We will just pick up right where we ended the last issue and continue the message which we have titled, “THE BIBLE-AND ITS MESSAGE”. I do not know just how many issues it will take to get it finished, but it is too important for us to rush through it.
A GREAT WHORE REVEALED
I want to go back to the 17th chapter of the book of revelation, and show you why the Catholic Church will not read it. In 96 A.D., the last patriarch alive was a very old man. We do not know how old he was; but he had walked with Jesus throughout His 3 1/2 years of ministry. He was the last one who was an eye witness of what happened from the very beginning, up until that hour. He was to be the last man the Spirit of God would talk to, as far as writing something for the Church before she went into that Dark period of time. He was told, “Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter.” When it came time for him to write the things that shall be hereafter, it says, “And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither. I will show unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters.” In 96 A.D., this creature did not even exist. However, John was going to be shown a preview of Catholicism in 1989. “With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.” I can point you back to the last 600 years of secular history. What do you have going on in South America? Do you know why South America has been, for the last 60 years, facing all kinds of revolutions? Because the power of the Catholic Church has held them in ignorance. Anywhere that religious institution governs a society, sooner or later, there comes a revolution. It breeds political assassination. The Catholic priest, and that system, always watch to see which one is the most powerful, then it pits the one against the other. They align with the one they see is the strongest. That is why they have been able to survive every kind of political government system that has ever been, because they always play the part of a whore with it. They are always looked upon as a religious, friendly ally. Brothers and sisters, the wine of her fornication is her teachings; which political big shots think is so wonderful. “So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet colored beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. This is Rome, restored. I have to say, she is not going to ride much longer. She is going to get torn to pieces. “And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet color, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication.” This is not necessarily a description of her, as she existed in the Dark Ages. I do not exclude it, but this is where she established her traits. It was then, that she martyred the saints. That is why in 1989, she is still drunk and reeling under the impact of that. I hope you understand what I mean by that. For I see that She is still drunk with it. She is putting out that pitiful plea today, that she is broke, but with the price of gold what it is, go with me to the Vatican, and let us go into some of the museums there; and we will see whether she is broke or not. All those art pieces are decked with gold trim. I have no idea what the price of gold is today, but if you would take all those cups, all those crowns. all those different things that kings have sent to the various popes through time, I seriously doubt that you could count their worth. I saw one cup that the czar of Russia had sent to a certain pope, a mammoth thing, so tall and so big around, solid gold. She is decked with this. It is her wealth: it is her investment. This cup she holds in her hand, symbolically, is a cup that represents the mass she has used. Just think of the countless number of kings that have had the mass performed over them, when they were blessed by the various popes and set in office to rule. Think of the many times the mass cup has been used at the death of royal monarchs. Think of the mass cup that has been used, every time a little infant is born to one of those royal families, and they bring it to the priest to be blessed. Think of it, when the multitudes come to be married, and you will see that her cup (her mass) has been a monetary gimmick all along. It was no longer an ordinance ministered to the believer, to point their memory to the sufferings and crucifixion of Jesus Christ on the cross. Every one who partakes of it is drinking a little more of the wine of her fornication. She is proud of that thing; but one of these days God is going to rip it right out of her hand. That is why the Bible describes the fall of Babylon, that the smoke of her ascends up forever. That literally means the judgment against Roman Catholicism is going to be so terrible, and so precise, there is no way a fragment of anything like it can ever linger past the Millennium. And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.” Think of it, Catholicism had not even been thought of in 96 A.D., when John saw it. In the spirit, he saw a terrible looking woman coming. She was not an ugly looking woman. No, She looked like one of these, (Not the honky tonk gals.) She looked like one of the elite, celebrity type personalities. The kind you might see in swanky nightclubs, or at a presidential ball. That is the type of creature she looked like. She is the type of church that kings like to sit in; because she is the type of church that does not embarrass those who are powerful in politics. No wonder Mafia figures do not feel embarrassed sitting in the pews of a Catholic Church, when one of their buddies has been machine gunned by a different gang. They carry their 45’s in their shoulder holster, and sit there ready to blow the daylights out of anybody that opposes their little setup. Yet they have to take their buddy and have that pope or priest pronounce a blessing upon him. They will roll that bullet riddled body up there, and will cry and go through all their rigmarole, then push the casket down the aisle with those little altar boys waving the incense burners. It looks like a brush pile on fire. Then they will roll that casket out the doorway, taking its last ride to the cemetery. As far as I am concerned, he is in worse shape than a man on the street that had been picked up and wrapped in a plastic bag and put in the ground. You will never get the world to see it like this; though, for they look upon her as a thing of beauty. This is Catholicism in 1989, she has already given birth to Lutheranism, to Calvinism, to Knoxism, to Wesleyanism, and to Pentecostalism. Every one of them has become an organization just like Mommy. They have built their seminaries, their Bible schools, their institutions of learning, thinking that is how the Bible was written. Believe me, during the first age of Christendom, there was not one Bible school. There was not one seminary. From the Church, new converts learned the truth, That is where the true light was. However, when Catholicism gained control, the light went out. The written word became a thing interpreted, and was given whatever meaning the Catholic Church wanted it to have. As we finish reading, remember, it is the Bible that declares these systems of religion to be abominable; not me. They are the harlots of verse 5. That is a picture of Lutheranism and all the rest of organized religion. When I say this, I am not personally gouging at individual Lutherans, Baptists, or anyone. That is not my purpose. My purpose is to expose the system as having been a cruel religious jail house. That is really what they are; jail houses. They are just gateways to hell. When the Spirit of God moved, and gave them birth, they were not organized. They were a group of people coming out of something, to be tree to move with the Holy Spirit in their hour, to be whatever the Holy Spirit led them to be. After a while, though, everyone got the idea, We have to organize; to protect what we have. The moment they did, they shut the Spirit of God out; For God will not be bound by a set of By-laws. Eventually, He will go on somewhere else to another group of people who are hungry for truth. Here is a description of how God looks upon all of this in 1989. It is an abomination. Let us read verse 6. “And I saw the WOMAN drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.” Secular history will tell you what those Catholic popes did during that long Dark Age period; how people were treated, imprisoned, tortured, and so forth. In the Spanish Inquisition, Jews were strangled, and put to death in every other way imaginable. I have the article, ‘The Spanish Inquisition,” which went on in Spain. I have forgotten exactly how long it lasted, but it was so cruel. There were even Catholic people tortured and killed. Let me tell you how they did it; The system of Catholicism itself, had gotten to be so cruel, that the priests who ministered in this, were a drunken, angry, hateful bunch of cruel humanity, that actually thought they were doing God a great service. The more people they could send to the stocks, and the torture chambers, the better they felt; for they were really doing something for God. Just say, for an example of what went on, If a man did not like his wife, and wanted to get rid of her, he would go to the confession booth and confess to the priest, My wife is this, that, and so forth: and by the time he was finished telling it all, the Catholic authorities had already picked her up, without telling her why, and taken her to a kangaroo court after which, she would end up in the dungeon, and many times they were left to starve to death between intervals of torture. Oftentimes, political figures who became a target in the eyes of another politician, would fabricate a scheme, in which he would confess something that would get his opponent picked up and put in the dungeon; and the results were the same as we just described. Think of it, they were all Catholics; but one Catholic official wanting to get rid of his opponent, would go confess some kind of lie that could be believed, and that would get him out of the picture forever. Not only were protesters and heretics, treated like that, but all those others also; people who literally became victimized through some evil scheme. No wonder the Bible says she is drunken with the blood of the saints, and so forth; she is sure spilled enough blood to be drunk on it.
THE BEAST WITH SEVEN HEADS AND TEN HORNS
Let us read verse 7, in Revelation 17, and continue on. “And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns.” Let me stop reading right there, and call something to your attention. After the closing of WW2, and the reconstruction of Europe, NATO, the European Common Market, and all these various means put forth during the last 40 years, have geographically reconstructed Europe, the ten horned area, and today, we are faced with a European continent that has been rebuilt by American aid money, and has been protected by as much or more than three hundred thousand troops. Therefore, any time you get the payroll of three hundred thousand troops, going into some other nation, year after year, it just stands to reason, the nation who pays that, is going to lose a lot of money back home. The ten horned area is now reconstructed, and a Frenchman is now the head of the European Common Market. It is in Newsweek as well as the Jerusalem Post; their plans are, that 1992 is the year for a united Europe. Presumably, 350 million population strong, and a competitor against the United States in the industrial complex of the world. I read another article that said, it is believed that there is destined to be one European currency that will be used by all who transact any kind of business within. It will not be tied to the American dollar. It means the time has come that they are going to throw away the great crutch they have leaned upon for years. Europe will have to go it alone. Just think of it though, the Catholic Church has rode right on through and survived it all. Now I grant you, the Pope is having a lot of problems with some priests today: but when I see these tremors in the Catholic Church, it lets me know, the spirit that will eventually bring it down, it is already at work. However, it cannot do its work until Catholicism rides that period out. Remember though, 1992, is not very far away; so do not make too many long range plans for the future.
FACING THE TRUTH
Nothing I am going to say, is in any way meant to cast a reflection on any individual person; we are just going to look at some established facts. I was raised according to the Methodist way; and knew no different. The first time I was ever baptized, I was about 14 years of age, and it was in the Church of Christ church. Later, as we moved, because my parents had been raised up Methodists, we went to a Methodist church. I grew up believing Methodism was the right way; because I could see there was a difference between what they taught, and what the Church of Christ taught. However, you have heard me say many times, To me, the Bible was just a book that ought to be in every Christian home, but you should never get too close to it. It makes people go crazy. They gouge their eyes out, they cut their hands off, and so forth. I saw things like that stand out so much above everything else. I really thought a lot of religion was just a lot of fanaticism. Nevertheless, some of the very things I belittled back then, I now say, praise God for them! I have found that there is a genuine, running right down through the middle of all the fanaticism. The Bible is the only book that has stabilized the course of human beings, through the centuries of time. It is because through centuries of time, there have been a few people that have been willing to adhere to the message of truth they were able to grasp in their hour of time. There are multitudes today as you try to deal with them in relation to truth, they are ready 1.0 argue with you, and say, I do not believe that; you are only giving your opinion. By the time you finish with a person like that, you may as well throw most of the Bible in a garbage can, as far as they are concerned. They either have an excuse for why that is not important, or they will say, That has already been fulfilled, or that is not for today; it was only for the days of the apostles, or something to that effect; and when they get finished, you have a very small book left. The little chart we are using, is just to portray the Old Testament period and New Testament period, and to show how the New Testament period was split up by the Dark Age period. It is sad; but there are a lot of denominational people today, that do not even know what the Dark Ages perished to. They think someone ran out of kerosene; or did not know how to make a wax candle. Saints; We ought to be thankful to God, to know what we know. The light went out and progress ceased, and Europe was held in the clutches of a spell for a thousand years. Human life was a cheap item. Not because some monarch with a sharp sword came riding through with his army. It was because the Pope cracked a whip over all of that vast population. There was a teaching of so-called Christendom, that was so diabolical, multitudes died by various means of execution. Material progress came to a standstill. That is why there was a Dark Age period in which the Roman Catholic Church dominated every monarchy of government. All the governmental systems of Europe were tied to the Vatican by religious affiliation. Everyone in each nation was a Catholic by church membership, and during the Dark Ages, the teachings of the New Testament, (which is the new covenant of grace given first to the Jew, and then because they rejected it, given to the Gentiles) were no longer adhered to. We (Gentiles) received it in its original truth; but by the time the Dark Ages came, The Catholic church had taken the bible from it followers, telling them it was just for the priest to read. The Catholic believer was told that he could not understand the Bible without the priest interpreting it for him; therefore, there was no need for him to even read it. They perverted every doctrine to the point that even the apostle Paul could not have recognized what they taught as being from anything he had ever written. The then known world was under the spell of a traditional form of Christendom that was Satanic oriented. Actually it was Satan in disguise. That did not mean that every Roman Catholic was a devil. There were many sincere Catholics who knew no better, because the true light had been put out. Therefore, God saved those individuals, as they purposed within their own heart’s to walk with Him in the little they did know. In other words, God always had a few souls He could look to as His true children in every age or period of time, no matter what the Catholic Church did. That is why there were men like Martin Luther that could hear the voice of God, when it came time for the Reformation.
WHAT ABOUT THE REFORMATION?
I want to show you how the devil is always on the scene to throw things out of focus; when God does something. There are many people today, following the teachings of William Branham, (The prophet messenger to this Laodicean Age) who have little regard for the Reformation; and of those men that preceded him. As a matter of fact, they would almost sneeze at anything that was said in a sermon by Calvin, or Knox, or Wesley, as if those men were unimportant. If it had not been for those men, you and I would not be where we are today. Neither would William Marion Branham have had what he had, to give to this generation of people. Why were these men important in their hour? Because the Bible itself, was a book that was almost spiritually closed to the truth it contained. People’s lives were held in fear, because the Catholic Church taught, “Outside the Roman Catholic Church, there is no salvation.” There was no such thing as anyone believing they could be saved by grace; through a simple faith in Jesus Christ, bypassing the church. They were afraid to do anything contrary to the teachings of the church. It meant death; and purgatory as well, with no hope. Since there was about 500 years of time involved, in the Church being stripped of its true revelation of God’s word going into the Dark Ages, God will use approximately the same span of time bringing her back out of that darkness. The Church did not just suddenly lose the light she had in the first age. Satan stripped her a little at a time, as each generation passed from the scene. It was a gradual transition that took about 500 years, before she was plunged into almost total darkness. The Holy Ghost, with His supernatural manifestations, just gradually withdrew. That did not mean the Holy Spirit was no longer present. There has always been a few people somewhere, stuck off in an enclave, under pressure, that the Holy Spirit would move upon, to help them, in their darkened hour. There were many reformers prior to the ones mentioned, that spoke out against the sins of the church, the sins of the priest, the things that went on behind closed doors; but most of those were martyred. Therefore, it was necessary for God to restore light gradually. If William Branham would have come on the scene in 1500 A.D.. people would have ran from him, rather than rejoice over what he taught. Why? Because everything that he preached was so adverse to the Catholic Church’s teaching. they would have perceived it to be completely fanaticism. However, when Martin Luther came out, after Wycliff had been martyred because of his part, he was a man that knew the Catholic Church inside and out. God had been dealing with him in a supernatural way, instilling in him what faith really is, and what it is supposed to do, and so forth. Therefore when that became a genuine revelation and understanding in his life, Luther knew it was time to sell all, and go purchase that field, as is described in Matthew 13:44, one of the parables Jesus used. He found the treasure in the field, FAITH; it had been there all along. No wonder he said, “The just shall live by faith. “When you stop to think of the thousands in Europe, that had lived for so many centuries knowing nothing but faith in the church, and faith in the Pope, you can see how a true revelation would affect such a man. God just simply gave him a true revelation of what the apostle Paul meant, in Romans 1:17. That brought about the first step of what we now call, “The Reformation.” The revelation God gave John Calvin, brought about another step of the Reformation. Of course, there were many little fragments that came out of the Calvinist movement; but when you condense them all, you come out with what is a major Baptist doctrine; and let me hasten to remind you that it is also a true Bible doctrine. I am referring to the doctrine of the eternal security of the believer. Some refer to it like this, “Once saved, always saved.” Some like to pretend that there is no such doctrine taught in the Bible; but I find it taught clearly throughout the New Testament. I will only refer you to one verse at this time though, Ephesians 4:30, which says, “And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are SEALED unto the day of redemption.” Do not try to preach that in a Methodist Church though, they will climb the walls. They do not like to hear it. Like I have said many times, You will never be born into this natural world but one time; I defy you to say that you have been here twice. There is no such thing as reincarnation. Likewise, you will never be born into the family of God but one time either. When you are truly spiritually born, that is the only spiritual birth you will ever have. That is not saying that there cannot be sick spells in your experience; there may be many; but you cannot be unborn. You need to get that settled, lest the devil torment you with the thought of such a thing. Just study the teachings of the early Church: there is no way they ever taught that a person could be saved today make a little mistake tomorrow and you are lost, and have to be saved all over again. Do you know how that came about? After the tare spirit got into the ranks of Christendom, in the second century, the seed of Satan and the seed of God were growing side by side. The sad part of it is, the church world today does not know which is which, and what is what. One part of this New Testament is speaking to the elect, the other scriptures are talking to the tares. Remember though, it is fact that the tare element are the predominant majority of what the world looks upon as Christendom today. The tare spirit is what actually forms every denomination, controls it, manipulates it, and rules it. The tare spirit (in Satan’s children) is what sets up against Holy Ghost progress, and warns the believer, Don’t do this, and don’t do that; that is of the devil. That is how Satan works. That spirit of Satan is always right there, blocking the way, telling you it is the wrong way. He can hinder the plan of God, but he cannot prevent it. Hallelujah! We are on the winning side.
BREAKING THROUGH GREAT DARKNESS
Following close behind Martin Luther, was a man by the name of John Knox. He picked up the sword of the gospel, (the same faith,) to break away more of the darkness that had enveloped the Church through that long period of time. He reached in the New Testament, (the second covenant) and pulled out a doctrine, “What is to be, will be.”, We call it predestination. When you really study the scriptures carefully, you will come to the understanding that God knew before there ever was a star or anything, what would be and what would not be. That is why the Bible declares your names were written in the Lamb’s book of life, before the foundation of the world. The critics of our modern age of religion will always go to the book of Revelation (22:19) and say, Well, what about this, Bro. Jackson? They misquote the verse and say, “God will take his name out of the book of life.” It does not say that. The Holy Spirit was letting John take a look at the Church going through time. God knew the Church ranks would eventually be filled with a tare seed: and they are the ones that take from, and add to the word of God. Therefore, even though they have a part in everything the Church does in this life, God will take away whatever part they may have imagined to have in the life beyond this life. Believe me saints, it is not the elect child of God that tears the word of God all to pieces; it is the tares, that are always saying, “You know God did not mean that, this, or something else.” That is exactly how the serpent did Eve; and his seed are still doing likewise. Any time something goes afoul, you can rest assured, it is that tare spirit that does it, because he does it to get at the seed of God. When we study the Bible in its truthful makeup, it tells us that the child of God is chastened for doing wrong. Hebrews 8:5-8,tells us how God deals with His children. “My son,despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou an rebuked of Him: For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the Father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, (all of Goes children) then are ye bastards, and not sons.” Saints: That is what the Bible declares; so who can argue with it? Does God have to chasten a tare? No, he is not His child; so why should He? The devil’s children get theirs later on, in the lake of fire. The second parable of Matthew 13, tells us, that once that seed of Satan gets into the Church, it was never to be separated until the end. The Lutheran hour did not separate it. When the true seed came out to follow Luther. tares came along too. When Knox came along with predestination, the tares came too. When John Wesley came out of the church of England with the teachings of sanctification, (which was more light) the tares came too. When the Holy Ghost began to move in a sovereign way, to put back into the Church the baptism of the Holy Ghost, in the measure she had been without for such a long time, the tares came along with the children of God, and duplicated every manifestation of the Holy Ghost they saw. When the revelation of the Godhead was dropped down into the Pentecostal ranks, that was the Spirit of God giving that revelation. However, because the trinity side had picked up this thing about speaking in tongues being the initial evidence that a person has received the baptism of the Holy Ghost, that tare spirit said, This one God teaching is of the devil. Nevertheless, the true seed moved on with water baptism in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ; and a significant number of tares fell right in among them. Brothers and sisters, it will be like that right to the end; and only God Himself knows every one in the congregation of the saints; whether they are His children or not.
A TURNING POINT
World War 2, was a turning point for politics, for nations, and for religion. When it came to a close, it was time for Jews to come out of dispersion; because God was going to give them back a link portion of their land. At that same time, it was time that there should be a message come forth, to call the children of God out of these Babylonian systems of religion, and back to The true word of God. While the Baptists were against the Methodists, because of sanctification, and the Methodists against the Baptists, because of eternal security, and the Church of Christ against them all, for one reason or another, there was no place for the Spirit of God to work in them. This sort of thing is what the Reformation truths had finally produced in the world, as the older generations left the scene. Each element started out right; but Satan made sure they were never able to come together, with the truth they each had; so that it could produce what God sent it forth for. No wonder that God could see Protestantism as a bunch of harlots. That is why I read Revelation 17, so you could be thinking about how God looks upon this multitude of religious systems, as we go on into the message. That woman, decked out in that beautiful attire, with all the jewelry, diamonds and gold all over her, is quite a picture; but as I said, That was not a picture of Roman Catholicism in the dark hours of Europe, because the political and geographical structure of the Roman Empire had not yet evolved into that full identity. In Revelation 17, she is described as sitting upon a scarlet colored beast, having seven heads and ten horns. That is what she is today; revived, and restored. The battlefields of WWI and WW2 are mere memorial spots now, of bygone days. They have formed a unity, whereby that area of Europe will never be ravished by a war, wherein those people will be fighting among themselves. We are rapidly moving forward to the fulfillment of what that 17th chapter points to; “I will show unto thee the judgment of the great whore.” God is definitely going to judge that old whore, that mothered these systems into existence, and I do not believe it is very far off in the future. In Protestantism, 90 percent of their Doctors of Divinity are trinitarians; They do not want a thing to do with a one God message; and there is no way you could have ever convinced them that God was going to send a prophet to this age; because their excuse is like all the rest, Prophets only come to the Jews. Like we have already explained, when the time came that the Old Covenant given to the Jews was to close out, God did not send another writing prophet, He sent a preaching prophet by the name of John the Baptist. He is referred to by Jesus, in this way, “The law and the prophets were until John: (For salvation) since that time the kingdom of God is preached.” Meaning there will never be another writing prophet come on the scene. The Branham following does not like to hear a statement like that; but I cannot be concerned about whether they like what I say or not. William Marrion Branham was the spirit of Elijah for our day; but he was not another writing prophet. He did not give us another book of the Bible. He was a preaching prophet, just like John was.The Epistles of the New Testament were written after the birth of the Church, and they contain all the New Testament Church doctrines, but theses systems have stripped them all out, and they were out of the Bible. God sent various men to take all the theological wrappings off of it, so people could get back into the Bible, little by little, not to scare them half to death. The sad part of it is, when the Lutherans got back in, they could only see a few verses, and the rest was a closed book, and it was the same way, right on down through Wesley, and even the Pentecostals. Any time they build a system of organization around the portion of light they see, they shut God out. Therefore, when we look at Gentile Christendom at the close of WW2, them was no way Jesus could have come for a Church that looked like it had been washed in the Word, and had become spotless, without a wrinkle; because it was scattered throughout all this denominationalism, which is the organized structures of the effects of the Reformation. That is why God sent a prophet to this age; to get the true Church out of all of that. Let us just look at Malachi 4:6, and read only the part the angel spoke to Zacharias, (in Luke, chapter 1)- “And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children.” When you read Luke, chapter 1, where the angel quoted that to Zacharias, he stopped without quoting the rest of the verse. John the Baptist did exactly that. He turned the heart’s of the Judaistic fathers of that hour, to a child-like faith that received the New Covenant. These were Peter, James, John, Matthew, Mark, Luke, Paul, and on and on. They are the ones that wrote from the book of Acts, through the many epistles of the New Testament. By the hour at the close of WW2, any Gentile church system would tell you, Oh yes, that is the written word of God; but look how they interpret it. The Church of Christ wants no speaking in tongues. Do you know why? They say that was for the apostles. They will even endeavor to prove to you that only 12 men actually spoke in tongues, the apostles. That is complete deception; every last one of those in the upper room, (120) were filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. As I said earlier, the languages they were speaking were not unknown languages. When they came into the streets speaking in other tongues, there were Orthodox Jews present, from 16 different nations, that heard at least some of them speaking in the language spoken where they were born. Some were Greek, some were Coptic, some were Latin, some were this, and that; but they heard the wonderful things of God spoken in a language they understood. Yes, it was supernatural. God spoke to those Orthodox Jews in a language they understood, yet to the home bunch of Jews, it was stammering lips, jibber jabber. That is what a doctor of divinity, back about 1952, called it; He preached down here in a Main Street Methodist church; and because some of those people had been in some of Bro. Branham’s meetings, they had asked the question, “What about these Pentecostals? What about these tongue speaking people?” The man went home and wrote a tract called, “Jibber Jabbers, Tongue Talkers, and Snake Handlers.” They passed some of those out at the Branham Tabernacle, and I will never forget, Bro. Branham’s response. He had been away in a meeting, and when he returned home, he skinned that man alive, right from the pulpit. Nevertheless, it was necessary that God to do something, to straighten up this mess existing in Gentile religion. He knew 400 years before Christ. that this total dispensation, by the time it reached our day, would be in a chaotic mess; and He saw that the Gentile believers, or rather the adherers to the faith of this second covenant, would all be so chopped up, and mixed up, it would be necessary for Him to send that God identifying Elijah spirit, to call His true children out of that mess. Once this covenant was taken from the Jewish realm, and given to the Gentiles, it was to remain among Gentiles until God redeemed all the Gentiles that were ever to benefit from the Gospel of Christ. It (the gospel) would also have to be restored back to apostolic order, before it could go back to the Jews; so this is what we are endeavoring to examine in this message; the true message of the Bible.
A WORK OF GOD IN OUR DAY
Believers in this age, are the children of the Pentecostal fathers, who were the writers of the New Testament. We will now read the last half of Malachi 4:6, because it pertains to what has been taking place in this generation. “And the heart of the children (that is you and me.) to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” You could read that like this; Before I smite the earth with judgment. I was a Methodist. Some of you were Catholics, and some were Baptists, and so forth. When you know no different, God does not hold you accountable, if you are genuinely desiring to walk with Him. When He gives you an opportunity to see light, and you fail to walk in it, then it is sin. No, he does not look upon it like going out and getting drunk. In fact, He looks upon it as worse. The sin of unbelief is the worst of all sins mentioned in the Bible. God can deliver an alcoholic, but these religious-holics are hard to deal with. They are so set and dyed in their ways, and so proud of what they were raised to be, yet most of them do not even know God. In 1st John 2:4, it says, “He that saith, I know Him,(God) and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” Saints, that was not me that said that; we do not need to accuse people, and judge them; the Bible itself does that. The word of God, calls such a person a liar. That is why the spirit of Elijah was to come again, to make known the true identity of God, and point sincere people in the right direction; Just as the spirit of Elijah on John the Baptist opened and introduced the dispensation of this new covenant, so did that same spirit on another man, do the same work of God in our generation. It did come to the Jews first, because they were the ones who had the law and the oracles of God for that dispensation; but now the Gentiles are the guardians of Christianity, so God sent the Elijah anointing to us, to get our revelation straightened out; before the end. When the Jewish nation, who should have embraced it with great joy, turned it away: God gave it to the Gentiles in its original truth, and now that it has reached this hour, when there are true children of God in the earth that have been saved, some in this, and some in that, yet they have never had the opportunity to walk in a true revelation of God’s word, God had to do something to give them their chance; so He sent Elijah. I am not saying anything to un-Christianize you; if your heart is right; My only purpose is to make you see that God did not save you in the Baptist church, just to make a good Baptist out of you. He saved you because He loved you; and wants you to walk with Him in truth. God’s walk with Him in truth. God’s ultimate aim in saving anyone, is that they, as an individual person, will follow Him. He has never saved anyone just to keep that person from going to hell. God is taking the veil off of His word, that was put there by the spirit of antichrist working through Catholicism; so we no longer have to walk in darkness; trying to serve Him. The God identifying spirit of Elijah came to this generation in, or upon a man by the name of William Marrion Branham, not to make him our god, but to get us out of the darkness of denominationalism. The Holy Ghost anointed that man with a measure of His Spirit, that was not characterized in any of the men God used in the Reformation, coming out of the Dark Ages. Not even the apostle Paul, as great as his service to God was, possessed the measure of the Holy Ghost that was upon Bro. Branham, for the Church of that hour of time had no need to be made aware of all the things that the Church of this hour of time needs to know. God revealed in every age of time, only that which the Church in that age had need of. The early Church did not need to know the great truths of the book of Revelation, given to the apostle John in 96 A.D., to be revealed here at the end time. Neither did they have any need to be called out of denominational systems; for they all had the same revelation taught to them by Jesus and His apostles. The word of wisdom was periodically evident in that hour, but not exercised in the measure it was in this present age. God saved the greater manifestation of that, until this end time. He did it because He knew He would be dealing with an apostate, Gentile picture of things. Theologians, well educated and well organized, were so entrenched and rooted in rituals and dogmas, it required something out of the ordinary to get their attention. God did not use an educated man though; He used an ordinary country fellow with very little education, in a very extraordinary way. Brothers and sisters, when that little man stood, anointed, you could have been sitting in the cloak room with the door closed, and if God had a purpose in it, he would have still seen you there; and called you by name. He could have even told you your address, and discerned your sickness; but that still did not make him God; that was the Holy Ghost using him, to shock some Gentile people, sitting in religious systems, into the reality that God was on the scene to do something for them. First and foremost, He wanted to get us back into the Bible; and let us see it just as it was taught to the early Church. Bro. Branham was not sent to rewrite it; he came on the scene to re-confirm it. It was already written; just the way God wanted it written. By the time Christianity went into the second age, the New Testament covenant was a completed book, with the book of Revelation already added to it. When the Holy Ghost spoke to John, on the Isle of Patmos, giving him this great vision of events that would transpire at future intervals of time: that was the last time God ever dealt with mankind in this way. Everything was written then, that needed to be written, as pertaining to Bible scriptures. When the book of Revelation was added to the record of the scriptures, the Church moved off into the second, then the third ages, and the devil really went to work on her. For almost 1900 years, the book of Revelation, (which was the last writing of the New Testament record) was a misunderstood book. The more some people studied it, the more confused they became; until some finally said, The more you stir around in it, the muddier it becomes. Others said, John must have been having a nightmare, when he wrote that book. I just have to say this, It was supposed to look that way to them. I have said many times.
The book of Revelation is God’s love letter to the Church. While she was still walking in the light of truth, God gave it to her; but did not give her the understanding of it. It was His way of saying, You carry this until the proper hour comes, and I will tell you to open, and read it. Well, I am glad to report to you, that the hour has arrived, for the true Church of the living God to open, read, and understand it.
BELIEVING-BUT NOT UNDERSTANDING
I want to take a few minutes and say some things pertaining to what I have observed; since I came into this message of truth. I remember when Pentecostals from both ranks, (oneness and trinity) as well as independents, Baptists, Lutherans, and all the rest, came to Bro. Branham’s meetings; and how they reacted when they saw how God used that little man. I have seen them sit with tears streaming down their face; and say, “That is God! That is God! Oh hallelujah, That is God!”, over and over, again, and again. I have witnessed that, but most of those people are still a million miles from following a revelation of truth. You just have to say, They believed what they were witnessing had to be a manifestation of God; but they never did really understand what He was doing it for. Now I wish to say something to a lot of the Branham following, hoping that those who need to hear or read what I am going to say, will somehow do so. There are some of you, that have gone completely wild with what they think they saw, and what they think they heard. Some saw the man just for a little while before he was taken off the scene, and they immediately said, “Oh yes, that is God”; but they made the man they were listening to, their God. The man himself was not God. He never will be God; but God, (in the office-work of the Holy Ghost) manifested Himself through him, in a way that had not been witnessed by mortal mankind, since the days of the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, as He walked on earth among them. The way he touched the scriptures of the New Testament, was to re-confirm, or to take off the shackles and blindfolds that held people’s minds in darkness and blindness, and allow them to get back to the true word of God; instead of believing it like the Roman Catholic Church teaches it. He was definitely not pointing to another book. Neither did he have any intention of writing another book, to replace or add to the Bible we have already. He had more respect for the written scriptures, than any man I had ever been privileged to listen to; so that kind of man is not out to replace, nor add to that which God had written already. He never preached a sermon without going to the Bible for scripture to back up what he preached. I do not know how many messages they have on tapes now; but I do know this, If Bro. Branham preached them, you will find that he went to the Bible for scripture, in every one of them. It had to be that way, if he was to turn the children back to the fathers. Who were the fathers he was pointing us back to? Paul, Peter, James, John, and all of those first age apostles. Through the years, as I was privileged to hear him, over and over, I have heard him speak certain things in dual statements. I will never forget when I first began to hear him; back in 1952. One time, he made a statement like this, You are born again when you are saved; you receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost for power. Well, we know that is an Assembly of God teaching; but it is not a New Testament teaching. You are only born again when you have received the Holy Ghost, according to the teaching of the apostles of Christ. Because of the initial evidence teaching among Pentecostals: some would accuse us of saying that everyone that is born again has to speak in tongues, and we do not say that. However, the Holy Ghost that can make you speak in tongues, is the same Holy Ghost that seals true believers in the body of Christ. Many people have been anointed with a certain measure of the Holy Spirit, and if they would have followed after truth, instead of just being contented to speak in tongues and have a good time: the Holy Ghost would have led them right on into the new birth; but there has to be some, to fulfill the words of Paul, in the 2nd chapter of 2nd Thessalonians. That is, when people receive not a love for the truth, God Himself sends them strong delusion, that they may believe Satan’s lies and be damned. Since the Holy Ghost is God Himself, He can do with Himself whatever He pleases, with whomever He pleases; and we cannot dictate terms to Him. We are at the end time, when that spirit of iniquity is to be dealt with, as God separates the two spirits; so He is the one that is sending the strong delusion, that men would believe a lie; because they received not the love of the truth. The Holy Ghost is the Spirit of truth; therefore, He is not interested in just giving people a lot of thrills. Tares believe certain things; but when it comes to a revelation of truth: they just simply cannot understand, no matter what they hear. Oh, they can repeat what they hear; but they do not have the Revelator inside, to make it real to them.
Brothers and sisters, it was necessary for Bro. Branham to deal with the ONE GOD revelation; for that was the first thing the devil began to attack, as the Church was led into that terrible dark period of time. This is the revelation, around which all other revealed truth revolves. Without a revelation of the Godhead, there is an awful lot of scripture that just simply does not add up right. Water baptism in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ was another Bible truth that had to be restored to the Church, before she could go very far in adorning herself for the long awaited Bridegroom. The Assemblies of God just wept and shouted for joy, when he would stand on their platforms discerning all kinds of diseases and problems. They would sit there spellbound. Most of the time, if he would refer to baptism in the open public places, he would just refer to it, and then quickly move on; but when they began to find out how he baptized, in his home church, they dried their eyes and said, “The gift is of God; but his teachings are I wrong.” When he began to say he was against organization in the body of Christ: they began to say, “That humble little fellow has been bitten by a spirit.” It has always been that way. Truth is not a welcome thing in most places. It never has been cherished by the masses; because it does not come down the road in beautiful little boxes and pretty wrappings. Most of the time, truth is crude. That is why God used a little man whose language was so common the educated people said, “He doesn’t even know how to put his sentences together.” He taught eternal security, and the Pentecostals said, “That doctrine is out of the pit.” They want nothing to do with eternal security, nor predestination. Shortly before Jimmy Swaggart’s secret life was exposed, he taught a series on his T.V. program attacking predestination. One man has written an article belittling some of the former men in Pentecost; telling how they slipped, and how they fell; and when he came to Bro. Branham, he left it as though he was a great man of God at one time, but because he made himself a prophet, the Elijah of Mal.4:5 & 6, that caused him to slip out of the grace of God. Brothers and sisters, he WAS the Elijah of Mal. 4:5 &-6 for our day. He was God’s prophet for our hour of time. He DID bring a message to this age is the message of the Bible. I want to say to those who have taken his quotes and made another Bible, and choose that above the Bible, You are entertaining an antichristian spirit. If you go back to that Spoken Word Book, (the Seven Seals book) every time he said anything related to the white horse rider, he had to get its basis right out of here. (The Bible); When the interpretation was made known, what the breaking of that first seal was, and that white horse rider going forth, it was already riding, back in that first age, trying to get in, trying to conquer. It was the spirit of antichrist, the mystery of iniquity, the spirit that was motivating all those false prophets, (antichrists) that John wrote about in 90 A.D. Do we have to get out of the Bible just because we have heard a prophet tell us what that white horse rider was? Billy Graham came out with his version of the four horsemen some time ago. Where did he place those horse riders? In the dark tribulation hour. Now the church world can believe that if they want to, but the real children of God know that those four horsemen have already been riding. We are still living under the effects of the fourth one, because he is galloping right on through this age. and riding hard. His rider is the devil; and he has a message. It is a false unity message. From a distance, a gray horse can look white, when the sun hits it a certain way. You have to get close, and really look close, to see the difference. That is why it did not take a theologian to interpret it. It just took a man who had that eagle spirit; to really discern, and see what it was. Saints, this is no time to be laying your Bible aside; it still has valuable nuggets in it to be discovered. It is foolish, for anyone to use it to establish the correct form of water baptism, the Godhead, and the need for that Elijah anointing, and then lay it aside saying, “We do not need that any more.” That was not what the spirit of Elijah came to do. Remember, he was not a writing prophet, he was a preaching prophet. His prophetic office was vindicated in a dynamic way. His ministry was a sign to this Gentile church world; but they will never see it again like that. Most of them will go on and die in their spiritual blindness; because they had their chance and rejected it, just like Judaism in the days of Christ. No sooner was his ministry manifested in the earth, as a sign to the true Church, when here came the glossiola. Then came the Charismatics; and the first thing we knew, the Roman Catholic ecumenical group joined them, and they all became one. The Catholic Church and the World Council of Churches have combined for this last day. The church world is being propelled by the gray horse rider; so no wonder the Bible is a closed book, to so many today. The Holy Ghost will never lead you away from the Bible; so if you have left it, what is leading you? I will let you answer that yourselves; for the answer is obvious. It has been the Holy Ghost, for almost 500 years, leading the Church back into the Bible; the book the Catholic Church was completely out of. The Elijah of Malachi 4:5-6, part B, was to turn us back to the faith of our fathers; and that faith is found written in the New Testament. I am not telling anyone not to read the Spoken Word Books; but I will say this, The devil will sit on your shoulder while you read them; and he will keep telling you, This man is God. He is going to come back again; and do so and so. Therefore, without the Holy Ghost to keep your thinking in the right channel, you are very likely to believe what he tells you; for to the natural mind it could sound logical. A man traveling, from the state of Georgia, passing through a western state, just a short time before Bro. Branham passed off the scene, was going to one of his meetings. Evening came on, so he stopped and obtained a Motel room for the night. That night, when he went to bed and turned out the light, he heard an audible voice say, William Branham is God. It startled him. He listened, and again he heard the same words, William Branham is God. I have forgotten how many times he said that voice spoke those same words to him; but finally, he raised up in bed and rebuked it in the name of Jesus Christ, and it stopped. He went on to the state where Bro. Branham was holding the meeting, and asked to see Bro. Branham. He told him what had happened; and how it scared him. Then he told Bro. Branham where he had stayed all night, and repeated the words he had heard; and Bro. Branham told him the name of the motel; and told him who had stayed in that same room the night before, that believed that teaching. Well saints, that same spirit is still in the earth today. Just remember, when the true seed heard this man’s message and came out of Babylon, tares came out too. Tares can get excited, just like anyone else. In fact, they can be very aggressive at times. The truth is, they can create more emotion, more excitement and activity than the true seed who really appreciates truth. Many times, it is the nature of the true seed, just to listen, observe, and sometimes even be very withdrawn. However, sooner or later, the Holy Spirit that is leading them, will cause them to examine what they are hearing, in the light of the revealed truth they have heard; and they will send such a spirit on its way. The Holy Ghost will never let a true child of God go too far, without dealing with such an antichrist spot. We hear often, of people going back into the world of sin, after having lived what appeared to be a Christian life for years; but we cannot say they were ever Children of God because of this great multitude of tares out here doing everything Christians are doing. God is the one that sorts out all of that, when the time comes though, so all we need to be concerned about, is that we ourselves walk in the light of the truth we have. The Elijah for our day, because he was to turn us back to the teachings of the early Church apostles, has been severely criticized for teaching as he did: but God was not going to allow this gospel to go back to the Jews, in the perverted mess Gentiles had it in. Furthermore, there had to be some Gentile Christians prepared to meet the Lord Jesus Christ when he comes for the rapture; and what He is coming for, has to be just like the original Church seen in the book of Acts; so you can see why God had to send a prophet. When God took the New Covenant away from the Jews and gave it to the Gentiles, it was to remain with them until God gets ready to go back to the Jews. This covenant, is the covenant of salvation. While it is laying among the Gentiles, God gets a Church. That Church is to be taken out of here in a rapture, to be with Jesus. Then the Holy Spirit that has been here with the Gentiles will go back to the Jewish people. When He goes back to the Jews, He does not add more to the Church; but He does give the Jewish people the benefits of what this covenant was for. He will seal a 144,000 with the seal of the living God. You see that in the 7th chapter of Revelation; and in the 11th chapter, you see how He does it. (Through the ministry of the two witnesses). Once again, Elijah comes upon the scene; but this time another prophet is seen with him, Moses. God is moved by His word, to close each dispensation to the people He is working with, in a dynamic way. Look what He did with the Jews in that hour, what a dynamic manifestation of His Spirit was witnessed, and the quality of men He used. It is all in the New Testament. He will close this Gentile Church dispensation in a mighty way also; for there are still seven thunders in the 10th chapter of Revelation, that have not yet uttered their voices; When they do, it will not change one iota of the truth we already have. In fact, the only people that will hear what they have to say, will be people that are back in the Bible, with a proper understanding of what is written therein. Do you think organized religion will hear them? No. They did not hear the revelation of the seals, why would they hear this? Billy Graham will go his way, all the rest of them will go their way; and the little bride Church will soon go with Jesus. Hallelujah! That is what I am looking for. I am truly glad that there has been something done to turn a few people around, and give them an opportunity to see the things that are right. The things that have been written right here in the Bible all the time.
PARABLE OF JESUS FOR LAODICEAN AGE
There are yet a few points I want to make along the same lines we have been dealing with; and then we will look at something from a little different viewpoint. As I have already stated, our purpose in this message, is to call your attention to the fact that the message of the Bible is still the same. That is why we are using the title, THE BIBLE-AND ITS MESSAGE; we are living in a day when religion in general is so far away from the message of the Bible, there is only a few places where truth can be heard. The Lutherans only rehearse their past. The Methodists, the Baptists, the Pentecostals, and all the rest do likewise. What their forefathers had was good for their day; when God was bringing the Church out of that long period of spiritual darkness, but you cannot just sit around rehearsing what your forefathers believed, and be ready to meet the Lord when He comes. Walking with God, is an ever advancing walk; you do not just rest on what someone else before you had. In other words, religion today, is a sad picture; for these systems of religion have completely sold out to the devil. They would scoff at the idea, but it is a fact anyhow. The things they do not want to have any part of, are the things that are very evident, to the people that are aware that God has done something in the earth in our day. I want to read to you out of Matthew 13. The church world does not realize that the very Bible they carry, prophecies of the spiritual condition of this hour. They read it and do not understand what it means. It is the 7th parable recorded in this chapter that I want us to look at. Jesus spoke these seven parables all at one time; but their application stretches out over the entire grace age dispensation, one for each Church age; and we are living in the last one. We are living in the Laodicean age, and we are living in the closing years of it. When Jesus spoke these parables, He had one thought in mind, and I am sure that in the end time, only those who really are the true people of God, will understand what He was pointing to. It is the 47th verse, where Jesus began to speak of the conditions of this 7th Church Age. Let us read it, “Again, the kingdom of heaven (talking about this certain period of time called the dispensation of grace that ends when the rapture takes place.) is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind.” This New Covenant age, when The Holy Ghost is calling out individuals who will make up what is called the kingdom of God, is referred to as the kingdom of heaven. The kingdom of heaven refers to a certain period of time, while the kingdom of God speaks of a spiritual kingdom in the heart’s of individual people who surrender their lives to the Spirit of God, and thereby become known as the children of God, during this dispensation of time. This 7th parable points to a certain time within the Laodicean age, when it will have its application; it does not speak of the whole age. We might say this; As WW2 closed, there was a definite move of the spirit of God in practically all circles of denominationalism. That is why we had Billy Graham, Oral Roberts, A.A. Allen, Tommy Osborne, and various other evangelists with their type of message. Most of them just preached a salvational message. There is nothing wrong with a salvation message. That is part of the great commission; but do not forget, a salvational message is not all them is to preach, of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Salvation for his soul, is the beginning point of acquainting lost mankind with a cure for his separation from God. In introducing him to the saving grace of God, made available through Jesus Christ being offered at Calvary, he has a chance to get started in the right direction; but once a man or woman has been brought to the point of accepting God’s plan of salvation, there are other things in the word of God, these people need, in order to grow in spiritual stature. An awful lot of those who accept God’s plan of salvation go for years hearing nothing beyond the type of message that drew them to the Lord. This is as far as a lot of denominationalism has ever taken anyone. In fact, the very things they could have grown on, most of them pitched in a ditch; (so to speak) saying, “We cannot preach that; it causes division and separation.” Right there, is where they stopped following God. You would never do a baby like that, in the natural. When you withhold food from it, you are denying it what its little body requires to grow on. You would never expect a child to grow into adulthood, with nothing more than a milk bottle for its source of food. Neither will your inner man (your spirit) grow, if it never receives anything more than the milk of the word of God. Let me finish reading this parable, Verse 48,”Which, when it was full,(the net) they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away.” All of this symbolically represents that great gospel net, that, in the beginning of the 1950’s, as the era of WW2 subsided, and people began to get hold of themselves, the Spirit of God began to move. God really showed mercy to all, in every realm of belief. He was not a respecter of persons in any of them. Within their various systems, they fought the various doctrines, but behind it all, God’s mercy was made available to humanity, to accept Jesus Christ as their Savior. That is what this parable points to. As for the illustration, we know a group of fishermen can only cast a net and go so far. Eventually they have to grade the fish; picking out what the market requires, and casting the rest away somewhere. There is a law in the maritime realm, that whatever species of fish it is, it has to meet certain measurement requirements, otherwise the species’ ability to replenish itself is thwarted. Let us just transpose that to a spiritual picture. We know the Bible says God is not willing that any should perish; but neither is he willing that any should miss the mark. There is a requirement in the scriptures that every true Christian must attain to; Therefore, when it says, “They sat down and began to gather the good into baskets”, what did they throw away? They were throwing away something other than just sticks. There were certain things rejected because they did not meet the qualification requirements; measurements and such like. That literally means, that as that great gospel net, back in the 50’s, and early 60’s was cast out, it caught a lot of attention; but that was not the whole story. I remember how the convicting power of God moved, in the various services. A man could take one little verse of scripture and preach a little salvation type message, and conviction would hit a whole crowd of people. They would cry and scream, and try to rush to Christ. Needless to say, it is not like that now. There came a time within this period of ingathering, that the scene changed. Right in the midst of all of it, God sent forth a major fisherman; and He revealed to him the scriptural requirements of what He would accept and reject. That is why we consistently proclaim that there is a message in the earth today; a message people deny, refuse, blaspheme, and speak evil of, saying, “It is of the devil”; that is doing a great work of God. When it is too late for some of you; then you will wake up to reality and realize that there was a message; and you treated it just like the scribes and Pharisees treated the message Jesus delivered to them. When you fail to make it in, you will know that you had your chance, and missed it. As we look back to the parable, the good were gathered into vessels; and the bad were cast away. Therefore, I want you to pay attention to verse 49; which says, “So shall it be at the end of the world: (Meaning, as time runs out and God is ready to set in motion certain things by which He will judge the world, in His wrath.)the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, and shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.” This lets me know, the hand of God will guide men, preachers, but remember, behind every man, whatever he says, or does, there is a spirit-being directing him. His ministry can be used for many things; but behind it, and in it all, it is always designed to get God’s chosen, elected people into the place where they are supposed to be. Verse 51, “Jesus saith unto them, (the disciples) Have ye understood all these things? They say unto Him, Yea, Lord.” Just imagine, there sat Peter, James, John, Matthew, and those other disciples that heard these parables, and when He said, “Have ye understood all these things?” (Do you know what they mean?) They say to Him, “Yea, Lord.” That was not you and I sitting there. That was those men sitting there. They said, “Yea, Lord.” But remember, the separation was not supposed to occur in their lifetime. It was to be somewhere in the future. They would no longer be around. Let us notice what else He said to them. “Then said He unto them, Therefore every scribe which is instructed unto the kingdom of heaven, (still dealing with the dispensation of time) is like unto a man that is an householder, (A man who possesses something) Which bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old.” Brothers and sisters, let me say this, William Marrion Branham, (the messenger to this age) a man rejected by denominationalism, because thcy despised his teachings, was the first man this side of the Dark Ages, that took the things God had revealed to the reformers coming out of the Dark Ages, and put them all into one message, and presented it to the bride of Christ. Luther, Wesley, Calvin, nor none of those men we refer to as reformers ever taught anything new, that had never been taught before. What they did, was, each one dealt with an old truth that was taught by the early church, had been in the scriptures, and had been lost during the Dark Age period the Church went through. You can read it for yourself. Those men dealt with these Bible truths one by one. That is why certain doctrines are associated with certain of these Reformers; simply because God restored that particular Bible truth through that particular vessel.Those truths were lost one by one, going into the Dark Ages; so God restored them one by one, coming out of the Dark Ages. Those men were each one used, to restore a major, original truth taught by the apostles of Christ. They were not lost from the word of God; just from the understanding of believers. After they were restored, and the time came that this Laodicean age was to come into full focus, where we could turn to Revelation and begin to see this age and hour of time we are now living in, God sent a major scribe. That is what he was. Not only was he a messenger, an angel messenger, according to Revelation 10:7, but he was a prophet messenger, according to Malachi 4:5-6, in B part; and he was a scribe, that fits the picture portrayed in this parable, according to the way Jesus closed it out. When that man’s ministry came to a certain place within time, then is when he began to reach into the word of God, and as I have repeated over and over, he pointed some people back to the written word; and took off of it the carnal veil placed upon it through denominational interpretation, which were brought about by ignorance, because of handed down traditions. All of that cast a curtain of ignorance over the entire written word of God. Did his ministry change the church world? No, sir. It did not change the church world at all. There have been some people that had an ear to hear though, because something inside their heart’s was reaching out to touch God. Therefore God touched their heart’s, and caused them to see what He had called this man to do. He truly brought out of the store house of God’s word, old truths. First he took the things of the reformers. Not just one, Not just two, Not just three, but all of them; and showed where they all fit together in the word of God. Then, because of the hour of time, and this parable, he brought forth new revelations that had not been taught before; even in Paul’s hour. God reserved them for this hour. One of the new revelations he brought forth, is what we refer to as “Serpent Seed.” It reveals what took place in the Garden of Eden, that caused the fall of man from his original state. The denominational doctors of divinity climb a wall, when serpent seed is mentioned; but truth always prevails, when God is ready for His true people to know the truth; so they will just have to go ahead and climb a wall, and keep on believing the serpent gave Eve a nice juicy red apple from a plant life tree, but we know what the serpent really did do, that caused God to curse him. Those great, educated men said, “That man is crazy”; but any person that has an ear to hear what the Spirit saith to the Church, will say, That is the only thing that makes sense.
SOME OTHER-NEW REVELATIONS
We go to the book of Revelation, for a look at some other new things the apostles of Christ did not teach in their day. The revelation of six seals, that we read about in Revelation, chapters 5 and 6, are some of those new things no one else had ever presented a true understanding of; but before we get into the seals, I want to go to Revelation 3:14, and get a true picture of this Laodicean Church age. I will never forget how Bro. Branham, when he was alive, would repeatedly refer to the various verses in this setting, speaking of how the Laodicean CHURCH AGE people were naked, and blind, and how they have been exhorted to repent. He would also speak of how they are lukewarm; so let us analyze it, and see if we can get a picture of why they are lukewarm. If they are lukewarm, there has to be a reason, and I believe we can discover that reason, by examining where we are right now. We have watched things develop into a very tragic picture, in the last 20 some years since Bro. Branham’s death. We have seen a great multitude of people all over the world, get hold of his teachings; but not know how to read them. Therefore, they are worse off after they read many of those books, than they were before they received them. They project a carnal picture of what they are reading. Anything they do not understand, they treat it as unimportant; or they allow their misunderstanding to project some wild revelation that only a select few are supposed to be able to understand. There are a lot of things in God’s word, that people of other ages had no need to understand; but you can believe this, It is all written for someone, somewhere in time to understand. That is the way God works. There were prophecies written in the Old Testament, that were related to the first advent of Christ; and every time the rabbis and elders of prior centuries would try to read them, they could only project their own natural views; for God was not revealing them in their fullness, until the generation came that was to benefit by their fulfillment. They all had their own school of thought; just like your doctors of divinity do today; but their school of thought was not worth two cents, or they would not have rejected the very One those prophecies pointed to. When it comes time for their fulfillment, people are literally taken by surprise. Just think of how people believed certain things would be, as they would read the Bible years ago; and then think of how wrong they were, when God brought those things into fulfillment. As we look at the overall picture of the word of God, we are surely made to realize that God is still in control no matter how much Satan interferes. It is just that He has His predetermined time to bring each phase of His redemption plan into fulfillment; and there is no way we can hurry it up. We are living in the year 1989: therefore, the year 2000 A.D. is really not very far away. The reason I say this, is because I am convinced that the Laodiccan age started somewhere around the turn of the 19th century, when Azusa Street had the great outpouring of the Holy Ghost. It really fell in Wichita Kansas, right at the beginning of 1900; but in the next three years, it traversed through the west, and from t903 until 1906 the great Azusa Street outpouring of the Holy Ghost was in motion. This is when I believe the Laodiccan age began. It is the age in which God had determined that light was to be exposed. This would be the age that would culminate; bringing to a close the overall dispensation of what is called the kingdom of heaven. When this age closes, God will have His Church. Let me say also, He will not only separate His Church from its mess, He will also judge the mess by what we read in the scripture, and the true Church will be in glory with Him, as this age comes to its final hour. Pay attention to what this 14th verse says, “And unto the angel of the Church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot.” Let us just take a look at the literal church this was directed to. This letter was not written to a committee, nor a ministerial association; it was written directly to one local church. There are men in the Branham following, that will tell you each local church is to have, like a group of men, in charge. Well, I will agree that, in many of the larger assemblies in the apostolic age, there were many ministers, that conferred together on leadership and general oversight of the body of believers. Look at the Jerusalem assembly, for instance; There was Peter, James, John, and all of those, who abode there at Jerusalem most of the time. Yet, when the last word was to be said, there was usually one man in those various areas, that God held responsible. To him, it was always asked, “What do you have to say about it?” One man in particular, was held accountable for what the Church stood for. The assembly here at Laodicea, was just one of seven that received a written letter by the hand of John in response to instructions from the Lord Jesus Christ. First, the letter was to the literal church, that projected the type for the age it would be representative of. Therefore it was said to John, Write, “To the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, (This faithful and true witness reference, is absolutely referring to Jesus the Christ) the beginning of the creation of God.” The first thing He saw in that natural church was its works. You will notice that in all seven churches, He watched their works. Well, what is the works of a church? It is what a church does in representing what she has committed to her stewardship on behalf of lost mankind that Jesus came to redeem. He looks at what she does, how she does it, and at her motive and purpose in doing what she does. When we read a little further, we are able to see why He immediately said to her, “You are lukewarm.” He just looked at their works, and knew by their works, that they were lukewarm. Let us go on, “That thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou were cold or hot.” He gives a description of their overall spiritual condition, based upon their works that He has observed. You are not hot. Do you know what really makes a church hot? Holy Ghost revelation. Holy Ghost truth, quickened (made alive), is the only thing that keeps the fires burning. They were not hot; yet they were not altogether cold, so that put them in a condition that caused the Lord to say, “So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold or hot, I will spew thee out of my mouth.” By just looking at their works, He had already reached a decision of what He was going to do with it. (In this case, that local church). We are looking at the literal, Laodicean church, that existed in Asia Minor in the first century. This was an assembly of people converted to Christianity, out of a metropolitan society of people. Laodicca lay right on the trade route. It was a city of commerce; comparable to New Orleans, New York City, Chicago, Illinois, and San Francisco, cities where the trade and commerce goes in or out of the nation. Watch the society of people that live in those areas Inland you can have, many times, hardships, where things not going too well, but if there is any kind of work, any kind of lifestyle on the better side, it will be in these various hub areas, where commerce is being brought in, or exported. There is where you will always find money flowing, and anyone should know, wherever you have a lifestyle built out of an economy of easy work, accessibility to opportunities in the material realm, there is usually where you will see all the other worldly evils crop up. There is where you will see many Christians drift into a nonchalant, careless, indifferent way of living. Even when Abraham came into the land of Canaan, (you can read it in the 13th chapter of Genesis) they came journeying down through what is now called, the Dead Sea area. There was no Dead Sea there; then; the Jordan River flowed right straight on through. There was some low swampy areas, and as they viewed the countryside, and as Lot’s herdsmen and Abraham’s herdsmen got into a squabble, Abraham began to realize, they were too large a group to stay huddled together like that; without sooner or later, getting on each other’s nerves. That is when he decided that they should split up; so he said to Lot, “Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdsmen and thy herdsmen; for we be brethren.” He gave his nephew Lot choice Of the land he wanted to dwell in; and he took the other. Lot looked at the plain of Jordan, and saw that it was well watered and fertile; and at the lifestyle of the people, no doubt, for Sodom and Gomorrah, were becoming cities for the rich to retire in, where they could take life easy. The Bible describes that area as being like unto the garden of the Lord, (Eden) before God destroyed those two cities; so he chose that area; and Abraham remained in the land of Canaan. Well, it is an established fact, that where you have large numbers of people living a life of ease, Satan always seems to get in the picture. Therefore, the Bible says, “The men of Sodom were wicked, and sinners before the Lord exceedingly.” The social environment was that of perversion, just all sons of immorality. That is one thing Abraham saw. He not only saw their splendid climate. He saw what all that leisure turns into. Just look at America today, how people are flocking together in California, and in Miami, Florida, as well as some other places; and then think about what we are always reading, and hearing about the lifestyles in those places. Hell is being hatched out by the truck loads in those cities. It is ironic, that the very same cities that are the inroads to our nation, in other words, the hubs of international commerce, have to be overrun with the dope traffic; and immorality of every sort; but that just lets us know that the end is very near. It is a fact, as we read about Laodicea, that the literal city where the local church existed, that John wrote to, is in ruins today. History closed on it a long time ago. However, at the time John wrote that letter, the city did exist, the church was there, and lifestyles were motivated in general by the devil. It is a known fact; that when there are a lot of job opportunities, and easy access to money, people are prone to get very careless with their lives. They live high on the hog, as the old saying goes. They live for the finer things of life. The refinement they become accustomed to, usually causes them to drift slowly, but surely, into a decaying state; as was the case there in Laodicea. It just goes to show how quick things can turn around. Just a few years prior to John’s writing, when Paul was preaching at Ephesus; Those people there at Laodicea were hungry enough for the things of God, that they went to Ephesus to hear what he had to say, but in 30 some years, they had drifted into the condition they were being rebuked for. Paul did not preach in Laodicea. He preached in Ephesus; but because they were hungry for God, those Laodiceans travelled to Ephesus to hear him proclaim this good news concerning the saving grace of God; and then the assembly was formed at Laodicea as a result of that. Some of the churches you read about here, (Like the one in Smyrna, for instance) were in cities that were not as exposed to economic benefits as Laodicea. Those people in Smyrna were poor. They lived under conditions of poverty. Naturally, they thought it was terrible to have to live like that; but this was the only Church the Lord commended for the faith they had. I know you have heard a lot of people say, “Oh! if I had money, I would go to church, I would do this, and that, and something else”; but the truth is, when they get the money, they also get a bucket full of excuses to go along with it and they never get around to doing what they said they would do. It is not money that makes you go to church. It is what you have in your heart. In other words, it all hinges on your desire to live for God.
A LOOK AT THE LAODICEAN AGE
To the Laodicean Church, the Lord said, “I know thy works;” but I want to leave that local Church, and have you take a look at The Laodicean Church Age. In the Assemblies of God, and in the UPC, people are supposed to have more light than their predecessors; because they have the light on what the baptism of the Holy Ghost is; but I want you to know, God did not give the outpouring of the Holy Ghost at Azusa Street, just so the people who received it, could speak in tongues. That was the beginning of a walk (Or a fellowship) with God; down through the corridors of His word, and it will never stop until He gets His quota of true believers, that are to make up the bride Church. The Holy Ghost they received back then, was the same Holy Ghost, that a few years later, dropped the revelation that baptism in the name of Jesus Christ is the only scriptural formula. The trinity side of the evidence people turned the other way, and said, “That is of the devil.” Those who accepted the proper formula of water baptism, took it and went to unrevelated extremes with their newly restored truth. They had their ONE GOD doctrine; and their BAPTISM IN THE NAME OF JESUS doctrine; but that is as far as they were willing to go. They had the doctrine, but they did not have the proper revelation to go along with it; so God had to go outside of their ranks, to get a man that would allow Him to use him for His purpose, instead of just playing with the gifts of the Spirit like they were toys. They did not like to hear Bro. Branham say, Speaking in tongues is not the initial evidence of receiving the Holy Ghost. They do not like to hear me say it either; but I would be a foolish man to say otherwise; for the world is full of people who speak in tongues and profess to be BORN AGAIN BELIEVERS, but refuse to accept ask you one question, What did Jesus say the Holy Ghost (or Comforter) would do, when He came? In John 14:17, He referred to the Holy Ghost as the Spirit of truth. Then, in John 14:26, He said He (The Com-forter) would teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I (Jesus) have said unto you. In John 16:13, we find the real clincher though, the verse that says it all. Jesus said, “Howbeit (or however) when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into ALL truth.” If these evidence people really do have the Holy Ghost, why is He not doing what Jesus said He would do? How can anyone who has the Spirit of God dwelling in him, or her, reject truth that is presented to them, and say, It is of the devil? That would make it appear that God (The very Spirit that is the Holy Ghost) does not recognize His own word. How ridiculous can anyone be? Just do not try to tell me that speaking in tongues is the initial evidence of the Holy Ghost. I know better. Well, Bro. Jackson, they did speak in tongues, in the beginning. I will explain that. In the beginning, the message they heard was the original truth. Therefore, God gave them the complete fullness of the Holy Ghost, (or the full measure that true believers in this grace age may have) and all of its benefits. When those first believers received the Holy Ghost, did it make Catholics, Baptists, Methodists, Lutherans, or any other such members out of them? You know it did not. They were not even called Christians in the very beginning, only believers. When new generations came on, and the antichrist spirit injected false doctrine in place of the original truth, the Holy Ghost slowly went out. History proves, that during that period of darkness, Holy Ghost manifestations were not to be found, in what was looked upon as the Church. Read the history of the Dark Ages, and you are bound to say, Where is the supernatural? Where is the truth? The people walked under traditional custom. As we have said, The truth was stripped from the Church very slowly; therefore, when the Reformation came, and God began to restore the truth, it was a little bit here, and a little bit there, and little somewhere else, until we actually come to the Laodicean Age, when God sent one man, to put It all together. God Himself, being the Holy Ghost, that Spirit of truth Jesus spoke of, can take of Himself, and display anything He chooses to; any way He chooses to. The way He has chosen to finish His product, is His own business. There is not a living soul that can change His predetermined plan. They lost it by measure. He gave it back by measure. I will say to you though, The bride of Jesus Christ, when she goes out of this earth, will not only be a Holy Ghost filled people that believe and walk under the supernatural manifestation of the Spirit, they will also be walking in the light of the whole truth of God’s word; because that is the only way she (the bride) can put on the garment of white linen she is seen wearing, as she comes back to earth with Jesus. Let us read some more of this. Verse 16, “So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.” This was written to a local Church in Asia Minor, but its greatest application is for this 7th Church Age, the Laodicean Age, which has spiritual and moral conditions exactly like they had in that assembly back then. While we are gathered in here today, for the purpose of worshipping God, across this nation, and around the world, preachers, (some highly educated) are standing in pulpits preaching what they call, The gospel of Jesus Christ. Some of them have very beautiful buildings, TV cameras, large choirs, and all the other trimmings people put so much importance upon today. They are trying to reach the world, for Jesus, they say. They are truly rich with monetary capabilities. They can make movies of their programs, send them to their missionaries and say, “We are sending the gospel around the world”; but what they are sending, will never get anyone ready to meet Jesus in the air, in what is commonly referred to as, The rapture. I am criticized for saying that; but why cuddle up to them in a hypocritical way, when you know their doctrine is antichrist, if they have any doctrine at all? There is nothing wrong with sending the gospel; but tell me, How many of these preachers that are so greatly admired by the world, actually preach enough truth to even be called a minister of the gospel? When you cut off the truth that is the only thing a child of God can grow on, you are fulfilling this scripture exactly; in every detail. We have seen what the Jim Bakker type of ministry leads to. It generates a lot of interest; but most of it is a stench in the nostrils of God. We have reached a place in time, (in Laodicea) and we are no longer in 1963. We are over here in 1989, 25 years since then. This 20th century is real close to being shut off; but the things we see in these verses, let us know that the Laodicean spirit dominates Christendom; so everything is just according to the way God’s word said it would be. Just look at that Heritage Village. What does that have to do with the gospel of Jesus Christ? It looks good to people who like to swim. It looks good to people who want to get on water slides; but how is all of that ever going to help anyone grow spiritually? Saints, you are looking at a Laodicean spirit. There they sit, with all their paraphernalia. They look like the Laodicean people John wrote to. They act like the Laodicean people John wrote to. The big difference is, it Is instead a world wide picture instead of just one local Church. They measure God by dollars and cents, and numbers and titles to keep their program going, they have their pleas for money to support what they are doing; and poor souls respond by the thousands; not even knowing that God is nowhere near that mess. No wonder the Lord said, “You are lukewarm.” They are not doing what they are doing because they have a revelation. Neither do they have that much love for lost souls; It is just a program they are going through. It is a ritual, a ceremony, a substitute for what Peter, Paul James, John, and other God called men have done. Even though it is a world wide spirit. I suppose these things are more prevalent here in America; because of the availability of material things. We have cars and vans of every size and shape, so that we can ride to church in comfort and ease. While across the ocean, in the native islands, in the distant lands of the various continents, if they get them, they have to walk. This causes some of them to write, asking, “Can you send me a bicycle, a motorized scooter, a P.A. system, and all such like?” Naturally we are not able to respond to such pleas; but we are making an effort to get the truth of God’s word to them. On the other hand, some of these organized systems go to great lengths to send all sorts of Laodicean paraphernalia, including movies and literature; all of which give the receivers a great feeling of joy and blessing; but none of what they receive from these worldly organizations is ever going to add anything to their spiritual stature, for their doctrine is antichrist. I do not mean to be hard hearted; I only desire to be truthful. When the apostle Thomas saw those scars in the hands of Jesus, he did not send out a plea for an ox cart, nor an Arabian horse; he started walking, and got all the way into the land of India, before he was finally martyred. I am not against anyone having these things, if they are able; but you will not find in the Bible where any apostle ever made a plea for this sort of help in order to fulfill his calling of God. All they needed was the Holy Ghost, and to be called of God. I am thankful this morning that we have a P.A. system, but I know this, whether we have a P.A. system or not, that does not make truth have to hide in the closet,while the devil spreads error. When we think of what Paul used for travel, you wonder how he ever got anything done; but the Bible itself lets us know he did. I am not saying those men did not ride whatever convenient means there were in their hour. It said, that by the third century, the gospel had penetrated to the borders of Russia, and had been spread throughout the British Isles. I know, the means of travel from the first century of Christendom, and for hundreds and hundreds of years, remained to be the same. There were no railroads. There were no steam powered ships, like we have today; probably just an old ox cart, or a camel. Just think of having to ride an old ox carts. Sure, they had commercial chariots, just like we had the old stage coach system; and I believe there were times, that those apostles, if they had the means, rode them. If not, there were probably times when they would meet some Christian friend that had a horse, or a camel, or something to help them on their way. The important thing is, they got there; and they got the job done. They had no Gospel Quartets, following along, playing half rock music, to get them all enthused, they just simply went with the word of God. As for the rest, when we begin to look at works, we see our age, It is full of works; but truth is not in the picture. In fact, when you see all these movies that are being shown, supposedly to portray Christianity, they are so flowered up by these Hollywood-type actors, that when they have been shown, those native people who get all this kind of evangelism dumped on them, still know very little of what Christianity is all about. Sure, they enjoy it, and I am not telling you it is all in vain. No. God will not let anything that is truly done in His name, be completely without any benefit at all. He will get what He wants out of it, and the rest, He will reject. “So then because thou art lukewarm and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee out of my mouth.” God has already rejected it, before He even describes what made it lukewarm. We get that, in the 17th verse. “Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.” Saints, that is quite a description of a group of people that are supposed to be portraying and exemplifying the very attributes of Christ, who suffered and died for all of us, at Calvary. How does that apply to this age, rich and increased with goods? Churches of the world today, especially here in the U.S.A., have property, and other investments, and televised ministries, along with recreation buildings, where they supposedly present a Christian atmosphere for young and old. Bro. Jackson, Don’t we need these things? No. Not if you are going to live for God. No one has ever been converted to follow Christ, by throwing a basketball or a baseball. I know some will say, But at least we can keep them out of the world, with programs like this. Remember my words; When you have to keep them out of the world by such means, it is because they have not been converted. Their old nature is still in control, and the old desires are still present. I will tell you one thing, If the Spirit of God ever picks them up, and wraps them around a tree, or slams them against a wall somewhere, they may not need all of this entertainment, to keep them coming to church. If they are truly born again of the Spirit of God they will want to follow Him; and they will not have to have someone running ahead of them, making it easy for them. Some of you may not like my crude illustrations; but when people get to the place where they do not have an ear to hear, and you are constantly having to poke hot dogs down their throat, and entertain them, to get them to come and hear you, they do not want the gospel; they are like those who followed Jesus; for the loaves and fishes. On the other hand, if the Holy Ghost has ever tugged at them, and they have resisted Him, just let them get out and have a catastrophe of some sort, and they will not have to have anyone tell them, that God is trying to get their attention, On the other hand, you have those who never give God a thought until something bad happens; then they will say, Oh pray for me! Oh God have mercy on me! That is Laodicea. We love the luxury, the elegance of having it all, and yet we have so little. I am talking about the overall spirit of the age, that this church at Laodicea types; not true Christians that are doing their best to please God with their lives.
BEING PUT TO THE TEST
If a situation was to strike America today, like what happened in Armenia a while back, with church buildings torn down, and casualties everywhere, hospitals full, power lines down, and no refrigerators, no pop, no drive in restaurants, I wonder what our youth would do? If they had to pick up a shovel, and start digging their loved ones out of the rubbish, instead of watching their video tapes, they would know what life is all about; and just maybe they might find out what the gospel of Jesus Christ really is for. We ought to thank God every day; that He allowed us to be born in a nation where the lifestyle is not as primitive and crude as it is in other places; instead of allowing our blessings to become a curse to us; We have become a people so educated, that revelation does not mean a thing. There is no longer any stimulation, that could cause anyone to say, They have been drinking new wine. You can call me a fanatic, if you want to, but when God saved my soul, turned me around, and let me see that this book (The Bible) is the most Important thing a person could ever have, it just makes me act like this. Hallelujah! It is far more important than your bank book. It is far more important than a pocket full of travelers checks. It is far more important than a savings account, or a CD account. It has everything in there, pertaining to the need of your soul. It is not just a little bit of John 3:16, or 5:24, it is the whole thing, or else. When your soul is in tune with God, everything else just seems to fall into proper perspective. Looking on here at this Laodicean age, everywhere you go, the nominal church world is in a race. The monetary picture we see, is an element of people, living for refinement and the luxury, and the splendor of what they can attain in life, especially in America. In the U.P.C. churches, that used to be so empowered with the revelation they had, and so enthused with the revelation they had about being baptized in the name of Jesus Christ., there is very little reality left. When they were so persecuted by their counterpart, the Trinitarian Pentecostals, they had something to preach about. They had something to shout about. They did not need flannel charts; and all the tools people use in preaching and teaching in this age. Let me say this, What we have up here, (The charts for illustration and emphasis) is not a substitute for reading the Bible; it is a mechanical illustration to try to show you, by an illustration, what took place in 1963. Laodicca says she is rich in goods; and that is the truth. You can drive through the city of Louisville, Ky., and look at the bulletin boards in the yard of every church house, and you will begin to get the picture. They will tell you what the offering was last Sunday, and how many attended, and all such like. They will even announce days ahead, the sermon topic, and maybe even what songs they will sing, on some of them. They leave no room for the Spirit of God to do anything in their services; for He failed to get on the program. That is how precise they are. When we read the book of Acts, we find that the apostle Peter sure could not do that. No. If there had been some young girl standing at the door handing out little sheets of paper saying, Come next Sunday morning; there will be someone carried out dead: I doubt if there would have been very many show up. They would have said, If they are going to start carrying out dead people around here, I am going to stay at home; I sure do not want it to be me. Brothers and sisters, I believe you understand what I mean. I just want to say something that will cause you to realize where we are spiritually; and what is ahead for the people of this age. This is not an age that is ignorant of what God has done. It is an age, that, in spite of what they know, all they can see is the material things available to them, to promote their religious program. There is no shortage of Bibles; just a shortage of dedicated, God-called people that are willing to pay the price, to live according to its principles. I could name some of these younger fellows that come along; in the deliverance move. When their names began to be recognized in the deliverance move, it was not very long until they began building Bible schools; and started bringing in native preachers from foreign lands, to take a course on how to preach, and how to get people to respond to various appeals. I know, because we had an experience with one who came through here. That is their way of spreading their good news; but it is a program that was never practiced in the days of the early church. If these individuals had a true revelation, God would make a place for them to proclaim it; and it would not be in a Bible school. Anyhow, to Laodicea He said, “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire.” What He is really looking for here is a people that are interested in a gold that cannot be bought on the world market. You cannot call Wall Street. You cannot call London. You cannot call Tokyo and say, I want to buy so many ounces of gold. This is a spiritual gold. It is faith in God by divine revelation, wrought by the Holy Ghost. Few want that kind of gold today. If you talk about this kind of gold to this religious world out here, they will consider you to be a first class nut; and say, You are crazy; we do not want your kind around here. You just simply do not fit in. Our kind has never fitted in; and never will. “I counsel thee to buy of me gold.” Where is it produced? In fire, In trials, tests, and tribulations. It makes something worthwhile out of you. It is a gold, that when it is really refined, it is an investment that God has given you, and you will not sell it. It is a product of great value. You keep it. Why? “That thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear.” This is a garment that is pure and white, and it covers your soul. He is not talking about your flesh. The Lord is describing it this way, (white raiment) that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; so let me use a natural illustration. Any person in their right mind, if for some reason or other they were suddenly exposed in a public place, and they are not aware that they are almost totally blind, and not aware that some of their nakedness is exposed, I know one thing, decent, sensible, reasonable people would not laugh. You would not mock the person either. In the first place, you would feel sorry for their predicament. Then you would feel like, I sure do not want to make the person feel bad. Just out of decent, moral, human respect, you would do anything you could to try to let the person know the predicament they were in, and yet not expose them to public ridicule. That is what a decent person would do. Nevertheless, the Lord sees this religious world today, where thousands across America have trotted up the steps, all decked out, and smelling good, with beautiful hairdos. You could never say they do not smell good. They went out yesterday and bought perfume, and cologne; just so they would smell good today. Neither can you say they do not have on some beautiful clothes. They parade right into the pews looking wonderful; but in their heart, their soul is just as naked as can be, and they are not ashamed. In the first place, they are blind. Secondly, they cannot hear. They do not have an ear to hear the voice of God; because everything to them is natural. They live by how they feel and see things in the natural realm. Yes, that is the condition existing in Laodicea; causing the Lord to say, “And that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes.” There is an ointment of the Holy Ghost; that can sure do a lot for a person’s eyes. Not their natural eyes, their spiritual eyes, that reside deep in the soul. That anointing of the Holy Ghost does something to the inner eyes of the inner man, that causes them to see things in the word of God. Things that a magnifying glass that could bring three galaxies into view, could never show, they could see, from the word of God. Do you know why some people, in the natural, get sore eyes? It is because of the environment they have to work in. Several years ago when I used to do custom combining for the neighbors, in the year 1955, it was awful hot; much like last summer. Sitting on that tractor, pulling the combine, and the dust off of the grain just going right up over my ears, where the wind was following, and sweat was running down my face day in and day out, many nights I would go to sleep,and my eyes would be burning terribly. Finally it got so, when I would wake up in the morning, my eyes would just be pasted shut. I began to realize that I looked like a sore eyed kitten. I thought to myself, I will either have to quit for a few days until my eyes clear up, or I will have to get some help with this situation. I just simply could not hold my eyes open all day. I finally said to my wife, “If you go to Corydon today, stop by the doctor’s office, and see if he can send me something for my eyes.” What he sent was just a little tube of ointment. No, it was not Holy Ghost ointment. I am only making a comparison. The doctor said, “Tell him to put that on at night, before he goes to bed, and also in the morning, when he gets up; and that should straighten his eyes out.” Well, just a few treatments of that ointment, and my eyes cleared right up. From that experience, I realized, a lot of people in the religious world have been working so hard for their church’s little religious programs, their spiritual eyes are sore; and with sore eyes they just simply cannot see the true picture God is projecting in this age. That is why this scripture says, “Anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.” God always gives us a chance; and this is the remedy for the eye trouble of this age.
A SURE PROMISE
Let us notice now, a promise God gives to us. This is a promise; and I am glad it points to me, as well as to you. God is looking at this time we are living in, 1989, to be exact. At least that is where we are now. Six of the seven seals have already been broken, and we are waiting for the seven thunders. The Branham movement (That is what we call it, for lack of a better term) is trying to tell the world that the seven thunders was the revelation of the seven seals. The seven thunder is not, and never have been the revelation of seven seals. Only six of the seals were divinely revealed through the prophet messenger to this age. All of that is a trick of the devil. If the devil can get you to stop in your tracks, and say, This is this, and that is that, and there is no more to be revealed, like some of them are doing; you will be in the same pitiful shape they are in. They say, Bro. Branham had it all, no one else has anything. Therefore they sit at home and play a tape, just waiting for the rapture. Listen to me, brothers and sisters, they will never see it. They will never see anything else; they have seen all they will ever see. The Bible does not project that type of picture to us. The man they say they are following, did not preach it that way; nor did he live like they live. Furthermore, he did not project it in any way that should have caused anyone to catch an idea like many of them have caught. All of that is a trick of the devil; to deceive those who have no real love for the truth. Here is the word of God to true believers, “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten.” No matter how much you see Laodicea going it’s way, and no matter how many of the Branham following you see going into various fanatical tendencies, and projecting so many different things, if God loves someone, He rebukes and chastens that person. That is why I have to say, you cannot have 40 voices saying 40 different things, and all of them going in the right direction. There has to be, somewhere in the midst of all of this, a few people who have spiritual eyes that can see the true picture. Surely there are still some spiritual ears around, in various places, that will hear the true word of the Lord, and then walk accordingly. To walk according to the word of God does not make you a friend to everyone. It will not make you appreciated by everyone either. There will even be times when you will wonder, Does anyone like me? Yet in your heart you know God loves you; and you know He will supply whatever you need; even a friend. “As many as I love, I rebuke.” Do you know what a rebuke is? It is something that many times is communicated by an expression of voice. Therefore, if He loves you and me, and He sees us going the wrong way, doing something we should not be doing, He is going to speak to us in some way; and say, Stop doing that! That is not the right way. When people get to the place they think, I never have to be talked to, I never have to be scolded; they are getting in bad shape; because this promise is not just for a few; it is for all of God’s children. “AS MANY AS I LOVE, I REBUKE AND CHASTEN.” To rebuke, is one thing; and to chasten, is another. The rebuke gets our attention; and then, if we need it, the chastening follows. There are some, that get so bad they have to be chastened; and God is faithful to do it. Chastening is a corrective measure He puts in force. I will never forget, My Dad was not only a fellow that could talk to me very sternly, he could also chasten me when I needed it. When he chastened me, he would twist my ear. I know how this society is today; Oh, you ought not do that; you could do permanent damage to his ear. Back then, we did not look at things like this generation does; people knew how to use a little common sense about things. They knew how far to go; without having to have the LAW interfere with chastening their children. I never did hear of a daddy stabbing a little baby with a pair of scissors, or a knife; or of any daddy beating a little baby’s head to a pulp, when I was growing up. When we finally got all of these modern ideas about how to do it right, then a large percentage started doing it wrong. A child born in this age, is born into a world of misfits, many of whom hardly know how to get up in the mornings. There are just a few that actually escape the trap of what our modern society is trying to live by. You never hear one of these characters on TELEVISION, talk about how the old timers raised their children. They do not want anything to do with anything that has not been through their school of thought. I grant you, some dads were considered by others, to be kind of rough on their children. I have heard my own mother and father say many times, Well, I think that is sort of extreme; but we never did hear of any of those children being killed, or of arms being broken, or of their hair being pulled out by the roots. Did you? I believe you understand what I mean. We are living in a generation that is all messed up with their thinking. They do not have enough laws on the books, to make them conduct themselves like human beings are supposed to conduct themselves. Let us get back to our point. The point is, we are living in an hour, when there is going to be a people, from here on until the rapture takes place, that God loves. Furthermore, those He loves, He is going to correct them. He is going to rebuke them; and He is going to chasten them; and lead them. The admonition is, “Be zealous therefore, and repent.” To be zealous, is to have an eager desire to do something. We must do it the right way though; for zeal can work either way. As long as we are zealously going about to do things our own way, the way the religious world does, He will just leave us alone. People who go about doing things their own way, make fools out of themselves. That is why Jim Bakker, and his wife Tammy, with all of her cosmetic nonsense, turned out like they did. When that gets to be more important than the gospel of Jesus Christ that can beautify your soul, there is something wrong; and the results can be very tragic. There are people sitting in church pews today, that just simply fall for Tammy Bakker and her whole sales talk. Why? Because they are wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked themselves. They are without the gold that has been tried in the fire; and the white raiment that could cover their nakedness. Heritage Village, or whatever they call that place, is a reproach to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Then there is Jimmy Swaggart, who was so hard on the Bakker’s, that did not last a year and half after that, until his own life was brought to the light. The time has come; that God is going to go right down the line, and many more evil workers are going to go down, just like dominoes. This Laodicean age has one of the most glorious promises of them all; because He closed out those letters by saying, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man (or woman) hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” That means He stands at your heart’s door. Then, “If any man hear my voice,” is the next condition. To hear His voice, is not hearing His audible voice speaking to you. No. There is a voice of the Lord, in the earth today; but you have to hear it through His ordained ministry; and I am not talking about those ordained by the Baptist church. God has a ministry in the land today; that are truly declaring His word. Not my word, HIS word. This is how people are going to hear His voice; to fulfill this scripture. If we do not have an ear to hear what truth is, we do not have an ear to hear His voice. You can hear Jimmy Swaggart; and not hear HIM at all. You have just heard Jimmy Swaggart, Jimmy Swaggart is not going to teach you anything beyond what he sees; and I guarantee you, he sees very little when it comes to the revealed truth of God’s word. “I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” Brother, if you ever open your heart’s door to Him, He is going to tell you something. Yes, He will! He will tell you something He wants you to get hold of, and believe. You will not be telling Him; He is going to be telling you. When you become an interested host, and open your heart’s door, He will be right there. When He does come in, He will tell you things that will make joy rise up in your soul. Notice verse 21; “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in His throne.” We are a people living just shortly before the Millennium; a one thousand year span of time when Jesus will sit on a literal throne in Jerusalem. You know the reason He told it like this; It lets us see, that there is only ONE sitting, They say, That doctrine is out of the pit of hell: do not believe it. They tell their people, The trinity is a great mystery; and we are not supposed to be able to explain it. Well the devil is the one that first said it is a great mystery; no true servant of God would have started a lie like that. It is a mystery the devil cannot explain; and he is not interested in explaining anything to anyone; he would rather keep them in complete darkness. Nevertheless, if you read this right, this last verse, “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne,” Jesus is not sitting on His throne right now, He is sitting on the Father’s throne. His throne is yet to be. It is the throne of David; in the city of Jerusalem. “Even as I also overcame, (that is past tense; He has already done it.) and am set down with my Father in his throne.” In 1963, there was a prophet messenger on this earth; William Marrion Branham was his name. He brought the revelation of six seals; but the seventh seal is not yet opened. It WILL be opened one of these days; and when it is opened, we can say this, It is going to bring a halt to everything; as far as the kingdom of God and the propagation of the gospel of Jesus Christ is concerned. There will be seven thunders that will follow; and we will know assuredly, that Jesus is literally off of the throne where we see Him in Revelation, chapter 4. He is going to be off of that throne; and in Spirit form, on the earth, fulfilling Revelation 10, verses 1, 2, and 3. It has not been yet; but it soon will be. Just think of all these people, that are not looking for the seven thunders; thinking they have them already. They have so many books to carry around, they could never tell you what a thunder was, if they heard one sound. That is just a remark. People like that, will never hear the seven thunders of Revelation 10:3-4. Brothers and sisters, It is later than we think. We do not have time to play around with the word of God. No, sir. There is only one seal left, that we do not know the contents of; and when that seal is broken, there is going to be some people on earth who know what it is; and what it means. Hallelujah! I just want to be found faithful. How about you?
WHY CALL THIS THE BRIDE AGE?
I want to explain a few things from the standpoint of why we have put the charts together. We are not trying to use pictures to preach the gospel; but we are dealing with prophecy, and these sketches do help to get the point across. The prophetic writings of the book of Revelation have always been a great mystery to a lot of people; so by using these little charts, we can convey to you in a small way, some things we see in this mysterious book. It is a fact, there are a few Bible theologians from the denominational realm, that in years gone by, did see a little picture when they read the first three chapters. They knew those letters to the seven churches of Asia did somehow have a message that belonged to their respective age of time. The first six Church Ages have come and gone; and we truly are living in the seventh; which is the Laodicean age; but let me say, Many people that have heard Bro. Branham’s message, also heard a statement he made along toward the end of his ministry. He said something like, We are now entering the bride age. Naturally, that caused some people to jump to a conclusion; for that was what they were sitting there for, to hear something they could run with. The first thing we knew, some were saying, The Laodicean age is over, and we are now in the bride age. That is not the way you interpret the book of Revelation. You are still here. The Laodiccan age, as far as the descriptive title that was given to the period of time, will last until the grace age closes out for Gentiles. Just because somewhere within the interval of the Laodiccan age there is to be a portion of that time in which God works exclusively to get a bride ready; He still does not change the world; nor the religious picture of Laodicea, It continues right on. You have to see it that way to make all other scriptures line up and dovetail right straight to the end. For you who will get the video tapes, and those who will see this little chart in the Contender, I want to explain this point of it; where you see the year 1963. When God, through his prophet messenger to the age brought forth the revelation of six seals, contained in the fourth, fifth, and sixth chapter of Revelation, it marked this certain point of the age. This picture you see here, is just to call your attention to some things that are yet to be; before this age closes out. As we look at this, we are dealing with time, because we are now 26 years this side of 1963. We do not know when time will run out; what year, or anything like that. Too many people have been foolishly projecting those dates already; and time has passed right on by every one of them, and we are still here, just waiting upon the Lord to reveal what we need to know next. We are very foolish to set dates and expect God to honor such a thing; when He has already told us in His written word not to do that. We do know, by many other scriptures and signs, that we are getting close to the end. However, because of Matthew 24, we know we are somehow or other, a generation that has seen the development and fulfillment of many prophetic events in the earth about us; and because we are witnesses of them, we still have some other things to bear witness of; when God’s time is right. Those things did not happen by chance or coincidence. Those things happened in order that they might be a witness to a generation; and in return, that generation must bear witness of the rest of the picture. Just like there were people who became disciples of Jesus Christ, and were witnesses of everything that took place in His first advent, so must there be some alive, to bear witness of everything that fits into the picture Jesus spoke of, when He said, “This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.” Any way you look at it, we are still in the age of Laodicea; and will be until God has completed the whole picture projected for this age. I believe we are going to have to hold the remainder of this though; for another issue. May the Lord bless you every one. Amen.