Revelation2,9: 'I know thy works, and thy tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan."
An Exposition Of The Seven Church Ages, Voice of God Recordings, 2012, Jeffersonville, Indiana
The Smyrnaen Church Age p.119:
" 'Oh,' cries the Spirit. "I see your poverty. I see your need. You haven't very much, if anything to boast of. What you did have was taken from you. You gladly gave up your posessions in exchange for eternal ones. You are laughed at. You are scorned. You don't have material resources to fall back on. But you are rich in spite of it all. Your security lies in Him who is your shield and exceeding great reward. Your kingdom is yet to come. But it will come. And it will be an everlasting one. Yes, I am mindful of your trials and woes. I know how hard it is to get along. But I will remember all this when I return to claim you as My own, and then I will reward you.
Now this is nothing against rich people, because God can save a rich man. Some of God's children are rich. But money can be such a snare, not only to those who have it but to those who don't have it. Way back in the first age, James cried out to those who were putting stock in wealthy people, 'Have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ with respect to persons.' The poor there were trying to butter up the rich in order to get help, rather than trusting in God. 'Don't do it,' says James. 'Don't do it. Money isn't everything. Money isn't the answer.' And today it is not the answer either. We have more wealth than we ever had and yet less is being accomplished Spiritually. It is not with money that God works. He moves by His Spirit. And that moving of the Spirit comes only to a life consecrated to the Word."
*used by permission
William Branham (1909-1965) was to 20th century American preaching what Frank Capra (1897-1991) was to 20th century American film-making.
Today is our twelth in a series of excerpts from William M. Branham's two principal written works. We're not going to take time explaining his life or the miracles that attended it, or defend his preaching style or grammar, his doctrines or vice versa.
That's all being said and done, and likely will be until Jesus comes back.
Rather than get distracted, our aim is to see Branham's gift of in depth discernment, study, and then fully shouting from the rooftops about biblical passages that Christians historically, and to this day, avoid, gloss over, explain away, or outright change, according to denominational and political fault lines.
Having said that, there might not be two bible expositors or students across the whole Christian spectrum who agree with half of what Br. Branham preached.
Yet and still, in an age where preaching has become so tepid, so nuanced, so easy-pleasy, so cookie-cutter and prosperity bound, there seems to be a famine of the prophetic word, his voice is somehow still welcome. (As for this famine: https://vimeo.com/126142650 ) Why? I'm not sure, but it has something to with the fact that his preaching still prods and wrankles all, just like Jesus', and even galvanizes some to get serious about salvation from our savior who said "not everybody who says 'Lord Lord' will get into the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew7,21)
Long before anybody heard about "the prosperity gospel", Branham was preaching against it. Instead, he preached for all God's people, for humanity, not for pastorianity or churchianity, not for secular power and wealth on behalf of the potentates of the world, but for humanity, poor as well as rich. In this homespun humanity and the breath of his gospel vision, he shares much with the renown American film-maker Frank Capra.
One note of caution, Branham's ability to communicate, especially vocally, is so effective, so boiled down and rich, the apparent temptation of some is to preach his words rather than the same written word and gospel that he so loved.
In sum, anyone who hasn't sampled Branham's vast gospel output has missed something of the potential breath, vision, and import of our individual faith witness according to the word of God.
Hope you enjoy this series.
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Tobin Hitt is the founder of the Zion Pentecost Mission. He is open to gospel partnership with all, and identifies with Paul's description of our mission as ambassadors for our king, Jesus, urging all to reconcile with God (2Cor.20-21). He resides in Cheshire, Connecticut.read more...