First Seal

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The Book Sealed With Seven Seals
First Seal
Second Seal
Third Seal
Fourth Seal
Fifth Seal
Sixth Seal
Seventh Seal


William Branham preached a series of sermons in March 1963 on the Seven Seals of the book of Revelation. This article contains a summary of these sermons as taught by William Branham, who taught that each seal identifies a religous disturbance. Much of William Branham's teachings on the Seven Seals can also be found in the works of Clarence Larkin, a dispensational Baptist author.

Each seal opens a new chapter in the book sealed with seven seals. This page reviews William Branham's commentary on the first seal, as found in the first two verses of Revelation Chapter 6.

Revelation Chapter 6 Verse 1
And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. (Revelation 6:1-2)


The Lamb worthy to open the Seals

William Branham taught that the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the Lamb of God and the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, is the only one worthy to open the book sealed with seven seals. When Revelation 6 speaks of the Lamb opening the first seal, it is Jesus himself opening the book.


Noise like thunder

William Branham taught that the noise of thunder is the voice of God from heaven, bringing the Word of God. The voice of God is only heard once at the start of the seals, and is not heard again until all of the seals are opened.

  • In the book of John, Chapter 12, Jesus says Father, glorify thy name.
  • Immediately a voice speaks from heaven saying I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.
  • The people listening to Jesus didn't necessarily hear a voice, but some said that it thundered and others said An angel spake to him.

Other thunderings in the Bible include:

  • II Samuel 22:14 The LORD thundered from heaven, and the most High uttered his voice.
  • Job 37:5 God thundereth marvellously with his voice; great things doeth he, which we cannot comprehend.
  • Psalms 18:13 The LORD also thundered in the heavens, and the Highest gave his voice; hail stones and coals of fire.
  • John 12:28-29 Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again. The people therefore, that stood by, and heard it, said that it thundered: others said, An angel spake to him.
  • Revelation 14:2 And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps:


The first of the four beasts

Four beasts, full of eyes before and behind, are around the throne in heaven. Each of these beasts have six wings, but are different in their appearance. The first beast is like a lion, the second like a calf, the third has a face like a man, and the fourth is like a flying eagle. (Revelation 4:6-8)

William Branham taught that these beasts are Cherubims, or covering angels, whose job is to protect the testimony of God. Unlike people, Cherubims can appear in many different forms:

  1. The Cherubims that Moses comissioned to cover the mercy seat had only one face, which were turned toward the mercy seat.
  2. The prophet Ezekiel saw four Cherubims each with four faces. These faces were of a lion, ox, man, and eagle.
  3. Ezekiel saw engravings in the temple in heaven of Cherubims with two faces.
  4. Lucifer was once known as the "covering Cherub", but he was cast down from heaven after he rebelled against God.

The first beast to speak is the Lion. Like the Gospel of Matthew (the first of the four books protecting the testimony of Jesus Christ and giving witness to the book of Acts), the Lion testifies of the kingship of Jesus Christ. Under the anointing of the Lion, the early Christians boldly spread the gospel of Jesus Christ around the world with signs following.


Revelation Chapter 6 Verse 2
And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer. (Revelation 6:1-2)

A white horse

William Branham taught that a horse represents a power, and white represents innocence. Unlike the white horse rider in Revelation Chapter 19 whose name is called the Word of God, this rider does not have a name. This rider is the Spirit of the Antichrist impersonating Jesus Christ. Attenpting to blot out His name, the rider instead uses the titles "Father, Son, and Holy Spirit".

The white horse rider cannot be Jesus Christ, who is opening the seals at the time of this prophecy. The Antichrist is is so close to true Christianity, that it would deceive the very elect if possible (Matt. 24:24).

“about the time Christ come on the throne, the antichrist come on the throne: Judas. About the time Christ went off the earth, Judas went off the earth. Just about the time the Holy Spirit come back, the antichrist come back.” (Sermon: The First Seal)


A bow with no arrows

William Branham noted that this rider, who again is the spirit of the Antichrist, has a bow with no arrows. Without any arrows, he is powerless to persecute other Christians on his own, and he is also not directly responsible for the blood of the martyrs at this time.

Between 325 A.D. and 800 A.D. the Catholic Church relied on the military power of Christian nations to enforce its doctrine. Contstantine I began this tradition, and by 385 A.D. Emperor Maximus executed Priscillian of Avila on charges of heresy, even though both Martin of Tours and Pope Siricius appealed on his behalf. By 700 A.D., however, the Popes were no longer condemning execution for expansion, as evidenced by the baptism of Caedwalla of Wessex, a ruthless warlord who conquered southern England in the name of Christianity, by Pope Sergius I. By 800 A.D. Charlemagne was crowned as the Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, and Rome's direct association with enforcement became official.


An earthly crown

John saw that this rider received a crown, signifying that the Antichrist spirit had become a man.

By 400 A.D. the Holy See had replaced the Holy Spirit as the Head of the Christian Church by assuming the title of Pope. By the 8th century, the Papal States had been established, and Charlemagne had been crowned as the "Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire". By the turn of the century the Pope was wearing a tiara, known as the papal crown, to signify the fulfillment of this prophecy.


Conquering and to Conquer

William Branham said:

When he starts off as a Nicolaitan spirit in the church, he's a spirit. You can't crown a spirit. But three hundred years later he become a pope. And then they crowned him. He had no crown to start with, but he got a crown later (See?), when that spirit become incarnate. See? He become a man. Nicolaitane doctrine become a man; then they could crown it.”
Sermon: the First Seal
"Nico" means "to conquer." "Laity" means "the church, the laity." "Nicolaitanes" "to conquer the laity": take the Holy Spirit out of the church and give it all to one holy man, let him be the boss of all of it.
Sermon: the First Seal
Now, remember, the antichrist [false prophet] and the beast is the same self spirit. ...Remember, Nicolaitan (See?), it had to be incarnate before it could be crowned. See? Now, watch this. Three stages: first stage he's called antichrist; second stage, he's called the false prophet; third stage, he's called the beast.”
Sermon: the First Seal
Satan's superman, a incarnate devil. He's a educated genius. he's got a lot of wisdom; so has Satan. He tries to sell it. He sold it to Eve; he sold it to us.
Sermon: the First Seal


Further Studies:

Mystery Babylon, Angels.


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