The Basics: 1933 Baptism
claimed to have held a baptismal service in the banks of the Ohio
River that drew international fame. According to the story, thousands attended and
over five hundred were baptized. As Branham was immersing the seventeenth person,
a light shone from the heavens and God Himself spoke from the heavens. In a story that parallels Jesus'
baptism by John, Branham claimed that the
Father announced his ministry by saying, "As John the Baptist was sent forth to forerun
the first coming of Christ, you have the Message that'll now forerun the second
Coming of Christ."
This supernatural event, according to Branham, gathered a very large crowd in Jeffersonville.
Five hundred people were baptized, the local news arrived, and the Associated Press
quickly picked up the story. And according to Branham, these reporters printed the
story of the mystic light in an article that quickly spread throughout the United
States and Canada.
Those who study this event quickly find great difficulty, due to the fact that the
Associated Press archives contain no such article. And while one would assume this
edition of the newspaper would be found on display in the ministry headquarters,
Voice of God Recordings, it is not to be found. We can only rely on the statements
made by William Branham himself, along with the actual story that was printed in
the newspapers — which seems to have not gained national attention. The reporter
who described the baptismal service did not take notice of a massive gathering,
an unusual number of converts to Christ being baptized, a light shining from the heavens
nor a voice announcing William Branham's ministry. In fact, according to the reporter on the
scene, there were not even seventeen converts, no mention of the baptism, and even
more interesting, no mention of the tabernacle which supposedly held the meeting.
A scan of the article may be found below:
More information on the Ohio River baptism may be found at www.searchingforvindication.com.
Back To The Basics
Branham's accounts of this event:
After while, I met up with the Full Gospel people. And I... Just before then, I received
the baptism of the Holy Ghost. And then look like it just kept coming more and more.
And then it, He appeared on the river, one time when I was baptizing before probably
ten thousand people, like a great morning star came down where I was standing. Thousands
seen It. He went back right into the heavens.
50-0300 GIFTS AND CALLINGS ARE WITHOUT REPENTANCE, CARLSBAD, NEW MEXICO
But It appeared down there on the Ohio River before nearly ten thousand people while
I was baptizing in August. I was baptizing some fi-five hundred, I guess, that afternoon.
Hundreds of them was standing, and the choir singing, On Jordan's Stormy Banks I
Stand. Was about two o'clock. We hadn't had rain for about two weeks. I had my seventeenth
candidate I was taking out in the water. And I raised up, and I asked him if he
believed. He had. He would been repented at the meeting? Yes. I raised up my hand,
I said, "Father, as I baptize this boy with water, may You baptize him with the
Holy Spirit." And as I started, Something went, whew Brother Branham illustrates-Ed.
I looked up. I heard a Voice. Said, "Look up." Thousands standing all over the bank
on the Ohio River facing Louisville. Paper carried a big article of it. And I looked,
coming right down out of the heavens, out of a place about as big as this platform,
where the blue skies churning like waters... Coming right down out of there came a
big thing, like a star, whirling around, going, whew [Brother Branham illustrates-Ed.],
coming right down visibly before the eyes. Moved right down, looked like a star
at a distance. When it got close, It looked like a milling fire of Light, moving
right down and stood over where I was. Then went right back up into the heavens
again. The waters let up. I've often wondered if that wasn't the Angel that was
on the waters (See?) in Bethesda, you know. Went away... And papers carried a big
article, "Mysterious Star Appears Over Minister While Baptizing." And on down, It
50-0813 GOD REVEALING HIMSELF TO HIS PEOPLE
When I was baptizing hundreds down at the Ohio River at the foot of Spring Street
in Jeffersonville, where thousands were blacked on the bank... At right at two o'clock
in the afternoon, I was baptizing the seventeenth person. I started to pray, and
thousands standing there looking. And down from the heavens came that green, whirling
down like a big star in the distance. When It got close, It was that Light, a Pillar
of Fire. I think It's the same One that led the children of Israel in the days that
went before Moses. And It's in the church today. It's here tonight, the same Pillar
of Fire. When He told me, He said, "As Moses was given two signs to vindicate his
ministry, so will you be given two signs. And by these signs, that people will believe."
And there It is. I believe It's the same Angel of the covenant. And He came down
when hundreds and hundreds standing there, people fainted, and fell, and everything.
The papers carried a great article, "Mystic star appears over minister at two o'clock
in the afternoon while baptizing." There It was.
50-0820 BELIEVE YE THAT I AM ABLE TO DO THIS
About twelve years ago, I was baptizing my first group after my-one of my revivals
at Jeffersonville, Indiana, where I lived at this time-my home is, rather. And standing
on the banks of the Ohio River where Blank.spot.on.tape-Ed. had gathered out. And
while I was baptizing... It was two o'clock in the evening, on June. And the seventeenth
candidate, I was baptizing in water at the Ohio River at the foot of Spring Street.
And I heard Something speak, and I felt Something take a hold of me. And I looked
up. And when I did, coming down from glory came this whirl coming down where I was
at. "Courier Journal Newspaper" packed an article of it, said, "A mystic star appears
over a local Baptist pastor while baptizing in the river." They couldn't make out.
Oh, up to probably ten thousand people saw It as It moved down where I was at, and
went back up in the skies. Come right where I was and went back up into the sky.
Well I... Many asked me what It meant. And I said, "I do not know."
51-0505 MY COMMISSION
From Do You Now Believe preached in Battle Creek, Michigan on August 17, 1952: Recently
when I was baptizing on the river at Jeffersonville, when all the local newspapers
packed It, two o'clock in the afternoon when I was praying, here It come right down
out of the heavens, right at two o'clock in the evening, June, or in the afternoon,
rather, in June, about the middle of June, hung right over where I was, and a Voice
from It, saying, "As John the Baptist was sent to warn the people of the first coming
of Christ, so is this Message to warn the people of the second coming." Right back
up into the heavens, when people screamed, fainted. What is it? God, getting the
Church ready. You don't need no new doctrine. You don't need no new theories. You
need real true hearts to Almighty God, to believe on God, and His Son, Christ Jesus.
Have fellowship with everybody, all the Christians, by the Holy Spirit. Amen.
52-0817 DO YOU NOW BELIEVE
And He... When I was-I was a young Baptist preacher baptizing my first converts, five
hundred of them down on the river , my first revival... I had about three thousand
attend at the revival. And my education was so poor, till my girlfriend read the
Bible while I preached.
53-0509 THE PILLAR OF FIRE
It was seen on the river there when I was just a boy, baptizing my first group in
the Baptist church: Five hundred, one afternoon, at the foot of Spring Street in
Jeffersonville. The newspapers packed an article of it: A Mystic Light Appears Over
Local Baptist Minister While Baptizing At The River .
54-0301 THE ANGEL OF THE COVENANT
One night while in prayer, away, there was a Man come walking to me on the floor.
And I seen Him; this was not a vision. It was the Man. I'd heard His voice many
times, saw Him when I baptized at the river , and I was first ordained a Baptist
minister. Had my revival, baptized five hundred, my converts, after a two weeks
meeting at the foot of Spring Street. And right there all the local papers packed
the article of it: "Mystic Light Hangs Over Minister While Baptizing." And It can't...
It was like a Pillar of Fire. And It hung down there and they... And then, the people
asked me about It, and they got me scared, and told me It was the devil. And one
night while I was in prayer... Many years later, just before coming to the Full Gospel
people, I was praying, "God, take this thing away from me." I said, "Lord, You know
I love You, and I don't want It no more, please." I went to pray all night about
it. And I heard someone walking. I looked coming over to this side; there come a
tall Man, big, long hair. Now, it didn't look like the picture of Jesus. I believe,
I say this reverently. I believe, by vision, I seen Jesus twice. I-I-I... It was a
little Man, but it doesn't look much like the artist paints Him. But I-I fainted
when He-looked at Him, so I... it was... He was standing off to my side.
54-0314 WHY I'M PRAYING FOR THE SICK
So then, I-I-I have never feared. I've just went humbly to preach the Gospel. As
God sent me to do this. And the things that I speak of right here... Even in one of
your papers here not long ago, the old "Louisville Herald," I believe it was, or
something like that, declared the article when it was down here on the river, and
that Light come down and hung over where I was at, when I was baptizing, a young
minister many years ago out across the country.
54-0328 SIRS WE WOULD SEE JESUS
Just the same thing He said when I baptized right down here on the Ohio River, many
of you was standing there, twenty-three years ago, right on the Ohio River that
Light, Angel, come right down to where we was at, and said, "As John the Baptist
was sent for a forerunner of the first coming of Jesus Christ, your Message will
bring the second coming of Jesus Christ." And it's done it. It's... He hasn't come
yet, but look what it's done; it's swept the world around. See? And today now, just
thinking, the-the effort that's went forth, there's been literally millions...
54-0515 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
And now, they-you look in there, and you'll see another picture of It where It settled
down, and a newspaper photographer caught that one at Camden Arkansas. But it wasn't
authentic like this American Association. And they-they got it, and it was-then
it became authentic. So we-and many thousands of people... I was standing on the river
here some time ago baptizing five hundred after a revival, and It come right down
where I was standing. And people fainted and-just there where It was. And It was
just like a roaring noise, a whipping fire. I pray that God will come visible before
the audience tonight in that manner here at the capital once more, if I can find
favor with God...
54-0624 DEEP CALLETH TO THE DEEP
From Everlasting Life And How To Receive It preached in Jeffersonville, Indiana
on December 31, 1954: Sometime ago, as a young minister, when my first revival come,
I had it over here on the corner, where this housing project in a tent. I was baptizing
a group down at the river that Sunday afternoon, when the Angel of the Lord made
His first appearance in public in a vindication of the Message that I was to speak.
And It was a Light came down from heaven and stood there. People are perhaps in
the tabernacle tonight, who stood and seen that Light. And I started forth, telling
it, and so forth. And all you know how the story goes, and on and on. And people
sometime would walk away, and say, "That's just imagination." They'd leave a meeting
where people would see It, and walk away, say, "I saw It." Others say, "Well, I
didn't see It." Now, of course, God lets see who He wants to see.
54-1231 EVERLASTING LIFE AND HOW TO RECEIVE IT
So then I-then I was getting too critical on speaking with tongues, you see. But
one day, then, how God vindicated that to me! I was baptizing down on the river,
my first converts, at the Ohio River, and the seventeenth person I was baptizing,
as I started to baptize him, I said, "Father, as I baptize him with water, You baptize
him with the Holy Spirit." I started to-to put him under the water. And just then
a whirl come from the heavens above, and here come that Light, shining down. Hundreds
and hundreds of people on the bank, right at two o'clock in the afternoon, in June.
And It hung right over where I was at. A Voice spoke from there, and said, "As John
the Baptist was sent for the forerunner of the first coming of Christ, you've got
a... have a Message that will bring forth the forerunning of the Second Coming of
Christ." And it liked to scared me to death. And I went back, and all the people
there, the-the foundry men and all them, the druggist, and all of them on the bank.
I had baptized about two or three hundred that afternoon. And when they taken me
out, pulled me out of the water, the deacons and so forth went up, they asked me,
said, "What did that Light mean?" A big group of colored people from the-the Gilt
Edge Baptist church and the Lone Star church down there, and many of those was down
there, they begin screaming when they saw that happen, people fainted.
55-0117 HOW THE ANGEL CAME TO ME AND HIS COMMISSION
We were singing that when the Morning Star, the Angel of the Lord made Its first
appearance over where I was standing in public, for the first time in my life, at
the foot of Spring Street in the Ohio river in June '33, as a young Baptist minister,
55-0123 THE APPROACH TO GOD
I was baptizing them down at the end of Spring Street in Jeffersonville, Indiana,
in the Ohio River, when... nearly seven or eight thousand people standing on the bank,
bear witness, that two o'clock in the evening, June, 1933, how that a Pillar of
Fire come down out of heaven, and hung over where I was standing. The "Courier Journal,"
and "The Times News"... no, it was the... [Brother Branham snaps his fingers-Ed.] Oh,
I'll get the name of the paper just in a minute, He snaps his fingers again-Ed.
if I could think of it, the Louisville paper: great article: Mystic Light Appears
Over Local Baptist Evangelist While Baptizing At River. Very mystic thing, people
could not understand. Many fainted at the Presence of It. The Angel of the Lord
come right down and hung over where I was. The "Louisville Herald" is what it was,
"Louisville Herald, Herald Post" of Louisville, Kentucky.
55-0227e THE HEALING OF JAIRUS DAUGHTER
From Blind Bartimaeus preached in Alberta, Canada in April, 1955: And then on the
river , when I was first ordained in the Baptist church (twenty-three-year-old boy,
or, man), God come down that day when I was baptizing five hundred at the river
, and appeared in that same Light. The papers packed articles of it. And then later
on, they said, "Oh, well, it might have been psychology." When It come into the
meetings and people, some people so close to God, or, may it not been that, may
it was for them. Some people can see things and some doesn't see things.
55-0400 BLIND BARTIMAEUS
Won't you come and go along? I remember when about five hundred of us standing yonder
when I was baptizing a hundred and twenty, about this time of year, down here on
the banks of the river , when that great Morning Star come shining there on the
river . Hallelujah! A voice speaking from It, said, "Someday you'll spread the Gospel
throughout the world." I said, "A poor, little, ignorant farm boy will never do
that. It's the grace of God." Amen. Oh, who will come and go? Get rid of, lay aside
every weight now. Don't listen to those enticing spirits. Come, listen to the Word
of God, THUS SAITH THE LORD. "Blessed are they that hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they shall be filled."
55-0724 ENTICING SPIRITS
I'd just been ordained in the Baptist church, about-about two weeks and had a revival
there in the city, lasted for two weeks. And we was baptizing five hundred converts
on the river that afternoon when the Angel of the Lord come visible. The newspapers
and things picked it up, and so forth: twenty-three years ago. And the voice that
He spoke from there, it has done just exactly what He said He would do.
56-0311 THE TRUE AND FALSE VINES
Not only that, but I say this: I'm looking down here at the audience now. Here not
long ago standing yonder on the Ohio River...?... gone and such unqualified, a poor...?...
boy trying to do what thought was right for the Lord Jesus. There before thousands
of people, the Pillar of Fire moved from the sky, come down there and said, "As
John was sent for a witness before the first coming, this message you'll take will
be a witness to the whole world for the second coming. That'll be proven," He said.
About ten years before that, about-about fifteen, nearly ten or fifteen years before
that, when I was just a young Baptist preacher, no more than a boy, baptizing out
there in the river, hundreds of people that afternoon, my first revival; and that
Light come down from heaven and stood there before thousands of people. They fainted
and everything, years ago when I was baptizing. And a Voice spoke from there and
said that I would take a message around the world, which would start a revival just
like that it did in the days of John the Baptist before the second coming of Christ.
I knowed a bit more about it than nothing. I wrote it down and kept it. They kept
it. The newspapers had it, and everything. "Mystic Light Appears Over Local Baptist
Boy, Pastor, While He's A Baptizing In The Water," and all about it.
57-0115 GOD KEEPS HIS WORD
How many remembers the Star hanging down here at the Ohio River, many years ago,
when He said... Here's a picture of It here yet, when He come down. Said, "Your Message
will go forth as a forerunner for the second coming, just like John went forth as
a forerunner for the first coming." And look, around the world has swept a revival.
Tens of thousands times thousands and thousands, and a great revival...
57-1002 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ON HEBREWS
From Faith preached in Jeffersonville, Indiana on December 29, 1957: And right yonder
on the river , many, many, many years ago, when we was baptizing from my first little
revival, there where this Angel of the Lord here, come down and hung over where
we was at, and He said to me this message will go around the world, and would start
a revival that'll sweep around the world, and it'll be just before the coming of
Christ the second time. And when the-Brother Davis, Doctor Roy Davis, many of you
know him, who ordained me into the church, into the Baptist Church, when he said
I had a nightmare, how would I, with a seventh grade education go and preach to
kings and potentates and monarchs around the world.
How many's still living, when It first appeared before mankind down here on the
river when I was baptizing them hundreds down there that day, in the building, raise
up your hand. There's three or four hands: still living from years ago down here
on the river when It come down, and the message of the Lord came: still just the
same. Did It do just what It said there, that the ministry I would be preaching
would start a revival around the world just before the second coming of Christ?
Look what it's done. See?
58-1005 GOD CALLED MAN
I can hear the water splash yonder on the Ohio River. When I was a little old boy
preacher about twenty-two years old, singing that there, and I heard... Looked up
above me and heard a Voice, said, "Look up." Here comes that big Light hanging right
yonder, come moving down over me and said, "As John the Baptist was sent to forerun
the first coming of Christ, you'll have a Message that'll forerun the second coming
of Christ." Oh, how could I believe it? But it happened just the same. And tonight
revival fires are burning around and around the world. The great ransomed Church
of God lifted Herself out of that place. And great campaigns of healing, and signs,
and wonders, and miracles, showing forth the coming.
59-1217 WHAT WAS THE HOLY GHOST
Then when I was converted, I joined the Baptist church, started preaching the Gospel,
right away. The Lord blessed greatly, and I had my first revival, a two weeks revival,
five hundred came to the Lord. I taken them down at the river to baptize them. And
while they was around ten thousand on the bank, watching... It was real dry, no rain
for two or three weeks. People were praying for rain. And when I was baptizing the
seventeenth convert, I heard a Voice, said, "Look up." It scared me. I was just
a young boy. The girl that I later married, was taking pictures on the bank. I heard
It again; said, "Look up." And I was afraid to look up. Everyone on the bank was
wondering what I was hesitating about. All-many peoples up and down the banks of
the river ... Newspaper photographers... And then It said again, "Look up." And I looked
up, and as I looked up, here come that Light coming down. People begin fainting,
falling, and a Voice came that shook all around the place there, said, "As John,
the Baptist, was sent to forerun the first coming of Christ, the Message that is
given you will be a forerunning of the second coming of Christ." Not that I would
be a forerunner, but the Message was the forerunning. I'm no more than no one else.
It's the Christ we're speaking of. Then I-them visions started coming to me more
than ever. E-9 Now, that newspaper went on to Associated Press. It went all the
way into Canada, and all through... We have the clippings of it yet. Said, "A mystic
Light appears over a local Baptist minister while..."
60-0210 REVELATION THAT WAS GIVEN TO ME
But one thing that I'm happy about tonight, my wife... As much as we have been together,
and she's seen the great visions of God manifested and come to pass. She was down
at the river that day at Jeffersonville when the Angel of the Lord made His first
appearance; it was packed on the Associated Press across the nation. Been a... It
was 1933. She was standing there, but she heard the Voice but didn't see the Light.
Where, even the newspaper photographers saw the Light. But she was quite young then,
and about twelve years old, and she never seen the Light. She was watching the people,
many were fainting. And It just stayed there just about one minute and then It went
right straight back up into the skies again. And the newspapers put a great article,
"Mystic light appears over-over a local Baptist minister while baptizing." Went
all the way into Canada, got on the Canada press.
60-0310 ELIJAH AND THE MEAL OFFERING
Look at Elijah. What did he call? He couldn't help it. He's cried out against that
Jezebel, did he? How... Here come John the Baptist with his same spirit. How could
he have helped crying out about it: "It's not lawful for you to have your brother's
wife." It cost him his head. See? God takes His man, but never His spirit. See?
It keeps moving on down. The forerunning of the coming of the Lord Jesus, as You
spoke down there at the river in the-in 1933 when I was baptizing there, and you
see what happened to it. See? It's just exactly what He said it would take place.
So you can't help it.
60-0716 FROM THAT TIME
My wife, about six months ago, saw It for her first time. She was on the river that
day when it appeared down there. When the article went all over the-the English
speaking world on the Associated Press: "Mystic Light Appears Over Local Baptist
Minister While Baptizing." Stood there... It talked; people heard It talking back
and forth. Thousands of people standing there watching me baptize from my first
revival-five hundred converts-in the Ohio River... It was in the paper, newspaper
clippings; we have it. Got on the Associated Press, Canada got it, all around over
the country. "Mystic Light..."
60-0716 FROM THAT TIME
You remember when that Angel come down on the river (which you have the picture
of it, and you know about), when it said here about-in 1933, when I was baptizing
my first group, that the message would sweep the world? And every nation they've
got a revival going. They've had it everywhere. See? Sure. Pulling the elected out.
That's right. "This Gospel shall be preached."
62-0407 THE SIGNS OF HIS COMING
And the papers packed it, "Mystic Light appearing over local Baptist minister,"
a boy, while baptizing five hundred at the Ohio River. And He said, "As John the
Baptist was sent to forerun the first coming of Christ, this message shall forerun
the second." Here we are.
61-0412 A GREATER THAN SOLOMON
Then I think about the river in 1936, I think what He said. What happened there?
Many of you know. I was just a boy, and of baptizing my first baptism when that
Angel of the Lord came down and stood over where I was at. Some people said, "You
didn't see it." Then science proved that it was so. See, see? Now, what did He say
there? "As it was, as John the Baptist was sent forth to forerun the first coming
of Christ, your message will forerun the second coming."
62-0527 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Years ago, as a little boy, when I was baptizing down on the river that day, just
my first message in the Missionary Baptist church... I was baptizing five hundred.
And that afternoon, on June, 1933, on June, about the 15th, here come that Pillar
of Fire whirling out of the skies, like the pretty, sunshiny afternoon, and go right
down in that Voice and shook the whole country round there, said, "As John the Baptist
was sent to forerun the first coming of Christ, your Message will forerun the second
coming." Now, it's started a revival immediately after that. And there it's went
across the nation, around the world, Pentecost reviving. And that's what has taken
place, the second coming of Christ. And now, the newspapers packed it way up in
Canada. It was on articles, and so forth, and went on the Associated Press. I kept
telling people. Then finally the eye of the camera begin to catch it. And now they've
got it back there.
It's all down through the records. The first time that was ever taken, the Canadian
newspaper packed it thirty-one years ago, across the whole province of Canada, all
the provinces, the Dominion of Canada. Said, "A mystic Light appears over a minister
while baptizing in the river ." That was in 1930, at the foot of Spring Street at
Jeffersonville, Indiana, when around ten thousand people was standing there. And
I was baptizing my seventeenth person. I said, "Heavenly Father..." And I was a young
Baptist preacher, and I said, "Heavenly Father, I can only baptize him with water
unto the fellowship of this church. But I pray that You'll baptize him with the
Holy Spirit." And I said that, Something said, "Look up." I heard it a third time
said, "Look up." And I turned and looked, and a great roar shook around over the
crowd, and here come that Light milling itself down, and stood right over me where
I was standing. And a Voice came from it, said, "As John the Baptist was sent to
forerun the first coming of Christ, your message will forerun the second coming."
Look at it today. A revival broke after that, and around the world it's went, a
Pentecostal, Holy Ghost revival. Now, Lutherans, Baptists, Presbyterian, Catholics
and all's receiving the Holy Ghost, everywhere, and the church making ready to go
in. The message is coming to the end. See? There you are.
62-0726 A TESTIMONY UPON THE SEA
When that Angel there... And I suppose, besides my wife, there's people here tonight,
from thirty years ago, that was standing close when That come down. Is there anybody
in the audience now that was there when the Angel of the Lord, that come down on
the river the first time, before people? Raise up your hands. Yes, there they are.
See? Now, I see Mrs. Wilson raise up her hand. She was standing there. My wife,
there, she was there. And I don't know who some of the rest of them is, that was
standing on the bank here, before many, many people, when I was baptizing at two
o'clock in the afternoon. And right out of a brassy sky, where there hadn't been
rain for weeks, here He come with a roar, and said, "As John the Baptist was sent
forth, to forerun the first coming of Christ, you're sent forth with a Message,
to forerun the second Coming of Christ."
Now, if I've got the wrong thing, then God will never confirm it. But if you have
got the right thing, God is obligated to confirm it. There you are. And that's the
proof of it. See? If it's right, God is obligated to prove it's right. If it's wrong,
He will have nothing to do with it. So, I remember, after my first revival. I was
down on the river, baptizing. I took the seventeenth person out. My wife, a little
girl standing on the bank at that time. (I had never been married to my first wife
that's dead.) And there she was, on the bank. And they was all standing there, hundreds
and hundreds of people, yes, four or five thousand, maybe more, up-and-down the
riverbank, a real hot afternoon in June. I walked out in the water, and I took a
candidate, about the seventeenth person, to baptize him. I had around five hundred,
after my revival, to be baptized. And I walked out in the water with this person.
I started to raise my hand. I said, "Heavenly Father, as I..." And about that time,
Something shook me. I thought, "Where is it?" I looked around. Everybody had their
heads bowed, oh, as far as I could see. Way back up on the banks, there was, oh,
cars and people piled all over the walls, and things. I looked again. I heard a
Voice say, "Look up." And I was afraid to look up. I was just a kid. We got the
picture of It. I said, "Father..." Something said, "Look up." I put my hand down.
This young fellow, I was to baptize, looked at me in the face. He said, "Well, Brother
Bill?" I said, "Did you hear That?" He said, "No." I said, "Heavenly Father..." He
said, "Look up." I looked up, like this. And coming down from the skies come a Pillar
of Light whirling around, a Voice coming from It, roaring, coming down. Said, "As
John the Baptist was sent to forerun the first coming of Jesus Christ, so are you
sent." O God! I watched that Light. I had seen It, since a little boy. I tried to
tell people. They said, "You're out of your mind."
63-0127 AN ABSOLUTE
When He appeared down there on the river thirty-three years ago this coming June
in the form of a Light, you old-timers remember that I told you since a little boy
that voice and that Light, and people thought you was kind of a little bit off at
the head; of course, I would've probably thought the same thing somebody said it.
But now, you don't have to wonder about it now, and the church hasn't wondered since
1933. Down on the river that day where I was baptizing hundreds of people, I remember
that Mayer boy told me, said, "You're going down to duck those people, Billy." Little
Jim Mayer down here, I think he's dead now. I think he got killed out there; some
woman shot him. But he-he asked me, "Are you going down to duck those people?" I
said, "No, sir, I'm going to baptize them in the Name of our Lord Jesus." And there
was a woman going along in the group. She said to another woman; she said-made a
remark, something about it. She said, "Well, I wouldn't mind to be ducked"; said,
"that's all right; I don't care..." I said, "Go back and repent. You're not fit to
be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ." This is not nothing to play with. It's
the Gospel of Christ, revealed by a commission, the Word. Just, now... You saying,
"Nonsense," and "Foolishness," you could've placed it somewhere else; but remember,
it's promised in the Word that this would happen, and just exactly what it would
be, and here it is. See? Then down there that day, when they were standing at the
river , and the Angel of the Lord that I had told you that It looked like a-a star
or something in the distant, and then It got close, and told you how the emerald
Light looked, and there It come right down on the river where I was baptizing, when
businessmen down here in the city said, "What does that mean?" I said, "That wasn't
for me; that was for you; I believe. That was for your sake that God did that to
let you know that I'm telling you the Truth." By being a kid, a boy like, and about
21 years old, they-they wouldn't believe that (You see?), because it's too much
for a kid.
63-0319 THE SECOND SEAL
Do you know what brought these things to pass, when I first started and the Lord
appeared to me down on the river and told me that? And Brother Vayle saw that, I
believe, in a paper in Canada, many years ago, where that Angel of the Lord appeared
on the river down there, it was on Associated Press, "Mystic Light over local minister,
while baptizing ." And-and you know what did that? When we had the tent meeting
just across the street, a tent that seated about, oh, twenty-five hundred people,
ministers come from everywhere, and said, "Brother, come here a minute." I was just
a boy, like, oh, just a kid. And they said, "How do you keep those people in one
accord? They love one another till... I haven't seen people love one another."
63-0717 HUMBLE THYSELF
That day down there, about thirty-three years ago, or thirty-four, standing on the
banks of the Ohio River there, at the bridge, and about five thousand people or
more gathered on the banks. I was just about twenty years old, twenty-three, twenty-two
or twenty-three years old, my first revival. I was baptizing five hundred people,
that afternoon. And the deacons had led me out in the water. About the seventeenth
person, when I was baptizing, I heard a Voice say, "Look up." And I turned to look
up. Billy's mother, we wasn't even married then, just going together. Here come
that Pillar of Fire, circling out of the bright blue skies, at two o'clock on June
the 15th, coming right down out of the skies, like that. And a Voice roared out,
all over the place there, and said, "As John the Baptist was sent forth to forerun
the first coming of Christ, you have the Message that'll now forerun the second
Coming of Christ." Photographers taking the picture. How could we believe that,
with just barely a grammar school education, and so forth? But I believed it. That
afternoon, when I was so tired when I got finished baptizing , they had to come
get me out of the water. I couldn't hardly stand no more of the current of the river
. And It went, come down, and they took the pictures of It. It was on the Associated
Press, went world-wide almost, up into Canada. Brother Lee Vayle has a copy of it
yet, I think, from on the Associated Press, "A mystery Light hangs over a local
Baptist minister while baptizing at the foot of Spring Street in Jeffersonville,
Indiana." The Louisville Herald picked it up, took the pictures, and went off, and
away it went across on the Associated Press.
63-1130 GO AWAKE JESUS
I went down then to baptize a bunch of people on the river. When I was baptizing
there, where about five thousand people standing on the bank; right in the middle
of the day, two o'clock in the afternoon; hot, they hadn't had a rain for a week
or two; and standing on the bank. Here come that Pillar of Fire whirling out of
the air, coming down where I was standing, and the Voice saying, "As John the Baptist
was sent, and to forerun the first coming of Christ, your Message will forerun the
Second Coming of Christ." The newspapers packed it, and it swept into Canada on
the Associated Press, around the world, "A local minister, Baptist minister, baptizing
, and," said, "a mystic Light appears over him." The very One that they caught the
picture of here, and done it in Germany and-and everywhere. And it's done. My pastor
said to me, he said, "Billy, what kind of a dream did you have? Why, you know you
didn't see..." I said, "There were hundreds standing there, witnessed It." And they'd
come down, said, "Oh, that's a mental delusion." Trying his best, that's old man
Unbelief and Mr. Skeptic.
64-0405 A TRIAL
I remember down there, when I was a little boy. You've read my life story, and you
know the story. I remember, on the river down there, when I was a young Baptist
preacher, and was baptizing there. About ten thousand people standing on the bank,
when one afternoon... My first great revival, somewhat around a thousand converts,
and I was baptizing them out there in the water. The seventeenth person, I was leading
out into the water. And I heard a noise, and I looked around. It was hot. It was
on June, 1933, at the foot of Spring Street at Jeffersonville, Indiana. I was leading
them out there. And the banks, all up-and-down, was just crowded with people. I
walked out with this little boy. I had seen him at the altar. I said, "Son, have
you accepted Jesus Christ to be your personal Saviour?" He said, "I have." His name
was Edward Colvin. And I said, "Edward, do you know what I'm doing now?" He said,
"I do, Brother Branham." I said, "I am baptizing you, showing to this audience out
here, that you've accepted Christ as your personal Saviour. When I baptize you in
the Name of Jesus Christ, you take on His Name. You rise for a new life. And when
you leave here, you're to walk a new life. Do you understand that, Edward?" He said,
"I do." I said, "Bow your head." I said, "Heavenly Father, as this young man has
confessed his faith in You. And as Thou hast commissioned us to 'go into all the
world and preach the Gospel, baptizing them into the Name of the Father, Son, and
Holy Ghost,' commissioning them to believe all things which You have taught." "I
therefore baptize thee, my beloved brother, in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ."
And as I laid him into the water, I come up, I heard something going, "Whooosh!"
I looked at the crowd, and it... I heard a Voice say, "Look up!" I thought, "What
is that? Billy here, his mother, two or three years before we was married, she was
standing there. I seen her face, white. She had a camera in her hand. "Look up!"
I heard it the second time. I was scared. I looked around, the people standing there
just looking, just dumbfounded. I heard it say again, "Look up!" And when I looked,
here come that same Pillar of Fire that led Israel through the wilderness. Thousands
of eyes looking at It coming right down over where I was standing. And said, "As
John the Baptist was sent forth to forerun the first coming of Christ, your Message
shall cover the earth and forerun the Second Coming of Christ." That went into the
newspaper, on the Associated Press. Doctor Lee Vayle, here this afternoon, picked
it up, plumb in Canada and around, "Local Baptist preacher, while baptizing, a mystic
Light appears over him."
64-0412 A COURT TRIAL
One day at the river , I was baptizing five hundred people at the river , when,
all of a sudden, this same Light that come in when I was a little boy. And I had
told the people I had been seeing It. They said I was dreaming and it was some kind
of a mental conception that I had. But before better than five thousand people,
at two o'clock in the afternoon, in 1933, out of the skies come this Cloud coming
down, speaking these Words, "As John the Baptist was commissioned to forerun the
first coming of Christ, your ministry will forerun the second coming of Christ,"
where thousands times thousands of people heard it, and newspapers give witness
64-0419 THE TRIAL
And I had a baptismal service down on the river , on 1933, on the middle of June,
about sixteenth or eighteenth of June. And standing out there, it had been so hot,
for weeks. Hadn't had no rain for two or three weeks, and the country was burning
up, nearly. And there was, I guess, around seven or eight thousand people on the
bank. And I walked out in the water, with my seventeenth candidate, to baptize.
And when I baptized, started to baptize, I said, "As I baptize thee with water,
may the Lord Jesus..." When I said that, Something struck me and said, "Look up."
And as I turned to look, after the third time It said it, a place about fifteen-feet-square
was churning up-and-down in them brassy skies. And down from there came that same
Pillar of Light that come in when I was a little baby, that spoke to me in the burning
bush, or the bush back there that day, and come into that bush, and come hung over
where thousands of people. Newspapers packed it all across the nation, plumb into
Canada. We got the clippings. "Mystic Light appears over local Baptist minister
while preaching, or baptizing." And that Voice came down and said, "As John the
Baptist was sent forth, to forerun the first coming of Christ, so will your Message
forerun the second Coming of Christ."
64-0427 A TRIAL
I remember Sister Wilson there when I was called to her bedside dying with TB, hemorrhaging,
till the sheets and pillow slips was laying bloody in the corner. I remember the
Holy Spirit stopping the blood. A few days afterwards I baptized her in the Ohio
River in icy water in the Name of Jesus Christ, and set her in the back of my open
car, a little old roadster, and rode her from Utica... Wasn't that right? From... [Sister
Wilson speaks to Brother Branham-Ed.] Yeah. Sister Hope, my wife, Sister there,
was in the front seat of a little roadster, and my mother and Sister Snelling in
the back. I got their picture, Sister Snelling, mom, and all, Mrs. Weber, Mrs.-my
mother-in-law, all of them standing there, and Meda, just a little bitty girl standing
out there, and now, gray-headed woman. [A sister speaks to Brother Branham-Ed.]
64-0830 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS IV
Then, consider now, I ask you at this hour, you people here of Jeffersonville. In
1933, the supernatural Light that fell down yonder on the river , that day when
I was baptizing five hundred in the Name of Jesus Christ, as about a twenty-year-old
boy. What did It say, Jeffersonville? What was It at the foot of Spring Street there,
when the Courier Journal, I believe it was the Louisville Herald, packed the article
of It? It went plumb across the Associated Press, plumb into Canada. Doctor Lee
Vayle cut it out of the paper, way up in Canada, in 1933. When I was baptizing my
seventeenth person, under this Witness; and you know the rest of the story. And
when I was standing there, baptizing the seventeenth person, a Light come down from
Heaven, shining down above there, like a Star falling from the Heaven. A Voice said,
"As John the Baptist was sent to forerun the first coming of Christ, your Message
shall forerun His second Coming, into all the world." This day this Scripture is
64-0219 FROM THIS DAY
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