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Eliminate Conflicting History: Congressman Upshaw

John Collins5/5/2012 10:31:00 AM
[There is a significant difference] between Upshaw's version and WMB's. Upshaw's testimony is not complicated. He prayed and his wife encouraged him to step out in faith, that was his touchstone, Upshaw said. WMB never prayed nor spoke with him. There was no mention of any vision WMB had regarding him. WMB was being carried out of the meeting, when WMB told LeRoy Kopp to say, "The Congressman is healed." Afterwards, LeRoy Kopp told Mr. Upshaw what WMB had told him to say. Hearing that, Wm. Upshaw stepped out in faith, and received his healing and walked without crutches. About six months later WMB stated that Upshaw was healed without being touched,3 right after The Voice of Healing released Upshaw's testimony. Within days WMB's embellishments started. He added that the Holy Spirit came down and told him about Upshaw's condition and said he was healed.4 The next day WMB added that Upshaw sat in meetings with Billy Sunday, Paul Rader and B. E. Rediger, whereas Upshaw mentioned a completely different trio.5 On Wednesday, May 9, 1951, Wm. Upshaw said the following in WMB's service, "...I'm eighty-four years young, speak three and four times a day, preach the Gospel of the Christ Who saved me, stood by me on bed seven years, and made me happy, and then took me off of the crutches that I have used for fifty-nine years and now, glory to God I'm walking."6 In July, WMB related more of his "vision" of how he saw a young man fall.7 Here is where WMB really started to add to the story:

And so they wheeled him up, his wife did. He said, 'Young man, how'd you ever know me?'...Said, 'I've been prayed for, since I was a little boy, but I always believed that God would heal me 'cause I took the right stand in the time of prohibition. I, when liquor was going to be brought in, I was called one of the dry bones.' He said, 'I lost the president of the United States because of my stand.' I said, 'That's a gallant thing, sir.' I said, 'May the Lord bless you.' I said, "All right, bring your first patient here, the first person who's to come up.' When it did, something happened to the lady, and It told her about it. And I turned, to look again. And I seen that Congressman with a pin-striped suit on, a red necktie, going down, bowing hisself like this, to the people, just walking right across the people. I said, 'Congressman, Jesus Christ has honored you. You're eighty-six years old now, but God has honored you'...I said, 'Look like He'd a healed you then, but He has healed now.' He said, 'Do you mean I'm healed now?' I said, "THUS SAITH THE LORD.' I said, "Have you got a pin-striped suit?' He--he was wearing a dark suit, with a red tie. I said, 'You got a pin-striped suit?' Said, 'Yes, sir, just bought one the other day.' I said, 'Rise up. Jesus Christ makes you whole.'8


WMB claims that he was preaching and saw a vision of Congressman Upshaw. The 'vision' is told in full during other sermons, clearly laying out the situation: WMB preaching, Upshaw in the meeting, a vision strikes WMB, he goes to the congressman, and then WMB finds out who the congressman is.

It differs from Upshaw's own testimony, however. WMB had exhausted and was being carried out. His first retelling of the story includes no vision, but over time the story grows.
I walked into that Branham-Baxter meeting in Calvary Temple, Los Angeles, in February, 1951,...on my crutches that had been my "buddies" helpful comrades for 59 of my 66 years as a cripple... 7 of those years having been spent in bed...We knew "Billy" Branham would be great but we were not prepared for Baxter, who is an imperative John the Baptist, preparing the way for Branham. I sat entranced, still praying for "appropriating faith," but holden somehow to that contact... and that contract with the Lord 60 odd years ago. Others were healed all around me. Then Brother Branham, exhausted, was carried from the platform. Angels were hovering near! I knew my blessed wife and her "prayer warriors" were wrapping me in prayer. I remembered how she said, "When you are trying to lead a sinner to accept Christ, you say: "Accept...confess Christ and step out- He will do the rest and bring the feeling.'" "It was the touchstone. Brother LeRoy Kopp, Calvary's Temple golden hearted pastor, came back to the pulpit and said: "Brother Branham says, 'The congressman is healed'." My heart leaped. I said in my battling soul, "Brother Branham knows the mind of God....I will step out and accept the Lord as my healer. "I laid aside my crutches and started toward the startled LeRoy Kopp and my happy, shouting wife...and he bottom of Heaven fell out...My crutches are still on the Calvary temple pulpit, and I am "Happy on the way...Leaning on the Everlasting Arms." Praise God!
William David Upshaw. 2524, 24th Street, Santa Monica, Calif.

On April 09, 1951, WMB stated Upshaw lived for many years afterwards, though he actually died within 23 months of his healing, or on Nov. 21, 1952

It is interesting that the 'organization' has removed the questionable parts from this testimony on their website: