I AM THE RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE
Chicago, Illinois, USA
… it goes to foreign nations. And I always try to come and speak a little to the people. I… Brother Baxter and them takes up the offering. And all the money in our campaigns has been a very strange thing. I… So happy to…?… that I can say this here, but the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it hasn’t been a meal ticket for me. If I thought that way about it, and that’s the only alternative I had, I’d go back home, go back and get me a—my job back as a state game warden of Indiana, and go to work.
I preached twelve years back at Tabernacle at Jeffersonville without one penny’s salary, offerings, or anything. I worked, and it was it. If it was somewhere now that I could get… Now, this seems very strange. But if I knew that while I was in Chicago, if I could get a job… Nobody’d hire me except maybe out here with a pick and shovel on the street. I’d do what I have to do to take care of myself. Now, that’s not just to be humble; that’s from my heart. See? And I could relax myself more. But, see? But then in these kind of meetings, you can’t do that, you got to stay constantly with God, to know just what’s going to be in the next meeting.
For remember me… In the larger services, where we set together, there’s critics; there’s everything. Satan’s waiting for one false move, then of a… Everything that he can just pin right on that. See? So that’s… I must be careful.
Just think, friends, in the meetings that passed, what if it wouldn’t have been just exactly truth. Look what’d taken place.
Many of you has read my book back there called “Man Sent From God.” You seen the testimonies and so forth. What would happened if some those close places where critics, maniacs, and everything run right to the platform and say, “Right this hour, I’ll slay you. I’ll take, mash every bone in your body.” Well-able to do it… Ministers shrank and run from it. Stand there and see Almighty God strike their life, and that person fall to the floor…?…
Stand and see them say, “It’s psychology; you’re reading the people’s mind.” Agents of different things, and most of the time, preachers run to the platform, say, “Now, that’s psychology. You’re only reading the people’s mind.” But you see power of Almighty God move come down and move that thing back (See?), where it…
Sweden, Finland, Africa, wherever you go, the opposition’s always there: Satan. That’s the reason many people… You don’t know how I’d like to come and visit with many of you. I long to do that, but in this case… Now, I can’t compare my life and tell you to live the way I do. See? I have to live the way He wants me to.
Now, I either can be the servant of man or the servant of God. In order to be the servant of God, I must abstain. No matter how much I love you, I must abstain from people. I’m not an isolationist. You don’t know my heart, how I love people. But I have to stay away from people in order to stay with God. No matter who the person is, even my own people… My own brother drove up here the other day, my wife setting in with them. By the way my brother…?… And my brother in flesh. Said, “You haven’t been in my house for years.” My mother cried and said. “Billy, why don’t you visit them?” But I… That’s my mother, but I love her. But the reasons…
There’s a lady setting in this…?… this afternoon, which is my wife. I promised God and her that all my affective love would go to her, for that part as a woman. I promised that.
Now, if I go down the street and a—a young lady comes along and says, “Are you, Brother Branham?” “Yes, sir.” “Why, I love you.” Well, the first place, if I thought I loved—had love for the girl it would be false. My first duty is the love that I pledged to my wife. I must think of that first. That’s first. Then I… No matter how much I think here, I know it can’t be right, because this has to be right first. If it’s contrary to that, I must take this first. That’s what I promised God. And that’s the way it is with truth, and the Gospel, and Christ, and people. I love people with all my heart, but my first love is to Christ. My first duty is to Him. Therefore, I must serve Him. You understand, don’t you?
And these missionary offerings, I’ve tried to spend the money… Never took a offering in my life, never took a offering in my life.
I remember one time. I tell this sometimes. My wife gets after me, so she just might as well ready to get after me again today, ’cause here it is.
Right after we’d been married about two years. You know, the depression times was hard. I… We just couldn’t make ends meet. Do you ever get that place? We all have. I believe you have. And I was a getting about, oh, about sixteen, eighteen dollars a week, and children to take care of and everything, I thought, “My, what will I do?” So I said, “You know what? I’m going to take an offering tonight.”
She said, “Well, I’m going over to watch you do that.” I’d never taken one, but she said…
When we built the little church, right in the time, 1932, and I borrowed the money to put it up, and I never took an offering one time. A little box on the back of the church said, “Insomuch As Ye Have Done Unto To The Least Of These My Little Ones, You’ve Done It To Me.” I never told the people that was there, but when my payments come due it was there. That’s the life of faith. You trust God for it. See, just what I did.
And then, I remember that night I went over, and I was going to take an offering. Now, not cause the people wouldn’t give to me. Sure, they’d die for me. But they… If it was necessary, they would—they would do that. But I didn’t want it. I was young and worked, had a job. Rest them was working, why not I? So didn’t interfere with me much in my ministry, so I went ahead.
But I remember that night, I said to the… “Well, friends,” I said, “I kinda hate to say this, but I—I kinda hit a snag. I—I—I—I… We’ll take up an offering.” I said, “Brother Wiseheart, would you get my hat?” They didn’t have any collection plates. “Will you take my hat?”
Said, “Yes, sir, Billy.” And he looked up at me kinda strange, went over and got my hat. I looked down, there’s a little lady by the name of Weber setting right close…?… A little old mother had…?… little checkered aprons on, the pocket on the inside of the aprons (You know?), here on the side. You know what I’m talking about, some of you mothers. So I seen her reach down pull this little apron back and get out one of these little pocketbooks that snaps on the top. You know? She undone this little pocketbook and begin to fumble around with them nickels in there. My, I couldn’t take that. That would’ve haunted me the rest of my life, I took that poor old thing’s money. I looked at her, and great big lumps swelled up in my throat. And I said, “Now, friends, I was just trying your faith. I didn’t mean that.” I said…?… My wife setting there looking to see how I was getting along. You know?
There’s an old man. He’s usually at every one of these meetings around here. I don’t know whether he’s here or not. His name is John Ryan. Not the John Rhyn that he was blind. It’s another John Ryan. You’d think he belonged to the House of David; he wears long hair and long beard. And he was at the Hammond meeting and the Zion meetings. He may be here somewhere for all I know.
He come down to see me. So he rode a bicycle down. Bicycle probably cost him three dollars. It was a—it was a real… You know? And here he come down with that long hair blowing, the beard on one side, coming down to see me. Well, I think it backslid while he was down there.
Now, that’s a mouthful for a Baptist to say, isn’t it? Backslid. But he… The bicycle did anyhow. And he stood up and said, “Brother Bill, you can just have that thing.” And he hitchhiked back.
So he give me the bicycle. And after I went home that night, the wife said, “I thought you was going to take up that offering?”
Now, Monday, I thought, “What am I going to do now?” I went and got me a can of paint for about fifteen cents, and I doctored up the old bicycle and painted it, and sold it for ten dollars. Didn’t have to have—have the offering after all. So… Now, that…
But just feelings that I couldn’t take… I knowed that poor little old woman was going to drop in them pennies and things, maybe she’s been saving that for something else. And me a young man and her sixty-five years old, or something, I couldn’t do that.
So we try to do the same way. Our services is not to bum people for money. If ever one time I ever hear of one of my managers begging for money, that’s the end of the manager. We don’t have no more managers like that. ’Cause when God don’t supply my needs out here, He wants me to go home. And so we—and wait for another vision.
So I’m—I—I’m not very good at that Brother Boze, I’m… I see I’m—I’m probably too close to it. I remember the first one of those that I ever tried to talk through, I was scared to death. I never seen nothing like that. I was at a Pentecostal meeting, and they had just invited me to the platform. I didn’t know how close, and I was scared of the thing. And I was looking at it, and getting back, and—and it was over here around Mishawaka. [Brother Boze speaks—Ed.] Yes. All right.
Now, [Brother Branham speaks to someone—Ed.] Yes, sir. It probably is, ’cause I sure don’t know nothing about it. I’m—I’m sure of that. All—all right.
Say, you know, money plays a big part, after all, doesn’t it, brother? I was sure to get it done now. That’s fine. Thank you, brother. That’s very nice.
Now, this afternoon while we’re—are here… Brother Baxter said, “Well now, Brother Branham, for a missionary…” Now, I couldn’t… I could…?… If it had to come time for me to take up an offering for the Lord, I could do it. But I couldn’t do it for myself.
But here not long ago, there was a great sum of money (Many of you heard about it.) was given to me, and I refused to look at it. I could have made all of you happy, just pick through…?… now among us… A million five hundred thousand dollars. See? I even refused to look at it. See? They packed an article of it in the paper. But I—I didn’t want it. It isn’t money. A man that gets his mind on money, popularity, and things like that, he’s surely on the outside.
There’s three things I’ve noticed in reading history, that wrecks a minister’s life from the start: one of them is money, the love of it. The next is popularity. When he thinks he’s something, when he’s nothing anyhow. And the next is women. That’s right.
Man takes money, women, popularity. That’s been the three major things that God’s had trouble with His children. Many of the other things that goes along with it too. But the main thing is when God begins to bless a brother and give him something a little more than—or something another to help the people, then the man begins to think, “See who I am?” Right then he’s on his road down.
You want me to tell you how to get up? Get down. The way up is go down. He that humbles himself, God will exalt. Is that right? He that exalts himself will be made abased.
Now, to speak in the afternoon like this… I—I am not a—a preacher. When I come behind Brother Baxter, and Starr, and Brother Boze, these other ministers setting here, who are men who are educated, and my little grammar school education don’t go very far; I tell you.
At Fort Wayne meeting, I never will forget it. I was out there just a preaching away (You know?), and I come back behind the curtains after the service was go to rest up; I was too weak to walk back. And there was a fine scholar walked up to me, said, “Brother Branham”, said, “your grammar’s terrible.”
I said, “Yes, sir. I know that.” I said, “I just had a seventh grade education. My father had died and I had to take care of ten…”
“Oh, that’s no excuse.” He said, “My,” said, “the mistakes that you made tonight.” Said, “You should—you should know better grammar than that. The crowd that you’re speaking for,” said, “why, it’s a disgrace.”
I guess he was part of Mr. Webster you know, so I said, “Well, sir,” I said, “I know that’s right.” I said, “But…”
He said, “Well, you could take a—a correspondence course.”
I said, “Yes, sir. But you see other times,” I said, “I was… I had to take care of a big family and everything, and now to make ends meet,” and I said, “And now,” I said, “the Lord’s work is so—keeps me so busy,” I said, “I don’t have time to—to take it.”
He said, “Oh, that’s no excuse.” He said, “I heard you tonight out there saying, ‘All to you people that come by this polepit tonight, believing will get healed.’”
I said, “Yes, sir. What was wrong with that?” I don’t know the difference.
And he said, “Why, you should not say, ‘polepit’”; said, “you should say ‘pulpit.’” He said, “Those people would appreciate you more if you said ‘pulpit.’”
But he pinched me a little too hard. You know? So I put my hand over on his shoulder; I said, “Brother, I don’t mean to hurt your feelings (See?), but them people out there don’t care whether I say, ‘polepit’ or ‘pulpit.’ They want me to preach the Gospel and produce what I’m talking about. They see Jesus Christ; that’s all they care about.” That’s right…?… Well now, I… That’s the reason I don’t say I’m a minister or a preacher.
When I was a little boy, my father was a—a rider, and he used to follow rodeos and so forth, and ride fancy riding. He was a good shot with pistols, and I used to see him take out a row of cans, just take those little bitty cans, like that, and throw them out, like that, and take two guns and just keep rolling that can. Why, I couldn’t hit a lard can like that with a rifle, so it… See what a difference it was. And a rider, why, he could just… I’ve seen him ride till the blood would fly out of his nose and ears. And I thought, “Well, my, that’s… He…”
When I got to be a good sized boy, I said, “I’m going to be like my dad.” So, we had an old plow horse there. I just lived in Indiana most of life. We had an old plow horse there; it was about fourteen years old. And plow with the old thing all day and we had an old watering trough cut out of a—a log. Did you ever see one of them, when you cut the old log? Well, look at the country folks here, would you? My, that’s fine. Well, I’ll take off my—my coat and my tie now.
So that—our old watering trough, down where they have to pump the water. You know? One of the kids would have to go to pumping a half hour almost before the time was up to get enough water to water the horse.
So we’d get behind the barn, so dad couldn’t see us. And I’d slip in and get his saddle (You know?) and throw it across the old horse after we watered it, pull the harness off, the gear. And then I’d reach, get me a handful of cockleburs, and stick them under the saddle (You know?), and pull down the girth. Climb up in the middle of this old horse with this straw hat. You know? And the poor old horse, so old and stiff and tired, he couldn’t get his feet of the ground. He’d just bawl. And when he’d stand there and bawl. And I’d take my hat in my hand, and I’d holler and scream, and my brothers all setting around on fence posts, all of them setting there. I was a cowboy. My, I really could ride. That poor old horse, why, he was like riding a rocking horse out here, wouldn’t be as bad.
So when I got to be about eighteen, I thought, “Well, I’m old enough now. I’m going out west to be a cowboy.” Probably seen too many movies. And so I’d went out west. And I landed in Arizona just at the time of a rodeo. Well, I went down; I had a little money, and I’d go buy a pair of chaps. So they had to find a nice big pair. You know? And I put it on me like that. Just a lad anyhow (You know?), there was about eighteen inches of leather hanging out on the ground, when I got. Looked like one of these little bantam chickens (You know?) with them feathers down behind me, like that. I thought, “Well, they’re too big here in Arizona for us Kentuckians.”
So I—I got me a pair of Levis and went out, climbed up around the corral fence, where they was riding the horses at the rodeo. And I heard them say, “Now, the next is going to be the Kansas Outlaw. He’s going be rode by So-and-so, and carry on like that, the caller went by. I looked along side of that fence there at all of these disfigured cowboys (You know?), that setting up there, weather-beaten. You know? Looked all along them, I thought, “That’s where I belong up there with them guys.” So I climbs down and gets up there and sets on this corral fence (You know?) with just Levis on, a hat, both ears hanging down, too big for me. So only cost about a dollar ninety-five cents, so it wasn’t very much. You know? Well, I thought I was a real cowman, ’cause I’d rode that old plow horse (You know?), and I thought, “I can do that too.” I’d never seen a real outlaw rode. You know?
So after a while they was running this horse right into the chute, like that, the bull pen. And when it come out, this fellow was standing there, catch-as-can as he dropped down in the saddle there, as they girded the saddle on. And I heard that horse screaming and bawling and spitting, I thought, “Oh, oh. That ain’t that old plow horse that I had at home.”
When he jumped out of there, this fellow jumped right in the saddle; he made about two side wheels, like that and done a sunfish; and saddle, man, and all went out. When he hit the ground the pick-ups got the horse and the ambulance got the man. The blood was running out of his nose and ears and everything. Here come the caller by, said, “I will give any man fifty dollars who will ride him thirty seconds.”
Well, I… Come riding down through there, said, “All right.” All them cowboys setting on the fence… Said, “I will give any man fifty dollars who will ride him thirty seconds.” That would be like offering two thousand today nearly. Boy, that fifty dollars sounded awful good. He looked right at me and said, “Are you a rider?”
I said, “No, sir.” That wasn’t no plow horse.
That’s the reason now when I talk about… When I’m home around the church, say, “You a preacher?”
But when I get out around these preachers, like this, say, “You a preacher?”
I say, “No, sir.”
No. But I do love the Word of the Lord, and I love to worship Him anywhere when we have fellowship around the Word of the Lord. Now, a few little texts that usually I use out like this. Home I go into the Bible, teaching the Old Testament and New, and so forth, not in…?… Greek and Hebrew, because I don’t know it. It’s just the way I see it here, and the way the Holy Spirit will reveal to me.
This afternoon, if the Lord’s willing, I’d like to take a little text here. Maybe I—some of you here might’ve heard me preach on it. I’ve preach on four or five different little subjects around over the country, something like there of “Come and See a Man.” I usually use that sometime. That’s… “The Woman At The Well,” and usually try to approach it in a different manner, so that each time it’ll be different. A little text like that, because I don’t want to get too far off on that side, ’cause when I go back tonight to take back the services, it’s a different anointing and it upsets me sometimes. See?
So or “Believest Thou This? or—or “Four Ways of Seeing God,” or “Then He Cried,” or little things like that.
So this afternoon I want to read out of Saint John the—the—of the… “Even Now, Lord.”
I want to read out of Saint John the 11th chapter. And the reading of the Word, God will produce the results by the reading of the Word. Don’t you believe that? I have spoke on this somewhere before, maybe, in the neighborhood somewhere here, or somewhere across the country. If I have, I’m going to try to approach it in a different way. Let’s take those…
And now, Brother Baxter’s the one does the preaching. I just come down. It kinda relaxes me a little this afternoon and then for tonight.
The 11th chapter of Saint John, and let's begin about the 18th or 19th, 18th verse, let's say, and read just a little portion here of the Scripture.
Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off:
And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother.
Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary set still in the house.
Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou had been here, my brother had not died.
But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask God, God will give it thee.
Jesus said unto her, Thy brother shall rise again.
Martha said unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.
Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
Whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?
She said, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which is come into the world.
Now, let's bow our heads just a moment to speak to the Author of this Book.
Lord Jesus, Master of Life, Giver of all good gifts by Thy grace, we know that we are saved, not because of our merit, but because the grace of God has been shed abroad in our hearts, by the Holy Spirit. At one time we were aliens, cut off from God, Gentiles, worshiping dumb idols. But in due season Christ died, the Innocent for the guilty, taking us to the Father. And now, we are sons and daughters of God. It does not yet appear what we shall be like, but we know we shall have a body like His, for we shall see Him as He is.
Lord, how we groan in these bodies, to be clothed upon with immortality, to be clothed upon with His Spirit, that someday...
We know this, that in the Old Testament the blood of bulls and goats could not take away sin. It only covered sin. And living just waiting in paradise for the day that sin should be taken away. But when Jesus came, the Son of God, the Messiah, He took away sin. He divorced it, never covered it, He took it away. Then, now, since then, if this earthly tabernacle be dissolved we have one waiting in glory; we go straight to the Presence of the Father, there to be clothed in immortality. Oh, if this earthly tabernacle, if it should be taken away, this afternoon... Born in sin, shaped in iniquity, come to the world speaking lies, sinners by nature, then God who redeemed us and He redeemed our soul, and has a blessed body waiting for us, that will never be sick, even above temptation, a body like His own glorious body, then we shall see Him as He is.
Now, Father, we're approaching Your Word. There's no man was able to open the Book, or to loose the Seals thereof. But the Lamb which was slain from the foundation of the world, He was worthy. And He came and took the Book out of the right hand of Him, and opened the Book and loosed the Seals. And now, may the Holy Spirit come, get all these words, that we've just read. And may He speak, today, go right out over this audience here, and may the Holy Spirit give to the Church just what we have need of: faith.
Prepare a service for tonight, Lord. May tonight be the greatest service, not because of us here, but because that Thou art here. May it be the greatest service that this Philadelphian church has had since it's been established. May there be a shake go forth tonight, that will have the Holy God of heaven to set us back there in a big stadium, an auditorium somewhere, that will shake Chicago for three or four months. Grant it, Father.
Do the exceedingly abundantly today. Prepare the hearts just now. Break up the ground, grub out all the green briars, and the stickers, and the thorns, and roots of bitterness, and bring down the Holy Spirit, so that tonight, that the Angel of the God might sweep over this building in a great meeting, for we ask it in Jesus' Name. Amen.
Thank you, brother.
To the approach to the Word now just for a few moments... I'll take my watch off. I don't know where the clock is. It's a... And I try to stay no longer than...?... So that you'll have ample time to get ready.
And my son, just a few moments ago, asked me to announce to the people, that wants prayer cards for tonight, to be here at six o'clock tonight, if possible, to receive prayer cards; those who are afflicted and in need, and to be here at six o'clock tonight to receive the prayer cards.
Now, our Scripture has rolled back the page just before the... Or this time was in the ministry of our Lord. He has just become very famous because of God being with Him. He was a Man with not no beauty we should desire Him. He was--He wasn't much to look upon, probably a little frail-looking Fellow. And the Bible said that He was not beautiful, in the way, a big six-footer like, or seven-footer like Saul. But He was a small Man.
The Bible said, "We hid, as it were, our face from Him, yet we did esteem Him, smitten, stricken--stricken, afflicted of God." But it's the works that God was doing in Him, was outstanding, that the people knew that He come from God.
For even the great teacher said, that came to Him by night, Nicodemus...?... "We know that Thou art a teacher come from God, 'cause no man could do these things that You do, 'less God was with him." They knowed beyond a shadow of doubt.
Now, the ministry of them days, said, now, "He's a psychiatrist. He's a--He's a mind-reader. He reads your mind. That's how He knows what's wrong with them people; He reads your mind." He did. And Jesus was a mind-reader. That shocked you, didn't it? But He was. He perceived their thoughts. Is that right? Well, that's mind-reading. See? Not one of these sitting out here, one of these little women sitting out on the corner, taking the palm of your hand; that's the substitute the Devil's got, something to imitate it. That's the bogus dollar to the real dollar. See?
Everything God has done, the Devil's made a substitute for it, made something bogus. See? And that's the reason the two spirits in the last days, come right along, and be as formal and fundamental they miss the spirit altogether (You see?), like that. And some of these on the radical side go plumb off into isms with it, but right in the middle of the road runs the true Church of God, standing in there and full of the power of God. There's where it's at.
Now, certainly, everything that God has, Satan has something to counterfeit. See, he makes something off of it. And Jesus did perceive their thoughts, so therefore the great Orthodox of those days, said, "That Guy is the best fortuneteller in the country. He's Beelzebub, the prince of the Devil." Is that right? Now, that's what the preachers said. And the great Bible teachers of that day said, "He is Beelzebub."
Now, let's see what the Devil said. The Devil said, "He's the Son of God. We know Who You are, the holy One of God." Is that right? In that case the devils had more knowledge of God than the ministry did. Is that right?
When Paul and Silas was up there and they was doing some great works for God, there was a little old fortuneteller run up-and-down the street, every day, and cried behind Paul. Said, "There's the man that tell us the way of life. That's the man of God."
And here was the preachers, said, "They're impostors. They turn the world upside-down. They're no good." And the... There was the ministry saying, "They're impostors." And the Devil saying, "They're men of God." Which was right? See, the Devil was right. Is that right? Sure he was. So you see, even them people...
You can get so much on the Word, you think, "Oh, the Word, the Word." That's right. But the Gospel came not in Word only; but through power and demonstration of the Holy Spirit, until the Word is made Life. See?
Wheat is all right in your hand, but you'll never get a crop out of it. You got to bury it, and let it take on new life. Is that right?
Now, the Word is right; this is God's way, of course. But just the Word, "The letter, killeth, but the Spirit giveth Life." See what I mean?
Now, and therefore, the enemy had to testify of God. In His ministry here He went forth, and things begin to happen. And then the church was all closed down on Him and said, "Now, if anybody goes over there to hear Him, we'll just get your... send your papers in. You'll have to go out. You're no more."
But there's some people by the name of Martha and Mary and Lazarus, brothers and sisters. And they heard Jesus, and they seen His miracles, so they didn't care whether He was... what the Orthodox said, what the church said, or nothing about it. They believed Him and they went with Him. And they believed Him, because they knew He was a Man of God. So He came to stay in their house, at--at Bethany.
And now, while He was living there with--with them, His ministry got so great, that one day He had to go away from the home. They crowded Him out, too much, too many people around the place. And the people would come to Him by the thousands, and He'd slip off away from them, go off somewhere else (See?), to be alone with the Father, to pray. The cities would call for Him, but He would go up in the mountain, alone, see which way the Father would lead. He came to do the work of the Father. That's what we ought to be about, today, our Father's business (That's right.), not so much in the social ranks and--and so forth, but in the Father's business.
Now, let's take this wonderful Jesus just a minute, and watch His coming, just before He came. There was a... First, before His coming, there was announcement. The church had all got all back and all messed up, just about like it is today. And one having this, the Pharisees, Sadducees, Publicans, array, oh, all kinds of isms around. And that, even some men come up and claimed he was a great one, who led hundreds out in the wilderness, and they perished. You know the story. And all like that...
But it finally come the time, or need, to come...?... was waiting for Him. And one day... Let's watch.
I see an old man and a woman, way passed the age of bearing, the woman was. And she said, they had prayed for God all these years to take away her reproach, and she could bear children, as was an honor for any Hebrew woman to have a child.
How they changed that now. It's almost a dishonor to have a child. Now, isn't that right? You might not say amen, but it's the truth. A woman had rather pay a hundred dollars to a little old smashed-nosed dog, and give it a mother's love out here, than to fool with a baby. Now, you know that's the truth. Walk it down the street with a little sweater on it. And I seen one of the biggest clinics, I ever seen, nearly, out here, is a dog clinic. I don't figure it. I can't see it. All right. Anyhow, that's up between you and God.
Now, look. Then Zacharias was a righteous man, a priest. And he come to the house of God; his--his office was in there to burn incense while the people were praying. And then, one day while he was burning incense, the time of the promise was drawing nigh. And God sent an Angel down to the altar. Do you believe in Angels? [Congregation says, "Amen."--Ed.] Yes, sir.
Someone said, not long ago, said, "Brother Branham, you're mistaken about that Man that talks to you." Said, "That was the Lord." I said, "It was an Angel."
He said, "I am sent from the Presence of God." He wasn't the Lord. He was an Angel.
"Oh," said, "that's all mistaken." Said, "Brother Branham, God in old times, in the Bible, spoke," said, "there was Daniel and all of them. Yeah, they were... Had Angels and so forth, like that, but not New Testament doctrine."
And this man was a man, said, "We speak where the Bible speaks, and silent where the Bible is silent."
I thought, "How silent He was on anything that the Bible spoke." I said, "Do you mean to tell me that you don't believe that, the Angels of God...?"
The man said, "No, sir. The Holy Spirit leads the Church."
I said, "That's correctly. But they have ministering spirits sent from the Presence of God."
He said, "Not in the New Testament, brother."
I said, "Oh, yes, in the New Testament."
He said, "The Holy Spirit, not Angels, the Holy Spirit..."
I said, "Look, I want to ask you something." I said, "It was the Angel of God Who met Mary."
He said, "Yeah, but that was before Pentecost. After Pentecost," he said, "it was the Holy Spirit from then on."
I said, "Truly the Holy Spirit leads the Church; that's true. But look," I said, "do you believe that Philip had the baptism of the Holy Spirit?"
Do you believe it, all of you? Sure, he did. Well, when he was down in Samaria holding a revival, who was it that spoke to him and said, "Go out into the desert, Gaza"? Was it the Holy Spirit? No, sir. An Angel of the Lord spoke to him. Is that right? "Go out into the desert, Gaza, and speak."
Look, how many believes that--that Peter had the Holy Spirit? Let's see. You believe he had the baptism of the Holy Spirit? When he was in prison that night, and down at John Mark's house, was having a prayer meeting for him, Who was it, like a light that shined in the window and opened the doors for him? Was it the Holy Spirit? The Angel of the Lord.
How many believes Paul had the Holy Ghost? Well, when he was out there on the ship fourteen days and nights, no moon, stars, and all hope was gone, he went down in the gallery to pray, he come back up. Said, "Have a good courage, for the Angel of God, Whose servant I am, stood by me last night, saying, 'Fear not, Paul.'" Is that right? The Angel of the Lord...
The whole Book of Revelations was wrote by the witness of an Angel. "I, Jesus, have sent My Angel to testify of these things to write to the Church." Is that right?
John fell down to worship the Angel. And the Angel said, "Do it not." Now, it's not Joseph Smith. But He said... A true Angel won't stand to be worshipped. You know that. No, sir. He said, "Worship God."
And God still has Angels. And if they visit the people... Not a worship of Angels. But Angelic Beings Who are attributes of God, sent forth to minister to the Church, through the people. Oh, my. How short we are of the real apostolic Church today.
We people who claim to be there, who claim to have kissed the blessings of the rims of the cup of blessing, how short we come. How we bubble dance on top of the suds, and know not what the bottom is. That's true.
Now, friends, when I stand back here, I'm responsible, not to the audience, but to God. That's right. And my words must be... I know that I got many millions of people that listen and watch every word you say, so I must be, with all my heart, just as true to God as I can be. And I say today, that we've never scratched the surface. That's right. The Church ought to get down. My. We was reading... It's like reading, writing, and arithmetic.
Notice. Now, this Angel came, He was Gabriel. Now, God sends minor Angels (That's right.), perhaps the One comes here. And some people will actually puff their mind up with Angels and things, who they think they have seen, and things like that. That's just the counterfeit.
If a man has seen an Angel of God, and met God his commissioned, or that Angel commissioned him from God, and It was sent from God, it'll bear record right down to the line, that it's the truth. You believe that? But if it doesn't, it isn't the truth. That's one thing you can depend on, "By their fruits you shall know them." That's truth.
Now, notice this, that this Angel was Gabriel. Now, these minor Angels come; but when you see or hear of Gabriel coming, you get ready for something major fixing to happen. Gabriel was the One Who announced the first coming of Jesus Christ. Is that right? And we're taught in the Bible that Gabriel will announce the second coming. He will sound the trumpet of God (is that right?), the coming of the Lord, the Angel of God, Gabriel, Who stands at the--God's right hand.
Now, this great Gabriel come down in here, with the priest swinging his incense here, burning it, while the people was out praying. He was standing at the altar. And he looked over on the--the side of the altar, and there stood the great Archangel. It frightened the priest. And He told him all about his life, and things, and what he was going to do. Said, "After days of your ministration here, go home to Elisabeth, your wife. And she's going to bear a child, and you'll call his name John."
Well now, look. That priest now, said, "How can these things be? She's old." See?
There's righteous people walking in all the Light of the Lord; that's the kind of a home that God can get into. Now, if you're serving all kinds of--of parties, and beer, and everything in your house, God will never visit you there. That's right. But if you got a home that's cleaned up, and living for God, with prayer, the Bible open, and a few tear stains on it, God can visit you. That's right. 'Cause you've opened up a channel that He can come to.
But there is where it was. Now, when God had answered the prayer of Zecharias and Elisabeth, it like to scared him to death, of course. He didn't think that it could happen. But He said, "I'm Gabriel, Who stands in the Presence of God, and My words shall be fulfilled in their season." And then he came back out, and the people... He was stricken dumb. And he was going to be dumb until the day the baby was born.
And then out come Zecharias, and the people... He beckoned to the people. They seen that he seen a vision or something. So he went home, and Elisabeth conceived and hid herself six months. And she was to be a mother.
The then watch, just down in Nazareth, the meanest city in the country, worse than Chicago, probably. Then, pretty near as bad as Jeffersonville, where I come from. Then the first thing you know, well, there, a little virgin one day, engaged to a man about forty-five years old, widower with about four children.
Why, she was coming home, in the oriental type. Probably it was on a Monday. She was packing her wash water on top of her head, maybe, in a jar as they do it, walking along. And all at once, before her flashed a big Light. She... Frightened the little virgin. She looked. And there was a Gabriel standing by her side. Said, "Hail Mary." or "Stop." Said, "Blessed art thou among women." Said, told her how that her cousin Elisabeth had conceived in her old age, and was going to bear a child. And said that she was going to have a Child, knowing no man.
Now, look at the difference between Zecharias, that minister, who had studied the Scriptures over and over, and over and over, and over and over again, had plenty of examples: There was Sarah, Hannah, and so forth, back in the Old Testament, plenty of examples. He--he doubted it to be so. But this little girl didn't doubt. She said, "Behold the handsmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to Thy Word." What a difference.
Now, sometimes you can callous yourself. Reading the Bible, and just like reading a newspaper, and having about the same kind of faith that you have in one, then you callous yourself. When you read God's Word, believe It just like It says It is there, and take God at His Word.
Now, as soon as she read this, or she seen this before her, and the Angel of the Lord said, "You're going to have a baby." Look what she had to believe. Well, she had to believe something that had never happened. Zecharias didn't have to... Plenty times did that happen through the Scriptures. He had plenty of examples. But Mary had to believe something that was total impossible, and had never happened before. But yet, she didn't stagger at it; she just said, "Behold the handsmaid of the Lord. Be it unto me." She took God at His Word.
And today, right here now, while hundreds of people are around the world has been healed in these great campaigns of this latter revival that's sweeping the world. Right today, right at this minute, dozens, and scores of people, in meetings here in United State, are being healed right now by the power of God; plenty of examples, every day, every night. And yet, we sit and wonder, "God, why don't You do this," and, "why don't You do that?" Take God at His Word.
Mary said, "Behold the handsmaid of the Lord." She started rejoicing. She was happy. God had promised it; she knowed she was going to have the baby. I believe I spoke something about it last night. She didn't wait till she felt life. She didn't wait till she was positive. She didn't wait till any visible sign. She just believed what the Angel said was the Truth. There you are.
The trouble of it is, we question God. And if we question God, we can't believe God. Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things you don't see, taste, feel, smell, or hear. Amen.
I begin to feel a little religious right now. I... All right. Oh, take God at His Word. She begin to rejoice and praise God, just as soon as she heard. "Faith cometh by hearing, hearing by the Word of God." Is that right? [Congregation says, "Amen."--Ed.] "Faith cometh by hearing."
Soon as you hear the Word of God says you can be set free, believe it. Rejoice with it. God will show the evidence after you've accepted it. But first you accept it.
Christ died for sinners. I believe it. I accept it. I start rejoicing. God works righteousness by it.
I believe He was striped for my healing. I believe it. I accept it. God's Word is healing for me. See, just as soon as I believe. He can't help me till I believe. I've got to believe and confess it, first, and then God's under obligation to His Word.
And if He's Almighty God, He can do all things. And if He cannot do all things, He's not Almighty God. There it is. All right.
Notice. What kind of a boy ought this to be? What kind of a person? God keeping His Word, God promised to do anything, God will do it.
When the children of Israel was led out of Egypt, God promised to take care of them as they journeyed through the wilderness. God said He would take care of them, and He did do it. No matter where the path led, and the enemy got in God's path, it give away.
I can see them come up to the Red Sea. God had His map drawed out, way He was going to take them. They moved right up to the Red Sea: no way at all to cross it. Here was Pharaoh's army, the mountains on one side, Pharaoh's army here, the Red Sea in front of them. Moses lifted up his hands. Psalms 72 said God looked down. He seen that path laying through the bottom of the sea. There was His children right there, needing the promise, taking God at His Word.
God looked down through that Pillar of Fire, and with angered eyes. And when He did, the sea got scared and moved back like that, and made a dry path, and Israel walked through on dry ground. Take God at His Word.
When they crossed the Red Sea, them uncircumcised, those people pretending to be, like the make-believer today, trying to do so, perished. Then a great victory come when they seen the opposite side perish.
Miriam got in the Spirit, grabbed up a tambourine, and went down the bank, dancing. Kinda shock you here. Dancing, beating the tambourine. And the daughters of Israel followed her, beating tambourines and dancing in the Spirit. If that ain't an old fashion revival, I don't know nothing about it: Victory.
There laid the dead ones, laying in the back, the ones that all the things had bothered them...
When that old sickness that's bothered you, that old stomach trouble. Oh, my! When that old spike, that old sin, them things that set you back and held you back; when you walk through the Blood of Jesus yonder, and God has cleansed your soul, there'll be another dancing party take place. The joybells of heaven will leap up in your heart.
There was the leader, Moses, got so excited. Yeah. He threw his hands up in the air, and sung a song in the Spirit. Sounds like camp meeting time, doesn't it? Yes, sir.
Now, they had come away from all their crops. They had come away from everything they had. A little basket of kneaded bread on top of their head, they packed out, was eaten: no bread, nothing to eat. "God has promised." All right.
They went to bed that night. They woke up the next morning, and the ground laid full of manna: God supplying everything they had need of. There was manna laying all over the ground. They went out and picked it up. And when they begin to eat it, it taste like honey. Oh, my. Did you ever eat some of it, some of the manna? What a beautiful type.
Now, He said, "Don't pick up enough, today, on Saturday. Just Saturday, alone to last through the Sabbath." He said, "Pick up just enough today to eat today; tomorrow get some new. The trouble of it is with people today, they're trying to depend on experience they had about twenty years ago. You know what happened to that manna? It got wiggletails in it, overnight.
And that's what's the matter with a lot of our Pentecostal experiences, we're relying on something that happened way back yonder, and it gets wiggletails in it, and gets stale. What about today? This is the day. Today is the time. All right.
Now, I notice on that. Wonderful... It said, "Tastes like honey in the rock." David said it, "How sweet it was." There's something about honey that God likes.
Notice, David being a shepherd, the shepherd used to carry--carry a scrip bag on their side. And in this scrip bag they put honey. And when their sheep would get sick, they'd take some of this honey, and they would rub it on a rock. And the sick sheep would go over, go to licking on this rock, and while licking the honey off, he got the limestone off the rock, and the limestone healed the sick sheep.
What a beautiful type today. Listen, friends, I got a whole scrip bag full of honey here, and I'm going to put it on the Rock, Christ Jesus, and you sick sheep start licking now, and you're sure to get well, just as certain as anything. Lick from Calvary, not from some man's hand or some superstition, but off of Calvary, not off the Baptist church, Methodist church, Presbyterian, Pentecostal; but off of Calvary, the Rock of Ages. Lick off of that. And they got well. And if there ever was a time that sick sheep ought to go to licking, is today.
Notice, God said, "Now, I want you to do this: Go out and get some great omers full of it, and put it back, to carry it in the holy place, that all the generation that's to follow after, when they come in... Every man that come into the priesthood, that was a subject to the priesthood, could go in and get a bite of the original manna. That back in the holy place didn't receive deterioration. It kept its full value. And every priest, after being ordained a priest, could come to the veil, then every one could take a bite of the original manna that fell on the first day that manna fell. That's when God called them to go get a omers full of the first.
What a beautiful type of the Holy Spirit, on the day of Pentecost. As God led the Church, natural, through the wilderness, now God's leading His Church, spiritual. And our manna, our Life-sustaining resource comes by the Holy Spirit. And as soon as the apostles had crossed out all the fear and doubt, and gathered in the upper room, God gave them the baptism of the Holy Spirit. When It fell down, that was our Manna coming from God out of heaven, like a rushing mighty wind, filled all the room where they were setting. Cloven tongues set upon them like fire; out the building they went into the streets, and begin to preach and testify, God working miracles. Is that right? Our Manna...
Now, did God lay some of that back? Peter said in Acts 2:30 and 38, he said, "Repent, every one of you and be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins, for you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to them that's far off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call."
Then today, if God's still calling, every man or woman that comes to the fountain filled with Blood drawn from Emmanuel veins, and becomes a priest, or a child, a born child of God, in the Kingdom of God, has a right to the original baptism of the Holy Ghost, not a mouthful, but a whole soul full of the same power that fell on the day of Pentecost.
I'm not excited. I know where I am. Let me tell you something, brother. What the Church needs today, is not a new mayor of the city, or a new Democrat, or new Republican party. It needs an old fashion, God-sent, Holy Ghost revival, and the Bible Holy Ghost back in the Church again. That's what It needs. How marvelous. Yes, sir.
When they were thirsty, they smote the rock. They drank from the well, from the rock. When they were needy, God supplied need. When the Christ was ready to come to the earth, God made arrangement.
Now, look at little Mary. Here she takes off up into the wilderness, up into the mountains to see Elisabeth her cousin. Jesus and John were half--were second cousins. Mary and Elisabeth were first cousins. And they went up into the mountains, she did, to enjoy the fellowship of her cousin.
That's what we need to do today. Just... The deadest thing in the world is the dead sea, who takes everything in and gives nothing out. Or if we come to a meeting, God fills our soul with glory, we ought to tell fifty people a day, everywhere, every day tell another fifty, another fifty. Give out. That keeps the cistern cleaned out. All right.
Notice. Then up into the mountains they went. And I can see her as she begins to approach. I see the woman run out. She's setting there. Let's dramatize this a little. I can see her setting there, a knitting, you know, or crocheting, or what the women would do in them days. She seen Mary coming; she threw down her crochet and her knitting. Up she went, real quick, grabbed her up in her arms, throwed her arms around her, and kissed her and said, "Oh, Mary, I'm so happy to see you." Love, one for the other, that's all gone about now. Now, isn't that the truth? All gone...
Why today, you don't even know your neighbor is dead, till you read it in the paper. Isn't that right? I remember when we used to be able to borrow money and every thing from the farm, the other farmer. Now you try to do it. You have to have some security. It's a shame.
Love, that's what the world is dying for today, is love. They won't need to be so Orthodox in your teaching. Some fellow, maybe, there wouldn't be two of us in here, agree upon the same thing, but we can agree this: that the love of God shed abroad in our heart by the Holy Ghost. Let's have love one for another.
Jesus said, "This will all men know that you're My disciples, when you have love one for the other."
Now, here not long ago, I was down in Florida. I just want to pass this. Mr. Bosworth, many of you know him, old Daddy Bosworth, F. F. Bosworth, held great meetings here years ago. Some of you old mothers and dads remember him in Chicago. And when we were down there, he just... When he first come into my meeting, we was having... I went down there, was a little kid, was holding a meeting. They had... He said, "He was just about to go under." So went down and had a meeting, and that night a Duchess come up. I think that's what you call it, one of these women, you know, that's high society.
And so Brother Bosworth said, "Brother Branham, this Duchess that owns this, all this property out here, wants to see you."
I said, "Well, I can't now."
And so when we passed through the tent that night, back in the little prayer room, here she was standing there. Oh, brother, under-dressed and over-painted, you know. Two great big earrings hanging down, looked like the stirrups for the Devil, you know, the saddle setting right between her neck, and riding right down. And there she set there. And she had a pair of glasses out, she held. I'm not making fun of the woman, but not enough clothes on to wad a good musket shotgun. And there she stood out there with these glasses on a stick like this, you know, holding it out like that. She said, "Are you Dr. Branham?"
I said, "No, ma'am." She said... I said, "I'm Brother Branham."
She said, "Well, I am so charmed to meet you."
Well, I didn't know what the woman was talking about. I reached up and got a hold of that big old hand, fat hand there, with about forty rings on it, looked to me like. I got it. I said, "Get it down here, so I will know when I see you again." Yeah. Putting on a lot of dog. What was she? Six foot of dirt, out yonder. That's right.
Oh, that's the way it is today. How can He expect anything more, when people just bathe their souls in all kinds of corruption and things.
"Birds of feathers flock together." You know some of the most beautiful outside birds there is, are scavengers. That's right. Well, if they don't notice the outside, it's the inside that counts. That's right. All right.
There, Mary run out and met... Mary went and met Elisabeth, and she hugged her. And she said, "Oh, my, I'm so happy to know that you're to have the child."
She said, "Yes, I'm to have the baby. That's true."
Said, "You know, the Lord appeared to me also." See? She had a blessing to--to explain. Said, "The Lord has appeared to me and told me that I was to going to have Baby, knowing no man. And I would call His Name Jesus."
And little John, as far as we know, had never received life. Elisabeth said, she was scared. It was six months with her, then with baby, with the baby, and no life. That's subnormal. That's altogether subnormal, about two or three months. And here it was six months, no life.
And just as soon as Mary spoke the Name "Jesus," little John received life, begin to leap in his mother's womb for joy. If the first time the Name of Jesus Christ, spoke through mortal lips, brought life to a dead baby, what ought It to do to a born again Church? Hallelujah. What ought It to do to a sick person? That Name "Jesus" brought a dead baby to life.
And the Bible said that John received the baptism of the Holy Ghost, or received the Holy Ghost in his mother's womb, and was born full of the Holy Ghost. Hallelujah. There you are. Received joy, and begin leaping and jumping. And the Holy Ghost come upon his mother, and she prophesied. Oh, my. Talk about short of the Kingdom of God? Yes, sir.
Then Mary returned back after staying with her many days. Look at little old John when he was born. "What manner of child should this be?"
"Well, I guess we will have to send Him off to the seminary," cemetery, whatever you want. It's both a dead place.
A seminary preacher puts me in the mind of a incubator chicken. A little incubator chicken's turned out mechanically, and the little fellow just chirps and chirps for a mammy, and ain't got any to go to. That's just exactly like an incubator preacher. He's got reading, writing, arithmetic, knows how to stand so proper, and bow his head, and holler "amen" like a dying calf. And knows no more about God than an Hottentot knows about an Egyptian night. That's right. You know it's true. Might not say, "Amen," it, but it's the truth. That's right.
Oh, I don't care if my boy don't even know his ABC's, I want him to know Christ, the full pardon of sin, and receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Hallelujah. They don't know split peas from coffee. That don't make any difference to me, as long as he knows Christ and the forgiveness of sin.
Look at this little old fellow at nine years old, took out into the wilderness, not to some seminary to have some embalming fluid pumped into him. No, sir. He went out into the wilderness. There he lived with God until he was thirty years old. You know the birth of Jesus... We're running short of time, so I won't take time to rehearse that. You know it. But at thirty years old, "What kind of a preacher ought this to be?" Here he comes out of the wilderness, not with his collar turned around, and the back, the tuxedo coat--coat on, eating fried chicken and biscuits every day for dinner. No, sir. Hallelujah.
He come out of the wilderness an old pair of hairy trousers on, and a sheepskin belt wrapped him around like that. But he preached repentance.
I can see him. Herod come up, you know, living with his brother Philip's wife. I can hear some of the elders come out, say, "Don't preach on marriage and divorce, today, now. There's Herod sitting down there." Old John, full of the Holy Ghost (Could you imagine holding him back?) walked right straight up in his face, and said, "It's not lawful for you to have her." That's right. God, give us some Johns.
Why, I say, today, what the Baptist church needs some more Johns like John the Baptist, who'll not compromise, but will preach the unrichable--the unsearchable riches of Christ. Brother, he didn't have no education, never know he had a day of schooling. He never had no degree of any kind, no Bachelor or Bachelor's degree, or whatever you want to call it. D.D.D.D., or ever-what you want to call it.
You know what D.D. stands for? Dead dog. All right. He knowed nothing of that. But he told them where they lived and what to do. God, give us some more Baptists like that. That's exactly right.
Said, "It's not lawful for you to have her." True.
Some fellow, the other day, I was talking about some lady; I was quoting a story about some lady up playing the piano. And now you can... Now, this is your own business. That's up to you. See? But the lady, she had on so much make-up, that woman had enough paint on to paint a barn almost. And there, he said, this man said, "Brother Branham, this is my wife." Said, "She's a saint."
I said, "Brother, I don't want to hurt your feelings; she looks like 'hain't.' She don't look no saint to me." That's what...
You know what a 'hain't' is? Down in the south, that's a spook. All right. Let me tell you. Listen. The only woman in the Bible that ever painted her face to meet a man, was Jezebel, and God fed her to the dogs. So if you're standing... These people that's supposed to be so good, and got the Holy Ghost. You can say, "How do you do, Miss Dog Meat." That's what God calls her, is dog meat, for him. You see? All right.
Let me tell you what we need today is preachers to take their gloves off and stand in the pulpit, and claim the full Gospel of Jesus Christ in the power and demonstration of the Holy Ghost. Have to be where you have to shake them a little bit this way, and compromise a little bit this way. That's just exactly the way the Lutherans done. That's the way the Methodists done, that's the way the Baptists done. And that's the way the Pentecost is doing. Whew! You ain't going to like me after this. But I don't...
Let me tell you something. It's the main thing, I'm responsible before God. That's right. I believe... I believe that to be the solemn truth of God. Yes, sir. The only thing you have to do is get that heart right.
Now, we all lived here in these middle east, middle eastern states. We got a oak tree out here. Every year, all though the winter, the oak tree packs its leaves just the same. Spring of the year, there's the old leaf off the tree. You don't have to go pick them off. Just let the new life come up, the old leaf goes off. When a man is really born again, and a... his heart, woman or man, the old life drops away, and the new life comes in and takes its place. Just--just let them get right with God, then you can notice. By their fruits you shall know them.
And let me tell you, my friend. I better shut up right here. That's right. I remember in my life story, the first little taste that I had to go out. I had a little old girl, and I thought... You know, how your first girlfriend. Oh, she had eyes like a dove, and a neck like a swan, and teeth like pearl. I thought she was the prettiest thing I ever seen. And when we went out, we... boy friend and I; we got Coke's and some sandwich. I come out to give some sandwich to my little girl. And she was eating and the sandwich, and we drank the Coke's. I was going to run the bottles back in. When I come back out... That was just the days when women begin to lose their grace, you know. And so, here she was, smoking a cigarette. I looked at her. I always had my opinion of a woman who smoked a cigarette, and I still have today. It's the lowest thing she ever done. Don't let your face get red. See? Don't get up and walk out, you know, when you're guilty. All right. But let me tell you something. If God thinks... If He thinks that that's the way the Angel of God witnesses me here, right this afternoon on the platform, You'll have a hard time getting in the gates yonder, I tell you when you come up before Him. First, quit. Stop. Lay aside these things. The hour of judgment is at hand. And if the virgin Mary had to go in yonder in the upper room, and tarry till she received the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and come out staggering like a drunk woman, you'll never get to heaven, anything cheaper than that. That's right. When a man...
Listen at me. I'm telling you the truth. Get God down in here, and He will take care of the rest of it. Now, then just look around. You don't have to say... "Well, I got it." The fruits show it's not. So that's... Just don't say it. Just go ahead; you know where you're at. All right.
Now, look. Then I seen John, when he came out there and begin to preach, my, just with repentance, as hard as he could preach. Laying the axe to the root of the tree, and every tree that bringeth forth not good fruit, is hewn down, cast into the sea. And then notice, or into the fire, rather.
Then along came Jesus. When He was baptized, went straightway out of the water, and the Voice of God spoke said, "This is My beloved Son in whom I'm well pleased." Into the wilderness He went to be tempted of the Devil. Every man and woman, as soon as you're baptized with the Holy Ghost, immediately the Devil sets in from every side. If he didn't, then you better go back.
Then every time when you get healed, here comes symptoms moving right around, and they tempt you. If it didn't, be careful. See? Faith's always there to accept what God has done.
Then His ministry got great and away He went. Out into a... Then comes to our text. Quickly now.
Then we see, Lazarus... He went away from the home. And as soon as Jesus left the home, sickness set in, sorrow set in. And listen, Christians, when Jesus leaves your home, sickness and trouble will set right in behind it. When He leaves your home, get ready for trouble, 'cause it's on its road right then. You welcome Him in your house. Let Him be the unseen Guest. Set down at the table, never eat without thanking Him for it.
I see many people, call theirself Christians, never return thanks, just as illiterate as a hog under an apple tree. A hog can sit under an apple tree, and the apples would beat him on the head all day long, and he will eat till he can't grunt no more, hardly; but he will never look up to see where they're coming from. That's right. That's exactly the truth. People just so, "unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, and despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God: having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." That's what the Spirit said in Timothy. Is that right?
Here we are living in today, and Pentecost getting right into it. You holiness people going right into it, just head long. That's true. Oh, my. What a sad sight it is. What we need today, brother, is a revival, a stirring, a breaking down, breaking up, down to the potter's house again.
Watch. I see Jesus now go away from the home. Lazarus took sick. Now, this is history; we told her she had hemorrhages in his lungs. I don't know. That's not the Bible; that's just historian writing. They had hemorrhages. When Jesus went away from the home, then Martha and Mary, and all of them, had left the synagogue, and was following Jesus. They sent for Jesus to come pray for Lazarus. You think He done it? He walked right on away.
Now, if that would be you, huh, if you sent for your pastor and he wouldn't have come, you'd said, "Why, the old hypocrite. I will never go back to the Philadelphian church again. I will never go back no more."
He didn't come. But if Mary would've thought that, and Martha, what a day it would've been. Now, he never ask me to say that, I just said that. That's to any church. You've got to have faith in your pastor, as a man of God. If he isn't... He isn't, get him out, and get somebody in there that is. That's right. Don't stop the church. That's right, go on. If he isn't a man of God, if he doesn't live, and do, and act, and preach what he should, take him out and put somebody else in that will do it.
Now, now, then you got to have confidence. This is the house of judgment, the house of God, where God comes down and passes His judgment. Your pastor is supposed to be a righteous man. The congregation is supposed to be with him, one hundred percent. You're supposed to be just a hundred percent together. And in there, if you're not, then Satan's got a way to get in. You got a loophole somewhere, going to have everything cleared out.
Then when they sent again for Jesus. Instead of doing that, He just went on; never come, or said a word about it. He'd had a vision from the Father. I will pick that up there, tonight, if I can. He'd had a vision from the Father, that Lazarus was going to die, and He had to follow His vision. Of course, He did. He went on. After while, they said...
He said, "My friend Lazarus sleepeth."
Well, the disciples, they said, "Well, if he's asleep, he's doing very well then; he's recovering. He's getting better."
Then He let them know in their own language. He said, "He's dead. And for your sake I am glad I wasn't there. But I go wake him." He knowed where He was going. God had already told him. He followed what the Father said do, not what man told Him; what God said. He knowed just what to do.
I can hear some of them say, "Hey. That holy-roller was right here, preaching Divine healing. And, oh, He so he got sick with that hemorrhages, that was too much of a job for Him. He's been away. Now, we'll see about that." All right.
Then said, "I go wake him."
Now, the first day passed... Grievous things had come in, and got Lazarus, took, embalmed his body, took him out, and buried him in the grave. All hopes was gone.
The second day passed, still dark. Third day passed, corruption set in his body. The fourth day he had done gone.
Then the first thing you know, somebody come, and little Martha and Mary setting in the home, crying. The breadwinner was gone. Oh, they said... Look what was gone. They had give up their church. Now, the...?... seemingly had to encourage them. All hopes was gone. Their brother was dead. They was turned out of their church. This Man was teaching Divine healing, and their--their pastor, like, He was gone. All hopes, everything was gone.
And about that time, Jesus come along. That's usually when He comes: just in the darkest of hour. It was the darkest of hour, when Jesus come along.
I was laying yonder in the hospital. The doctor walked in, looked at me. He said, "My boy, you have three minutes more to live. Your heart is beating seventeen times in a minute." Darkest hour, then Jesus come along. Yes.
It was E. Howard Cadle, down here at Indianapolis, laying out here on the street, drunk, flies' blowed his mouth. He staggered into the church where he had backslid. And the Democrats has been a big rally hall out of it, and went down into the basement, drunk, staggered over to the coal pile, and there laid his mother's picture. There he prayed. The darkest hour he ever seen; cold, drunk, passed out. Then Jesus come along. Yes.
But yonder, when Mayo Brothers told me I had a short time to live, Jesus come along. It's always the darkest of hour, then He comes along. It always does, just at the time, the right time, Jesus came along.
Now, little old Martha, she had been very dilatory about things, her about--about the Kingdom of God, and so forth. But, I admire her courage. Just as soon as she heard Jesus come, here she went just as hard as she could go. I can hear them say, "Now look at her a going. I hear told out there they say that holy-roller is coming back." She just brushed him aside. She wanted to get to Jesus.
Martha had been reading over there in the Bible somewhere. One time there was a Shunammite woman who did a great favor for a prophet. She knew he was a prophet. See? Was Elijah. And Elijah blessed her and told her she was going to have a baby, at a certain day, at a certain time. And that baby was born when she was passed the age of bearing. And she brought the baby. The little baby must've got a sun stroke, or something. He said, "My head. My head." He was out in the field with his father, about eleven o'clock in the day. He sent a servant in, put the baby on the mother's lap. And the baby laid there till noontime, and died. Look at that Shunammite woman, how faithful.
She took the baby, right to the little chamber where Elijah had been sleeping. She made him a place there, where he could sleep when he come by. What a good place to take him, up to the prophet's bed, where the prophet slept. She laid him down on the--on the bed. She went out to the servant, and she said, "Saddle an ass now, and go forward, and don't stop," oh, my, "'less I bid you." Said, "Let's go over there to Mount Carmel, to where that prophet's at."
Her husband said, "It's neither new moon, nor Sabbath. He won't be there."
She said, "Everything is all right. Let me go." I like that determination. I like that. Hallelujah. "Hallelujah" means, "praise our God," in Hebrew, so don't--don't get worried about it. All right.
She started off. She said, "Don't you slack up. You drive now. Drive this mule just as hard as he can go." When she got close to Mount Carmel, she knew one thing, that God had give her that baby. And the closest representative on earth, she knowed of, was Elijah, His prophet. She didn't know why God took the baby, but she knew if she could get in contact with that prophet, 'cause God was in the prophet. "If I could get to that prophet, I will find out why my baby's dead. He was the one that told me it would come. And I know that's God's prophet. And if I can only get to him, I may have to drive hard, I may have to drive a long ways. But if I can get to the prophet, he can tell me why this baby's gone."
So here stood the prophet. God don't always tell His prophets everything is going on. So Elijah walked out to the door, and Gehazi was with him, and he said, "There comes that Shunammite." Said, "She looks worried. Something is wrong."
He said, "God's kept it from me. I don't know what's the matter." So he said, when he seen her coming, she got up close. He said, "Is all well with thee? Is all well with thy husband? Is all well with the baby?" Listen to this.
"All is well." Glory. I don't... You ain't hardly got enough room up here to preach right now.
Let me tell you something. "All is well." Why? The baby, a corpse, her husband wringing his hands, and walking the floor, and her heart broke. "All is well." Hum.
Her faith was, if she could get to the prophet. That's all what she needed to do. "I found you, Elijah. You are God's representative. God is in His prophet. And I've come here now. I'm satisfied that God will reveal it. All is well." She run up and fell down to his feet. Gehazi thought, "Here." He's supposed to be keeping people away from his master. He jerked her up.
Said, "Let her alone." Said, "Her heart's grieved. And I don't know what it's all about."
And she begin to reveal to him what had happened. Now watch. He said, "Gehazi, take my staff, and you go forward, go to the baby. If somebody speaks to you, don't speak back. Somebody salutes you; don't salute them. Somebody says, 'Hello'; don't say nothing to them. Go straight."
That's what's the matter today. When we got a Message, we stop for social affair, for dinners and parties, everything like that, and little stitch and sew, and talk about Miss. So-and-so. No wonder we can't get nowhere. A man that's got God's Message, "Let's go forward." All right.
"But take my staff." Elijah touched that staff. Elijah knew that anything he touched was blessed. Why do we lay hands on the sick? Why do we ordain the elders by laying hands on them? Elijah knew what he touched was blessed. I think that's where Paul got taking handkerchief's from his body. See?
Paul knowed that whatever he touched was blessed. If the people want to believe it, they say that you get the same blessing, just the same as he prayed for them and laid hands on them, whatever it was.
And Elijah knew that that staff would be blessed. He said, "Gehazi, put my staff in your hand, hold it before you, and go forward now. And don't check for nothing. Anybody speaks to you; don't speak. You got a commission now. Go take this staff."
That was all right. The handkerchief was all right. But that Shunammite woman, she didn't know whether God was in the staff or not, but she knowed God was in the prophet. She said, "As the Lord..."
He said, "Go on with her now."
She said, "As the Lord liveth, and your soul liveth, I will not leave you." Oh, there you are. "I'm going to stay right here, right by your side, you got me on your hands now, until we know about this."
He said, "Go on with..."
And Gehazi went ahead, so he girded up his loins and started off with her. Here they go. The woman with the prophet, her hearts desire, going on down.
Elijah said, "I don't know. He ain't told me nothing about it. I can't tell you. I will go down there then."
Here come Gehazi back. Said, "Did you lay the staff on him?"
"Was any signs?"
"No life. He's still asleep. He's still dead. He's gone." See? The woman's faith wasn't in that. It was in the prophet. She knowed that... If she'd have believed that God was with the staff, it done the same thing. But she knew God was in His prophet.
So here come Elijah. All the neighbors had gathered at the door, and they were weeping, and screaming, and moaning, and carrying on like that. Old Elijah walked into a bunch like that. Walked in, pulled the door together, shut the door. There laid the little corpse, many, many hours had been dead , probably real late in the evening. Elijah walked up-and-down the room. Oh, my. Hallelujah. Walking up-and-down the room, walked over... He knew God was in him. He laid his body on the baby, put his lips against its lips, his nose against his nose, the forehead against his forehead. He held his body there, not prayer; put his body. He laid there.
After while he felt his flesh was getting warm. Got up. Walked again. Oh, my. Up-and-down the floor, to and fro, a howling outside, and the screaming and carrying on, Elijah walking... Walked back again, throwed his body on top the baby, and the baby sneezed seven times. Picked him up, said, "Call that Shunammite now." There you are.
And no doubt, Martha had been reading that. She knowed if God was in His prophet, surely He was in His Son. Hallelujah. "My brother is dead, but let me get to the Son of God. I will have consolation when I get there." She runs right up
Now, look. Looks like she could've upbraided Him. Looks like she could've scorned Him. Said, "Why didn't You come to my brother? Why didn't You come when we called You? We've left everything to follow You. We left the church. We've lost all of our prestige in the city. We've done everything. And when we sent for You to come to pray for Your own bosom buddy, You refused to do it." Seemed like she had a right to do it. If she would've done that, the story would've never been written.
It's your attitude towards it. Your attitude towards God's Divine gift, will get you just what you ask for. Do you understand? Oh, how I'd like to stop right here, Brother Boze, and punch that for about a half hour, but I can't do it. Your attitude: God can send a gift, and no matter what you... Depends on what attitude you take towards it.
Look at them who smote His face and spit on Him, and everything, was no virtue there. But a woman that believed the Word touched the hem of His garment, was healed. Is that right? All right. It depends on what you think about it. God sends it. It's your attitude towards any Divine gift, determines what you get out of it. So there...
So there… She knew. And she run right up to Him. Look at her. I love this. She run right up, this young beautiful Jewish maiden fell down unto His feet and said, “Lord.” That’s what He was. There’s your title. I believe You’re the Lord. “Lord, if Thou would have been here, my brother would not have died.”
Look at that. All the darkness, all the doubts, all the fears, everything had passed away; she was with Jesus then. She knew if He—if God was in His prophet, God was in His Son. And that was God’s Representative then. Is that right? God has one major representative on the earth at a time. He had one Elijah, and as soon as Elijah was taken, then Elisha come. See? Only one major representative. You know Who His major Representative is today? The Holy Spirit; that’s His Representative.
Now, if you can get to Him this afternoon and feel Him bless you, oh, oh, something’s going to happen. There you are. Soon as you feel Him—feel Him touch you once in your body, and if faith confirm there, “Yes, I believe it.” Something’s going to take place.
She fell down at Jesus’ feet; she said, “Lord, if Thou would’ve been here, my brother would not have died.”
Now, just as the Shunammite was to the prophet, so was Mary to the Son of God. She recognized Him to be the Son of God. That’s what He was. She recognized Him as the Lord. That’s what He was. No matter what the other things was, He was the Son of God.
She said, “If Thou would’ve been here…” If she could only find favor with Him now, she would get what she asked. That’s the reason the Shunammite woman would find favor with Elijah. See? She knew that was God’s representative there, and if she could just find favor with him, that’s why—that’s what the case right then, had to be settled. “Now, if I can just find favor with Jesus, that settles the case.”
Now, this afternoon if we can just find favor with the Holy Ghost, that settles the case. That does it right there: It’s God’s Representative. “Yet a little while and the world see Me no more; yet you’ll see Me. I’ll be with you, even in you.” Find favor with Him, and watch Him call you through the audience tonight with your sickness and whatever it is. Find favor with Him and watch the things take place in the church tonight or even not tonight but right now: right now.
Oh, she got to Him and she said, “If Thou would’ve been here, my brother would have not died.” But look, “My brother’s dead out here, Lord. He’s been dead four days. Skin worms is crawling in and out of his body. Corruption, an awful smell has set in. He’s dead. He stinketh out there in the grave. If You’d have been here, he would not died. But even now, Lord, whatever You ask God, God will do it.”
She had a little feeling down here something was going to happen. Don’t you believe that? “Even now, Lord, whatever You ask God, God will do it.”
Oh, how I wish to God that every cancer-ridden person here, every one with heart trouble, every one with any kind of disease… Maybe you’ve searched through every doctor’s office there is in Chicago nearly. Maybe you been to every clinic, you’ve been everywhere, whatever it is; “But even now, Lord, whatever You ask God, God will do it.” “Even now…”
You say, “Brother Branham, the doctor said I couldn’t live but just a little while longer. But even now, Lord, whatever You ask God, God will do it.” Prayer changes things. Is that right?
Say, “Brother Branham, I can’t walk; they told me I’d never walk no more. But even now, Lord, whatever You ask God, God will do it.” There you are. Look, then something’s got to happen.
See, I look at Jesus. He said, “Thy brother shall rise again.” Oh, my.
She said, “Yea, Lord, he was a good boy, a good fine Jewish boy. He was a good man. He never done wrong. He’s done all things; he believes You, and so forth; I know he’ll raise at the general resurrection.”
Look at Him. The Bible says no beauty we should desire Him, a little frail, stooped over looking Fellow. But he straightened His little Self up and said, “I am the Resurrection and Life.” Hallelujah. He is now. Oh. “I am the Resurrection and Life. He that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. Whosoever liveth and believeth in Me, shall never die. Believeth thou this?”
She said, “Yea, Lord, I believe that You are the Son of God which should come into the world.” Something’s got to happen.
Get God on your mind now. Get settled down. Here you are. She was at the Prophet of all prophets. If the Shunammite woman stood by a prophet which was born here in mortal flesh and so forth, that prophet Elijah, and knew by his signs and wonders and his predictions that he was a prophet; and the Shunammite woman got what she asked for, so could Mary. She come to Him. She called Him “Lord.” She knew who He was. She said, “I believe that Thou art the Son of God that should come into the world.”
There’s a confessor; there’s a believer with a impossibility in her heart for Him to do, but she’s recognizing God’s gift. She’s recognizing God’s Man, His Son; she’s right at the spot. Every one of them cogs are moving right in, like that, to exact place. Something has to take place.
“I believe, though he’s dead, he’s rottening out there in the grave; he’s been dead for four days. I hold nothing against nothing. I don’t even think about it no more. You are the Son of God that was to come into the world, and I believe whatever You ask God, God’s going to do it. Oh, my.
Said, “I am the Resurrection and Life. He that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. Whosoever liveth and believeth in Me shall never die. Believeth thou this?”
She said, “Yes, Lord.”
“Where have you buried him?” Here He goes. Oh. Four days before that that funeral procession, a few little Jews, brokenhearted, crying, Jesus cried as He went down to the grave. Is that right?
Here not long ago, a fine reader out of a certain church come to me, and she said, “Brother Branham, you put too much bragging on Jesus.”
I said, “Brag too much on Him? I can’t say enough about Him.” …?…
She said, “Oh, he was just a man. He was a philosopher.”
I said, “He was God, is Who He was.”
She said, “Oh, no. He wasn’t divine, Brother Branham.” Said, “He wasn’t divine.”
I said, “God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself.”
She said, “Oh, in a manner of his love and so forth, he was God.”
I said, “No, He was Jehovah.” People try to push Him around, saying He’s just good man, an ordinary man. He was the divine One, God manifested in the flesh, seen of angels, preached on, received up into the heavens, setting at the right hand of the Father. Certainly, He was God. He was more than a man. He was a God-man. He was Man in flesh but He was God in Spirit. That’s what He was, God coming down to suffer temptation and martyrdom, to take sins upon Himself, that he’d passed on the human race, bearing our sins Himself.
She said, “I can prove to you by the Bible if you’ll just open up your mind that he was only a man.”
I said, “Do it by the Bible and I’ll believe it.”
She said, “When he went down to that resurrection of Lazarus…” said, “On his road down there, he cried with the rest the people. The Bible said, ‘Jesus wept.’ And that proved that he was a mortal.”
Yes, I said, “He might’ve cried. That’s true. On His road down to meet Lazarus, He was human as far as human is concerned. In His flesh He was human, but is His Spirit He was God.” I said, “He cried. That was a Man crying. He was Man when He was crying, going down to Lazarus’ grave, but when He stood there, and straightened that little frame up, and said, ‘Lazarus, come forth.’ And a man that’d been dead four days come to life again, that was more than a man. That was God speaking through there.” Hallelujah. God was in His Son. That was God speaking through mortal flesh. Corruption knew its Master. Believest thou this?
He was Man when He was up there on that mountain that night, come down and looked all around that little fig tree there and there wasn’t nothing to eat. He was hungry. He was a man when He was hungry. But when He took five biscuits and two fishes and fed five thousand people, that was more than a man; that God in the Man.” Hallelujah.
He was a man when He laid on the back of that little boat that night, when ten thousand devils of the sea swore they would drowned Him. The little old storm come up, and the little boat pitching like a bottle stopper out there on that lake, like that. Devil said, “We’ll drown Him tonight.”
He was so tired; virtue had gone out of Him all day from preaching and healing, till He was so tired the storm didn’t wake Him up. But when the disciples woke Him, He was a man laying there sleeping. When He put His foot upon the brail of the boat, said, “Peace, be stilled,” there that was more than a man. That was God speaking through His Son. Hallelujah. Yes, it was. Believest thou this?
He was a man when He cried up there at Calvary, “My, God, why has Thou forsaken Me?” He died like a man; but on Easter morning He rose, breaking the seals of death, corruption, rising to ascend to the Father above, showing that He was more than a man. He was God in flesh. Believest thou this?
The Bible said Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Believest thou this? A woman with an infirmity of her flesh, with a blood issue for many years, touched the hem of His garment, and her blood issue stanched, stopped immediately. Believest thou this?
Jairus’ daughter was dead. And I can see Him crossing the river, coming up there; He said, “I’ll go up and pray for her.”
And here come a messenger, said, “Your daughter’s already dead; don’t trouble the Master.”
Little Jairus’ heart began to fail. And those dark eyes of Jesus looked around, and said, “Did I not say, ‘Fear not? Thou shall see the glory of God?’” He walked into that death chamber where those people in there, He said, “She’s not dead; she sleepeth.”
Oh, they said, “That fanatic around here…”
He said, “Put them out.” When He put them out of the room, walked over, and He was possessed of the power of the Holy Ghost that could speak in another language. And all these earthly things would fail Him, and He spoke in another language out there, and said, “Tabitha,” that was “Daughter, arise.” And from the spirit land, where a girl had been laying dead and gone, laying on a couch, He spoke a word into spirit land, and the girl that was dead stood on her feet and lived again. Hallelujah. Hallelujah. Believeth thou this?
He’s here today. Believest thou this?
About seven years ago, standing there at Green’s Mill, Indiana, I was out there troubled and bothered by visions and things, that a supernatural power speaking out of bushes, and ministers telling me it was the devil, not to have nothing to do with it. One night there a Light flashed across the floor, and a Man come walking to me with His arms folded, said, “I am sent from the Presence of Almighty God to tell you that you’re to pray for sick people. All these things would happen: you’ll know the secrets of the hearts, and so forth. And if you’ll get the people to believe you and be sincere when you pray, nothing shall stand before your prayer.” Believest thou this?
I believe He’s here right now. I believe that this feeling that’s moving through the church right now like a milky way coming over the building, I believe that’s the same Holy Ghost that fell on the day of Pentecost. Believest thou this?
I believe down in your heart it’s a moving just about to make you explode right there. I believe that’s the Holy Ghost trying to get in this afternoon. Believest thou this? I believe He’ll heal every person here right now. Believest thou this? Let’s raise our hands and give Him praise. Hallelujah, hallelujah.
Lord Jesus, we are…?… We thank Thee for Thy goodness. O God, we believe that You’re here. We believe that You’re making ready a people. Oh, come, Lord Jesus, heal this group of people. Send the Holy Ghost through here. O God, flow like a rushing mighty wind up and down these aisles. Touch every heart, feel the faith; in Jesus Christ’s Name. Hallelujah, Hallelujah…?…