O Lord, just once more
1 Good morning, friends, or good afternoon. I broke my watch; I can't tell what time it is. [A brother says, "Still morning, brother."--Ed.] Still morning, is it? All right. I...
Besides, we are living in eternity. We have no time. Time limit stopped when Jesus Christ gave me His Life inside of me to live by, so we are eternal creatures right now, setting together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus. What a time.
Now, this is just my second day here with you, but, my, it's like cold molasses on a morning; it's so thick and wonderful. I have never enjoyed myself any more in any meeting. And I'm looking around now at night, they're so crowded I can't see nobody, but today I can look around. I had the privilege of shaking hands with this fine bunch of ministers in this group here.
4 I remember an old man used to come to our church, by the name of John Ryan, Elder Ryan, they called him. He was from Dowagiac, Michigan. And he used to preach a little bit, and then run back and shake my hand. And then he'd preach a little bit, and run back and shake my hand. I said, "Brother Ryan, I--I appreciate that, but I--I don't get the meaning of why you do it."
He said, "When the battery gets low, I need a charge, so I just got all charged up."
I just seen a--a Methodist minister from up in my country, that just received the Holy Ghost, and I baptized him. Setting over here to my left, Brother Junior Jackson. I seen him shaking his hands like that, kind of reminded me of--of Brother Ryan. How many thinks that the Methodists can't receive the Holy Ghost? You're mistaken. Stand up, Brother Junior Jackson. Him and his lovely wife there, they're from down in Indiana there, a Methodist minister.
7 Where is Wilbur Collins? Is he in the building this morning? Where you at, Brother Wilbur? I thought he was around here. Another Methodist minister standing over here, if you don't think Methodists can receive the Holy Ghost, be rebaptized. Stand up, Brother Collins. There's another one. The brother was up to Asbury College at Wilmore, Kentucky, out of a fine Methodist background.
Now, there's some more people with me here, that's--that's come down. I heard them say "amen," and I know they're here, but I can't see them. Brother--Brother Fred Sothmann from the Tabernacle at Jeffersonville... Fred, are you and Brother Tom here? I been hear him say, "Here." Over here in the corner, yeah.
We are very happy to introduce these men. I don't exactly see at this time; there's perhaps more here that I don't know. I think Brother Jack Moore just got through speaking. And--and so these are fine men, and we love them.
10 And now, it's been such a wonderful time of being here. I said to our wife, my wife, I said, "You--you should have come down in this meeting." We believe in a nice old fashion Pentecostal meeting. We believe that where the liberty in the Spirit of God, that all different phases of denominations can come together and set together in heavenly places, as a church. Our differences makes no difference there; when we're in Christ, we're under the Blood and in the fellowship of His love.
And I want to say this to this group of ministers. I--I come into Pentecost from a Missionary Baptist, and I have admired Pentecost. They're my people. I love them. If I thought there's any church any more right than that, I'd be at the other church. But I'm with Pentecost, because I think that it's the closest thing that I see to the Scripture. If I knowed something else, I'd be with them; and so, not disregarding any other belief, not at all... But the reason I think of Pentecost, because it's closer to what I think is Scriptural, than what anything that I know of.
12 And there's one outstanding thing in this convention, that I have notice, that's clean-face women, none of that manicure, you know, or ever what you call that stuff. I don't like that. That ain't becoming to Christians. No. That's right. I--I like that. I'm the old fashion school that--that likes cleanness. You see? I like to see women... You know, I don't mean...
This is no place to say anything, jokes and sacrilegious, to say so. But I don't say this for that meaning. This is no place for that.
By the way, when did you all get this thing? This come from my Tabernacle, it looks like. It sure does. Is that right, church? Doesn't that look like the old pulpit? Well, then I'm--I think the same old message we preach there goes across it anyhow, so...
15 You know, there's only one woman in the Bible that ever painted her face. And she never painted her face to meet God. She painted her face to meet men. That's right. You know what God did for her? Fed her to the dogs. So when you see a woman wearing paint, you just say, "Good morning, Miss Dog Meat." That's exactly what it is. That's awful, isn't it? But that's what God thinks about it. She's just made common dog meat for wild dogs. That's about what she is. Some of these wild wolves that goes around, whistling, you know; what they call wolfing, you know. That's what it is, just dog meat again.
I'm thankful for you women. God grant the grace to hold you in the sight of the cross, get away from these things of the earth. After all, we're on our road to glory. We're citizens of another Kingdom.
17 Long time ago... I was just looking around over the audience to see if I could see one of the people, and that's some of our colored friends, the Negro. You know, a long time ago, down here in the south, they used to make slaves out of them. Now, I'm a southerner. And there's one thing I'd like to say about them; I wish I could talk to Martin Luther King. That man, being a Christian, don't know he's leading his people right into a death trap, where there's going to be millions of them killed. See? He's wrong.
I love my brethren, my colored brethren. I wouldn't be in Africa and around preaching to them, if I didn't love them. They're God's people, the same as we are. But I don't believe that that man under this, is only going to cause many, many, many more of them to be killed. Then it'll start a revolutionary again, that'll never wade out of the people down here. So they're not slaves. They have as much freedom as anybody else. They... If they were slaves, I'd be on that side. But they're not slaves.
19 It's just because they want to go to school. They got schools. Let them go to school. That's right.
Was there... Remember that old colored brother standing up, that morning, in that riot. He asked the militia if he could speak. He said, "I never was ashamed of being a black man. My Maker made me a black man. But this morning, I'm ashamed the way my race is acting. And what's them people doing to us? Only been good to us."
"The white woman," raised up and said, "I don't want my children schooled by a white woman," said, "because they... she won't pay the--the interest, take interest in my children like a colored woman was in my own race." Said, "They're... Just to look at our schools. They got swimming pools. They got better schools and everything. Why do we want to go to their schools?" That's right.
22 I believe God is a God of--of, well, I'd say He's a God of variety. He makes big mountains and little mountains. He makes deserts. He makes forests. He makes white men, black men, red men. We should never cross that up. It becomes a hybrid. And anything hybrid cannot rebreed itself. You're ruining the race of people. There's some things about a colored man that a white man don't even possess them traits. A white man's always stewing and worrying; a colored man's satisfied in the state he's in, so they don't need those things.
23 But back in the slave time, they were selling slaves, human beings, like an auction block, like they would a used car lot. There's a buyer come forth through the country, and he'd buy them up, and go sell them, and make money on them, just like you would on a used car or something.
Never was God's program, God made man; man made slaves. One's not to rule over the other one. We're to live together in unity and peace.
25 And this man come to an old plantation. He--he wants. "How many slaves you got?"
Said, "A hundred or more."
He looked them over, and he happened to notice, there was one slave among those people...
The slaves were sad. The Boers of Africa had caught the slaves, brought them over here, and made, and sold them. And they knowed they'd never go back to the homeland. They knowed they were here for the rest their life. They'd never see their children again. They'd never see papa and mama. They were here for all the time, and they were sad. And they'd even carry whips, and whip them, to make them work. And so they had to make them work, because they didn't want to work. They were just all broke down.
28 This slave buyer looked over there, and he found among these slaves, there was one young fellow. They didn't have to whip him: chest up, chin up, right on the job. And the broker said to the owner of the slaves, said, "I want to buy that slave."
Said, "He's not for sale."
He said, "He seems to be different from the other slaves."
Said, "He is."
Said, "What makes the difference? Is he a boss over the rest of them?"
He said, "No, no. He's just a slave."
Said, "Maybe you feed him different than you do the rest of them."
He said, "No, he eats in the galley with the rest of the slaves."
Said, "What makes him so much different?"
He said, "I always wondered that myself, till I found out. Over in the homeland in Africa where he come from, his father is the king of the tribe. And regardless of where he's at, he still knows he's the son of a king, and he acts like one."
Hallelujah. If you're a daughter of a King, then don't act like the world. If you're a son of the King, don't act like the world. We are... We know that we are sons and daughters of God. Though we're here in a dark world of death and sorrow, yet we know where our heritage is. We are sons and daughters of a King; not a king, but the King. Let's act like it.
34 A few moments ago, reason I was late, a little Ethiopian girl making up the room, and I noticed she was doing something. I was trying to write out some Scripture text for something I wanted to speak on. Don't come to speak just to be heard; I come to say something that'll help the church to do some help. And then I studying, and this little lady kept kind of holding around. Directly she said, "Would you pardon me, sir?"
And I said, "Yes, ma'am."
And she said, "They tell me that you is the man who did got favor before God, that when you pray for the sick, that God answers your prayer."
I said, "He don't only answer mine, but He answers anybody that'll believe Him."
She said, "I'm sick, sir. Would it be out of the way that if I ask you to have a little prayer for me?"
Said, "Not at all."
I stepped up to her. I prayed something like this. "Lord Jesus, many years ago, when You were dragging an old rugged cross up a sandy hill, and dragging out the footprints of the Blood that was trailing down off Your back, Your little, frail body got so weak that a--You fell beneath the load. There was one standing by, by the name of Simon, a Negro; he picked up the cross and help You bear it. Here's one of his children this morning, sick." About that time, it happened. He's God of the whole human race.
39 Now, friends, you're such a nice audience. And me being come in off the field of missions out yonder, before devils and witch doctors, and so forth. Don't you think they won't challenge you. You'd better know what you're talking about when you come before them. But under such as that, and then coming here where the home fires are burning amongst Christians, and so forth, you don't know what a release it is for a man to stand like this. I wish that I could just set back there in the audience and hear these fine anointed brethren preach the Word, and I could just raise up my hands and cry, and shout, and pray. And how--what a--what a--what a thing it is to warm by the Fire. It--it's such a wonderful thing. But usually...
40 My brethren, I've got so many brethren that love me, and they ask me to speak. And therefore, I know, that called to the service of the King, I must try to work the best I can; but I always overdo it by staying too long. I know you're waiting for your dinner, been in here since eight o'clock this morning, or something, in this group of people. But I thought that, coming this afternoon to speak to you for just a short time, I wrote out some notes here and some Scriptures, that I'd like to refer to. And in doing this, thinking that you got men here who's far more eligible, and a calling of God to take this place than me. But mine is prayer for the sick, and seeing visions, and so forth.
41 And I was talking to someone a few minutes ago. If you look in "Life" magazine, last month, you'll see there. And you got that tape. I'm not a tape salesman. But if you ever believed the Words that I preach, and you can afford it, get "The Seven Seals," and first get "What Time Is It, Sirs?" Listen to that spoke of, six months before it happened. And science is baffled. Standing right under where it was happening there. And told them, six months before, how that there'd be seven Angels in a form of a constellation, and look like a pyramid, would drop down. And I'd be standing north of Tucson, Arizona, and there would be a roar that would even shake the rocks from the mountains. Brother Fred Sothmann setting there, who was standing with us, many of them, when it happened.
42 Now, science took the picture of It, you seen It, went on Associated Press. They didn't know what It was. There's a Cloud hanging, twenty-six miles high. That's fifteen miles, or twenty, above even where vapor's at. They don't know what it's all going about, and they're trying to investigate It. And there, right under It, I was standing. And those seven Angels roaring out their voices, of those Seven Seals, standing there. And the witness, three of us, as a witness of the things that was prophesied on the tape, "Sirs, What Time Is It?" And there now they're trying to find out. It's a mystery to them.
Some of them said, "Go, go... Why don't you go tell them?"
It'd be just like when the Angel of the Lord appeared here at Houston, Texas, in that Light. I told the people all my life I seen that Light.
The church knows it. Science knows it. It's... Everything has to testify when Jesus Christ makes a move. There it is. The magazine, if you want to look in it, it's the one that's got Rockefeller and his new wife on the back. I think it's May's issue of the "Life" magazine. He's God. We're living in the last days.
45 Now, I've come this morning to try to pick out a few notes here and things to speak on something that would help the church, would help with these minister brothers to put my shoulders to the wheel with these men. We are brothers, and they bring me here because they believe in the same ministry. You've been saved during this meeting, why don't you take your membership up with some of these fine churches here that believes this type of ministry. They--they believe it; they stand behind it. And I--I come that we might lay down the Scripture and for something that might help the church.
And my subject like this morning, is to what state that I think the Pentecostal church is of this day. What stand, what hour are we standing in, and what's the possibility? Now, let me quote that again. What state the church is standing in now, and what possibilities lies ahead for it?
47 I want to read from the Scripture for a text, and I want to read from the Book of Judges the 16th chapter, 27th and 28th verses.
And the house was filled with men and women; and all the lords of the Philistines were there; and there were upon the roof about three thousand men and women, and beheld while Samson made sport.
And Samson called unto the LORD, and said, O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray thee,... strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O LORD, that I may be... once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes.
I would like to take the text out of that, from that: "O Lord, Just Once More." May the Lord bless the reading of His Word.
49 It must've been a--a lovely afternoon, something like we're enjoying today here on this campgrounds, here in Hot Springs, Arkansas. And there was a great celebration going on, but very much contrary than what the celebration is today. There was about three thousand Philistines looking down from the galleries to a strange pair that entered the great arena, and highly honored warlords and their fancy jewel-decked ladies was all setting in position.
And as it was then, there was a, oh, something like a mushroom that there was, the building setting upon pillars that went out, something like maybe a modernistic type of architect, arch--architecture. And all these Philistines gathered up there, and had placed themselves up for this great event. And they were in this great celebration, and all eyes were centered to the middle of the arena. They must've stood up, to get a--a better look at the event was just about to take place.
51 And now, as we set here this afternoon, let's see if we can, with imaginary mind, place ourself in that position, to look at this scene. What do we see?
Coming, moving out to the center of the arena, come a little boy, holding the hand of a blind man, stumbling, staggering along. They'd had many monkey shows, and--and little tricks, and so forth; but now has arrived the time for the main event, the thing that they had waited on so long, the main event of the day. The preliminaries were over, the halls that echoed all afternoon with drunken revelry. For they were celebrating the victory of Dagon, their fish god, over the ark and the promise of Jehovah.
53 What a disgraceful sight it is, as we can imagine such a thing taking place, of the fish god of a heathen nation, celebrating the victory over the servants of Jehovah, all because of the failure of the man to carry out the things that he'd been ordained to do. And here was a heathen, drunken, brawling-out, jeweled women, painted faces, a modern Hollywood celebration, bringing the servant of the Lord God bound in shackles for the main event of the afternoon.
The lad must've drug along there, stumbling, come this great mass of human flesh, both eyes out, hair hanging down his back, tied and bound, to make entertainment for a drunken, brawling bunch of unbelievers. He must've stumbled to the post to where they were going to make the fun start from.
55 When I think of that, I think about a church that was ordained of God to do something for God. And it suffered the enemy to blind its eyes from the Word of the living God and the commandment of God, and to the task that it was ordained of God to do; only to be sport in a hiding place for drunken, painted-face, jewel-decked, short-wearing, bobbed-haired women and men of the world. A church that ought to be shining in the power and the strength of the Lord, what a disgrace.
How humiliating it must've been for Samson. With all of his framework made up, that was more than able, and had proved God had His strength through his framework, and every muscle that he ever had, still was in his body, but the blessings of the Lord had left him.
57 We may have all of our framework. We may have our denominational rituals. We may have our names in the papers and on the ledgers. But I wonder today, if the Pentecostal church isn't standing about the same place, with its eyes poked out from the Word of God, and for the purpose that Jesus died, that we together could fellowship around the Word and the things of God.
Humiliated, he was, in the midst of the time that he lived... As I see Samson stand there, it's a symbol, a symbol of a fallen, morally corrupted nation, and a morally fallen, corrupted church. 'Cause he both symbolized Israel as a nation, and the power of God, which belongs in the church. It was certainly a pathetic sight, as we see him stand there. After all, his bringing out there, and this lad leading him, and no eyes...
If the enemy can only blind your eyes from the real thing of God, you'll walk right over the top of it and not know it. No matter what God does, and vindicates it by His Scripture, and proves it by His power, if your eyes are not open to the things of God, you'll walk right over it as blind as you can be.
60 And there he stands. So it must've been a breathtaking time, as these drunken soldiers and women with their cocktail glasses in their hand. I can hear it echo across the halls, "So this is Samson, the mighty man of God, the mighty man of valor, the great warrior?" standing in that condition. I'd imagine, through those warriors as they stood with their arms around their modern Hollywood sweethearts, and their fine tinsel jewelry dingling, the members of this great church of Dagon, I imagine some of them could remember, that by the name of Samson, his very name shook them. His very name brought--brought fear upon them, for he was anointed of God. Many of them remembered it.
Many of them soldiers standing there, could remember of see him standing with the jawbone of a mule in his hand, a thousand dead Philistines laying there. How could it happen, when the jawbone of a mule hit one of those helmets, that practically an inch-and-a-half thick of solid brass, why, you strike that helmet with a jawbone of a mule, that mule's jaw would fly to thousands of pieces. But Samson with the power of God upon him, beat down a thousand Philistines, breaking down their shields and laying them at the--his feet. I'd imagine many of those warriors had fled during that time, stood back up there and remembered. "And that is Samson?"
62 They remembered of seeing the jawbone in his hands, and saying, "Who else wants some of this?" He was a man who could speak. He's a man who was anointed of God. God promised to bless him. He was in the strength of Jehovah.
Oh, no doubt there's many here can remember back when the church stood in that kind of strength, but now all broke up, all kinds of denominations, one fighting the other one. The old all night prayer meetings is not heard of no more. Street meetings is absolutely gone. They're obsolete. Yet we got our structure; we got the framework, but where is the God of miracles? Frankly, many deny it, even denying Divine healing, many.
64 Right here in this state, I had a--a church man with a great church, said, I wanted to get some seats to put here in Hot Springs, at the Armory when I was here, me and Brother Moore. And a Pentecostal man said, "I wouldn't even let..." He wouldn't let me have the seats. He said, "I wouldn't let anybody set on my seats that believed in Divine healing.'" That's not only here; it's everywhere. What's the matter? Prejudice, because of sponsorships and other organizations, forgetting that we are God's people by birth. Samson had forgot that also. I'd remember...
65 I guess, while he was standing there, there was some of them remembered that night at Gaza, how that the man could pick up the gates of Gaza, lay them upon his shoulders, when they tried to fence him in.
You can't fence the anointing of God in. No organization can hold it. Amen. God saves those who He's called. "All the Father's given Me will come."
Well, they thought they had him fenced in. And he picked up the gates and put them upon his shoulders, and walked away, went up the top of the hill, and set down. Big brass gates that would weigh up to tons, and a--a little man pull them out of the rocks, fold them up and lay them on his shoulder, and walk up the hill with them; when anything that stood in the way of God...
68 Many of them in that drunken brawl could remember that of Samson. But what was the matter today, he didn't... There stood Samson, but the Spirit of the Lord didn't come on him no more. He wasn't anointed. He had been stripped of this power by a woman that lured him away from the commandments of the Lord.
I wonder today if that isn't something like our churches. See? Woman, in the Bible, represents "church." And wonder if we haven't listened to the lure of other denominations, tried to educate our ministers into a--a Bachelor of Arts degree, that our congregation could say, "Our pastor has a B.A., D.D., or L.D." Wonder if we haven't went off on some great wild tantrum to try to build a church that's a little better than the Methodists or the Presbyterian? We'd be better off in some mission with the Spirit of God upon us, than we would be in this condition. Wonder if we haven't proselyted and pulled from one to the other to try to make our organizations grow? And we've got great structure, but where is the Spirit of the Lord?
70 There he stood, stripped by a woman. What must've went through that man's mind as he stood there? He had time to think it over.
I hope the church gets that much time. Which is more to you, a million more or a deeper blessing of God in your soul? We have searched...
And could have many more things that I have jotted here, about those lords and what Samson did, what they were thinking.
Now, let's go down to Samson. And what do you think was going through his mind of the many victories that he had had, the many great things that he had done when the Spirit of the Lord was on him? But he was conscious that he had every muscle, but the Spirit of the Lord was missing.
Let me tell you something, church. Don't try to join the most fancy church, the most eloquent bunch. You stay with Christ, where the Spirit of the Lord is.
75 Then he must've thought of the great victories that God had give him, and of the times that when his eyes were open, that he could see the promises of God. But now, since he's been caught up into this thing, his eyes has been put out.
So many people today gets caught away in mental illusions, never think to search the Scripture, see whether it's right or not. Others try to say, "It doesn't make any difference."
Paul, in Acts 19, thought it made a difference. And he said, "If an Angel from heaven preached any other thing, let him be cursed." See? It does make a difference.
78 Now, we see Samson standing there, how he's thinking of the things that he once did with the Kingdom of God. And of how God... He had failed God, and he had failed God's people. Yes, sir. Now, he's a prisoner of the very nation that God raised him up to destroy.
I want to coast here a minute. Pentecost, you know I love you. When I come to you, Jack Moore, Richard T. Reed, Brother G. H. Brown, Brother Ben Pemberman, and other great men, to find out the things that you had, it seemed that we had so much in common till we was like a glove that fit on a hand; I fit right with you. For the Message, not knowing there was such a church, that I believed in, here was a group of people already to receive it. I'm still Brother Branham. I'm still your brother, and I love you.
But do you realize, the very thing that God raised you up for, you have surrendered to it. God brought you out of them organizations years ago to make a people out of you, and you turned around and organized the thing just of what God brought you out to defy.
81 I challenge any persons to show me any place in history, since the church first organized, which was the Roman Catholic church at the Laodicea--or Nicaea, rather, Rome, or when the Catholic church was organized and made an organization. And has any church from Martin Luther, this side...
When God gave Martin Luther the revelation of justification, and as soon as Luther was gone, they made an organization out of it, and it fell. Along come Wesley; after him and Asbury, and so forth left, they made an organization out of it and it fell. Along come Alexander Campbell, and it--it fell, with the organization. Along come John Smith for the Baptists, and it fell. And every time that man has tried to organize something, of a manmade system, it fell and never did rise again. There's not no history nowhere, where any church that ever organized, but what did fall, and every one fell, never rose again.
83 The children of Israel in type, was to follow the Pillar of Fire. And every night they must be ready, not to organize and set down here, but to move with the Fire. That's what God wants His people to do: move with the Spirit, move with the time.
You say, "Well, Brother Branham, we've had all kinds of rains, and inner rains and outer rain." You're intelligent. I don't care what kind of a revelation it is, and how good it looks, if it's not according to God's Word, then leave it alone. This is the Blueprint through the wilderness, the Word of the Lord.
86 But here stands the church today, the Pentecostal church, in about twenty or thirty different organizations, each one calling the other one, this, that, and the other, "buzzard roost," and so forth. What a disgrace, when the very thing that God pulled you out of them denominations for, you turned around and done the very same things that they did. That's exactly what Samson done. God raised up Samson to destroy the nation. And God raised you up for a people, not an organization.
87 But when God started Israel from the--from Egypt, they were only about ten day's journey from the promised land, about forty miles. But they stayed in the wilderness for forty years. Why? Grace had furnished them a lamb for their sins, a circumcision of a sign, a Pillar of Fire as a witness, Moses as a prophet. Grace had provided everything they had need of, but they wanted something to do themselves.
Little did they know, when Miriam was dancing with the tambourine, and the children of Israel dancing with her, and Moses singing in the Spirit, they were only ten days from the full promise land. Little did they know, forty years, and their carcass would rot in the wilderness. What did it? Israel made its most rashal decision it ever made, when it accepted law instead of grace, when they wanted to make some bishops and something of their own, something they had to do into it. God was in the midst of them, leading them.
89 And that's exactly what Pentecost did. When God revealed some new something in the Scripture, instead they called it new issues or whatever you want to do about it. But when God revealed something, instead of accepting Truth and test It with the Bible, they pulled out and made an organization and separated themselves. And then along come this, that, and the other, and now you stand corrupted, the Pentecostal church, bound in the fetters of organization, the thing that God raised you up to destroy, and now you're just as organized as they are: godly men in every one of them, and women; that's true, every one of them.
And we're every one guilty. Pot cannot call kettle black. We are all guilty, every one of us, you oneness, twoness, threeness, and--and whatever you might be. What a disgrace, what a reproach that you brought upon Jesus Christ. What a reproach to the name of Pentecost. They've brought so much reproach till it become a disgraceful name almost. The people hardly want to associate themself with such a name. It's because that you did what you was supposed not to do. And going on and following the commandments of the Lord, should be one great unit of God marching on to victory today.
91 He let a woman lure him away from the Word of God; now he stands doing tricks for the devil. That's right, just exactly.
Same thing is taking place today, let Jezebel, the mother of harlots... Revelations 17 says that she was the mother of harlots. Now, if she's a whore, that's a--that's a woman that lives untrue to her husband. She claims Christ her Husband, and don't live by His commandment.
And what are the other churches doing? What is a harlot? Is the same thing as the other. What is it? Prostitution to God's Word. And she was the mother of harlots. And let that Jezebel doctrine, and so forth, because a bunch of intellectual men, that wants to get together and organize something so they can have big names themselves. And there stands the church, divided brotherhood. Oh, my, what, what a disgrace in doing it.
What a terrible thing it is, spiritually blind. "Oh," you say, "well, I'm not spiritually blind." Actions speaks louder than words; prove you're blind by the way you stumble over things. See?
95 Now, remember, this tape's being made and will be sent around the world. See, and I'm not so much speaking right here, but this goes to about seventeen different nations, out into jungles and everywhere.
Spiritually blind, blind to what? The Word of God, the truth of God. Your organization won't let... Fine ministers that comes to me, and say, "I believe that to be the truth, Brother Branham, but if I preached that..." Now, there you are. "If I believed that, well, the people would..."
I don't care what the people says; I don't care what the organization says; it's what God said to be the truth. And if it's the truth of God, God will back it up. How can you expect to have faith when you have desires to honor one from another? See, it takes faith away from you.
99 Went back to the denominations, Pentecost that was born out of denomination... Pentecost was not born in a denomination; it was borned out of a denomination. And the cunningness of Satan pulled you right back into it, where you come out of, "As a hog went to its wallow, and the dog goes to its wallow..." Now, look at them, defeated.
We ought to already be over in the promised land. Jesus Christ ought to be so eminent among us, till there wouldn't be any sickness. Oh, it would be glorious.
There shouldn't be bobbed-haired women, short-wearing dresses. And--and it shouldn't be men that's married three or four times, deacons in our church. And don't tell me it's not in Pentecost; it sure is. But it's because of social prestige. It oughtn't to be, but it is. Why? Because denominational pull, political, money, instead of coping with the Word. Brush out some precious brother, and put somebody on because he's got a big social standing in the town.
I want a man that's got social standing in glory. If he don't know his abc's, what difference does it make? You know what ABC stands for? Always Believe Christ. Uh-huh. That's right. You learn that.
103 Some man come to me, not long ago, and said, "Brother Branham," a very--one of the best known Pentecostal ministers in the land. He took me up in his room; he said, "I want to pray for you."
I said, "I'm not sick."
He said, "I--I love you."
I said, "That's mutually felt."
He said, told me, said, "Why don't you leave off of telling them women about their bobbed hair and all this kind of stuff, and about the church?" Said, "That's not your business."
I said, "Whose is it then?"
He said, "It'll come to pass that you won't have nothing but a bunch of posts to preach to."
I said, "I'd rather do that and preach the truth, than compromise with the Devil." See, see?
He said... I said... Said I--said, "Brother Branham, didn't God call you to pray for the sick?"
And I said, "Yes, sir."
He said, "The people believe you to be a prophet."
And I said, "Well, that--that, I never said that."
He said, "But they believe you that way." And said, "If you're a prophet, why don't you spend your time to teaching people how spiritual gifts, and how to heal the sick, and--and how to do these, get these spiritual gifts, and help the church instead of standing constantly bawling the women out, and bawling the men out, and things like that?" Said, "Well, why don't you leave them alone?" Said, "Why don't you teach them something greater than bobbed hair and stuff, and let that alone?
I said, "How can I teach them algebra when they don't even know their abc's?" That's right. "Let them learn their abc's first."
110 An old minister went and preached justification at a revival, second night, third night, fourth night, fifth night. The deacons called him out and said, "Reverend, don't you know no more than the sermon on justification?"
"Oh, sure. But let them all get justified first, and then we'll preach something else." That's right.
Oh, if you could only get back to the foundation... There stood Samson, defeated.
Now, look, we might be prettier; that might be so. But it's just like I was coming down the road the other day; I seen a big sign, said, "Funk's, a hybrid corn," how great it was. But it ain't no good. It's just as no good as it can be, and it's killing the nation. You read about it in "Reader's Digest." If women keep on eating hybrid beef, and corn, and things, they can't have a baby in twenty years from now. There's no good in it.
114 What is a hybrid, hotbed plant? If it isn't original plant, you have to keep spraying it all the time to keep the bugs off of it. The bugs will eat it up. But if it's original plant, you don't have to spray it. A good healthy plant, a bug won't crawl on it.
That's what's the matter; you have to keep babying people in the church, "Glory to God, sister." See? You're a hybrid; you're brought in by some other way.
You take that hybrid corn and plant it back, and what you got? Nothing. It won't even make nothing.
The church is pretty today; that's true: bigger buildings than you ever had, the greatest congregations you ever preached to, the better intellected ministers than you used to have. You used to have men out of cornfields somewhere, that God called out there on the broom-sage patch. But now you sent your children to school, and made grandchildren out of them, and come back with all the Ph.D's, and LL.D. And even one of the great Pentecostal churches today, before they send a man to the mission fields, he has to stand before a psychiatrist to see if he's mentally intellected enough. Think of it.
118 In Pentecost, the requirement was not a mental test; it was a test of the Holy Spirit that fell down on the day of Pentecost. That's out of the question to the people today.
Did you know the Roman Catholic church was first the original Pentecostal church? It taken it two thousand years to get in the condition it's got today. If this Pentecostal organization keeps on another fifty years, it'll be worse than the Catholic church. That's right. Sin heaping on every side... Now, you might not think that I... You might think I'm crazy, but I know where I'm at. See? It's true. You just wait; you'll find out. Yes.
120 The hybrid, hybrid corn causing women to narrow in their hips and widen in the shoulders, and so forth...
Evolution used to tell us that in evolution, that certain animals got together and bred something different, and something different, it come on out to a man. They kept searching around till they disproved their own theory.
Let me tell you something, you farmers here. What makes a mule? He is the awfullest animal in the world. He's a hybrid. He ain't got no sense to begin with: can't teach him nothing. He'll wait all of his life, get to kick you just 'fore he dies. You can't tell him nothing. What is it? Because he's a hybrid.
123 Just reminds me of some hybrid Christians, so called. You can try to tell an old mule something, he'll stand with his ears up and go "Haw. Haw. Haw." See? All he knows is bray and carry on. You can't tell him truth and teach him nothing. That's the way these people: tell them about Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever, "Haw. Haw. The days of miracles is passed," a braying of some seminary that we learned. It's a hybrid.
The Holy Spirit will punctuate every commandment of God with an "amen." That's a seminary-something spirit breathing out of him. Not braying against the Word of God, if it's the Holy Spirit. It'll punctuate it, "amen." See?
125 You know, I think a mule is ignorance. But you know what? He can't tell who his papa was or his mama was. See, his father was a little jack; his mother was a mare, but he can't breed back. He's finished.
A plant can't breed itself back. Take a white violet and a blue violet, bring out your pink violet; plant it two or three times, it'll come back either white or pink. See?
That proves (See?) they never come like that. God said, "Let everything bring forth of its own seed," and that's the way it remains. Man was made in the image of God, not a monkey. See? That crazy stuff...
Notice, you know, the ignorance of the mule. But you know what, I--I... You can't tell him nothing. He's hardheaded.
But I think a real thoroughbred horse, oh, my, he knows who his mama was, who his papa was. He's pedigreed. He knows all of his grandparents and everything, because he's got a pedigree.
129 That's the way it is with these hybrid, so-called Christians. "Days of miracles is passed. Well, we Presbyterians, we Methodists, we so-and-so, don't believe this. We Trinitarians, we so-and-so, we don't. We don't do this." See, you don't know where you do stand.
But a genuine borned again pedigreed Christian from the Book of Acts, knows exactly where he stands. He's borned of the Spirit, and here's his pedigree: come from the branch of God. It'll produce the same thing each time.
No wonder the church is more prettier. But what's the matter? It's run out of Spirit. It's bred itself out with the world: let the women wear shorts, play the piano, let them wear makeup. Let the men get married four or five times and hold their place, position. All these forms of things that they go through, just exactly what the Scripture said, she's just as much defeated as Samson was. Just exactly. Yes, sir.
132 Oh, as Samson thought... I may... I don't want to hold you too long; I'll skip some of these texts here. As Samson must've stood there and thought of his error, and where he could be...
Remember Israel. Can I... Will you pardon me a minute, to go back to Israel? Do you know what, what did they do those forty years when they made their organization out there? Instead of going on through, led by the Pillar of Fire, the Angel of the Lord, which was Christ, instead of going on through and following Him, in about ten days, they'd been in the full promise. But you know what, they wandered in the wilderness, the Bible said.
134 They come to Kadesh-barnea, which was the judgment seat, and there when the spies come back and talked about the land, they said, "We can't do it."
Caleb and Joshua said, "We are more than able to do it," for they was looking to God's promise, not what the circumstance was.
"We can't have a church without having a organization." Well, you don't see what God said. That's right.
What did they do? Did God bless them? Sure, sure. They wandered about. They married wives. They planted vineyards. And they had babies, and they increased. And they done good in the wilderness. That's right. But they still wasn't in full blessing.
138 So when all these who made this great big group of organization, "old fighters" it was called like, God let them stay there till every one of them died. And then He started with the new generation under the leadership of Joshua, who believed the Word (Amen.), and he took them to the promised land.
O God, may this young generation of Pentecostals get the--get the vision. See? They went on to the promised land. We ought to be where we have all kinds of the gifts of God.
We did speak with tongues. That's right. That's fine. Nothing against that. Moses crossed the Red Sea; the enemy was killed behind him. We--we--we appreciate that. But that's still not all of it.
How little did your fathers and mothers think when they was standing out there and shooting pistols through the windows at them, and them dancing in the Spirit, that their children would ever come to this? But it did.
But there's a new generation coming on now. Samson's hair has growed out...?...
143 Watch. Don't never let Delilah ever weave you back into something like that. Uh-huh. Stay away from them. That's the thing that's cursed you. You was raised up to condemn it. And I've tried my best to do it, though I've stood alone. But I've tried my best to stand to the commandments of God. I see the church stand there, stripped of the power of God, stripped of the blessings, stripped of the gifts.
And God will pour His gift down. They simply say, "That's mind reading, mental telepathy," when they ought to be embracing it. See? "Well, he's over at the Oneness now. No, that's--that may be for the... Oh, they were this, that, or the other." See? Oh, if you'd only knowed your day. Don't let it pass you. This is the hour, uniting in Christ. Notice.
145 Samson standing there, thinking of his error, the things that he had done... Finally he realized what caused him to be that way? The enemy put his eyes out.
And that's the first thing that an organization will do, will put your eyes out to any other fellowship but them of your own. Amen. I could say a whole lot of things right there, but I--I won't do it. But you, if you are spiritual-minded, you know what I'm talking about. It'll put your eyes out. Just you and your group... If you're a Methodist, you're only Methodist; if you're a Baptist, you're only Baptist. If you're a Presbyterian, you're... If you're Oneness, if you're twoness, if you're the threeness, or how many more they got (See?) you're just that. "The rest of them's no good."
147 The Baptist had a slogan in the days of Billy Graham's early days, forty... "In '44, a million more." What did you get? A bunch of cigarette-smoking, church-joining hypocrites.
When Billy himself, when I was at his breakfast, he said, "You know what's the matter?" Said, "Here's the example." He said, "I'll go in..." Said, "Saint Paul went into a city, he had one convert. And he went back a year from then," and said, "that one convert produced thirty more." He said, "I'll go into a city for six weeks and have thirty thousand decisions, and I can come back in six months and can't find thirty." [Blank.spot.on.tape--Ed.]
Well now, I admired the man for his courage, but I'd like to ask him one question. "Who took Paul's convert? What lazy pastor about him?" What was it? Paul stayed with him until he was thoroughly a child of God, borned of the Spirit. He took him so far in Christ till he couldn't even look back.
150 They just walk up and maybe join the church, or even speak with tongues. I believe in speaking in tongues. I believe the Holy Ghost speaks in tongues. But I know that all that speak with tongues don't have the Holy Ghost. Yeah. I've seen witch doctors speak in tongues, and drink blood out of a human skull, and call on the devil, speak in tongues and interpret it. That--that ain't no sound proof. No, no. The Life of Christ in you, the fruit bearing itself record, that's it. But we settle down on that; if a man spoke with tongues, that's all, let him come in. Look what you got today. That's true speaking in tongues, but not all the truth.
Like the colored man eating a slice of watermelon. He said, "How'd you like it, Mose?" He said, "That was good, boss, but there's surely some more of it."
If I can speak with tongues, surely there's some more of It. See? But what do we do? Just like Israel: settled on that one thing, and wandered in the wilderness now for forty years, still without the rest of it over in the promised land. That's exactly what we've done.
153 Samson standing there (I must hurry.), must've looked back, thought of all those things. And here he was, the very reason he was raised up, he was blinded. His... And there his great structure, his great organization of a human body, a mountain of flesh standing there, his great big huge muscles, but no strength.
Here we stand today. Back in when Pentecost used to rank just so many, maybe four or five hundred people across the whole nation, today it's the fastest growing church in the world. What are we getting in? A bunch of members. With our great framework, we ought to be ten thousand times stouter than we was when we started. And we're ten thousand times weaker that we was when we started, because we're building it upon a--a bottomless foundation, upon organization, something that God has cursed. And how can we build a--a church upon the chars of a Sodom and Gomorrah?
I hope you don't hate me, but you just set still a minute and listen. See?
He can't do it. What God's cursed, He's cursed. Then keep me away from anything that God cursed. I'm wanting what He's blessing. That's right.
157 Notice. As he stood there, thinking, the warlords, half drunk, standing there, "I remember that great person. I remember when he stood with a jawbone of a--of a mule in his hand. I remember when he folded up the gates of Gaza and walked to the top of the hill. I remember all these things. When that lion roared after him, that little bitty fellow, the Spirit come upon him, and he just tore that lion in two with his hand. And here he stands, bound, by a little kid leading him around. And our god, the fish-god Dagon has won the victory over him."
158 There you are. The world has creeped into the church, and has won the victory. It's undressed our women. It's put a desire in the people's heart to stay home and watch television instead of going to the church and the prayer meeting. The love of the world has creeped in and took our Pentecostal church for a hell-bound ride.
The desire and the faith... Run a person through a prayer line and let him see whatever takes place; the next night, there they are right back again. Abraham's Seed? The faith isn't there. It should be there, but it isn't. When you...
160 God told Abraham once, and twenty-five years he looked for it. No matter how far back it got, I can hear him say to Sarah, "Go out there; you're sixty-five years old. Go buy some Birdeye, and get some pins and make some booties. We're going to have the baby."
"How do you know you're going to have it?"
"God said so." That settled it.
The first... See? She was about twenty years past menopause. He'd lived with her since she was about sixteen years old, as a young man. Didn't make any difference; didn't look at that; didn't consider that. He considered what God said, separated himself from all unbelief, went out into the wilderness.
That's what's the trouble today. You want to make yourself with an organization of unbelief, instead of separating yourself from the things of the world; you want to see how close you can ride to the end of sin. See how far back you can stay away from it.
163 But here they was. The first thirty days or twenty-eight days passed. Mixed audience now, and you adults know what I'm speaking of. "Sarah, honey, how you feel?"
"No difference at all, Abraham."
"Glory to God, we're going to have it anyhow."
"How do you know?"
"God said so."
Ten years passed. "Keep them pins laying there and all the Birdeye."
Some of his friends come by, "Abraham, father of nations, how many children do you have?"
"Glory to God. At this time, none, but I'm going to have them."
"How do you... Why, you're ninety years old."
"Don't make a bit of difference. It'll be a greater miracle now than it was if it had happened back there twenty years ago."
But, today, "I was prayed for last night. I don't feel any better today." Abraham's Seed?
What's the matter? You've been stripped. Your fibers of church is still there; your organization is as great as the Methodist's or the Baptist's. You're building to this fiber all the time, but where is that genuine faith? Oh, you clap your hands; you shout and sing songs, and dance. My, I've seen that happen in many doctors'--witch doctors' meetings, see them clap their hands, and speak in tongues, and interpret, and jump up-and-down. Father Divine has the same thing. That ain't what I'm talking about.
I'm talking about a genuine faith that can unfold the promise of God, and stand there and make it live, a Scriptural thing.
171 The Mohammedans, I've seen them fall on the street and holler, "Allah, Allah, Allah," until they become so conscious. I... Me and Billy Paul stood there and seen a man take a sword and punch it just under his heart, and a doctor pour water through this side and come out the other side. See him take a--a piece, as a lance, and run it through his lip and up through his nose, and won't even bleed a drop. Run splinters under his fingernails, hollering, "Allah, Allah, Allah. Allah, Allah, Allah. Allah, Allah," like that. A Mohammedan, and despises the thoughts of Jesus Christ. He didn't have no Holy Spirit. No, but he had emotion. That's right. We're...
Christianity is not exactly an emotion. Heathenism can produce just as much psychology as--as--as Christianity can; but that's not Truth. We want Truth. Christ is Truth.
What do we do? We fixed ourself so we stand like Samson, now, as he stood there thinking what he could've been. I think, today, the church ought to stand and think with me a few minutes, what we could've been if these things hadn't have done this, what we could have been.
174 Then it comes to his mind, something arised. I believe God did it. Oh, if it could only happen on this campground. "There's a possibility." There is a possibility God is forgiving. There is a possibility.
We ain't got long to stay here. Our time's running out. The confederation of churches is taking the country. It'll unite with Catholicism. We got the man in there just exactly.
Wished I had time to go into it, to show you that this nation is just exactly like Israel. They come into a strange land, drove out the occupant, and inherited the land. That's what we did. Israel, they had the first man, great men, such men like Joshua, such men like David, like Solomon; but finally there come a man on the--on the kingship, a Ahab, a renegade. We had great men, a Washington, a Lincoln; but now what you done? The very thing that we come here for freedom for, you've put it in the White House, because you think more of your politics than you do about Christ. Exactly right.
177 And remember, in that time all the ministers give in. Jezebel was the leader. Listen, Ahab himself was a pretty nice guy, but Jezebel was the neck behind the head. She was the one who did it. She was the renegade. I ain't got nothing against that man as a president, but it's that Jezebel system that's behind it. Can't you see these popes and things coming in now; one's raising that don't know Joseph. And the first thing you know, we are right now asking the Protestant church to consolidate with it, and every organization will go right into the federation of churches, and there you're trapped.
We are living off of tax money that'll be paid in forty years from today. The nation's broke. Where's it at? Who's got the money? We haven't got it. Our--our bonds are no good. We've got to have gold. Who's got it? The Catholic church. What will they do? Before these whiskey men and all these great holders and stockholders will ever give it up, they'll absolutely sell out, and the church will loan the nation the money. And what it will do, it'll sell its birthrights right straight into Catholicism. Then what are you going to do? Amen. That's the gold of the world, them and the Jews, and that's the covenant that he makes with Israel.
See, you Bible readers can teach that in your church. You see, I'm just showing you I believe the same thing.
180 That's how it'll have to come to pass, and we got it right there now. And here we are, organizations, with the mark of the beast upon us, just exactly like the first beast, an image unto it, a federation of churches joining of power. And they made a image unto the beast, that he could both speak, and it done the same thing the first beast did before it. Right in our clutches... Oh, children.
What time is it? "Is there a possibility?" Samson stood there and said. What time? Just... "Is there a possibility?" Samson happened to think, "That great God, He's omnipresent. He's everlasting God. I see my mistake. I'm going to repent." And he cried out.
There is a possibility that we could do the same thing. They of that day... This day don't see the vision like Samson. If we could only see the vision of a possibility, start right here, right now: a possibility. See?
183 They sit tight, and clap their hands, and wonder what it's going to come out to be. You're going to find out someday, you're going to come out the little end of the horn (See?) that time. Have great gatherings and glittering, worldly things, "Oh, we think, well, you know what? We got more members than we ever had. And we can build billions of dollars of buildings, got more money than we ever had, better churches maybe than some of the Protestants or some of the others has got. Oh, man. Scholarship, well, we take our children to school, and building new seminaries for them to go into."
Let me tell you right now. A man with an education, without the Holy Spirit, takes hisself, every degree he gets, farther away from God. That's right. You say, "I got a Bachelor of Art." Then you're just a little bit farther away than you was: split an egg and atom and stumble over a blade of grass that they don't know nothing about. You've heard the old saying, "Fools will walk with hobnailed shoes, where Angels fear to trod." That's right. Scholarship, but it don't bring the Spirit. It don't bring the works and Life of Jesus Christ.
185 The trouble of it is, the church today is not like Samson. They're not willing to pay the price. Samson prayed right when he prayed, "Lord, let me die with the enemy." He knowed it was going to cost him something. He knowed it was going to cost something. It's going to cost you something. It's going to cost me something: your social prestige, your place and position in the denomination. "Lord, let me die then. I see Your purpose." He knowed it was going to cost him something. You must be ready to die out to your enemy to get in the blessings of God. Samson was willing to pay the price to get the power of God again upon him. He's willing to do it. Are you?
Are you willing to sacrifice your television programs? And, you know, it used to be as wrong for us to go to the movies. But now the Devil put one over on you, he brought it right in the house with you. That's right. See?
187 I used to go around to an old Methodist preacher who used to sing a song:
We let down the bars, we let down the bars.
We compromised with sin;
We let down the bars, the sheep got out,
But how did the goats get in? See?
You let down the bars; that's all.
Oh, I hear someone say, "Now, wait a minute, Brother Branham, we have revivals." Yeah, what is it? A denominational revival. That's right. Look at your morals and your differences. Is it a revival? Is there a breaking-up time? Is there time that everybody can associate together and have fellowship? If your organization's in it, it's all right. Getting farther away from the Word all the time (That's right.), making new bishops and everything. See?
189 Samson knew that his present backslidden condition could not produce the strength of the challenge of the hour.
Men, women, my brothers, and sisters, let me say this. The church in its present denominational condition cannot produce the strength to challenge the time to call it a time. Men and women wants God, honest hearts. And you might leave the--the oneness and go to the twoness; you might leave the twoness and go to the threeness; and you might do all this, that, or the other; you're only pulling a paper, or--or mission-trotting, or--or acting like I don't know what: a juvenile kid. That's right. You don't get it like that. Our backslidden strength, it cannot meet the challenge of this hour. The denominations will not take the a-vindication of the Word.
191 When, Jesus Christ, as I tried to tell you last night, promised this in the last days... He promised to have it here, and you know that by the Bible. And for fifteen years, back and forth across the nation, and they're getting worse all the time. That's right. See, they don't want it.
They say, "Well, now, he associates with oneness," or, "He associates with trinity. He does this, that, or the other." We associate with Christ, out in every organization, trying...
But God sees to that, that they see it. And the real believers are like the little prostitute, last night; as soon as It flashed across her path, and that seed of Life laying there, she believed It. That was all; it struck fire right now, when there was thousands standing there, making fun of It, but not her. She knew that that was Messiah. She knew that that was the promise, that when He come He would do that.
194 Wonder if we only knew the same thing, or have we got so wrapped up in our organization that we're forbidden to even look at it? Wonder if you look at the--the magazines and pictures, and old dirty filth of the world instead of reading your Bible like you should be? "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that comes out of the mouth of God."
Our children, our boys has become a bunch of little Rickies and Rickettas (You know that's right.), a bunch of hot-rod drags and everything like that. And where you find a Pentecostal boy? With his hot-rod, on the street. Where do you find sister? Down at the canteen somewhere, doing a rock-and-roll? Where do you find pop and mom? Pop, out playing golf, or out somewhere like that, and mom out in some stitch-and-sew party of some lodge she belongs to, or something. When, it ought to be a home gathered together under the leadership of the Holy Spirit with the Bible back again. There's where we've drifted to. Not criticizing, but just shaking you a little (See?) that you'll understand.
196 All the time, and (Oh, I got to close.) the Philistines never noticed what was going on. There was something going on, because something begin to move in Samson's heart, "There's a possibility." He felt back to see if it was still there.
Some women have a hard time now, you know, it was supposed to have it. But see if His promise is still there, see if He still made... Just feel back and see if He ain't the same yesterday, today, and forever.
He felt it. He knew there was something. He raised his head. He had no eyes. They didn't notice the tears coming down out of them empty sockets, where the glands was letting the tears drop down. His head up, his lips moving slowly, tears falling from them blinded sockets, he was repenting. He knowed that Jehovah still lived. Though he had wronged, he knowed He was still God, the tears dropping off of his cheeks, as he stood there. The Philistines was too drunk to notice that.
199 If your church members, your colleagues in church don't notice it, you just keep on praying. He wanted to see one more time, God's Word made manifest before that blinded, drunken bunch of heathens, unbelievers. If that's the hungering of the church today, to see once more the old fashion, God-sent revival from the pulpit plumb to the janitor, an old fashion cleaning up, an old fashion revival with the power of God, a--a Gospel that cleans a man throughly from the inside out: gun-barrel straight, old fashion, back-woods, sky-blue, killing, sin-killing religion that takes all the Hollywood out of you, them that's interested.
There he was, praying. Not a new denomination now, a new creed; but a vindication of the Word. "Lord, You were once upon me, You once give me strength. If I only had that strength, I've got the muscles, but they're weak."
201 We've got the members, but they're weak. They love things of the world better than they do the things... You say, "No." Oh? Look upon the churches and find out. Don't try to deny it. Your actions speaks more than your words does. Oh, yeah, got more members, bigger muscles, but where is the strength of the Lord? Your big muscles won't meet the challenge of this hour, the rapturing faith to take the Church out of this thing before judgment strikes the earth.
And judgment's fixing to strike, I'll say, as my friend Jack Moore said; if God lets America get by with the things it's doing now, He'll be morally obligated to raise up Sodom and Gomorrah and apologize to it for burning her up. Right. Judgment is next.
203 God, take all the world out of me. Give me faith, O Lord, for a rapture. For, there will be two in the bed, and one will be taken, one left. Two will be in the--in the automobile seat, and one will be taken and the other one be left. It's going to happen in a moment.
You say, "Brother Branham, when will it be?"
You might criticize this. If it's all right to say it? [Minister says, "Go ahead and say it, brother."--Ed.] Let me drop a little something here. One day you're going to find out. You're going to say there, "Oh, I been taught that there's this, that, and the other, going to happen before the Lord comes. There'll be a great tribulation period, and we'll go through it." See, see?
206 You know, one time Jesus was asked a question. He said, "Why does the scribes say that Elias must first come?"
And Jesus said, "I say unto you, He's already come and you didn't know it."
One of these days you're going to say, "Well, I thought the Church was going, had to do this, that, and the other. I thought there'd be a rapture. I thought..."
See, it'll be a secret catching away. If He took one here in Hot Springs, and one somewhere else, and one down there, one there, will make up literally millions of those that come up out of the ground. And there's at least five hundred people, every day missed in the world, and we don't even know where they went to. See, the rapture's going to make up of all those who sleep in the dust of the earth, that's right with God.
They'll say, "Well, I thought a rapture's take place."
"It's already passed, and you knew it not. You're left." See?
"Well, everything's going..." Yes, sir.
It's a secret coming, the rapture is, comes to steal away. Like that book I read that time of (What was it?), Juliet and Romeo. He come at nighttime, when the people were sleeping in worldliness, and the church all in worldliness. And all of a sudden, the cry come, and away they went.
211 And listen, you've heard so much in the Christian Business Men, the Full Gospel Men, saying, "Oh, you know, Reverend Holy Father So-and-so... The Presbyterians are beginning to receive the Holy Ghost. The Lutherans are beginning to receive the Holy Ghost."
You sleeping bunch of people, don't you know Jesus said when that sleeping virgin come to buy Oil, it was that very time that the Bridegroom come and she went in? Remember, they did not get It. Is that right? As Booth-Clibborn said, "Huh? "They might went through some emotions, but they really didn't get It. When they come to buy Oil, it was too late.
213 And here they are now, the Presbyterian, the Lutheran; look at that Full Gospel Business Men's "Voice," and that bunch of Pentecostal grandchildren with these denominational brethren, thinking that that's something great. You might ask someday, "Well, I thought this."
"It's already passed, and you knew it not." Let me stop there, because I--I'm not here to preach doctrine.
But the possibilities... Don't you take that chance. This is the day. This is the hour. There's a possibility right now, maybe not at five o'clock. There's a possibility. "Lord, I know You're God. I know You are. I am away from You. But I know that these fibers of mine once buzzed with the power of God. I know the things that I care for today, I claim to be Pentecostal; the women, "I cut my hair"; the men, "I do this, that, or the other."
And you men that will let your wives wear them shorts and do them things, and then call yourself a son of God, shame on you.
217 I went to a certain great denominational church, not long ago, to a... They had a meeting, and I went out to visit them. And the pastor taken me out, and he was going to introduce me to his wife. She was the pianist. And that woman had on a dress so tight that the skin was almost on the outside. She had makeup on, and wore all kinds of things in her ears.
And I said, "Brother, do you mean to say that your--your wife is a saint?"
Said, "Yes, sir."
I said, "She looks like a hain't." I said, "I never seen such in the name of Pentecost and holiness."
Oh, brother, we need a house-cleaning from the pulpit to the basement. And one of these days... You say, "I'm Pentecostal." That don't mean no more than being a pig, to God. That has nothing to do with Christ. That's just a name. You got to be Pentecost in your heart, the fruits of the Spirit. Notice. Oh, my.
221 He was aware what would happen if God answered his prayer. Are you aware? Are you aware that organization's going to excommunicate you? Do you realize you're going right now to federation of churches, and things that you're going right into? Do you realize what it's going to cost you? You know them women you play cards with are going to call you old fashion and all that kind of stuff? 'Cause you won't let your children wear shorts, and you're doing these things, you know what it's going to cost you? You better count it before you start. See? You better think about it. Yeah. You better--you better talk it over with God first before you make the start.
He knowed, if his prayer was answered; but he was ready, and he was sincere.
If the church can only get in that condition. If you're ready right now, if you're sincere, if you really mean business, if your eyes are open to what I'm trying to tell you in a roundabout way, if you're sincere, then say, "Lord, I don't care what it is, I'm ready. I see the sign. I know that it's later than we think. It's time to come."
225 Then Samson cried out, "Lord, they poked my eyes out. I know that You're God. I know that You have power to do it. I know You can set me free from these fetters. Just once more, Lord, just once more."
Just once more, Lord, just once more. Let there be a camp meeting on the side of a hill, like there was on the hill at the upper room. Let there come a sound from heaven, like a rushing mighty wind, fill all the house, visible evidence of the resurrected Christ.
"Just once more, Lord, just once more," he cried. As he cried out in sincerity, standing there, and his blinded eyes. "I know the price, Lord, but just once more."
The God answers prayer. He felt the fibers tightening. His muscles begin to take hold. His leg strength begin to come back. He said to the little boy, "Lead me to the post now."
"Lead me, Lord, lead me. Lead me to the post, to Calvary. Lead me to the post where I can be crucified, till my old worldly life dies out here, and all that I am. Lead me to the post, Lord."
230 When he begin to feel them muscles tighten with the power of God, he didn't have to see what was taking place, he felt what was taking place. He begin to twist his shoulders, and when he did, down went the building. That day he conquered; he killed more Philistines than he did all the days of his life.
Friends, there's a possibility that this church in this state... Now, I got about three or four pages of notes there I'm going to let go. There's a possibility. There's a possibility right here in this camp meeting. There's a possibility right here at this hour. There's a possibility, if we're ready to pay the price, we can see another Acts 2 take place.
232 "Once more, Lord. We've messed it up. We've organized. We've broke up our brotherhood. We separated our fellowship. We've took a little group over here. We're fighting with one another, and the devil's setting back watching us whip one another down. Lord, is it possible that once more that all hundred and twenty of us can be in one accord in one place? Is it possible that there come a sound from heaven as a rushing mighty wind? Once more, Lord, once more."
Let's stand to our feet, and say, "Once more, Lord. Once more, Lord."
O Lord God, hear me, Lord. Once more, Lord. Once more send the Spirit upon this camp meeting in power and in glory.