Site Search:


The Failed Prophecy of Judgment

John Collins09/12/2013

Video available here:

At 5:36 PM on March 27, 1964, a megathrust earthquake ripped through south-central Alaska causing destruction and tsunamis resulting in 143 deaths.  This earthquake, lasting almost three minutes, was the most powerful earthquake recorded in North American history, and the second most powerful that has ever been measured by the seismograph.  At 9.2, it is the number two largest earthquake in recorded history.

This natural disaster brought worldwide attention.  And with widespread attention, it attracted the spiritualists and doomsday prophets.  Just as we see today with Pat Roberson and his use of fear to gain support during the 2010 earthquake in Haiti or the hurricane that struck New Orleans, we find devious minds preying on the weakness of the human heart were alive and well in 1964.

But one spiritual leader, William Branham, turned this catastrophic event into a prophecy.  Not one that came to pass, however.  Even though this was “prophesied” after the event happened, we find after examining the prophecy that this was indeed another failed prophecy in the long line of failures for the cult leader.

The first time this earthquake is mentioned on recorded tape is in April 1, 1964, only days after the event.  But though this alleged prophecy was given after the event, no mention of prophecy was given.  The earthquake was used as a tool in the sermon, used as a fear tactic to instill “godly fear” into the hearts of men:

“Now we see things happening like’s been happening in the world the last few days.

For instance, the great earthquake in Alaska. Never has been an earthquake like that, in all the world. Did you notice? It come on Good Friday. You know, the last time the world was shaken was on Good Friday, too, when our Master died, and it shook the whole world. And remember, it might be the sign of Him returning. He said, that, "There'd be earthquakes in divers places." Today we got another one in California, and they're just appearing everywhere, light earthquakes. We notice, even the Capitol building has moved out of its place, and moved back. And--and down here in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, there's a swimming pool there, dashed the waters out, from plumb from Alaska. Over in Switzerland, Sweden, and through there, shook buildings and things, around the world.

I believe that it's trying to open our eyes, to see the hour that we're living. I'm here in godly fear, that, it may be sooner than we think, of His appearing.”


But notice.  Branham says that he believes it is trying to open the eyes.  He uses it as a warning for preparation in the sermon, not a declaration of judgment. 

Over time in the sermons from 1964 to 1965, Branham gradually changes this “warning” in to prophecy.  But never was any explanation given by God as to what the people of Alaska had done that was so awful that it deserved the wrath of Almighty God.

When Branham describes how this “prophecy” was given, it was not the Lord speaking through him – instead it was a “spirit” that Branham called the Holy Spirit telling him to say the words “THUS SAITH THE LORD”:

“He said, ‘Throw it up in the air, and say, 'THUS SAITH THE LORD.' I did.  Down from there come a little funnel of wind. I said, ‘Within twenty-four hours, you'll see the hand of God.’”


But was this the Holy Spirit?

When Old Testament prophets declared judgment on the nations in the days of old, God spoke through the prophets to rebuke their constant fall to idolatry.  Like a father correcting his child, God gave reason for the punishment.  Many times there was an option to prevent the judgment, if they turned from their wickedness to God.

But the poor people of Alaska were given no warning, given no reason, and seemingly being destroyed simply because William Branham said so.  Again, notice Branham said in the sermon, “I SAID,” not “GOD SAID.” 

What if I suddenly did like William Branham, and threw a little rock in the air and said, “Judgment is going to strike Montana!”

I’d have the entire church questioning the nonsense I just spewed from my mouth!  Why is God going to smite Montana?  What did those poor people do?  Can they repent?  Is it too late?  Why did God not warn them first!

The first time this earthquake is mentioned as a “prediction” was in a sermon entitled “Jehovah Jireh,” also days after the quake.  But it isn’t Branham who predicted the earthquake.  This prophecy came from Jesus Christ, not William Branham:

“Did you see Alaska having a couple more earthquakes today? One of them, as hard as the first one was, only didn't shake it down. You know, Jesus said them kind of things would take place just before His Coming.”


But there is one change to the Words of Christ that Branham has employed in this simple sentence – again, one used in a fear strategy.  Branham said that Jesus said these types of earthquakes would happen “just before His coming.”

What Jesus actually said is found in Mark 13:8:


“For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines. These are but the beginning of the birth pains.”

Mark 13:8

Jesus said that the quakes signified the beginning, not the end.  There is a long list of things described for our roadmap, from tribulation to the stars falling from heaven. 

Immediately after giving the description of how the false prophets would rise in our roadmap to the Kingdom, Christ told us what would happen just before the end – and it was not an earthquake to punish the poor people of Alaska:

“But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory.”

Mark 13:24-26

It feels strange having to say that this was a failed prophecy since it was “given” after the event happened.  But the cult followers are programmed to believe that anything William Branham said from behind a pulpit is absolute truth.  Even though they are given access to the same resources to try to find a single prophecy given before the event that happened just exactly as Branham claimed, they refuse because they falsely believe they can rest assured in the words of Branham rather than the Word of God.

But even though this prophecy was given after-the-fact, it was given incorrectly.  In this scenario, and if this were true, the Word of God would have failed.  Under Old Covenant Law, God did not strike without warning for repentance.  This would be a different god, a ruthless one that did not care for his children and did not desire for all to be saved and all to believe in His Name.

And God does not strike an entire state filled with good, Christian people as judgment for some unknown mistake, and then change His mind about His own actions.  He does not strike with judgment and then say that it was a “warning shot” for the coming judgment. 

According to the words of this “prophet,” God failed.  God abandoned us.  God deserted people for no known reason.  The people of Alaska are severed from the Body of Christ without any knowledge as to why.  They do not even know what they should repent for; Branham never told them! 

This is not the God that we serve.  We do not serve a narcissistic god who shows “random wrath.”  We do not serve a god that strikes without warning, instills fear in our hearts, and tell us, “Just kidding, guys!  That was just a warning!  I was only joking when I said ‘judgment’ – did you really believe that?  FEAR ME or I will send the REAL judgment upon your heads for that unknown sin!”

 If you are trapped in this cult, you don’t need to fear this man.  You don’t need to fear your pastors, or even your “friends” who tell you judgment awaits for reading your Bibles when it directly contradicts with William Branham.

“But the prophet who shall speak a word presumptuously in My name which I have not commanded him to speak, or which he shall speak in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.  And you may say in your heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD has not spoken?  When a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.”

Deuteronomy. 18:20-22

The “prophet” is dead.  This prophecy given in Deuteronomy was accurate.  Branham gave a presumptuous prophecy, one that the Lord did not Give him, and our Bibles tell us that we do not have to be afraid of him any longer!

We are free!

Paul said in Galatians 4:

“Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods.  But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more?


Come to know God.  The REAL God, the God of the Bible.  The God who loves us, cares for us, and one day will return to take us into our New Home.

Next Blog Post >