Video available here: http://youtu.be/AQqEljDDdtg
Lee Strobel is a Christian author, journalist, and pastor
from Arlington Height, Illinois. His
name is recognized by many Christians, even from within the boundaries of the
Branham cult. His book, "Case for
Christ," is one of the books that motivates and rejuvenates the faith of
Christians around the globe.
In "Case for Christ," he describes his journey from atheism
to Christianity, and declares to the world his reason for becoming a
Christian. He also describes some of the
many reasons people avoid Christianity based on his own personal experiences.
When Strobel started his journey, he was ONLY willing to
look at part of the reasoning that
had convinced him there was no God. Of
himself, Strobel says this:
far as I was concerned, the case was closed. There was enough proof for me to
rest easy with the conclusion that the divinity of Jesus was nothing more than
the fanciful invention of superstitious people. Or so I thought. - Lee Strobel
But over time, as he continued to investigate the Bible, the
evidence became overwhelming. And like
any person seeking their salvation should
do, Strobel started with what could not be denied: factual, historical
record. What have we learned from
history about Jesus Christ, and is it accurate?
When I was enslaved in the cult of William Branham, Lee
Strobel was a name I was familiar with, and there was a respectful atmosphere
surrounding the evidence found in the book, "A Case for Christ." Strobel was a hero of the faith; he was a man
who went against all odds to prove Christ and stand on absolute truth that
Jesus is Lord!
And this was always odd to me. If Strobel went so far as to turn his heart
and mind to Christ, why did he not continue all the way into Branham? How could he not have known that William
Branham was the "messenger for the hour," if Branham's ministry was so
I remember those stories about the light that shone from the
heavens, and the voice of God that spoke through the clouds as William Branham
was baptizing the people, and I believed it when Branham told me that all of
the newspapers ran an article about God speaking.
I remember thinking, "How blind can people be? Even the newspapers proclaim that Branham was
sent! Why does nobody know about this
'Seventh Angel Messenger?'"
Having read several times through the historical information
that has now surfaced on the Searching For Vindication website, www.searchingforvindication.com,
I am now starting to realize exactly WHY the name William Branham is unknown to
so many in the Christian faith. What we
believed was not exactly true. Much of it was not true at all.
After their website launched, Christians from around the
world are starting to leave the Branham cult, and are forming private support
groups for those who spent so many years in bondage. I am active in several of these groups, watching
with excitement as each person starts pouring their hearts out and getting back
into the REAL Voice of God — the Bible.
For me, it's like watching a good boxing match with the
underdogs fighting the champion. The
champion may have a big fist that knocks the little guy to the ground, and he
may stand over him pounding his face into the ground. While he is down on the ground taking each
blow, he's not going anywhere. And the
longer he stays there, the more it hurts -- If he lays there long enough, HE'S
NOT getting back up! But if that little
guy can muster enough strength to get back to his feet, he's still in the
match. My favorite match is when the
little guy — the one that everyone is against — overtakes the champion and
claims the title!
Strobel's "Case for Christ" is a good recommendation for
anyone who has been enslaved in the worst cult churches affiliated with the
"Message of the Hour" — the churches that they call "tape only." Those are the churches that have no
scriptural teaching whatsoever, and typically are filled with people who have
no idea what is between the bindings of that shiny leather book they carry with
them. "Case for Christ" will challenge
you, make you want to study the scriptures for yourself, and see for yourself
whether Christ is the Son of God. And if
you dig deep enough, I can assure you that you will come to the exact same conclusion
that Strobel came to: Christ is the Son
of the Living God, and is soon returning to take His Bride to be with Him!
One person in the support groups recently brought up this
subject, and quickly recognized the similarities between Lee Strobel and
Searching For Vindication. And while I
never really stopped to think about it, the similarities are phenomenal! Yet in opposite directions!
Searching For Vindication were not atheists, they were
enslaved by the cult of William Branham.
Like me, they believed every word that was spoon-fed from behind the
pulpits without question. But compare
this to Strobel's teaching and his associates in the atheist crowd. Many atheists use SOME recorded history in
their attempt to prove that Christ is not the Son of God. Once they find that little shred of evidence
against Christ, rather than continuing on to examine ALL of the evidence, they
feel that this little bit of evidence is enough to deny the Christ.
But Searching For Vindication was not satisfied with just a
small portion of evidence that their "prophet" was the "messenger for this
day." They chose to continue on to
examine ALL of the evidence — good or bad.
There are many things that William Branham CLAIMED to have
prophesied, from Marilyn Monroe's death to egg-shaped cars, to the fourth term
of president Franklin Delano Roosevelt, even to the end of the world. Some things that Branham CLAIMED to have
prophesied seems to have came to pass.
Other things — like Armageddon — are easily found in scripture for all
to see. Of course there will be an end
of the world!
But when the atheists told Strobel to stop searching for
Christ and listen to bits and pieces, Strobel continued. When the cult pastors told Searching for
Vindication to stop "searching" and rely on what they DO know, the authors of
the website did not rest until they had all of the facts.
William Branham could have had five hundred prophecies that
came to pass. But if there was one
single prophecy that did not come to pass as God had spoken through him, then
God did not speak. And if God did not
speak, then Branham was a false prophet!
Searching for Vindication chose two well-known events
described in the cult that SHOULD have had a mountain of evidence to
support. With this evidence, anybody who
denied William Branham SHOULD have been satisfied in their hearts and minds
that William Branham was a "vindicated" prophet. They started with Branham's alleged prophecy
that sixteen men fell from the Clark Memorial Bridge, and the Voice of God that
spoke through the heavens to announce the "seventh age messenger."
That voice, remember, was recorded in several
newspapers. It was published and printed
all the way from Jeffersonville, Indiana all the way up into Canada according
to William Branham! It should be easy to
And those sixteen men that fell from the bridge would be
quickly identified — it just so happens that a coast guard station kept daily
logs to record every single event, big or small, that happened during the construction
of the bridge.
But here is where the story SEEMS to have turned from what
happened with Lee Strobel's "Case for Christ."
Strobel was atheist, and in his journey to investigate the truth, he
stumbled into evidence that was solid proof that Jesus Christ was the Son of
Searching For Vindication, on the other hand, stumbled onto
some evidence that was strongly against their research. While the cult pastors told them Branham was
the "vindicated prophet," they suddenly learned that he was not so
vindicated. In fact, he was proven to
have lied about the entire event. Not
just the event described as prophecy when the bridge supposedly fell, but also
the "Voice of God" that spoke through the heavens. The "Voice of God" that was the inspiration
for the name of the cult headquarters.
It seems as though there was no voice.
Without a voice speaking from the heavens, Branham's entire
"1933 commission story" is invalidated.
And with no commission, we have no messenger.
Without sixteen men falling from the bridge, we have no
"vindicated prophecy." And with a single
failed prophecy, we do not have a "vindicated prophet." Instead we have a false prophet.
But even still, Searching for Vindication did not stop
there. Learning from experience, evidence
that does not include ALL of the facts is not evidence at all.
So now, Searching For Vindication is examining the Branham
Tabernacle itself. This is the building
that seemed to have started it all.
The Branham Tabernacle, the scary looking building that sits
on the corner of Eighth Street and Penn Street in Jeffersonville, Indiana, is
the key to this entire cult. It is the
"cornerstone" so to speak.
This is the building where many were supposedly converted to
Christ and led down to the river to be baptized when the faked "commission
story" was given. This was where five
hundred converts were supposed to have been led to Christ, baptized, and all
while ten thousand people were watching from the banks of the river.
But it is really deeper than that. The Branham Tabernacle is the building were
the cult leader, William Marrion Branham was supposed to have secretly hidden
the six (or seven) prophecies of 1933:
And, God in Heaven knows, that lays right there in the corner
of that Tabernacle stone since 1933, wrote on a page of a Bible, laying right
Even though it is obvious that this is just another
fabricated story — the first time William Branham even mentions these
prophecies is the year 1953 — almost a hundred recorded sermons into his
But Searching For Vindication is not stopping with the
failed bridge prophecy. They are not
stopping with the fabricated "commission" story.
They want the facts.
We already have a false prophet.
But do we have a single prophecy?
Was the church even BUILT in 1933?
Both "Searching For Vindication" and Lee Strobel remind me
of the story of Hezekiah in the Bible.
Hezekiah was only twenty-five years old when he began to
reign as king in Judah, and I'm sure that he faced some opposition.
They did not have any false prophets like William Branham to
worship back then — religions dedicated towards worship of something other than
God while seemingly associated with God.
In the days of Hezekiah, the people worshipped the bronze
serpent. Moses had made the serpent, and
that serpent brought "divine healing."
The people of Judah gave offerings to it, just like the people in the
cult of William Branham pay their offerings to Voice of God recordings.
But Hezekiah, though very young, did not listen to the
elders who opposed him by giving a small part of the facts. He stood for Truth, and that Truth was found
in the Word of God. Hezekiah tore down
the bronze serpent. He tore down the
worship of divine healing, just as Searching For Vindication is doing
I have had several writing in to ask us: "Why do you
continue? Why do you keep focusing on
the tearing down of Branham's fictional ministry when I could leave that and
focus only on spreading the teachings from the Word of God?"
This must have been very similar opposition for
Hezekiah. "Why don't you leave the
serpent there and let us worship it?
Just read from the Book of the Law!
It's ok if we worship that snake!
Moses put it there! Don't you
remember Moses — he's the one that spoke with GOD!"
I'm thankful that history has preserved the story of
Hezekiah. It's led to many people like
Searching For Vindication that are tearing down false worship. I'm thankful that the history was preserved
so that Searching For Vindication could help lead others out of the cult and
back towards Christ.
I recently read a summary of the words of Jesus in Matthew
10 as he sent out the twelve apostles.
Unlike the old English words in the King James Version that are so
difficult for many to understand, this is a summary in today's English.
Many in the cult are afraid of this sort of thing, because
they were taught to worship the words — as they are — in the Bible rather than
the meaning behind those words. But this
summary is what we would be hearing if we were standing there in front of Jesus
Christ as he spoke directly to the twelve.
I thought it would be fitting to end with that summary. I urge you to review Matthew 10 for
yourselves. Be like Lee Strobel and "Searching
For Vindication." Search these things
out personally — this is a personal relationship with Christ, not some boring
history lesson in grade school! This is
your life! This book, the Bible, should
be the air you breathe, your entire WORLD!
It is the Word of God! The REAL
Voice of God, and it's speaking to YOU!
Here is the summary, and you can find it in the version of
the Bible with the name that should be very fitting: "The Message."
naÃ¯ve. Some people will impugn your motives, others will smear your
reputationâ€”just because you believe in me. Don't be upset when they haul you
before the civil authorities. Without knowing it, they've done youâ€”and meâ€”a
favor, given you a platform for preaching the kingdom news! And don't worry
about what you'll say or how you'll say it. The right words will be there; the
Spirit of your Father will supply the words."
realize it is the living God you are presenting and not some idol that makes
them feel good, they are going to turn on you, even people in your own family.
There is a great irony here: proclaiming so much love, experiencing so much
hate! But don't quit. Don't cave in. It is all well worth it in the end. It is
not success you are after in such times but survival. Be survivors!"
God bless you!