Leadership Part 1
We update studies as the Lord Jesus leads us. You can find the latest update of this study at ChurchAges.net
Human leaders have split up Christianity into 45000 different types of churches and denominations. Something is wrong
- Human leadership is a confusing concept
- The Rights of People
- Error causes changes in meaning or emphasis of a word
- Hostility is the attitude toward Bible truth
- The pitfall of trying to serve God when not in His Will
- Believers have to be called out by God
- Emphasize the work not the office
- The individual believers are the church
- Church people want a man as the head of the church
Human leadership is a confusing concept
We tend to follow strong human leaders as they give the impression that they know where they are going.
But power corrupts, and leaders suppress any opposition to their viewpoints to maintain their position and income. Thus, the office of the church leader is easily abused.
In the New Testament, there never was a priest, minister, reverend, or pastor who was put in charge of a church as the head of the church.
Today, the church leader has the freedom to criticise and condemn his critics. But the people are afraid to criticise the head of the church as that offends, and then they are accused of being bitter and hating the head of the church. That way they attack the critic's person or character because they cannot Scripturally refute his criticism. This is a very subtle tactic.
This abuse of the church leader's office or head of the church means that he exercises control over the people as a group so that the Holy Ghost cannot lead the people individually.
JOHN 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
Jesus is the Word. The Holy Ghost has to remind each individual what the Scripture says. The Holy Ghost has to teach us to understand Scripture and prove our beliefs just from the King James Version of the Bible. We must not parrot the personal opinions of the head of the church.
The Bible never mentions parrots.
We must be able to see or understand the meaning of Scripture to see Jesus walking through the pages of the Bible.
JOHN 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
The Word of God is the truth.
“He shall not speak of himself”. No preacher can contradict Scripture in any way with his own opinion.
The Holy Spirit must give each individual a personal insight that can be proven just from the Bible. If we only believe in the Bible, we will all have the same belief. No matter who the preacher is.
EPHESIANS 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.
The husband is the head of the wife. This is symbolic of Christ being the Head of the church. And Jesus Christ is the Word of God. Jesus alone is the Saviour of the church body.
No human leader can claim to be the head of the church as he cannot save anyone.
EPHESIANS 5:24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
Therefore, the church individuals must be subject to everything the Bible says.
A wife must be subject to her own husband.
The church must be totally subject to the Word of God.
The Husband of each individual who forms the church is Christ, the Word. We only obey our Husband when we obey Scripture. Thus a preacher only helps us to be obedient to Jesus when he explains the Scriptures.
We cease to follow the Word when we listen to personal opinions or church traditions.
JOHN 6:66 From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.
Notice the 666. This is where the Mark of the Beast starts. Being brainwashed in the mind, which operates in the brain in the forehead, makes us follow unscriptural human leaders.
I TIMOTHY 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
The Man Jesus is the only Mediator between each individual person and the supernatural Spirit of God.
And Jesus is the Word. We can only get right with God by following and believing what is written in Scripture.
We have to place Scripture above any human opinion. There must be no man between an individual person and God.
Our own relationship with Christ requires hard work. We must keep trying to improve this relationship whereby Jesus becomes our Ultimate Leader.
The Rights of People
People’s rights greatly emphasise self-interest as they avidly seek their own rights.
"People’s rights" got launched internationally in 1948.
Now about 400 different rights are being demanded as people become increasingly self-centred. There is simply not enough money to pay for all these rights. Different places choose to emphasise different rights.
Once you have demanded your rights, you cannot deny other people the right to demand their rights. Which rights get granted because there is not enough money to pay for all the rights? Many leaders feel they have the right to loot their country's money. That is why President Putin is so rich.
Armed men and terrorists demand the right for their power to grow out of the barrel of a gun.
Violence has displaced over 130 million people who have lost the right to have their own homes.
Women demand the right to have abortions, which contradicts their child's right to have a life.
This happens about 50 million times yearly, a wholesale massacre.
This has frightening implications for Judgement Day because the Bible forbids us to kill.
EXODUS 20:13 Thou shalt not kill.
So, the issue of human rights is also very contentious and ultimately void of real meaning, leading to constant uncertainty and extreme anxiety.
Sales of anti-depressants are soaring.
President Putin of Russia demands the right to feel safe from NATO and the right to protect Russian minorities in Ukraine, so he invades Ukraine in 2022 and claims the right to destroy cities with their women, children, and civilians. Russian soldiers rape and loot and commit war crimes. That is the traditional right claimed by conquerors. But that contradicts the right of the Ukraine people to live a peaceful life.
Putin claims the right to kill the people of Ukraine but then claims that their right to defend themselves is negotiable and unacceptable. Self-interest has totally perverted his concepts of what people’s rights are.
People’s rights easily slide into issues that directly contradict Scripture.
People legally marry, then divorce, and then claim the right to marry another person.
MARK 10:11 And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her.
:12 And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery.
Gay communities demand the right to same-sex marriages.
Thus, they demand the right to contradict and corrupt Scripture legally.
This is because they placed their own desires above the desires of God.
ROMANS 1:24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:
:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie,
and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator,
who is blessed for ever. Amen.
:26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
:27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.
:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
The Bible thus condemns homosexuality or sodomy.
What the Bible says is God's rights for human behaviour.
Error causes changes in meaning or emphasis of a word
A very subtle error is to change the meaning of a word.
Another clever mistake is to over-emphasize a word.
Church preachers claim the right to replace truth with their own personal errors by changing the meanings of words.
Gay used to mean happy. Now it means homosexual.
Daniel 9:27 speaks of confirming a covenant for 7 years. That covenant had to be previously made.
Church preachers changed it to making a 7-year covenant with the Jews that would be broken. But a confirmed covenant cannot be broken.
Some preachers blur the differences between men and women, leading to gender choice and identity uncertainties.
Message preachers who follow William Branham blur the difference between a future event and the present tense revelation of the future event.
AMOS 3:7 Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.
God has to reveal the opening of the Seven Seals to us first, and only after that will He break them open in Heaven during the Wedding Supper of the Lamb.
Part of the Seals refers to past events, and part of the Seals refers to future events. Some of the revelations refer to events from the past, and Message preachers misinterpret that to mean that the Seven Seals were opened in the past. The Seven Seals could not have been broken (or opened) in the past because some of the revelations still lie in the future.
You cannot open a Seal without first breaking it. Breaking a Seal is what opens it.
The First Seal opens with a single Thunder which still remains a future mystery.
The “shout” of the Message is also in the future.
The shout was not brother Branham revealing his Message from Scripture. The shout will be when the Bride individuals can prove his Message from Scripture.
The following quote was made one month before brother Branham's death.
He was still looking for the shout and the single Thunder in the future.
1965-1127 I HAVE HEARD BUT NOW I SEE
Dear God, in this solemn moment, it's going to be a time like this when there really will be a clap of thunder someday, and the Son of God shall descend from the heavens with a shout, with the voice of the Archangel, and the trump of God, the dead in Christ shall rise.
If the single Thunder has not happened, the First Seal has not opened.
Brother Branham saw a vision of the opening of the First Seal, which revealed what the First Seal is about. It will only literally open when the Bride stands around the throne of God in Heaven in Revelation Chapters 5 and 6.
Brother Branham never saw the Seventh Seal open in his visions. That remained a total secret.
64-0719 THE FEAST OF THE TRUMPETS
The Seventh Seal hasn't opened yet, you know. That's His Coming.
Only Moses and Elijah can open the Sixth Seal because it requires a total interruption of Nature during the 3.5 years of great Tribulation.
63-0323 THE SIXTH SEAL
Elijah, he knows how to do it; he's done it before. Amen. Moses knows how to do it. He's done it before. That's the reason they was kept back. Now... Amen.
... and have power over the waters to turn them to blood and to smite the earth with plagues as oft as they will.
What is it? What can bring these things but the Word? They can do nature any way they want to. Here it is.
They're the one who brings on this Sixth Seal. They uncover and open it up. It's the power of God to interrupt nature. See, the Sixth Seal, is completely an interruption of nature.
Do you get it now? There's your Seal.
Who does it? It's the prophets the other side of the rapture.
With the power of God, the Word of God, they just condemn nature. They can send earthquakes, turn the moon into blood, the sun can go down or anything at their command. Amen.
There you are. There you are. See? See how the Seals opened down there in the church age, how it showed the martyrs? And now here's these two prophets standing here with the Word of God to do anything to nature they want to, and they shake the earth. And it shows exactly who does it.
It's Moses and Elijah,
'cause there's their ministry re-impersonated again: both men. Oh, my. Do you see it now?
See what the Sixth Seal is? It's those prophets.
Don't let it choke you, but watch what opened that Seal: prophets.
See? Amen. There you are. Oh, we're living in the eagle day, brother, head up among the clouds.
They opened that Sixth Seal. They have power to do it. Amen.
There's your Sixth Seal coming open. See?
Only Moses and Elijah can open the Sixth Seal. Brother Branham had a revelation of the Sixth Seal, but only Moses and Elijah can actually open the Sixth Seal.
The Seven Seals open while the Bride is in Heaven at the Wedding Supper. At that time, the two prophets to Israel are on earth during great Tribulation, which is why they are able to open the Sixth Seal.
Brother Branham, as a prophet, saw the future opening of the Seven Seals in a series of visions. He came back from these visions of the future and preached on what he saw. Thus, he described the future events in Heaven when the Lamb will break open the Seven Seals and tell us their contents.
Message preachers have spread much error by claiming that the Revelation of the Seven Seals, which describes the opening of most of the Seals, is the actual Opening of all the Seven Seals.
The printed sermons were not called the Opening of the Seven Seals.
They were called the Revelation of the Seven Seals.
The Seven Seals will actually open when the Bride is in Heaven around the throne of Jesus.
Today, preachers emphasise personal happiness, which is held up to be the goal in life. This denies the various tribulations we must face and overcome to escape the 3.5 years of great Tribulation.
ACTS 14:22 Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith,
and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.
People’s rights can produce unintended consequences.
Wanting to combat climate change and pollution, Germany closed down their nuclear power stations and relied on natural gas from Russia. In 2022 they depended on buying Russian gas, especially for winter heating. Thus in 2022, Germany essentially financed and prolonged Russia’s cruel war on Ukraine by importing Russian energy.
Consider the pastor's office, which traditionally makes him the head of the church.
The word “pastors” is only mentioned once in the New Testament; thus, a pastor has no Bible-authority to be the head of a church.
This unscriptural elevation was caused by changing the emphasis from a pastor's work to a pastor's office.
The work of a pastor is simply pastoral care.
Helping people with the many problems they face in their personal lives or with their faith.
Doing the work of a pastor can be done by any elder with experience in that particular problem area.
But by emphasizing the office of a pastor, which is never clarified in the Bible, the man is suddenly elevated to an unscriptural position as the head of the church. This was never done in the New Testament where each local church was ruled by local elders.
ACTS 20:17 And from Miletus he [Paul] sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church.
:18 And when they were come to him, he said unto them, …
:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
Peter said the same thing.
I PETER 5:1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
:2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
:3 Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.
A lord has power over people. But power corrupts.
Putting one man in charge of a church results in him requiring the people to be loyal to himself and his opinions. Then there is a tendency for him to eliminate any opposition so that he can act without constraint or correction. In addition, by claiming to be the head of the church, the pastor unscripturally lays claim to the tithes.
Access to money makes ambitious people jockey for power and pursue their own agendas.
Having one man as the head of the church is just another milestone on the church’s path to ruin. Human leaders have split the churches into 45000 different types of churches or denominations. All are different, but each claims to be correct.
Consequently, no parable or prophecy concerning the end-time church says anything good about the church.
The “elders” put the emphasis on the work that they did, not on any official office that they held.
Peter did the same thing.
He did not stress his office as an apostle. He regarded himself just as an elder who was doing work for God, and thus saw himself as equal to the other elders.
Hostility is the attitude toward Bible truth
When people begin to get strictly Scriptural, the modern-day church systems make the big mistake of opposing them by attacking their characters, not their doctrines. The foolish virgin church-goers do not know enough Scripture to prove their beliefs. So they character-assassinate those who want to be Scriptural.Thus they try to prove that those who are Scriptural are bad people. Then they feel that they can ignore those "bad" people and also ignore the Scriptures that they were explaining.
They forget that in the parable of the rich man's supper, the good people turned down his invitation. Then he called in the ruffians from the highways and hedges. So, it was the bad people who made it in the end. Because they are Scriptural.
Not knowing the Bible truth is bad. But opposing the Bible truth is far worse.
There is no end-time prophecy concerning the church nor any parable concerning the end-time church that does not either criticise or condemn the church.
The final church spoken of in Revelation Chapter 3 states that Jesus stands outside the church door. In other words, Jesus is the Word of God, and the Scripture is not wanted in the church.
Unscriptural church traditions like Trinity, Christmas, 25 December, Good Friday, divorce and remarry, and calling William Branham the Voice of God have taken over various churches.
Jesus is not standing at the door of the sinner’s heart, He is standing at the door of the church.
This concerns every church because He mentions no exceptions.
REVELATION 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write;
REVELATION 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice,
God is no longer dealing with any church as a group. God is looking for individuals now.
Thus, the churches are very opposed to God’s last move of individuals coming out of the church as that threatens the church's credibility and the financial income of the head of the church.
Fellowship between these isolated individuals and their families can now happen over the internet.
Jesus insulted the Jewish religious leaders by calling them hypocrites and vipers (poisonous snakes). They took that indignity, but it was only when He chased out the money-makers from the Temple on Palm Sunday and again on the next day, Monday, that they killed Him on Thursday.
In the end, the attitude of the church people to the revealed Word of God is as follows.
MATTHEW 24:9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
Affliction involves persecution and rejection. Character assassination.
Church people hate the idea of baptizing in the name of Jesus Christ as it destroys their Trinity doctrine. The Trinity God has no name and hides behind the titles of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost as if three titles are a name. This is a delusian.
But the Trinity doctrine has been cleverly built up over hundreds of years, and the churches hate seeing that idea demolished.
MATTHEW 24:10 And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
Church-goers hate it when a person uses Scripture to contradict a church doctrine.
Then they attack the character of the person rather than his beliefs by calling him bitter. Thereby they do their best to destroy his credibility as a bad person. This is the safest attack as their own ignorance of Scripture is not exposed.
They hate the truth because they do not want to admit they are wrong.
If they admit that, then they have a lot of hard work ahead of them in order to learn the truth.
They are too lazy to take that option.
MATTHEW 24:11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
People look for group-security or safety in numbers. They desperately want to believe that their church is the correct one because then they do not have to seek further for the truth. As a result, they readily follow a self-assured leader who claims to know where he is going.
Message preachers who follow William Branham all-too-often do not prove his quotes from Scripture. They just interpret certain quotes in some way and thus do not need to study the Bible. Bible-illiteracy increases when only a superficial knowledge of the Bible is considered acceptable.
MATTHEW 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
True Bible teachers are no longer welcome in the churches as they contradict church traditions.
It takes too much hard work to study the Bible, so church-goers prefer the easier path of just interpreting human quotes and opinions. Church-goers no longer feel the need to be strictly Scriptural.
The love of Scripture has grown cold.
Thus, people believe unscriptural ideas that they know are not written in the Bible, but because everyone else does likewise, it no longer bothers them. They know it is wrong but they do it. That is iniquity.
Everyone believes in Trinity, Good Friday, Christmas, and 25 December even though they are not written in the Bible. Message churches believe that William Branham is infallible and is the Son of man. Brother Branham never claimed that, but many people do, so church-goers go along with the idea even though it does not seem right. Iniquity. They know it is wrong, but they are scared to disagree. They are sadly aware that the nail that sticks up tends to get hammered.
Preachers do not focus on Scriptural truth but on what they wish to be taken for truth.
LAODICEAN CHURCH AGE CHURCH AGE BOOK
Now this last day prophet-messenger will have such power before the Lord that
there will be those who mistake him for the Lord Jesus.
64-0830 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS.3
To make me the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ, would be an antichrist
MATTHEW 24:13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
We are not saved from hell by endurance. We were saved from hell when we first repented at the start of our Christian walk. What we need to be saved from today is the oncoming great Tribulation.
The struggle between being strictly Scriptural or complacently following-my-church-leader will continue to the end.
Very few will discern the truth from the Bible and be prepared for the Coming of the Lord.
MATTHEW 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
MATTHEW 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
The Gospel must go out to all the world.
The Gospel starts with repentance. That saves us from hell. Then we also have to be saved from the 3.5 years of great Tribulation. The end-time prophet William Branham came to reveal the mysteries of Scripture to us. Thus, what is different today is that God expects saved Christians to have a good understanding of the revealed Word of God, the King James Version of the Bible.
The revelation of the mysteries of the Bible has to take us back to the beliefs of the first church. This is the mystery of God.
The seed that is harvested in the latter rain has to be the same as the seed that was planted by the apostles in the first church age.
The only way to get the Gospel of the revealed Bible mysteries out to the world is by using a website on the internet. Preferably with translations in different languages. Then anybody can learn from that website at any time.
The wise virgin Bride individuals have to be able to read and understand the Bible mysteries. That will be their final shout.
65-1127 I HAVE HEARD BUT NOW I SEE
Dear God, in this solemn moment, it's going to be a time like this when there really will be a clap of thunder someday,
and the Son of God shall descend from the heavens with a shout,
with the voice of the Archangel, and the trump of God, the dead in Christ shall rise.
This sermon was preached one month before he died.
He was still looking for the mysterious "shout" in the future.
The “shout” was not brother Branham proving his Message from Scripture. The “shout” will be when the Bride individuals can prove the truth of what brother Branham preached just from the Bible.
62-1111 WHY I'M AGAINST ORGANIZED RELIGION
Notice, the 19th chapter is the next, "After these things." Did you notice here in the 19th chapter, "After these things"? Watch what?
After the Message of "Come out of her!"
"After these things," watch,
"is the shout of the Bride saints, with the Bridegroom,
going to the Marriage of the Lamb."
The shout is made by the Bride in the end.
A mighty angel or messenger was promised to reveal the Bible's truth. Brother Branham's ministry fits this description.
REVELATION 18:1 And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory.
The supernatural power of his ministry was spectacular. His understanding of Scripture was incredibly deep and illuminated the Bible mysteries.
REVELATION 18:2 And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.
Babylon is the centrally organized denominational system of the Roman Catholic Church, which the Protestant and non-Catholic churches have imitated. God hates it when a man is the head of a church.
“Is fallen, is fallen”. The Catholic churches are fallen, and the non-Catholic or Protestant churches are also fallen away from the Bible beliefs of the early church.
REVELATION 18:3 For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.
A woman represents a church. Fornication means she has no husband and is just fooling around with man-made ideas.
Wine is the stimulation of revelation. Offering the church-goers a stimulating mixture of some Bible truths and many man-made church errors.
But the church has become Big Business.
Ambitious men have been elevated above the congregation and grown rich. Pastors focus on power and money. Their power to take your money.
The church cannot be cured. We must get out of the church.
REVELATION 18:4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.
Another voice tells us to come out. This is not the voice of the angel-messenger. This is the inner voice of the Holy Spirit speaking to individuals.
A woman represents a church. A virgin is a clean woman. The ten virgins in the parable of Matthew Chapter 25 thus describe saved Christians in the church systems. Some are wise and have enough oil to burn and produce sufficient light to read and understand the revealed mysteries of the Bible. The others are foolish because they are easily fooled by preachers and their unscriptural ideas. They do not have enough light to realise that what they believe is not written in the Bible. For example, they believe that William Branham is the Voice of God when there is no such Scripture in the New Testament. He is the voice of the seventh angel.
MATTHEW 25:5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.
All the virgins, all the saved Christians in the churches, are fast asleep. Complacently lulled by the soothing voices of their preachers who mix truth with error.
MATTHEW 25:6 And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.
But this wake-up call or cry is coming.
Probably a very severe earthquake that will cripple the world’s debt-ridden economy like when Los Angeles sinks into the sea.
Our materialistic society will possibly need an economic collapse of some sort to shake up everyone.
Only then will they realise the inadequacy of the church that they are currently in.
MATTHEW 24:7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
In the last 110 or so years, nations have fought two world wars. Nations were big and powerful enough with their empires to involve the world in their wars. Then the more limited wars like Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, and the 2022 Ukraine war against Russia are reasonably confined to one kingdom. In addition, there have been all the civil wars to achieve independence for each kingdom or region.
The COVID-19 pandemic that started in 2020 is an economic and health pestilence. It has greatly increased the debt burden of many nations and people.
The Russian-Ukraine war produces severe shortages and price increases to batter our economic systems further.
Finally, we can expect severe earthquakes in places that will have huge financial implications for our debt-ridden society.
Notice the midnight “cry”, which symbolizes anguish.
The cry tells everyone to get out of whatever church they are in.
So, the day will come when you get a sufficiently severe shock to make you realise that your church is a trap of deception.
Then, will you know enough of the Bible to be able to find the full truth?
MATTHEW 25:7 Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
It will be lamp-trimming time. Cutting off all the dead carbon from the wick.
Sheer fright will make your life strictly Scriptural. Will you have enough time to unlearn your church errors and re-learn the truths of the early church of the apostles?
Your life will depend on that decision.
If you will not be able to learn the truth in time, then you will be thrown into great Tribulation where you will be killed by the Beast, the final Pope.
The pitfall of trying to serve God when not in His Will
We have to be very careful when we replace truth with zeal.
Obedience to Scripture is essential.
The church Body has to obey the Head Who is Jesus Christ, the Word of God. No man is the head of any church.
ROMANS 1:5 By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:
The disciples only became apostles because they were obedient to the Bible faith. Not spreading their own ideas and opinions.
I SAMUEL 15:22 And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD?
Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice,
and to hearken than the fat of rams.
The Bible is the voice of the Lord. Brother Branham is the voice of the seventh angel.
So, we use the quotes of the seventh angel in order to gain a revelation of the King James Bible which is the Voice of the Lord or the Voice of God. Only when we obey Scripture is God pleased with us.
There is too much error in us humans for us to be able to figure out what God wants us to do.
PROVERBS 16:25 There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.
JEREMIAH 10:23 O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.
JOB 15:15 Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints;
David wanted to bring the Ark of the Covenant back to Jerusalem in the Old Testament.
This was a great idea and showed much zeal, respect and worship towards God. Everyone approved of the idea.
But there was one problem. The excellent idea produced death.
So much for human willingness to do God a service when it is not done according to His Word.
I CHRONICLES 13:6 And David went up, and all Israel, to Baalah, that is, to Kirjathjearim, which belonged to Judah, to bring up thence the ark of God the LORD, that dwelleth between the cherubims, whose name is called on it.
The intentions were good. The ark of the covenant was a large wooden box.
A new cart was prepared. The people thought up a new way of serving God. Just like modern churches having hypnotic drum beats to whip up the praise and worship in the church.
Even though a drum is never mentioned in the Bible.
I CHRONICLES 13:7 And they carried the ark of God in a new cart out of the house of Abinadab: and Uzza and Ahio drave the cart.
I CHRONICLES 13:8 And David and all Israel played before God with all their might, with singing, with harps, with psalteries, with timbrels, and with cymbals, and with trumpets.
Now human zeal took over. Surely God had to be impressed with their praise and worship. Five different types of instruments burst forth with beautiful music. Enthusiastic singing lifted praises to Heaven. What a tremendous revival. They were so pleased with their own emotional performance.
I CHRONICLES 13:9 And when they came unto the threshing-floor of Chidon, Uzza put forth his hand to hold the ark; for the oxen stumbled.
Chidon means a dart. A dart is a small, sharp spear that can kill.
Only God can place a Bible teacher who can put his hand to the Word since he is capable of explaining the revealed mysteries of Scripture.
David had disobeyed God’s Will for moving the ark, and the word “dart” meant someone had to die.
Who? Any man who put his hand to the ark (representing God’s Word) who God had not called to do so.
A threshing floor is where the chaff is beaten off the wheat.
There comes a time when we have to thrash out what we are saying or doing and compare it with the Word to see if we are in God’s Will (the wheat seed) or just obeying some church leader (the lifeless chaff that covered the seed and looked like the seed for a while).
There are four beasts around God’s throne in Heaven.
REVELATION 4:7 And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle.
A lion (the true Word given by the early apostles) represents the first two church ages that lasted about 280 years, from AD 33 to AD 312.
The third and fourth church ages lasted just over 1200 years, from AD 312 to 1520, when Luther began the Reformation. This was plenty of time for the calf that grew up to become a strong ox as the beast of slaughter in the long centuries of the Dark Ages when the Bible truth was killed and tens of millions of Christians were slain. Christians had to be very strong in those days.
Let us return to David's great revival.
David’s first mistake was ignorance.
He did not realize that an ox symbolized the truth getting lost in the Dark Ages. This was represented by the oxen stumbling.
I CHRONICLES 13:10 And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzza, and he smote him, because he put his hand to the ark: and there he died before God.
David was a great king but he was carrying the ark the wrong way.
Error made the oxen stumble. Uzza tried to do God a favour by stopping the ark from falling. Uzzah put his hand to the ark. That represented him trying to give his interpretation to explain the Word.
The spiritual Beast of the New Testament represents human church heads trying to interpret Scripture in a way that suits their denominational or church idea of a church organization. Or just their own personal bright ideas.
HEBREWS 12:20 (For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a dart:
If a beast touched God’s Holy Mountain where Moses got the Word of God, then that beast was killed by a dart.
Uzza was killed, so he represented the slain beast.
Thus, the real enemy Beast is when a man who is in the driver’s seat and controls the church, puts his hand to interpreting the Word of God as he tries to do God a favour. This is the nature of the Beast.
The Beast is the centralized denominational system of organized church systems that have elevated a human leader to be the head of each church. This system was developed by the Roman Catholic church.
Non-Catholic churches imitate and copy this system of organized religion as they form the image of the beast, especially in America, as shown in Revelation Chapter 13.
REVELATION 13:15 And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.
Money is the lifeblood of organization. When enough money comes in, a new church organization forms with one man as its head as that is an efficient business model for church growth. The churches are involved in power games. Mainly the power to take people’s money.
America has more money and more full time preachers than any other country, by far. American church leaders spread their influence by paying other people in other countries to believe their version of Scripture.
If a church leader who may be a priest, reverend, minister, or pastor speaks with church-authority to condemn or character assassinate a Bible teacher, then the church members reject and condemn the Bible teacher. Thus, the church cannot be taught the truth because of the structure of the church system. And Jesus has to stand outside the church because He is the Word that nobody listens to anymore.
HEBREWS 12:21 And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:)
Putting a human hand to the Word of God means a preacher giving his opinion of the written Word. This is a terrible sin in God’s eyes. But church-goers have lost the fear of God’s truth as they complacently listen to human traditions and guesses as to the meaning of Scripture.
I CHRONICLES 13:11 And David was displeased, because the LORD had made a breach upon Uzza: wherefore that place is called Perezuzza to this day.
David was upset because God was not happy with all David’s great efforts.
I CHRONICLES 13:12 And David was afraid of God that day, saying, How shall I bring the ark of God home to me?
The ark should have been carried on two poles by four men.
Each man carried the pole on their left shoulder.
Thus, they had the burden of the Word over their hearts.
They carried the Ark because they loved the Word of God. They did not carry the Word for position, or for power, or for money.
ECCLESIASTES 7:20 For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.
We humans do not know the right way and must thus rely on Scripture for guidance. The Word must lead.
JUDGES 21:25 In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
Each person thinks that their church is right.
Each preacher thinks that he is right.
REVELATION 3:22 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
But it is the Holy Spirit speaking to us through the written Scriptures that we should be listening to, not some head of the church.
We must believe in Jesus as the Word of God, not some human opinion.
JOHN 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Only Jesus can save us.
What you say about the King James Bible is what you say about Jesus.
So, never criticize the King James Bible. Rather pray for understanding of what is written in the Bible.
Believers have to be called out by God
HEBREWS 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.
I PETER 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
Where is God calling us to go today?
The call is to get out of the churches that have been organized by human traditions and opinions.
REVELATION 18:4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying,
Come out of her, my people,
that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.
The church is one body that has got many members from different nations.
I CORINTHIANS 12:12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.
:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.
God must set the members in the body. We must not favour our friends nor our family members.
I CORINTHIANS 12:18 But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.
Each individual has his or her place in God’s universal church.
I CORINTHIANS 12:27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.
I CORINTHIANS 12:28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
God has set some to minister, not all.
There is no mention of pastors. So a church with a pastor as its head is not part of God’s plan or purpose.
Apostles wrote the New Testament. Prophets wrote the Old Testament. Then the end-time prophet to the Gentile church, William Branham, revealed the mysteries of Scripture. God then set teachers in the church who could combine the Old and the New Testaments as they run brother Branham’s revelations through the Bible. They can thus prove the truth of his revelations just by using the King James Version of the Bible.
I CORINTHIANS 12:29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?
Not all are teachers who can prove the mysteries just from Scripture. It is a special gift.
EPHESIANS 4:7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
The gift of teaching, given by God’s grace, enables a person to prove what Brother Branham preached by running the revelation through both the New and Old Testaments. Very few men can do that because it is a gift God has to give a man. You cannot just decide to be a teacher as you are very likely to develop false doctrines in your own wisdom.
EPHESIANS 4:8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
Pastors are needed for pastoral care, which involves counselling people with their problems and their walk with the Lord. Evangelists are needed to convict people to serve God.
But pastors and evangelists need to learn sound Bible doctrine from the teachers. Then they can better advise the people with whom they interact.
Antioch was a leading church at one time.
Notice their emphasis on teachers. Niger and Lucius came from Africa.
Sound teaching was the foundation of the success of the early church.
ACTS 13:1 Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.
Saul became Paul and was the greatest of all Bible teachers in the early church. He was a tent maker. As a teacher, he sewed together Law and Grace and sewed the New Testament into the shadow or outline of the Old Testament so that the New Testament fulfilled the Old Testament. No doctrine is true until it is revealed in both Testaments. That is the ministry of a teacher.
Then evangelists and pastors can take that deeper truth to guide the people down the right path and not get them to repeat the mistakes of the churches who chose a man to be the head of each church.
EPHESIANS 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
We have the New Testament of the apostles and the Old Testament of the prophets. We have the revelation of the mysteries of the Bible thanks to the ministry of the end-time prophet William Branham. Teachers must prove brother Branham’s ideas by running them through both Testaments of the Bible. Then evangelists convict people with these Bible truths, and pastors can Biblically counsel people without corrupting the deeper Bible revelations.
EPHESIANS 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
Evangelists and pastors are good at dealing with people but need to learn the deeper truths from Bible teachers. Otherwise, the church splits into numerous different splinter groups that all believe different unscriptural things.
Pastors are not Bible teachers.
With pastors as the so-called head of the church, the Message-churches have now formed over 100 different varieties or mutations. Just like a mutating virus with new variations that keep emerging that cannot be proven from Scripture.
ROMANS 12:6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;
God gifts different people in different ways. Each person must stay within the limits that God has given them and acknowledge the gifts that others have been given.
ROMANS 12:7 Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching;
Whatever ministry a person has, they must wait on God before they try to invent some new doctrines to justify their existence.
Teaching is mentioned separately. It is a difficult and dangerous ministry that easily goes wrong. It takes a huge amount of hard work to study all of the Bible as well as studying brother Branham’s sermons.
You have to be able to spot where he makes mistakes and where he contradicts himself.
Plus you need a good knowledge of the history of the Jews and also the history of Rome and of the 7 church ages.
Basic scientific facts are essential so that we are not fooled by people’s misunderstanding of the two clouds photographed over Flagstaff on 28 February 1963. Brother Branham was unaware of the second cloud, made by an exploding rocket. But it was there because many photographs were taken of the two clouds.
One supernatural cloud and the other smaller smoke cloud.
Peter very cleverly changed Joel's prophecy of signs high in the heaven.
ACTS 2:19 And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:
1963 saw assassinated President Kennedy's blood all over his wife's dress which shocked the world.
1963 saw America remove the Bible from schools.
The Catholic Kennedy and the Pope both died in 1963. The year that brother Branham revealed the Seven Seals. Scripture is Light, and as such, It destroys darkness.
1963 saw Kennedy begin to start increasing the presence of Americans in the war in Vietnam. This led to the Vietnam war being escalated under Lyndon Johnson in 1965.
The blood and fire were on earth.
"Vapour of smoke".
Water vapour makes a rain cloud.
So, smoke vapour makes a smoke cloud.
There has to be a high-altitude smoke cloud to fulfil this Scripture.
The supernatural cloud was the sign of the Son of man in the heaven (the upper atmosphere).
65-0718 TRYING TO DO GOD A SERVICE WITHOUT BEING THE WILL OF GOD
And then in that great observatory, so that the world will be without, they're still wondering what happened. In Tucson, them big observatories took the picture of it up there; still wondering what happened. What is it? They still put in the paper, "Does anybody know anything about what, how it could have happen?" There is no fog up there, there's no air, there's no moisture; thirty miles high in the air. Oh, my!
"There shall be signs in the heaven above. And when these things take place, earthquakes in divers places,
then shall appear the sign in the heaven, of the Son of man."
"That day," in Luke, "the Son of man will reveal Himself again; being revealed, Hisself." And the world will look like Sodom and Gomorrah. Oh, my!
The main cloud was made of angel's wings. It was the sign of the Son of man in the heaven.
It was a sign in the heaven to attract attention. God was going to do something.
God gave a natural sign of a bush that supernaturally burned without being consumed to Moses to start the first Exodus.
God used a natural cloud and a supernatural cloud as a sign in the heaven that He was going to start the third Exodus, the Bride coming out of the churches.
Eight days later, the same 7 angels came invisibly to meet brother Branham at Sunset Peak, which is 200 miles south of Flagstaff. They formed no cloud on that day. They gave him the commission to go back to Jeffersonville to reveal the Seven Seals. The 7 angels then left invisibly.
The Revelation of the Seven Seals was the great event. Understanding the Seven Seals would allow the Bride to be able to understand the hidden mysteries of Scripture. The Bride could then return to the beliefs of the first church age.
Teaching requires much research. Much patience. Much waiting and searching before all the facts fit into place.
JAMES 3:1 My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.
A master is a schoolmaster, a teacher.
Those who have developed wrong doctrines will bitterly regret it later. Those who teach error will be punished much harder.
63-0724 GOD DOESN'T CALL MAN TO JUDGMENT WITHOUT FIRST WARNING HIM
But, you see, in the church there is the pastor, and that pastor is a special person. He's built to where he can put up with the fusses of the people. He's a burden-bearer, he's the ox of the team. He's a man that can sit down when somebody's got something against somebody else, and sit down with them two families (and take neither side) and reason it out and bring it right back into sweetness. See? He's a pastor, he knows how to take care of things.
The evangelist is a special man. He's a man that's burning like a fireball. He runs into a city and preaches his message, then gets out of there somewhere else. See, he's a special man.
The teacher is a special man. He sits back under the anointing of the Spirit and is able to take the Words and put them together by the Holy Spirit, that, the pastor or evangelist either one could not compare with him.
Emphasize the work not the office
II CORINTHIANS 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Human weakness allows God’s grace to triumph.
God uses people, but God does not need people. God can triumph without us if He wanted to.
So, despite our weakness, God still chooses to operate through people.
II CORINTHIANS 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
God’s grace will triumph, not human effort and talent.
II TIMOTHY 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
The main emphasis is on being Scriptural. This is the work that has to be done by any ministry. There is no mention of any office to elevate the preacher. The act of Scriptural preaching is what is important, not any position or office that the preacher might hold.
Paul mentions about 27 people by name in the last Chapter of Romans but never mentions any office except for two men who were of note among the apostles.
II TIMOTHY 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
Now comes the weakness of the church. People want to believe certain errors that suit them, and will choose teachers who agree with those unscriptural errors. These teachers are not Bible teachers as they do not teach just from Scripture.
II TIMOTHY 4:4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
There are 45000 different kinds of denominations and churches today because so many false teachers have spread so many unscriptural beliefs.
II TIMOTHY 4:5 But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions,
do the work of an evangelist,
make full proof of thy ministry.
Timothy is never called an evangelist. But the fact that he gets out and speaks to people means he is doing the work of an evangelist.
What is important is the work that is being done, not the stress on the office of the evangelist.
So, anyone does the work of an evangelist when that person strives to lead a soul to Christ.
Equally, anyone does the work of a pastor when they spend time counselling people to help them overcome their problems and difficulties. The stress is not on the office of a pastor (which is never clarified in Scripture) but rather on doing the work of a pastor, which is counselling a person by helping an individual to find ways to work through and understand their problems. Counselling involves talking to a person or persons about issues that they are facing in a confidential and non-judgemental manner.
Peter describes the effective oversight of a local church by the local elders, not by one man.
I PETER 5:1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
Peter does not mention his office as an apostle, even though he was the first apostle that Jesus chose.
I PETER 5:2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
Elders must be keen to lead the church, and they must not want to do so to earn money. Their desire must be to help the people with their problems and guide the individuals into an understanding of the mysteries of the Bible because that is what the end-time church needs to know to be ready for the Second Coming of Jesus.
The individual believers are the church
The church is not a building, it is the people.
The people do not have to be gathered together to be the church. They still are the church even when they are not gathered together.
Before Christians can be in meaningful fellowship with each other, they must first be in a meaningful fellowship with God. But Jesus is God Who is the great Holy Spirit.
I CORINTHIANS 1:9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
People can only fellowship successfully when they all first have a deeper fellowship with Jesus.
Our deepest motives and intentions must first be the love of God.
The God that we see is the Author of the King James Bible which is His Word.
If you do not believe that the King James Bible is the Absolute and Infallible truth, then you do not have a very deep relationship with Jesus. The Bible tells us the thoughts of God, and if we are not in awe of all of His thoughts, then our fellowship with Him is shallow.
We must love and obey all the thinking in the King James Bible.
I JOHN 1:3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.
Jesus is the Word of God. The Word of God expresses the thoughts of God the Father. His thoughts are perfect and much higher than our thoughts. So, never criticize the Bible.
People can only have a basis for fellowship if they believe that the Bible is perfect. They must have a love of truth which makes them teachable and happy to admit their mistakes if they differ from the Bible in any way.
When saved people are reluctant to accept correction from the Scripture, then they join the foolish virgins. They become make-believers as there are certain Bible truths that they do not want to believe.
That is not true fellowship.
I JOHN 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
We have to be in the Light of the Word of God. Agreeing on Scripture is the only true fellowship. People with other agendas cannot find the full truth.
II THESSALONIANS 2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish;
because they received not the love of the truth,
that they might be saved.
:11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
If we do not love the truth more than anything else, then our thoughts are clouded with self-gain in some way, and we will be fooled by our delusions. This kind of fellowship is insincere.
PHILIPPIANS 2:1 If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies,
Fellowship is only meaningful between people when they share a love of the truth and an obedience to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Because the Holy Spirit always guides us towards the truth by guiding us towards an understanding of Scripture.
JOHN 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself;
People who search for the truth put no emphasis in self. Self-glory is vain glory.
PHILIPPIANS 2:2 Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
:3 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
Humility is the key to fellowship. No one should think that they are above someone else.
A group of people meeting together is not fellowship because you get three kinds of people being present. Unbelievers do not really believe the Word of God and make-believers only believe the bits of Scripture that suit them. They are quite happy to believe unscriptural ideas when it suits them.
65-0426 PROVING HIS WORD
There is always them three classes. Ham, Shem, Japheth's people. Also, believers, make-believers, and unbelievers.
They're everywhere, and we find them in every group.
And, everywhere, you find them. And that groups is still here.
A group of people meeting together in a building is not true fellowship as they are a mixture of believers who have died to themselves and also make-believers with well-hidden selfish agendas. Plus some unbelievers.
64-0614 THE UNVEILING OF GOD
It brings back to the same thing, in every congregation, you have make-believers, unbelievers, and believers. It's been in every congregation. You find them all the time.
Some of them make out like they're believers, that's the worst of type.
And then they have those who are actually unbelievers; he won't bother you, he'll just walk away and shake his head.
But those who make-believe, say they're believers, that's the kind, that's the kind you have to watch, is those make-believers.
And then there is some genuine believers. See them three there?
There was the unbelievers. As soon as He said, "Eat the Flesh of the Son of man," oh, man, that was it!
The others was make-believers. They stayed till, just like Judas did, right up to the end.
But then the real believers, they couldn't explain It, but they believed It, anyhow. They went on through.
The veil, tradition of unbelievers, taken away, you see God.
When the veil of traditions has been removed, you can see that God is still God of His Word.
Fellowship is still possible when people are far apart.
Though far apart physically, people can still be united spiritually.
I CORINTHIANS 5:3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,
The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 speeded up the development of programs like Zoom that enabled individuals to interact with each other when far apart.
The internet now cuts across space and allows any two or three (or more) people to fellowship with each other.
Having the same Spirit and the same love of Scripture is more important for genuine fellowship than being in the same room as other people who praise God enthusiastically but do not believe that the King James Bible is perfect.
Instead, they believe brother Branham is infallible and cannot get his facts confused. Thus they fellowship around the perfection of the prophet who they call the Voice of God and the Son of man as they promote him to the Deity.
Church people want a man as the head of the church
Nicolaitans elevated up a human man to be the leader or the head of the church.
The Christians from the first church age hated this idea because they knew that God hated the idea.
REVELATION 2:6 But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.
Being closer to God, they were individually led by the Holy Spirit and did not want any man between them and God.
But then they began to relax and consider the advantages of a human leader. They no longer had to search the Scriptures for themselves. The head of the church simply told them what to do and what to believe. They no longer had to think for themselves. Better still, they no longer had to do all the hard work of searching through the Bible. They just had to believe whatever the elevated head of the church said.
One man in charge of a church was an effective business model for church growth.
So now, they held to the idea of a human head of the church. They wanted it that way. The deeds of an elevated church leader now became an unscriptural doctrine as people wanted one man to rule as a dictator.
REVELATION 2:15 So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate.
The church now wanted something that God still hated. One man as the head of each church. The church head would secure all the money and get rid of any opposition. Thus there was no real way to correct the church.
We see this in the history of the Jews as they wanted the leadership of a king to be like other nations.
I SAMUEL 8:1 And it came to pass, when Samuel was old, that he made his sons judges over Israel.
:2 Now the name of his firstborn was Joel; and the name of his second, Abiah: they were judges in Beersheba.
:3 And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted judgment.
Samuel had been a great prophet, but his two sons were corrupted by money.
The way his sons guided the people was all wrong as they were motivated by enriching themselves.
I SAMUEL 8:4 Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah,
:5 And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.
Samuel was old. Change was in the air. But the Israelites wanted to make the change by copying what the other nations did. They no longer wanted to be the called-out ones. They wanted to be like everyone else.
It was a special form of insanity. They wanted to follow the same pattern as everyone else and yet expect a different result.
The people were rejecting God's Plan of ruling through a prophet.
I SAMUEL 8:7 And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.
:8 According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt even unto this day, wherewith they have forsaken me, and served other gods, so do they also unto thee.
Most church-goers just pretend to serve God as they pursue much deeper personal agendas based on self-gain and the desire to be noticed and be popular and admired.
They forsake the God who desires us to die to self and prefer to follow the false gods who elevate selfishness and popularity.
I SAMUEL 8:9 Now therefore hearken unto their voice: howbeit yet protest solemnly unto them, and shew them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.
God wants Samuel to spell out the fundamental weaknesses of human leadership.
The characteristic of the king, who is the head of the nation, will apply to a church leader who is the head of a church.
I SAMUEL 8:9 Now therefore hearken unto their voice: howbeit yet protest solemnly unto them, and shew them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.
I SAMUEL 8:10 And Samuel told all the words of the LORD unto the people that asked of him a king.
I SAMUEL 8:11 And he said, This will be the manner of the king that shall reign over you: He will take your sons,
and appoint them for himself,
for his chariots, and to be his horsemen; and some shall run before his chariots.
As far as the king (or the church leader) regards himself as the main person, it is all about self. Others are just there to serve his wishes.
I SAMUEL 8:12 And he will appoint him captains over thousands, and captains over fifties; and will set them to ear his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and instruments of his chariots.
The king appoints his yes-men into positions of authority.
They have to serve him.
I SAMUEL 8:13 And he will take your daughters to be confectionaries, and to be cooks, and to be bakers.
The king wants to control everyone.
I SAMUEL 8:14 And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your oliveyards, even the best of them, and give them to his servants.
The head of the church takes in all the money and distributes it to his yes-men and favourites.
I SAMUEL 8:15 And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give to his officers, and to his servants.
A tenth is a tithe. The church head collects the tithes and distributes them to buy the loyalty of his yes-men.
I SAMUEL 8:16 And he will take your menservants, and your maidservants, and your goodliest young men, and your asses, and put them to his work.
Everyone has to do the will of the church head.
I SAMUEL 8:17 He will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be his servants.
You can only work in the church if you obey the head of the church who collects the tithes.
I SAMUEL 8:18 And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen you; and the LORD will not hear you in that day.
Eventually, you will realize that the church is serving the human leader, not God. You have to obey what the leader says, so the Word of God is pushed out of the church. This will cause much inner grief, but Jesus, as the Word of God, will be standing outside the church door. The business of the church will no longer be the business of God. The church under a human leader becomes a trap of deception.
I SAMUEL 8:19 Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us;
I SAMUEL 8:20 That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles.
But the people demanded one man as their boss. They wanted to be like everyone else so that they could be popular. The man in charge must decide on all the issues and fight the battles for us. That way, we just drift along, dependent on the church leader, trusting in human government.
JEREMIAH 5:31 The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?
JEREMIAH 17:5 Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD.
Because people love to be noticed and love to be popular, thus very few will find and follow God's way.
MATTHEW 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
MATTHEW 22:14 For many are called, but few are chosen.
Few are chosen because very few are faithful to the Word of God. They far prefer the praise of human leaders and thus believe men's opinions.
LUKE 12:31 But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.
We must seek the will of God at this end-time when God wants us to come out of the churches with their human leadership.
LUKE 12:32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.
It will be a small flock that finally makes it. Such is the extent of deception in the churches.