I WANT TO SPEAK ON SOMETHING IN THIS MESSAGE, THAT HAS BEEN ON MY HEART FOR A LONG TIME. I HAVE A GREAT DESIRE, THAT WITH THE HELP OF THE LORD, TO BE ABLE TO CLEAR THE MIND OF MANY WHO SEE IN THE SCRIPTURES, INSTANCES WHERE THE WRITER SPEAKS OF A MYSTERY. THIS PARTICULAR MYSTERY SPEAKS OF THE FACT THAT GENTILES ARE TO BE FELLOW HEIRS WITH THE JEWS, ALL OF THE SAME BODY, FOR WE ARE ALL ONE IN CHRIST JESUS. JEWS THROUGH THE AGES OF TIME PAST, COULD NEVER HAVE IMAGINED SUCH A THING AS GOD CARING ABOUT WHAT THEY WERE PRONE TO REFER TO AS GENTILE DOGS. WELL GOD HAD THE ENTIRE PLAN IN HIS MIND BEFORE HE EVER STARTED TO CREATE ANYTHING. FOLLOW ME, AS WE LOOK AT A NUMBER OF SCRIPTURES; AND PAY ATTENTION TO THE WORDING, BECAUSE YOU CAN JUST SKIM RIGHT OVER A LOT OF SCRIPTURES AND MISS THE CENTRAL TRUTH THEREIN.
I am just trusting the Lord, to give me words that will make the main point of this message clear to all of you. I am giving this message the title, “The Great Mystery.” I have a particular reason for using this title. It is all mentioned in the New Testament part of our Bible. I will try not read any more scripture to you, than I feel is absolutely necessary, lest by much reading I lose the interest of some. I just want to try and read to you, something that will give you a little insight and catch your interest, so you will study your Bible to get the entire picture. We are here at the ending of time, so we should all have one purpose; and that purpose is to yield to the Spirit of God in a way that will make us a part of that great mystery. When I say that, people will ask, What are you talking about? It is all in the scriptures and we will read it. Open your Bible to the epistle to the Ephesians, first. We will read from the 1st chapter, starting with the 3rd verse. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ. According as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will. To the praise of the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace; Wherein He hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence; Having made known unto us the mystery of His will, according to the good pleasure which He hath purposed in Himself.” I am now going to go back and give you a few scriptures coming along through time. This mystery was something spoken of by the prophets in the Old Testament. They were there for the Jewish people to read if they chose to do so, the people to whom the Law had been given. All these things were written in the writings of the various prophets and so forth, but the Jewish people that read them did not know what any of it was pertaining to. I will give you one instance: As God called Abraham from the land of the Chaldeans, He told him to come out and go into a land that He would show him. As he did, He showed him this great landscape and made him a promise, All of this will I give unto thee and thy seed. In another place He said, In thee and thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. Abraham did not know what that was pertaining to. Again He said, I will make you a father of many nations. Well, all along the way, prophets picked up on this, but none of them knew what it meant. In Ephesians 3, which I will not read this morning, the apostle Paul said that this great mystery which had been hidden to men in ages gone by, God had made known to him. Therefore I will say this, To wind the whole thing up in a nutshell, he was talking about that dispensation wherein God would move among the Gentiles to take out of the them a people for His name. Hosea also prophesied it in the 1st chapter and 10th verse. “Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God.”This prophet had two children born unto him: The birth of these two children would speak of how God would deal with the children of Israel, basically the tribe of Judah. Between the two, there would be a period of time when God would not deal with Judah. In that place, which meant that period of time, it was said, I will call them the sons of the living God. All these things give a little picture here, and a little picture there, coming on down through time. Still the Jewish rabbis and priests did not know what it was pointing to. When we come to the ministry of John the Baptist, he was the voice of one crying in the wilderness, but in Matthew 3:1 we hear this prophet coming on the scene and saying, Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Still those Jews of that hour did not know what he was talking about, but he was announcing a dispensation of time wherein God was going to change the order of events. He was no longer going to be dealing with Israel on the basis of what the Law says: He was going to be dealing with the Gentile people, but starting first with the Jews, and revealing a new covenant. As we come on along with these scriptures, we can see that Jesus came along later, backing up what John had said. Again He said, Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Then, way before the Holy Ghost has fell, before Jesus was crucified, we find in the 13th chapter of Matthew, (Matthew was the only one that recorded these seven parables of Jesus in the chronological order that they were spoken.) that Jesus spoke like this, Again, the kingdom of heaven is liken unto such and such. What was Jesus actually saying? He was giving you seven parables, way before the book of Revelation was ever written, showing that in this dispensation of time called the kingdom of heaven, the Church would go through seven different and distinct stages. That seven parables was the way Jesus informed the disciples of what the kingdom of heaven would become through process of time. Then we notice, when He comes to the seventh one, the seventh parable brings in the very age of time we are living in. He tells all about this seventh parable, how a net was cast into the sea and so forth. When it was brought in, men gathered of every kind and began to sift, sort, and throw back (likening it to what fishermen do). After WW2 came to a close, starting about 1948, God had a little man in this area that He had commissioned to carry a message for this age of time, a message that would go around the world to prepare the way for the coming of Christ. At that time, the denominational realm of professing Christianity was all shaken over the affects of the war. Parents out of every system had sent sons to the war, and many of them never came back. By the time we came through that early stage, it seemed as though God began to anoint preachers and evangelists of every description and there was a great outpouring of healing and so forth. However I am bringing Bro. William Branham out as the number one point, because it is of utmost importance that we understand exactly, what part this man did play in fulfilling the scriptures. I realize you cannot get the denominational world to open up and accept anything from his teaching, because they have already determined what they are willing to believe and closed the books on everything else. They will not accept any more truth, or as we could properly say, any more light. They want God to just keep on repeating what He did yesterday, going right on back to their beginning. That is why you have hundreds and thousands of people today, sitting in church house pews of denominational congregations somewhere, and their pastors are going through a rigamarole to give them a little sermon, but ninety percent of what they hear is just plain tradition, what they have been hearing for the last one hundred years. This generation among them, knows no more today than they knew twenty years ago. God is constantly revealing present truth, which is only for our day and hour, as the apostle Peter referred to in 2 Pet 1:12, when he said, “Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth.” God is revealing many things in this hour of time, that former generations had no need to know, because they would not be alive to witness and be a part of this end time fulfillment of prophecies. Therefore those who refuse to accept any more light cannot possibly be a part of the end time bride of Christ. That is why I say, There are thousands of people across America and around the world, which have religion, but do not have Holy Ghost salvation. I realize there will be people who resent me saying that, but God did not start the Church two thousand years ago, just to make it a group of people bound up in tradition like Judaism was. That is why Jesus said to His disciples, “Upon this rock, I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” He was referring to that solid rock of revelation. A revelation cannot be taken away from you, so that is why the gates of hell cannot prevail. He was certainly not talking about Peter’s name, or anyone else’s name. He was talking about a divine revelation and nothing else. It is how scripture comes off the written pages and becomes alive to us, that amounts to a revelation. When you truly see it, you rejoice, and it is no longer just something written: it becomes a reality. You testify to it, you defend it; and many have even died for it. Coming on through the 1950’s, and approaching the 1960’s, that seventh parable began to fade out. Those men who had been anointed for a certain hour of time began to take their equipment home, store it or sell it and just settle back into that same old formalistic routine of religion. That brings our thinking to the years 1960 through 1963. That is why we have it on the chart back here.
LAODICEAN PROPHET MESSENGER-REVEALED
The little man I mentioned, that God had ordained for this Laodicean Age, a man from this area, was the prophet messenger God would use to restore and reveal truth that had been lost to the Church coming through that long Dark Age period of time when Catholicism ruled in spiritual matters. He did not come through man’s school of learning: He did not have a bachelor degree of anything: All he had was a sixth grade education and a head full of common sense. He knew it took the anointing of God to accomplish anything God would accept. His lack of man’s formal education is what many times, when people try to read his unedited sermons, causes them to say, What was that man talking about? I have said many times, If you do not know how a hillbilly talks, you might never know what he was talking about. He used terminology that a lot of educated people have never come in contact with. You just have to understand the man’s makeup, and what he was looking at. That is why I thank God that I was allowed to sit and hear what he had to say. I understood his examples and uneducated terminology. Therefore as I continue with this message I will be saying a lot of things that I have carried in my heart for many years. When I am finished, you are going to know that I have said things I have never said before. In fact, I think it is about time that some things be taken off of paper and put into some human hearts. We realize this, as we go back to the hour of John the Baptist and study the scriptures, the Jews of that hour did not expect anything like they heard from him, but what he said was ordained of God. Likewise, as God’s prophet messenger to this age came upon the scene, neither did the Gentile Christian people, fifty or sixty years ago, expect God to do anything like He did through the ministry of that little man: they just thought God would move in His particular way in their denominational systems. God is not obligated to do things according to the expectation of people who are all wrapped up in man made traditions. He just tears their traditional ideas all to pieces. When John came on the scene two thousand years ago, he had a strange message. It touched the heart of a strange people, but it was rejected by those who thought they were the main spokesmen for God in that hour. Many of those people of that hour, had gotten so tired and worn out with the traditions of the priesthood, they just stopped going to the temple, to go through the same rituals over and over again. I call them social, religious drop outs. They got tired of the tradition of things. That is about what denominational religion has driven many people to today. It is just a continuation of a lot of tradition, having no inspiration or revelation to cause any expectations in those who attend. You hear the same old thing, even though it might be spoken by a different person, it was and is still the same old pattern of religious tradition. Saints: That furnishes no food for the soul. Those rituals have no nutritional value for the soul that hungers for something that will bring about spiritual growth. God is not bound by men’s traditions: He has vessels He can use, when it is time to reveal something further to the Bride Church. He had a prepared vessel ready to forerun the first coming of Jesus Christ, but only a small number of those Jews which heard him, actually received the message of John the Baptist. When John came upon the scene, it was not long until people began to say, This man has something different. That is why he did not go into Jerusalem: He never did go into the temple area: He just went out into the wilderness, to a spot where the main crossroads intersected at the Jordan River. There, he caught the people as they traveled back and forth. When they stopped to hear this man, they began to hear something that opened their spiritual ears and made their heart’s glad. Certainly not everyone, but some did receive his message. They began to get off their camels, horses, or whatever they were using for transportation, and got baptized by this strange man. No. They did not understand everything they heard, but they obeyed to the extent of their opportunity. The main thing to remember, is that John was only preparing the way for what would confront them later. He was preparing those Jews to come face to face with their Messiah. What part did he play in the line of prophetic scriptures? He was the first part of the fulfillment of Malachi 4:5-6. He foreran the great day of the Lord, by fulfilling the part where the heart of the fathers was turned to the simple faith of children, so they would believe when He (Jesus the Christ) came upon the scene to introduce an era of time, teach His followers from the written scriptures; and then willingly submit to a cruel mob that hated Him and allow them to have Him nailed to that old cross at Calvary. That is where He (Jesus) paid the total price for the redemption of all lost and sinful mankind. Well what about the second part of those two verses, where the heart of the children is turned to their fathers, before Jesus returns to earth to smite it with a curse? That is where the prophet messenger to this Laodicean Age (William Marrion Branham) came into the picture. God used him to reach out into those denominational systems of religion and draw out of them, those who would rejoice to hear the truth of God’s word. He took all of those various scriptures that denominational religion had adopted as their theme, those which they had built their particular line of belief upon, put them all together and presented them to the Bride Church, saying, (my words) All of these scriptures belong to the true Church of the living God. Predestination, eternal security, sanctification of the believer, (genuine holiness) the just shall live by faith, expectation of the return of the Lord Jesus to carry His chosen Bride to heaven for the marriage supper, all of that belongs to those who make up the bride of Christ. There is to be no separation into denominational groups: Unity is the theme that closes out this Gentile Age of time. We must all see the same thing, because the revelation of God’s word does not give believers a choice, to pick out what part they are willing to believe to dress themselves for the Bridegroom. No. White linen belongs only to those who see the same thing and obey it, and that is all Jesus is returning for, so do not allow yourselves to be deceived by anyone who would teach otherwise. Some have said, Well, I don’t believe we all have to believe exactly alike, but that is a LIE: The scriptures teach us that we do; and we have presented those scriptures to all of you many times. As you read these two verses from Malachi, just remember that it took two men, almost two thousand years apart, to fulfill both parts of those two verses. Much of what you will be faced with later on in your Christian walk with God, will be hinged upon your acceptance of the revelation of those two verses. If you reject that, you will have some rough road ahead. Let us read them now. (Mal 4:5) “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD: (Mal 4:6) And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” The denominations can look back today and say, Oh yes, that was John. Well sure it was: no one is denying that, because all the related scriptures back it up. Where they have trouble though, is when they read further, and see that this same prophecy prophesies that he (Elijah) would return again in the ending of time. Do not tell me that is referring to the Elijah in the 11th chapter of the book of Revelation either, because we know it is not. The Elijah anointing in the 11th chapter of the book of Revelation, is not for the purpose of returning the Jews back to their apostolic fathers. He is going to open them up to a revelation of something that is far beyond that: Those early disciples of Christ had no need to know all the things that God has revealed to us in this last hour of time. The majority of those Jews two thousand years ago, did not receive what John delivered to them, but that Elijah anointing that comes upon the scene in Revelation 11, will open up something for those who will receive it, that will be strictly for that hour of time. For right now though, let us look again at what God is doing for Gentile believers here at the end time. When it says that he (the he that has the Elijah anointing) will turn the heart of the children back to something, who are the children? Well I am glad I can say, I am one of them. I do not care how old you are or how young you are, you are one of them. You may have gotten hold of it later, but you are still one of those children among those that have been turned back to the original apostolic teachings. That is why, when God began to send forth men in the Reformation, He knew there had been about five hundred years of losing the apostolic teachings, because the system of Catholicism had perverted and traditionalized everything those original apostles taught, until people had lost all contact with what the scriptures say and mean. This is exactly why there was nobody that had faith in God alone: their faith was in the system that dictated to them; and it is almost like that still today. You hear, Well I am a Methodist, I am a Baptist, this and that. I don’t care if you are a Methodist: I also was a Methodist, but nothing dictates that I have to keep on being a Methodist. Actually the first time I was baptized, it was in a Church of Christ church. That is the system of religion that says, We speak where the Bible speaks and keep silent where the Bible is silent. Well they say that, but that is not so: They interpret everything to fit their own traditional, manmade ideas. They became another part of the church of the antichrist. They are full of unbelief, they argue, they debate, they deny anything of the supernatural; and just the same as deny that the power of God can do anything. I say to you, The Church that started out on the day of Pentecost in an upper room, was a Church all through that first generation of Christendom, that believed in and experienced the supernatural power of God. God manifested His power in many ways, and through many people, as He moved to establish those believers in the teaching and example ship of Jesus and His apostles. As you read the parables, what kind of Church do you find that He is coming back for? Is He coming back for a Catholic Church? No! A Baptist Church? No! Why? Because none of those denominational systems of religion are founded upon the solid rock of revelation Jesus referred to. Those that are so proud of the fact that they are separate from Catholicism, were everyone founded upon a certain truth of the word of God, but that one truth is as far as they would ever let the Spirit of God take them. They have just stood there and dried up. They each, only have part of something that they have lifted out of the original structure of Christianity; and most of them do not even have a true revelation of the lone scripture they have established their belief upon. All of God’s undefiled word belongs to the entire body of true believers. None of it is to be laid aside and counted as immaterial, not needed any more. You and I know for sure, that every little blade of anything, comes from an original seed, whether it is rice, wheat, corn, barley, or what, just as an example. When you see that little grain, you recognize what it is, and that is because God has put in it the spirit and germination of life. Nobody plants rice just to get a bunch of fodder. Nobody plants wheat to get a bunch of straw. You everyone know that. That is God’s law of reproduction. His law of reproducing the first church works the same way: The end time harvest is to be as pure as what it started out as. The devil went to work on later generations almost two thousand years ago, to take away a little here and a little somewhere else, and finally, the original apostles were all dead and the second generation of Church leaders did not hold a line on God’s word, like the first generation did, so because of that, Satan was able to send his ambassadors here, there and everywhere, perverting the original teachings, a little at a time, being so sly that the Church leaders were caught sleeping on the job. That is how he robbed the Church of the pure revelation she started out with and eventually brought on almost total spiritual darkness.
TRUE LIGHT RETURNS TO THE CHURCH
When each generation began to have less and less of the pure revelation of God’s word, they naturally fell into Satan’s trap and begin to lean on manmade tradition. Mankind is so prone to fall for tradition, if you give them enough, they will just fall asleep with it. God does not fall asleep though, so He began to stir the spirit of revelation in certain chosen men and give them a taste of truth; and pretty soon the Reformation was under way. The re-kindled truth was very scattered for a long time as the various men came upon the scene preaching what God had revealed to them, but in process of time, God sent a prophet to this generation to collect it all together and present it to the Bride Church. That is what the five fold ministry has been working forward from in these last thirty some years. Perfection is coming into view; and the bride is making herself ready, getting dressed up in a pure revelation, which will eventually produce a beautiful, white linen robed bride for Jesus. I just have to say, His Church is not something that is theologically put together with fragments of man’s traditions. When the Reformation started, God began to give back truth that the Church had been denied for centuries of time, a little here and a little there. First Lutherans, then here came the Calvinists. Out of this came the Baptists, and the different movements, hard shell, deep water and so forth, because the old timers had a lot of different names by which they identified themselves, even though they were all Baptists. Then, here came the Presbyterians with their doctrine of predestination, (what is to be will be). The Methodists and Church of God soon began to say that doctrine was out of the pit of hell. Be careful saints, the apostle Paul wrote about predestination, and I just read that this morning. Every one of us were predestinated before the foundation of the world, that in the end we might be conformed to the image of His (God’s) Son, not through the medium of a system or tradition, but by divine revelation, which allowed us to begin to see who this Son really is, what His character and spiritual image is like, and that we can be conformed to it. As we move along here, out of the Church of England came John Wesley, preaching holiness, and the apostle Paul wrote in Hebrews, (Heb 12:14) “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.” On and on this Reformation went, but it was God’s process of restoring, giving back to His Church a little truth each time some hungry soul reached a point where God could use him for that purpose, and each time there would be a deeper revelation. The sad truth of it, was that none of the systems of religion that sprang forth from these movements ever moved on very far with what they had. Finally, right at the dawn of the twentieth century, 1900, here in America, God began to move upon certain ones and fill them with the Holy Ghost. Who were those that received this experience? It was just simply some hungry people out of the various systems of religion, Methodists, Baptists and so forth. However when they received this supernatural manifestation, they soon realized God was restoring something they had read about in the Bible. Was that the end of it? No. It was just another portion of what God was going to restore to the Church. Those were very exciting times for those who were receiving or witnessing those experiences. Likewise coming on down toward the end of the 1940’s God already had a man on the scene, that He was going to use in a mighty way. He lived right here in this area; and I myself was raised up not too far from here, about nineteen miles from here, out in the hills. I did not know this man back then, nor had I heard of him. Nevertheless right in this area, down at the Ohio River, God spoke supernaturally to him, saying, As John was sent to forerun my first coming, thou wilt take a message that will go around the world, and will prepare the way for my second coming. There were old timers standing there that day, at that baptism, and many of them heard and saw this great manifestation. The reason I am saying these things this morning, is because, all along the way of time, God was beginning to prepare the stage for the next phase of something He was going to do to restore His Church to its original identity. When we leave here in the rapture, we are not going to leave here as a cult: We are not going to leave here as a bunch of divided individuals either, one saying one thing and another saying something different about the same thing. I gave my heart to God in the Methodist Church in 1950. I was content to grow up and be a Methodist because that was all I knew at that time. I knew nothing about receiving the Holy Ghost, nor about speaking in tongues nor anything else of the supernatural. If you had the Holy Ghost or a Pentecostal experience and would have walked up to me and said, Well you don’t have anything, I would have said, What makes you so smart? I do not say that to brag, but there comes a time when you cannot allow yourself to be wishy washy about the things of God. I knew what God had done for me. In my heart, I was hungry. On a February morning in 1952, I was getting ready to get on my tractor and go to work, but I first sat down on the couch and picked up my Bible. I am not one of these kind that will pick up my Bible and say, Now Lord, you speak to me today, and then open it up just anywhere. However when I picked it up that morning, for some reason, it just opened up to the 1st chapter of Luke. I sat there and began to read what it opened up to: you can read it later, if you wish. I read where Zacharias had gone into the temple to burn incense, which was his custom, but while in there, he saw the angel of the Lord come to him and speak to him about his wife, that she was to conceive and bring a son into the world. Just to sum it all up, the angel of the Lord told Zacharias that his son would turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. (Luke 1:17) “And he shall go before Him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, (As I was reading that, I noticed that it did not continue like that same scripture in Malachi 4:6 did, but rather finished by saying, “and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”I thought, For some reason or other, God had laid that upon my heart, that the angel did not quote all of Malachi. So I turned back to Malachi 4, and read it. He had a reason for stopping right there, because John absolutely fulfilled only the first part of that two part fulfillment stated in verse 6. That is why we can pick it up in the beginning of the New Testament. Nevertheless when I saw that, and then turned back to read the rest of that verse, which says He would send that spirit of Elijah to turn the heart of the children to their fathers, I then realized, We are living here in the last days, and at that time the thought came to me, If we really are living just before the second coming of Christ, He will send that spirit of Elijah again, to finish what the last part of verse 6, says. That was in February 1952. I read that verse again and said, Regardless of how many preachers I hear preaching the second coming of Christ can take place at any time, He will not come on the scene until He has sent that Elijah spirit again, to turn the heart of the children to their fathers. Little did I realize, that God was leading my pathway right to something I needed to hear. That same summer of 1952 in the month of August, Bro. Glenn had come down home to do some squirrel hunting: I had just eaten my dinner and was going back to work, but as I stepped out on the porch, he came walking through the yard, so we talked a while. As he started talking with me, for some reason he felt led to testify to me about Bro. William Branham. He told how he had been in South Africa, and was being brought home, and that he had a sickness from being over there, having gotten himself out of the will of God by listening to that bunch of preachers that persuaded him to go. I listened with great expectation.
HOW MY ENTIRE LIFE WAS CHANGED
As I listened to Bro. Glenn tell of Bro. William Branham, his words were registering with my understanding. Then he told the incident that took place down at the river in 1933. I knew right where that place was, because that is where the ferry boat used to dock, before the bridges were ever built. When he told me of that incident at the river, no, I did not hear an audible voice, but something inside me said, If those words be true, then this is that Elijah that was to come. That same week he told me Bro. William Branham was to have a meeting in Jeffersonville. I was privileged to go. I had never seen the man before, but when that little man came out on the platform and chose his text, “The Call of Abraham,” and brought that straight on down through the New Testament, covering justification, sanctification, and the receiving of the Holy Ghost, I knew I had heard something different. When he stopped preaching that night, and they dismissed the crowd, (I know you have heard this before. but I have a reason to bring it out in this manner.) I walked out to my car, and deep inside something said, That is that Elijah. He never prayed for the sick or anything, he just preached. It was what he preached, and the way he preached it, drawing out such a beautiful picture, that convinced me, There is that Elijah spirit. Little did I know, from that moment on, that I would be privileged to meet this man and have fellowship with him. Bro. Glenn came out and took me back into the church house to introduce me to him. Yes, you could talk inside the building back then. I am saying these things to say this also, When he made church order, he never made it to fit the scriptures, he made church order to correct an error of misconduct and misuse of things of the Spirit of God. When Bro. Glenn brought me back into the tabernacle, there were still people standing in the aisle, talking and having fellowship. He took me up on the platform, where Bro. William Branham was standing, talking to about six or seven others there on the platform, in the building you are not allowed to talk in now. We stepped up behind him and Bro. Glenn introduced me to Bro. William Branham. He said to me, I hear you live on a farm in Harrison county. I said, Yes sir, I do. He then asked, Would you care if I came down to hunt on your place? I replied, Come anytime and help yourself. I was given his life story book at that time. I had him autograph it for me. Then I went home, feeling like I was floating on a cloud. Here, I had met a great man of God, but I only heard him preach one message. Nevertheless the way he brought it out, he made Jesus of the Bible stand head and shoulders taller than any doctor of divinity I have ever heard; and I have heard my share of them, from Wilmore, Asbury, and many different ones that were in Louisville back in the early 1950’s. Well the next morning, when I opened my eyes and looked out the bedroom window, there sitting in the barn lot was his car. That was the beginning of my personal relationship with this man; and I wanted to tell of it in this message, for the benefit of those who had never heard me tell it. (I will cut this part short.) Through those years following, I was privileged to hear him, talk with him, hunt with him; and we were privileged to be invited into his home and have meals at his house. He and his family ate at our home also, during those years. I thank God I was privileged to sit in his presence when he preached the Church Ages. Practically every major message that he preached in the latter 1950’s, at the Tabernacle, I was there, because I wanted to hear what this man had to say. Then I began to have various dreams about him and tell them to him. When I would tell him the dreams, he would later refer to them in certain messages. When I told him the one about the rock, that is the one he referred to when he preached the seals. It happened on an October night in 1962, when we were still at the church in Clarksville. I had asked him to come and preach at Faith Assembly. He came on Thursday night and preached. I had already had the dream about walking in the countryside and seeing the rock. As the service was over and we were dismissed, a car had pulled up out front, with a sick person to be prayed for. They had found out that Bro. William Branham was there, so they came and asked if he would come and pray for the sick person. He went to the car and prayed for the person right there in the car. At that point, I felt this was the opportunity for me to tell him the dream I had. I said, Bro. William Branham, I have had a dream about you. We went to his station wagon and got in. I told him the dream. (It is all in print already, so there is no need for me to tell it again at this time.) I will just tell what I told him.
TELLING BRO. BRANHAM MY DREAM
I said, Bro. William Branham: you had a bar like they use in rock quarries, and you saw the first layer of this stone, like there was a crevice in it, so you picked up the bar and jammed it into the crevice, which raised that whole lid of rock, so you slid that layer of rock off of the base. As you did, there in the top part was the words engraved, (like you would see on a tombstone) The Rock of Revealed Truth. I said, Bro. William Branham: When you laid that bar upon that rock, you said, Stand by this; and then you turned and started making your way through the crowd and started walking westward. I was looking at the rock, but every once in awhile, with my side vision, I saw you going over the hills and through the valleys, continuing on in a westward direction. As you kept walking west, I watched you. After awhile you went completely out of sight. (The reason I am telling this now, is because of what else I will say later today.) I say to the entire world, As I talk this way today, I am preaching not only to Australia, the Philippines, India, as well as many others, so I am preaching to you as my brothers and sisters in the Lord. I stand today, not ashamed of what God has allowed me to do in these thirty eight years, going on thirty nine, since Bro. William Branham left the scene. I turned and watched him until he disappeared over the last summit; and when I looked back at the crowd gathered there, all of a sudden everybody began to raise their heads and say, Where did Bro. William Branham go? Where did Bro. William Branham go? It seemed like there were thousands gathered around this rock; and all of a sudden there were screaming voices all around, screaming, Oh, Bro. William Branham! Where did Bro. William Branham go? They began to break up and go back in the same directions they came from, still screaming, Oh Bro. William Branham! Where did he go? Sitting there in the car in October 1962, which was when he was preparing to leave this area and move to Arizona, somewhere around the first of the year, which would be 1963. Here is what he said, Bro. Junie, when this all takes place, (He picked up his Bible and said), Stick with this word, because they will go after everything, preaching everything. Then in the seals messages, when he referred to my dream, I think about three times, he never put that last part in there. That was left out of the picture. Nevertheless I can honestly say this, Since 1965, when he was killed in that automobile crash, that is exactly what those who followed him everywhere he went, have all done, just gone after every carnal thought. They used to have a deacon by the name of Banks Wood. After some of the carnal things began to develop, he got sick of the entire mess and decided to get out: He could have come here, and he did come a time or two, but then went back to a denominational, trinity assembly. He was a building contractor, financially capable of going to all of Bro. William Branham’s meetings at his will. He bought a house next door to Bro. William Branham over on Ewing Lane. He lived next door, and had close contact with the family, but when he left the Tabernacle, where did he go? He went right back to where Bro. William Branham’s message called people out of, feeling that he had to go to a big church. He went to the Assembles of God in Louisville, Kentucky, pastored by Bro. Waymond Rogers. Then when Bro. Rogers died, the last I heard, he had gone back to a church his wife had come out of, the Church of God. On and on, this kind of picture developed, simply because they had no revelation: They just followed flesh, having a head knowledge of what Bro. William Branham had preached, but unable to apply it to their life and walk in it, because of being void of revelation. I could tell you of many things that fit this pictures, things that some of those celebrities did after Bro. William Branham’s death, what they taught, and where they are at today. I do not do this to belittle people, but to help those who will hear me and take heed to the error of their ways. Do you not find it very strange, that they had a revelation when he was alive, but when God took the fleshly attraction away from them, and they had no flesh to hold on to, they went every which way, teaching whatever comes into their mind? I can thankfully say this, My revelation did not die when God took away the man He used to open my understanding, and I am very thankful for that. I remember how a lot of that bunch, (some of them from Canada) moved here, just to be near him, to be able to travel with him. Every time you went to one of his meetings, they were there. They had the financial means to do whatever they chose to do, so they chose to hang onto his coat tail, believing they could gain some favor with God that way. It was out of that category of characters, that some began to make their medallions, (William Branham is our Messiah). Then they began to baptize in his name. On and on went that perverted picture, as Satan captured their mind. When I look back, I have to say, Thank you Lord, that you kept my eyes open and did not let me fall into that Satanic trap. It was not because I am a good person: It was the grace of God, watching over a vessel He could use at a later time.
CARNAL MINDED MEN DO CARNAL DEEDS
When Bro. William Branham preached the Church Age messages in December 1960, I sat there in every one of them and heard exactly what he said. That is why I can hold this book up and say, This edited edition of the Church Ages, which was edited by Dr. Lee Vale, has things in it that Bro. William Branham had not even taught at that time. He took so long editing it, that he was able to inject things Bro. William Branham taught later on, and make it as though they were in those Church Age Messages. I have read it several times; and having sat there and heard what he said in those messages, I know Lee Vale inserted a lot of what was taught later. In the original Seven Church Ages booklets, some things in here that Lee Vale has inserted, definitely were not even in the original sermons. That is why I will say to any preacher, I am glad that the men that wrote the New Testament did not have that kind of attitude. They endeavored to keep what they recorded in continuity, so readers later on could follow the true progression of the events of His ministry. In the spring of 1963, Bro. William Branham told the experience he had, the vision, everything, and it is all in this book. It shows and portrays the spiritual impact of God’s Spirit in dealing with him to go west, when he moved there, and that from the west, he would come back here to preach the seals and give all the testimonies about the Lord telling him, This is the third pull. For thirty eight years, going on thirty nine years, all I hear from the echoes around the world is these characters saying Bro. William Branham is going to come back from the dead. Bro. William Branham is going to do this, Bro. William Branham is going to do that. I have kept my mouth shut, because they were the ones that said, Raymond Jackson don’t believe the message. I believed the message that God anointed him to deliver to this generation: I just did not believe all the things they thought they got from his messages. That is why I can say to Billy Paul, Joseph, and all the Spoken Word people, I believe the message he brought; and I have allowed the Spirit of God to give me a revelation of that message, but it is very obvious you never did. I admit, you fell heir to the material things of his ministry, but you sure did not fall heir to the anointing that was upon him, and that is very sad. You might think, Bro. Jackson, be careful what you say! Well I say to you, The time has come for me to say, Let’s stop this thing of putting it off, and putting it off, waiting for Bro. William Branham to return to finish something! He is not going to return to finish anything you are expecting! Do you not know, that when the children of Israel began to complain as they journeyed in the wilderness, that God let them wander around out there for forty years, until the complaining generation died off? Is that not right? Well we are in the thirty ninth year, since Bro. William Branham’s death. Next year will be the fortieth year. It is not going to be ten more years, nor five, until Jesus comes for those who are ready to go with Him. If God has sent that man for a purpose, that purpose is already in application. I will say this to anybody that wants to criticize, God has used Bro. William Branham’s image to come to me in dreams all along my pathway since his death. Never did I make him my God or Savior, never have I baptized in his name, but from the scriptures, I can see the part he fulfilled in the plan of God, because it opened my eyes and caused me to study what he said, from the standpoint of what is written in the Bible. When I study his messages, it makes me get into this Bible for vindication. That is where I want to be, because what he said here and here is going to put you in the Bible, if you look at it right. You do not have to memorize all of his exact words in order to receive a revelation of what he taught. I stand in no one’s way of reading this, so do not come around and tell me you have a separate revelation of his messages, because if you do not have the Holy Ghost revealing it to you, your revelation is no more benefit to you than watching a cat chase a mouse through the woods somewhere. God has been revealing present truth, and those who love it are very thankful. They are not living in the past, hoping for something that will not happen. Now having said that, please allow me to say what has been going on through these almost forty years.
ABOUT MY HORSE DREAM
When Bro. William Branham passed off the scene, I thought, What are we going to do now? Many of us said that. However, before he passed off the scene, in the year 1964, I had the dream about the white horse. (I am not going to tell it again, as it is already in print.) I saw him coming through the sky on a white horse, and watched that horse come down to the ground right in front of where we were sitting in our car. He said, You, get ready, and then he said, Prepare yourself for the work you have been called to do. The third time he said, And if you believe these words, a powerful horse will be given to you, to carry you in the calling whereunto you are called. On August 1, 1965 I had the chance to go to the Branham Tabernacle and tell him that dream. When I told him the dream, he said, Bro. Junie, something is getting ready to happen. Think of that saints! In August, 1965. He said, Something is getting ready to happen: I don’t know what it is, but when it does, you will have a work to do. He took me over to a picture that had just been painted of Elijah in the fiery chariot, being translated to glory. Some woman had just painted it and given it to him as a gift. He said, That is a beautiful picture. I said, Yes, it sure is. Then he came back and picked up his Bible again and said, Bro. Junie, I know what the horse is, but he did not know what my calling was: The horse is the power of the word. Well the power of the word, means authority to handle it, nothing else. August 1965, I left there knowing what the horse was. I told him, the horse I saw standing after he rode away, was a little smaller. No, it was not a pony. I have raised horses for several years, so I know what the difference is between a large horse and a smaller horse. I will say this as humbly as I know how, to Billy Paul, Joseph, and all the rest of the Spoken Word people, When Bro. William Branham was alive and spoke of my dreams, yes, you printed them, but when God took him off the scene, my dreams did not amount to anything worthwhile to any of you anymore. You pay no attention to any of them, and I know why: It is because they do not glorify the prophet. God did not mean for him to be glorified, but he was supposed to be respected and honored as a servant of God. That is our feelings exactly. We take nothing whatsoever away from what God called him to be and do, but we do refuse to worship him, like many of you have been doing. I say these things because God is not going to let you stay here forty more years and wonder, and quote, and build this and that, about something you should have had mind enough to know what was being talked about, but do not. God has a time table He goes by, so we have to move with Him according to what He is doing.
GOD LEADS THROUGH DREAMS
After Bro. William Branham’s death, I began to think, What in the world will a fellow do, now that he is no longer with us? That is why I say, In March, 1966, I had made up my mind, I will stay here in Faith Assembly, stay at home, keep my mouth shut and mind my own business. I thought that was the right thing to do, but one night later on, I saw myself in another dream, out on the farm working. In the dream I was digging post holes and repairing a fence, when Bro. William Branham came walking up to me from the right side. He looked at me, pointed his finger and said, Bro. Junie, I want you to go speak for me. I looked at him and said, I won’t do it. He asked, Why? I replied, They won’t listen to me. Again he said, Bro. Junie, I want you to go speak for me. I again said, No. Why? They won’t listen to me. The third time he again said, Bro. Junie, I want you to go speak for me. I saw myself take a piece of paper out of my pocket, and write on it the title of seven sermons. Then I said, If I can preach this, then I will go. He took that and looked at it. A smile came on his face and he said, Perfect. With that, he handed it back, and walked away. When I woke up, I did not know what those seven subjects were, but I want you to know, over the coming months a thought would drop down into my mind and a picture began to form. That is why I am saying to you, When God sent Bro. William Branham, what was he to do, scripturally speaking? He was to deliver a message that would turn the heart of the children back to the fathers. Who are our fathers? Those who stood for the undefiled word of God in that first century of Christendom. The main ones were Peter, Paul, James, John, Matthew, and many more that we need not name. What those disciples of Jesus wrote, is what our faith is anchored upon. You can read it in the epistles that Paul and Peter and the others wrote. There, is where our faith is anchored, Time and circumstances through the centuries following, absolutely took that original, apostolic truth away from us. We still had little glimpses of it, but there were certain things about each one of them that allowed carnal minded people to push everything to the extreme. Eventually the true word of God became fragmented, giving those who desired to do so, the opportunity to use the word of God to further their own purpose. The truth that was restored through the Reformation period, was scattered around in all the denominational divisions that called themselves Christians, but God had a plan to restore all of it to the Called out Church. In process of time, He sent a prophet messenger to this age, to do what no other man could do prior to that time. God does everything according to His own time schedule.
GOD’S PROPHET MESSENGER TO THIS AGE
When God’s prophet messenger to the age of Laodicea came on the scene, he took the doctrines of the New Testament, and began to put them back together as they are in the Bible. All scriptural doctrines belong to the same body, without divisions. When he began to show that the Bible doctrines all belong to the true Church established by the apostles of Jesus Christ, you could not help but see where predestination had a definite place in the plan and work of God. While the denominations would say, Oh anything like that is out of the pit of hell, and Jimmy Swaggart wrote that in his magazine, those who love truth accepted predestination as something that works because of the foreknowledge of God. When Jimmy Swaggart wrote, that predestination was of the devil, I said this to a friend of mine, Watch out, something will happen to him: God will lower his platform. It was not long until it happened. Respect for him and his ministry, was diminished in very short order. I am not telling you that Bro. William Branham explained every little detail of the various doctrines he mentioned in his sermons, but I will say, He brought the framework of the major things that we were to be turned back to, and I include myself as one of those New Testament children living here, almost two thousand years after the advent of the apostles. I was certainly one that wanted to get back to what they believed and taught. I heard that little man say ever so many times, The gifts of the Spirit will be in the end time Church. Well that sounded like something I wanted to be a part of. When he preached the Church Ages Messages, and selected the men that he could look upon as the messenger to each age, it was because he had studied the history of those men and seen how the Holy Ghost supernaturally led them, and directed them to teach and deal with the things that they did, in their particular hour of time. On the basis of that, the end time Church would absolutely have the gifts of the Spirit, along with the ministry that would be needed to lead them in the ways of perfection. We find that vindicated in Ephesians, chapter 4. In the year 1963, Bro. William Branham preached the six seals messages. He never brought you the revelation of the seventh seal, even though many argue that he did. I have three different writings at home from different persons throughout the message, throughout the world. One said the seventh seal was this, another said it was that, and another said something else. I just have to say, The seventh seal has not yet been opened, not even touched. Why do I say that? Because Jesus Christ is still sitting there on the mercy seat with the seventh seal still intact on that scroll, just waiting for the right moment when that seal can be broken. The strict Branham following, those who will admit that it has not been opened, will say, Well the prophet has got to come back to do this and this and so forth. No. The prophet will not come back before the resurrection of the other bride saints; and when he does come back, the bride will already be perfected and ready to go with the Bridegroom. You would think, that after almost thirty nine years beyond his death, at least some of those people would realize God is not going to send him back just to please their perverted ideas. Well Bro. Jackson, what do you think we are going to do? God has already raised up a ministry to fulfill the rest of what he brought forth to get us on the right pathway. Well where is it? It is looking you right in the face, if you will just open your eyes and ears and recognize it. You can read in those books until you are gray headed, and all you will know when you are finished, is that the prophet said thus and so. I must ask you who are guilty of that, Where does that put you in the plan of God for the end time? I will say as kindly as I know how, William Marrion Branham came on the scene, precisely when God wanted him to, he delivered the word of God that he was ordained to deliver at that hour, and did precisely what he was supposed to do. He touched the godhead, he touched water baptism, sanctification, the oneness of God, the Millennial reign of Christ, and all the other basic teachings of the New Testament, but his calling of God, was not to teach every detail of what he restored back to the Church. His primary calling was to focus our attention back to the Bible, rather than upon man’s creeds. He reached back into Genesis and picked up what happened in our garden of Eden, and we learned that Eve did not eat an apple off of a plant life tree. That tree of knowledge did not grow out of the ground, no more than the tree of life did. We know the tree of life did not grow out of the ground because the tree of life is in paradise today. Where is paradise? It is in heaven now and has been ever since Jesus was resurrected and ascended. I want you to know saints, That the two trees in the midst of the Garden were two spiritual Laws. If Adam and Eve had obeyed the Creator and never disobeyed, they would have procreated children from the law of the tree of life, never to die and never to know the feelings of guilt and shame. Eating of, or partaking of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, was a matter of having sexual relations for pleasure instead of only for the purpose of reproducing themselves, like the rest of God’s creation does. How did Adam and Eve know there could be pleasure in the sexual relationship? Satan inspired the serpent (Adam’s Servant among the animal kingdom) to seduce Eve; and Eve having learned this, could not let Adam rest until she had persuaded him to partake likewise. Maybe you think this is plain talk, but that is what happened and we everyone need to know it. This knowledge opens up our understanding to many things in the bible, that would have remained an unsolvable mystery to us otherwise. That tree of life is only a symbol of a basic law. Nevertheless, I want to read something to you from the Seals book. I am going to read this and I say to Billy Paul, Joseph, Spoken Word, all of you, It is one thing for you to boast about how much you have printed, but you do not know a thing about the Spirit that inspired what you are printing, to be spoken in the first place. In the Seals book, you find where Bro. William Branham was asked a question; and it is on (page 494), so I will read it.
READING FROM BOOK
Listen to this,“Would the Bride of Christ have…Would the Bride of Christ have a ministry before the Rapture?” (This was his reply?) Sure. That’s what’s going on right now. The Bride of Christ, certainly! It is the Message of the hour–the Bride of Christ, Sure. She consists of (Listen to this.) apostles, prophets, teachers, evangelists and pastors. Is that right?-That’s the Bride of Christ. Sure, She’s got a ministry, a great ministry-the ministry of the hour, it’ll be so humble.”
What is humbleness? If you are not looking for the right thing, you will never see it. Do you know what I mean? If you are not looking at the right thing, and if you do not have a revelation of what to look for, you will never see it. In our natural state, we have certain ideas, Well it has got to be like this, so you put it over here, you put it over there, but it is right down here in front of you. I want to say this, After Bro. William Branham’s death, I always wondered, what that job really was, that I was to do. Oh yes, God guided me in the ministry: He has showed me by His grace, to go on, and those things that I wrote on that little piece of paper in the dream, those seven things, but that did not give me the entire answer. In time though, God gave me a divine revelation, how to place every one of them right back in the scriptures. Not in the quotes of the books, but in the Bible itself.
TRUTH ABOUT GOD’S MINISTRY
Let us now pick up this part about the ministry. I say this to the Spoken Word people, the world over, wherever you are, You have lived for thirty eight years, going on thirty nine years since Bro. William Branham’s death, still looking for him to come back to pamper your flesh. You can go on down the road of life quoting what he said, but I ask you, What are you going to do when God takes it off the pages and puts it in men’s hearts? I challenge you, Is what he delivered to us still truth? What are you still looking for him to come back from the dead for? Evidently you do not really believe what he taught: All you want is the flesh man himself. If you were interested in truth, you would respect present day truth. Regardless of your unscriptural expectations, He is not coming back to finish up anything other than to take on his immortal body and be transported to glory. I say that with sternness, because it is Thus saith the word of God! God has never raised up anybody that has been dead for nearly forty years, to finish any kind of ministry. He raised up His Son in three days and nights, and that was not a full three days and nights of seventy two hours. Jesus brought Lazarus forth from the dead. He had been dead for three days. His sister said, Behold, he stinketh. Nevertheless I want you to know, No Bible can show you where He is going to bring back a prophet after he has been dead going on thirty nine years, just to please your unreal expectations. I say to you this morning, around the world, whoever you are, You may have book cases full of quotes and things you hold dear, and you have used them like a baby would a pacifier, but a pacifier does not put protein in the blood stream, nor carbohydrates in the digestive system. You know it. I don’t say these things to offend, but it is very apparent, that as long as you can hide behind his books, you feel justified in saying, But the prophet said. Sure, he said it, but let us permit God to take it off the pages and see how God puts it in the hearts of people. What are you looking for? Professor Fosdick? Do you think that is the kind of ministry God is going to use? No sir. Bro. William Branham himself, said it would be a humble ministry. He only had a sixth grade education, and I just have an eighth grade education, and I want to say to my brothers and sisters, I have been called everything under the sun, but I do not allow that to move me. I say this to my friends in the Spoken Word, You have not hurt me, but in the eyes of God, you have hurt yourself. I am ready to stand before the God that created me, and the Lord that died for me, to save my soul, and stand in the presence of your prophet and my prophet, and let us see what he testifies and says about me. I heard and received the message that man delivered to this generation of Christendom, and it pointed me back to the word of God. Since his death, God has used Bro. William Branham’s image to come to me in dreams, to guide me in certain things. I appreciate that, even though you educated, religious big wigs say, That is spiritualism. Well to you, it might be, but I challenge you, asking you this, When Jesus took Peter, James, and John upon the mount of Transfiguration that day, what did they see? They saw a vision. God brought the images of Moses and Elijah before them: not the literal men, but the image of Moses and Elijah, and they were seen talking to Jesus. If He could, and would do that at that time, Why would any believer not allow God to do the same thing today, using His prophet to this age? I am constantly amazed at some of the shortsighted attitudes I come in contact with, but I just leave all of that in the hands of my heavenly Father: He is the ONE in charge of His plan for all of us.
GOD’S WAYS ARE ALWAYS PERFECT
When the year 1967 came, I had been to some different places, to some of the old places where I had been in some meetings before, ministering to people who used to come to the Tabernacle. I knew them, all of them. However I got to the place where I became so discouraged; and it was because, everywhere I went, all they were doing was throwing quotes at me. But Bro. Jackson, the prophet said so and so. But Bro. Jackson, the prophet said this and that. That kind of attitude caused me to walk for many days wondering, What in the world is that job I am supposed to do? Then one night I went to bed; and during my sleep I saw myself in a dream, walking out to our mailbox. I took the mail out of the mailbox, sorted through a lot of enveloped and everything like most of us get, and then I noticed one particular envelope that really caught my eye. I came into the house and cut the flap open: The envelope looked like an envelope you might get from the court house with an official document of some kind inside. When I reached in and got the folded article and opened it up, it was a beautiful, printed, minister’s license. As my eyes looked at that, I read, be it known unto you, (That was how it started out.) Raymond Jackson, being called of God according to such scriptures, and on down the line. When I looked down at the end where it was signed, William Marrion Branham, August 1, 1965. I thought, That was the day I told him about the horse dream. He never told me what the work was, or the job, he only told me what the horse was. When I looked across the top of this document I received, there was the word “Apostle.” That dream came two years after Bro. William Branham was taken in that automobile accident. I have made mention of it, but you know, through the years of printing, I have never stressed that, because I have always felt, Lord, I can accept what you have said, but time will tell the story. I will not have to go around announcing what God has called me to be. All I have ever said, wherever I have went, was, God has called me to stand for a ministry of men that will raise up out of the rubbish of all this confusion, to fulfill Ephesians 4. They will see what I am looking at, and together, one day, they will lift up their voice and begin to preach the same thing I am preaching. Not word for word, but with their own words, they will preach the same revelation. I can say this Faith Assembly, Around this world, God has raised up another generation of preachers that love this truth. Some of them are older men, but wherever I have gone, I have had more than one man say to me, Bro. Jackson, you are truly an apostle sent from God. I do not say that to brag, (I have nothing to brag about, except the grace and mercy of God.) but I will say this, The time has come, that I will not take back anything, because time and conditions, along with the things we have printed through the years, necessitates that I say something of this nature now. If I do not take this stand now, I feel like there are some innocent people who have simply been looking to and trusting a lot of flesh for their guidance; and trusting in the flesh of man will not bring any kind of perfection. Saints of God, Listen to me, Do not put your trust in human flesh: It is imperative, that you put your faith and trust in the word of God. You will receive the word of God through men He has chosen, but be absolutely sure that the man you are listening to, knows what he is talking about. That is why, when I saw that little man the first time, I said, There is a man that knows what he is talking about: I do not want daylight to be seen between us: I must hear what he has to say. I felt that way then; and I never changed my mind. I was not unaware of the fact that he made dual statements about certain things, but I began to realize, God ordained him to make these dual statements for a specific purpose. Why? Because God knew there was going to be a generation of people that would make a god out of him: At the same time, there would be those that would receive the actual revelation, and others that would take the carnal side and just follow his flesh. That is why I can truthfully say, After thirty eight years since his death, God has set the ministry in place. It is just a matter of time now, God is going to put His little Bride together in total unity. I say to the Spoken Word people and all the rest, You quote Malachi 4, that he was sent to turn the heart of the children back to the fathers, but you leave it there. I am not going to leave it there! God is going to see to it, that every word that little man preached, is going to turn everyone who heard it to something. Some will be turned back to that apostolic faith. That literally means, that the Church he was sent to, to get them out of religious systems, is going to wind up with every aspect of the faith that those apostolic Church Fathers had invested in them. They will baptize just like the early ones did. They will be a ministry just like the early ones were. They will be led by the Spirit of God. They are not going to run up and down the road quoting God’s prophet messenger. They will live and preach what God reveals to them. First was John the Baptist, then Jesus, then what was the next order? The apostles. It was not the evangelists that started it: It was the apostles that started it. You everyone know that. It was the apostles that wrote the scriptures of the New Testament. All these other ministries fell right in line behind them. I say to you, That is exactly the order of our day. If you cannot recognize an apostle, then how are you going to recognize a prophet, a New Testament one? Or a preacher? Or an evangelist? For thirty eight years, it has been every man for himself. For thirty eight years, innocent souls have suffered because of that. Ewald Frank of Germany did a wonderful work, but he left no provision for God to have anyone else: Then he got married again. On and on these images have gone throughout the ministry that was pushing Bro. William Branham. The minute you think you are the only one, God has a way of eliminating you. Well, Bro. Jackson, are you the only apostle? No sir. I say that emphatically! Well, tell me who the others are. If you are one who cannot recognize them, it is none of your business who they are. When you have to know everything before you start believing anything, the bride will be gone and you will be left here. You have got to see something by divine revelation, if you are who you think you are. For thirty eight years of time, I have stood for an end time ministry of men; and God has absolutely raised them up in different areas, one by one, until they are in place, with groups of people following them. To me, it is simply another generation of people, a generation of believers with a revelation of what the prophet messenger brought to this age, and they have it in the right way: Now we are standing at the end of this age, waiting for God to finish the whole picture. We have a profile, but the finished picture will be more glorious than what we see as mortals.
WHO ARE YOU GLORIFYING?
I have a lot more to say while I am on this message, so I ask you to pray for me, that I can say it in a right way. I respect people, but there comes a time, you have to respect God and His word first, before human friendship. What I have preached, I preached from the bottom of my heart, with honesty and sincerity. I have a lot to say during this time, while I will be preaching on this subject, and it can easily stir up a hornet’s nest. I have already received one letter, and I do not know who the man is, but evidently he heard what I had to say this morning, and disagreed. By the time I do finish the message, I do not know where I am going to keep all the critical e-mail I will get. I have thought many times, There are men sitting at home, and all they know is what Bro. William Branham said: They do not know a bit more about what the true Church is to look like, than a monkey in the jungles of Africa. They are sitting there, conceited, self-centered, having no fellowship with anybody except those who think like they do. For thirty eight years, men have propagated, published and put together a lot of unscriptural ideas that would make the end time Church look worse than it did when it was in Catholicism. That is because it is not a church that has been built upon a ministry being restored according to revelation of God’s word. All they want is one man, to be the central figure of what they stand for. The only man I will exalt as a central figure is the Lord Jesus Christ. I also sat under the ministry of the man many of them worship, but what I heard, was that man exalting Jesus Christ. I heard that loud and clear, and I will never forget it. I am telling these things, especially concerning the dreams, because through the years, as things came against me, the dreams encouraged me to press on. Little did I realize what was going on, and why God kept propelling me along in that way. Please believe me though, I am not telling any of this to glorify my flesh: I give all glory to the God of mercy and grace that saw fit to save my soul and direct my pathway. Because I do not exalt the prophet, making him the Messiah, I am accused of not believing his message. That is totally wrong. I believed the revelation he delivered to this generation; and because I did, and because I did accept him as God’s prophet messenger, I have done my very best through these thirty eight years, to defend his ministry, his character, and the things he brought out of the word of God, that no other man had. I have done my best to stand for what his ministry was supposed to do, how it was to turn us back to the same apostolic faith that we see demonstrated in the book of Acts, so that we also may have our feet planted upon that same solid foundation that theirs was established on. I am totally convinced, that this end time Church should be believing the same foundational doctrines the New Testament Church was founded upon, and that the end time Church would be a supernatural Church; and not just a bunch of carnal individuals, sitting at home playing tapes and waiting for the day when their prophet would come back from the dead to lead them. That condition has gone on for so long, it is sickening to hear some of the ideas that come from their deceived hearts. I am not standing here just to run others down, nor to lift myself up, but I am sure of this one thing, There are a lot of people hanging on to their relationship with God’s prophet messenger, that will have to give account to God one day, for what they were privileged to hear and what they did with it. I want to read some scripture to go along with this, because it is all about this great mystery. I have titled this message, “The Great Mystery,” so open your Bible to the 3rd chapter of the book of Ephesians. The apostle Paul refers to this mystery in the letter to the Romans, as well as in the letter to the Ephesians. Actually this mystery that Paul had been given the revelation to explain and expound upon, bringing it out into the open, is the true Church, which is referred to as the body of Christ, and also referred to as the family of God, and different other ways. It is all within this time referred to as the kingdom of heaven, that God cut the Jews off because of their unbelief, and turned to the Gentiles with this beautiful message of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Within that kingdom of heaven period, the Church goes through seven distinct stages, which we refer to as the seven church ages. There is also what is referred to as the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God is not in reference to time, but rather to what He puts inside of believers. That is because the kingdom of God is inside of you, if you are a true believer. By His sovereign grace, He put His very Spirit inside of you, making you and me, and all who accept His word of life, temples of the living God. He (God) is the ONE that dwells in mansions, and His truly redeemed children are those mansions of John, Chapter 14. We are not to look for a mansion ourselves, but we do become a mansion, or temple of God each time He fills one of us with His Spirit, or literally fills us with Himself. John 14:2 “In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” The house of God is His redeemed children. That is where He dwells. Where did Jesus go, to prepare a place for us? He did not go into heaven with a hammer and nails to build mansions: He went to Calvary with a blood offering, which He offered to the Father for all who believe His gospel unto eternal life. With His own blood, He redeemed us; and each time someone accepts that redemption, God moves into another mansion. It is as simple as that to us now, but to everyone before it was explained by the apostle Paul, it was a great mystery. Now we can see that this Spirit in the body of Christ, actually quickens truth to your heart and through these vessels of clay, another likeness of Jesus Christ can be reproduced; not in the same image of His physical statue, but in the character and spiritual attributes that Christ portrayed when He was here on earth.
HOW WE REPRODUCE
We are going to start reading here in Ephesians, beginning with the 1st verse of the 3rd chapter, to see what the apostle Paul wrote concerning this mystery. “For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation (not by theology, but by revelation) He made known unto me the mystery; as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ, Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto His holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit.” Now notice right there, how the apostle Paul, (who was writing this) is telling you and me that God had made known to him the mystery, how to understand it, what it involves, what it consists of, and that this mystery is fulfilled by God sending apostles, based upon the things that the Old Testament prophets had written. As for as these critics that rebel against truth, no doubt I will set their nests on fire, because they have no knowledge whatsoever of what Bro. William Branham was actually fulfilling in much of his ministry. They see the man, but not much of anything beyond that: I saw something that the man was talking about; and that is the part that I want to be a part of. “That the Gentiles should be fellow-heirs, and of the same body and partakers of His promise in Christ by the gospel: Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of His power. Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things. (Now notice, that in the King James Bible, it says, who created all things by Jesus Christ.) The words, by Jesus Christ,” were added by Trinitarian translators that believed Jesus was with the Father helping Him create all things. Those three words are not in the original manuscripts, so do not think I am blaspheming, when I say they were added by the Trinitarians. In the Hebrew and Aramaic versions, who created all things, ends that verse. God did it all, without the help of Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son, that was only born into this world two thousand years ago. He was in the mind of the Creator from before the foundation of the world, and many things were to be wrought through Him, but He had no part in creation. I pray that you everyone understand and accept that explanation. Anyone who does not accept this explanation, can easily verify it by getting hold of the original texts and reading it themselves. When you get to talking about these things, many times this is what causes the godhead message to be misunderstood by some. God is reconciling the world to Himself by Jesus Christ, He is saving lost souls of the world by Jesus Christ, but Jesus had no literal part in creation itself. In reality, it is God’s grace that has been imputed through Christ Jesus, that we have access to. God the Father, (which is a sovereign Spirit without bodily form) did not give His life in payment for our sins. Jesus, the Son of God, gave His life. He became the means for you and me to be reconciled back to God, the One that took your and my place at Calvary. That is why we are talking about the great mystery. That mystery is built on a revelation and understanding of all the Old Testament prophets. When Paul brings it out of the Old Testament and puts it over here in a revelatory structure, it begins to become a picture in the heart and mind of the redeemed, how that the Gentiles which had always been looked upon as heathen in days gone by, are now part of the family of God, because of God’s extended hand of mercy. The Jews could not understand it, even though God said to Abraham one day, I will make you a father of many nations. You can read that in the 9th chapter of Romans, where Paul is writing to the Romans, explaining to them, that in that space of time where God would no longer call the Jews His, there, they would be called the children of the living God, meaning the Gentiles. Afterward then, He would return to the Jews and reconcile both the ten northern and two southern tribes, and again place them in the promised land, after He has come to us through a dispensation of time to save out of the Gentiles a people that would bear His name. With this thought in mind, I want to say, God sent a humble man to this generation, a man that was not a doctor of divinity, but spoke many things in such a country fashion that the educated people who heard him did not understand what he was saying. His message was, Get back to the word of God, but many of that kind just became so disgusted because of his terminology, that they totally rejected him as a man of God. They would say, What is that man talking about? Many times, as you read his sermons, you see uh, well, and he would start saying something and jump to something else. That was just his way, so if you did not know how to understand a hillbilly, you might not even know a thing he was talking about. I am thankful to God, that He used this humble man to speak some wonderful, and very deep things, but He hid it from the wise and prudent and revealed it to the simple, the humble, the ones that are willing to listen and say, Dear God, please help me understand what I am supposed to understand. When I look back at that period of time after the death of Bro. William Branham, I did not realize why God kept pushing me and urging me to go on. I can look back now and say, It was the grace of God that kept me pressing on, because everywhere I went it was nothing but criticism and accusations, He is not in the message. When you face that constantly, yet in your heart you want to be everybody’s friend, after awhile it takes a toll on you. I simply could not understand, If we are all Christians, why is there so much animosity everywhere I go? As I look back now, I understand that the animosity was coming from carnal minded people who were, and still are void of revelation. They just hang on to the fact that Bro. William Branham was God’s prophet messenger to this age, without having a revelation as to the purpose God had in calling him to that ministry. His ministry did not do for them, what it did for those of us who received by revelation what he preached, and understand why he preached it.
MODERN DAY IDOLATRY
Coming into the year 1967, everything under the sun was being propagated by men within the overall following of Bro. William Branham’s ministry. You could hear, He is the white horse rider of Revelation 19, he is the Messiah the Jews were looking for, he is the absolute, everything he says is infallible and all such foolishness as that. That is why all such can be called idolaters, because they have become worshipers of a mortal man, attributing to him that which belongs only to God the Father (a sovereign Spirit) and His only begotten Son Jesus, the Christ, which is the ONLY PERSON of the godhead. The unadulterated Word of God is infallible, but that terminology cannot be attributed to any mortal man that God calls to preach or speak forth HIS infallible Word. Anything Bro. William Branham spoke, containing a revelation of God’s Word, that is infallible, but anywhere he spoke to you in a human term, that is not infallible. That is why I have said many times, God allowed, or permitted this man to speak many times in dual terms about the same subject. He might preach something, and six months later, say something just the opposite of what he preached while under the anointing of the Holy Ghost. This very thing, is what makes a lot of the educated preachers say, You cannot understand what he is talking about. God knew what He was doing, when He ordained this man for the ministry he fulfilled. He was a prophet: we know that for sure, because God used him in that capacity. God knew there was going to be people in the end time, that would only look at the human side and worship the man, but that does not keep those who have a revelation from honoring him for what God anointed him to do. Those who worship his flesh, never see a thing he was trying to point them to. They have all kinds of excuses for looking to him as they do, because they can see that he was a prophet, but God will not accept any of their excuses for becoming idolaters. Gentiles had never had a prophet before, so it literally stupefied many people. I was privileged by the grace of God, to see the man both as a brother in the family of God; and also as a prophet messenger to this age. Many times I heard him say things, and later heard him say something just the opposite, but God gave me grace to deal with it in my life. For instance, I knew the man long before he ever preached the seventy weeks of Daniel: I believe it was in the year 1962, that I came to know he was a man that believed there were only three and a half years left of the 70th week of Daniel. Well at that time, that never bothered me, because I had never made a study of it. Then when for one entire week he dealt with the subject, the seventy weeks of Daniel, he proved by the scriptures, that there is still one full week left to be fulfilled. All along the way, he emphatically showed that there is seven years yet to be fulfilled of that prophecy. I took that and went to God in prayer concerning it. I fasted and prayed as I sought the truth. I have the same history books that he had. When I carefully studied this for a period of time, I came up with the conclusion, yes, there has got to be seven full years of that period left. Then, in March and April 1963, when he preached the seals, he goes right back to that three and one half years that he formerly believed and just left it that way, that there are only three and one half years left to the Jew. I tell you saints, this set some minds in a spin. I am not going to elaborate on that though, but I do want to say that God ordained that for a reason, knowing there would be some people absolutely blown away. Some people might ask, Why do you say that Bro. Jackson? Keep in mind brothers and sisters, that when certain ones came to John the Baptist one day, questioning him, because the priests at Jerusalem sent them to go ask him who he was, he plainly told them. When you read this account in the gospel of St. John, John the Baptist told them, I am not Him, I am just the voice of one crying in the wilderness, make His paths straight and so forth. He said, but lo, there is one standing among you somewhere, when He comes on the scene, (notice how John, who was the forerunner of the first advent, that forerunner said these words) He will indeed baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire. Did he not say that? Well Jesus did not do that while He was still walking on earth among them. That was actually fulfilled after He had finished His three and a half year ministry in person, been crucified, resurrected and ascended into heaven, where He was seated on the right hand of the Father as the High Priest, the Mediator, the intercessor for you and me and all who believe and accept His word. Therefore when John said, who will indeed baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire, whose fan is in His hand, what did he mean? Well saints, for two thousand years, Jesus has not been here in person, baptizing people with the Holy Ghost and fire, so how do we look at that? We have to realize, that is part of His intercessory work. He said, I will pray the Father and He will send you another comforter to do such and such. Well what about the part that says, (Luke 3:17) “Whose fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor, and will gather the wheat into His garner; but the chaff He will burn with fire unquenchable?” We have to realize that this means Jesus will still have, at the end of the age, the authority to separate something, and relegate it to designated places. He will do it by causing certain things to be said down here on earth, not Him in person, but He will use the words of men or a man, to set winds of doctrine blowing, that will do the separating. Only God Himself knows, that when Bro. William Branham made all those dual statements about certain things, how people who were void of revelation on how to take those things and put them back into the context of the word of God, would take them and build them into a revelation of their own thinking, regardless of how carnal their ideas might be. Those winds have blown all over this world in the years since Bro. William Branham’s death, just blown, and blown and blown. They have separated people all over this world, dividing people and causing them to break fellowship, break friendship, and hold grudges, all because of things Bro. William Branham said, things that could not be properly understood without the Holy Ghost leadership. I have said for years, If you did not have the Holy Ghost leading you, somewhere one of these statements would hit you and send you off somewhere. That is why people have taken his quotes and things and without knowing how to take them back into the scriptures, which he came to restore us to, back to the faith of the fathers, they have gone ever which way. This seals book, will not take you back to the faith of the fathers: It is the book of a man, that tells you how to get back into the Book of all books, the Bible. Even though some will not respect what I have said, it is still true, that the seals book is not the faith of the fathers. It tells you something of what the faith of the fathers was, and there are revelations written in it, but that which we need to take hold of for sure, is right back here, in the book Bro. William Branham preached from, the holy Bible. He got his revelation of those seals, only after studying his Bible and seeking God for what He would have him to say. After his death, it seemed like every time I turned around, especially those first three years, it was nothing but criticism everywhere I went. Why? Because I refused to make Bro. William Branham my God. I express it like that, because so many of them believed like they did. They rejected me, but God did not reject me. Praise His holy name!
EXPERIENCING GOD’S LEADERSHIP
In 1967, toward the end of that year, there was a place in Missouri I had been going, usually twice a year for a meeting. They had called me and wanted me to come for a fellowship during the weekend of the holidays, between Christmas and New Years. I had planned to go, because this was planned weeks in advance. Just a few days before that time, I had a tooth that began to hurt. I went to a dentist, and he was going to fill it, but when he drilled into it, he saw that it was abscessed. It would do no good to fill it, so he had to pull it. I came home thinking everything would be OK, but when I woke up the next morning, evidently that infection had already spread down into my shoulder. As time drew closer for me to go to the place in Missouri, I kept saying, Lord, this soreness in my shoulder, the way it is hurting, how will I be able to go? God allowed this to keep me from going, because He knew what it would turn into. I have always tried to keep my word, when I would promise something, but God saw fit to keep me out of a trap. I went to sleep very troubled the night before I was to get up the next morning to leave, because my shoulder was hurting so terribly bad. I thought, Lord, I don’t know what to do. Well to show you the grace of God on my behalf, I had a dream during the night. In it, I saw myself arrive out there, and go into the home I had been in many times before. I saw myself walk into the house, then into a certain room where I saw five chairs sitting in a semi circle. When I saw them, I knew the other preachers had been sitting there, and that I had been the topic of their conversation. I thought, I know exactly what they have said. Just then, Bro. William Branham walked in, (in my dream, in 1967) and He said these words to me, (He always called me Bro. Junie.) Bro. Junie, they will no longer receive you here, go south. I looked at him and he again said, Bro. Junie, they will no longer receive you here, go south. When I woke up from that dream, and my shoulder was still hurting so terribly, I realized there was no way I could drive out there, so I called those people and told them what had happened with my tooth. I used that as my excuse, but I knew from that moment on, that I would never be invited back to that area again. I have not been either. I have asked myself many times, Why was Bro. William Branham’s image portrayed to me like that? What was God doing this for, two years after his death? I will say to you here and now, In all the years since then, that has been God’s way of leading me to make a stand for truth, and to testify to the truth the man brought to this generation, and to do it scripturally, in a way that He (God) could vindicate it. Moving on into the year 1968, I began to go to South Carolina and those places south of our area. There, is where people began to accept my ministry after those trying times. I do not say that everybody did, but a lot of people began to accept what I had to teach; and from there God made the way. All along the way, I have met the critics that would say, But Bro. Jackson, why this and why that, and what did the prophet say about this, and why did he say so and so? At that time it was pretty hard to deal with, when you had all these accusations and critical remarks thrown at you. Nevertheless as I look back, I can see now, that God was slowly guiding me and directing me. At no time back then, did I ever see myself, my ministry, becoming a world wide thing. As time went on, I just kept going where God would open the door for me to go. As I look back, whenever I got to a place I felt hard pressed and discouraged, God always sent that man’s image to me, to encourage me. The reason I say this, is because all along the way, I have never desired to be looked upon as a big person. I have never desired to be known the world over. That was never in my thoughts: I just purposed in my heart, to do what God led me to do, and when I have done it, I just wanted to be able to sit down and enjoy being a part of God’s great family. However after being allowed to go around this world four times, and after being in every major area of this world, I cannot fail to realize God has more for me to do than what I formerly envisioned. In 1969 we started printing the Contender. At that time, I never even thought of it as being a magazine that would last a long time. I felt like I had a few things I would like to put in print, and of course that was those seven messages I have mentioned from time to time. Over the period of weeks and months, little by little, God gave those things to me by divine revelation. Those were the first things that were put in print. During the thirty five and a half years of printing, we have printed many articles; and God has put this paper in every nation on the face of this earth, and in places I could never have gotten into in person. God has seen fit to get it into those places somehow. It is interesting to hear some of the testimonies of how certain ones got hold of the Contender through the years. I have received many letters from different places where the Spoken Word people had already been there, and already had groups of people formed, so when the Contender would get there, many would set up against it, speak evil of it and use it for purposes other than reading, even to wrap Spoken Word Books in for shipping to other places; and that is how a few people received their first copy and was able to write and request it. Others in those same groups would take hold of it, read it and study it. Over a period of years as they really began to see what the Contender was dealing with, I have received letters from individuals that would say, Bro. Jackson: you have made the teaching of Bro. William Branham easy to understand: We now know what he was talking about. Thank you for straightening us out. In all these thirty some years, you do not know the number of letters I have received from different parts of the world, wherever the doctrines and the teachings of just quotes of Bro. William Branham has been received, and how they would thank me for helping them understand his teaching and his calling of God. Those Spoken word Groups grew very fast for a while, but after so long they began to get very discouraged. Without any further guidance, many of the groups began to disintegrate, simply because one would get this idea, and another would read and get a different idea, and others getting their private interpretations of his messages, so when nothing became stable, they would just give up. In other areas, where people received the Contender, they were becoming stabilized, simply because the Contender helped them understand those things they could not understand just from reading Spoken Word Books and listening to quotes. Those people have written to me and said, Bro. Jackson, some of the message people are coming to us now, and we are able to help them, because the Contender makes things so plain. I just have to thank God for that. He is the One that has led me through these many years.
A WORD TO THOSE WHO WILL RECEIVE IT
I want to bring in something at this point, because it fits right into my line of thought. I know from the Spoken Word standpoint, how this rubs them, because I get letters and calls that reveal their thinking. The e-mail I received from a critic this afternoon, lets me know what they believe I am doing. They think I am out here trying to condemn and run down the message of Bro. William Branham. The truth is, I stand firmly for what he was and what he delivered to this age. I will not do it now, but when I am finished with this message, I will have something to say to those who condemn me and my ministry. When I end this particular subject, I will endeavor to speak to you that have sent your critical remarks, because you have not heard me right. I know what kind of people you are, that you are blind, self centered, one sided, and that all you want to do is sit in the road with your feet crossed and keep innocent people under your spell. You do not pray and ask God to help you, because your mind is already made up. Well I have a little prayer that just fits you. When you go to bed at night just pray, Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep, if I should die before I wake, O Lord I pray it is not too late. That is just about the way some of them preach and pray, because I know, that if they ever really get serious about praying and studying the Bible, God will show them something more than what they see right now. I have always said, If God gives you the Holy Ghost, He is not going to let the devil keep you ignorant forever. Jesus said this, speaking to those who followed Him, (John 16:13) “Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come. (John 16:14) He shall glorify me: for He shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you.” That applies to anyone who seeks God with his or her whole heart, if their motives are pure. I say to all of you, This walk we have walked, this battle that we have fought, has not always been easy. I have said everywhere I ever went, from Norway to Africa, to India and the Philippines, By the grace of Almighty God, I am standing for the truth that man brought to this generation, until God raises up a ministry that will fulfill the ranks that the man spoke of. He fulfilled his part and did it humbly, and did not pick out one by one, those who would follow the leading of the Lord to lead the Bride Church to perfection. The Holy Spirit does that. All over this world, there has been another generation of people dealt with since his death, young people that were not even born in the 1960’s, and some not even in the 1970’s. I thank God, that some of them have been born into families right here in this congregation. They have grown up here, they only know what we have stood for and preached to them. I would have to say, If they had to put up with all this nonsense, like a lot of other young people in some places, they would know the heartache that goes with this message, and the confusion that it can cause, but God has spared them. There are some people born into this world, that are content with just anything they hear: They wonder why there are problems that come with walking with God. The true Christian faith has always been faced with a battle. When you see how the apostle Paul wrote the different epistles, many times he wrote concerning the things that a particular church had been going through. He would always write things to encourage them, and to admonish them. He always instructed them on how to avoid certain things, and especially how to deal with certain teachings, because it was the devil’s business back then, and always has been his business to upset Christians, even confuse them and throw their mind off course, if given the chance. As Christians, we need to stay on guard at all times, lest he get us off the foundation of our faith. Anyone can become discouraged at times, but we have a sure foundation that will enable us to withstand all the storms of life and claim victory over them all. The devil has always tried to wreck every work of God: That is his business, but as the years have come and gone, God has always guided me by sending me a dream at the precise time I needed it. Looking back now, I can see why, because God was using that man’s image to push me on, to fulfill the ministry that He (God) had called me into. You have never heard me say that I am the only one, but I can say now, Yes, God called me to be an apostle, and you that are sitting out there listening, that want to criticize and say, Well if you were, you would have this and that. I am going to read you something later, to let you know that God has done this in such a humble way, He has left you hypocrites sitting on the sideline, because the very man you have confidence in, said it that way. That is why I said this morning, It is one thing for Bro. William Branham to have said the Bride will have a ministry, and that it would be the ministry of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers; and it was yet another thing when he said it would be so great and so humble. It will not be put on TV, radio or anything else just for a show: God will keep it in the background while the other element is running ahead, sowing their seeds. Think of the multitudes tonight, that are still looking for Bro. William Branham to come back from the dead. No wonder the denominational writers speak of the followers of Bro. William Branham as being a cult. I did not start it: that bunch of characters out there started it. No matter what anyone may say, I will still defend the man’s name, what he preached, why he preached it; and I will not hesitate to remind you of the mess some of his closest followers have made out of what he stood for. That bunch that is forever criticizing me, do not even have a clue as to what that man contributed to the perfecting of the bride of Christ. No. It is not going to be quotes from his messages, that will enlighten the bride Church: It will be the revelation the five fold ministry has received from the Spirit of God, as they have taken those things he opened up to this generation and sought God for the fullness of what he pointed us to. That is why I am thankful to God today, that He has allowed me to meet people that have seen what we are talking about. That is why I appreciate every one of you, my brothers and sisters, young and old alike. You have trusted in something, or you would not be here. God is just about ready to wind this thing up; and many of you hearing my voice right now, will live to see the end of God’s dealing with the Bride Church. What a day that will be!
READING FROM THE SEALS BOOK
I have quite a few places marked in the seals book, that I want to read to you as we go along. I want to talk about this thing, the third pull, that Bro. William Branham spoke of. I am on page 559, actually starting at the bottom of page 558, the last paragraph, where he is explaining how God dealt with him in the mountains, as he was getting ready to come back here in March and April 1963, to preach on the seals.( I sat there when every bit of this was preached.) This is one reason we have this chart up here behind me. The chart goes way back, starting with the apostolic hour. This mystery has come all through the ages, but when we come to that era of time, that is when God started the unfolding of the third pull. That is why the element that followed his flesh, still believe he has to come back and finish the third pull, the tent ministry, and also to preach the trumpets and the vials, to tie all the loose ends together. Do any of you think God has just been waiting around for thirty eight years, doing nothing whatsoever, waiting for a time when He will resurrect Bro. William Branham to finish a ministry? There, are your trumpets and vials right there. (pointing to chart) They have been preached, put in print and sent the world over, years ago. Never, has any critic rebuked me for it. Let us read.
“Remember, Satan will try to impersonate! He’ll try to impersonate everything that the Church will do. He’s tried to do it. We’ve noticed it through the antichrist; (meaning through the Dark Ages) but this is one thing he cannot impersonate. (What about that? What is there about it, that makes it so hard to impersonate?) There’ll be no mimics to this, see, because he don’t know it! (Meaning the devil knows nothing about it.) There’s no way for him to know it. It’s the Third Pull. He just knows nothing about it, see. He doesn’t understand it.” He is talking about the third pull. He is in the mountains, he tells about it back here. We will go to page 562, near the bottom of the page. “Oh, what a day we’re living in-what a great thing. See the mystery and secret? The Third…Standing there, when this left me, something just come to me and said, “Don’t fear.” Now, I didn’t hear a voice–like on the inside of me spoke. I just tell you the truth, just exactly what happened. (He is talking about what happened up in the mountains.) Something hit and said, “Don’t fear. This is that Third Pull.” I want to say at this time, The Third Pull, had nothing whatsoever to do with divine healing. Let us get that settled. Now we go to page 564. “And in Sabino Canyon, (That is where he was.) He said, “This is the Third Pull.” And there’s three great things that goes with it, and one unfolded today…(He was talking about this, after he was back here.) or yesterday, the other one unfolded today, and there’s one thing that I cannot interpret because it’s in an unknown language. As I stand right there and looked right straight at it, and this is the Third Pull coming up. And the Holy Spirit of God…Oh my! That’s the reason all Heaven was silent!” Now everybody becomes mystified at the way God speaks to him in such a supernatural way, this great man of God. I have to say, He was a prophet; and that is the way God dealt with him. That is why those people sat there so mystified. I can say this, After he preached those six seals, they do not know a bit more about what the Third Pull was to be, than a dog knows about making lollipops. I know they despise to hear me say this, but I want to agitate them a little bit, for the way they have agitated a lot of people around this world, with their head strong, set in concrete ideas that are not worth the breath it takes to speak them. They sit in the road trying to control the whole thing; and they know nothing about it. God sent that man to turn a people back to His God’s) Word, to become a supernatural Church; not a bunch of dead people, holding quotes, quotes, quotes. You who are called to be in the bride, are to be a reproduction of the same kind of people that knew what it was to talk to a true and living God, and to have a true and living God living in their heart, a God that can lead you, guide you, and direct you. Is it not written, As many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God? It is essential, that we be led of God. We still have much more, before we finish this message.
THIS MESSAGE IS GOING TO BE VERY DIFFERENT THAN MOST OF WHAT WE HAVE DEALT WITH IN THE PAST, BECAUSE WE NEED TO KNOW FOR SURE WHAT PUTTING ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST REALLY PERTAINS TO. WE ARE ADMONISHED IN THE SCRIPTURES TO DO THAT, SO WE NEED TO KNOW EXACTLY HOW TO GO ABOUT IT. IF TIME IS AS CLOSE TO THE COMING OF THE LORD AS WE HAVE REASON TO BELIEVE IT IS, THERE IS VERY LITTLE TIME LEFT FOR DRESSING OURSELVES SPIRITUALLY, THE WAY BRIDE SAINTS ARE GOING TO HAVE TO BE DRESSED TO BE ACCEPTABLE TO THE BRIDEGROOM WHEN HE COMES. PUTTING ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE OUTER GARMENTS WE COVER OUR FLESH WITH, NOR THE WAY WE CUT, OR DO NOT CUT OUR HAIR, IT PERTAINS TO HOW WE ALLOW HIM TO MOLD US WITHIN, IN HIS OWN IMAGE. WHEN WE ARE RIGHT ON THE INSIDE, WE WILL NATURALLY REFLECT IT ON THE OUTSIDE. THAT IS WHAT OUR LORD IS MOVING US TOWARD DAY BY DAY, IF WE HAVE DETERMINED IN OUR HEART TO FOLLOW HIM IN THE WAY OF TRUTH. YOU WILL FIND THE TEXT FOR THIS MESSAGE IN ROMANS 13:14, SO LET US OPEN OUR BIBLES TO THAT SCRIPTURE AND SEE WHAT THE LORD WILL LEAD US TO SEE.
There is something going on in America today that is very disturbing, even though we know that what we are seeing is foretold in the written word of God. It is just that knowing how the American society was sixty and seventy years ago, it is very sad to see what it is turning into in this hour of time. I just have to say, If we really do know the Lord, let us do everything within our power to submit our will to Him, to let Him mold our inner being and make us the kind of Christians He will be coming back for. That is why we are going to talk about putting on the Lord Jesus Christ. Here, is what the scripture says, (Rom 13:14) “But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provisions for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.” That is a very short, but most important passage of scripture. How are we going to put on the Lord Jesus Christ? What does it involve? Does this involve just a certain type of clothing? Does it pertain to a certain way we cut our hair, or does it pertain to not trimming our hair? Should we let the hair grow as long as it can possibly grow? In the religious systems of America today, we have had all of that preached from the pulpit, but this particular scripture speaks of none of that. Our outward adornment means very little, if our inner being is not properly adorned, spiritually speaking. Denominations have had their day of teaching their dress codes to portray holiness, but the truth is, our outward appearance can be very hypocritical. I will point you to the external side of things by calling attention to the thousands of Muslims living in America. If you consider that shrouded look to be holiness, I must remind you that underneath that robe, is a human vessel filled with hate much of the time. Yes. It is hate! I know what our politicians are saying, Oh the Muslim religion is not really motivated by an anti-Christian spirit: They are a peaceful religion. They are not a peaceful religion! I know better. I have read enough about Muslimism to know something about those who follow it. Ever since it was started by Mohammed, Muslimism, as a religion, has not gained its converts by preaching: They have gained them with the sword. Every bit of it was done by wars and conflicts of conquering. They go at it to create fear and oppression. They have a certain look of external holiness, but oh how deceptive. To them, that is what they call it, but I will be quick to say, Underneath that pious appearance, is a spirit of hate and malice. They hate the very ground you and I walk on. Even if you dress exactly like them, if you dare to call yourself a Christian, they would still hate you. I do not mean to say that every Muslin in America today has that kind of hate for us, but many do. I say there are a few of them that have come here to get away from that stinking mess in the old countries where they were born and raised. They have heard about America as a land of freedom. They have come here to enjoy that, but they want to hold on to that Muslim robe. We heard a certain general make a statement the other day, and it was not long until they were jumping on his character, trying to tear him all to pieces. My point is this, They are going to get by with that for a while, but there is an undertow in America that is gnawing away. It is like a disease. The country that you and I have been born and raised in, is going to be gnawed to pieces in the foundational structure. Of all the nations in the world, this was one nation that God founded and established on Christian principles, using Christian people from the old world of Europe, those who had experienced the Reformation in Europe and knew what had been accomplished in the restoration of truth. God honored them. Therefore very slowly, this nation was cut out of the wilderness. Over a period of time, our society became governed by a system of government that wanted freedom. They did not establish any certain type of belief, but they believed as long as it was concerning Jesus Christ and that God was to be Supreme, that would be the essence of every person in America. Over a period of years, practically every branch of the Reformation found its roots in America. No matter what their attitude was about the external look of holiness, most all of them had a look that far supercedes most of the holiness movements of today. They grew up to have a respect for what they visualized in the word of God, that which requires a holy appearance, and believed Christians should present their bodies a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God. I am not standing here today, just to touch on these external things. I first want to say this, True holiness is not depending on what you may have hanging in your wardrobe. Let us get that part straight, concerning what the book (Bible) says about holiness. You can go to your wardrobe and put on this, put on that, you can go before the mirror, comb your hair, and say, Well I look holy now, but what about the inner you? Is it holy? That may be the way some people look at holiness, but that is not the entire picture of true holiness. The true spirit of holiness begins to deal with the inner you first, that which is the real you, (called the inner man) that man that thinks, that man that can get jealous, that man that can hate, that man that can talk one time positive, and another time negative. In other words, True holiness which is within, naturally expresses itself outwardly without hypocrisy.
WHAT SAITH THE WORD OF GOD?
I am going to read a few verses that I want us to think about. When we read the text, “Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ,” The writer was not talking about going to the wardrobe to do that: He was talking about going to the word of God, because in the word of God, we find the apparel that we must put on if we truly have been born again. The new birth has nothing to do with your fleshly body. However proper spiritual attire will affect the fleshly man in a sense, but not until that inner self is born again. That inner man has got to have contact with God in His saving grace, before he can experience anything concerning spiritual attire. There is where we are going to find everything this text pertains to: right in the word of God. Turn with me to Romans 8, at this time. This is a chapter that deals with the works of the flesh, the lusts of the flesh and so forth, which is concerning the natural man that we are from birth. Then it goes on and talks about the spiritual man, the inner man. Therefore do not go away from here and say that I said nothing about clothing. I have seen people put on certain things that would give them a very holy appearance to the natural eye, but underneath that cloak, they can be just as aggravating as the devil himself, and you can hardly tolerate their very presence. That is the truth: I have seen it over and over. I am going to begin to use some examples after awhile, that will show you what I mean by that. Paul writes in the Roman letter, (chapter 8, verse 1) “There is therefore now (present tense) no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, (Being in Christ Jesus, is not determined by how you put your clothes on, it is how you were put in there by the new birth and the receiving of the Holy Ghost. That is what puts you in the mystical body of Christ. In the King James Bible we find the following words.) who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” (These last words were added by the translators, which speak of how we walk when we truly are in Christ Jesus, but certainly were not meant to be a condition of our salvation as it sounds here.)When Paul wrote this, it really did have an affect on early Christendom, how they lived, how they walked and conducted themselves. “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” Now as I read that, some people make remarks, Well I have heard that before: I wish he would preach something else. I am not pointing the finger at anybody this morning, but I ask you, Let’s be sensible. First, Are you living in a way that you need not hear anything from God’s word about proper conduct as a Christian? How many epistles did the apostle Paul write? Actually 14, and in most of them he mentions something about the Law. The Law was the biggest problem of early Christians in their day. You everyone know that. Why? Because somebody out of the rear ranks of the Law, was always wanting to come along and put their ideas about the Law into Christianity, mixing it with Grace, putting it on the Christian people as a must. Paul constantly had to deal with that. When we get a true picture of what Paul was dealing with concerning the Law, what it was for, what it was applicable for, and what the grace of God is beyond the law, you have an altogether different picture of what the Christian life really is. “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak (Weak because it could not do what grace does) through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh.” Therefore God heaped upon Jesus the reproaches, the sin, all of our faults and wrong doings, and a totally innocent man who did no wrong Himself, paid the full price for the sin of all mankind; and grace is there for all who will accept it. He died in your place and in my place. “That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (Those words belong there in verse 4, but not on the end of verse 1.) For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh.” We see this more and more in the modern Christian ranks of this hour of time. As we came through Elizabeth this morning, (I have made reference to this before.) I looked at the back of the old Methodist Church, where they have now built on a huge entertainment addition. The various religions of the denominational systems in America today, have become a means of entertaining the people with a religious approach. That ranges from games to dances and various other kinds of programs. They do these things, all in the name of Christianity, trying to entertain the people enough to keep them coming. When you see them go in there, they look exactly like the ones you see walking around the Mall. There is no difference in the image they present. That is because the leaders have the idea, Well, we have to do something to keep them from the world. What good is it bringing them in there, when they are bringing the image of the world right in there with them? They look exactly like the world. It just proves their contact with God was cut off a long time ago. When there is no revelation in the heart of a person or persons who are trying to gain converts to Christ, all they could ever hope to do is make church members, but certainly not born again Christians. Therefore you cannot really expect anything other than what they have, a religious club. Even if they did put on a holy look and everything else, it would not do them one dime’s worth of good, spiritually speaking. That is why I have said over and over, Religion is not good enough to please God: It takes a born again experience and a dedicated life to fulfill the requirements and expectations of genuine salvation. I want to try to say these things the right way, so as not to give a wrong opinion to anyone. True holiness comes when you receive a genuine revelation of God’s word in your heart and live your life by the leadership of the Spirit of God. It is not just a matter of receiving a religious concept and trying to reform your image. You can formulate in your mind, you will not do this any more, you will not do that any more, you will not wear this any more, nor that any more, but if you do not have a revelation on how Jesus Christ wants to be molded inside you, it is not going to do you a bit of good. You are just putting on a show. That is why, ever since the days of the Reformation, practically all the elements of Christianity that fled Europe and came over here, have established their roots here. You can travel America over, you will find the Amish, the Mennonites, the Pilgrim Holiness, the Nazareenes, all of which have a concept of their way of looking at holiness, but if that is all they see, they have not put Jesus Christ on the inner man: they have only formed a religious concept to live by. I have been around some of them in earlier days. When I was younger, up in the northern part of the state and on into Michigan, I have preached among some of the Amish people that had left the Amish movement and came into the following of Bro. William Branham’s teaching. I went to some of their meetings. They still used horses and buggies for their transportation, but they did have enough of the grace of God that it caused them to leave that old system. What usually got them started, there would be a sick one in the family somewhere, they would take them to one of Bro. William Branham’s meetings for prayer. When he prayed for the sick person and the person was healed, that caused them to leave the Amish system and start fellowshiping around what they thought Bro. William Branham stood for. There was nothing wrong with that, but it has got to go deeper than that. A dedicated, Christian life comes from a personal experience with the Lord Jesus Christ, the ONE who paid our sin debt and set us free from the bondage of Satan.
A HOLY LIFE V/S CARNAL PRETENSION
We each one must have a personal experience with Jesus Christ and a revelation of the word of God in our own heart. If we do not, then we are trying to formulate a religious, holy appearance, that does not do us one bit of good spiritually. Many times, some of these supposed-to-be holiness people would let something come along that aggravated and upset them; and they had no patience, no longsuffering, nothing to hold them steadfast through the trial, and the first thing you knew they were talking about their neighbor and just plain bent out of shape, all because they had nothing inside to control that impatient and explosive attitude. As long as you don’t bug them, cross them up or anything, they look good, but when something does come along that aggravates that old nature inside, you have something on your hands you did not expect. Jesus Christ is not like that, and neither are those who have sold out to live for Him. Let me read further here. “For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh.” It is that way in the religious world today, more and more all the time. The old, cold, dead denominational churches are leaning more and more to the flesh all the time: The styles they used to avoid, they now go for them, saying, Well, This is how everyone else is, so what is wrong with it? When the world begins to have sway over the flesh man, and people that used to have a certain image because of conviction of what they wanted to look and conduct themselves like, begin to drift away from that image and start dressing and conducting themselves exactly like the worldly crowd, the only difference between them is, The totally worldly crowd are on the streets, in the honky tonks and places of debauchery, and you are sitting somewhere in a church house, pretending that you are righteous. That is not righteousness at all: It is just religion; and religion will not gain you access to the presence of God. “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.” No matter what kind of religious attitude you may have, if there is not something that motivates from the inner man, something that wants you to live a certain image that you feel like God is pleased with, and that He wants you to portray yourself in, you are only putting on a show. Sooner or later, something down the road somewhere, will come at you, hit you face on; and pretty soon you are all upset and misbehaving. “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. (Notice what this says.) Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His.” That goes to show, we are not in Christ just by some kind of belief: We are only in Christ by the experience of being filled with the Holy Spirit. That is what seals you and frees you from all condemnation. “And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you.” In other words, He will give you the ability to let your old nature be crucified, so it no longer rules your will. Your own will becomes subject to the Spirit of Christ.”Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” Having said what I have so far, I now want to touch on a few examples I have personally witnessed through the years. As we have already said, holiness has been preached in such a way that you are given the idea it is all in how you look to the natural eye. I have heard it preached from the top of the head down to the ankles. Yet if you watch the system of the religion that is presented that way, they do not have a revelation of the scriptures that is worth one dime. I am not belittling anyone in particular, but I do have to say, I feel sorry for spiritually blind, good intentioned people that cannot see where they are going. Now concerning the Muslims, when you take a look at their clothing and their long hair and the covering over their face, you necessarily say to yourself, Abraham, whom they recognize as their progenitor, never required that of Sarah. She did not have to look like that. Think about that for awhile. Where do they get such an idea? When Abraham and Sarah came from the land of the Chaldeans and came into Canaan land, she did not look like that. How do you know that, Bro. Jackson? Simply because Abraham, coming into the land of the drought, headed for Egypt. When he and Sarah were getting close to Egypt, what did he say to Sarah? They are going to see your beauty. Well how could they see her beauty if she had something tied over her face and you could only see her eyes? You have all read the story. Even Abimilech at one time, said the same thing. He was a Philistine. My point is, They claim a lot of things that look holy, but where is reality? It is manmade tradition, that they portray as holy. I want to say, True holiness has to come down to the point that you are satisfied in your heart, that you know what Christ has done for you. You begin to look at your inner self, and search the word of God to find out what He requires of you. You begin to realize, I want to treat my neighbor with the same respect I would want from him. The devil can always come along and agitate something in me, but if I am a true Christian, I am going to recognize that thing before I open this big mouth and allow my fleshly nature to express itself. Religion has absolutely put on a cloak that is as false as false can be. I do not condemn every individual person, but I do have to say, That is not the way it works. When you put on the Lord Jesus Christ, you put on gentleness, goodness, longsuffering, meekness, temperance, love, joy, peace, and the element that makes all of that possible is your faith in God to enable you to do what is right in every situation. In your zeal, before you were crossed up, you were ready to go out and set the world on fire for the Lord Jesus Christ. Many new converts are just like that, but very few have the necessary requirements to fulfill such an ambition. I find in my Bible, that when we really do put on the Lord Jesus Christ, we put on all those virtues we just mentioned. We learn how to love the other person correctly, even when it is difficult. It is true, not every believer is required to measure up to the same measure of the fruit bearing. Just try to listen to me, to what I am trying to bring out of the scriptures. When Jesus spoke about the sower that went forth to sow seed, that which fell on good ground, when it comes forth, what will it do? In some, it will bring forth thirty fold, others sixty fold, and the rest one hundred fold. That literally means, that according to their ability, God gives them grace enough to rise up out of that old stubborn, self willed nature that would have driven them to ruin somewhere down the road of life, and enabled them to come to their senses and realize how much more joyful it is to let God begin to control that impatient and short temper, than to just let the devil have his way through the fleshly side of things. I have to say, The divine nature of Christ is going to be cultivated in every true believer, to fulfill the purpose of God in that life. I will say this also, so listen carefully. As the actual divine nature is cultivated in the believer, and is allowed to bear forth fruit in the believer through trials and tests, regardless of the severity, they little by little learn the great joy of allowing God to make a way for them. As they grow in the grace of God, eventually it is going to put on an outer man that looks like something has happened to him inwardly. It is going to put on a look of true holiness that will be easily recognized by others. The point is, If we are just going to put it on the outside only, in clothing and such as would give us a holy look outward, and never let this inner man be touched by the grace of God, we are absolutely just playing church and making a mess of things, rather than doing anything that would glorify the Lord. A lot of it depends on what we believe, and how we believe it. For years, the Methodists and Baptists were like this, The Baptists said the Methodists only preached sanctification; and the Methodists said the Baptists only preached eternal security, Which is once saved, always saved. They never did get together on that, because they did not honestly seek a true revelation of God’s word.
REVELATION SETTLES ALL CONTROVERSY
If we are ever going to look at the scriptures right, we have to have the Holy Spirit inside, because there is no such thing from the standpoint of the Bible, that you are saved one day and lost six months later and need to get saved again. I will challenge anyone to show me that kind of picture in the Bible. You were only born into this world physically, one time. However you may have been sick many times. Is that not right? Well why can we not see the spiritual birth in the same reality? Don’t you think the devil can hit your spirit being hard enough at times, that you get very weak, disheartened and even disgusted, so that you walk around with your head hung down and appear as one who has lost something precious? When you are asked, How do you feel? You reply, I feel terrible. Well you look that way too, when you begin to let your inner feelings have the preeminence on the outside. My point is, If you were ever really born again any time before then, birth only happens one time. If the word of God is preached correctly to you, sooner or later the Lord is going to send something along to heal that sick soul, and you are going to come out of that sickened condition; and you will not have to be reborn spiritually, as some believe. A lot that has gone on in the holiness realm of religion; and much of what was called salvation, was really just another attempt to reform and follow a set of rules. An evangelist will come along and have a few days of meetings; and yes the spirit of God begins to move on a few people; and this psychologically affects a lot of other people, so that there is a lot of physical action in the altar call. You can hear, This one and that one got saved again. I say, No. They did not; if you are talking about a genuine experience of Holy Ghost salvation. If what anyone receives, is not the grace of God that gets down in the heart and does a work referred to in the scriptures as a new creation, that begins to put that person on a pathway of life where they are going to do everything in their power to live for God, but when a trial hits them, they feel lost again. In such cases, you just have to know they have been converted to religion only. That is why many times in the old holiness realms, the same people that were supposed to have been saved three years ago, have been saved six times since then. There is no such thing possible, biblically. I am sure all of you sitting here today, know that, but many people beyond these walls will hear this message. That is why I have to say, When you put on the Lord Jesus Christ, you are going to do it because you have become dead to self and alive in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is your inner being that controls the deadness to self and submits to the leadership of the Spirit of God. Your inner man gets to the place he no longer feels like he has to live to satisfy this outer man. I dress the same way today, that I did fifty five years ago. I did not grow up thinking it was acceptable to go to the church house looking like a bum. I grew up in a generation of people that had respect for a place of worship. When going to the church house, we went there feeling like we were going into the presence of God, and back then you wanted to look your best at such occasions. However I am not just talking about the mere clothing side of things: I am talking about an attitude of decency and respect. I have seen old farmers come to meetings wearing clean overalls. They did not have anything better to wear, so we are not talking about that: We are talking about what is in control of our inner self. If it is the Lord Jesus Christ, we will want to dress our outer self as clean and proper looking as we possibly can of course, and we will not feel like keeping up with the styles makes us anything special. Neither will we feel like what we have to wear, because it is all we have, makes us anything less than special in the eyes of our Lord. I want to emphasize the fact, that when we put on the Lord Jesus Christ, we are dealing with something that dresses the inner man. We are putting on those virtues that portray moral excellence and spiritual maturity, which in turn leads to being more like Jesus. That is what the apostle Paul was getting at (Eph 4:13), when he said, “Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.” We do not gain that stature instantly: We acquire it by accepting proper teaching and allowing it to little by little enable us to take on the mind of Christ. We have to know how He was before we can be like Him. That is the part we many times struggle with. Coming down through life, if you really let the Lord Jesus Christ get into your life and do that wonderful transformation work in your inner being, sooner or later you are going to begin to see yourself reflected in the scriptures. Just as you go before the mirror, to see how you are going to part your hair and fix it in the back so the cow lick will lay down, so does the word of God allow you to view your inner self, to see what changes need to be made. We can say this, When you stand before the mirror of God’s word, if you are reading it right you will see your inner self as you really are, whether it be good or bad. That should be our aim as we read and study the scriptures, to take a good honest look at our self and allow the word of God to show us what is still missing; and then show us how to apply it to our spiritual growth. Possibly, you have never thought of it like that, but when you approach the word of God the proper way, you are looking at yourself, and seeing the way the Lord wants you to see yourself. If you really let Him into your heart, no matter how long ago it was when you gave your heart to Him, sooner or later He is going to give you an understanding of what He wants you to be, whether you are a man or woman, if you listen carefully, He is going to show you exactly, from the scriptures, what He wants you to look like, both inside and outside. That is where you say, Lord, I see many scriptures that I do not understand, so I ask that you help me, that from these scriptures I may learn how to apply the virtues of your image to my life also. Jesus, in the final analysis of everything, became the fulness of God, having all His divine attributes dwelling in Him. In the human vessel of His Son Jesus the Christ, God bestowed the fullness of Himself, that He might be displayed before all humanity in the time His Son would remain on earth. Therefore after Jesus was baptized, He left the water possessing all the attributes of the great Creator, because God, being a sovereign Spirit, came down to Him in the form of a dove and filled Him (Jesus) with Himself. No. That did not mean God was nowhere else after that, because He fills the entire universe. I know it is difficult for the human mind to visualize this, but by faith we accept this as a fact. We could never find words in the known vocabulary of mankind, that could completely explain God: We just have to be thankful for the revelation He imparts to us when we truly seek Him with our whole heart. He enables His true children to explain the Godhead, which for centuries has been a total mystery to educated minds that think they see three Gods in the scriptures. The truth is, one can never understand very much of what is written in the scriptures until they have a true revelation of the Godhead. When God (Spirit) filled His Son with Himself, He did it in order to be able to demonstrate His very own attributes working through that vessel of flesh. That is why Jesus kept saying, over and over, It is not I that doeth these works, but Him that is in me. Another time He would say, I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things. Does that mean that Jesus could not talk like any other man? Absolutely not. He sure did talk about natural things. I say, that many times as He walked down the road with his disciples, there would come up many natural conversations, and Jesus had a way of expressing Himself that really meant something. The reason I bring this in, is when we study about the man Himself, I see a man who knew how to talk when certain things needed to be talked about. He was not a man of ill temper, even though He got disgusted one time with a bunch of religious characters in the temple, because they had turned the temple into a place of merchandise for their own profit. He got angry at that and rightly so. If we are genuine Christians, born again of the Spirit of God and filled with His Spirit, and honestly desiring to have our inner being made like unto our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, God will honor our desires and enable us to take on that image. Even then though, there are certain things that can come along, which will irk us to the point that we sometimes feel like using a whip on certain ones, but we have to be careful what that thing is, that we see. For instance, when we see this conglomeration of religion out here in the world, the kind of example they are setting for young people, going down the road of life propagating a life style that can never glorify God, and some of what you have to witness is enough to affect your heart and make you feel angry, simply because it does not glorify God in any way. I have used a certain illustration before, and I will use it again, because it shows what some people allow their image to portray. I had an aunt, which a Methodist woman: Her husband’s name was Emmit. When Sunday morning came, she told her husband, Now Emmit, you hurry up and get ready. When she got ready, she had a bun on the back of her head as big as a loaf of bread. She was a Methodist and proud of it. She would then put a hat on over that bun. She had a certain dress she would put on, and she looked just like a holiness Methodist. She would go to church and sit there, saying, Amen. At church she would call her husband, Hubby, always saying, Hubby, isn’t that right? Hubby this or that. All of that sounds real good, but I have seen her get vexed, and when she would get upset you would hear, Emmit, look what you have done. She would go to the bedroom and throw herself across the bed crying. She was headed for a nervous breakdown, because she had a temper that she could not control. When she had one of those spells, you would not want to be around her: The holy appearance was gone. I use this because I have said many times, Going to church when everything was going her way, she looked like a holy woman, but if you saw her at other times, she might look like she could bite your head off. I have to say this morning, Religions in the world today have just been something that people have carried around in their mind. They will put on a little bit of this and a little bit of that to make them look according to what is expected of them, but I have to say, That is not putting on the Lord Jesus Christ: That is putting on a deceptive front. Putting on the Lord Jesus Christ is an expression of a divine nature within and that enables you to know exactly how to talk. You know exactly how to communicate with your brother or sister in the Lord. We even have holiness type people today, that when they do meet people in the Kroger or Walmart stores, people who do not look as holy as they do, they treat them as if they smell like a skunk. I am just using that to illustrate something to you. Did not Jesus say you are the salt of the earth? Why did He use such terminology? We are expected as Christians, to give proper respect to everyone; unless it is obvious they are abominable in the sight of the Lord. I have to say, Jesus Christ never treated the average man of the world like he was the scum of the earth. Do you understand my point? Ever since getting married, I have lived in the little town of Elizabeth. The old store is gone now, but when it stood on one corner at the four way stop, I would go there once in awhile to pick up some groceries. (I do not say this to brag, but to glorify my Savior that saved my wretched soul one day and put inside of me an outlook of how I should conduct myself.) I have always treated everybody in Elizabeth with respect, whether I met them in that store or some other place: I would say, Good morning and call them by name. Many times, I would shake their hand. I always treated them like descent human beings. Therefore I will never forget an incident one morning: When I pulled up beside the store and parked, there was a man standing there who used to be in the New Albany police department. He retired from there and became the town marshal of Elizabeth. I went into the grocery store and got some items and came out. By then, he was standing close by talking to another man and I spoke to them as I passed by. As I got close to my car, I heard the town marshal say to the other fellow, If there is a Christian in Elizabeth, right there is one. That told me something that made me feel very good, because I remembered the words of my Lord: (Mat 5:16) “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Your character, how you conduct yourself before people, how you smile and speak to them means more than all the advertising you could ever do. Some folks are so busy telling everyone they are a Christian, they forget to conduct themselves like one. If we hide that light, how is a person out there in the world ever going to have anything to look at, anything that will remind them what the grace of God can do for a human soul? God has something for each and every one of us to do; and a lot will only be expected to portray a good image in the world. That may not sound like anything very Important, if you are chewing the bit wanting to do something for God, but it is of utmost importance for Christian people to conduct themselves in a way that will cause people to know you have something inside worth having. That is where letting your light shine comes into the picture.
WHAT CHRISTIANS ARE MOVING INTO
We have been talking a lot about unity for quite some time now, and there is a reason for it: God is going to have a body of people around this world, that know how to get along with each other, simply because He is teaching us how to look at His word. We will no longer come together disputing about what this, or that means, because we will all see the same thing. God’s word does not have a dozen different meanings, so that every Tom, Dick and Harry can have his own version of what God is moving us toward. He is putting together a body of people that can all see the scriptures the same way. The end results is, His word is going to produce in each of us an inner man that is in the likeness of Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son. It is not a matter of me saying, Lord, now you help me put on the right thing today. If you will just be honest with God and with yourself, you will follow a natural course of putting on the right thing every day. God’s word will do for you what you need to have done, if you will stop going to your Bible and just reading two or three verses and feeling like you have done your duty. You must read, study, meditate and pray a prayer of thanksgiving, rather than a prayer of God give me this and that. He desires, not only that we speak to Him in prayer, but that we allow Him the chance to speak to us. He does not have to speak to every one of us in an audible voice, in order for us to know His will for our lives: He is able to lead you through His word in a way that will speak to you just a distinctly as Him speaking audibly. When you purpose to keep on reading and studying, sooner or later every verse of scripture that God wants applicable to your life, will be made clear to you. He is going to say, Study this and let it be applied to your life. Much of the time, some people talk too much. In the world, they talk all the time. If you get in a group of twelve people, a certain one will be doing all the talking. It is a big job for people like that to control their mouth. Sometimes, up to a certain point, you enjoy what they are saying, but after you hear the same record, over and over, you begin to get somewhat irritated. I say to you, Putting on the Lord Jesus Christ is not how much you talk: Sometimes it is how much we can control our talk and listen. Can we have some respect for the others in the group and let them say something? That is a question we need to ask ourselves. Do you know what I am talking about? That is why I say, putting on the Lord Jesus Christ, has got to be something that deals with that inner person, how we conduct ourselves, how we have respect and present ourselves to our fellow man, and especially to the Christian body. Above everything else concerning our brothers and sisters in the Lord, We want to create an image of ourselves that is respected. It not only deals with our speech and how we look to others, but also the character we portray to them. When the world takes a look at you and cannot see a change, nothing different, there has to be something wrong; and it is not with them. You live in the world, yet you are not of the world. Sooner or later, as you and I put on the Lord Jesus Christ, when the worldly crowd sees us, they are going to begin to say, There is a man, or woman, that is different.
TRANSITION OF A NATION
When I look at America today, I hardly recognize it as being the nation I grew up in. That is why I am going to say a little bit about the change of America from sixty years ago. Yesterday in Washington D.C., (10/25/2003) there were hundreds and hundreds of demonstrators in the streets, demonstrating against our involvement in Iraq. People are speaking out against our president; and some of what they are saying is not very nice. As I listened to some of it I thought, The leaders of America today, are blind to reality. Either that, or they refuse to let themselves face up to it. Either way, we are heading for judgment. I have articles which have been sent to me in recent days, dealing with various things of interest. I am not a racist, so please do not ever say that I am, but I am old enough to know what America used to be like in the way they looked at racial people. America was originally populated by Europeans, Germans, Dutch, Russian, Italians and whoever else I may not have mentioned. When you went to the southwest, there were Spanish. Later the Orientals came to California. For years, this became a growing society of mixed races, but all were interested in becoming American citizens, and the nation was led by political leaders that wanted to model this nation in a way to show forth the freedom we enjoyed here. True Christianity grew in that society. No. It did not make everyone a born again Christian, but it did help mold the outward social appearance and set the tone for respect and moral decency. In some respects, a lot of people of the world, like maybe eighty years ago, dressed better than a lot of church going people do today. That is the truth; and it was all because of the influence Christendom had on Americans as a total society. Now it is quite obvious that something has happened to change all of that. I am thankful to God, that He dealt with me fifty some years ago and saved my wretched soul. Not only that, He also gave me a picture of what the true Christian life is to be like. I confess though, that I did not learn it all in one day. I have learned enough about it as time passed, that when God does give you an understanding of something that is plain and simple, you are able to see it as something simple; and you want to live like that, conducting yourself accordingly. You are not pretending to be something you are not: you just simply want to be what the pattern shows a Christian should be. That is why I have to say, You learn once and for all that there is a certain type of appearance (physically speaking, clothing and such like) that you want to look like. You will stay that way for the next hundred years, regardless of the styles of the worldly people, if you are allowed to live that long. Why? Because that is the image of yourself that God has given you. You do not have to ask, How do I look? Do you think I look holy enough? I am not going down the road of life asking people, Do you think I look alright? Do you think I look holy? What you see me as today, I will be that same way tomorrow. When you see tomorrow, I will be what I was ten years ago. I see no reason to change. There is nothing out there that I would change to be like. I am not this way to be contrary: I am what I am because I see it as the proper way to live my life. I am more concerned about the proper way to dress and conduct myself, than I am about trying to keep up with every new style that hits the streets. We must each one have our own personal convictions as to what is wrong or right to do and be; and every Christian should want to be sure that what they do, say and allow is not contrary to the word of God. We are each responsible before God; and He expects each of us to be examples. I am going to illustrate something to you: Just suppose I and some brother would go to a restaurant for a little lunch; and I watch him out of the corner of my eye, thinking, Is he going to drink coffee? Oh, that is a no no for me. There are some who do that. However God does not look upon us to condemn us for what we drink as Christians, as long as it is not alcoholic beverages or some other harmful substance. Likewise it is not what we eat that makes a difference: It is whether we have love, joy, peace and righteousness in the Holy Ghost. The apostle Paul dealt with all of that in the epistles he wrote. Some people have a very weak conscience: They will not eat this or that because they feel condemnation about it. Paul said, Accept him that is weak, and do not dispute about it. Let us look at Rom. 14:1-4. “Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations. (2) For one believeth that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eateth herbs. (3) Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him. (4) Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.” That should settle it for those who want to judge others all the time, but does it? No. There are always those who want everyone else to live by their set of rules. That has always been a source of friction in assemblies. When will people learn to put all of that into the hands of God? It comes down to this point, There are some things in this world that we have to deal with as individuals. God just puts them out there, and He is going to test all of us with them, because the real purpose is, He has to find in each of us a willingness to let Him have charge of leading us. That is why I say, Putting on the Lord Jesus Christ, is not following a set of manmade rules. Presenting yourselves in a prober way will not make you look like an odd ball walking down the street. Why? Because God, (when He is in control) has no purpose in making us look strange to others. In this world today, as soon as warm weather comes, women start stripping off their clothing. Do you think God is leading anyone to do that? Absolutely not. When you do see a woman going down the street wearing decent clothes, that does not necessarily mean she is a Christian. There are still some who do not yield to that spirit that is enticing people to conduct themselves like that. Do you understand what I mean? God is looking for stability in each of us.
I will take you back to some of the holiness images we have had through some recent years. We still have them today. You can go into an Amish community to see one of them. They have their own version of holiness: It goes back to 1450 even before Martin Luther’s hour. They will not have electric lights in their home, and no window blinds, because that is all a part of the world, they say. I must ask, What do electric lights have to do with holiness? Light, no matter whether it is electric or a candle, helps you get around in the dark. It has nothing at all to do with holiness. Nevertheless, that is the way they think. They have a certain appearance, the style of dress the women wear, is the way they wore them in 1450. You will never see an Amish woman wear anything red; it is always a dull blue, with black or gray, no loud colors. That is why I said last Sunday, I love to see the fall of the year come, God paints colors in the trees, flowers and whatever grows. You never hear anybody say, That is unholy. That is God’s scenery. As I say these things just remember this, When we think about putting on the Lord Jesus Christ, Please, let us be sure we do not think that just putting on something external to dress up the outside is all that is involved, when inside, we still harbor feelings that we will not let God change. In some cases, what is inside, is always trying to find fault with somebody else, because they try to measure themselves by the image of others they observe. We just simply cannot do that. We certainly are not to do that in such an hour as we are presently living in, a time when God, by His Spirit, is seeking to reach out and put together a people that are truly in unity. We first have to have unity in our revelation of the godhead, the true plan of salvation, what He has called us to be, and how He has called us and set us forth to be a shining light and testimony in the world of darkness about us. Here at the end especially, the Church is going to be a manifestation of the indwelling Christ, just as Christ Jesus on earth was the manifestation of the indwelling God, the great Creator and Father. That means whatever the godhead revelation is to one of us, it is going to be the same to all the others when that unity is complete. There cannot be a speck of difference. I realize we have a lot of people today, that have come down the pathway of life thinking, Well I certainly do not think we all have to believe exactly the same. I say to you who would say that, Where do you get such an idea? Certainly not from the Bible. If you think you did, I say, Give me a verse of scripture to vindicate it. When Christianity first started, it plainly tells you in the book of Acts, that they all continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. Where would anyone get the idea that the apostles of Christ did not all have the same revelation concerning the doctrine they stood for? What would anyone think (continued steadfastly) in the apostles’ doctrine meant, if it did not pertain to unity? They all adhered to it, whatever the apostles taught, and in breaking of bread, going from house to house. (They had no church houses back then, like we do now.) When God eventually allowed the devil come along and inspire someone to try to insert something into that teaching that was not even part of the gospel of salvation and true holiness, that is when the problems started. That is what Paul had to contend with all the time. Then after about three hundred years of Christianity, when the original apostles and those who had studied under them were all gone from the scene, the revelation of God’s word was just deteriorating, going down, down, down all the time, so coming to 325AD, when the godhead really came under attack, In the Nicene Council, it was determined (by carnal minded men) that God is represented in a trinity. That was the beginning of the groundwork of Roman Catholicism; and the world politicians and intellectual characters of the world today, still look at Catholicism as the original Church established by the apostles. I say emphatically, It is not the Church of the book of Acts and never has been! They say that the pope is the successor of Peter: That is a lie also, because Peter was a married man, and besides that, Peter never was in Rome. In fact, if Peter could come back today and look at some of these priests, he would kick them all out. Religion today, is based upon a few scriptures that people have reached into the word of God and taken out of it a number of verses which they have applied apart from the context of their original purpose; and then put together a religious philosophy. They call themselves Christians, but are they? Are they following the teaching of Jesus Christ and His apostles? Those who truly are, will all be believing the same thing in these last days. People just adopt a certain mode of holiness for their outward appearance, and it has not affected the inner man one bit whatsoever. That is why I say, A true, genuine, born again child of God, sooner or later, God is going to mold his inner being and make it conform to His will and purpose. His true children are not going to be freaks of nature. They are going to be genuine children of God inside and outside. When you see them one day, whether they are in overalls or a suit, you see a man with the same character, the same revelation, and the same understanding he had the day before. He may gain something else along the way, but you do not lose a true revelation. He can talk to you about the grace of God on Tuesday or Wednesday, just the same as he does on Sunday. That inward character is something you live every day, regardless of where you live. It goes with you when you go to bed, it gets up with you when you wake up. It is part of you, and you want it to be there: You are glad God has helped you put on the Lord Jesus Christ. You are glad that He has changed that old nature and made a new person of you. Jesus Christ is the pattern for all who desire to live a godly life. He is the image that was set before me, and I want my life to be molded after His very image. That does not make my facial appearance look like Jesus, but in character, in principal and all affairs of life I can conduct myself in a way that I treat my fellow man like he should be treated, and see my brothers and sisters in the Lord the way they deserve to be seen, and therefore treat them the way they should be treated. I want to live that kind of life, because I know those that live that kind of life are the only ones He is coming after. All over the world, there are people that have all kinds of external, holy appearances, but inside, many of them are void of the nature a true believer is expected to have. If you try to talk to some of the Pentecostal Church of God people about the coming of the Lord, they do not know one thing about the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. All they know is, I believe I am supposed to live a holy life. To them, a holy appearance is all that seems to matter. They are as ignorant as ignorant can be about the truth of God’s word itself. I want to be sure I have the knowledge of what truth is, and what it will do for me, because I want my life to measure up to a pure revelation of truth. No one has to persuade me to feel like that: I want it to be that way. I do not want to be guilty of just putting on a front for someone. I want people to see me on Friday the same way they see me on Sunday, except for the clothing worn to cover my body (a suit or work clothes). I am not going around looking into your wardrobe, trying to find out what you bought at Walmart when I saw you there the other day. It is none of my business. Do you understand what I mean? This is important for proper conduct and for proper respect of the rights of each other. I am not going to spend my time going around, picking up this, looking into that, finding out what makes you tick. One thing I know for sure, Sooner or later, if the grace of God has visited you and put His Spirit in you, He is going to cause that inner man to be exactly what He wants it to be, because that is part of the perfection He requires; and that is also what brings us into unity. It has to be more than just what is put on to cover the outside; (I cannot stress that enough.) it has got to be what is put on the inside, to dress the inner man.
CHECKING THE SCRIPTURES
Open your Bible to (2nd Peter, the 1st chapter and 3rd verse.) “According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue. Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, (That is what it is all about; having the indwelling of the divine nature of the living God, abiding in you.) having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. (Excess of this and that, living in a society, that if for some reason, (and I hope it does not come to that) our economy was to collapse like it did in 1929, I would feel sorry for a lot of people today, that would not know how to cope with primitive means of survival. They have lived for the last thirty five or forty years, when everything seemed to be come easy, go easy: We have all enjoyed and been thankful for modern day conveniences, but just suppose we had to do without them and go back to the way we lived seventy years ago. Would you know how to get by? I saw on the News last night, that one of the old steel towns in the east, now that the steel company has squandered their means and ready to sign bankruptcy, all the money that has been withheld from the employees’ paychecks to pay for health benefits and pensions for retirement, is lost. Here are thousands of people having meetings and asking, What are we going to do? People had very few of those benefits back in 1929 and on for a few years, if you know what I mean.) And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; (That is speaking to those who have the Spirit of Christ abiding in them. There is no more of this thinking, that you are saved yesterday, so you sit down and coast the rest of your life. That pertains to some who have that, (I will do it tomorrow) attitude, but never study the word of God and ask Him, Help me oh Lord to understand your word, that I may know how to walk with you through life. There has to be a growing process in you, whereby you little by little take on the knowledge of God. You only get that through studying the scriptures.) And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience, and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. (Love is translated charity in the King James Bible. When we are adding these virtues to our spiritual life, this is putting on the Lord Jesus Christ.) For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Now that rips this thing all to pieces, saved yesterday, back slide six months later and need to be saved again. He said, It makes you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful. That does not mean you will not have certain things thrown at you by the devil, that will cause you to become disappointed and feel bad, but none of those things can cause a true child of God to lose their salvation. When you have those days that you feel a little depressed, that is the devil’s business, to throw something at you that will affect you like that, but keep in mind, If you have the Spirit of God in you, He is not going to let you sit there for thirty years, rehearsing how hurt you are. Do you understand my point? How do I know that? Because, if you see to it that all these things are added to your experience, it makes you that you will neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. “But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure; for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall.” Meaning you will never return back to your lost state. You may allow Satan to side track you for a while, but you will never cease to be a child of God. Why do I say that? Because, if you have truly been born again, you are alive for eternity. If such a person allows Satan to get him or her into a position where the body of Christ will be affected by it, God can just take the breath of natural life out of you to halt it, but your born again inner man is alive for ever. Such a person will lose rewards, but will not be destroyed with the wicked. I speak that by the authority of what the apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthian Assembly concerning the man that was living with his father’s wife in an illicit relationship; an by the revelation that we have of God’s great salvation plan. (1 Cor 5:5) “To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” You can read the entire setting, but we will not read it all now. When you are alive in Christ, then there is spiritual food to take in, and that is how we grow. We grow in the knowledge of the Lord and we learn by the various things of life. In a lot of the church circles today, the real individual walk of the believer, has been pushed into the closet: Everything is done to fulfill a program. God is not interested in our manmade programs: He is interested in cultivating a dedicated and enlightened life in all of us.
PERFECTION BELONGS TO THE BODY OF CHRIST
I want to take a different approach to this subject for a few minutes now, so let us look into the 4th chapter of Ephesians, verses 12, 13 and 14. I realize this is a very familiar scripture to most of you, but I want us to look at these words very carefully. I want to say a few things in an effort to clear up a lot of things in the mind of some people: especially as to how other passages of scripture are to be read and applied. An awful lot of times, people that do not have an understanding of what those scriptures really apply to, will come with questions they throw at you one right after another, like, Well explain this, and what does this mean, and what does that mean? First I want to say this, Always remember, perfection is for the people of God, not for the so-called-church out here in the world of religion. I will say it again, Perfection belongs to the body of Christ. This has to become a reality to every one of us, so much so that we will look at it as an absolute fact. I am not going to read the 11th verse, because we have read it so many times you everyone should know it by heart. Therefore let us go directly to verses 12, 13 and 14. There has got to be a ministry in these last days that will accomplish what God has said right here, that we are moving toward. Keep in mind, This epistle was written by the apostle Paul, the man that wrote about half of the New Testament. He came out of his experience with the Lord with a revelation of what God is after in this age of grace to Gentiles. As he looked back through the years since Christianity started, he could see that from the day of Pentecost when the Church was born, right on through to the hour of his experience, that God had set in the spiritual body of believers all over the known world at that time, chosen men that were set aside to fulfill these types of ministries described in verse 11. He describes the purpose of it, that we will eventually become a mature people, that will truly bear the image and nature of Jesus Christ. The church was on the road to that, but as it passed out of the first age of time and the old saints were all dead, Satan had gone to work on the carnal mind of those who were left to propagate the faith; and gradually the revelation in the people began to deteriorate; and as it did they began to lose interest, and as the true revelation slipped away, naturally the picture those scriptures portrayed became very blurred. That is why I can say tonight, When we say that God sent a messenger in these last days, we know his purpose was to call this end time body of believers back to the faith and revelation of those apostles that walked with Jesus. I am not saying these things to make you think that I cannot preach something out of the Bible without referring to him, but every time I read Revelation 10:7, I know that the finished picture lays in the fact of how we heard what he preached, and how we allow God to apply it to our inner being. “For the perfecting (Of everybody? No. It is for the perfecting of the true saints of God.) of the saints, for the work of the ministry, (It is to give the real minister something to do. God will not allow men He has called to this purpose, to just sit back somewhere enjoying their retirement. No. Every one of them is going to be busy right up to the end of Gentile time when the rapture takes place.) for the edifying (uplifting, upbuilding, encouraging) of the body of Christ: Till we all (The term we all, does not apply to the denominational church world of religion all around us: It literally pertains to those that God has chosen and called to be a part of the living Bride of Christ. Neither is it pointing to those that are dead and gone on. God will deal with them on the merits of what they had in their lives during their lifetime, but the living element of the bride are definitely going to be dealt with to finally reach a place of spiritual perfection, living and walking in unity, seeing the scriptures the same and thinking alike on how they are to apply. It takes that to make the body really exemplify Christ in the manner God purposed it to, so, Till we all…) come in the unity of the faith, (The faith, not a faith, so here is the part I wanted to get to.) and of the knowledge of the Son of God, (A lot of people would think, Well we understand the godhead: Certainly we all see that alike. I say, Do we? There are verses of scripture in Paul’s writings, (especially in the King James Version, because the translators were Trinitarians) that if people do not somehow come to know the difference from some other source and know what Paul meant when he worded certain things the way they are, I have to say, Some of those verses of scriptures really cause one to ponder. It is just the way those Trinitarian translators slanted things toward their understanding, because of a trinity concept of God in their mind, that causes many problems. Therefore we who desire truth have got to come to an understanding, that when Paul wrote something in one epistle, he meant the same thing in another, regardless of how the translators worded it. It is our responsibility to pick out those instances in his epistles, and compare them to where he dogmatically and flatfootedly laid down exactly what he meant, and if we can hold it that way, we will always come out on top: We will not be confused, and we will know exactly, that Jesus the man was not God. He never was, because He was born and God was never born: He (God) is a sovereign Spirit that is from eternity to eternity the same. He always was and always will be. We will also know that Jesus Himself, never had part in creating anything, except in the mind of the great Creator Himself, that created all things with His only begotten Son in mind. That was because of His foreknowledge, knowing what his created man would do, that would cause him to need a Savior. We have got to separate the thought, God, what He is, what He did do, and then, who Jesus Christ really is and what He became in the plan of God, and how God was manifested in and through Him, not in a limited measure, but in the fullness of all His attributes, so that the works and words of His only begotten Son Jesus, expressed and demonstrated the mighty power that He (the Father) is. Therefore, wherever Jesus went, when He spoke under the inspiration, it was God the Father speaking; not the person of the man that sovereign Spirit abode in. There is a knowledge of the Son of God that absolutely caps out everything else, when we know definitely who He is, and what He became for you and me. That helps us to see ourself in other scriptures. We are all moving toward the point of perfection; perfection in what way?) unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.” When we look at the overall body of believers, in the mind of God there is an image of these believers that God is moving us toward. When we do reach that place of completeness and perfection, the mystical body of Christ is not going to be a mystery to us. However to the world it is all a mystery. It is how Christ is revealed, lived, and demonstrated in and through us. Therefore I want to say this, Through the years of time, people have had arguments about the godhead. They will specialize on one certain verse of scripture, trying to prove their point. When you read the Bible, the way certain things are worded, it would sound like Jesus Christ was the one that created all things, but a true revelation causes us to know He did not create anything. Take verse 9, in the 3rd chapter, and notice the wording. We well pick up verse 8, also, because it leads you into verse 9. This was written by the apostle Paul; a man that had a revelation beyond question. Eph. 3:8 “Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; (9) And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things (This verse should end right here, but the Trinitarian translators added the last three words.) by Jesus Christ.” I have checked in different other versions which were literally translated from ancient eastern manuscripts; and those last three words are not there. I am sure you can see how adding those three words to that verse can confuse a lot of people who try to study the Bible. When you know for sure that Jesus Christ is not the Creator, that verse raises a red flag. Hold on! Why does it say that? Jesus Christ never created anything! Let us read this again. I know what the Hebrew and Aramaic translations both say, but I am reading it straight from the King James Bible that I use. Paul was writing to the Ephesian believers, (Eph. 3:9) “And to make all men see what is the fellowship.” There is a joy in fellowshiping with people when we all believe the same thing, having the same understanding. There is nothing that can be any more troubling, than when somebody begins to have questions, or rather misgivings about something they read in the Bible. They can become so concrete in thinking like that, you might hear a brother, or a sister say, But I don’t see it that way. We put up with this kind of thing all the years we were in denominational groups, but now that we know better, we must move beyond that kind of attitude. We have had theologians poke this idea down our throats, Well you might see things a little different than Bro. So and So, but you do not necessarily have to agree on everything in order to fulfill God’s requirement to love one another. That is the way they paint the picture, but that is contrary to the revelation God has given His Bride Church here at the end time. Such attitudes as we have just described, is why you will not hear any denominational preacher today, preaching about unity. It is not in their revelation: They just accept the literal wording of whatever they are studying; and when you do that with some of the translations, you can really end up in confusion. If truth is not in your understanding, you have a hard time standing a lot of things, because certain people are able to throw some of these verses at you and say, Are you saying the Bible is wrong? If your own revelation is not solid, some of these things can shake you. What I must say to you is this, The Bible moves us toward one thought, because God’s purpose is perfected in that way. Therefore if we can first separate ourselves from the confusion about the godhead, and settle it in our own mind, the difference between Jesus the Son of God and the Father (which is Spirit without a physical form) we can always separate the person of the Son from the two thoughts that cause a problem. When I speak of two, I am not talking about two gods. However you do have to realize there are two intellects incorporated in the one human body. Jesus the Man had all the attributes of a man: The Father which descended upon Jesus the Son when John baptized Him that day, also had His own sovereign intellect, so when He took up His abode in the body of His Son Jesus, both were incorporated in the same vessel of human flesh. The Father, which is Spirit, joined with the spirit of His Son and they became ONE SPIRIT, but the Son still retained a separate identity as pertaining to the intellect. Otherwise He could not have properly said, (John 5:36) “But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me.” In another verse we hear Jesus say, (John 9:4) “I must work the works of Him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.” God Himself was not speaking these words: The man in whom the Father dwelt, was speaking. Notice these next two verses. (John 10:37) “If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. (38) But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in Him.” They became ONE, as pertaining to Spirit, but each intellect had a separate identity. When those same lips spoke the words of this next verse, that was not the Son doing the speaking, because the I AM that spoke to Moses was long before Jesus was born. Notice, (John 8:58) “Jesus said unto them, (The words came from His lips.)Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I AM.” When God spoke to Moses about sending him to deliver the children of Israel from bondage, Moses said to God, When I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is His name? what shall I say unto them? Here in this next verse is how God answered him. (Exodus 3:14) “And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and He said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.” Those ancient Jews knew God was not to be thought of in plural terms, as so many people came to think of Him going through time. Search the scriptures: He has always been ONE, never three.
MAN TEACHES, BUT REVELATION COMES ONLY
BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD
As I have said before, God is not a man: He has no human form. He never was a person, like a lot of religionists today think He is. They believe God is a person and they preach it that way. If you tell them He never was a person; and that He has no form nor shape. They will read where it says Moses saw Him. It does no good to tell them Moses only saw a manifestation God used to bring Moses in close relationship with Him, so He could convey something to Him. We who want to know the truth, realize as we go through the chronology of the Bible, that God, the eternal Creator, which also is our heavenly Father, the object of worship that identified Himself to Moses as the I AM, is a Sovereign Spirit. He and He alone is the Creator, even though He delegated certain tasks to His angelic helpers. He has continued to do that right on through time. Down through the ages, as the prophets wrote, here and there were prophecies made concerning a means of redemption that God would bring about one day. When that was actually fulfilled through the person of Jesus Christ His only begotten Son, God (the sovereign Spirit) was in that man who willingly gave His own life to redeem sinful mankind. That did not make Jesus the man, God, but God was in Him manifesting His own wonderful works through Him. An awful lot of people who read, or even study the Bible, fail to understand this wonderful truth, so they refer to Jesus the man as God. A genuine revelation comes only by the Spirit of God, regardless of how many times we may have heard something taught. Well as we get back to the rest of that verse in Ephesians, (3:9) which I will read from the beginning, please allow the Spirit of God to open your understanding to what we have just called to your attention. “And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ.” Remember now, that is how the translators of the trinity belief chose to record that verse, but when you go to the Hebrew bible, and the Aramaic, you will find it written like this, “To make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things.” That is what the Aramaic says, and that is what the Hebrew says. Neither one has the words (by Jesus Christ) ending that verse. Well those who do not have a revelation of the godhead are afraid to change what is written there in the King James Version, but those who do have that revelation, know for sure that Jesus Christ never created anything. Paul would say in one scripture (in 1st Corinthians) that as Christ is the head of man, man is the head of woman, but who does he say is the head of Christ? It is God Himself. Well now, did Paul know what he was talking about? Sure he did. We have to realize, Paul did not say one thing to the Corinthians, say something else to the Ephesians, and something else when he wrote to the Hebrews. Everything has absolutely got to have continuity. That is why it takes a ministry, a God called ministry, God taught, not theologically taught, but revelatory taught to get all of this straight. The end result of all scriptural teaching is to bring the true believers into unity, and that definitely means agreement. Ultimately we must see each scripture alike. Then we have knowledge. In at least four scriptures, we find that we are to have knowledge. We will read one of them. (Col 1:9) For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; (10) That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.” We are to be a wise people, knowing the purpose of God, what His great plan of redemption is to produce in the end. That is why I said this morning, God might have saved and dealt with you six months or six years ago, but just because He dealt with you and saved you then, do not get the idea that you can just sit down and stop reading the Bible. As you hunger for spirituality and study the scriptures, He is going to cause scriptures to come out of the book and become the bread of life to your soul. It is not a matter of how many scriptures you memorize: It is the understanding of the scripture that becomes precious to you. It becomes spiritual bread to our inner being. As we faithfully seek the Lord we are eventually on the road to becoming a perfect man. That means we are going to learn to put on the Lord Jesus Christ. I want God to help me every day, to be able to live this spiritual life in obedience to His word, that I can be a blessing to my brothers and sisters. I want to see my brothers and sisters, not from the standpoint of their individual faults: I want to see them in a way that I can help them, by saying something to help lift them up where they can see a little more of what I am talking about, and then pray that they are able to grasp it, apply it to their inner being and move forward in the grace of God. Together, we learn to appreciate each other, and not try to find faults with the flesh but encourage each other to walk faithful to Him who has called us to this wonderful salvation. The natural man that we are, always wants to find fault, look for something to complain about, but the spiritual man within, as he is renewed daily by feeding on the word of God, desires to rise above all of that. As for me, I just want to recognize the grace of God in my brothers and sisters. We have everyone looked at a lot of things through spiritual ignorance, but God is not going to leave us in a state of ignorance all our lives. Spiritual growth causes ignorance go away. It brings understanding. True understanding in the scriptures helps you grow, because we grow by grace in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ, and not by memorizing scriptures. Many scriptures in the Bible, the way they have been translated, and the way they have been used, present a very confused picture. Just like we said earlier, In one place it would rightfully make God as the Creator, but another scripture, the way it has been translated, would make it sound like Jesus is the Creator. That is why we have to get an understanding of all these things: We cannot go around changing all the Bibles that have ever been mistranslated in places: we just have to allow our revelation of God, His purpose and the instruments He used, to help us get past these discrepancies without allowing them to sidetrack us. In Ephesians 1:10, the apostle Paul gave us a good explanation of what God is leading us into. He wrote this, “That in the dispensation of the fulness of times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in Him.” You can read on both sides of that verse to get the entire picture, but verse 10, sums it all up. The apostle Paul wrote the epistle to the Ephesians, and when he wrote it, the Ephesian Church was a model Church for that hour. He meant exactly what He said. What he wrote there, plainly told the Ephesian Church that it was God Himself that had created all things. If that had been translated properly, it would settle a lot of disputes, but since it was not, wise Christians will know what Paul really said, and the others will keep on disputing about the creation. We could rightly say, He created all things FOR Jesus Christ, looking at it from the standpoint of redemption, but not by Jesus Christ. He created for Jesus Christ. Why did He do that? He did not create the stars for Him, but the things that do develop and take place here on this planet earth, that is exactly what it is talking about.
ALL THINGS MADE FOR JESUS
Open your Bible with me to Revelation 3. In the book of Revelation, Jesus, in His angelic form, is speaking to John. He is starting to speak to the Laodicean church age. This is the age of Laodicea that we are living in. Since this is that age, as we come to the climax of it, it is important that we learn what was said right here. (Verse 14) “And unto the angel (That would be the messenger to the age.) of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God.” Please notice how that makes it sound like Jesus existed before our time: Right? That is the way it has been presented down through time, but I want to explain to you, that this is not what these words imply. He is the beginning of the redemption. That is why all things were made for Him, not by Him. How many see the point? We can say this, The planet earth has been here for millions of years. Nobody will repudiate that, but ten million years ago Jesus Christ did not even exist, except in the mind of the Creator. He was only in the mind of Jehovah. When the time came that there was a condition on this earth that God wanted to bring forth and separate from His mind, from the sovereignty of His own thinking, a means of redeeming His creation, He created a cell of life in a virgin womb, that in process of time brought forth His only begotten Son, but He never used that Son to create anything: His purpose in Him, was to redeem His creation. Do you understand? We have to get every scripture in continuity with the overall body of scriptures. Why would the apostle Paul speak in the 15th chapter of 1st Corinthians, speaking of Christ, how that He must rule until He has put all enemies under His feet; and (1 Cor 15:24) “Then cometh the end, when He (Christ) shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when He shall have put down all rule and all authority and power,” if He was not still subject to the Father, why would He deliver the kingdom to Him? Jesus the Christ will rule and reign, in the Millennium, until He has put down all authority and power, because one of these days He is coming to get you and me. We are going to be changed to be like Him. We are going away with Him for just a little period, but we are coming back to rule and reign with Him. For what purpose? To undo the works of Satan on this planet. For one thousand years, righteousness is going to prevail over this planet, and the nations will learn to serve the Lord, all because they learned it through the reign of the Lord Jesus Christ as King of kings and Lord of lords. His part is in recreating, by redeeming creation itself. He is the beginning of the creation of God, because He is the beginning of the redemptive plan. That is why Paul could write in the Roman letter, that He is the firstborn among many brethren, because He is the beginning of the redeemed family of God, in that He is the means by how it was manifested. When He died for you and me, this was the means by how God had purposed to set in motion the total redemption of all that Satan had been allowed to divert from their innocent beginning in the Garden of Eden. That was the purpose for which Jesus was brought into the world, to redeem out of sin and death, all of this and lift us back up into a proper relationship to God. He is recreating us. Like I said this morning, You were only born into this world, physically, one time. You will never again be born again into the family of God, because that only happens one time. The physical birth that brought you into existence on this planet was by the law of reproduction, which was ordained by God Himself. Then, when you are born again into the family of God, that is a divine act ordained by God Himself, but manifested through the Lord Jesus Christ. Accepting His shed blood on the cross of Calvary as the entire payment for your lost condition is what lifts you up out of that fallen state that was brought on this planet by Satan and places you in fellowship with God. He was born to become an example, and to bear our sins and reproaches. He suffered and died, paying the price of our redemption, that we could be bought back to God, because we who are children of God were foreknown of Him before the foundation of the world. It is not the Son redeeming us, it is God that devised the plan, but it was the willingness of the Son to take our sins upon Himself and die in our place that brought the perfect plan to fruition. As He was willing to die for you and me, the Father then raised Him from the dead, so the Bible says He is the firstborn from the dead. He being the firstborn among many brethren, lets us know God brought Him into existence to be the Redeemer, as far as paying the price for our redemption, but our redemption was designed by the Creator Himself. Not to literally recreate us, but to make us what the Bible calls a new creature in the sense of renewing us, giving us a spiritual birth. (2 Cor 5:17) “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” That is what these verses of scripture are talking about, being made new in Christ Jesus.
REDEMPTION IN THE FINAL STAGES
We have to keep everything in continuity with the revelation Paul had. I hope you understand. As we use 1st Corinthians 15, speaking of when the Lord Jesus Christ does come and call for the dead out of the graves, that will reach back and get everything from the apostolic age right on down to the very hour of His return. We that are still alive at that time shall be changed. He is not creating us: He is recreating us. It is a matter of redeeming us. He changes us into His image, into His likeness. That is why we have to be changed first by the inner man being born of the Spirit and becoming obedient to the leading of that Spirit. Then when He changes this old fleshly man, that completes the process of putting on the Lord Jesus Christ. We are then ready to be taken to the marriage supper. Later, we are going to come back with Him, all riding white horses. For what purpose? To assist Him in the redeeming of this planet earth. That is why the apostle Paul could say, For He must rule and reign until He has put down all authority and power. For the knowledge of the Lord shall go forth from Jerusalem and it will fill all the earth. The knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth. What for? It is His way of redeeming it. Creation is being redeemed back to a righteous state, as it was in Adam’s beginning. He rules and reigns until He has put down all authority and power. When He has subdued all enemies, the last being death, then He has rid this planet earth from all the elements of Satan’s six thousand year rule. That is why at the end of the seventh Millennium, He who has reigned as King of kings, is going to sit as a Sovereign judge, still endued with all the attributes of He that indwells Him, and the great white throne judgment will take place. That is when death and hell give up the dead. They will all have to stand in a resurrected state before Him, to be judged, which is to determine their final state of punishment for all their deeds upon earth. When they are cast alive into the lake of fire, what does that do? That takes out of the earth all traces of sin and death that had been present for six thousand, even seven thousand years. It also destroys the existence of what hell is now used for. That is why I can say, There is no such thing as an eternal hell. Denominational religionists look at hell as a place that remains forever and ever, throughout all eternity, but that cannot be right. Right now, hell is a temporary place for the imprisonment of the doomed, but when the time comes that death and hell give up the dead to stand before a final judgment, there is no more need for the place now called hell. What hell is right now, becomes the lake of fire later, because that is where the wicked dead are deposited after their final judgment, to be literally destroyed. Now saints, as we look at all these things in that respect, I hope we can everyone see that Jesus is the beginning of the new creation. That is what God sent Him here to accomplish in His overall plan of redemption. When there is no more hell, and when the earth has no more graves, then all the scars that sin and evil has been responsible for in the other ages has been abolished by atonement. Jesus Himself being the beginning of the re-creation of God, then Paul’s revelation, which we must keep consistent, concludes with this statement, Then shall the kingdom, meaning the earth and all the righteous people, be turned back over to God Himself, that God may be all in all. I have my heart set on being a part of that, and there is no reason why we who have followed the Lord in truth and righteousness should not be. We do have to empty our mind of those confused pictures denominational systems of religion has crammed into us. That is why from now on until the rapture takes place, not only will God be working on our inner being, He will help us shape up on our outward appearance. We have to remain in the world, but we do not need to look like what it produces in unbelievers. Having said that, I also ask God to help me see His people as I should see them. I want to be able see you as my brothers and sisters. It is going to be my job to show unto you the grace, the wisdom, the love, and the patience to know how to say things and to lift you up and help you, that we all might see the same picture together. I realize some will bear thirty fold, so I have to have enough spiritual perception to recognize a thirty fold Christian and conduct myself in a proper way. I cannot go down the road of life saying, Well, that is just a thirty fold Christian, I have no time to spend with him, or her, as the case may be. We must get all these flesh pictures out of our mind, and endeavor to view each other as a person that God, in His love and mercy, is bringing into the likeness of Jesus. That lets us know, The ministry of this hour of time definitely has a job ahead. That job is being able to say things to encourage, to edify, to get you looking ahead, and to help you and me see ourselves in the scriptures. When I read in Ephesians 3, (who created all things by Jesus Christ), when it should have said, for Jesus Christ, it lets me see why there is so much confusion in the ranks of professed Christianity. Then when you hear someone trying to argue that the earth is only six thousand years old, and another proclaiming that it has to be millions of years old, that just adds to the confusion. However, we who believe in the predestinated plan of God, just listen and say, Even if this earth has been here fifty million years or more, so what? God was still the creator of it, regardless of how long ago. I will say this also, Once He set creation in motion, He did not think up new designs as time went on: He already had a fixed picture in His mind from before He started creating anything. I have to believe there was a time, (if we can express it like that) when God existed alone, a time when there were no angelic beings or anything. Let us ask ourselves the question, Why do Trinitarians always want to translate certain words in a way that makes God three persons? He never was and never will be three persons. Well of course we know why: It is because they look at Genesis 1:26, and get that picture, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” It is because they have no revelation of the godhead; or they would know He was speaking to His angelic helpers. He was definitely not speaking to two other persons in the godhead. He was speaking to His angelic beings, which are also spirit beings. Angels are ministering spirits. They are not just ministering spirits for the heirs of salvation, as it says in Hebrews 1:14, but there are those also that are ministering spirits within the laws of God’s domain. He designates duties that they carry out, as the scriptures point out in many places. When we can see that, we have to begin to realize, angels are not being tested in this period of time when man is being tested: they were tested long, long ago, in the prehistoric age. That is why I say, Whatever went on in that prehistoric hour, that is when some angelic beings which had first been created righteous, eventually, as time went on and they had opportunity to decide what they would do with the power and authority invested in them, many joined Lucifer in disobeying God and became evil spirits. We just have to conclude that back then, is when they were tested and cast down from their righteous state, after failing God. That is when Lucifer fell from his exalted position. For anyone to say all of that took place and God did not know a thing about it, is just plain foolishness: He sure did know. The prophet Isaiah, came along hundreds of years later and wrote about how Lucifer fell. Isaiah the 14th chapter. When you read the 28th chapter of Ezekiel, that also lets us know what happened, but it was all in the foreknowledge of God: He knew what would happen. If God could cause a prophet to look ahead and tell what is to be, He could also let a prophet see what took place back in prehistoric times. How else could they have written those things, except by inspiration of the sovereign One? That is the way we have to see these scriptures. When we can see it in that light, it helps clear up certain points of misunderstanding. When our understanding becomes the same, we have nothing left to argue and debate about. We no longer have the attitude, Well you say whatever you want to say, and I will say what I want to. God is delivering us out of this kind of nonsense. That is a result of total human ignorance, when we take such an attitude. The scriptures were not written like that, so everyone could just choose what they want and discard the rest. As we get closer and closer to God’s finished purpose, we are going to have a perfect picture of the godhead, how He materialized and brought forth one day in the person of His Son, a living image, and a perfect reflection of all the divine attributes of His own self. For three and one half years those attributes were demonstrated through the life of His only begotten Son. The revelation of things that Jesus spoke through His lips is how the Spirit of the Creator within Him, moved Him to speak. Jesus never spoke anything pertaining to the plan and purpose of His Father apart from that inspiration. He informed every one of His disciples, The words that I speak to you, they are not mine, they are His that sent me. I have to say, If we are living in a day and hour that God is going to have a people who will be the product of the fulfillment of His word, we are going to have to get to the place where we say, Lord, you take my mind and turn it into a spiritual mind. Help me see the truth so we can all see it the same. When we begin to look at the same picture with the same understanding, then the devil cannot sit on our shoulders and fill our minds with all kinds of divisions. As we grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord, He is going to see to it that we grow in character, and in the spiritual image and likeness of Jesus. When we read Paul’s revelation here in Ephesians and in Colossians, Paul speaks of how Christ was the image of God. When he said that, we have to realize, Paul was not referring to Jesus because of His physical shape, nor His physical stature. He was referring to Jesus because of the character and spiritual image He portrayed before the human race, and especially the Jews. That is why many Jews only referred to Him as Jesus of Nazareth, the carpenter’s son. They never saw anything else. But others came along, when they saw what He did, they heard what He said, then when Jesus asked the disciples one day, Who do you say that I am? Peter said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. Peter did not recognize that because of the physical stature, he saw something demonstrated that defied the theologians and the priests in all their traditions of that hour. He saw the inner character. That is exactly what we each have to become in character. We cannot be one thing one day and six months later we have changed and reflecting something else. That is why I have said, I am what I am by the grace and mercy of God. I am thankful to God, that I know things now, that I did not know forty years ago. I will say this though, My purpose to live for God, has never changed. I am going to dress myself the next hundred years, if God would let me live that long, the same as I do now. (Just an illustration of continuity.) Since God saved me by His grace, and then opened His word to me, I am able to see in this Bible, that there is an unchanging image for the man and woman that wants to really live a dedicated life. It does not make you a freak: It makes you a person that when people see you one day, and then sees you another day, even one year later, ten years later, twenty or thirty years later, you are still the same. I say, That is how Jesus was. God wants the man called Jesus, to have that same kind of impression in our lives as He had in His. As such a life is cultivated, after a while we begin to become a people that God is pleased to work through. You will demonstrate His attributes. As we become more and more in unity, you are going to see the gifts of the Spirit begin to fall in proper place. Not everyone will speak in tongues. Not everyone is going to prophesy, but sooner or later, every one is going to have some kind of manifestation.
For a little over a year I have been dealing with a situation. Some of you sitting here, you wanted to question me. I look at you with all honesty and say, I will never touch a man’s life until I know what I am dealing with. I say that now, and I will still say that ten years from now. I will never touch a man’s life until I know what I am talking about. God has taught me better than that. I am not going to jump to conclusions. Well Bro. Jackson, do you believe everything you hear? No. I have asked God to put a filter in my mind. Sooner or later, if you look at a situation long enough, you will begin to see some indicators that will give you direction. They may be small, but you will see this a little bit and that a little bit until it begins to form a picture. That is why I say, This is a day when the preacher has got to be perfected the same as the rest of the people of God. It is not until the preacher is in a process of perfection, that we can expect the people to be perfected. When God deals with that preacher, you are still not going to see a man with halos over his head. The purpose of God in it, is that you can see some character demonstrated in that life. He is not going to be a gossip. He will deal with the situation as God begins to reveal the root cause. You never do it to destroy the soul of a person, because perfection does not destroy people: It enables people to begin to understand why they are here. You will see what the grace of God did for you. We have got to grow in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, because that knowledge tells us how to live, what to look toward, and how to look at our brothers and sisters to see Christ in them. It all goes right back to our understanding of the godhead. That is why Paul wrote this in Ephesians like he did. Until we all come into the knowledge of the Son of God. We know who He was. The man was not God, but the man was the Son of God. Though there was a prehistoric hour, all that Jesus was back then, was a thought in the mind of God. That thought was laying there in the mind of the Creator, long before there was ever a man on earth that needed a Redeemer. When dinosaurs roamed this planet, the life of Jesus was just a future plan in the mind of the Creator. God knew, that one day that prehistoric world would reach its end. If God knew everything in our dispensation, do not tell me He did not know everything about that era also. He knew exactly what Lucifer would do, when the angels were tested. That is why Jude, Peter, and all of them could come along centuries later and speak about the angels that kept not their first estate. They were looking back. I have to say, It is a shame that the religious world today has to preach what they do and try to convince people that God made the world in six days of twenty four hours. The apostles did not believe anything like that. It is just the way denominational ignorance has stopped the flow of understanding (revelation). God is not going to leave His little body of bride people in ignorance. We are all going to get a clear picture. It is not something to brag or boast about, just something to praise God for. I am very thankful I know who my Redeemer is. I know that the God of the Old Testament, the God of the prehistoric world, was in Him, working through Him, because it was not the Son that did the choosing: It was the Father in Him that did the choosing, but the Son was the instrument the Father worked through. Since God is redeeming and begetting a family back to Himself, it is all done through His plan of redemption. That is why Jesus is the beginning of the new creation of God, not the old creation. That is the only way you can understand it and preach it without getting yourself in a mess. You cannot make Him one thing in one scripture, jump to another scripture and make Him something else. That only breeds confusion. We must understand, that God was in Christ reconciling lost man back to Himself. That is why Jesus could come along and say, He that has seen me has seen the Father. What did He mean? When Jesus healed the sick, raised the dead, stilled the storms, that was not the person of the man doing that, it was God in Him, that was speaking the word of authority. Then you hear the same man say, It is not I that doeth these works. When He was on the ship and spoke, looking right into the face of that storm He said, Peace, be still. The wind just immediately died down. The disciples that were sitting there said, Never a man spoke like this. The words came out of the mouth of the man Jesus, but that was the Father’s words. When that was exercised, it opened spiritual eyes and God was seen in action. Those who only saw Jesus with natural eyes, just saw a man of such and such a stature, and were just like all the rest of those Jews that caused Him to be crucified. They said, He is called Jesus, the carpenter’s son. I will say, If you have a revelational eye, you will see Him: He is the Son of God, but God is in Him, reconciling, (or recreating) begetting us back to Himself, creating within us a new nature, a new future, and a new hope. When the time comes, and our bodies are changed, and then we return to earth, we are going to reign with King Jesus for a thousand years. When that last enemy is dead, death and hell is swallowed up in victory, redemption is finalized. In what shape does that leave the earth? It is clean. How did it get clean? Did He come across it will a bull dozer? No. The Son of God, invested with the power and authority of the omnipotent God, will rule and reign for a thousand years cleansing the earth of sin and corruption by a rule of righteousness. He will defeat all the powers of Satan that has caused the pollution. In His rule, He will remove from the crust of the earth the very affects of sin, all of which has been accumulating for six thousand years. By the redemptive act of God through the person of His Son, He (the Father) has begotten to Himself a family of sons and daughters which His loving heart desired from the beginning, Jesus Christ the firstborn, the first fruits from among the dead, stands at the head of that righteous family. Adam was the beginning of the natural family, the second Adam (Jesus) is the beginning of the redeemed family, because it was accomplished through Him. I have tried to say these things in a way to make them as simple and plain as possible. Therefore after hearing all of this, you certainly ought to realize you cannot take one verse of scripture and pit it against the entire body of other scriptures that open our understanding. That is what denominationalism has done through the centuries of time. It only leaves ignorance, doubt, misunderstanding, frustration, confusion and hopelessness; and people go home from their meetings defeated, thinking, Well I simply do not know what to believe. God does not want us to continue through life that way: He wants us to have a clear understanding of His Word, His plan and purpose. That is why we need to understand that as Jesus Christ the King rules for a thousand years, the whole world, mortal people from all the nations are going to come to Jerusalem to worship God the Creator that is in Him. They will come to worship the King of all kings. What are they doing it for? They are worshiping God that has been revealed in and through Him. That will go on for the entire thousand years. Then as that kingdom comes to a close, and Satan is loosed for a little while to tempt those mortals that have been born during that time, Please remember, that though He is loosed to tempt, He is never allowed to defile the earth any more. Of those mortal subjects that have been born through that Millennium, many will fall victim to Satan’s temptation, but God calls a halt to his plan before it ever materializes: He rains down fire from heaven and consumes the entire conglomeration that Satan has deceived. We will bring this to a close by reading a few verses from Revelation 20, which will let everyone see how this all ends. Rev 20:7 “And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. (You can see here, that a great multitude are deceived, because that inherited nature is still present in all mortals.) And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. And I saw a great white throne, and Him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” I believe those verses finish this story without me saying much more. At the great white throne judgment, all the wicked and ungodly of all ages will have final judgment pronounced upon them. That is when the wicked dead are all resurrected. It is the power invested in Jesus that God uses and expresses to bring about this redemptive act. When the last enemy, which is death itself is destroyed, redemption is complete, the new creation is all that is left on the planet. God’s righteous family is complete. The earth is new, because of cleansing; and not because God created another. He did not make a new planet: He just redeemed the old planet. He has cleansed it from all the effects of sin. From there, time goes off into the eighth day. That is a day without end, ages, ages, ages, worlds without end, nothing but joy, peace and righteousness. That is why I said, Jesus Christ then becomes your elder brother. He is still your Savior, He is still the firstborn, He is still the first fruits, you and I are just the ones that followed suit, because all of that is a predestinated plan of God from before the foundation of the world. Amen