William Branham and His Message
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Issues and Events in the Life of William Branham
In trying to determine if a witness is being truthful, journalists and lawyers will test all the elements of his or her testimony that can be tested. If this investigation reveals that the person was wrong in those details, this casts considerable doubt on the veracity of his or her entire story.
You shall not spread a false report. (Exodus 23:1)
Was Wm. Branham Really Commissioned by an Angel in 1946?
Angel’s Visit in Cabin or Cave?
Evil Spirit Flies into William Branham’s Ear
William Branham, Born April 6, 1909. . . or was he?
Pillar of Fire Descends in Switzerland
Pillar of Fire Photo, Houston, TX
Man Attempts to Expose William Branham as Fraud
Thinking Man's Filter
Light Over 1933 Baptism
The Controversy Between "You" and "You're Message"
Amber Cloud Over Finger Rock
Danny Henry Prophecy
Was William Branham's Angel Moroni?
Discussion of the Little Boy from Finland Raised from the Dead
And They Were All Healed Every One--Spurious Claims of Wm. Branham's Healng Campaigns
Was Kenneth Hagin's Prophecy of Wm. Branham's Death of the Lord?
White Eagle in Rock at Sabino Canyon
Brief Narrative of Each Notable Event
Was Wm. Branham Really Commissioned by an Angel in 1946?
Within the first four years of his ministry, William Branham told two conflicting versions of how he began his worldwide healing ministry. We will chronicle a timeline for each of these different accounts side by side to reveal some glaring contradictions that most Message believers are unaware of. The first timeline (column 1) comes from Wm. Branham’s booklet, "I Was Not Disobedient Unto the Heavenly Vision," published around 1946 and republished online at "The Voice," a pro-Branham Website.
The second timeline (column 2) was obtained from pages 76-91 of Gordon Lindsay’s book, A Man Sent From God, published in 1950. Pay close attention to the dates in column 1 as they compare to those in column 2. Also note that in his first published version as it appears in "I Was Not Disobedient Unto the Heavenly Vision", Wm. Branham made no mention at all of being visited by an angel who commissioned him to start his healing ministry:
I Was Not Disobedient Unto the Heavenly Vision A Man Sent From God In March 1945, Wm. Branham has vision of "a great mountain of the bread of life" from which he was to feed a large audience of people dressed in white robes under a tent or auditorium. The following night, he described the vision to his church. He makes no mention of being visited by an angel. Wm. Branham said that on May 7, 1946, he was visited by an angel who commissioned him to start his Healing Campaign. On Memorial Sunday evening (May 26, 1946), he described this visitation to his church. Three weeks after the vision (March or April of 1945), Wm . Branham received a telegram from Robert Daugherty requesting prayer for his dying daughter, Betty. While Wm. Branham was describing the angelic visitation to his church on Memorial Sunday (May 26, 1946), a telegram is handed to him. The telegram was from a man named Robert Daugherty requesting him to come to St. Louis to pray for his dying daughter, Betty. The night after he received the telegram, following Sunday evening service, Wm. Branham boarded a train for St. Louis and arrived the following morning (March or April of 1945). Betty was healed the next day after prayer. On the evening of the church service during which he received the telegram, Wm. Branham boarded a train for St. Louis (May 26, 1946). Betty is healed the next day after prayer. Three months after Betty was healed, Robert Daugherty asks Wm. Branham to come to St. Louis for a healing campaign (June or July of 1945). Wm. Branham agrees to come. The following Sunday, he tells his congregation of his plans, saying that he believed this would be the fulfillment of his "Bread of Life" vision. Wm. Branham still hasn't made mention of receiving a visit from an angel. A few weeks after Betty's healing, Wm. Branham returned to St. Louis for a healing campaign (June 14, 1946). Dates and events surrounding the St. Louis campaign indicate that it was held in June 1945 (note that in this booklet, WWII gas rationing was still in effect--gas rationing was immediately discontinued when when WWII ended in 1945; Billy Paul was 9 years old at the time [he was born in September 1935, making him 9 years old in June 1945 and 10 years old in June 1946]; the days of the week correspond to dates in 1945, not 1946). The St. Louis healing campaign was conducted in June 1946.XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
In a sermon preached in 1958, Wm. Branham learns that Betty is in the meeting and discovers that it has been 13 years since she was healed in St. Louis. This would place the time of her healing and the beginning of Wm. Branham's healing campaigns in 1945, not 1946:
Good evening, friends. Very happy to be back tonight in the service of the Lord God, and trusting His blessings upon the services tonight. I was glad to see tonight Brother Robert Daugherty back in the room there. It was at Brother Daugherty that I--sponsored my first campaign. And I remember going to him... There's still some people setting here that help me get over there; and Brother Creech here, I think's one of them. ...
You know, Brother Robert, I believe it'd been better if I'd just kept it that way. 'Course, there'd probably wouldn't been as many saved, but just stay with one case till it's over, till you know. And the next day, I guess it was along two or three o'clock in the afternoon (or that same day, I don't remember now.), that I was setting in a car outside of the parsonage, and his father was there, and I was by myself. I'd felt the Spirit of the Lord come, and I went outside the parsonage and set out there. And little Betty was just like a wild person, just screaming. And doctors could do nothing for her. And mother and dad, both, they looked very bad; they'd set up days and weeks with her. And there a vision came just before the car, in front of the car. And I saw the vision and run in and told Brother Robert and them just what to do and the girl would be well.
I suppose you said she'd be here tomorrow night, didn't you, Brother Robert, to testify? So now that's been some fourteen years ago, I guess, twelve--fourteen years ago [someone says, "thirteen now"]--thirteen years ago, and she's a healthy, fine looking young woman. Will be here tomorrow night, the Lord willing... Divine healing lasts just as long as faith lasts (That's right.), just as long as faith last.
But From the Beginning it Was Not So, Ocotober 2, 1958 (tape #58-1002)
So why did Gordon Lindsay report in his book that 1946 was the year the angel appeared, followed shortly by Betty Daugherty's healing and the subsequent healing campaigns? The simple answer is that's what William Branham told him. Mr. Lindsay published A Man Sent From God in 1950. As early as 1947, William Branham had already been claiming to have been visited and commissioned by an angel. However, in perhaps the earliest recorded account we have of his claim, Mr. Branham alludes to the angel's visit and commission as taking place in 1945, not 1946:
A little over two years ago now [that would be 1945!--John Kennah], I was sitting in the room...
And just above me hung a great Star. And the Light was kind of a, more of a green, between green and yellow, shining on the floor. And coming walking through this Light, came a Man that looked like, as I said before, would weigh two hundred pounds, a huge Man...
And He said, "Fear not. I'm sent from the Presence of God to tell you that this peculiar life of yours, peculiar birth... [Blank.spot.on.tape--Ed.]... a gift of Divine healing to the peoples of the world." And said, "If you'll be sincere, and will get the people to believe you, there will be no disease stand before your prayer, not even to cancer." And He said, "It'll come to pass that you'll tell the people their diseases from a vibration over your hand. Then if you will be reverent long, then you'll tell the people the sins of their life, and the things that they have done."
The Angel and His Commission, November 2, 1947 (tape #47-1102)
Another point is that Gordon Lindsay reports that the weather was unseasonably rainy during the healing campaigns in St. Louis. I contacted the Missouri climatologist and requested precipitation data for St. Louis during the months of June 1945 and 1946. Although he had no data for St. Louis, he provided me with information for St. Charles, a suburb of St. Louis. From this data, I learned that June 1946 was actually unseasonably dry! Between the dates of June 14 and June 24, 1946 (10 days), there were 8 days of below average rainfall, 6 of which no rain fell at all. It only rained on the 15th, 16th and the 20th. The only day of which the rain might be officially classified as "heavy" (more than .3 inches per hour) would have been on June 20th, which received 1.5 inches for the entire day.
June 1945 is a different story. Rainfall was nearly twice as heavy as normal (June normal rainfall is 3.76 inches). June 1945 received 6.57 inches. Between June 14-24, it rained 6 days. Out of the 6, four were unseasonably heavy, receiving more than .12 inches for the day. The amount of rain that fell during those 11 days accounted for 2.76 of the total 6.57 inches for the month.
Again, Gordon Lindsay seems to have reported that these events occurred in 1946 based only upon William Branham's claims. The facts suggest they occurred in 1945.
One might ask, "If the healing campaign in ‘I Was Not Disobedient Unto the Heavenly Vision’ took place in 1945, why did Robert Daugherty, in his testimony on pages 86- 87 of A Man Sent From God, claim that Wm. Branham held the revival in St. Louis in 1946?"
In the late 1940's, William Branham wrote and distributed a booklet called, "Jesus Christ the Same Yesterday, Today and Forever." In this booklet, Wm. Branham includes the testimony of Robert Daugherty. Rev. Daugherty's testimony which appears in Wm. Branham's booklet is nearly identical to the one that appears on pages 86-87 of A Man Sent From God. It is clear that the later version that appeared in Gordon Lindsay's book had been edited, since there are were a few changes made. The most notable difference between the two versions is in the ending. In the first version of Rev. Daugherty's testimony in "Jesus Christ the Same..." (page 14) he says,
That has been about 10 months ago. Our little Betty is now in perfect health and is as fat as she can be. I will be glad to write to anyone in question of her healing, or any of the healings that took place during rhe revival which Bro. Branham held here in St. Louis in 1945.
The healing that took place in the St. Louis revival is found in the book entitled "Heavenly Vision," by Bro. Branham. Be sure to read it.
Rev. Robert Dautherty, 2009 Gano Ave. St. Louis, Mo.
Rev. Daugherty originally testified that the St. Louis meetings were held in 1945, not 1946 as is reported in Gordon Lindsay's book! In another testimony in "Jesus Christ the Same..." (page 16), one person makes clear that Wm. Branham had already begun his healing ministry as early as June 10, 1945. Once again, we find that Gordon Lindsay was dependant upon unverified information he received from Wm. Branham when writing his book. The testimony of Rev. Daugherty which was published in A Man Sent From God was clearly revised to reflect Wm. Branham's later claim that he began his healing revival as a result of his angelic commission which he said occurred on May 7, 1946.
In summary: It’s clear that in the account given in "I Was Not Disobedient...", Wm. Branham claims his ministry started in 1945 as a result of his obedience to his "Bread of Life" vision. Not once does he tell of being commissioned by an angel.
However, in A Man Sent From God, and every subsequent account thereafter, Mr. Branham claims he began his ministry in 1946 after an angel commissioned him to do so. There is no mention of the vision of the "Bread of Life." In my opinion, it couldn’t be more obvious that Mr. Branham's testimony of having been visited and commissioned by an angel to begin a ministry of Divine Healing was developed long after he had already begun his worldwide ministry. The two different accounts of how his ministry began can't both be true. Are either of them true?
I was reading William Branham's testimony about how the angel came to him, and in the definitive account which appears in the sermon, "How The Angel Came To Me, And His Commission" (tape #55-0117), I found something quite interesting. Just before he went into the woods where he was to meet the angel that would commission him to start his healing campaigns, he said to his wife,
"I'm going to my place in the woods. I got about fifteen dollars; you take care of Billy." Billy was a little bitty boy then, a little bitty fellow. I said, "You--you take... That's enough for you and Billy to live on awhile. Call them up and tell them I'll--I may be back tomorrow, and I may not never be back. If I ain't back in the next five days, put a man on in my place." And I said, "Meda, I'll never come out of that woods until God promises me He will take that thing away from me and never let it happen again."
The same scene is described in Gordon Lindsay's book, A Man Sent From God (1950) on page 76:
...My wife came from the house frightened, and asked me what was wrong. Trying to get hold of myself, I sat down and told her that after all these twenty odd years of being conscious of this strange feeling, the time had come when I had to find out what it was all about. The crisis had come! I told her and my child good-bye, and warned her that if I did not come back in a few days, perhaps I might never return.
Now, here's the interesting part. Rebekah Branham-Smith, WMB's oldest daughter, was born on March 21, 1946. As you know, my contention is that WMB really started his healing campaigns in 1945, not 1946 as WMB has claimed since 1950. If WMB's crisis point came in May 1946, then Rebekah would have been a month and a half old. Yet in neither of the above two accounts does he acknowledge that Rebekah had yet been born. This is further indication that WMB's first account of how his ministry began in 1945 is the most accurate, and that an angel did not commission him to pray for the sick on May 7, 1946, as he claimed in later years.
Thanks to Phil Rickerby for the research he provided in a report he wrote and shared with me which got this topic started.
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (August 17, 2003), Click Here.
For more details concerning other serious discrepancies concerning the start of Wm. Branham's worldwide ministry and his Angelic Commission, Click on the following links:Discrepancies in the Angel's alleged commission: William Branham's "conversion" and the angel's subsequent visit and statements seem more similar to experiences by other recent false prophets than to biblical events.
Discrepancies in the actual location of the Angel's visit to Wr. Branham: Did it occur in a cabin or a cave?
Discrepancies in the Date of the Angel's Visit: William Branham was often unclear about the date and even the year of the Angel's commission.
Followers of William Branham's Message recall his testimony of when he was commissioned to start his healing campaigns by an angel in 1946. He has told his followers that he was praying in a secret cave* in the woods when the angel appeared to him (Pearry Green, The Acts of the Prophet, first and second editions, pages 67-68). Rebekah Branham-Smith reported the discovery of the cave in her article, "The Mystery at Fourteen Mile Creek" (see Believers International's supplemental publication, "Post Scripts", July 1990). But is this cave really the location of WMB's supposed meeting with his angel in 1946?
Was the Angel’s Visit in a Cave or a Cabin?
In a sermon he preached in 1955 ("How the Angel Came to Me and His Commission," tape #55-0117), WMB describes the incident as having occurred in "a little old dilapidated cabin", not a cave. He tells of pacing the floor, then sitting down on "a little old box of a thing." As he sat, he said that he saw a light begin to flicker in the room as the angel approached. He described the room as having wooden boards on the floor, and an old drum stove setting in the corner--not quite the description of a cave.
So, which was it? A cabin in the woods, or a secret cave? Or did the event happen at all? The answer to this embarrassing inconsistency in WMB's account of how his ministry began eludes Message believers to this day.
* "Well, one night up yonder in Green's Mill, Indiana, to a cave where I was at in a place, the Angel of the Lord appeared and said, 'You're to go pray for sick people.' And told me what would take place. He said, 'Do not fear. I will be with you.'"
("The Pillar Of Fire," sermon #53-0509)
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (May 1, 2001), Click Here.
Angel to William Branham: "Don’t Defile Your Body in Any Way"
William Branham often told about how his angel appeared to him as a young boy in the form of a whirlwind in a tree. Mr. Branham said that the angel told him in a human voice, "Don’t you never drink, smoke, or defile your body in any way. There’ll be a work for you to do when you get older." Mr. Branham has testified that the angel supernaturally intervened when Mr. Branham tried to disobey this instruction by trying to smoke a cigarette or take a drink. But Mr. Branham’s angel apparently forgot that he also instructed young Branham not to "defile his body in any way," because he did not stop Mr. Branham when he went into prize fighting (a time in his life that he seemed quite proud of, saying,"I used to be a boxer. I had the undefeated title of bantam weight championship of the three states."
Expectation, Wood River, IL, 1954 (tape #54-0220)
One has only to look at the present condition of Muhammad Ali to see how boxing can defile a person's physical body and mental health (Ali has Parkinson's Syndrome which may have been induced by his boxing career). It seems odd that an angel from God would prevent Mr. Branham from smoking or drinking, but when it came to boxing, he not only allowed Mr. Branham to pursue this as a career, he never told Mr. Branham that this violated his instruction to keep from defiling his body in any way. This could not have been an angel sent from the Lord.
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (January 4, 2003), Click Here.
Evil Spirit Flies into William Branham’s Ear
The William Branham Evangelistic Association booklet, Twentieth Century Prophet, describes a vision that William Branham once had (page 44):"...It seemed that he [Mr. Branham] appeared upon a green grassy hill, and just in front of him lay an old-fashioned four-cornered candy jar. Inside the jar was a large tobacco moth or fly -- trying to free itself. He started to turn to his right, and there was the mighty angel standing looking at him. The angel said, "See what I have to show you." Then Brother Branham saw an arm cast a stone, and break the candy jar. The tobacco moth tried to fly away. But it could not get off the ground; its body was too heavy for its short wings.
Then out of the moth came swarms of flies, and one of the flies flew in Brother Branham’s ear. The angel said unto him "The flies which you have seen represent evil spirits, such as spirits of divination and fortune-telling."
Then he warned, "Be careful." This was repeated three times. After that Brother Branham came to himself."
It is interesting to note that the evil spirit that flew into Mr. Branham’s ear never flew back out. Could this be a symbolic explanation for Mr. Branham’s many false prophecies and unbiblical teachings?
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (January 24, 2013), Click Here.
William Branham, Born April 6, 1909 . . . or was he?
Most bios of William Branham indicate that he was born on April 6, 1909. He has told the story more than once that when he was a young man an astrologer approached him to tell him he was born under a sign. She told him, "You was born on April the 6th at five o'clock in the morning in 1909." "That's right," he replied (see, "Early Experiences," July 13, 1952, message #52-0713A). However, WMB has also said on other occasions that he didn't know when he was born:About four weeks ago... No, beg your pardon, about seven weeks ago, I'd come in off of a meeting, and I was laying in my bed; and I'd woke up that morning, and I raised up, kindy put my hands... Which I sleep like that, behind my head, and laid against the foot board, or the headboard of the bed. And then, I said, "Well," I said, "honey, you awake?" to my wife, and she was sleeping away. And I said... I laid there a few moments, and I said, "Well, Bill, you're fifty years old." Best I know, I was born in Kentucky where they don't have a birth records. And you know what my birth mark is, birth record in Kentucky? The year the old stump blowed away up over on the hill. And that's all they knowed. They say, "When was that child born?" "Tomato picking time." "What tomato picking time? When was this one born?" "Corn cutting time." "What corn cutting time?" Now, that--that was the birth record up in the mountains of Kentucky. So I don't know how old I am, but anyhow, I--I'm--I'm ever bit of that. So then, a--so then when... That's what my mother told me, and I think she'd be pretty close to right.So, if WMB didn't know when he was born, how could he say the astrologer was right when she gave him the date of April 6, 1909? By and large, WMB seems to have adopted this date as his birthdate even though he had used several different dates at various times in his life. In his book, Legend of the Fall, Peter Duyzer cites several examples of official documents signed by WMB which give conflicting birthdates. In a discussion we had on this topic at our forum, Peter offered a couple of more examples of where WMB really didn't know when he was born:
("Jehovah-Jireh #3," August 3, 1960, message #60-0803)51-0501 Exhortation On Healing, "I was a little boy born in that little log cabin forty-two years ago the sixth day of April according to the Kentucky count...There's no doctors...The year the old snag blowed away upon the hill, that's the year that I was born. My brother was born at tomato picking time, if you know when that was. Why... And so that was the count...That's awful to say that, but it's true…But that's the way it was…"
Julius Stadsklev, a close friend of WMB wrote in his book, "William Branham was born on a farm near Berksville, Kentucky…No one is sure of the exact date because no birth records were kept in Kentucky in those days. However it is believed he was born the sixth day of April, 1909 and weighed only five pounds. His mother was 15 years of age and his father was 18." Julius Stadsklev, A Prophet Visits South Africa, p. 13
(see post #1220.36)
So if he really didn't know when he was born, why would WMB settle on April 6, 1909 as his birthdate throughout much of his ministry? Was it because it was the date the astrologer picked for him? Maybe that, combined with the fact that a number of other notable events in history occured on April 6. In his book, A Man Sent From God, Gordon Lindsay makes an interesting comment:On April 6, 1950, at three o'clock in the afternoon, the [Branham] party boarded the large overseas airliner, Flagship Scotland, and took off for London, England. It was on April 6, 1909, that William Branham was born. April 6, 1917, was the day that America relinquished her historical isolationism and entered the European War. Historians tell us that it was on April 6, in the year 30 A.D. that Christ died on the Cross. Perhaps the members of the party might be excused for thinking that April 6, is a day of significance. (A Man Sent From God, p.208)
In 2007, a member of our forum pointed out that WMB once said that he was born the day after Alexander Dowie died, which would have been March 10, 1907! (see post #'s 2260.17 and 1220.4)
Early in 2011, Peter Duyzer announced at our forum that he had discovered documented evidence that WMB was actually born on April 8, 1908 and that the 1920 U.S. Census also concurred the year of his birth to be 1908 (see post #’s 42 & 53). In his book, Legend of the Fall (2014), Peter provided a photograph of WMB’s signed application for marriage license indicating his birthdate as April 8, 1908 (page 31). In footnote #15 (p. 34), Peter states that the U.S. Federal Census taken in 1920 showes that WMB was 12 years old. This would indicate his year of birth to be 1908. Incidentally, Peter mentions on page 31 of his book that the census indicated his year of birth to have been 1907, which is apparently a typo. In footnote #15, as previously mentioned, Peter deduces WMB's year of birth based on the 1920 census as 1908.
As with so many other aspects of his life, William Branham seemed to fabricate significance even to the date of his birth. He chose April 6, 1909 because of the importance of the date, not because of any facts. We know that because he admitted he really didn't know when he was born. So when was he born? Nobody knows.
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (August 24, 2003), Click Here.
Pillar of Fire Descends in Switzerland
William Branham was prone to attributing photographic anomalies to manifestations of the Holy Spirit. One such example can be seen in a series of photographs taken in 1955 at a breakfast meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland, where Mr. Branham was a guest speaker (see, Footprints on the Sands of Time, pages 566-567). He describes the incident surrounding the photos in the following sermon:...And in Germany they said they wanted to see if they could take the picture. And they stood there, and we got a great breakfast where them Dutch Reform, and Lutheran, and all kinds of ministers, and they was questioning me. And this German said, "Can I take the pictures?" (At Lausanne.) One of those great big German cameras with the Poloroid. I said, "He might permit it, sir. I do not know. He did in America two or three times." I said, "He might do it. I don't know." So it... And I said, "If He starts..."
He said, "Can I take the picture?"
I said, "It isn't a flash?"
He said, "No, sir, it isn't a flash. It's just a still picture; they don't have to have a flash."
I said, "All right, 'cause I don't want to see a flash, and don't take pictures while it's going on, 'cause it's a Light Itself..."
...That big German camera taken the picture just as fast as it could. And that German rushed right down, and put them in the acid, and brought it forth. Here was the Holy Ghost, the Pillar of Fire, coming down. Here's where It anointed, and here's where It went back.
We Would See Jesus, Dallas, TX, June 12, 1958
In another sermon, he says that the camera shooting the pictures was stationary throughout the breakfast meeting:The Angel of the Lord always appears to me on the right hand side, every time, and there the... to--to prove that it's true, there goes the Angel of the Lord off on the right hand side, just exactly. And here's a picture afterwards, that there was nothing left in the building. And we got, we got around twenty something pictures between these two things, and... the camera stationary setting at the same place, and nothing at all showed any other wise.Below are four photos from that meeting. A close examination of the photos will reveal the following observations:
Faith in Action, Chicago, IL, October 3, 1955
Photo #1- (Left) The room is lit only by sunlight from the windows. It appears that the photographer took the photo while standing on a chair because, from the photo's perspective, he is above the people who are standing in the room. No flash was used here.
Photo #2- (Right) The photographer takes this photo with a flash from the same perspective as photo 1. It appears that the flash is reflected back from a glass window behind Wm. Branham, or perhaps from a large mirror on the wall in the next room behind Mr. Branham.
Photo #3- (Left) A second flash photo, only this time it appears that the photographer isn't standing quite as high as the previous photos. Look at the portraits that hang in the room behind Mr. Branham. They seem to get lower as the progression of photos continues, indicating that the camera was lower when it took each photo. This explains why the camera flash also appears lower in the window behind Mr. Branham.
Photo #4- (Right) Here, everyone is now sitting. The photographer appears to have gotten off the chair and is standing on the ground when taking this picture. Consequently, the reflected flash is at the height of Mr. Branham's head.
It is clear that Mr. Branham was either mistaken or deliberately misleading when he said that the photographer used no flash in the photos. It is also clear that the camera was not stationary during the series of photos as he said. The descending light is obviously a reflection of the camera flash off of a window or mirror directly behind Mr. Branham.
From our discussion forum, Lee (aka Pencilsmudge) offers a fascinating illustration to a forum member referred to as "Numbers" (Used by permission). Lee writes:
The photographer promised no flash. So he went against what he'd said and decided to use a flash?
I don't know if the photographer promised not to use a flash. I do know he used a flash (or other photography light). Look at the light/shadow patterns. The one photo of the four that has the dark shadows is the way it is because the light is coming from the right side of the picture (predominantly)...through the window. Natural light. The other three have almost no cast shadows but everyone is lit from the camera side (our point of view). this would only be because the light in the photo/room is coming from where the camera is...the same light being reflected in the glass at the back of the room.
In the pictures the portraits on the far back wall would appear to be HIGHER if the camera was in a lower position.
Higher is relative, Numbers. Yes, the pictures would be higher in relation to the camera, but not in relation to everything else. As our POV (point of view) moves lower, EVERYthing moves higher in relation to the POV. But... the important thing to remember is the things closest to our POV will move higher faster, while those things further away will move higher slower in relation to the closer things. This would mean the picture/painting in the far room through the glass will move higher in our POV, but will appear lower than the window frames, which are closer to us and therefore moving higher faster as our POV changes.
I put togethre a rough diagram hours ago (long before reading your post this afternoon) of the perspective in the photos. I'm going to try and post them with this so you can see.
If you ever did perspective drawings in grade school art class, you know that the horizon line is also the "eye sight" line -- it always corresponds to the eye's level. The horizon line moves with our POV. The lines moving away from us in the perspective drawing ( which are parallel to one another) will all converge at one point on the horizon line -- called "the vanishing point."
See this crude example I made in Photoshop a little while ago (click to see it larger):
The blue line is the Horizon line, the red the converging parallel lines,
all meeting at the vanishing point.
When we point a camera, the exact spot the center of the lense points to is the vanishing point.
Now look at the photos (thumbnail links to larger images):
The horizon line in each photo is the blue line. I found it roughly by tracing the lines moving away from us in perspective (faint red). In each photo, the lines converge at one point - just like the perspective illustration. In each photo case, they converge right where the "orb" is. The orb is the vanishing point in each photo. That means it is the point where the camera is looking most directly. Why would the orb consistently be found right at the POV vanishing point, Numbers? Because it is the reflection of the light (flash or flood) coming from right where the camera is.
In the pictures the portraits on the far back wall would appear to be HIGHER if the camera was in a lower position.
Look at the portrait/painting in the far room through the glass. Do you see where the horizon line passes through the painting in each of the three orb photos? In the first, the horizon line passes through the painting halfway it's height. In the second, just slightly lower; the third, the horizon line is right at the painting's bottom. If you see how the horizon line moves faster through the window panes, you'll see what I meant earlier that things move up and down faster the closer they are to the POV.
Numbers, it is without any doubt a light source coming from the area of the cameraman.
God bless you
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (September 29, 2007), Click Here.
Pillar of Fire Photo, Houston, TX In his book All Things Are Possible, David Harrell describes this 1950 photo of William Branham as perhaps the most famous picture of the 1947-1958 healing revival. Mr. Branham’s team had the photograph examined for authenticity by George J. Lacy, a professional examiner of questioned documents. Mr. Branham said the following about the photo:And George J. Lacy, the head of the FBI, of finger print and documents took from California and came to the Shell building in there and examined the picture, and said, "Mr. Branham, I've been your critic, and I said it was psychology." But said, "The mechanical eye of this camera won't take psychology. The light struck the lens." And so, you have the picture now. And one of them's in Washington, D.C., in the religious Hall of Art, with a note under it, "The only supernatural being was ever photographed in the history of the world." And now, then if you're ever through there, stop in and see it.There are several problems with Mr. Branham’s assessment of the photo:
Show Us the Father, Tucson, AZ, (tape #63-0606)
- George J. Lacy was a freelance examiner of questioned documents and was never on the payroll at the FBI. A letter I received from the FBI, dated June 5, 2002, confirmed that Mr. Lacy was never an employee of the FBI. At the time the photograph was taken, he was working closely with the Harris County Sheriff’s Department in Houston, Texas.
- Contrary to Mr. Branham’s claims, Mr. Lacy’s report does not indicate that the light above Mr. Branham’s head was supernatural in origin. His conclusion was simply that the light was the result of a light source actually being photographed and not the result of a double exposure or any other photographic anomaly (to read the text of Mr. Lacy’s report, Click Here. To see a reproduction of his actual report, Click Here).
- Contrary to Mr. Branham’s claim, this photograph did not hang in Washington D.C. in the religious Hall of Art. In fact, there was no religious Hall of Art then, and as far as I could learn, there still is not. I have been unable to determine that this photograph has ever been publicly displayed in any exhibit in Washington D.C. While I attended the Message church in Tucson, my pastor searched long and hard for any display of the photo in Washington D.C. His conclusion was that Mr. Branham probably saw a vision of it hanging there in the future and supposed that it was hanging there at the time he made the statement.
- From our forum, Lee (aka Pencilsmudge) makes the following observation (used by permission):"If the pillar was truly a light above the head of WMB - a light which affected the film on the camera - why doesn't the photo look more like the version I edited on the right?..."--Lee
Although it is not beyond possibility that the light may have truly been supernatural in origin, it is impossible to conclude that the light was not the result of the overhead lighting system or some other light source at the Houston Coliseum.
Incidentally, back in 2002 I located a photograph of the Houston Mavericks basketball team taken in 1969 at the original Houston Coliseum (which was razed in 1998) where William Branham's "pillar of fire" photo was taken (see photo below). Notice the similarity between the shapes of the overhead lights in the stadium and WMB's "pillar of fire" photo.
Photo obtained from "Remember the ABA: Houston Mavericks"
Below left is a photo of the Beatles when they performed at the Sam Houston Coliseum in 1965. To the far right of the photo can be seen a light very similar in size, shape, and angle to the "Pillar of Fire" photo. See close-up on bottom right photo.
Photo obtained from iOffer.com
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (January 29, 2007), Click Here.
Man Attempts to Expose William Branham as Fraud
William Branham sometimes warned his listeners against testing the authenticity of his gifts. He frequently gave testimony of a man who entered one of his prayer lines in an attempt to expose him as a fraud by writing fictitious illnesses on his prayer card. He expected Mr. Branham to identify the illnesses that were written on the card, thereby proving that Mr. Branham was getting his information by "telepathy" rather than from the Lord. If this incident indeed happened, it is not on any of his existing sermon recordings. Various accounts of this incident can be read in the following sermons by William Branham:
Mr. Branham said that when it came time for the man to be prayed for, the Lord revealed to him the man's intentions by way of a vision. Mr. Branham than pronounced that the man would receive those very illnesses he wrote on his prayer card for his attmepted ploy against a prophet of the Lord. During the course of his ministry, Mr. Branham told conflicting accounts of what happened during this incident. The types of inconsistencies which appear in these various accounts are not what one would expect from someone recalling a true event as significant as this was to Mr. Branham. For example, in the first known account of the incident (1950), Mr. Branham makes no mention of the man being cursed with the diseases he wrote on his card. In fact, Mr. Branham said that the man asked for and found forgiveness for his actions against the prophet. The following are several different versions Mr. Branham gave of what happened to the man for attempting to expose him as a fraud:
- Moses’ Commission, January 10, 1950 (tape #50-0110)
- God Commissioning Moses the Prophet, May 8, 1953(tape #53-0508)
- South Africa Testimony, September 2, 1954 (tape #54-0902)
- Blind Bartimaeus, April 7, 1956 (tape #56-0407)
- Jehovah-Jireh, December 9, 1956 (tape #56-1209E)
- Blind Bartimaeus, January 27, 1957(tape #57-0127E)
- Thirsting For Life, June 30, 1957(tape #57-0630)
- Queen of Sheba, February 8, 1958 (tape #58-0208)
- Christ Outside the Door, March 30, 1958 (tape #58-0330E)
- Jehovah-Jireh, February 12, 1961 (tape #61-0212M)
- Have Not I Sent Thee?, January 24, 1962 (tape #62-0124)
- Three Kinds of Believers, November 24, 1963 (tape #63-1124E)
There are also many inconsistencies regarding certain details in Mr. Branham's vision, such as the number of people that appeared in it, the types of clothes they wore, and what the green cloth was (was it a tablecloth or the woman's scarf?). These inconsistencies are not characteristic of someone recalling an actual event. Even though the details were different every time Mr. Branham told this story, he always represented it as true and accurate.
- The man received the diseases that he wrote on his card and was still suffering from them (1953).
- The man had died from his diseases (1954).
- The man was bedfast "to this day" (1956).
- The man ran screaming from the auditorium when Mr. Branham publicly exposed his plan (1956).
- The man died a year after the incident (January 1957).
- The man was still in "serious condition" (June 1957).
- The man died 6 months after the incident from cancer (1958).
- The man was carried from the auditorium paralyzed and is still paralyzed (1958--note that in 1956 Mr. Branham said he ran screaming from the building).
- The man died six weeks after Mr. Branham exposed him (1961). [Originally, I had indicated that he died in sixty seconds, which is what the original Voice of God Recordings' database had. In their latest database they made a correction which I verified with the actual recording. Instead of "sixty seconds," WMB actually said, "six weeks afterwards." Some Message Websites still contain the error. See Jehovah-Jireh, paragraph E-26--JK]
- The man died six weeks after the meeting (1962).
Mr. Branham has made these types of varying "embellishments" so often throughout his ministry that one should not rely on his statements without independent, coroborating substantiation. However pure his motives might have been, the veracity of Mr. Branham's uncororborated testimonies is at best questionable.
To read the actual quotes from the the sermons listed above, Click Here.
Thinking Man's FilterDid William Branham really have literal conversations with the Lord as he led us to believe, or did he only experience an overactive imagination? In the following quotes, Mr. Branham relates how he was hunting in the woods when the Lord led him to a cigarette pack which lay on the ground:So I turned around and went down by the river, and I thought, "I'll go down here and hide till they get done so I can get out." And on the road down, I happened to draw... My attention was drawn to look over to my right side, and as I did, there laid a empty cigarette package, where one of them had throwed down in all the running of the--when the squirrels were going through the bushes. And I picked up this certain cigarette pack and was look... I never picked it up (I beg your pardon.); I looked down at it. I didn't pick it up, 'cause I don't like the smell of the things to begin with. And I looked down there, and it's a--a certain tobacco company that I guess I shouldn't call their name, but you'll know. It said on there, "A thinking man's filter and a smoking man's taste ."Did the Holy Spirit tell Mr. Branham to pick up the cigarette pack or not? Did he obey the Lord’s instruction to pick it up, or did he just leave it on the ground? This would seem to be a minor contradiction, but Mr. Branham asks his followers to believe that during this episode, the Lord actually had a brief conversation with him, telling him that his next sermon would come from that cigarette pack:
A Thinking Man’s Filter, August 22, 1965 (tape #65-0822E)
I was going, walking through the woods; I was squirrel hunting (this fall) and I looked down. And, of course, I can't call the cigarette company. You know it. And there laid a--a cigarette pack laying there. And I just passed by it, looking for--in the woods. And I seen that package laying there, and I looked back again, it said, "A thinking man's filter, a smoking man's taste ." I just started walking on through the woods. And Holy Spirit said, "Turn and pick that up." I reached down and picked it up, "A thinking man's filter, a smoking man's taste ."
Leadership, December 7, 1965 (tape #65-1207)I started walking on down a little further in the woods, and Something attracted me, "Go back to that cigarette pack." I thought, "Heavenly Father, I'm going down here to that tree where those squirrels was spoke into existence by You one morning. Why would You call me back?" And Something said, "You've got a sermon coming for Sunday. Your text is wrote on it." I thought, "On a cigarette pack?" I went back. And I begin to think, "A thinking man's filter," what a deception that is. If a man was a thinking man, he wouldn't smoke at all. But, you see, people swallow that.One would think that after this exchange with the Lord, Mr. Branham couldn’t have been more confident that this sermon was inspired by God. However, at the end of the sermon, A Thinking Man’s Filter, Mr. Branham displays a profound doubt that the Lord really led him to preach this sermon from the likes of a cigarette package, even asking forgiveness if the text of his sermon was sacrilegious:
God’s Power to Transform, September 11, 1965 (tape #65-0911)I pray for myself with them, that, Lord Jesus, that You'll hold Your Filter. And if I'm saying anything sacrilegious, Lord, I--in my heart I don't know it. I pray that if it's wrong for me to take Your Word and use such a thing as that, You forgive me for it. But, Lord, I thought when You spoke to me there in the woods, You know the time and the morning, it just--I couldn't get it off my mind. I accepted it as coming from You.Mr. Branham’s urge to read what was written on a discarded carton of cigarettes in the woods later evolved into a detailed conversation with God in which he was told to use the slogan from the cigarette pack as the text for his next sermon. At the end of the sermon, Mr. Branham expressed concern that the use of the slogan, "Thinking Man’s Filter," may have been sacrilegious, even though he earlier said God instructed him to to use it. Was Mr. Branham always as sure that his "revelations" were from the Lord as he led us to believe? Or was the manner in which he received them more similar to what we’ve read here?
A Thinking Man’s Filter, August 22, 1965 (tape #65-0822E)For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?
I Corinthians 14:8
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (December 14, 2002), Click Here.
Light Over 1933 Baptism
I was baptizing down on the river, my first converts, at the Ohio River, and the seventeenth person I was baptizing, as I started to baptize, then I said, "Father, as I baptize him with water, You baptize him with the Holy Spirit." I started to--to put him under the water.
And just then a whirl come from the heavens above, and here come that Light, shining down. Hundreds and hundreds of people on the bank, right at two o'clock in the afternoon, in June. And It hung right over where I was at. A Voice spoke from there, and said, "As John the Baptist was sent for the forerunner of the first coming of Christ, you've got a--have a Message that will bring forth the forerunning of the second coming of Christ."--William Branham
How the Angel Came To Me, January 17, 1955 (tape #55-0117)_
The first recorded instance we have in which Wm. Branham indicates that a voice prophesied from the mysterious light during this event was actually in 1952. What most people don’t know is that previous to 1952 (19 years after the incident), we have no record that he ever mentioned such a prophecy at the time of this event. For example, in his first recorded account of this baptismal service, WMB said:
And I looked, coming right down out of the heavens, out of a place about as big as this platform, where the blue skies churning like waters... Coming right down out of there came a big thing, like a star, whirling around, going, whew [Brother Branham illustrates--Ed.], coming right down visibly before the eyes. Moved right down, looked like a star at a distance. When it got close, It looked like a milling fire of Light, moving right down and set over where I was. Then went right back up into the heavens again. The waters let up.
God Revealing Himself to His People, August 13, 1950 (tape #50-0813E)
So where did the prophetic statement come from that is so familiar to Message believers today? C. Douglas Weaver made an intersting discovery from Gordon Lindsay’s book, A Man Sent From God (published in 1950) which I believe provides the answer. Weaver points out that on page 43 of Lindsay’s book, Wm. Branham gives an account of this incident but didn't mention a voice with the message comparing John the Baptist’s ministry with his own. But later in the book, we learn something very interesting. On page 105, Lindsay describes a prophecy given at a Branham campaign which said of Branham, "...that as John the Baptist was sent as a forerunner of the Lord's first coming, so was He sending forth this evangelist and others like him to move the people and prepare them for His second coming." (see The Healer-Prophet, William Marrion Branham, 1st Edition, pages 28-29) It was only after 1950 when A Man Sent From God was published that Wm. Branham began to attribute the nearly identical prophecy from his campaign to a supernatural voice which allegedly spoke to him during the 1933 Ohio River baptismal service.
As for whether or not the supernatural element of the 1933 baptism incident even occurred, I have found no extant evidence to support that it did. William Branham claimed that local newspapers carried the story, but even Voice of God Recordings Inc. admits that there are no known existing copies of such articles (they say the newspaper company which supposedly carried the story, The Louisville Herald Post, went out of business and all back issues were destroyed in the 1937 Ohio River flood). Could it be that the supernatural light was nothing more than the sun reflecting off the wings of an airplane, and the loud sound the roar of its engine, perhaps a rare occurance in those days? Who can say? The answer itself may have been provided in the newspaper article which is no longer to be found.
In my opinion, Wm. Branham's claim that a voice spoke to him on the Ohio River in 1933 saying, "As John the Baptist was sent forth to forerun the first coming of Christ, so will your Message forerun the second coming of Christ," is doubtful. It is apparent that he borrowed the prophecy from Gordon Lindsay's book in order to further the perception that he was the sole prophet to our day who was sent to usher in the second coming of Christ.
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (April 14, 2004), Click Here.
The Controversy Between "You" and "You're Message"
When I was in the Message, I know there was somewhat of a controversy over this statement allegedly made during WMB's 1933 baptism at the Ohio River. My then pastor, Pearry Green, always said that many people would quote the voice as saying, "your Message will forerun the second coming of Christ," but that WMB told him personally that the voice actually said, "you will forerun the second coming of Christ." I decided to look at my copies of the first two editions of Green's book, The Acts of the Prophet, to see what he had to say about it.
First, in the chapter titled, "Voice of the Sign,"on page 29 of both the 1969 and 1993 editions, Pearry Green recounts something WMB personally told him about that voice:
". . . I will not deny what that Voice said on the Ohio River in 1933!" He continued, "Brother Pearry, I don't say anything about it in public. People don't understand what a prophet is. But when that Light came whirling down out of Heaven, and those people sitting on the bank saw it, there was a Voice that spoke from it, just as It did to Paul on the road to Damascus. The Voice said, 'As John the Baptist was sent to forerun the first coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, so are you sent to forerun His second coming.'"
Next, in the chapter titled, "1933," on pages 46-47 of both editions, Green again quotes what the voice said to WMB during the baptism:
Just as with Saul, a Voice spoke from the Light. These were the words, "As John the Baptist was sent to forerun the first coming of the Lord, so are you sent to forerun His second coming..."
Some have thought the words spoken by the Voice were, "...your message will forerun His second coming." But how can there be a message without a messenger? The message is thoroughly identified with the messenger, as it was with John the Baptist. Brother Branham was asked, "Did the voice say you or your message will forerun the second coming?" The answer was found as he had it carved on the inside of the door of his new home in Tucson, "As John the Baptist was sent to forerun the first coming of the Lord, so are you sent to forerun His second coming."
Now, here is something very interesting. In Pearry Green's 2011 revised and updated version of his book, now titled, William Branham: The Acts of a Prophet, he made a few changes. On page 62, you will find a revised and updated quotation of what WMB told him:
"Brother Green, I don't say anything about it publicly, because people don't understand what a prophet is. But, I will not deny what that angel of God said on the Ohio River in 1933," which was his commission, "As John the Baptist was sent to forerun the first coming of the Lord, so are you sent with a message to forerun His second coming [emphasis added]."
Pearry Green also included a revised and updated account of the passage I quoted above from pages 46-47 of his original book. In the 2011 version, on page 117, he now says this about the voice of the baptism:
From that Pillar of Fire, a voice said, "As John the Baptist was sent to forerun the first coming of Christ, you have the message that'll forerun the second coming of Christ."
In the following pages (118-122) Green goes on to explain the reason for the controversy. He said that when the door of WMB's Tucson home was carved, the artist consulted with Roy Borders on what should be inscribed on the door. It seems that Green is placing the blame on Borders for misquoting the voice over the Ohio River. He says nothing of himself having quoted WMB in his first two editions of his book as personally saying to him, "you will forerun His second coming."
Pearry Green says on page 122, "Our conclusion based on this research is simple, the commission stated the message Brother Branham brought would forerun the second coming of Christ. It was not Brother Branham personally, rather it was his ministry and the Message God revealed to him that would forerun the second coming of the Lord."
So, it would appear that WMB never really said that he would forerun the second coming. If that is so, then Pearry Green bears at least as much of the blame as Roy Borders for the altered version of the the quote. In my opinion, I think Green deserves probably most of the blame, since it was from his book from where most Message believers would have discovered this altered version.
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (November 22, 2014), Click Here.
Amber Cloud Over Finger Rock
William Branham described the appearance of an unusual cloud which appeared over Finger Rock in the Santa Catalina Mountains north of Tucson which he quickly connected with his ministry:
I said, "Lord, what can I do?"
Something said to me, "Go up yonder in the mountains, and I'll talk to you."
And while I was up in the mountain... Not knowing that down in Tucson they were seeing it, but even the teachers called the children from (my little girl and them)--from the schoolroom and said, "Look yonder in that mountain. There's a fiery looking amber cloud going up in the air and coming back down, and going up in the air and coming back down."
Mrs. Evans, are you here? Ronnie, you here? I come on back down to the station; this young boy (by the filling station, Evans' filling station there)--and before I knowed what the boy was going to say, he took me off my feet. He said, "Brother Branham, you was up in that mountain over yonder, wasn't you?"
I said, "What do you mean, Ronnie? No." (See? To see what he was going to do.) Lot of times things happen I don't--you don't say it to people. It becomes... The thing of it is, you see so much happening, it becomes common to you. See? I just don't tell the people. I said, "Ronnie, what was you..."
He said, "I can show you right where you were at." Said, "I called mama, and we stood here and watched that Cloud hanging up in here, going up and down. I said, 'It's got to be Brother Branham setting up in there somewhere. That's God talking to him.'"
And the whole city of people looked at it. On a bright day with no clouds nowhere at all, with this big amber Cloud hanging there, coming down like a funnel and going back and spreading out.
Marriage and Divorce, February 21, 1965 (tape #65-0221)
As far as we know, he never confessed to Ronnie that he was up in the mountain that day.
And what about the cloud? Was there really anything significantly abnormal about it? I checked the local newspapers from that time and did not find anything reported about an unusually strange cloud over Finger Rock. And besides, there really insn't anything unusual about a single cloud appearing over the Catalinas in an otherwise cloudless sky. I often take my lunch break facing the Catalina Mountains. Many times I've observed a single cloud over the Catalinas on a clear day, continually changing in size and shape throughout the course of my break (see a photo I took of one such cloud over the Catalinas one day in March of 2013 at the bottom of this article).
Was he really on the mountain when the kids saw the cloud over the mountain, or did he see Ronnie Evans' observation as an opportunity to add further vindication to his ministry? He originally told Ronnie that he was not on the mountain at the time. This incident fits a pattern where Wm. Branham will discover the occurrence of an unusual event and later claim that he was somehow connected to it, usually without evidence, and sometimes even contrary to the evidence. Since we have no idea if or when he was in the mountain or when this unusual cloud appeared (sound familiar?), there is no evidence that this cloud had anything to do with whatever WMB was doing that day. All we have is the testimony of a little boy, and yet another after-the-fact claim made by William Branham.
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (February 3, 2004), Click Here.
The Danny Henry Prophecy
William Branham told of a time when he was preaching at a Full Gospel Business Men's Fellowship breakfast in Los Angeles. WMB explains what happened right after the sermon:And as I was walking from the upper platform to the lower, a fine handsome-looking young fellow of about thirty years old, run forth and threw his arms around me. He said, "I'm Danny Henry." And not knowing that that was his brother doing the televising. And, uh, it televises there for the Christian Business Men. And it's Jane Russell, that movie star, her cousin. Her mother is a Pentecostal preacher. And then when they started running to me, and he throwed his arms around me, and said, "God bless you, Brother Branham." He said, "I hope this don't sound sacrilegious, but, to my way of seeing it, that Message could be the 23rd chapter of Revelation." And when he said that, he started speaking in tongues. A boy who had never even heard of such a thing, a Baptist by denomination. And as soon as… He turned white, and he looked at me. He didn't know what to do. There is man setting here was there. Were you there, Fred? How many was there at that time? Yeah, there is the three here, was there at that time. And he didn't know what to say. And there was a great big French woman setting down here. She raised up, she said, "Why, that don't need any interpretation. That was purely French." The boy said, "I don't know one word of French." And she had wrote down what he said. And then there was a man setting on the corner, he said, "That's correct. I've got wrote down what he said, is French." Way back in the back, a blond-headed, handsome-looking fellow, standing up against the wall, come forward and compared notes. He was the interpreter for the U.N., for French. And this man over here was Victor Le Doux, of the Arne Vick church out there, and he wrote it down. And I've got the interpretation to it. Listen to this if I can read it.I Victor Le Doux, am a full-blooded Frenchman, borned again Christian, filled with the Holy Spirit. My address is 809 North King Road, Los Angeles 46. I attend the Bethel Temple, pastor Arne Vick, pastor. A true translation that I proclaim, of prophecy said over Brother Branham, given by Danny Henry in French, February the 11th, 1961, at the Full Gospel Business Men's breakfast. A true translation of the prophecy.Now here's what It said:Because thou has chosen the narrow path, the harder way, thou has walked in your own choosing. (Now, I can see that. Moses had to make his choice too. See?) Thou hast picked the precise and correct way--correct decision, and it is My way (underlined 'My way,' the Holy Spirit speaking back). Because of this momentous decision, a huge portion of heaven awaits you--awaits thee. What a glorious decision... (Now, listen close.)... What a glorious decision thou has made. This in itself is that which will make, and come to pass, the tremendous victory in the love Divine.You notice, it's a verb before the adverb. See? French... Now, the U.N. interpreter interpret that, and the boy knows not one word: never heard--never heard of such thing as speaking in tongues. He was a Baptist. Just happened to drop in there and heard that music, and said come up there, and stand up there and listen at me preach. Now... "in the love Divine," Divine Love... How can that be Divine Love if it isn't the--the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit is Divine Love.
("Standing in the Gap," sermon #63-0623M)
I'm not so sure the Holy Spirit made this prophecy. First of all, who is Danny Henry? How do we know he didn't really know French?
Next, what does it even mean that his decision "in itself is that which will make, and come to pass, the tremendous victory in the love Divine"?
And then, the interpretation uses terrible King James English grammar. How do you translate French into King James Enlgish, anyway? What French word translates into "thou" or "hast" or "thee"? And why would God lead someone to translate a prophecy into an archaic language like King James English, anyway?
Finally, Wm. Branham's confidence in it being a supernaturally inspired prophecy is largely based on the word order of the English from French. However, if it were a proper translation, the word order would have been changed to accommodate the English language. The interpretation would not even make sense at all if the word order were left in the same word-for-word order of the French language. In any case, refering to a "love Divine" isn't itself bad grammar. Either that or Charles Wesley wrote his songs in French and then translated them into English, such as in, "Love Divine All Loves Excelling."
Everything about this prophecy leads one to believe it was not a word from the Lord.
To read an archived discussion on this topic at our forum (July 6, 2003), Click Here.
Here we demonstrate some interesting similarities between William Branham's angelic commission and Mormon prophet Joseph Smith's.
William Branham Encounters His Angel
I cried before God....I laid my face to the ground....I looked up to God and cried, “If you will forgive me for the way that I have done, I’ll try to do better....I'm sorry that I’ve been so neglectful all these years in doing the work you wanted me to do....Will you speak to me someway, God? Then along in the night, at about the eleventh hour, I had quit praying and was sitting up when I noticed a light flickering in the room. Thinking someone was coming with a flashlight, I looked out the window, but there was no one, and when I looked back, the light was spreading out on the floor, becoming wider.
And I heard somebody coming, just walking, only it was bare-footed. And I seen the foot of a Man come in. It was dark in the room, all but right here where It was shining right down. I seen the foot of a Man coming in. And when He come into the room, walked on up, He was a Man about, looked to weigh about two hundred pounds. He had His hands folded like this, dressed in a white robe, had dark hair to His shoulder, very pleasant sort of a Man
So I was setting there and looking at Him. I--I kind of had my hand up like that. He was looking right at me, just as pleasant. But He had a real deep voice, and He said, "Do not fear; I am sent from the Presence of Almighty God to tell you, that your peculiar birth and life has been to indicate that you're to pray for sick people, and take this to the world." Said, "If you'll get the people to believe you and be sincere, nothing shall stand before your prayer. And you're going into all parts of the world; and kings and rulers, and great men will be come and be prayed for. And there'll be great things and signs, and the great things to happen."
(This narrative, given in Wm. Branham’s own words, is a compilation of excerpts from the following sermons and one magazine article:
“How the Gift Came to Me,” The Voice of Healing, vol. 1, no. 1, April, 1948;
HOW.THE.ANGEL.CAME.TO.ME_ CHICAGO.IL FOOTPRINT.BOOK MONDAY_ 55-0117;
EXHORTATION.ON.HEALING_ LA.CA TUESDAY_ 51-0501;
MANIFESTATION.OF.THE.SPIRIT_ TOLEDO.OH TUESDAY_ 51-0717)
Angel Moroni Appears to Joseph Smith
In consequence of these things, I often felt condemned for my weakness and imperfections; when, on the evening of the above-mentioned twenty-first of September, after I had retired to my bed for the night, I betook myself to prayer and supplication to Almighty God for forgiveness of all my sins and follies, and also for a manifestation to me, that I might know of my state and standing before him; for I had full confidence in obtaining a divine manifestation, as I previously had one.
While I was thus in the act of calling upon God, I discovered a light appearing in my room, which continued to increase until the room was lighter than at noonday, when immediately a personage appeared at my bedside, standing in the air, for his feet did not touch the floor.
He had on a loose robe of most exquisite whiteness. It was a whiteness beyond anything earthly I had ever seen; nor do I believe that any earthly thing could be made to appear so exceedingly white and brilliant. His hands were naked, and his arms also, a little above the wrist; so, also, were his feet naked, as were his legs, a little above the ankles. His head and neck were also bare. I could discover that he had no other clothing on but this robe, as it was open, so that I could see into his bosom.
Not only was his robe exceedingly white, but his whole person was glorious beyond description, and his countenance truly like lightning. The room was exceedingly light, but not so very bright as immediately around his person. When I first looked upon him, I was afraid; but the fear soon left me.
He called me by name, and said unto me that he was a messenger sent from the presence of God to me, and that his name was Moroni; that God had a work for me to do; and that my name should be had for good and evil among all nations, kindreds, and tongues, or that it should be both good and evil spoken of among all people.
Sentence-by-sentence Comparison Between WMB's Enounter and Joseph Smith's
Prayer and request for a sign from God:
Wm. Branham (WMB): I cried before God....I laid my face to the ground....I looked up to God and cried, “If you will forgive me for the way that I have done, I’ll try to do better....I'm sorry that I’ve been so neglectful all these years in doing the work you wanted me to do....Will you speak to me someway, God?
Joseph Smith (JS): I betook myself to prayer and supplication to Almighty God for forgiveness of all my sins and follies, and also for a manifestation to me, that I might know of my state and standing before him...
A light appears and grows:Then along in the night, at about the eleventh hour, I had quit praying and was sitting up when I noticed a light flickering in the room. Thinking someone was coming with a flashlight, I looked out the window, but there was no one, and when I looked back, the light was spreading out on the floor, becoming wider.
JS: While I was thus in the act of calling upon God, I discovered a light appearing in my room, which continued to increase until the room was lighter than at noonday...
Description of the Angel:And I heard somebody coming, just walking, only it was bare-footed. And I seen the foot of a Man come in. It was dark in the room, all but right here where It was shining right down. I seen the foot of a Man coming in. And when He come into the room, walked on up, He was a Man about, looked to weigh about two hundred pounds. He had His hands folded like this, dressed in a white robe, had dark hair to His shoulder, very pleasant sort of a Man
JS: [I]mmediately a personage appeared at my bedside, standing in the air , for his feet did not touch the floor [it is interesting to note that Mr. Branham said that Jesus once appeared to him standing 10 feet above him in mid air--see SEED.NOT.HEIR.WITH.SHUCK_ JEFF.IN V-6 N-4 THURSDAY_ 65-0218]. He had on a loose robe of most exquisite whiteness. It was a whiteness beyond anything earthly I had ever seen; nor do I believe that any earthly thing could be made to appear so exceedingly white and brilliant. His hands were naked, and his arms also, a little above the wrist; so, also, were his feet naked, as were his legs, a little above the ankles. His head and neck were also bare. I could discover that he had no other clothing on but this robe, as it was open, so that I could see into his bosom.
Angel’s greeting and message:Striking similarities, to say the least. Was William Branham’s angel none other than a re-appearance of Joseph Smith’s angel Moroni? Or did Mr. Branham merely borrow a story from the Mormon's archives? As a point of interest, WMB had this to say about an obscure Mormon book:
WMB: "Do not fear; I am sent from the Presence of Almighty God to tell you, that your peculiar birth and life has been to indicate that you're to pray for sick people, and take this to the world." Said, "If you'll get the people to believe you and be sincere, nothing shall stand before your prayer. And you're going into all parts of the world; and kings and rulers, and great men will be come and be prayed for. And there'll be great things and signs, and the great things to happen."JS: He called me by name, and said unto me that he was a messenger sent from the presence of God to me, and that his name was Moroni; that God had a work for me to do [Mr. Branham's angel once told him, "There'll be a work for you to do when you get older."--GOD.REVEALING.HIMSELF.TO.HIS.PEOPLE_ CLEVELAND.OH SUNDAY_ 50-0813E]; and that my name should be had for good and evil among all nations, kindreds, and tongues, or that it should be both good and evil spoken of among all people.And then one night, I was coming out of Seattle, and there was a man standing over there. And he had a book under his arm. He kept telling me, "Brother Branham, you're in the wrong church."
And I didn't know what he was talking of. And he put the book under my arm. It was called the Mormon Word Of God. I don't know what it was. It's a--it's one of their prophets of The Latter Day Saint, some bunch of them, that they claims they see the neophytes. And--and back there a hundred and... long long... how long ago it was, it... on a certain page there... I have the book in my library. It prophesied, their prophet, and said, that, "In the last days that Germany would have a--a ism called Nazis." And it went ahead and said, "In that day, let W-i double l-i-a-m, William Branham be called and set aside in humility for the service that I have called him to." That's right.
BELIEVE.YE.THAT.I.CAN.DO.THIS?_ LA.CA WEDNESDAY_ 51-0509
For a discussion on WMB's name appearing in this Mormon document (September 21, 2002), see:
And They Were All Healed Every One
When the even was come, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils: and he cast out the spirits with [his] word, and healed all that were sick...
There came also a multitude [out] of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits [to the apostles]: and they were healed every one.
How does Wm. Branham’s ministry of healing compare to those of Jesus and the apostles? Should we expect that if Wm. Branham was sent to reveal Jesus Christ again to our days that his gift of healing should be as flawless as Jesus’ and his disciples' were? In the next 4 posts we’ll take a look at the stories of some of those who were there.
Before proceeding, I would point out that in all of Scripture, there is not a single example of any person who was not healed when the Lord or His apostles pronounced them healed, nor any who, once they were healed, later lost their healing for any reason whatsoever.
Testimony of Alfred Pohl
“Mr. Pohl was in a Pentecostal denomination in Canada for years, was a leader in that denomination, and a teacher in their Bible college until he left the Pentecostal movement in 1950. The duplicity Pohl witnessed in the Branham healing campaign was a key step toward his leaving Pentecostalism. He’s written an excellent book entitled "Why I Left the Tongues Movement.”--David Cloud, editor of O Timothy magazine.
Here is an excerpt from Mr. Pohl’s book:
At that time, I believe it was in 1947, I was on the teaching staff of our denominational Bible school in Saskatoon, Sask. The healing meetings were held in the church auditorium which was adjacent to the Bible School dormitory and offices. It became my responsibility to place the very sick, such as stretcher-cases, in the various dormitory rooms. The "healer" in this particular campaign, was William Branham from the U.S.A., who had been invited by our church leaders to minister in some of our larger city churches. The services were very well attended by people coming long distances, many from other provinces.
When Mr. Branham had concluded his meeting in the church auditorium, I would take his arm and lead him from room to room in the dormitory, so that he could pray for those who were unable to attend the public meetings or stand in the healing-lines. This gave me an excellent opportunity to work in very close contact with him and observe what was happening. Let me repeat here, I was fully behind Mr. Branham at this time, and prayed earnestly with him for the healing of these dear suffering people. At that time, as he gave assurance to one after the other that they were healed, I rejoiced and praised the Lord with them.
A common practice of Mr. Branham was to take the hand of the sick person, and then say something like this, "The vibrations in your hand tell me that you have cancer. But I will pray for you that the Lord will heal you". When he had prayed, he would say something like this, "The vibrations are gone, the cancer is dead. You are healed! But you will be very sick for about three days till your body throws off the dead cancerous tissue. But don’t worry, you are healed. Just trust the Lord." With similar words he would give assurances to these suffering ones that they would recover. This, of course, would bring hope and joy to these dear souls, many of whom responded with a large financial gift, sometimes far beyond their means. At times I was given large sums of money to pass on to Mr. Branham, which I always did gladly, for I too believed him.
This will have to be just a very brief picture of what went on day after day throughout the whole campaign, but you can visualize the rejoicing that was created by this man’s declarations of healings, and the hope that was given to scores of people who were desperate in their pain and suffering. I wish that I could go on to say that all these, or at least a good number of them, did go on to recover. But I can’t. Time went on, the campaign ended, and Mr. Branham and his party were gone. Then we began to see the results being tested by time. It was a difficult time for us, and particularly for me. For one by one these that I had personally seen "healed" and declared so by the "healer," died. Our faith was severely tested. Relatives of the deceased ones would ask, "Why?" What could we tell them?
I had to ask myself several questions: If these people were really healed, why did they die? Did their faith fail? Why then did so many fail in their faith and lose their healing? How did this line up with healings recorded in Scripture? Did people healed by Christ and the apostles lose their healing? Were they subject to relapse too if their faith failed? Or, could it be that these Branham healings were counterfeit and not genuine after all, much as we had believed him to be genuine? And, worst of all, was it possible that we had been victims of deception?
(see also an interview between David Cloud and Alfred Pohl at http://www.isitso.org/guide/branham.html )
Waymon Doyle Miller
In his book, Modern Divine Healing (Miller Publishing Company, 1956, pages 257-259), Waymon Doyne Miller describes the observations of a Baptist minister who attended several Branham campaign meetings in Durban, South Africa. He writes:
Through the kindness of a Baptist minister, however, some interesting data was obtained on Branham’s campaign in Durban. This minister attended four out of five of the evenings meetings, and n each instance sat quite near the Branham party so that procedures could be carefully observed. The news editor of a Durban paper made available to him a list of claimed cures that were released to the press, and he personally investigated these cases, some individuals of whom he knew personally. In a letter to me this minister revealed his findings in these cases, and contrasted them with the pretentious claims of miracles made in their behalf.
Mr. Miller’s Baptist friend continues to describe several less than positive testimonies made by those who were said to have been miraculously healed at the Branham campaign:
- The healing of a woman who the Branham campaign had reported to have been bedridden for 10 months, but was neither bedridden nor ill (she had been suffering from menopause which had "laid her low" for a day or two, after which it left her normally after a week or so).
- At lease 20 known TB cases who were rejoicing in their healing, but ended up no better than before they were pronounced healed.
- About a week after the campaign, a local newspaper published the case of a woman with a chronic heart condition who had been healed at the campaign. In that same issue was her obituary which reported of her death the previous day. The editor hadn't realized it until after the paper had been distributed.
- A 23 year old man with leukemia was singled out by WMB as having a “cancer of the blood.” WMB exclaimed, “You are cured!” The young man seemed well for about 12 hours, but then got worse. He died in less than a month.
- No less than 4 members of a large family personally known to this Baptist minister were pronounced healed from diseases including arthritis and a red corpuscle deficiency. None of them were healed despite their being noted by the Branham Campaign as having been the one family which benefited most during the meetings.
The Baptist minister concluded his letter, saying, “And so it continues right through forty-six cases. I have not made any check lately, i.e., within the last two months, but the evidence before me is such that I can come to no other conclusion than that the cures claimed are so largely exaggerated as to be almost fraudulent in their claim.”
Mr. Miller continues his evaluation of WMB’s South African campaigns:
Reference is made in this letter to misrepresentations by F. F. Bosworth, an assistant to Branham in his South African campaigns, in an American paper. Before me is a copy of the Herald of His Coming, February 1952, a religious journal published at Los Angeles, in which is a front-page article by Bosworth on the South African campaigns. This article, entitled “God’s Visitation to South Africa,” contain these contested statements.
Concerning the young doctor “healed” of leukemia, Bosworth writes: “In one service Brother Branham pointed to a doctor by the name of Michel Plaff, brought there from the Addington Hospital very ill with leukemia, and said, ‘You are healed of leukemia. They examined him at the hospital the next morning and found his blood entirely free from leukemia (cancer of the blood). The whole hospital was stirred and it was the topic of conversation there yesterday.” But this young doctor had been dead two months when this report form Bosworth was printed!
Walter J. Holllenweger
Walter J. Holllenweger, a Swiss-born theologian and Professor of Mission at the University of Birmingham, was a personal friend of Wm. Branham and interpreted for him at Zurich, Switzerland. Hollenweger said in his book, The Pentecostals, (Hendrickson Publishers, Inc., 1972, page 355), "However generously he [William Branham] is judged, it must be admitted that his sermons were not merely simple, but often naive as well, and that by contrast to what he claimed, only a small percentage of those who sought healing were in fact healed." [emphasis mine--JK]
Hollenweger goes on to describe a personal friend of his who had been called out by WMB at one of his campaigns. WMB told her, “Be comforted, my daughter, your faith has helped you. You will be healed.” She wrote Hollenweger in despair that she was getting no better after this, pleading with Hollenweger to ask Brother Branham once again for her healing. Hollenweger had to decline, not wishing to add to her false hope, in view of the fact that,“...the journals of the Swiss and foreign Pentecostal movement had for years publicized the testimonies of those who had not been healed.”
Someone said, "Does the healings last?"
They last as long as faith lasts. But when faith fails, then your healing will fail.
Diseases and Afflictions, tape #50-0100
To read an archived discussion on this topic (September 6, 2004), click here.
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