AND THE SECOND COMING
(SPOKEN WORD PUBLICATIONS)
William Marrion Branham has been dead for many years and yet his influence lives on in the lives of his dedicated followers. "Spoken Word Publications" or ( Spoken Word Publications) headquartered in Jeffersonville Indiana distributes William Branham's messages worldwide.
In Newsletter No.5 (undated), this statement is made on page 4,
"...We have run many advertisements in large Christian magazines, such as Charisma, and this is the way we make contact with new people. Most people that write us have never ever heard of Bro. Branham....".
Why all this interest in William Branham, deceased? Perhaps this quote from "The Ledger" of Saturday, April 23, l985 best presents the view of his followers.
"Before every scriptural event, God has always spoken to a prophet. And once again, a prophet has been in the land Brother William Branham, the messenger to this last age. The same pillar of fire that led the children of Israel out of Egypt has appeared in these last days to lead the true bride of Christ back to the revealed word of God.
It was on June 11, l933, that a most amazing and well-documented phenomenon occurred. As he was baptizing the 17th person in the Ohio River before a crowd of about 4,000, the pillar of fire appeared with the sound of rushing wind that was audible to all. It came down and hovered over him. Many ran in fear while others knelt in prayer. A voice spoke to him out of this pillar of fire and said, "As John the Baptist was the forerunner of the first coming of Christ, so your message is the forerunner of the second coming of Christ."
After that supernatural event occurred, he had hundreds of visions and visitations from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Since his followers enthusiastically believe the above claims, their total devotion to the man is understood. However, notice that their belief in this man as a prophet of God is largely based on what we might call "signs and wonders". They prominently display a photograph of their leader with the "pillar of fire" on their publications as "evidence" of his being from God. However, we realize that Satan and his ministers can present themselves as an "Angel of Light" and "ministers of righteousness" (2 Corinthians 11:13,14), so we need to be careful in our evaluation of supernatural events.
Some Christian writers present the view that William Branham was acting at all times under the power and direction of Satan. Other Christian writers feel that he was at one time a great man of God ministering salvation and healing. Both camps agree that at some point he began to leave the orthodox teachings of the Bible and began to place more importance in his visions than he did in God's word the Bible. It is a fact that he began to teach the following heresies.
THE BRANHAM TEACHING ON JESUS CHRIST
In "An Exposition of the Seven Church Ages", we find the following teaching by Wm. Branham. Page 21 says,
"People talk about Jesus being the Eternal Son of God. Now isn't that a contradiction? Whoever heard of a Son being eternal? Sons have beginnings, but that which is eternal never had a beginning."
Page 37 goes on to say,
"Jesus was created. When the Holy Ghost came upon Mary He created within her the cell that would multiply and become the body of our Lord. That cell was created. It was the beginning of the creation of God. That is who Jesus is."
However, Jesus Christ is eternal, not created. When the prophecy came to the Virgin Mary, she was told she would bear "Emmanuel", "God with us". (Matthew 1:23).
John 1:1 states that the Word was "with God" and "the Word was God".
Verse 14 of John, chapter one, goes on to say that"the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us".
Colossians 2:9 states that "all the fullness of the Godhead (Deity) was in Christ IN THE FLESH".
Micah 5:2 states that Christ is "from the days of eternity".
Yes, Jesus Christ is eternal God, and is definitely not created as Branham came to teach.
THE SEED OF THE SERPENT?
In "An Exposition of the Seven Church Ages", on pages 98,100 and 101, Branham goes to some lengths to state that he had the "true revelation of the Serpents Seed".
He claims Eve had sexual relations with Satan the Devil, and Cain was conceived. He teaches that Satan was intimate with Eve before Adam, and so when Eve conceivedfrom Adam, she was already carrying the Serpent's child in her womb. This resulted in "two sons (twins) from separate impregnations." This highly unlikely occurrence has no support from the Bible.Scripture plainly states, "And Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bare Cain, and said, "I have gotten a man from the Lord". (Genesis 4:1).
Previously Eve said, "The serpent deceived me, and I dId EAT" (Genesis 3:13). Her sin was eating the forbidden fruit, not dallying with the Devil!
Since Branham was recognized as a Prophet by many, we should consider at least one of his prophecies. In "The Seven Church Ages", page 322, he made the following prediction
"...Jesus did not say no man could know the year, month, or week in which His coming was to be completed. So I repeat, I sincerely believe and maintain as a private student of the Word, along with Divine inspiration that 1977 ought to terminate the world systems and usher in the millenium."
Branham followers are quick to point out that this was merely a "prediction", not a prophecy, but if William Branham was indeed the "prophet" and "messenger to this last age" he would speak truth and not error. He, himself claimed "Divine inspiration" for his 1977 date, and how good a "private student of the Word" was he?
Obviously, Branham's understanding of the work of God was sadly lacking, as was his "Divine inspiration" for this obviously false prophecy. Mark 13:32 states "Of that day and that hour knoweth no man..."
Matthew 24:42 says, "Watch therefore, for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come."
In 1950, the pillar of fire was photographed above Brother Branham's head. This picture is in the Hall of Religious Art in Washington, D.C. as the only verified photograph of a supernatural being.
God has also vindicated his servant with many thousands of healings and miracles. Seven people were raised from the dead; five of these were well documented."
OTHER DENIALS OF THE CHRISTIAN FAITH
Branham denies the Trinity and the doctrine of eternal hellfire. He joins many other cult groups in these denials of the essentials of the Christian faith.
We have chosen to let the reader decide whether William Branham ever functioned as a true Christian. We acknowledge that many supernatural happenings occurred around him, but we cannot use these events to judge the man. We must confine our evaluation to a comparison of his teachings with those of God's word the Bible.
Our conclusion is that William Branham became a false teacher and a false prophet, and as such we are under Bible command to avoid him and his legacy.
Whatever good things he might have done, he ended up denying the Deity of Jesus Christ. As such a one he must be identified as a counterfeit Christian and he and his followers as a cult.