
 
The VERY NEXT DAY, Branham tells us that the messengers EXCEPT HIM were In fact NOT PROPHETS but were “REFORMERS”:
  
“The reformers came to reform the last fallen church age preceding them. And then after the reformers come and reform the—the church age from where it was and is went back into the world, then they start a new church age: always done it, always. Now, we went through that. See? In other words, here'd been a Catholic church age, of the Roman Catholic church. Along come Luther, a reformer. He's called a reformer. And what does he do? He starts right out there a-hammering away, and when he does, he protests the church, and the first thing you know, what does he do? He builds the same thing that he come to drive out of: another church. Then they have another church age. Then the first thing you know, here comes… The church age is in such a mess, along comes John Wesley, another reformer (See?), builds another church age. Get what I mean? Another church age is built up. They're all reformers.  Notice. This last message of the last church age is not a reformer; he is a prophet, not a reformer. Show me where one prophet ever started a church age. He's not a reformer; he is a prophet. Others was reformers but not prophets. If they would've been, the Word of the Lord comes to the prophet; that's the reason they continued on in the baptism in Father, Son, Holy Ghost, and all these other things, because they were reformers and not prophets. But yet they were great men of God and saw the need of the day that they lived in, and God anointed them, and they sent out there and tore those things to pieces. But the full Word of God never come to them, because they was not prophets. They were reformers. 194 But in the last days it'll have to be a prophet to take up the mysteries of God, bring it back, because the mysteries was only re—known by prophets. So it has to be this fellow come. See what I mean now? He can't be a reformer; it's got to be a prophet, because it's got to be somebody that's gifted and set there that catches the Word.”  63-0318 - The First Seal, para. 191-192
+
:''“The reformers came to reform the last fallen church age preceding them. And then after the reformers come and reform the—the church age from where it was and is went back into the world, then they start a new church age: always done it, always. Now, we went through that. See? In other words, here'd been a Catholic church age, of the Roman Catholic church. Along come Luther, a reformer. He's called a reformer. And what does he do? He starts right out there a-hammering away, and when he does, he protests the church, and the first thing you know, what does he do? He builds the same thing that he come to drive out of: another church. Then they have another church age. Then the first thing you know, here comes… The church age is in such a mess, along comes John Wesley, another reformer (See?), builds another church age. Get what I mean? Another church age is built up. They're all reformers.  Notice. This last message of the last church age is not a reformer; he is a prophet, not a reformer. Show me where one prophet ever started a church age. He's not a reformer; he is a prophet. Others was reformers but not prophets. If they would've been, the Word of the Lord comes to the prophet; that's the reason they continued on in the baptism in Father, Son, Holy Ghost, and all these other things, because they were reformers and not prophets. But yet they were great men of God and saw the need of the day that they lived in, and God anointed them, and they sent out there and tore those things to pieces. But the full Word of God never come to them, because they was not prophets. They were reformers. 194 But in the last days it'll have to be a prophet to take up the mysteries of God, bring it back, because the mysteries was only re—known by prophets. So it has to be this fellow come. See what I mean now? He can't be a reformer; it's got to be a prophet, because it's got to be somebody that's gifted and set there that catches the Word.”  63-0318 - The First Seal, para. 191-192
  
 
Even the denomination of the message of William Branham has to be somewhat confused.  Were the “messengers” prophets or reformers?
 
Even the denomination of the message of William Branham has to be somewhat confused.  Were the “messengers” prophets or reformers?
Line 787: Line 786:
  
 
Revelation 10:7 (KJV)  
 
Revelation 10:7 (KJV)  
7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.
+
:''7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.
  
 
Because message believers and ministers promote the fact that Branham is the seventh “church age” messenger, then they insert him into this Scripture which speaks about John’s prophetic revelation.  But there are issues, not the least of which is there is no such mention of a “church age” throughout Scripture.  There are “churches in Asia”, and there are angels associated with these seven churches.  But there is no mention, no indication of any sort, that there are “church ages”.  But I digress…  
 
Because message believers and ministers promote the fact that Branham is the seventh “church age” messenger, then they insert him into this Scripture which speaks about John’s prophetic revelation.  But there are issues, not the least of which is there is no such mention of a “church age” throughout Scripture.  There are “churches in Asia”, and there are angels associated with these seven churches.  But there is no mention, no indication of any sort, that there are “church ages”.  But I digress…  
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And here is how one can determine Scripturally that the “church age” is not a prophetic construct:
 
And here is how one can determine Scripturally that the “church age” is not a prophetic construct:
  
Revelation 1:4 "John, to the seven churches that are in Asia."
+
Revelation 1:4  
 +
:''"John, to the seven churches that are in Asia."
  
Revelation 1:11 “Write what you see in a book and send it to the seven churches, to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.”
+
Revelation 1:11  
 +
:''“Write what you see in a book and send it to the seven churches, to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.”
  
 
So, Scripture confirms that there are seven physical churches in Asia.  Now, here is how John is helped to determine present day from future or prophetic vision:
 
So, Scripture confirms that there are seven physical churches in Asia.  Now, here is how John is helped to determine present day from future or prophetic vision:
  
Revelation 1:19 "Write therefore the things that you have seen, those THAT ARE and those THAT ARE TO TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS." [emphasis mine]
+
Revelation 1:19  
 +
:''"Write therefore the things that you have seen, those THAT ARE and those THAT ARE TO TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS." [emphasis mine]
  
 
In Revelation Chapters 2 & 3, John writes all of the things he was commissioned to say to each of the seven churches, with Laodicea wrapping up the end of chapter 3. In other words, the Church at Laodicea is a present tense physical church.  It isn’t until Chapter 4 that the prophecy actually takes place in John’s future.  Read carefully the first verse of Chapter 4:
 
In Revelation Chapters 2 & 3, John writes all of the things he was commissioned to say to each of the seven churches, with Laodicea wrapping up the end of chapter 3. In other words, the Church at Laodicea is a present tense physical church.  It isn’t until Chapter 4 that the prophecy actually takes place in John’s future.  Read carefully the first verse of Chapter 4:
  
Revelation 4:1 "After this I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven! And the first voice, which I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS.” [emphasis mine]
+
Revelation 4:1  
 +
:''"After this I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven! And the first voice, which I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS.” [emphasis mine]
  
Remember Revelation 1:19? "write therefore the things you have seen, those THAT ARE and those THAT ARE TO TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS."...
+
Remember Revelation 1:19? ''"write therefore the things you have seen, those THAT ARE and those THAT ARE TO TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS."...
  
 
Revelation 2&3 were the things "that are,”, referring to things, people and places that existed at the time John had his vision, while chapter 4 begins the things "that are to take place after this" as is indicated by the text itself!
 
Revelation 2&3 were the things "that are,”, referring to things, people and places that existed at the time John had his vision, while chapter 4 begins the things "that are to take place after this" as is indicated by the text itself!
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Revelation 22:17-19 (KJV)  
 
Revelation 22:17-19 (KJV)  
17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.  
+
:''17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.  
18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:  
+
:''18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:  
19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.   
+
:''19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.   
  
 
Even though the word “age” is a small word, it is added to Scripture by Larkin, Branham, and other post-Acts Chapter 2 dispensationalists.  The consequences of adding words to John’s Revelation are pretty dire and rather avoidable by not inserting phrases like CHURCH “AGES”.
 
Even though the word “age” is a small word, it is added to Scripture by Larkin, Branham, and other post-Acts Chapter 2 dispensationalists.  The consequences of adding words to John’s Revelation are pretty dire and rather avoidable by not inserting phrases like CHURCH “AGES”.

Latest revision as of 20:07, 30 July 2020

On December 22, 2019, Jason Watkins, the pastor of Bethel Tabernacle, a message church in Beaufort, South Carolina posted a letter on Facebook post to a minister who had left the message (click here to read Jasons' original post on Facebook)

Tim Kraus, one of the co-hosts of the Off The Shelf podcast, having read Jason Watkins' open letter which stated that no one could produce anything Branham taught which was not aligned with God's Word, sent a message to the Bethel Tabernacle Facebook page with his email address. Jason contacted Tim with his personal email so they could send email back and forth.

Jason told Tim that he would be glad to clarify and explain any Scripture to me that I could present.

What follows is a copy of Tim's emails to Jason in which Tim focused on the Scriptural comparisons of what Branham said, and specifically asked Jason for Scriptural definitions and explanations demonstrating the support for Branham's assertion as a prophet of God.

After Tim submitted his first email to Jason, he never heard back from him again.

The emails below are identical to those sent to Jason Watkins with the following additions:

  1. Footnote references have been added
  2. Some minor formatting has been added to make the text easier to read; and
  3. A few minor spelling mistakes and typos have been corrected.

Email #1 - Sent April 22, 2020

Jason,

I appreciate your patience with me over the past couple of months. Events have certainly overtaken previous norms, and I have been completely engulfed in helping clients strategize about shifting workers to home based productivity with infrastructure, security, and metrics. At this moment, we are collecting data for “best practices” and “after-action reports”, and we are planning for the shift back to the office when it becomes safe and appropriate.

Some of the largest companies across several industry segments have pivoted from large campus infrastructures to 90% - 95% “work from home” models when this is possible given tooling and equipment requirements for the workers. This transition was surprisingly nimble and relied on workers being open to technology adoption which would allow this transition to occur, and relied on business units within these companies to rapidly adopt very innovative processes to provide products and services to their customers while maintaining or closely approximating previous services levels to which customers and end users have become accustomed.

In this “eye of the storm” moment, I thought it might be appropriate to start our conversation, understanding that there will be a moment when I will need to disengage from this discussion for a period of time to reorient clients toward campus infrastructures, or a new mix of campus models and virtually connected work forces. So, I would ask for your forbearance when I need to change focus.

In many ways, I find this situation instructive and informative concerning the Word of God. I will do my best to explain.

I am in a position to assist companies at the senior management level to strategize, implement, and measure success of major rapid development and deployment business and technology processes to meet in this case extreme changes in their previous paradigm and mind set to deliver their products and services. I help to evaluate technology, propose process changes based on an understanding concerning methodologies and “best practices”, and provide a low risk pathway to introducing innovation and new business models to navigate situations just like this. I form teams within these companies to develop a pathway to implementation, and analyze metrics and key performance objectives. I collect data and structure work products and reports to provide insight into the expectation that clients can have concerning the success of these projects. This work has been a forward-looking strategist role with event horizons of two to three years towards implementation. Today, that two to three model has been completely tossed on its head, and we have been forced to pivot aggressively with a goal to retain customers or clients, and trained work force. A potential serendipitous outcome of this shift has been the possibility of cost savings in terms of infrastructure and physical plant as these companies realize that a percentage of their work force can remain virtually connected.

For me to be in that position, there have been years of education, training, and experience with technology and business methodologies. This body of work has allowed me to demonstrate my value which has created a reputation of successful guidance and counsel at senior levels within organizations.

What I have discovered is methodologies for research concerning business models and technologies is not dramatically different from a method for studying the Word of God. I consider the Bereans of Acts 17:11 as the process analysts of the Book of Acts:

Acts 17:10-11 (HCSB)

As soon as it was night, the brothers sent Paul and Silas off to Berea. On arrival, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. The people here were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, since they welcomed the message with eagerness and examined the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.[1]

Notice in this example the Bereans examined the Scriptures daily. Notice also that they were open to change. These Jews found Scriptural truth in the message of the Apostles and Disciples concerning Jesus Christ by referring back to the books of the Bible, the very Word of God. Their belief system changed based on their informed daily study of Scriptures.

In a business and technology model process project, the first question to ask prior to accepting what is being presented is something like, “what qualifications does the person who is presenting this potential solution have to make such a recommendation?” Buy-in by senior management of the person making the recommendation is absolutely critical to the success of a project in today’s environment.

For the Bereans to have examined what they heard, they didn’t have the advantage of prior reputation concerning those who came to speak with them, after all, Christianity was a new phenomenon during that time. People who spoke of Jesus Christ and His Gospel didn’t have a massive body of work for them to rely on, and they were in a position to examine Scripture which was available to make sure what they heard was consistent with God’s Word. This makes their work even more impressive because they had the obligation to second guess everything that they heard.

Today we have the opportunity to ask questions and examine things that we hear. We not only have the opportunity to do that, Scripturally we have an obligation to do exactly that:

Matthew 7:15-23 (HCSB)

15 “Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves.
16 You’ll recognize them by their fruit. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes or figs from thistles?
17 In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, but a bad tree produces bad fruit.
18 A good tree can’t produce bad fruit; neither can a bad tree produce good fruit.
19 Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
20 So you’ll recognize them by their fruit.
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but ⌊only⌋ the one who does the will of My Father in heaven.
22 On that day many will say to Me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in Your name, drive out demons in Your name, and do many miracles in Your name?’
23 Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you! Depart from Me, you lawbreakers!’

Matthew 24:24-28 (HCSB)

24 False messiahs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.
25 Take note: I have told you in advance.
26 So if they tell you, ‘Look, He’s in the wilderness!’ don’t go out; ‘Look, He’s in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it.
27 For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.
28 Wherever the carcass is, there the vultures will gather.

1 Thessalonians 5:20-21 (HCSB)

20 Don’t despise prophecies,
21 but test all things. Hold on to what is good.

1 John 4:1 (HCSB)

1 Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to determine if they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

In these Scriptural examples, see Paul the Apostle, John the Evangelist, and even Jesus Christ Himself tell us that we need to question what we hear, and importantly we must examine who we hear from.

Popular culture holds that you will become what you associate with, that which in you permit yourself to be immersed. Your diet of what you read, what you hear, and what you see informs your opinion significantly. It’s a pretty good idea to make sure you are tapped into good sources.

As we start this discussion, my study methodology is to start at the beginning, examining the source of the information.

I am told over and over again that William Branham was a prophet of God (some have even said that he was God manifest in flesh on earth). I am told repeatedly that to question William Branham’s Scriptural authority is to blaspheme the Holy Spirit. I have looked at your material and your writings as well. I don’t think you believe William Branham was the manifestation of deity during his life. But you speak about William Branham as the fulfillment of Scripture and prophecy. You have stated unequivocally that William Branham WAS a prophet of God.

There are disagreements in message circles and denominations within the message about the level of deity which should be ascribed to Branham. But in every case without exception, William Branham is assumed to be a prophet of God.

Let us for a moment take on the role of the Bereans. Our advantage over the Bereans is we have the ability to look back at the words and teachings of William Branham. William Branham was gracious enough to have over 1100 sermons recorded and transcribed. This is a MASSIVE body of work against which to evaluate what Branham said and taught at any point in history, and we are fortunate to have this massive amount of data to examine.

Prior to examining doctrines, teachings, and positions which have been taught by William Branham, it is important to establish his position as a prophet of God.

Since we know that every message sect and denomination proclaim unequivocally that William Branham was a prophet of God, let us start there. Scripture has a very clear definition and understanding of the qualifications of a prophet of God. William Branham himself told us over 400 times in over 1100 sermons that he was a prophet of God.

As you support this position, you also proclaim that William Branham is a prophet of God, will you please show me against which Scriptural criteria you support this assertion?

I truly appreciate your time and your patience with me over the past couple of months. And I look forward to reading your response which outlines and defines your Scripturally supported examination of someone who proclaims that they are a prophet of God as William Branham did over 400 times.  

Email #2 - Sent May 16, 2020

Jason,

It has been a number of days since I sent an email to you at your invitation regarding William Branham and Scripture. In the first email, I asked you what your Scriptural definition of a prophet of God is, and to help me understand how Branham qualified as a prophet of God using that criteria.

I am entirely empathetic with how busy you must be during this time with so many of those in your assembly potentially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. But since I didn’t hear anything from you, I wanted to take an opportunity to further our discussion.

Realizing that Scripture has a specific definition of the attributes of a prophet of God, I thought it might be important to review them.

Deuteronomy 13:1-5

1 “If a prophet or someone who has dreams arises among you and proclaims a sign or wonder to you,
2 and that sign or wonder he has promised you comes about, but he says, ‘Let us follow other gods,’ which you have not known, ‘and let us worship them,’
3 do not listen to that prophet’s words or to that dreamer. For the LORD your God is testing you to know whether you love the LORD your God with all your heart and all your soul.
4 You must follow the LORD your God and fear Him. You must keep His commands and listen to His voice; you must worship Him and remain faithful to Him.
5 That prophet or dreamer must be put to death, because he has urged rebellion against the LORD your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt and redeemed you from the place of slavery, to turn you from the way the LORD your God has commanded you to walk. You must purge the evil from you.

In this verse, we see that someone who proclaims that they are a prophet of God may have dreams, and perform signs and wonders which come to pass. Scripture is clear, however, concerning what the person who proclaims themselves as a prophet of God, and whether what they say actually aligns with God’s Word. In this case, the verse is specific about the self-proclaimed prophet telling God’s people to following other gods and worshiping them. Following other gods is construed to mean by explicitly naming another god, or teaching that which does not align with the very Word of the One True God and thereby teaching something which would lead God’s people astray. And so, we see here again that we are to examine what someone who claims to be a prophet of God says against Scripture, just as the Bereans did in the book of Acts as was previously discussed.

Deuteronomy 18:20 – 22

20 But the prophet who dares to speak a message in My name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods—that prophet must die.’
21 You may say to yourself, ‘How can we recognize a message the LORD has not spoken?’
22 When a prophet speaks in the LORD’s name, and the message does not come true or is not fulfilled, that is a message the :LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.

In this verse, we see the behavior that we are to exhibit after we examine what is told to us by someone claiming to be a prophet of God when what we are told does not align with the Word of God. More explicitly here, we are told how we are to behave when someone claims to be a prophet of God, and what that person tells us using the authority of God does not come to pass. In the terminology of this Scripture, that person who claims to be a prophet but what they speak using God’s authority does not come to pass, has spoken “presumptuously”, and we are to ignore that person.

How do we know that these commands have been carried out throughout Scriptural history? We can look at many examples concerning God’s true prophets such as this example concerning Samuel:

1 Samuel 3:19-20

19 And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and did let none of his words fall to the ground.
20 And all Israel from Dan even to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of the LORD.

In this example, we can confirm that the ALL OF ISRAEL knew with certainty that Samuel was a vindicated prophet of God because God let NONE of his words fall to the ground. God did not allow ANY of what Samuel said contradict the very Word of God.

How can we know that? What we can know is that if ANY of what Samuel spoke using God’s authority was contrary to the Word of God, then as Moses had instructed in the Book of Deuteronomy, the Nation of Israel would have ignored Samuel. But we see that NONE of what Samuel spoke with God’s authority was contrary to the very Word of God. And so, Samuel was vindicated as a prophet of God as Scripture tells us.

This examination of a prophet of God is consistent throughout Scripture, including New Testament Scripture. In my last email, I pointed out where John the Evangelist, the Apostle Paul, and even Jesus Christ Himself reminds us of what Moses instructed. We also saw that the Bereans heeded the instruction of Moses to examine what they heard against God’s Word. What better example for us to follow as we hear from people who proclaim to be a prophet of God.

Now, William Branham proclaimed himself a prophet of God over 400 times in his over 1100 sermons. But he also went further. He told us that he was the Prophet Messenger for the seventh, or Laodicean “church age”. And in his written work, William Branham told us that none of what he spoke was to be questioned. Branham went so far as to declare that he was INFALLIBLE:

“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.”[2]

But let us take a step back from infallibility for the moment. Let us look first, as the Bereans did, and as Moses, John, Paul, and Jesus Christ instructed us to do, at what was said using God’s authority to see if we can gain some insight into whether William Branham can actually qualify as a true prophet of God.

We can define what we mean when we say “using God’s Authority” first. There are many within the various message denominations who would agree with Branham’s own writing in An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages book, commonly referred to as CAB. Those who would take this position are those who would claim that Branham was deity manifest on earth, and that Branham was Christ as Lee Vayle tells us. These people are extreme as it relates to Branham’s Scriptural authority. There are also people that claim that while Branham was a good starting point for the modern day but that he didn’t go far enough, and was not ordained to complete the message of the return of Christ. This denomination of the message, referred to as the SEVEN THUNDERS denominations, believe that their various individual ministers are actually the EIGHTH and CAPSTONE or final “church age” prophet messenger, taking them even further than Lee Vayle to the extreme. Reviewing your writing and teaching which is readily available on the internet through sources such as your church’s web site, I acknowledge that you do not take the position that Branham was a deity, and that he was subject to human errors and mistakes. So, for the moment we discount Branham’s statements concerning his infallibility. But this on its own leads to issues concerning someone who claims to speak with God’s authority when what they say does not align with the Word of God. This would on its face disqualify Branham as a true prophet of God. But we will move past that issue for the moment. For the purpose of this exercise, we will focus our attention on what Branham says using God’s authority as Branham defined it when he says “THAT’S THUS SAITH THE LORD”.

In the Book of Deuteronomy, Chapter 13 as referenced above, we see that some will perform signs and wonders and will dream dreams and have visions. These acts on their own do not vindicate a prophet of God as we have seen in the same chapter and verse that false prophets will do these things. We are clear in our first email that in the New Testament, John the Evangelist and even Jesus Christ discuss that people will proclaim themselves as prophets, and will perform signs and wonders, but their teaching will not align with God’s Word. This is consistent with what is taught by Moses in the Old Testament.

The question that we ask then is this: “Are there instances within the vast body of more than 1100 sermons and his books where what Branham stated using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” did not come to pass?” Secondarily, one could ask if there are instances within Branham’s sermons where he intentionally misled his listeners or readers of the transcripts of the sermons using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” and his assertion of God’s authority as the basis for his statement? Based on the Scriptural definition of vindication as has been thoroughly described, we view what Branham said using this proclamation of the authority of God and compare these statements to the very Word of God. We can also examine when Branham spoke a vision or a dream using this statement of God’s authority if the dreams or visions actually came to pass.

Let us examine some examples from sermons presented by William Branham under his “THUS SAITH THE LORD” self-proclaimed authority that call into question the truth of his qualifications as a prophet of God.

From 1952 through 1965, William Branham told of his vision and proclaimed as a prophecy given to him by God that he was going to South Africa to hold a tent meeting. Here are just some of those 30 instances in his sermons concerning this “prophetic” vision or dream, many of these instances using his self-proclaimed “THUS SAITH THE LORD”:

“Then just then, He taken me out in the Spirit. Listen, Brother Jackson, you never heard this, none of the rest have. And He set me down at Durban, South Africa, in that same booth, standing there before those tens of thousands, and thousands of people there. And I looked and I seen all that meeting gather together, and fade off to my right. Geographically, I was standing this way. And it faded to the left going this way, turning blue. And then right before me, stood blocked off streets like that, with people standing there, with their hands up praising God. Then He turned me to the east, and looked that way. And I seen people standing there with clouts, like on, like the Indians wear. And there were thousands of them, and they had their hands up air, just a praising God and screaming and praising God. And I couldn't even see the end of them. And just about that time, come a great Angel from heaven, and stood be--over the top of me here, with a big Light. And that Light like on the end of one of these here operating lights on the front of a--of a big locomotive, and begin to throw. And the hillsides were sitting black and standing with people for a mile away nearly. And I said, "Oh, are they all black people?" Then He turned my face here in front of me, to Durban again, and there was beautiful white men and women, standing with their hands up in the air, praising God. Then He turned me back again, and the great Light started going way back over the hills and showing. Then the Angel drew near. And I heard Him scream with a Voice, that shook me from the vision. Said, "There'll be three hundred thousand of them in that meeting. THUS SAITH THE LORD mark it in your book." I come out of it. I said, "My Lord and my God. Thanks be to You. I appreciate the stripes and the whipping that You give me for disobeying You. But from this on, Lord, knowingly, if I ever know again, I will never tie myself up with a bunch of nobody else preachers, managers, or no one else, but what I will be free to do what You say do. And I will go just where You say go, and do just what You say do the rest of my life. And I will always try to do just as You say do." And about that time, here He come again. And I seen my Bible rise off the table, and come over to me like this. It was turned over to the place where Paul, in the storm, said, "You should have listened to Me, and not have loosed from Crete, but nevertheless, the Angel of the Lord Who stood by me, and so forth..." ...And I said, "Sister Broy, the Angel of the Lord has appeared to me and told me, 'Forget about the ameba. It's going to be all right. And I'm going to have a meeting that's going to consist of three hundred thousand people.' And God," I said, "my ministry is just now beginning." I said, "I want to base it; I want to tear that thing out from where it was, and get rid of all these here leeches, and things a hanging on, so I can get to the people and tell them what's the truth." And that's right. I said, "I'm tired of this and the man-made stuff anyhow. And I'm going to be where God can use me. I'm going to live right in that channel, as long as I live."”[3]
“Then He set Me down at Durban, South Africa, where we had a hundred thousand people in the meeting, the last meeting. Had thirty thousand converts in one day, when they seen what the Lord had did, how He done the great and mighty works. And there, then I was setting back there again; He showed me another crowd just like it showed that crowd passing away.
Then He turned me this way, and an Angel came down with a light, flash it on. I just seen oceans of people, and they were Indians wrapped in Indian garb. He told me, said... And I seen the Angel come real near. And I said, "Who are these people?" And He, the other Angel who was standing by me, the One that you see back there in the picture, well, He--He come near me; He said, "There's three hundred thousand of those in that meeting." Now, you mark it in your Bible, and watch what the report is. When I return from India, there'll be three hundred thousand people attend the meeting there at one time. I look for a hundred thousand conversions at one time. See? It's the only thing that'll stem the tide of Communism now, when forty percent of India has already turned Communist.”[4]
“And here's what will take place: The Angel of the Lord which come to me and told me to return to Africa... And He set me down in Africa and showed me a greater meeting than was there at the first time. Then while I was standing there, while another Angel come down from the heavens. He looked like some sort of a red like garment. But He was above me, and He--He turned me to the east. And I seen all the African people here. The African people are sturdy, heavy built, but these were thin-like people, looked like they had a--like a--a blanket around them, and it had been pulled up and stuffed down like this. And I couldn't recognize any. But oh, there were so many more than they was of these African people.
And this Angel, above me, turned on a great big operating light, and begin to show back, like that. And just as far as I could see, was nothing but people. And it was up over hills and valleys. And they looked like Indians. And then when this Angel above me spoke to the Angel that's always with me, up side the big fellow, kind of dark complected, hair down to His shoulders, folded His arms, He was standing here by my side. I heard Him tell this One standing by me, and the Voice was so strong that it broke me out of the vision, said, "There's three hundred thousand of those in that meeting." Mark that down, for it's THUS SAITH THE LORD. His Word comes to pass. When the archbishop of India came to my place, recently, and received the Baptism of the Holy Ghost, Archbishop Palai, he said, "Brother Branham, the way they're looking for you there, so that meant converts." Said, "I'll assure you, there'll be anywhere from a half to a million people in your congregation." He said, "All India's awaiting." And with this vision to back it up, watch what our Lord will do. See? I'm expecting a half a million converts in my journey. We go to Africa, to India, to Palestine, to Luxembourg, and Frankfurt, back to London, and then back home; and then down in South--Australia, New Zealand, and down in there. Now, perhaps, maybe I'll get to see you after I come back from overseas.” [5]
“"What are you going to teach us, how to drink whiskey? That's what you all do over there in your churches: smoke cigarettes? Going to teach us how to divorce our wives and so forth?" Said, "If you're going to do that, we don't want it." And said, "You're coming over here with some new theology or something another; you're going to try to teach us some of the Word; we know more about it than you do." And that's right. He said, "But if you're coming to demonstrate what the Word says, we'll receive it." Amen. There you are. That's the thing they're hungering for. Mark my word; write it in the pages of your Bible, for it's THUS SAITH THE LORD, "Remember, when we land in India, you're going to hear of tens of thousands times thousands being saved." The Holy Spirit has said it; I've wrote it here in my Bible; it's wrote in tens of thousands of Bibles right here, like the resurrection of the little boy. By a vision that He said, "There's three hundred thousand of them in there." And you see if that isn't right. There's how the Gospel's going to be preached just overnight. She'll just sweep like that from place to place.” QUESTIONS.AND.ANSWERS JEFF.IN 54-0515
“Here sometime ago a vision came and told me about going to Africa. And I thought that it meant go to Africa first, then to India. And the Lord spoke to me and told me to go to Africa first, and then to India. Well I thought that compared with the vision. And then I forgot about it and went to India first and then He condemned me at Portuguese, as you know the story. And said, "I thought I said to you 'Go to Africa first.'" And then I was condemned. And I thought all the time, and now it just comes up, the revelation begins to push me for Africa, and I read in the vision, and the vision really said, "Go to India first and back to Africa." It's just exactly the way it's going to happen.
Now, see, the Lord spoke to me, knowing that I would fail, but the vision can't fail. It's what God has already said and it cannot fail. The vision, I've got it wrote in an flyleaf of my Bible. I will bring it down maybe and let you see it. How that it really reads that I will go to India first and then back to Africa; but He told me to go to Africa first and then to India, knowing that I would fail, but the vision can never fail. God has spoke it. It's got to be that way. ...Look, even that vision, I wrote the vision out myself, and read it over a thousand times or more. I didn't see that I was supposed to go to India first. I thought I was supposed to go to Africa first. But then when this hour comes, here it is written right out in my own hand. See? I just couldn't see it. It was blinded to me till I went ahead and disobeyed God, that He might correct me and show that His Words are eternal and can't fail. See? I just couldn't read it that way.”[6]

Notice in this last example of the 30 instances where this vision is mentioned, Branham himself speaks about the order in which the travel is to take place.

But then we see where William Branham himself speaks about the vision which did not come to pass:

“I had planned on, so hard, coming back; burdened in the heart. I just returned from Africa, as you all know. And when I got over there, I had a restricted visa, and wouldn't let me, wouldn't let me preach because it gathers too many together. They're expecting an uprise there at any time, and--and they--they wouldn't let me preach because of that gathering too many people together. The only way I could, would to have some organization that's represented by the government, in the government, to invite me over, then that would automatically let the government send out a militia for protection. See, they're just... There is just going to be an uprise, and that's all there is to it. It's just right in hand, see. That government man said, "The last time he was here, he had about a quarter of a million people together." And he said, "Then, you see, that would just be the very thing that communism is looking for, for an uprise." So, I couldn't preach.
And so I, when I started to go over, I'm telling you, I never had so much trouble in all my life, of trying to get there. And then at the very last minute, very last minute to go, here was wrote across my visa, "Cannot anticipate in any kind of religious service; can only come hunting." Well, then, it was rank. But I said, "I don't care what the Devil does, I--I can't... I can't voucher for what Brother Jackson said about yellow-mane lion, and this, that, or the other. I--I can't vouch it. But I do know God told me to 'see Sidney Jackson, and go hunting.' "And I said, "I'm going." And sometime... And I had one of the greatest trips. I found out what the trouble was. Now I think, about October, the Lord willing, I can go back and have a meeting and everything, full cooperation, everything else, see, in Africa now. I got to the bottom of it and found out where it was at, what caused it. Up here, writing, this one has got this to say, and something's got something to say, and this one there. The best thing to do, is go find out, yourself. And I know where the trouble was, and what the reason of it was; it was because of so many people gathering together, the government wouldn't let me have it.”[7]

We see that Branham proclaims using his self-proclaimed God-given authority, “THUS SAITH THE LORD”, to describe in detail what will happen. But we then see where Branham tells us that this vision, this dream, did not come to pass as he proclaimed it to his audiences.

What is instructive here is why Branham says that the meeting could not take place. Let’s examine this part of the sermon:

“I had planned on, so hard, coming back; burdened in the heart. I just returned from Africa, as you all know. And when I got over there, I had a restricted visa, and wouldn't let me, wouldn't let me preach because it gathers too many together. They're expecting an uprise there at any time, and--and they--they wouldn't let me preach because of that gathering too many people together. The only way I could, would to have some organization that's represented by the government, in the government, to invite me over, then that would automatically let the government send out a militia for protection. See, they're just... There is just going to be an uprise, and that's all there is to it. It's just right in hand, see. That government man said, "The last time he was here, he had about a quarter of a million people together." And he said, "Then, you see, that would just be the very thing that communism is looking for, for an uprise." So, I couldn't preach.”[8]

What Branham explains is that the Government of South Africa would not allow him to preach, and issued a “restricted” visa for entry. But looking at Scripture, it is interesting to discuss this.

Here are examples of Scripture where we learn that God is Sovereign over Nations:

Romans 13:1-7

1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:
4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.
7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.[9]

Proverbs 21:1

1 The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.

Isaiah 6:9-11

9 Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me,
10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:
11 Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.

Jesus Christ Himself tells us this:

John 29:10-11

10 Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?
11 Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.

There are plenty of Scriptures that tell us that what God would have his prophet deliver or execute will not be supplanted by man. We can use the entire Book of Jonah as a demonstration of this principle. In the Book of Jonah, God sends Jonah, His true prophet, to present his proclamation concerning the destruction of Nineveh. Now, Jonah did everything within his power to avoid travelling to Nineveh out of fear for the repercussions that he feared would come from the king and his people toward Jonah. But we discover that when God has a message for people, our personal actions will not deter His message from being delivered. We see in the Book of Jonah that God appointed this task for Jonah, and Jonah ultimately was in a position to execute on the vision he had from God to go to Nineveh and deliver God’s message.

Similarly, we see in Scripture that even if God’s true prophet had desired to go but an earthly king or realm would have attempted to prohibit Jonah’s way, God, who has the heart of kings in His hands and Who as Jesus points out is the Absolute Authority gives the power that He Will to nations and rulers. We can use Nehemiah as an example of this. As a result of the prayers of Nehemiah, God was instrumental in the king issuing his servant Nehemiah letters permitting him the use of the forests and other resources for the rebuilding of the city even though the king did not share Nehemiah’s faith.

However, in the example shown here concerning Branham’s trip to South Africa, Branham confirms that his vision about his visit to South Africa was a vision from God, and he spoke this vision using his authority as a prophet (“THUS SAITH THE LORD”). We see Branham tell us he could not fulfill this “THUS SAITH THE LORD” vision because a nation would not issue a visa. This is contrary to what we know about the Will and the Power of God Almighty.

Not only did the vision or dream NOT come to pass, but Branham tells us that God’s Power over whether commissions to His prophets are executed is limited by a bureaucracy here on earth.

This is but one single example of many where what Branham spoke using “THUS SAITH THE LORD” failed to come to pass. We can name several others to look at as well such as the Brown Bear vision, the Municipal Bridge vision, and the vision which he spoke of in 1963 concerning the prophet messenger of the Laodicean “church age” being on earth when Christ returns:

“Now, you see, I'm just not making that up. That's what... It's THUS SAITH THE LORD. I'll read it to you out of the Book: the sounding of the seventh angel's message, the mystery of God should be finished that's been declared by His holy prophets. That's the prophets who has wrote the Word. At the sounding of the seventh church age, the last church age, all the loose ends that through these church ages have been probed at, will be wound up together. And when the Seals are broke and the mystery is revealed, down comes the Angel, the Messenger, Christ, setting His foot upon the land and upon the sea with a rainbow over His head. Now remember, this seventh angel is on earth at the time of this coming.” THE.BREACH.BETWEEN.THE.SEVEN.CHURCH.AGES.AND.THE.SEVEN.SEALS_ JEFF.IN 63-0317E

Interestingly, since Branham proclaimed himself as this prophet messenger, this would require his resurrection for this vision to occur. There is no Scriptural precedence for a prophet to be resurrected. What are we to take from this example?

It is impossible to find a single instance where William Branham spoke about a prophecy, vision, or dream using what he proclaimed as his Scriptural authority (“THUS SAITH THE LORD”) in advance of the event which actually came to pass. And there are many that Branham spoke after the event was to have happened, such as the prophecies about the second world war, Mussolini, Hitler and Germany, and the Municipal Bridge which were utterly incorrect in their factual basis from the telling to what Branham claims are the fulfillments of these visions.

In the instance of the Municipal Bridge vision, the bridge which Branham pointed out to Pearry Green which is often used to confirm this vision did not collapse during its construction, and there is absolutely no indication that 16 men died during its construction let alone were drown in the same incident. But what makes this even more interesting is the time line which Branham introduces in the telling of this vision. Branham tells us in the 14 instances where he recounts this vision that he received the vision 22 years prior to the bridge being completed:

“I was playing marbles out with my little brothers, out in the front yard. And all at once I had a strange feeling come on me. And I stopped and set down aside of a tree. And we were right up on the bank from the Ohio River. And I looked down towards Jeffersonville, and I seen a bridge rise up and go across that, the river, span the river. And I seen sixteen men (I counted them) that dropped off of there and lost their lives on that bridge. I run in real quick and told my mother, and she thought I went to sleep. But they kept it in mind, and twenty-two years from then the Municipal Bridge now (that many of you cross when you cross there) crossed the river at the same place, and sixteen men lost their life building that bridge across the river. It's never failed to be perfectly true.” My Life Story, Los Angeles, April 19, 1959
“Here at the municipal bridge. Sister, no doubt you know where the municipal bridge is, don't you, cross from Jeffersonville to Louisville?
Twenty-two years, when I was a little boy, just a little bitty lad about five years old, or six years old, when the Angel of the Lord appeared in the bush... You've heard me tell that haven't you, when I was packing water?
Well, about two weeks after that, I was playing marbles with my little brother. And I thought I'd got sick, some real funny feeling came on me. And I went and set down by the side of a tree. And I looked down at the river, and there went a bridge, a big, great big bridge going across the river. And I counted sixteen men that fell off of that bridge and drowned. And I went and told mother. And I told her I seen it. And they thought I was crazy or something. They thought I was just at a little nervous hysterical child.
And twenty-two years from that time, on the same ground went the municipal bridge across, and sixteen men lost their lives on it. See? Wasn't nothing that... It's--it's God sent it. Your prayers brought it. See?” EXPERIENCES PHOENIX.AZ 48-0302

The bridge was completed on October 31, 1929. Branham tells us in his vision several times that he was five or six years old, that he was playing marbles with his younger brother in the yard, and that he ran into the house to tell his mother. Now, depending on the birthdate which you hold as credible for Branham’s birth that he gave on several different legal records and documents or that he states in his sermons, Branham was born in 1909 (or 1907, or 1908, but let’s stick with Branham’s recording of a sermon from the pulpit):

“She said, "I'm an astrologist." ...Said, "Perhaps, I will tell you just exactly when you was born, would you believe me?" And I said, "You can't do it in the first place." See? She said, "Oh, yes, I can." I said, "Let's hear you." Said, "You was born on April the 6th at five o'clock in the morning in 1909.”” William Branham, 52-0713A - Early Spiritual Experiences, para. 21-22

When we do the math, we see that Branham would not yet have been born 22 years prior to the bridge being completed.

Secondarily, we have examples where what Branham said was not true, but he spoke using “THUS SAITH THE LORD”. Here is one example:

“Now, look friends, think of King George of England, when he was healed with multiple sclerosis, when we had prayer for him. Think of Florence Nightingale, her grandmother, the founder of the Red Cross, was about sixty pounds of weight, laid dying yonder with a cancer on the duodenal of the stomach, laying there dying. A little dove flew into the bush there and the Spirit of God come and said, "THUS SAITH THE LORD, she shall live." And she weighs a hundred and fifty-five pounds in perfect health.” September 2, 1953, Sermon: Testimony

Branham spoke of this instance where he healed Florence Nightingale five times over the course of his ministry. There are some issues however.

Florence Nightingale was not the founder of the Red Cross. She was a nurse who served during the Crimean War for the British forces, but Clara Barton founded the Red Cross. We can brush that aside and consider that a mis-statement by Branham without speaking about his Scriptural authority of “THUS SAITH THE LORD”. What we CAN say, however, is Florence Nightingale never married. She did not have children. So, this naturally begs the question… “Where did her ‘GRAND DAUGHTER’ come from?” We also know that King George VI of England never suffered from Multiple Sclerosis. He died of ARTERIAL SCLEROSIS. Now, Branham claimed that he could discern medical issues. How did he get that wrong?

In these two examples of what Branham told us, what he claimed as a vision, as a dream, did not come to pass even though Branham proclaimed these “prophecies” as given to him by God and spoken under God’s authority “THUS SAITH THE LORD”. In both cases, the prophecy did not come to pass, or was untruthful.

Let us review once again what we are instructed by Scripture in the Book of Deuteronomy:

Deuteronomy 18:20 – 22

20 But the prophet who dares to speak a message in My name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods—that prophet must die.’
21 You may say to yourself, ‘How can we recognize a message the LORD has not spoken?’
22 When a prophet speaks in the LORD’s name, and the message does not come true or is not fulfilled, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.

If we apply this Scriptural examination of a prophet of God, we see that Branham does not qualify as a prophet of God, and according to Scripture is actually a false prophet. Scripture is very harsh about our behavior when the prophet proclaims a message in the Name of God (“THUS SAITH THE LORD”) which the Lord did not command him to speak. And there is a ZERO TOLERANCE policy concerning someone who speaks as a false prophet as defined here.

At the very minimum, certainly Branham spoke presumptuously. And so, as we are exhorted by Scripture, should we not ignore him?  

Email #3 - Sent May 24, 2020

Jason,

I appreciate the opportunity you provided to me when you invited me to reach out to you and discuss William Branham. I had hoped that the discussion would be somewhat interactive, but I can certainly appreciate how busy you must be.

In my first two emails, I focused on William Branham’s qualifications as a prophet of God, or rather his lack of qualifications. We reviewed the example of the Bereans to search the Word of God when we hear someone proclaim themselves as a prophet of God as Branham did over 400 times in over 1100 sermons. We reviewed that Moses tells the Nation of Israel how a prophet should be evaluated, and we have looked forward to the Words of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, and other disciples concerning our obligation to examine what we hear to make sure what we hear is actually from God.

Your assertion which prompted me to reach out to you, however, was that no one could demonstrate where William Branham taught anything that did not align with Scripture. It is that topic that I thought we should address.

It should be noted here that I view Branham’s teaching as the teaching of not a minister of God, but of a prophet of God. If Branham had proclaimed himself as a minister of God, we would not be having this discussion. But Branham told us that his ministry was ordained to forerun the second coming of Christ as a prophet of God… so we must evaluate his teaching as such:

“The trouble of it is, you Pentecostal people, you Baptists, you Methodists, you've failed to recognize your God-given privilege. Hear me. THUS SAITH THE LORD, you believe it with all your heart. He promised it in the last day. Hasn't been for two thousand years, because the Bible said it wouldn't be. But Jesus said... As it was in the days of Sodom, when that Angel come, turned His back to the tent, and asked for Sarah, and told what she said in the building... How many knows that? Jesus said, "As it was in the days of Sodom, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of man." When? Just before Sodom burned. That's just before this world's going to burn. The whole unbelieving world will be--go into chaos and burn with fervent heat. We know that. And just before that time... Remember, THUS SAITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, this is your last sign. Write it in your Bible. And if something rises besides this, and greater than this, call me a false prophet.” 61-0414 - Be Not Afraid, it is I
“You'll never receive another sign. This is It. THUS SAITH THE LORD. Would a prophet of God make a statement like that if it wasn't true? You're receiving your greatest sign, and your last sign, before the appearing of Christ. Come! The reason I'm saying these things, I've never said this in any other meeting, I feel that right here is opportunity here for something to happen. That's why I'm saying the way I am. I believe you understand. You wouldn't go around, make some kind of a cult, say, "Brother Branham is a god," or something like that. You understand what I'm talking about.” 62-0707 - Jehovah-Jireh #3

William Branham also told us that his interpretation of the Bible was correct:

“Now, let us all pray. Lord, with our heads bowed, just now, it's got to be known that Your Scripture's the truth, and I've told the truth of It, or either, I am wrong and a false prophet, or Your Scripture has misled us. Now, Lord, we know that that's not so. We know that Your Scriptures are Truth.” LED.BY.THE.SPIRIT_ LA.CA TUESDAY_ 59-0407

We also can recall that William Branham told us that he was infallible as the prophet messenger:

“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.” An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age

Since Branham proclaimed himself as a prophet, and as THE PROPHET MESSENGER prior to the return of Jesus Christ, it is important to evaluate him as what he himself claimed. And to drive this point home, Branham spoke about diminishing his ministry so Christ’s return could be exalted:

“That’s when Peter made those notable words, and said, “Lord, where would we go?” Certainly. Then He begin from that very hour… Long as He was healing the sick, it was fine. But when He went to interfering with their individual life, then that said something different. From right there His ministry begin to diminish, right on to the cross. And every true servant of God will follow the same example. Certainly, the people wants patted and played with. But when it comes to truth, they don’t want it. Now, remember, these are tapes going around the world. All right.” 62-0714 - The Uncertain Sound

Let’s start with specific Scriptures which William Branham preached in opposition to Scripture. As our first example, let’s look at what Branham said concerning Enoch and Noah. William Branham tells us this concerning how Saul was chosen:

"So they searched out through the country. And down in the tribe of Benjamin they found a man by the name of Kish, who had a son named Saul. And they chose him." 60-0610 THE.REJECTED.KING_ CHAUTAUQUA.OH FRIDAY_

In this sermon, and others where he claimed the same thing, Branham tells us that the people of the Nation of Israel “searched”, “found”, and “chose” Saul. But what does the Bible tell us?

1 Samuel 9:15-17 (HCSB)

15 Now the day before Saul’s arrival, the LORD had informed Samuel,
16 “At this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him ruler over My people Israel. He will save them from the hand of the Philistines because I have seen the affliction of My people, for their cry has come to Me.”
17 When Samuel saw Saul, the LORD told him, “Here is the man I told you about; he will rule over My people.”

So, Scripture tells us that the Lord informed Samuel that Saul would rule his people instead of the people making a decision about Saul. Remember, William Branham proclaimed over 400 times that he was a prophet, he claimed that as a prophet everything he taught aligned with Scripture, and he proclaimed that he was infallible. Which is correct? Was Scripture correct, or was Branham correct.

There are those within the several denominations in the message which tell us that Branham “CORRECTED” Scripture. Still others tell us that Branham may have been incorrect, but God would correct Branham and he would later preach the correct teaching under God’s anointing. But as we search Scripture, we see NO EXAMPLES of where a prophet “CORRECTED” the Word of God, nor do we discover a prophet who teaches something and then teaches the opposite. Can you imagine the confusion which would ensue among God’s People if someone who was a true prophet taught that which opposed God’s Word?

And as the Bereans would have done, we search Scripture for guidance:

1 Corinthians 14:33 (KJV)

33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

Here we see the Apostle Paul speak about prophets that when they speak with God’s Authority, do not sow confusion.

Let’s look at another example where what Branham taught directly contradicts Scripture:

"And when the... John wept. Now, someone, as I said last week, they said, "John wept because that he could find nobody worthy." It wasn't that. A man under the influence of the Holy Ghost wouldn't weep for that. Thought that, "'Cause he wasn't worthy," maybe John himself wasn't worthy. There's nobody worthy. But he didn't weep because of that. I believe he was weeping for joy because that he had seen the whole plan of redemption was wrote in this Book here. It wasn't because there wasn't nobody worthy, because there stood a Lamb right there was worthy. So he was weeping there, he said, "Oh, Glory to God." Listen at him directly when he goes to shouting. Now, but we find him here weeping because that he was so happy because that the Lamb had taken the Book for the--out of the hand of Him that set upon the throne." REV.CHAP.5.PART.2 JEFF.IN ROJC 747-793 61-0618

What does Scripture tell us?

Revelation 5:4 (HCSB)

4 And I cried and cried because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or even to look in it.

Did Branham correct the Word of God? Or was the Word of God correct and Branham mistaken?

What did Branham tell us about Enoch?

“And notice, back there in that evil day just before the destruction, when God had a man out preaching the Gospel, a poor man, humble man, not very much of the world, but a man who had a heart to listen to God: Noah. There was Noah and Enoch preaching at the same time.” JUNCTION.OF.TIME JEFF.IN 56-0115
“And when they... When Noah saw Enoch was missing, he thought, "What become of Enoch? What become of Enoch? Where is he at?" Which, was grandson, Noah was grandson to Enoch. And he said, "Where is it at? What become of him? We can't find him no more." Noah started building on that ark. He knowed that the time was at hand, right there.” UNCERTAIN.SOUND JEFF.IN 60-1218
“Just like Noah kept watching Enoch. When Enoch went, Noah said, "Better get close to the ark. The time is at hand." Noah kept watching Enoch (See?)” THIRD.SEAL.THE JEFF.IN 63-0320

Was Noah alive when Enoch was translated? According to Scripture, Enoch was Translated 987 years after the appearance of Adam (Genesis 5:15, 23). Noah was born 1,056 years after the appearance of Adam (Gen 5:9, 9:29). The flood started when Noah was 600 years old, or 1,656 years after the appearance of Adam. Noah was born 69 years after Enoch was Translated. God told Noah to build the ark 569 years after Enoch was Translated. How was it that Noah could watch Enoch to determine his sign to build the ark for the flood which happened 669 years after Enoch’s Translation? Branham clearly tells us Noah and Enoch were preaching at the same time. Which is correct? Was Scripture correct, or was Branham correct?

These things might be explained by saying that William Branham was simply a human being, and that he didn’t really say these things as a prophet of God… I would beg to differ. I think Branham spoke repeatedly and forcefully about his infallibility and his position as a prophet of God in everything that he said. But there is an argument that might be made to justify these failings.

But, how about this example… Branham tells us about something which is rather objectionable:

"God's wrote three Bibles: one, the Zodiac, one in the pyramids, one on paper. Now, He's writing His first, the Zodiac. It starts off with a virgin, ends up with Leo the lion: Jesus' first coming and His second coming. If we had time to run down through it, you'd see it." 53-0509, The Pillar Of Fire

We make the distinction here between the ASTROLOGY/ZODIAC, the divination of future events using star signs, from ASTRONOMY, the study of the movement of the stars. We recognize that God orders the stars and commands their movement in the sky:

Psalm 147:3-5 (KJV)

3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.
4 He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names.
5 Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite.

Isaiah 40:26 (KJV)

26 Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth.

Job 9:7-10 (KJV)

7 Which commandeth the sun, and it riseth not; and sealeth up the stars.
8 Which alone spreadeth out the heavens, and treadeth upon the waves of the sea.
9 Which maketh Arcturus, Orion, and Pleiades, and the chambers of the south.
10 Which doeth great things past finding out; yea, and wonders without number.

The Bible is quite clear about the ZODIAC/ASTROLOGY:

Isaiah 47:12-14 (HCSB)

12 So take your stand with your spells and your many sorceries, which you have wearied yourself with from your youth. Perhaps you will be able to succeed; perhaps you will inspire terror!
13 You are worn out with your many consultations. So let them stand and save you— the astrologers, who observe the stars, who predict monthly what will happen to you.
14 Look, they are like stubble; fire burns them up. They cannot deliver themselves from the power of the flame. This is not a coal for warming themselves, or a fire to sit beside!

Now, Branham promotes something which Scripture directly admonishes against, not once but five times. Let’s review Moses’ directions concerning someone who teaches another God:

Deuteronomy 13:1-5 (KJV)

1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,
2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;
3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.
5 And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.

ASTROLOGY, the ZODIAC, is absolutely contrary to God’s Word and in fact teaches dependence on another god. And Branham spoke about the “three bibles” including the ZODIAC five times during his ministry.

I have included only some of the examples where what William Branham taught directly opposed Scripture. There are those in the message denominations who have said that Branham corrected the Bible, others who say that nothing Branham said is to be taken as reliable until after the revelation of what is known as the Seven Seals, and others who claim that Branham made mistakes and what he taught should not be criticized unless it was taught using his self-proclaimed “THUS SAITH THE LORD”. But how does this square with Branham’s own declarations concerning infallibility?

To those that say Branham “CORRECTED” God’s Word, I would point them back to the Bereans, back to the Apostle Paul, and to John the Evangelist who instructed us to examine what we hear from a prophet against God’s Word. If Branham corrected God’s Word, then Scripture itself is of no effect.

Now, to those who would say that Branham is not reliable until after he revealed his Exposition of the Seven Seals, I would remind them that Branham claimed that he was God’s prophet messenger WELL BEFORE his exposition of the seals. So, was Branham lying when he proclaimed himself a prophet prior to the Expositions of the Seven Seals?

And finally, to those who would promote the idea that Branham simply made “mistakes” while preaching these things, I would point them back to the instructions in the 18th Chapter of the Book of Deuteronomy:

Deuteronomy 18:20-22 (KJV)

20 But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.
21 And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken?
22 When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.

Concluding that what Branham taught never opposed the Word of God is clearly incorrect. And if as many message ministers have publicly stated Branham is to be believed even if the Bible is in opposition to Branham’s teaching, then the entire Bible is of no effect. Even Branham’s son Joseph told us this just over a year ago:

“We can just sit back and relax, and just enjoy what we’re hearing. It doesn’t matter, we don’t have to have our guard up, you don’t have to do nothing, except for saying ‘Amen! – Amen!’. He says ‘the bride says “Amen’ to every word”’. What did that angel of the Lord say?—‘Get the people to believe YOU!’ So when they’re trying to make you doubt, ‘…well, the prophet didn’t say this, he didn’t say this—he made a mistake here, he made a mistake here…’ I don’t care if it’s a bare-faced lie, if the world can prove it--I believe it! The angel said, ‘get the people to believe what YOU SAID.” Amen! We believe it!” (Joseph Branham introducing a message in the Branham Tabernacle on March 24, 2019 at the 14:59 mark in the recording)

As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord… we will harken to His Word… and we will not put God’s Word aside in favor of the sermons and teaching of a self-proclaimed prophet of God.

In comparing these examples of the many where what Branham taught did not align with God’s Word, at a minimum we can say that Banham spoke presumptuously. And just as the Bereans would have done, should we not ignore Branham’s teaching?  

Email #4 - Sent May 30, 2020

Jason,

As we continue our discussion focusing in on examining William Branham as a prophet of God, it will be important to examine the evidence or vindication offered for the assertion that William Branham was a true prophet of God as he proclaimed over 400 times in over 1100 sermons.

William Branham proclaimed himself not only as a prophet of God, but as God’s singular messenger of God’s Word for what he called the Laodicean “church age” which ends when Christ returns. Many message denominations claim that Branham was a manifestation of Christ on earth. But there is a denomination, the SEVEN THUNDERS denomination, which believes that Branham is not the final prophet messenger although he was the seventh prophet messenger. There is a fundamental question that needs to be addressed based on Branham’s assertion that he was indeed God’s true prophet messenger for the Laodicean “church age”: Do we need a prophet messenger of God to carry His word today?

There is a Scripture which is often used by message ministers, you included based on what is posted on your social media accounts and is professed as core beliefs of your church, which has been said to point to the requirement of prophets to forerun the return of Jesus Christ. Obviously, the Scripture of which I speak is Malachi 4:5-6.

Just as we have in previous emails to you, I will take the example of the Bereans of the book of Acts:

Acts 17:10-11 (KJV)

10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.
11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

I suggest that we examine what is said against Scripture to see if what we have heard is actually from God.

Malachi 4:5-6

5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.

It is wise to make sure we examine this Scripture in context. We are instructed to use context as we examine Scripture in the Book of Isaiah:

Isaiah 28:10

10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little…

Let us explore the Book of Malachi, precept upon precept, line upon line. To understand the Book of Malachi, I find it important to understand to whom the book was written:

Malachi 1:1

1 The burden of the word of the LORD to Israel by Malachi.

Notice here that Malachi is written to the Nation of Israel. How can we confirm this? We need only look at the verse which directly precedes the now frequently used Malachi 4:5-6, verse 4:

Malachi 4:4

4 Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments.

There are two incredibly important statements made here that shed significant light on the context of the Book of Malachi. The first is “Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb…” and the second is “…FOR ALL ISRAEL”. In the first instance, we see Malachi state without equivocation that we are to remember the law of Moses which was command to him at Horeb (now called Mt Sanai).

This statement requires a great deal of unpacking, and could be several discussions all on its own, but we will deal in greater depth with this a bit later. For the moment, the statement that it is for those who are subject to the Law of Moses, the Jews, is importantly relevant to our discussion about context of the Book of Malachi.

The second incredibly important piece of data from Malachi 4:4 is “… FOR ALL ISRAEL”. This speaks to whom Malachi’s book was intended to impact.

In Malachi 4:5, we three additional pieces of data which are incredibly relevant to our discussion about context (line upon line, precept upon precept).

Malachi 4:5

5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:

First, we see that Elijah will be sent before the (2d data point) great and (3d data point) dreadful day of the Lord. This would look based on the conjunction in the last sentence AND between Great and Dreadful. Does this point to two separate time periods? Scripture will clarify this for us as we will see.

We see references in verse 6 which are very relevant to our discussion as well:

Malachi 4:6

6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.

Like I said, a lot to unpack, and each piece in context is very important.

Let’s start by looking forward in Scripture. We see words which are eerily reminiscent of verse 5 here:

Luke 1:5-17

5 In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest of Abijah’s division named Zechariah. His wife was from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.
6 Both were righteous in God’s sight, living without blame according to all the commands and requirements of the Lord.
7 But they had no children because Elizabeth could not conceive, and both of them were well along in years.
8 When his division was on duty and he was serving as priest before God,
9 it happened that he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to enter the sanctuary of the Lord and burn incense.
10 At the hour of incense the whole assembly of the people was praying outside.
11 An angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense.
12 When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and overcome with fear.
13 But the angel said to him: Do not be afraid, Zechariah, because your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will name him John.
14 There will be joy and delight for you, and many will rejoice at his birth.
15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord and will never drink wine or beer. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit

while still in his mother’s womb.

16 He will turn many of the sons of Israel to the Lord their God.

17 And he will go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of fathers to their children, and the disobedient to the understanding of the righteous, to make ready for the Lord a prepared people.

As a side note, what is interesting about this Scripture is that Branham, speaks to it directly here:

“And Mary said, “The Angel Gabriel met me and told me that I was going to bring forth a Son also. And I was to call His Name Jesus.” Well, just the time that she spoke Jesus, little John begin to leap and jump in his mother’s womb. Brother, the first time the Name of Jesus Christ was ever spoke, it brought life to a dead baby.” 50-0716 - Believest Thou This?

And here:

“Little John dead in his mother’s womb, and Elisabeth said, “Whence cometh the mother of my Lord to me?” Said, “For as soon as thy salutation come to my ears, my baby leaped in my wombs for joy.” What a baby (Hallelujah.), what a Name: “My baby leaped in my womb for joy when your salutation come to my ears.”” 51-0729A - The Resurrection Of Lazarus

And here:

“And the first time that that Name Jesus was spoke through mortal lips, little dead John, laying in his mother’s wombs got the Holy Ghost, and begin to leap and jump for joy. That’s right, and if the Name of Jesus Christ will bring life to a dead baby what ought it to do to a borned again Church? Hallelujah. Amen. Yes, sir.” 53-0906A - Believest Thou This?

And here:

“And just as soon as he said—she said, “Jesus,” little John come to life, begin leap in her wombs for joy. Brethren, the first time that the Name of Jesus Christ was ever spoke by mortal lips, brought life to a dead baby.” 53-1122 - The Resurrection Of Lazarus

And here:

“Like I’ve often thought, when Mary being pregnant by the Holy Spirit who overshadowed and created this baby, told her about what was happening. She run up to see her cousin, Elisabeth, who was six months with—with John, the wife of Zacharias. And they were cousins. And when Mary told Elisabeth that she also was going to have a baby, knowing no man, that the Holy Ghost was going to bring it, and said, “They called His Name ‘Jesus.’” You know, little John, and he was six months in the mother’s womb, and he hadn’t ever moved yet. See, that’s subnormal; about two or three months and the baby moves. But, this was subnormal, little John was dead in his mother’s womb. And as soon as Mary’s salutation come to her ear, said, “I shall call His name, Jesus.” The first time Jesus Christ was ever spoke by human lips, it brought a little, dead baby to life, in its mother’s womb.” 63-0627 - Jesus Christ The Same Yesterday, Today, And Forever

In these instances, Branham tells us that John the Baptist was dead. He would not move. While we appreciate that the Name of Jesus is All Capable of raising the dead, we find no Scriptural evidence to support the assertion by William Branham that John the Baptist was dead inside of his mother’s womb. We aren’t suggesting spiritual death, Branham explicitly tells us that the situation was “subnormal” because John “hadn’t ever moved yet”, and he tells us that the Name of Jesus brought a “dead baby to life”.

This assertion alone without any foundation Scripturally should call into question William Branham’s Scriptural authority as a prophet of God, but we have heard that this story was never shared under Branham’s proclamation of Scriptural authority “THUS SAITH THE LORD”. Branham of course as pointed out in my last email claimed that he was infallible, but I digress… back to the matter of Malachi and the requirement for a prophet messenger to carry God’s Word.

In our extract of the first chapter in the Book of Luke, we see a repetition of those words spoken in the Book of Malachi. In the King James version of the Bible, Luke 1 verse 17 is written thus:

Luke 1:17

17 And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.

Remember the conjunction in Malachi 4:6, the use of the word “AND”? Here we see a similar construction of that conjunction used. We see that Gabriel confirms that John comes in the spirit of Elias (Elijah’s other name), to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children (And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children), and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just (and the heart of the children to their fathers).

But how do we know that this is the situation? Is there room for interpretation? There might be some room, except for what we see when we read ahead a bit further. Jesus Christ Himself tells us this:

Luke 16:16

16 The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.

The law and the prophets were until JOHN THE BAPTIST.

Jesus also tells us this:

Matthew 17:10-13 (HCSB)

10 So the disciples questioned Him, “Why then do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?”
11 “Elijah is coming and will restore everything,” He replied.
12 “But I tell you: Elijah has already come, and they didn’t recognize him. On the contrary, they did whatever they pleased to him. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands.”
13 Then the disciples understood that He spoke to them about John the Baptist.

And here, Jesus confirms that it was John the Baptist of whom the Angel spoke:

Matthew 11:7-15

7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses
9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.
13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come.
15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

Here, Jesus confirms that John the Baptist is the Elias which was spoken of through the prophets. Jesus also confirms once again here that the law and the prophets were until John the Baptist. HE THAT HATH EARS TO HEAR, LET HIM HEAR!

Line upon line, precept upon precept, let us look forward into Scripture again.

We also know that Jesus was sent to minister directly to the Nation of Israel:

Matthew 15:21-24

21 When Jesus left there, He withdrew to the area of Tyre and Sidon.
22 Just then a Canaanite woman from that region came and kept crying out, “Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David! My daughter is cruelly tormented by a demon.”
23 Yet He did not say a word to her. So His disciples approached Him and urged Him, “Send her away because she cries out after us.”
24 He replied, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

Does this mean that he ignored the Gentiles? Certainly not. In the same story, Jesus said this:

Matthew 15 25-28

25 But she came, knelt before Him, and said, “Lord, help me!”
26 He answered, “It isn’t right to take the children’s bread and throw it to their dogs.”
27 “Yes, Lord,” she said, “yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table!”
28 Then Jesus replied to her, “Woman, your faith is great. Let it be done for you as you want.” And from that moment her daughter was cured.

This is also consistent with the context of the Book of Malachi as it is intended for the Nation of Israel, and NOT for the Gentile churches.

Here we look at what the Apostle Paul tells us about prophets to carry God’s Word:

Hebrews 1:1-2

1 Long ago God spoke to the fathers by the prophets at different times and in different ways.
2 In these last days, He has spoken to us by His Son. God has appointed Him heir of all things and made the universe through Him.

The Apostle Paul reaffirms what Jesus has told us concerning prophets and the Mosaic Law, agreeing that prophets have been supplanted by the Word of God through the Holy Spirit. How do we know the Holy Spirit is to carry this Word of God forward?

Here is what Jesus Christ Himself tells us about the Holy Spirit:

John 14:15-18

15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commands.
16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever.
17 He is the Spirit of truth. The world is unable to receive Him because it doesn’t see Him or know Him. But you do know Him, because He remains with you and will be[i] in you.
18 I will not leave you as orphans; I am coming to you.

John 14:25-26

25 “I have spoken these things to you while I remain with you.
26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit—the Father will send Him in My name—will teach you all things and remind you of everything I have told you.

Jesus introduces the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost:

Acts 1:3-5

3 After He had suffered, He also presented Himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them during 40 days and speaking about the kingdom of God.
4 While He was together with them, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the Father’s promise. “This,” He said, “is what you heard from Me;
5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

And so, we see that the Apostle Paul reaffirms what Jesus taught.

The question is often asked, “so, is it that you do not believe in prophets after John the Baptist? Of course there are prophets today. Scripture takes us to the Apostle Paul’s discussion concerning offices and gifts which are available through the Holy Spirit:

Ephesians 4:11-13

11 And He personally gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers,
12 for the training of the saints in the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ,
13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God’s Son, growing into a mature man with a stature measured by Christ’s fullness.

But what do we know about how prophets are to behave today? The Apostle Paul tells us this as well:

1 Corinthians 14:26-33

26 What then is the conclusion, brothers? Whenever you come together, each one has a psalm, a teaching, a revelation, another language, or an interpretation. All things must be done for edification.
27 If any person speaks in another language, there should be only two, or at the most three, each in turn, and someone must interpret.
28 But if there is no interpreter, that person should keep silent in the church and speak to himself and to God.
29 Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should evaluate.
30 But if something has been revealed to another person sitting there, the first prophet should be silent.
31 For you can all prophesy one by one, so that everyone may learn and everyone may be encouraged.
32 And the prophets’ spirits are under the control of the prophets,
33 since God is not a God of disorder but of peace.

And when do we see that the transition between the Law of Moses and a prophet to carry God’s word to His people and when a prophet is no longer required?

This is precisely the moment when Jesus Christ Himself ushered in the New Covenant:

Matthew 27:50-51

50 Jesus shouted again with a loud voice and gave up His spirit.
51 Suddenly, the curtain of the sanctuary was split in two from top to bottom; the earth quaked and the rocks were split.

The significance of the curtain in the Sanctuary splitting from top to bottom cannot be over emphasized. In the OLD COVENANT, there were two ways in which God’s people interacted with God. 1) Through the High Priest in the Holy of Holies, and 2) through specific instructions and proclamations from God’s prophets. We have seen how God changed the requirement for a prophet by sending the Holy Spirit and charging Him to carry God’s Word forward. We see in this Scripture how God moved from Mosaic Law where remission of sin was accomplished through sacrificial offering, to the grace of God and direct access to God. The Holy of Holies was immediately made available to everyone when the curtain was torn at the moment of Christ’s sacrifice.

Why was it necessary for the curtain to be torn, and for the Mosaic Law to be replaced by the grace of God through the Holy Spirit? This Scripture explains the reasoning:

Matthew 28:18-20

18 Then Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Here Jesus is clear. While Jesus’ ministry was to the Nation of Israel as He told us in Matthew 15, He commissioned his disciples to make disciples of ALL NATIONS, including the Gentiles and those who knew nothing about Mosaic Law. The Nation of Israel rejected the ministry of Jesus and failed to accept Him as the Messiah. This was not true in individual cases such as the Bereans who were Jews but who accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ through Paul and Silas. But it is universally accepted that the Nation of Israel rejected the ministry of Jesus Christ.

We know that there were disagreements in the Book of Acts between the disciples concerning practicing the Mosaic Law and binding the Gentiles to the Law. We see the Apostle Paul address the issue here:

Galatians 2:11 21

11 But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face because he stood condemned,
12 For he regularly ate with the Gentiles before certain men came from James. However, when they came, he withdrew and separated himself, because he feared those from the circumcision party.
13 Then the rest of the Jews joined his hypocrisy, so that even Barnabas was carried away by their hypocrisy.
14 But when I saw that they were deviating from the truth of the gospel, I told Cephas in front of everyone, “If you, who are a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you compel Gentiles to live like Jews?”
15 We who are Jews by birth and not “Gentile sinners”
16 know that no one is justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ. And we have believed in Christ Jesus so that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no human being will be justified.
17 But if we ourselves are also found to be “sinners” while seeking to be justified by Christ, is Christ then a promoter of sin? Absolutely not!
18 If I rebuild the system I tore down, I show myself to be a lawbreaker.
19 For through the law I have died to the law, so that I might live for God. I have been crucified with Christ
20 and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died for nothing.

Here we see that the Apostles Paul and Peter (Cephas) disagreed about projection of the Law of Moses onto Gentiles who were not raised with Mosaic Law. The Apostle Paul’s argument supports the elimination of the requirement for Mosaic Law and animal sacrifice for the redemption of sin and speaks to its replacement from the grace of God through the Holy Spirit.

To net out the entire subject, as we examine Scripture concerning Malachi and the assertion by Branham, you, and others that Malachi 4:5-6 somehow refers to William Branham and a requirement for a Gentile prophet, we discover that Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, and the body of Scripture which is examined line upon line, and precept upon precept tell us that it is incorrect to ascribe any such claim of Scriptural authority or prophetic office to William Branham. We do not live through the Law of Moses as Branham frequently taught, and we have no requirement for a Gentile prophet when we have the Word of God and the Holy Spirit.

So, I would ask the question… “If as we have demonstrated we have no requirement for a Gentile prophet as Branham proclaims himself to be, then what is the basis for Branham’s assertion that he is a prophet messenger?”  

Email #5 - Sent June 23, 2020

Jason,

I had hoped that when you invited me to email you with information concerning William Branham that you would be interacting with me. Given that you haven’t returned any of the emails which I sent, this will be the last email until I hear back from you.

In my last email, I put forth the proposition that Scripture does not support a Gentile prophet for this or any other “age”. In that email, we spoke about the frequently used “proof text” that Branham is a prophet of God, the Scripture into which ministers who teach the message and even Branham himself inserted William Branham, Malachi 4:5-6. But interestingly enough, William Branham is very well known for his “special revelation” from God concerning what he called the Seven Church “AGES”.

There are denominations in the message, one of which believes that what was “prophesied” by William Branham prior to publishing his book called “The Exposition of the Seven Church Ages”, first published in January 1965 are not divinely inspired, but are Branham’s opinions and suggestions. Two issues arise from this thought process. The first is that Branham spoke using his self-proclaimed Scriptural authority of “THUS SAITH THE LORD” many many times in his sermons prior to the publishing of this series of sermons and the book. How is it that Branham proclaims himself as a prophet of God, even speaks about his commissioning as a healer, and as God’s “messenger”, prior to this book being published and yet what he proclaimed prior to this book is not valid? There is no Scriptural basis for this thought process at all. And, second, Branham’s book was published originally in January 1965 as an EDITED compilation of sermons which were preached by William Branham. Now, if Branham was INFALLIBLE as he stated in the book, if what he spoke was absolutely truth, then why were the edits necessary?

“BUT I DENY UPON THE INFALLIBLE EVIDENCE OF THE WORD THAT THERE IS MORE THAN ONE MAJOR PROPHET-MESSENGER WHO WILL REVEAL THE MYSTERIES AS CONTAINED IN THE WORD, AND WHO HAS THE MINISTRY TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN TO THE FATHERS. "Thus saith the Lord" by His unfailing Word stands, and shall stand and be vindicated. There is one prophet-messenger to this age. On the basis of human behavior alone, anyone knows that where there are many people there is even divided opinion on lesser points of a major doctrine which they all hold together. Who then will have the power of infallibility which is to be restored in this last age, for this last age is going to go back to manifesting the Pure Word Bride? That means we will have the Word once again as it was perfectly given, and perfectly understood in the days of Paul. I will tell you who will have it. It will be a prophet as thoroughly vindicated, or even more thoroughly vindicated than was any prophet in all the ages from Enoch to this day, because this man will of necessity have the capstone prophetic ministry, and God will shew him forth. He won't need to speak for himself, God will speak for him by the voice of the sign. Amen.” An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age

What is even more important than the edits or the fact that a denomination of the message of William Branham believing that sermons prior to the publication of this book are marginally important is that this book is a near mirror image, some would even say in many cases a “word for word plagiarism” of books before it was published. This is important because this doctrine of the seven church “AGES” is credited to Branham as his most critical and important revelation from God.

But here’s what we know about the basis for the thought of church “ages”, dispensationalism: this is not new revelation and not even new or original thought. Dispensationalism is defined as “a religious interpretive system and metanarrative for the Bible. It considers biblical history as divided by God into Dispensations, defined periods or ages to which God has allotted distinctive administrative principles.” Throughout history, there have been many different ideas concerning these “defined periods”. A major thought concerning periods of different dispensations is as follows:

Age of Innocence - from Creation to the Fall of Man Age of Conscience - Fall of Man to the Flood Age of Human Governance - Flood to Call of Abraham Age of Promise - Call of Abraham to Law of Moses Age of Law - Law of Moses to Apostle Paul (Acts Chapter 2) Age of Grace - Acts Chapter 2 - Rapture Age of Millennium - Rapture to Return of Christ

But there were those who considered that the different dispensations all fall within the Scriptural time after Pentecost (Acts Chapter 2) until the return of Christ. Among these ministers were Augustine of Hippo, Joachim of Fiore, James Inglis, James H. Brookes, Reuben Archer Torrey, A. J. Gordon, William Eugene Blackstone, Robert Henry Boll, John Nelson Darby, C. I. Scofield, Harry A. Ironside, Lewis Sperry Chafer, William R. Newell, Miles Stanford, and Uriah Smith of the Seventh Day Adventists. The most interesting dispensationalist in the context of William Branham’s “REVELATION” is Clarence Larkin who also holds the post-Acts Chapter 2 view of dispensationalism. Larkin was born in 1850 and died in 1924. He was an American Baptist pastor and believed that he also was the “Elijah Spirit” based on his individual interpretation of the church “ages”.

What we know is that Branham mentioned Clarence Larkin in his sermons:

“And I’m very grateful to Mr. Smith, of the Adventist church, for his views. I’m very grateful to Dr. Larkin, of his views. I’m grateful to all these great scholars, for their views on this.” 61-0806 - The Seventieth Week Of Daniel
“I had my own idea, as every minister does, of reading maybe what other men had said; and believing as much as I possible, with them, on the things that they had drawed up, their conclusion. I had read the book of Mr. Smith, Uriah Smith, which is the Adventist teacher, and I had read his—his thoughts on it. And I had read Mr. Larkin. I had read, oh, so many different ones, of their commentaries on This. But, somehow or other’n, I thought I had a—a little view of it, myself, that might be of places different. But trying one time, just speaking three subjects, the first…or the four subjects of the four horse riders. I preached on it four nights, one on one horse, and the other.” 64-0719M - The Feast Of The Trumpets

What is interesting is how Clarence Larkin defined these dispensational “ages” contrasted with what Branham, taught as his “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD”.

LARKIN:

“The character of the Church at Ephesus is a fair outline of the Church Period from A. D. 70 to A. D. 170.” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 128 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).

BRANHAM:

“Now, the first church age started about A.D. 53, when Paul established the church in--in Ephesus... and the church age lapped over to 170.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
      • NOTE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LARKIN’S START OF THIS CHURCH “AGE” AT 70 A.D. AND BRANHAM’S START OF THIS CHURCH AGE AT 53 A.D.***

LARKIN:

“...the Smyrna Church...extended from A. D. 170 to Constantine A. D. 312.” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 128 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).

BRANHAM:

“...then started in the Smyrna Church Age which lasted from A.D. 170 until A.D. 312.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205

LARKIN:

“...Pergamos...extends from the accession of Constantine, A. D. 312 to A. D. 606, when Boniface III was crowned “Universal Bishop.”” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 129 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).

BRANHAM:

“Then come in the Pergamos Church Age, and the Pergamos Church Age begin at 312 and lasted till A.D. 606.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205

LARKIN:

“The Message to the Church at Thyatira. This Period extended from A. D. 606 to the Reformation A. D. 1520.” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 130 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).

BRANHAM:

“Then come in the Thyatira Church Age, and the church age of Thyatira begin at 606 and went to 1520, the dark ages.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205

LARKIN:

“The “Sardis Period” extended from A. D. 1520 to about A. D. 1750.” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 130 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).

BRANHAM:

“And then the Sardis Church Age begin at 1520 and lasted till 1750, the Lutheran age.” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205

LARKIN:

“The “Philadelphia Period” covers the time between A. D. 1750 and A. D. 1900.” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 131 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).

BRANHAM:

“Then from 1750, the next age come in was the Philadelphian, Wesley age; that begin at 1750 and lasted till 1906”. THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205
      • NOTE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE ENDS OF THE CHURCH AGES, LARKIN ENDS THIS CHURCH “AGE” IN 1900, BRANHAM ENDS THIS CHURCH “AGE” IN 1906***

LARKIN:

“The character of the Church today is Laodicean, and as the Laodicean Period is to continue until the Church of the “New-Born” is taken out, we cannot hope for any great change until the Lord comes back.” Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, or “God’s Plan and Purpose in the Ages“, 133 (Philadelphia, PA: Clarence Larkin, 1918).

BRANHAM:

“And at 1906 the Laodicean church age set in, and I don't know when it'll end, but I predict it'll be done by 1977. I predict, not the Lord told me, but I predict it according to a vision that was showed me some years ago...” THE EPHESIAN CHURCH AGE 60-1205

Aside from two very discrete differences in the start/end date of church ages, Branham’s “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD” concerning the church “ages” is exactly the same as Clarence Larkin’s representation of these post Acts Chapter 2 dispensational ages.

Now, given that Clarence Larkin also promoted himself as a prophet and the “Elijah Spirit” to forerun the coming of Christ, shouldn’t Branham’s “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD” actually be called Clarence Larkin’s special revelation from God?

Branham did extend the notion of these dispensational periods by adding what Branham called the Church “Age” Messengers. These messengers were critical because Branham promoted himself as the Seventh Church “Age” Prophet “Messenger”:

“The trouble of it is, you Pentecostal people, you Baptists, you Methodists, you've failed to recognize your God-given privilege. Hear me. THUS SAITH THE LORD, you believe it with all your heart. He promised it in the last day. Hasn't been for two thousand years, because the Bible said it wouldn't be. But Jesus said... As it was in the days of Sodom, when that Angel come, turned His back to the tent, and asked for Sarah, and told what she said in the building... How many knows that? Jesus said, "As it was in the days of Sodom, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of man." When? Just before Sodom burned. That's just before this world's going to burn. The whole unbelieving world will be--go into chaos and burn with fervent heat. We know that. And just before that time...

Remember, THUS SAITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, this is your last sign. Write it in your Bible. And if something rises besides this, and greater than this, call me a false prophet. That's quite a statement. I watch what I say. I'm in contact with better than ten million people around the world (See?), so I have to say that; and I know I didn't say that myself.” 61-0414 - Be Not Afraid, it is I

“This is the last sign. Remember, THUS SAITH THE LORD! Did you ever hear me say that but what it was true? You are seeing your last sign. That's Scriptural. You've seen your last sign, Pentecost.” 64-0411 - Spiritual Amnesia

Here are the messengers of the church “ages” as defined by Branham:

  • Ephesus 53 - 170 AD Messenger Paul (5 AD - 67 AD)
  • Smyrna 170 - 312 AD Messenger Irenaeus (130 AD - 200 AD)
  • Pergamos 312 - 606 AD Messenger Martin (316 AD - 397 AD)
  • Thyatira 606 - 1520 Messenger Columba (521 AD - 597 AD)
  • Sardis 1520 - 1750 Messenger Martin Luther (1438 - 1546)
  • Philadelphia 1750 - 1906 Messenger John Wesley (1703 - 1791
  • Laodicea 1906 - Present Messenger William Branham (circa 1909 - 1965)

So, was the fact that there were messengers assigned to the church “ages” of dispensation Branham’s “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD”? What exactly was the “SPECIAL REVELATION FROM GOD” to Branham which clearly vindicates him as a prophet of God when so many other dispensationalists and prophet “Elijah Spirits” like Larkin provided exactly the same information well prior to Branham preaching his sermons and publishing his book concerning the Exposition of the Seven Church Ages??

There are some other issues concerning the “messengers” which Branham named for each church “age”:

The Apostle Paul was martyred between 68 and 73 A.D. John wrote the Book of Revelation from the Isle of Patmos around 95 A.D. If Branham was correct, then Paul had been dead for over 20 years when John sent him the letter which is mentioned in the Book of Revelation:

Revelation 1:10-11(HCSB)

10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard a loud voice behind me like a trumpet
11 saying, “Write on a scroll what you see and send it to the seven churches: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”

I guess John the Revelator didn’t get the memo.

Message Believers cringe when people speak against William Branham's doctrines. What believers and ministers of the message do not realize is that Irenaeus taught against the Serpent's Seed doctrine. He labeled it a heresy. And William Branham said you had to believe the Messenger for your “Age” in order to be saved. Are those in the church “age” not saved because Irenaeus taught against a doctrine which Branham taught as fundamental? And did God change His mind somewhere along the line?

William Branham tells us that the Thyatira church “age” started in 606 A.D. Branham named Columba as the messenger of the Thyatira church “age”. But Columba died in 597 A.D. which is 9 years prior to the start of his church “age”. How is someone the messenger for his church “age” when he wasn’t alive?

John Wesley labeled William Branham’s understanding on the Godhead as:

"...Blasphemy, joined with consummate nonsense.” ~ Thoughts on the writings of Baron Swedenborg, by John Wesley, Wakefield, May 8, 1782.

We know this because William Branham's doctrine on the Godhead was very close to Emmanuel Swedenborg's doctrine on the Godhead, and John Wesley concluded the following about Swedenborg's doctrine:

“O my brethren, let none of you that fear God recommend such a writer anymore; much less labor to make the deadly poison palatable, by sweetening it with all care! All his folly and nonsense we may excuse; but not his making God a liar; not his contradicting, in so open and flagrant a manner, the whole oracles of God! True, his tales are often exceeding lively, and as entertaining as the tales of...the fairies! But I dare not give up my Bible for them; and I must give up one or the other. If the preceding extracts are from God, then the Bible is only a fable! But if all Scriptures are given by inspiration of God, then let these dreams sink into the pit from whence they came." ~ Thoughts on the writings of Baron Swedenborg, by John Wesley, Wakefield, May 8, 1782.

Again, can the followers of Wesley’s message according to Branham actually be saved because they disagree with a fundamental doctrine of William Branham? Remember, Branham said you cannot be saved unless you follow HIS doctrines and HIS teachings:

“Now, let us all pray. Lord, with our heads bowed, just now, it's got to be known that Your Scripture's the truth, and I've told the truth of It, or either, I am wrong and a false prophet, or Your Scripture has misled us. Now, Lord, we know that that's not so. We know that Your Scriptures are Truth.” LED.BY.THE.SPIRIT_ LA.CA TUESDAY_ 59-0407
“Remember, I'm not a false prophet. I tell the truth. God wouldn't lie. And see if it isn't going to be greater that it has ever has been at any time.” GOD.HATH.A.PROVIDED.WAY_ JEFF.IN SUNDAY_ 56-0108

Branham told us that to NOT believe in his teaching was to Blaspheme the Holy Spirit:

“...She said, "Reverend Branham, if I want somebody, talk to me about like that, I'll get somebody that's got some sense; not you." I said, "Very well. I have done all I can do. Remember, sister, you--if you blaspheme the Holy Ghost, you'll never be saved.” 53-0611 SHOW.US.THE.FATHER.AND.IT'LL.SATISFY.US_ CONNERSVILLE.IN

and in this case, you can’t be saved:

Mark 3:28-30 (HCSB)

28 I assure you: People will be forgiven for all sins and whatever blasphemies they may blaspheme.
29 But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin”—
30 because they were saying, “He has an unclean spirit.”

Let’s speak about the nature of the character of the “messengers”. Here William Branham tells us that the messengers were all prophets:

“and… see the plummet in the hands of Zerubbabel with whose—with those seven; these are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth. The seven eyes—eyes mean seeing. Seeing means prophets, seers. This Lamb had seven horns, and on each horn had an eye: seven eyes. What is it? Christ and His Bride. Seven Church Ages, out of there was seven prophets that went forth, seven seers, eyes. So the last one must be a seer. All right.” 63-0317E - The Breach Between The Seven Church Ages And The Seven Seals

The VERY NEXT DAY, Branham tells us that the messengers EXCEPT HIM were In fact NOT PROPHETS but were “REFORMERS”:

“The reformers came to reform the last fallen church age preceding them. And then after the reformers come and reform the—the church age from where it was and is went back into the world, then they start a new church age: always done it, always. Now, we went through that. See? In other words, here'd been a Catholic church age, of the Roman Catholic church. Along come Luther, a reformer. He's called a reformer. And what does he do? He starts right out there a-hammering away, and when he does, he protests the church, and the first thing you know, what does he do? He builds the same thing that he come to drive out of: another church. Then they have another church age. Then the first thing you know, here comes… The church age is in such a mess, along comes John Wesley, another reformer (See?), builds another church age. Get what I mean? Another church age is built up. They're all reformers. Notice. This last message of the last church age is not a reformer; he is a prophet, not a reformer. Show me where one prophet ever started a church age. He's not a reformer; he is a prophet. Others was reformers but not prophets. If they would've been, the Word of the Lord comes to the prophet; that's the reason they continued on in the baptism in Father, Son, Holy Ghost, and all these other things, because they were reformers and not prophets. But yet they were great men of God and saw the need of the day that they lived in, and God anointed them, and they sent out there and tore those things to pieces. But the full Word of God never come to them, because they was not prophets. They were reformers. 194 But in the last days it'll have to be a prophet to take up the mysteries of God, bring it back, because the mysteries was only re—known by prophets. So it has to be this fellow come. See what I mean now? He can't be a reformer; it's got to be a prophet, because it's got to be somebody that's gifted and set there that catches the Word.” 63-0318 - The First Seal, para. 191-192

Even the denomination of the message of William Branham has to be somewhat confused. Were the “messengers” prophets or reformers?

Key to this entire discussion is the use of the term CHURCH “AGE”. This term which is a construct of the several dispensationalists throughout history suggest identifiable and distinct periods of “administrative” time throughout Scripture. This notion is not inconsistent with Scripture as revealed by John the Revelator in the Book of Revelation. The term CHURCH “AGE” as defined by those dispensationalists including Larkin and Branham who place all of the “AGES” post Book of Acts Chapter 2 (Pentecost) have a bit of an issue.

A critical verse in the Bible which is frequently and consistently brought forward as vindication of William Branham as the prophet messenger of the Laodicean church “age” is Revelation 10:7:

Revelation 10:7 (KJV)

7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.

Because message believers and ministers promote the fact that Branham is the seventh “church age” messenger, then they insert him into this Scripture which speaks about John’s prophetic revelation. But there are issues, not the least of which is there is no such mention of a “church age” throughout Scripture. There are “churches in Asia”, and there are angels associated with these seven churches. But there is no mention, no indication of any sort, that there are “church ages”. But I digress…

And here is how one can determine Scripturally that the “church age” is not a prophetic construct:

Revelation 1:4

"John, to the seven churches that are in Asia."

Revelation 1:11

“Write what you see in a book and send it to the seven churches, to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.”

So, Scripture confirms that there are seven physical churches in Asia. Now, here is how John is helped to determine present day from future or prophetic vision:

Revelation 1:19

"Write therefore the things that you have seen, those THAT ARE and those THAT ARE TO TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS." [emphasis mine]

In Revelation Chapters 2 & 3, John writes all of the things he was commissioned to say to each of the seven churches, with Laodicea wrapping up the end of chapter 3. In other words, the Church at Laodicea is a present tense physical church. It isn’t until Chapter 4 that the prophecy actually takes place in John’s future. Read carefully the first verse of Chapter 4:

Revelation 4:1

"After this I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven! And the first voice, which I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS.” [emphasis mine]

Remember Revelation 1:19? "write therefore the things you have seen, those THAT ARE and those THAT ARE TO TAKE PLACE AFTER THIS."...

Revelation 2&3 were the things "that are,”, referring to things, people and places that existed at the time John had his vision, while chapter 4 begins the things "that are to take place after this" as is indicated by the text itself!

Since we don’t find any indication of Scripture about “church ages” let’s see what Scripture says about inserting the word “age” or “ages” into John’s Revelation:

Revelation 22:17-19 (KJV)

17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

Even though the word “age” is a small word, it is added to Scripture by Larkin, Branham, and other post-Acts Chapter 2 dispensationalists. The consequences of adding words to John’s Revelation are pretty dire and rather avoidable by not inserting phrases like CHURCH “AGES”.

And so, we see that the verses which are used as “proof texts”, offered by message believers and ministers of Branham’s vindication as a prophet of God, are mis-used and do not in fact indicate Branham is a prophet of God.

Since we now know that there are no such things in Scripture as “church ages”, and we know that Branham is not vindicated by Malachi 4:5-6 or Revelation 10:7 then the question remains… “who was William Branham?”



Footnotes

  1. The Holy Bible: Holman Christian Standard Version. (Nashville: Holman Bible Publishers, 2009), Ac 17:10–11.
  2. An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages - Chapter Nine - The Laodicean Church Age
  3. EARLY.SPIRITUAL.EXPERIENCES_ HAMMOND.IN SUNDAY_ 52-0713A
  4. ISRAEL.AND.THE.CHURCH.5 JEFF.IN 53-0329
  5. DO.YOU.NOW.BELIEVE PHOENIX.AZ 54-0307E
  6. THE.QUEEN.OF.SHEBA CHICAGO.IL 58-0107
  7. ASHAMED JEFF.IN 65-0711
  8. ASHAMED JEFF.IN 65-0711
  9. The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Ro 13:1–7.


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