Shifting the focus to the light

Organising the church around William Branham is wrong. The focus should shift to the Lord Jesus Christ and his Word.

First published on the 3rd of July 2015 — Last updated on the 18th of August 2018

Undeniable are the wonderful works which were done through William Branham's ministry. The Lord used him mightily in an Elijah-like ministry as He promised He would in Matthew 17:11-12 before His 2nd coming. As a result, a huge following developed over the last half a century despite his tragic death in 1965.   However, the hype from the many miracles and his wonderful character, have roller-coasted into a scene where many have elevated him far above an ordinary human. The Bible warns us this would happen and unfortunately has left many sincere people trapped inside churches that blindly follow a prophet without following the truth in the Bible. It's an antichrist spirit deceiving the people by subtly twisting the meanings of quotes, and replacing the knowledge from the Bible with interpreted words of William Branham.

Paul warns against this:

2 Corithians 12:6  For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool; for I will say the truth: but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me.

The organised movement around William Branham and his ministry is called "The Message". Now many will argue of course  "The Message" is not an organisation and then proceed to give their definition of what "The Message"  really means to them. Some say it's his life, ministry and every word from the sermons he preached. Others say it is the hidden message or the revelation that one should get while a sermon is preached and collectively they make up "The Message".  But in this lies the mystery. "The Message" becomes whatever your own interpretation of it is, whatever sounds righteous and good. Some interpretations are further from the truth than others. If however, something has truth to it, there is a common definition with a common revelation from the Bible. An organisation is defined by the characteristics of the system or systems that govern it. The pastor-dominated churches on the one hand, and the iron fist rule that Voice of God Recordings applies to govern the distribution and translations of Brother Branham's sermons on the other, are typical of well-oiled organisations.

If there were such a thing as "The Message" why not rather find out what it is and what it means from the Bible? The ministry of Brother Branham only ever has authority because it gets if from the Bible.

1 John 1:5  This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all

John never defines a church movement, instead, he defines the content. Not surprisingly the emphasis is on God not on the man.

Many similarities are found between prophets in the Bible who foresaw the end time, and the life and ministry of Brother Branham. Let's look at examples of how the same thing happened to these men and how we can identify this spirit. John the Baptist, four times in the 1st chapter of St John, emphasises that he is not Jesus Christ:

John 1:7  The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.

John 1:8  He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

John 1:9  That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

John 1:15  John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me.

John 1:19  And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou?

John 1:20  And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ.

John 1:27  He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe's latchet I am not worthy to unloose.

This over emphasis is not a mistake. If John was not imprisoned and eventually killed, too many of his converts would not go on to follow Jesus. The following verses clearly show John still had his loyal followers while Jesus's ministry was already moving on. Why were these not following Jesus?

Matthew 9:14 Then came to him the disciples of John, saying, Why do we and the Pharisees fast oft, but thy disciples fast not?

Matthew 9:15 And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bridechamber mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? but the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken from them, and then shall they fast.

Jesus excludes them from the bride of Christ.

Luke 7:18 And the disciples of John shewed him of all these things.

Luke 7:19 And John calling unto him two of his disciples sent them to Jesus, saying, Art thou he that should come? or look we for another?

Luke 7:20 When the men were come unto him, they said, John Baptist hath sent us unto thee, saying, Art thou he that should come? or look we for another?

Luke 7:24 And when the messengers of John were departed, he began to speak unto the people concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness for to see? A reed shaken with the wind?

Jesus only starts speaking to His followers after John's departed, so they miss what Jesus has to say.

Luke 11:1 And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples

Clearly, John's disciples are not with Jesus.

Our focus should always be on following Jesus Christ 1st and foremost. Two of John's disciples realised this:

John 1:35 Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples;

John 1:36 And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!

John 1:37 And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.

Herein we discover a simple yet great truth. We should follow Jesus. Don't follow a man, your pastor or the majority in your church. Compare everything with the truth in the Bible, God's Word. The Bible should be your absolute.

John knew he was going to die and that it had to be this way in order for Jesus to be elevated above him. Therefore he makes the following statement:

John 3:30 He must increase, but I must decrease.

If we all had this attitude we would have a much closer walk with Jesus Christ. We should surrender our will to His will even if it is to our disadvantage. God and His Word must increase over our ideas and over the words of any man or prophet. Jesus Christ is the important one, He is the one from which the light shines.

Psalms 119:105 NUN. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

2 Corinthians 4:6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

We need to see where the light of God is moving to. If the light moves on we need to move with it. Brother Branham always emphasised that the light is in the Word, the Bible, and God is in His Word.


81   But here is one thing. If a man is called of God, he'll stay with that Bible, I don't care what he has to do. You must remember that It's the Truth. And the Truth either binds or sets free. And this is exactly what Jesus Christ said.

« 88 † Some just like the churches today, most the churches has their own absolute. Each one has his own, something like the days of the judges, every man done the way he thought was right. But that ain't right. See, that's when God's Word and prophets wasn't in existence. The Word is the absolute. They had their own absolute. Each one says they are the Truth and the way, "We are the Truth and the way."
89 But Jesus said He was the Truth and the Way, "the Truth, Way, and Light." Is that right? [Congregation says, "Amen."--Ed.] Well, then, He is the Word, so there is the absolute. And the denominational absolutes, nothing to it; it's wrong, let it go.

Many would argue, of course, that no competition exists between Jesus Christ and Brother Branham. However, from history we learn that the competition between John's ministry and Jesus was so strong, that He makes the following statement:

John 5:35 He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light.

John 5:36 But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me.

Not a competition created by John himself, or by Brother Branham, but it rises from amongst the followers. Why would Jesus even compare Himself with John if there were no such competition? Brother Branham wanted to leave the ministry for this very reason.

« 23 † If there's anything that has been in my heart to do, was to hear those Words of our Lord Jesus at the end of this journey, to say, "It was well done, My good and faithful servant." And many times I have said I'd like to have been standing there when He said, "Come unto Me"; but I did desire to hear It say, "Well done." That I did not hear the Voice, in the original, say, "Come unto Me," back in the times of the writing of the Bible; but I do desire to hear It say, "Well done."
And if anything I always wanted to be, and desires of my heart to be, was a true servant to Jesus Christ, my Lord and Saviour. I want my testimony to be clean, clear-cut, that I stood, in all my mistakes I yet loved Him with all my heart. And I do that this morning with all my heart.
And, because of that, it forces me to say I am leaving the ministry, is because that there is something arose up amongst the people that's caused me to do it, that is, that I have been taken from my bracket of a "minister" or "brother" and being called Jesus Christ, and so call... and that would brand me as an antichrist. And I'll meet God as a quitter before I would meet Him as an antichrist to take away from Him.

« 26 † I heard of it a--a few years ago and I thought it was a joke. And I met a couple brethren (which I don't see neither one of them in the meeting this morning), two or three of them one time in a fishing trip, and they approached me by the subject of saying, "Brother Branham, aren't you the anointed Messiah, the Christ?"
And I put my arms around the neck of both brethren, or, all of them, and I said, "Brethren, as much as I have tried to be a true servant of Christ, I would not that you would say such a thing as that. And if it would ever be said of me, then I will leave the field with a clear conscience, and you who do that will be responsible for every soul that I would have saved during that time; see, for taking me from the field." And I thought that ended it.

The next example is found in Daniel. Daniel reveals the secret dream of king Nebuchadnezzar, a similar gift that Brother Branham had. After the king sees this wonderful gift he starts to worship Daniel.

Daniel 2:46 Then the king Nebuchadnezzar fell upon his face, and worshipped Daniel, and commanded that they should offer an oblation and sweet odours unto him.

Daniel 2:47 The king answered unto Daniel, and said, Of a truth it is, that your God is a God of gods, and a Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, seeing thou couldest reveal this secret.

Daniel 2:48 Then the king made Daniel a great man, and gave him many great gifts, and made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief of the governors over all the wise men of Babylon.

Nebuchadnezzar doesn't deny the existence of God, but he sees Daniel as the full manifestation of God. A subtle twist to the truth. Many followers of William Branham do the same thing. Further evidence of this is found in the next chapter.

After just confessing "God is a God of gods", Nebuchadnezzar proceeds to set up a golden image. Quite strange after the experience he just had.

Daniel 3:1 Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold, whose height was threescore cubits, and the breadth thereof six cubits: he set it up in the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon.

Daniel 3:2 Then Nebuchadnezzar the king sent to gather together the princes, the governors, and the captains, the judges, the treasurers, the counsellors, the sheriffs, and all the rulers of the provinces, to come to the dedication of the image which Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up.

Everyone had to be there under the instruction of the king. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego get in trouble for not worshipping the image. But where is Daniel? Surely Daniel would not have bowed to the image. Yet Daniel never gets in trouble. Neither is he ever present in this whole episode. The reality is that the image was an image of Daniel. The king could not have the image and Daniel there at the same time.

Despite all the wonderful miracles and experiences that Nebuchadnezzar has had; he still displays, in his own life, the typical character of a person who is hero-worshipping a man. The characteristics are pride and self-righteousness. We see this same spirit in people today.

Only after the Lord humiliated the king, does he come to his senses. Then he finally worships God and not a man.

Daniel 4:34 And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation:

Daniel 4:37 Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgment: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase.

The Bible teaches humility, not pride. This spirit of pride comes from insecurity and fear. If there is some fault or human error in the hero-man, then what else could be wrong? If they admit he is imperfect they have to admit they have been wrong, and their whole belief system crumbles. Very few people are willing to do this. Unfortunately, if you can't admit you are wrong you will head into the tribulation. The message to the last church age is this:

Revelation 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent

We need to swallow our pride and repent with great zeal. To repent with zeal means to readily admit your wrongs and diligently search out your errors so you can give them up and turn to God. We need to let go of our traditions and unscriptural ideas that have been built up through years of catch phrases and quotes that are placed out of context.

Another example comes from Paul and Barnabas. They were preaching and mighty miracles were done by Jesus Christ thought their ministry just as with William Branham.

Acts 14:8 And there sat a certain man at Lystra, impotent in his feet, being a cripple from his mother's womb, who never had walked:

Acts 14:9 The same heard Paul speak: who stedfastly beholding him, and perceiving that he had faith to be healed,

Acts 14:10 Said with a loud voice, Stand upright on thy feet. And he leaped and walked.

Acts 14:11 And when the people saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices, saying in the speech of Lycaonia, The gods are come down to us in the likeness of men.

Acts 14:12 And they called Barnabas, Jupiter; and Paul, Mercurius, because he was the chief speaker.

The people were so impressed they wanted to worship and sacrifice unto them.

Acts 14:13 Then the priest of Jupiter, which was before their city, brought oxen and garlands unto the gates, and would have done sacrifice with the people.

Like Brother Branham they were abhorred with  this and did everything they could to stop it:

Acts 14:14 Which when the apostles, Barnabas and Paul, heard of, they rent their clothes, and ran in among the people, crying out,

Acts 14:15 And saying, Sirs, why do ye these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein

Once they declare that they are not gods, one would think the people would stop. But not so. Here in is displayed how powerful this spirit of wanting to worship a man is.

Acts 14:18 And with these sayings scarce restrained they the people, that they had not done sacrifice unto them

Brother Branham tried the same thing. Unfortunately, he was unable to succeed and this antichrist spirit is very strong in the church today.

We find yet another example in the ministry of Elisha. The king of Syria wanted to overthrow Israel but was outdone every time when the Lord tells Elisha where his camp is set up for the ambush.

2 Kings 6:11 Therefore the heart of the king of Syria was sore troubled for this thing; and he called his servants, and said unto them, Will ye not shew me which of us is for the king of Israel?

2 Kings 6:12 And one of his servants said, None, my lord, O king: but Elisha, the prophet that is in Israel, telleth the king of Israel the words that thou speakest in thy bedchamber.

2 Kings 6:13 And he said, Go and spy where he is, that I may send and fetch him. And it was told him, saying, Behold, he is in Dothan.

Again here Elisha displays the same gift Brother Branham had. The king does not instruct his soldiers to kill Elisha but rather to fetch him. Why?. So that the king can make use of the power of Elisha for his own gain. Instead of calling for help on the Lord God, the king of Syria wants to rely on the gift of a man. Fatal mistake. His soldiers ends up being blinded by the very man they seek.

2 Kings 6:18 And when they came down to him, Elisha prayed unto the LORD, and said, Smite this people, I pray thee, with blindness. And he smote them with blindness according to the word of Elisha.

2 Kings 6:19 And Elisha said unto them, This is not the way, neither is this the city: follow me, and I will bring you to the man whom ye seek. But he led them to Samaria.

They weren't struck with total physical blindness, only with the blindness of recognising who Elisha was and the way.

John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

The church today face the same problem as the Bible foretold of the age

Revelation 3:17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

We need to know that Brother Branham was a mere mortal man with like passions as we have, and that Jesus Christ is the only way.

The last example is found in the book of Revelation.

Revelation 19:10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

Revelation 22:8 And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things.

Revelation 22:9 Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.

Twice John is so impressed with what the angel shows him that he proceeds to worship the angel. Likewise, the Lord revealed wonderful mysteries though the ministry of Brother Branham. But the rebuke remains the same. "See thou do it not" and "worship God".

Do not make the mistake of thinking that the antichrist spirit will be some new evil movement from the government or from outside the church. The antichrist spirit arises from within the church:

Acts 20:29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.

Acts 20:30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.

Acts 20:31 Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.

John warns the church of the antichrist spirit already in their midst four times:

1 John 2:18 Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.

1 John 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.

1 John 4:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

2 John 1:7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

Satan is a deceiver, he does not take the church over by force, but by introducing very subtle error. Christ means Anointed One. Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. He is now the Anointed One. If we make Brother Branham or any man like the Pope the Anointed One, then we deny that Jesus Christ is the Anointed One. The Bible is our only weapon, our spiritual sword, to fight the antichrist spirit. The Bible is a Book of prophecy, there is none that is Its equal. By these examples, we identify what the antichrist spirit has been in the past, what it is doing now and how it will manifest itself out in the future. Stand against it, and the Lord will not leave your side.

When we make statements like "The Message" is the same as the Bible, we elevate Brother Branham to deity. We make him the Anointed One. Only a perfect man can speak perfect words. Brother Branham was certainly not perfect.


«  21       †        And that brings me or leads me to say something that I would rather run than say. It leads me to say something that I... It grinds my heart to the bottom to say it, but what I say I am forced to say, realizing that this is being taped and the world will hear it, but I have left the ministry for a--a cause that I am sorry that I have to leave for. And perhaps many of you have heard it, I closing my office, and so forth, and leaving the field.

I don't know where our Lord will lead me to, and that I have no control of, or whatever He will have for me to do. But I am thinking at the end of the road where I must come. And down along life's journeys I have made so many mistakes that I am very sorry from my heart of, because of, I guess, being human and in weakness and so forth, causes a person to do things or say things that... and even act that they would not want to act otherwise. But being the weakness of a human being, why, we--we have those times. But there...

To attack the character of Brother Branham and his ministry is wrong, and so it is when doing it to any person or ministry that is trying to spread the truth of the Gospel. But to point out human error in order to elevate the perfection of the Deity of Jesus Christ is to fight the antichrist spirit with full force. We must realise the incredible power and position of Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 1:20 Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places,

Ephesians 1:21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:

Paul makes the following statement

1 Corinthians 11:1 Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.

Paul does not mean he follows Christ and then we should follow after him as in the sense of a hierarchy, for that would contradict scripture:

John 8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

Rather Paul means we should imitate his life as he imitates the life of Christ. Imitation is very different to following in subjection. Our subjection is to Jesus Christ alone.

Here is a classic mistake that Brother Branham makes, showing he is just as human as we are:

« 166 † Notice here, some of you Bible students, and especially Doctor Dale looking at me. Notice in Peter, in the 2nd chapter of Peter here, 3rd chapter, rather, he uses the word "world," as a Greek word kosmos, which means, "the world order." "The earth shall pass away, melt the elements with fervent heat." See? Doesn't mean that the earth, the planet, is going to pass away. But the world, kosmos, the politics, the sinners, the systems, sin, disease, germs, everything that's wrong, will pass away. Everything that once...
167 God once shook the heavens, but this time He said He'll shake the earth, heavens and earth... "He shook the earth," rather, "and then this time He'll shake the heavens." See? "For we receive a Kingdom that cannot be moved." It's a Eternal Kingdom. Watch how he goes to it.

Brother Branham is referring to the following verse:

2 Peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away (G3928) with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

2 Peter 3:11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved (G3089), what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,


« 173 † Now, many of you that want to put down this word, the Greek word, "pass away." It comes from the word... I had to find it. I thought, "How is this world going to pass away, and yet we're going to live on it?" But if you'll notice, some of you people that wants to put it down, I'll spell it for you. I couldn't pronounce it, p-a-r-e-r-e-c-h-o-m-i-a. I don't know how to pronounce it.
174 Now, that way, as I said, when I get... The inspiration strikes me for something, then I go back to find out the word. Now, here, I can't spell the word, or I can't--I can't pronounce it. But, in that, the Lord has still give me a way. I go and find out what that word means, then I got it. See? Then I got it, again. See?
175 Heavens and earth will pass away, now, this word means, "passing from one form to another." It does not mean "annihilation," as the English word would mean, pass away, it's annihilated. But the Hebrew word, or the Greek here, does not mean pass away; it means, "from passing from one thing to another." Look, but, "to pass from one condition," it says, "to another."

Here is the definition of the word according to Strong's dictionary.





From G3844 and G2064; to come near or aside, that is, to approach (arrive), go by (or away), (figuratively) perish or neglect, (causatively) avert: - come (forth), go, pass (away, by, over), past, transgress.

Obviously, Brother Branham got the meaning, or the word, wrong.

« 176 † Now notice, Paul used it, if you want to read it now. Put it down, you can read it later. In Titus 3:5, Paul is using this same word, means regeneration of man, that man has passed from a sinner to a saint, not completely annihilated. When a man is changed, he isn't annihilated, but he's a changed person. He has been changed from what he was to what he is, not annihilated.

Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration (G3824),and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

The word for regeneration here in Titus is "paliggenesia" . Not the same word as in 2Peter 3:10





From G3825 and G1078; (spiritual) rebirth (the state or the act), that is, (figuratively) spiritual renovation; specifically Messianic restoration: - regeneration.

« 177 † Jesus used the same word in Matthew 19:28; now, not 28:19. Now, 19:28, He said to them, "You'll set with Me in My Father's Kingdom, regenerated," you see, "changed," when you're changed. He used the same word.

Matthew 19:28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration (G3824) when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

This is the same word as in Titus 3:5 but not the same as in 2Peter3:10. Brother Branham simply by accident, as with human nature, referred to the wrong Greek word.

178 And He used the same word when He said, to the colt, said, "Loose the colt and let him go."

Mark 11:2 And saith unto them, Go your way into the village over against you: and as soon as ye be entered into it, ye shall find a colt tied, whereon never man sat; loose (G3089) him, and bring him

Now, Brother Branham has 3 words mixed up. The Greek work for loose is "luō". Its the same word used in 2 Peter 3:11 for dissolved.





A primary verb; to “loosen” (literally or figuratively): - break (up), destroy, dissolve, (un-) loose, melt, put off. Compare G4486.

« 184 † We read in John, read John in Revelation 6:14, see, "it departed as a scroll." The Bible said the... that it... John said, "I saw the heaven and earth depart as a scroll." John, Revelation 6:14.
185 Jesus said, "Heavens and earth shall pass away," or, other words, "heavens and earth shall be changed." See, used that same word right there again.
186 No, not annihilated. For, later, in Revelations 21:2 to 24, he seen the New Jerusalem coming down from God out of Heaven, and sitting upon this earth. It doesn't mean it'll be annihilated. The systems will be changed. 

Revelation 6:14 And the heaven departed (G673) as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.

The Greek word for departed is "apochōrizō". 4th mistake. It doesn't match any of the previous words.





From G575 and G5563; to rend apart; reflexively to separate: - depart (asunder).

“The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.” — 1 Corinthians 16:23