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The Lawless One

John Collins07/02/2013

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Now that the pastors of the cults are seeing the noticeable decrease of their congregations, and are fielding the many calls of questions regarding the many things Branham claimed that have been proven to be false, their sermons have also noticeably changed.

For years, many of us enslaved by the cult of William Branham sat listening to what were called sermons, and those public speeches were in honor and commemoration of a man who we believed to be a prophet of the Lord.  Many of us heard these stories now under question over and over from behind the pulpits, with some strange repetition that we ourselves did not even recognize.

But now, as the congregations are starting to awaken, the sermons have changed quite a bit.  In many sermons, the focal point is no longer William Branham.  The focal point has quickly became the fear that their churches are falling apart, and that fear is increased with vain repetitions of the man and women who left the church in days gone by, and are no longer alive.  Sermons that used to be about one dead guy are now about many dead people. 

It's odd, really.  Before Branham was exposed as a false prophet, very little of the Bible was taught — instead, pastors proclaimed what William Branham SAID about the Bible.  And as many of us have noticed, more often than not, what he said was entirely different than what the Bible actually said. 

But the pastors used to proclaim that the Bible was their absolute, and it lined up perfectly with William Branham's "message." 

William Branham made a few boastful statements, telling others that if any prophecy did not happen like he said, we could post a sign on his back that said, "False Prophet."  Cult pastors have taken this a step further in days gone by, saying that if William Branham was not the "prophet for this day," then we should put a sign on their back "False Teacher."  And rightfully so — if they were retelling false teaching, then that absolutely makes them false teachers.

But now that so many of William Branham's "prophecies" are under question, and now having realized that he never even mentioned the six (or seven) prophecies of 1933 until the 1950's, you won't hear any boasting from the pastors — their faith in what they call "the prophet" has been shaken.

Few people have caught it, but their faith in William Branham is not the only thing that has been shaken.  While telling their congregations for so many years that the Bible was absolute, undeniable truth, they are taking a much, much different approach with their sermons:  the Bible has discrepancies.

I am in amazement by this, because in all of Paul's letters, his instruction to the church was to lift one another up in faith and in love.  How can we be lifted in faith, when the shepherds in places of worship are preaching questions instead of answers? 

One cult pastor from Johnson City, Tennessee has been quoted saying that "There is no proof that God is real."  The same man that preached an entire sermon defending the false prophet — and his entire defense was nothing more than showing his congregation what he called "discrepancies" in the scriptures.  In other words, "The Bible has error, so my 'prophet' is allowed to have error too!"

I am in more amazement that cult followers are swallowing what they are being spoon-fed.  It is as if they don't remember the same pastors telling them that the Word of God was undeniable!

In the new church I attend, the Bible is proclaimed as absolute Truth.  And in our Sunday schools, instead of retelling stories of how great our pastor was several years ago, they examine the scriptures with a fine-toothed comb to prepare the congregation to defend their belief in Christ. 

Picture an army getting ready for battle, and the general giving his advice to the troops:  You are going out to fight a great battle, men!  Good luck, I'm not giving you any weapons!"

That's what cult pastors are doing regarding the Christian faith!  Their weapons given are not weapons to defend the Bible and proclaim Christ risen — their weapons given do nothing more than tell how some dead guy was a good guy when he was not dead.

Let's pretend that Branham was NOT a serial liar, false prophet, and false teacher.  Let's pretend that his ministry DID proclaim the coming Christ, just as John the Baptist did in the days of old.

John the Baptist proclaimed that he must DECREASE so that Christ could INCREASE!  The messenger is not the object of worship — Christ is!

If Branham were REALLY this person the cult pastors proclaim, they would not have looked backwards for all of these years to some dead guy.  They would have looked forward to the Risen Guy!  The One who is coming to catch His Bride away!

There is absolutely no way to prepare the cult followers with the armor that their pastors are denying them in one single post of one single day — they should be getting their preparation every Sunday and Wednesday over the course of several years.  In fact, I'm behind the game, having sit in a "memorial service for a dead guy" for thirty-seven years of my life.

But compare their argument of showing their congregations "Bible discrepancies" with actual Bible history — history in which they have absolutely no understanding.  Branham was just ONE man!  The Bible is FILLED with great men of old.

What if we replaced the Apostle Paul with William Branham.  What if "fake apostle Branham" told the Thessalonians that  he saw a light in the wilderness, and that light was Jesus Christ.  ...and then he told the Colossians that the light was not in the wilderness, but instead in the city of Rome!

You see how silly this is?  Two men may have two different understandings of the stories, but the same man will not tell two different stories of an experience that is so supernatural that not a single person in this WORLD would forget!

Compound that with the history of the scrolls, which very few pastors even understand.  Long before pen and paper, long before the scrolls were even normalized into one single Bible, scribes copied the scrolls by hand for reproduction.  With each copy, a new "family" of Bible began, and those scrolls were copied throughout history.  Some copies were better than others, having little mistakes. 

A common misconception in the cult of William Branham is that "God protected the words."  And I use the word misconception ONLY because the focus is in the wrong place: "the words."

Even the King James Bible had error, and the version they now read from behind their pulpits is not the same as the version in 1611 when it was originally produced. 

God protected His Word, not the human words of language that comprised His Word.  There is enough evidence that the words differ from family of scroll to family of scroll that we can be assured every single hand that touched the Bible was a human hand.

And the Bible that we read is not written from ONE single scroll.  It's written from multiple scrolls.

This method of handing down the Word of God from generation to generation was very prone to error.  And with all of the families of scrolls, the only way to gleam the authentic text is to compare scrolls for common passages.

With the progression of changing text due to either human error, changes in the understanding of the language, or devious minds, finding the authentic text became a challenge.  So "Bible cannons" were formed.

The word cannon meant "something to be measured."  Men spent weeks, months, and years, comparing the text from each of the families of scrolls.  If the text was found to be authentic, it was included in the Bible cannon.

And while many in the cult do not realize it, Martin Luther attempted to remove the books of Hebrews, James, Jude, and Revelation from the cannon.  Even more amazing is that the original King James Version included the Apocrypha — a set of books containing Jewish history between the death of the last prophet and the coming of Jesus Christ.  Had those books still been included in the King James Version, followers would have quickly noticed that many of the prophecies William Branham pointed to his own "age" and his own "ministry" were actually fulfilled after the death of Malachi and before God sent His Son, Jesus Christ.

Through the middle ages, the most common Bible cannon was the Latin Vulgate.  For most Western Christians, this was the only Bible easily accessible.   The writers of this translation had great difficulty in understanding the Hebrew Masoretic text.  The Hebrew language had no vowels — which made it very prone to mistakes. 

In the passage from Exodus in which Moses returns to the people after receiving the commandments for the second time, the word "karan" was mistranslated.  Based on the root "keren", which often means horn, this word was literally translated as "horn".  We now understand that word to be better translated as "shining" or "emitting rays."

It was because of this mistake that Michelangelo's statue of Moses that sits in Rome today contains horns!  Even back then, men and women did not question the translators of scripture — and held the words of text literally as though those words were spoken by God into the translators ear.

The history of the scrolls can be told for several days or weeks before you can have a clear understanding of the Bible that you hold in your hands today.  And the Word of God is clearly inspired and protected by God.  God had his hand in passing His word from generation to generation, down through time, so that it could be preserved for us today.

As many "hands in the pot" as we have throughout history, it's easy to see that if God did not protect His Word, we would have nothing but a complete mess!  And again, this would have been a mess that was created by misunderstanding or misinterpreting the Word of God that was handed down through the ages.

This is the EXACT OPPOSITE of Searching For Vindication finding that William Branham lied about sixteen men falling from the Bridge, lying about denying the Pentecostal religion until God smote his wife and child by the flood, or the many other things that have been uncovered.

You see, when a new scroll is uncovered, it PROOVES God's Word.  As common text is found, it authenticates and "vindicates" what we already know and believe to be God's Truth!

But as each new detail is uncovered about William Branham's life, it only stacks up against him.  The more evidence that is uncovered, the more he sounds like either a charlatan or a delusional man. 

And while these types of scriptures speaking of the "lawless one" are pointed to those who are examining this evidence, we find that they fit like a glove when compared to William Branham's own ministry.  Take 2 Thessalonians 2 for example:

"Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers, not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come.  Let no one deceive you in any way."

It is forgotten today, but many in the cult of William Branham thought that the day of the Lord had come when he was alive.  When he was buried, hundreds travelled to Jeffersonville to see if he would rise from the grave at Easter.  Others looked for the day of the Lord in 1977 — a year that Branham claimed as "divine revelation" to be the end of the world.

None of us searching for Truth have pointed any single person to a false end of the world.  Only Branham.

Paul continues:

"For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God."

This verse is pointed to seekers of Truth because of the word "rebellion," but still not a single person has exalted himself or herself as "god."  None of us are to be worshipped, and we would sit down and have a talk with you if you decided to do so! 

But Branham twisted several scriptures that were supposed to point to Jesus Christ.  He pointed those scriptures to himself and his own "ministry."  Even today, people will claim that Branham is the fulfillment of Luke 17:30 — exalting Branham into the title "Son of Man."  Branham is NOT the Son of Man, and when the Son of Man is revealed to us, He will judge all who believe in any other son of man.

Paul knew that this lawless one was coming, and he warned the people:

Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things?  And you know what is restraining him now so that he may be revealed in his time.  For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way.  And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will kill with the breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by the appearance of his coming.

Pastors will use crazy fear tactics about how members of their cult churches left, and how God smote them to the ground.  But why do they forget that their fearless leader was also smote to the ground, in a far worse disaster?  It's almost as if God's breath blew that other car into William Branham's vehicle!

For years, the rumor was spread that this accident was caused by a drunken driver.  I urge any of you to examine the newspaper article about the death and find this part of the story there.  In fact, if you compare the stories given by Pearry Greene, Billy Paul, and others, you'll quickly notice that NONE of them match!  They do not want you to know that this could have been the Hand of the Lord!

The lawless ones are not those who are pouring into their Bibles, examining history, and testing the prophet as the Bible instructs us to do.  Paul tells us that the lawless one will come with signs and wonders — and I can assure you that none of us have any signs or wonders.  We'd like to take Branham up on his offer to place that sign on his back, but that is a different kind of sign and none of us are willing to go near his rotting corpse.

Listen to this next part by Paul, and compare which sounds more likely:  those who are pouring into their Bibles, or that guy who lied about God speaking through the heavens in front of ten thousand people and five hundred to be baptized.

The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.  Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

Notice that last part?  Because they refused to love truth, God sends them a strong delusion!

Why else can you show the entire logbook from the coast guard, emphatic proof that William Branham's prophecy of the Clark Memorial Bridge was a false sign, and they are unwilling to listen?  They are unwilling to believe in the truth!  Paul says that this is pleasure in unrighteousness! 

Don't be that person taken captive by the arguments of the cult pastors, claiming the Word of God to be false and filled with error.  It has nothing to do with a man who lied to us!  There are hundreds of books and websites you can read, written by REAL Christians, who examine and study the Word of God, and try to help you understand how and why the translation you use may raise questions.

But unlike these cult pastors, they also give the answers to the questions.  You will quickly find that the sermons by the cult pastors give no answers.  Why?  If they give answers to the Bible questions, then they must also give answers to the Branham questions.

And they know that cannot be accomplished.