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Back To The Bible

 

When you finally start to realize that the bible you've been taught is not quite similar to the Bible that you hold in your hands, it's time to get back to the basics. The only way to determine how much of Branham's teachings were scriptural and how many were inventions of the minds false teachers is to examine the Book itself — start to finish.

 

There's just one problem: Many in the following of William Branham are unfamiliar with reading their Bibles. They've been trained to focus on single sentences twisted into entire doctrines without reading the scripture in its context. They have forgotten the real Word of God.

 

The Gospel

 

The word "Gospel" means "Good News." To a Christian, the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the greatest news that can be given, news that Christ has freed the world from sin and death.

 

Sadly, however, many have long forgotten what this "Good News" is all about. When asked, many in the following of William Branham will give an answer of "power," or "healing," a description that represents the power of God without any indication of the message that is to be spread with the Good News that is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

 

When the Mosaic Law was given, it was a two-part contract between man and God. There were over three hundred blessings if the Children of Israel kept the laws given to Moses by God, and there were over three hundred curses if they failed to keep the Law. From famine and drought to captivity and desolation, the curse of the law was severe. At the same time, the Gentile nations were cursed. God chose Israel as His children, and the idolatrous nations that rose against Israel were punished with Israel's favor.

 

In Galatians 3, Paul compares the Mosaic Law to a child under instruction of a tutor, and describes the Law itself as a curse. Once the curse was lifted, Paul tells the Galatians that there is no longer a separation between Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or female.

 

Throughout his letters, the Apostle Paul calls the Law a "Law of sin and death," one that brings condemnation rather than salvation. This condemnation was upon the head of Israel, condemnation spoken directly by God through His prophets in the Old Testament. Israel had broken the Law, abandoned it, and brought the curses of the Law upon themselves. Without a Redeemer to save them, Israel deserved death.

 

To the early Jewish Christians, the Gospel had special meaning. Christ had set them free! They were no longer bound by the Law, and they were no longer living under the curse of the Law. Though they deserved death and eternal separation, Jesus Christ had came as their Kinsman Redeemer. He died in their place, paying the final penalty of the curse. His death brought new life, life without the curse of the Law, and they had done nothing to deserve it. It was given to them as a Gift, the greatest Gift the world had ever known. God had sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, as their Kinsman Redeemer. God's only Son sacrificed His own life so that their lives could be saved, and so that they might have a place in the Kingdom of Heaven.

 

To the early Gentile Christians, the Gospel also had special meaning. Though they were not bound by the Law, and were not under the curse of the Law, they had not been considered God's children. God had favored Israel as His people, but now the Gentile nations were adopted as children of the King.

 

This gift of life was given without any merit. There was nothing that could be done to earn this Gift. There was nothing mankind could do to save himself.

 

Christ, God's only Son, suffered and died on the cross for the sins of the world. He died and rose again, conquering death, hell, and the grave. Because He lives, we are given the gift of eternal life, and there is only one requirement: faith in Jesus Christ.

 

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Ephesians 2:8-9

 

This is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is the Bible. Without the early books of the Bible, we would never fully understand the Grace and Love of the Heavenly Father to His Children before their punishment for failure to keep the Law. Before there was Law, there was Grace, and eternal covenants showing God's faithfulness.

 

Without the books of the prophets, we would never fully understand the necessity of a Savior. Though mankind tried to save themselves by their own actions, the Old Testament teaches us that we cannot save ourselves. We need a Savior. We need God.

 

Paul proclaimed this Gospel, and left nothing hidden in mystery. 2 Corinthians 1 tells us that nothing is written in-between the lines, and there is nothing we can't understand. It is the simple Gospel of Jesus Christ.

 

Through the New Testament, we find many warnings of men that will come to spread false teaching. Paul condemned anyone who spread a different gospel — telling the people to keep promoting the Gospel, the Good News that he was also spreading.

 

But William Branham promoted a different gospel. Like the Children of Israel abandoning and forgetting the Mosaic Law in the Old Testament, many in the following of William Branham has abandoned and forgotten the Gospel that Paul spread. It is quickly replaced with the gospel that Branham promoted.

 

Branham's gospel contained a fictional man that spent most of his time in the work of "divine healing." Often, Branham would claim that "85% of the ministry of Jesus Christ was on divine healing." Branham often referred to this as the "Gospel of divine healing."

 

The Jesus in Branham's version was not the eternal Son of God that is described in the first chapter of the Gospel according to John. Branham's version included a man, born by virgin birth but without the status of "God." Branham's Jesus did not become a god until his baptism by John the Baptist. Because this version of Jesus had a beginning, Branham explained that Jesus was not the Eternal Son of God.

 

Though he claimed to have disagreed with the Oneness Pentecostal godhead, Branham promoted the Jehovah's Witness version of Christ that was "Jehovah of the Old Testament," which Branham claimed to be Jesus as taught by Charles Taze Russell.

 

Similar to the Islamic version of Christ, Branham taught his followers to believe that Jesus was required to have a vision before performing any miracle. Though he promoted the idea that Jesus was also Jehovah, Branham would often explain that Christ was not the Father. Taking this out to conclusion, we find a hierarchy of gods in Branham's teaching — a Father who sent visions to a Son, and a Son whose hands were tied until the vision came.

 

In Branham's gospel, this power did not remain with Christ. In several sermons describing the scene during Christ's prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, Branham would describe how the "spirit of god" abandoned Jesus in the Garden. Rather than the Son of God suffering on the cross for our sins, Branham's version of the gospel described a man, abandoned by the Father, crucified on Calvary's hill.

 

The writers of the New Testament do not show patience for men who spread different versions of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Galatians 1:8 describe them as accursed.

 

"But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed."

Galatians 1:8

 

Branham's explanation of the reason Jesus offered Himself as a sacrifice? So that a future 'prophet' could finish the incomplete work:

 

Now He sanctified, with His Spirit and Blood, a Church, that He might make every promise in this last day be revealed. Now, see, He could go back and pick up what these other fellows has left off here, in the last days, and by His Holy Spirit reveal all the mystery of the Seven Seals. See, He is expressing Himself. That's His purpose. That's why He died.

63-0728 CHRIST.IS.THE.MYSTERY.OF.GOD.REVEALED

 

The Achievement Of The Holy Spirit

 

When the Azusa Street Revival broke out, many were displaying gifts that they believed to be directly from God. Taking the prophecy from Joel describing the fire that fell at Pentecost, this new breed of Christians decided to expand upon their teaching regarding these gifts, and replace Paul's description of the fruits of the Spirit with a new doctrine: "Evidence of the Holy Ghost."

 

The early Pentecostals commonly referred to the Gift of Tongues as evidence of the Holy Spirit, but as time went on and fewer people were given this gift, other spiritual gifts were included in this doctrine of "evidence."

 

The most common "evidence" referred to by the Pentecostal faith include not only the gift of tongues, but also serpent handling and the gift of healing. This doctrine is taken from the latter portion of the sixteenth chapter of the Gospel according to Mark. Though the earlier manuscripts of the Bible did not include this text, the Pentecostal faith decided to build their foundation upon these words:

 

And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover."

Mark 16:17-18

 

Over time, the Gift that was freely given to God's children became more of an achievement. Those who were not blessed with the spiritual gifts counted as "evidence" were questioned in their faith. Many were instructed to continue seeking the Holy Spirit until they were able to achieve their gift.

 

The following of William Branham refer to Branham's claim to heal as evidence of the Holy Spirit in their movement. Regardless of how strongly the teachings of William Branham differ from the scriptures, this "evidence" of Branham's achievement takes precedence over the conflict in teaching, and some choose Branham over the Bible in these instances because of this achievement.

 

But as a majority, most of the followers of William Branham do not display the gift of healing that they consider to be evidence of the Holy Spirit — both during Branham's ministry and long after his death. Because of this, and because of Branham's Pentecostal background, many question whether or not God has given this Gift to them. While most Christians would see this as a disturbing problem, many in the following of William Branham do not see this as an issue. Branham lessoned the importance of the Holy Spirit in the latter part of his ministry, claiming that one could easily "grieve away" the Holy Spirit, and that one could have the Holy Spirit every day in his or her lives and still be lost and bound for hell.

 

In the earlier part of his ministry, William Branham promoted Paul's description of the fruits of the spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control) as what Christians should look for as evidence of the Holy Spirit. Over time, his doctrine changed. Basing his experience upon the Pentecostal "gifts," Branham claimed to have noticed Christian Science displaying the same Christian love Paul described in Galatians 5, but denied their having the Holy Spirit because they did not live the lifestyle promoted by the Pentecostal faith.

 

Towards the latter part of his ministry, Branham promoted the idea that accepting the "messenger" or the "message" for your "hour" [referring to himself] was the evidence of the Holy Spirit.

 

But this is not the same Holy Spirit described in the Bible. While William Branham claimed that we could "grieve away" the Holy Spirit, God tells us that He will never leave us nor forsake us. Though our sins may grieve the Holy Spirit, the Bible says that we are sealed until the day of our redemption, or salvation.

 

Jesus and the Apostles describe the Holy Spirit is a Gift. It is not a gift that might be merited by our actions, and there is nothing we can do to conjure up this spirit as we find with elemental spirits of the world. The Holy Spirit is a Gift, sent from the Father after Jesus Christ ascended to the Throne. It is a Gift freely given, by unmerited favor between God and man.

 

Branham was correct in the early stages of his ministry; the fruits of the Spirit are founded in perfect love. And that perfect love flows from us by the Spirit that is within us.

 

Divorce Your Wives

 

Many in the following of William Branham hold all statements spoken by Branham and ending with the words "Thus Saith The Lord" in great esteem. To some, those statements take greater importance than scripture, and if any conflict is found between Branham's words and the words of Jesus Christ, the words of Branham stand.

 

One such example is that of Branham's claim that God spoke through his mouth to tell his followers to divorce their wives if they cut their hair. According to Branham, the Lord used his voice to tell the world that a husband should put his wife away should scissors touch their long, flowing hair.

 

I was speaking this morning of this woman — immoral woman, washing Jesus' dirty feet, wiping them with her hair. Some of our Pentecostal sisters have to stand on their head to get enough hair to wash the feet. Cut it all off. See? That's right. It used to be wrong for you to do it. It's still wrong for you to do it. The Bible plainly teaches, if a woman cuts her hair, her husband has a right to divorce her, put her away. Said if she cuts her hair, she dishonors her head, her husband. And a dishonorable woman should not be lived with. I better shut up now. I'll get you preachers right here... I'm only telling you the truth. You're going to face me with it at the day of judgment. That's THUS SAITH THE LORD, in His Word. A lady said, "They don't... All they make is these Hollywood, sexy-looking dresses." I said, "They still have sewing machines and goods." Don't — don't try to get around that. No, sir.

61-0520 FROM.THAT.TIME

 

There is just one problem. This does not match the words of Christ, the Son of the Living God. If Branham were truthful, and God was speaking through his lips, then we would be serving a God that gives conflicting statements.

 

In Matthew 19, Jesus tells us that there is only one sin worthy of putting away your spouse, and that sin has nothing to do with the hair on their head. Jesus tells us that fornication was the only reason to put away your wife, and should one do so without reasons of fornication, they were committing adultery:

 

And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

Matthew 19:9

 

Some of the followers discredit this statement, though Branham claimed to have been speaking the direct Word from God. Those familiar with the events surrounding the second marriage of Branham's son, Billy Paul Branham, claim that until Branham preached the sermon entitled "Marriage and Divorce" in 1965, neither Branham nor the people had any knowledge of the scriptural teachings involving divorce and remarriage.

 

Ironically, William Branham's siblings also did not seem to have this knowledge; William Branham performed the wedding ceremonies for the many marriages of his brothers to their many wives.

 

Pretending To Be God

 

Throughout his recorded sermons, William Branham promoted himself and his ministry as the fulfillment of Luke 17:30. In several of the churches in the current following, you will find many references to this verse of scripture on printed material and sermons describing the man, William Branham.

 

While most Christians recognize the title, "Son of Man," as a reference to Christ, Branham taught that this title was for a coming prophet — not the Messiah that came to deliver the world from sin. This coming prophet, according to William Branham, would be the future return of Elijah, which Branham claimed was described in Malachi 4. Branham taught that this "Elijah" would be more than a man: He would be God in human flesh.

 

Luke 17:30, when read in context, is describing the return of Christ:

 

"And he said to the disciples, The days are coming when you will desire to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see it. And they will say to you, 'Look, there!' or 'Look, here!' Do not go out or follow them. For as the lightning flashes and lights up the sky from one side to the other, so will the Son of Man be in his day. But first he must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation. Just as it was in the days of Noah, so will it be in the days of the Son of Man. They were eating and drinking and marrying and being given in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. Likewise, just as it was in the days of Lot — they were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building, but on the day when Lot went out from Sodom, fire and sulfur rained from heaven and destroyed them all — so will it be on the day when the Son of Man is revealed. On that day, let the one who is on the housetop, with his goods in the house, not come down to take them away, and likewise let the one who is in the field not turn back. Remember Lot's wife. Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life will keep it. I tell you, in that night there will be two in one bed. One will be taken and the other left. There will be two women grinding together. One will be taken and the other left.' And they said to him, 'Where, Lord?' He said to them, 'Where the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.'

 

According to the belief system promoted by William Branham, this passage from Luke is describing the revealing of a prophet, one often described in parallel with himself. While Branham claimed the title "Son of Man" in the verse from Luke 17, the scriptures use this title over eighty times in the New Testament to apply to Jesus Christ. Often, Branham made comparisons between his healing ministry and the "divine healing ministry of Jesus Christ, " which Branham claimed to be the majority of Jesus' "ministry." At one point in time, Branham even pretended that God was speaking through his own lips, though a slip of the tongue made it evident that it was his own stuttering voice instead of the Voice of God:

 

I'm the Lord that raised up Christ from the grave.

I'm the One that sent the Holy Ghost.

I'm the One that give the promise.

Brother Branham has nothing to do in this.

I have — He's surrendered his life to Me.

I'm using his Spirit;

I'm talking through his lips.

That's Me; I'm the Lord.

59-0410 Looking At the Unseen

 

The climax of this doctrine occurred towards the end of his life, less than a month before God removed Branham from his ministry. Having promoted himself as the fulfillment of Luke 17:30, as well as the return of Elijah, William Branham started to claim that this new "Elijah" was not a man — he was God:

 

Now, we've had Elijahs, and Elijahs' coats, and Elijahs' mantles, and Elijahs' everything. But the Elijah of this day is the Lord Jesus Christ. He is to come according to Matthew the seventeen-... Luke 17:30, says the Son of man is to reveal Himself among His people. Not a man, God!

65-1127B TRYING.TO.DO.GOD.A.SERVICE.WITHOUT.IT.BEING.GOD'S.WILL

 

King James Only

 

One of the myths that have arisen after the death of William Marrion Branham is that the King James Version is the only accurate version of the Bible, and that William Branham himself only supported the KJV. Branham studied the works of several men, including Jehovah's Witness founder Charles Taze Russell, Zion City founder John Alexander Dowie, and more. In fact, an alternate version of the Bible was promoted throughout his ministry.

 

Let us read both the King James Version and the translation by Dr. Lamsa. To our gratification we find the words in both amazingly the same so that there is no difference actually in content or doctrine.

Branham: Church Age Book

 

Followers of William Branham also do not realize that William Branham was not of the King James Only opinion, and that a several of his teachings came from a Gnostic version of the Bible — mistranslations by a heretical teacher of the Bible. George Lamsa denied the deity of Christ, and for that reason, most Christians do not use his bible translation.

 

While he strongly opposed and condemned the Catholic Church, Branham mentioned studying the Vatican Translation. Along with the Vatican Translation, Branham used the Diaglott (Jehovah's Witness Translation Tool), as well as the Moffatt and Lamsa translation.

 

I was reading and teaching in my church sometime ago upon Pentecost, in a little revival I had. Now, I've got an old Emphatic Diaglott of the original Greek translation, and it's the one — most outstanding things. I'd advise it to any of the clergymen.

60-0304 THIRSTING.FOR.LIFE

 

Many in the following of William Branham use the King James Version under false pretenses that it is the same version originally translated by King James. Though many claim that the King James Version has been unaltered, and is "more accurate" than the newer translations, it is vastly different than the 1611 version of the King James Bible. The original translation contained the Apocrypha, a set of books later removed for questionable authenticity. At the same time, many of the mistakes were corrected. The King James Version we have today is the result of a refinement process that continued on into the newer translations.

 

In the preface of the 1611 translation, the King James translators admitted they did not have a full understanding of the intricacies of the language. As humans, we are limited to our current understanding, and that understanding was limited during the time of the translation.

 

While there is nothing wrong with reading the Elizabethan English of the King James Version, it is a mistake to falsely assume that the older translation is more accurate than the new translations. The early translators were also limited in the number of scrolls available, and those scrolls did not fully match. With the additional thousands of scrolls unearthed, the newer translations have a better understanding of which scriptures were included in the original Greek and Hebrew text, and which verses were added later by Gnostic influence.

 

Jesus said, "Search the scriptures," which would be those original translations — not the altered versions. He did not instruct us to "search the older translations of the scriptures that admittedly had error."

 

Lamsa Theology

 

Note some of the differences between the King James Version and Lamsa:

 

Mathew 24:7

 

King James Bible: Jesus says: "My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?"

Lamsa Bible: Jesus says: "My God, My God, for this I was spared [kept in some versions]!"

 

Ephesians 6:12

 

King James Bible: For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Lamsa Bible: "For your conflict is not only with flesh and blood, but also with the angels, and with powers, with the rulers of this world of darkness, and with the evil spirits under the heaven".

 

 

Mathew 19:24

 

King James Version Bible "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle..."

 

Lamsa Bible: "It is easier for a rope to go through the eye of a needle"

 

 

Luke 14:25 NIV: "If any one comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters, yes even his own life, he can not be My disciple".

 

Lamsa Bible: "He who comes to Me and does not put aside his father and his mother and his brothers and his sisters and his wife and his children and even his own life can not be a disciple to me".

 

The most disturbing thing about the Lamsa Bible is that George Lamsa allows his theology and opinions to influence his translation. For example, he does not believe that people live after death, so he inserts the word "death" in places the original writer used "sleep" (1 Cor. 15:6,18,20).

 

Lamsa denied the deity of Christ:

 

Hebrews 7:3

 

King James Bible: Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually.

 

Lamsa Bible: Neither his father or mother is recorded in the genealogies; and neither the beginning of his days nor the end of his life; but, like the Son of God, his priesthood abides forever.

 

Temporary Hell

 

William Branham promoted an idea found in Charles Taze Russell's "Jehovah of the Watchtower (page 24)," concerning the idea of a temporary punishment — one of the ideas from Russell's "cardinal doctrines of the Bible" that caused many to label him as a heretic. According to Russell, scriptures describing an "everlasting" or "eternal" hell were incorrect, and he challenged orthodox Christianity.

 

I believe that this doctrine of eternal hell is a lie against man — is a lie against God, and sooner than preach it, I would let my tongue rot in my mouth.

Russell, 1886, BABYLON BEFORE THE GREAT COURT.

 

As to the atrocious dogma of an eternal hell of inconceivable torment, does our "sensitive modern philosophy" imagine that it has outgrown the Scriptures?

Russell, 1891, "Watchman, What of the Night?"

 

 

There are many verses that describe the "eternal fire," though the King James translation sometimes uses the word "everlasting." Here are three examples:

 

Matthew 18:8:

And if your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life crippled or lame than with two hands or two feet to be thrown into the eternal fire.

 

Matthew 25:41:

"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

 

Jude 1:7:

just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire.

 

The Greek word "aionion" is used in the original translation for what we read here as "eternal." (Strongs 166). Ironically, it is the same word used for "eternal life." (http://biblehub.com/greek/aio_nion_166.htm) So if we follow Branham's teaching out to conclusion, by denying an eternal fire, he was also denying eternal life. This word is one and the same.

 

Here are three examples of the same word being used to describe eternal life:

 

Matthew 19:29 Adj-AFS

NAS: and will inherit eternal life.

KJV: and shall inherit everlasting life.

INT: and life eternal will inherit

 

Matthew 25:46 Adj-AFS

NAS: but the righteous into eternal life.

KJV: into life eternal.

INT: into life eternal

Mark 10:17 Adj-AFS

 

NAS: shall I do to inherit eternal life?

KJV: that I may inherit eternal life?

INT: that life eternal I might inherit

 

The Evening Light

 

There were many titles William Branham chose from scripture to apply to himself and his ministry, indexes from verses in prophetic scripture that Branham taught was being fulfilled before the eyes of his congregation. One of those verses applied as a title is Zechariah 14:7:

 

And there shall be a unique day, which is known to the Lord, neither day nor night, but at evening time there shall be light.

 

 

According to William Branham, this statement was proclaiming the end-time messenger, and his "message" was the "evening light" to the world before the coming day of destruction. Taking the prophecy from Joel describing the "former and latter rain," Branham claimed that this evening light was associated with the latter, while the "morning light" was the former.

 

"The evening Lights," the Bible said, "would shine in the last days." The evening Light is the same Light in the West, that was the same Light that was in the East. And the same Light that shined in the East, that brought forth the first Church that the Romans cut down by their — their pagan worship and so forth, in the evening Light is the same Light. Now notice, the same Light! And what's the evening Light come out for? What is the evening Light for? To restore. Whew! You get it? [Congregation says, "Amen." — Ed.] The evening Light is for the same purpose the morning Light was for, to restore what was cut down by the Dark Ages, through Rome. God is going to restore, by shining forth the evening Light (what?), restore the whole Word of God again, the full manifestation of Christ in His Church. Everything that He did, just exactly the way He did, it would be again in the evening Light. See what I mean? Oh, isn't that wonderful? ["Amen."] And to know we're living right here to see It now, the evening Light, exactly according to prophecy. The evening Light come out to restore what? To restore what the bugs had eat up.

62-0422 THE.RESTORATION.OF.THE.BRIDE.TREE

 

 

There are many scriptures describing this light, the "Day of the Lord" that comes before this light, and the events that come after the light has shone. When you study the sermons of William Branham, you will quickly notice that all of those specific verses are being applied to his "message" or his ministry.

 

The prophecy in Zechariah is describing the coming Day of the Lord, specifically a terrible event that is in the future for the Jews in Jerusalem. It comes towards the end of the scroll, which originally did not contain any chapters, verses, or lines. The scroll itself contained several prophecies, each prophecy given from the Lord describing the reason for the prophecy and the people to which it was given. Chapter 14 is a continuation of the Word that came as described in chapter 12.

 

The oracle of the word of the Lord concerning Israel: Thus declares the Lord, who stretched out the heavens and founded the earth and formed the spirit of man within him: "Behold, I am about to make Jerusalem a cup of staggering to all the surrounding peoples. The siege of Jerusalem will also be against Judah. On that day I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples. All who lift it will surely hurt themselves. And all the nations of the earth will gather against it. On that day, declares the Lord, I will strike every horse with panic, and its rider with madness. But for the sake of the house of Judah I will keep my eyes open, when I strike every horse of the peoples with blindness. Then the clans of Judah shall say to themselves, 'The inhabitants of Jerusalem have strength through the Lord of hosts, their God.'

Zechariah 12:1-5

 

Throughout the context of this prophecy, the Word includes the phrase "on that day," describing the coming Day of the Lord. In each section of the prophecy, the focal point is the coming Messiah and his work on the cross. The greatest Gift was about to be given to the world, and that gift was a savior whose side would be pierced:

 

And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy, so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn.

Zechariah 12:10

 

Continuing into the 13th chapter, God describes how the day of the prophets will end, just as described in Luke 16:16:

 

And also I will remove from the land the prophets and the spirit of uncleanness. And if anyone again prophesies, his father and mother who bore him will say to him, 'You shall not live, for you speak lies in the name of the Lord.' And his father and mother who bore him shall pierce him through when he prophesies.

Zechariah 13:2

 

"The Law and the Prophets were until John; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is preached, and everyone forces his way into it."

Luke 16:16

 

Immediately after describing an end to the prophets, God describes how the Good Shepherd will be struck, and the sheep scattered. Again, all of this is to happen "on that day," the Day of the Lord:

 

"Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, against the man who stands next to me," declares the Lord of hosts. "Strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered; I will turn my hand against the little ones.

Zechariah 13:7

 

Zechariah 14, the chapter containing the title that William Branham applied to himself and his ministry, contains much more description regarding the "evening light" than you will find described in the sermons that make use of that title. The chapter begins by describing the Roman invasion of Jerusalem, and all of the events that will take place before the coming Day of the Lord:

 

Behold, a day is coming for the Lord, when the spoil taken from you will be divided in your midst. For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city shall be taken and the houses plundered and the women raped. Half of the city shall go out into exile, but the rest of the people shall not be cut off from the city.

Zechariah 14:1-2

 

While many of the "evening light messengers" that have risen through the years to form groups of separation apply this "Day of the Lord" and the "Evening Light" to their own following, the verse immediately before Zechariah 14:7 describes the settings to identify this day. It would seem from the prophecy given that this was a day in time rather than an "age," "dispensation," or even time period. Zechariah 6 says, "On that day there shall be no light, cold, or frost."

 

But the interesting part of this prophecy when compared to the statements given by William Branham are found immediately after the verse describing the Evening Light — statements that are seemingly overlooked by most of the following.

 

If one attempts to apply the single verse to William Branham, then they are faced with a series of questions that are very difficult to describe anything other than the day when Christ ascended to the Throne.

 

·      Has living waters flowed from Jerusalem since William Branham's "message" went forth?

·      Has the temperature remained cold in the summer, as it is in winter?

·      Was the Lord made King on the day William Branham's message went forth? Is that the day the Lord became One and His Name became One?

·      Have the environmental conditions of the land surrounding Jerusalem changed because of a man in Jeffersonville, Indiana?

·      Is Jerusalem now dwelling in security?

·      Do we see the flesh of those who rage war against Jerusalem rotting and falling from their bodies? Their eyes falling from their sockets or their tongues rotting in their mouths?

·      Do we see plagues striking the livestock, from the horses, mules, camels, donkeys, and any other beast in the camp?

·      Do nations present themself Holy on the day of the Feast of Booths?

·      Do those who refuse live in drought and famine?

·      Did William Branham cleanse the temple of commerce? Or was it Christ who overturned the tables of the money changes?

 

All of these things are proclaimed in the prophecy of Zechariah, concerning the coming Day of the Lord. The evening light was not the focus of the prophecy — most Christians would agree that the greatest event described in this Word from the Lord was the Day when the Lord would be One and His Name One. The Day Christianity was born!