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Why Is It That So Many Christians Find It So Hard To Live The Christian Life?
1 Let us remain standing just a moment till we meet God in prayer. Shall we bow our heads. Our gracious heavenly Father, we thank Thee today from the depths of our hearts for the privilege that we have of calling Thee our Father. We read in the Bible where the Spirit would cry, "Abba, Father, My God, My God."
And we're so happy today that we have been included in this great number of the redeemed. And we are here this afternoon for no other purpose but to worship Thee, to read Thy Word, and to find out how we could be better servants of Yours, and to live a closer Christian walk for You, and with You. And we pray that You will meet with us around the Word and will give to us that deep desire that we so want in our hearts.
And we'll praise Thee for we ask it in the Name of Thy Son, the Lord Jesus. Amen. Be seated. [Romans 8:15]
2 I'm so happy to be here this afternoon in the service of the Lord. And I trust that our little gathering together will be to His praise.
And now, many of the brethren, the brethren that's with me, was assembled out in the other places, today where they were having worship. And the place where I was at this morning, we had a wonderful time, over to the Assemblies of God church. And so we had a wonderful service, and I know you did also.
And we're thankful that you're out this afternoon, and we feel that somehow we just can't get enough of God. And there's something about the Gospel, and the Word of God, that we just simply can't seem to get enough of It. I believe you could... You might eat too much sometimes, and you might drink enough good cold water to make you sick, but I don't believe that a man could ever pray too much, or get too much of the love of God in his heart. That's just one thing that just doesn't seem to ever get enough, fill up.
And I'm taught that when we eat... If we are used to eating small portions, our stomach shrinks to that portion. And if we eat much, our stomach stretches to that. And I think we need some spiritual stretching, and get much of the Word. Can't be satisfied with just reading a little verse once in a while, or something of that manner, but stretching our spiritual gastronomics...
3 If I'm not mistaken, isn't this Brother and Sister Peterson setting right here from Minneapolis? I believe I seen Captain Stadsklev here, your son-in-law, last night, a chaplain in the--in the Army. I don't see him today. Yes, here he is over here.
Well, you're going to be here through the meeting, I suppose. And I hope to get to see you before coming out. I want to go to the post with you, if the Lord willing, while I'm in California.
Well, we're going to read just a first part of one verse and part of another verse out of the 36th chapter of Ezekiel. And that is the 26th, and the--I mean the 36th and the 37th verse, the 26th and 27th verse.
A new heart also will I put within you, and a new spirit will I put within you:...
Then the 27th verse.
And I will put my spirit within you,... [Ezekiel 36:26-27]
Now, as we have before us this text, we trust that God will give us a context from this. And we are trusting solemnly in the Holy Spirit to bring out the context of this text.
In the Bible there are many great gifts. And God sets those gifts into the Church in order for the perfecting of the Church. And now, I wish to take my subject this afternoon on this, and to you who are writing it down and so forth, and for the tape, "Why Is It That So Many Christians Find It So Hard to Live the Christian Life?"
4 I think that would be, seemingly to me, a very vital subject this afternoon. Why is it that some seems to be on the housetop all the time, and others seems to have their ups-and-downs all the time, and others seems to be practically in the valley all the time?
Getting the letters and the reports from the meetings, sometimes leads me to prayer to find what would the Lord have me to speak to the Church. For in the letters and sometimes it's nighttime when the anointing of the discernment is on, you seemingly you could find that confusion.
And them spirits that seems to be some of them rejoicing, and some sad, and some disappointed, and sometimes the Holy Spirit brings us to such subjects as we have this afternoon.
5 Now, we're speaking of Ezekiel, some eight or nine hundred years before the coming of the Messiah. In the Bible the prophets, the Word came to the prophets in the days of old. In Hebrews, it said, "God, in sundry times and divers manners spake to the fathers by the prophets, but in this last day has spoke to us through His Son, Christ Jesus."
Now, the prophets were seers, Divine seers. And at the change of the dispensations from law unto grace, did not change God sending still, prophets. For in the New Testament we find prophecy went on just the same. And also prophets went on just the same.
Prophecy is a gift. It's a gift that might be on one and then another in any local church. And everyone may prophesy one by one. [Hebrews 1:1-2]
6 But a prophet is a office of the Church, not a gift in the Church, but an office of the Church: a prophet. They are not... They are ordained, predestined by God's foreknowledge to be what they are. They're born prophets. Prophets are not made; they are born prophets. And a prophet or a seer, in one word, is considered in the Old Testament as eagles. And how I love to think of it in that way, as an eagle.
I put much of my life in conservation, as you know, and studying wildlife, studying birds, wild birds, wild animals, learning their nature. And I find that an eagle is the most interesting bird, nearly, that I know, of outside of the dove.
7 The eagle is a bird of prey. But he's also a bird of the heavens. And in a certain book, reading one time where a--a terrible sight to see a eagle in a cage. And this eagle, this great mammoth bird, would get back and fly against the cage as hard as he could, only to hit his head and come back, fall on the floor, look around. He'd flog his great wings against the cage again. He'd just been caged.
And as he'd flog his wings, he had all the hide and feathers beat off his wings, off of parts of his body, where he had so stretched to get out of that cage. And when he would hit the cage, he'd fall back. Weary eyes would look up towards the heavens. He knew he was born a heaven soaring bird. That's his nature.
8 That was a sad sight, one of the saddest I ever seen. But I see a sight in Phoenix, and the world over, that's a much sadder sight than that: I see men and women who were born to be sons and daughters of God, and who are caged by the devil. And to see them walking the streets in lust and passion, caged in by the devil, when really they should be free sons and daughters of God...
Now, an eagle could fly higher than any other bird there is. There's no bird can climb where the eagle flies. And neither was there any man who, whether he was teacher, evangelist, pastor could climb to the spot where them prophets went. For they went way up, and higher you go, further you can see away.
9 And this bird was made... No other bird could stand it up there. The eagle's eye is the sharpest eye of any bird. Why, he can outdo the hawk in any way. 'Cause the hawk has a sharp eye, but just for a certain distance. But the eagle is more powerful, because he goes higher than the hawk. He goes up to where the hawk would die if he'd try to come to him. His body is not made like that.
Oh, how I could stop right here, by the help of God, and show you how some people try to climb to places where others stand. You just wasn't made that way. You just can't stand it.
10 And these eagles would go up. Could King Hezekiah ever climb where Elijah was? Though he was the greatest man in the kingdom, the king, but when he turned his face to the wall and wept bitterly, God spoke to Isaiah to go tell him. Isaiah could climb where Hezekiah could not, though Hezekiah could speak a word here on earth, as a hawk, and everything bowed at his feet... Isaiah couldn't do that, but Isaiah could climb into a place where Hezekiah couldn't climb. All these things are for purposes.
So God's eagle, Ezekiel, climbed up into a place to where he could see some fifteen, eighteen, yes two thousand five hundred years ahead, seeing things.
If you could go high enough above the earth, you could see night and day at the same time, dark on one side and light on the other. So you could see the world over, if you could get high enough and your eyes could focus to that. So Ezekiel climbed up so high, that he saw our day, God's eagle. And he told us what would take place in this day.
11 Now, I want to ask you something. The Church seems to be out of cater somewhere.
Now, we've got at least a good hour here, so let's just set down, and take our helmets off, and listen just for a few minutes.
Now, notice, if God intended His Church to be run upon intellectuals, then it doesn't take the Holy Spirit to do anything in the Church. We do not need the Holy Spirit if the Church is to be run upon intellectuals. Then we should find the smartest man we could find to be our pastor. And the biggest buildings that we could build, and the more members we could get into our church, and root out the illiterate, and bring in the intellectual, better the church would be, if that is the program. If that's the program, the smarter the preacher, the smarter the congregation, the more intellectual they are, the better the church will be.
But I can't find one place in all the Holy Scriptures where God's Church is to be run upon the wisdom of men. And as long as we try to run it upon the intellectual of man, we are absolutely fighting the air.
12 God's Church is to be run up by the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Then if we have the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit is going to run the Church, then it doesn't take too much intellectual. It doesn't take education. It takes the Holy Spirit; that's God's program.
Now, we know that. We don't have to find the smartest people in the city to make our church better. We don't have to find the best dressed people in the city to make our church better. We don't need the biggest crowds in the city to make our church better. We need the guidance of the Holy Spirit to make our church better.
13 Intellectuals have very little to do with it. I'm not trying to support illiteracy. But education has taken the place in the church of the Holy Spirit. Education's all right, but that is not God's program.
If education was to take the place, Christ would established schools when He was on earth. Christ never did establish a school. But Christ established a Church, and not a Church of intellectuals, but out of a bunch of illiterate fishermen, who were willing to listen to the Holy Spirit and be led accordingly.
Now, the Church doesn't need a group of intellectuals. The Church needs a birth. The Church needs to be borned again. If the Holy Spirit is going to lead the Church, then the Holy Spirit will lead the Church, not according to some ritual, but according to the Bible. So this is the rules He laid down in the beginning.
The Church needs a baptism. The Church doesn't need a polishing up, a better scholar in the pulpit, a better dressed man, a better dressed congregation. It needs a new heart, is what the Church needs. It needs the Holy Spirit. It needs that great unction that changes men and women's lives. How God promised that He would take the old stony heart out and put a new heart in you. Then when this happens, a change has been made.
14 Now, in preaching these things, even to the Pentecostal people... And we have very little to brag about. For in where we have tried to have a Pentecostal free move of God. We have become to a place a bunch of colonized cults almost, just a place of confusion and discord.
What ought to happen here this afternoon? There should be every Pentecostal church in the city jammed into some big stadium out here somewhere. And if it wasn't for little petty indifferences among the ministers and the people, it would be that way.
"A new heart will I give you," not "I'll polish the old one up," but, "I'll give you a new one." Now, you... It's hard. We think it's hard to preach truth amongst Baptists and Presbyterians, the intellectuals; but it's twice as hard to preach the truth before Pentecostals. That's right. [Ezekiel 36:26]
15 Now, the Bible has told us that you can't put new wine in old bottles. That once stumbled me. I couldn't understand. A bottle as I know it here, and we in America, is a glass affair. And what difference would it make if we put wine in the new bottle or the old bottle?
But when I was in the Orient, I learned that the bottle in the Bible day was not a glass bottle. It was a bottle that was made out of animal skin. They taken the skin from the animal and tanned it. Now, as long as the--the oil from the animal skin is in the skin, it's flexible. But when the skin gets old, and set, and dry, then it isn't flexible any more. Bless the Lord. This skin becomes dry and sets, then it won't give no more. And to put new unfermented wine, that's got life in it yet, into a skin like that, wouldn't be wisdom. When the wine begins to ferment and to stretch, the skin bursts, and you lose both bottle and wine.
Jesus said in another place, "Cast not pearls before swine." You lose your pearls.
And you take a church that is so set in its way, let it be Baptist, Pentecostal, or whatever it is, that it's so set, that when the New Wine comes in, and the Wine comes by the Word... And that New Word begins to say, "The days of miracles are here again."
That old dried up skin will, when that New Wine begins to take a hold, it can't move, because it's set in what it believes; it won't move, and the skin busts open and pop open..." [Brother Branham illustrates the sound of a skin popping open--Ed.]...?... I don't believe in miracles." There you are. [Mark 2:22], [Matthew 7:6]
16 When the Holy Spirit begins to say that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever, and that falls in an old, dry church hide, you know what happens? They just blow up. That's all.
If you say the baptism of the Holy Spirit was promised on the day of Pentecost to you, and to your children, and to them that is far off, even as many as the Lord, our God shall call, the old dry skin just bursts open, and you lose your sermon. That's right. It doesn't do any good. And I'm ashamed that Pentecostals skins are drying like that. That's right. Come back to the Word.
Notice. Now, a new skin... He said, "New wine is put into new bottles," and the new skin has oil in it: flexible. And then when the Holy Spirit comes down and says, "The baptism of the Holy Spirit is the same today as it ever was, Divine Healing is the same as it ever was," that new wine begins to spread out and the skin gives with it. Every time the Word of God is preached in Its power, the new skin will holler, "Amen." It'll give away. So you see the wisdom in a new bottle for new wine.
On the day of Pentecost there was one hundred and twenty new skins laying on the floor. Now, you find out the old skins was cast outside. But when God came from the heavens and filled these new skins, they got new Life and begin to bounce all over the floor, even bounce out the door, and through the windows into the streets, new skins with new bottles, new Wine, Holy Ghost Wine. Pour It out, full of Life, just stretching and giving and... "Oh, Brother John, I don't care what denomination you belong to I love you anyhow." There you are. [Acts 2:39], [Mark 2:22]
17 "I don't care whether you're Oneness, Twoness, Threeness, Fiveness; we are brothers." That's the new skin. Whether we're Assemblies, Church of God, Foursquare, whatever we are, the new skins stretch plumb out and take in every brother there is around. But the old cowhide won't do that. That's right. It won't do it. Somehow it just won't do it; it's all dried and set. And it'll burst.
Sometime ago up in northern British Columbia, I was hunting; after a great meeting. And I was so tired. And I went back about a... we was about eleven hundred miles from a hardtop road, about a hundred and seventy-five miles back with twenty-one horses.
And I got to chasing an old bear that day. It was raining. And I didn't want to shoot the old fellow; I just wanted to look at him, but he was determined I wasn't going to do that.
And I had a little horse of about three years old that had tried ever since I'd been riding him to throw me. And up through the hills we went chasing this old bear, and somehow or another, trying to cut across this gulch and over that, I got turned around.
18 Well, now, you don't want to do that up there, 'cause there's no roads; there's no places to come out. And somehow I started wandering. I took my little horse and went up the top of the mountain and looked around. I thought I had my general directions although the fog was on.
19 I started back towards where I thought I could find camp, riding along pretty swiftly, 'cause it was getting towards dark. And the winds come up and blowed away the fogs and by, I say nine o'clock at night, we would have what they call "Buttermilk Skies." I do. You have something like clabbers and some white clouds, like buttermilk does.
And the moon would shine and--and then go behind the cloud, and then shine again. My little horse was sweating pretty heavy, so I felt led that I should stop the little fellow and let him rest. And I stopped him, and tied him up pretty close, cinched him up--or uncinched the saddle, rather, and tied him up close, and I set down on the log.
I was setting there wondering; I said, "O God, how great Thou art," looking around. And just then, the winds a-blowing east, and I heard the most mournful noise I ever heard. I thought, "What's making that real funny noise." And I looked just ahead of me, and there was an old burn-over. I guess you all know what a burn-over is, where there's been trees, and the fire's went through and burned all the bark off of them, and they're just standing there, some of them blowed down and hard to get through.
20 And every time the wind would blow, then that wind blowing down through those old light bare trees, and the moon shining on them, it looked very (well, I should say, called it in a street expression), "spooky," kind of a funny feeling, give you. It looked like a graveyard, tombstones sticking up. And every time that wind would blow, that real mournful sound would set up in them trees. Oh, such a sound. And I thought, "Isn't that a spooky looking place?"
And I watched, stood and looked at it a little while, I thought, "You know this reminds me of the text I used to use over in Joel, said, 'What the palmerworm has left, the caterpillar has eaten. What the caterpillar left, has the cankerworm's eaten. What the cankerworm left, the locust has eaten.'" I thought, "Well, that sure is a picture of Joel." And I thought, "Yes, that reminds me of all that mournful noise of these great big high-standing steeples on churches, great big denominations behind them, but not a bit of life, like the old dry cowhide. [Joel 1:4]
21 Then every time God sends down that rushing mighty wind like He did on the day of Pentecost, the only thing they can do is just groan, moan: "The days of miracles is past. Don't you go around such stuff. Oh, it won't do." See? Just moaning and groaning.
Well, I thought, "Why don't them trees...? What makes them moan is because they haven't got any life in them. That's the reason they are moaning.
Well, I thought, "If they had life in them, they could sway with this wind." Well, I said, "That's right. What the Lutheran left, has the Methodist eaten. What the Methodist left, the Presbyterians eaten. What the Presbyterians left, the Baptists eaten. What the Baptists left, the Nazarenes eaten. What the Nazarenes left, the Pentecostals eaten." I said, "It sure come down to a big old bunch of bleak churches with nothing in them." That's exactly right. That's right.
22 Just when a revival hits there, "I'll have nothing to do with it. No. Keep away from that." Oh, brother. That was a pretty dark picture, till I happened to think that Joel said, "But I will restore saith the Lord." Then I thought, "Lord, how are You going to do this?" Then another great wind swept out again, and I noticed down beneath these old trees was standing a bunch of little scrubs, just little bitty trees coming up, little scrub fellows.
But every time the wind blowed and caught into those little old trees, they would just scream, and jump, and hold to one another, and that's as David said, "Clap their hands." How they were just as flexible. If the wind blowed over here to Jones, it was all right. If it blowed them over to--to the Assemblies, it was all right. If it blowed them back to the Foursquare, it was all right. They were just as flexible as they could be. Every one was so shaked together. "I will restore, saith the Lord."
I noticed, the strange thing of it, I said, "Well, there's one thing. Them trees are green, but they're flexible. They got life." [Joel 2:25]
23 So you see, brother, the Holy Ghost wasn't sent for starch, stiff, dead intellectuals; It was sent for free borned again men and women in the Kingdom of God. The Holy Spirit wasn't sent to the intellectual. It's sent to those who are humble hearts and contrite spirits, no matter if they're educated or not educated, whether they're scrubs, or whatever they are. They're flexible to the Holy Spirit.
And may I ask a question to myself. I thought, "Oh, what makes the wind blow to begin with. Is it just because the wind wants to blow?"
And Something seemed to say to me, "No, it isn't because it wants to blow, but every time them little trees shake and give away, it loosens up the roots so they can grow deeper and get a better hold."
24 That is the principle of a revival: a people who are flexible, not to an intellectual talk, but to the coming of the Holy Spirit in the form of a baptism, that gives away to the Word of God and rejoicing and is flexible in the anointing of the Spirit.
What does it do to the Church? It loosens up the roots of the Church, and makes it grow over, and wrap its roots around Jones' church, and Jones wraps the roots around this church. And the first thing you know, together they are one big united forest together. All the devils in hell couldn't shake them then.
But that's the trouble. That's what it is. Now, notice the Scriptural order it says here; "I will give you a new heart." Not a polished up one, not one that's kindly a old... The old lady don't need a facelifting; she needs a birth. That's what she needs. [Ezekiel 36:26]
25 The old church needs to be borned again. Now, He never said, "I'll polish up the old heart." He said, "I'll take the old, stony heart out of you and put a new one in." That new heart... That new heart sets right in the middle of your innermost being. The heart is the occupant place of the soul. They didn't know that in science till not long ago.
The old critical science used to say, "God made a mistake when He said, 'As a man believeth in his heart.' The Bible was wrong." Said, "There's no mental faculties in the heart. You believe with your head."
If God... I'm a literalist. I don't want to spiritualize any of the Word. I want to say just what the Word says. I believe It that way. The Bible said, "It's of no private interpretation." And if God would've meant "head," He'd have said, "head." But He said, "heart."
So we find out that a few years ago (about three years ago now, two years ago it's been), on the headlines of the Chicago paper, there come an article, that they found a little compartment in the human heart (It isn't in the animal heart, or no other heart but the human.), a little place where there's not even a blood cell. And they say it is the--the apartment--compartment there that occupies, the soul. So God was right. [Romans 10:10], [II Peter 1:20]
26 A man thinks with his head, but believes with his heart. That's right. The intellectual will reason. Oh, I'm too bad. I can't do this. This... Oh, if I could go over there, I will be... oh..." See, that's reasoning, but the heart doesn't reason. It just accepts the Word the way It is, and believes It. The Bible said we should cast down reasoning. That's right. We're to believe, not reason. Just believe it.
"A new heart will I give you." Now, here's where many of the people has made a mistake. "And a new spirit will I give you." Now, He never said, "I'll just polish up the old spirit, polish up the old heart," but, "I'll give you a new heart and a new spirit." [II Corinthians 10:5], [Ezekiel 36:26]
27 Now, many people's thought that to be the Holy Spirit. And they made a mistake. The Methodist thought surely they had it when they shouted. Said, "Brother, we got it." Anybody that shouts, but they found out, there was a lot shouted didn't have it. That's right.
Along come the Pentecostal and said, "When we speak with tongues we've got it." But they found out a lot spoke with tongues that didn't have it. That's right. You admit that.
Well, now we got all kinds of everything for coming, and you haven't got It, till you get it. But brother, you haven't got it until there is the Spirit of God comes from heaven and changes your life, that makes the fruits of your life a different person. "By their fruit you shall know them." That's the reason you have so much ups-and-downs. [Matthew 7:16]
28 You get a new spirit; you quit your drinking. You get a new spirit you quit your drink--lying. You get a new spirit; you can do most anything with that spirit, but that isn't what God's talking about. "A new spirit," He said, "I'll give you..." Now watch, "I'll give you a new heart and a new spirit." Why, He'd have to give you a new spirit to live for Him.
Why, you couldn't even live with yourself with the spirit you did have. You couldn't live with your neighbor. You couldn't associate with the next man on the next corner. You couldn't associate with these Christians. Why, you'd have had an awful spirit. So He has to give you a new spirit. "I'll give you a new heart, a new spirit." Now, watch. "And I will put My Spirit in you." There's the difference. "I'll put My Spirit in you."
And there's where you find it so hard that you go down to church and you get a different concept. "You know what? I believe I ought to go to church." [Ezekiel 36:26-27]
29 Then you go back home and say, "Hallelujah, I got it." No you haven't. Then you go down to church and you say, "Oh, I believe that something's happened. I don't look at things the way I used to. Hallelujah!"
And in a few days you find yourself right down into the same old rut you was: doubting, reasoning, everything else. "Well now, if Pastor So-and-so said that wasn't right, I don't believe it's right. I'll just take his word for it. And I tell you I'm going to do this, and do that." And you find yourself up-and-down, and in-and-out. See, you just didn't go far enough.
30 Oh, you say, Brother Branham, I--I got all the evidences." I know, but we're not talking about evidences; we're talking about the product. That's right. Yes, sir. I've seen heathens shout. I've seen them speak with tongues. I've seen them lay down a pencil and write in unknown tongues, and a witch raise up and read it, interpret it and tell the truth.
If a man could speak with tongues, if a man could shout, if a man could see visions, if a man could do any of these other things that he can do without Divine love, they are lost. That's right. Christ is in the heart. See?
So don't be deceived by signs and evidences. There's all kinds of signs. The Bible said, in the last days false prophets will rise up and show such signs, it would deceive the very elect if possible. Come back to the Bible signs. [Mark 13:22]
31 Notice, now, "I'll give you a new spirit, and I'll put My Spirit..." Notice, the new heart is put right in the middle of you. And the new spirit is put right in the middle of your new heart. And His Spirit is put right in the middle of the new spirit.
It's just like the mainspring in a famous watch. When that... When that mainspring sets in the middle of the watch, it controls every movement of that watch. And that's what's the matter, friends. Now, I hope you see this. And I'm not saying it to be--try to twist or be indifferent; I'm only saying it because I know that someday I'll stand in the judgment with you. You see, if the Holy Spirit is in the middle of your spirit... And that watch spring makes all the rest of the movements just tick just exactly to the place, keeping perfect time. When the Holy Spirit is in the middle of your spirit, it makes every action of the Holy Spirit in you tick off just exactly according to God's Timepiece, the Bible. Right. [Ezekiel 36:26]
32 You don't lie; you don't steal; you got associates, and your lovely, and you've got peace, joy and long-suffering, goodness, meekness, patience. Why, all the fruits of the Spirit just ticks right with that mainspring. See what I mean?
Now, it's the main spring that does it. It's the Holy Spirit that does it. It isn't your church that does it. It isn't your pastor that does it. It isn't your shouting that does it. It isn't your speaking with tongues that does it. It isn't your healing service that does it. It's the Holy Spirit that does it, God's Holy Spirit in the middle of your new spirit. It makes the whole Church operate, just exactly one big bundle of love.
33 Oh, don't we need it, friends. Examine ourselves today. Examine it by the Word. See? Is our life ticking off just like that? See? Everything, love... What's the fruit of it? How do you know it's keeping right time? It's got love.
Love vaunteth not itself, it's not puffed up. It's sociable, neighborly, loving, believing all things, hoping all things. Love, joy, peace, long-suffering, goodness, gentleness, patience, meek, faith. All these fine qualities is ticking out of that person's life when the Holy Spirit's in there ticking it around.
Now, it wasn't by intellectual conception, that this brings forth. It is by the baptism of the Holy Ghost that brings this. If you are trying to live a Christian life, you're only impersonating. [I Corinthians 13:4], [Galatians 5:22-23]
34 It's not... Paul said, "It's not me that liveth, but Christ that liveth in me. The life that I now live, I live not of myself, but Christ that liveth in me." He becomes dead to all the things of the world, that Christ, the main spring in his life, was ticking off his life just exactly, exactly the way God had laid it down here in the Bible. You get what I mean?
That's the reason we're fussing with one another today. That's the reason there's quarreling and stewing among us. That's the reason the Assemblies can't believe with the Oneness, or have fellowship. That's the reason the Oneness can't believe with the Assemblies. That's the reason the Methodists won't believe with the Baptists. That's the reason the Presbyterian won't believe with neither one. That's the reason these factions, and difference, and fusses, and stews, and all this, that, or the other.
We might shout, speak with tongues, organize, education...?... anything that we want to call it, but until God's Holy Spirit comes in the middle of His Church and begins to fix that power of God... That's what's the matter. See? You are known. [Galatians 2:20]
35 Do you mean to tell me that the Church of the living God would be anything short of that? So you see, we went to looking to evidences instead of the mainspring. We went to looking what a nice case is on it, what a big church we got, how big the steeple is on top of it, how nice our people is dressed, how our pastor can stand and say, "aaaaamen," like a calf dying with the cramps. We have got all these things into our church and left off the mainspring.
"For though I speak with tongues as men and angels; though I have gifts till I can move mountains, though I understand all the words, though I have all knowledge, I am nothing."
Oh, I simply feel like... If I could only had the knowledge, or the something to express to you, my people. Oh, the people of our God, don't leave off the mainspring, no matter how pretty it looks, how much of a watch it looks like. If that mainspring isn't in there, it'll never keep time. Hallelujah. Glory.
We can call ourselves Foursquare, Assembly, Presbyterian, Baptist. We can call ourselves Pentecostal, whatever we want to, but as long as that mainspring, the Holy Ghost, isn't there ticking off love, joy, peace, goodness, longsuffering, we are just putting on a show.
36 No wonder we can't have real healing services. Where can God lead those sincere people upon a foundation? This is God's Foundation. No other foundation could be laid. We might think we're laying the foundation, but we find out the mainspring's gone.
The builders thought they could build the temple, and the little old funny mainspring that didn't seem to fit in anywhere, they kicked it out over into a weed pile, but they come to find out it was the chief cornerstone.
My brother, sister, we've had all kinds of sensations, all kinds of evidences, all kinds of everything else, but until we come back to the mainspring, our church is only just as dry as the rest of them. We've got to come back to where there's something in the member that gives him peace and joy, he's always on the mountain top shouting the praises of God.
Oh, my, I wish I could get you to see it. Then the yoke becomes easy. It doesn't chafe around the collar. It's lined with love. If it's only lined with emotion, it'll soon chaff around the collar.
37 You could come to church and shout, and dance, and whatever you want to. You can go to church and sing "Amen" and repeat the "Doxology," or what so-called the "Apostle's Creed"... The Apostle's Creed never was what they got wrote up, "I believe in the holy Roman Catholic church and communion of the saints." The Bible is against that. If the apostles had any creed, it's, "Repent, and be baptized, every one of you in the Name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." If they had any creed it would be something like that, not a communion of saints; that's condemned.
But you might be able to say all the catechism of your church, and be just as staunch Lutheran as you could be, or Catholic, or whatever you might be, or Methodist, those who have catechisms. To know the catechism is not life. To know the church is not life. To know the Bible is not life. But to know Him is Life, the Mainspring, spring...?... [Acts 2:38]
38 Now, you can shout a little bit at church, and you go out on the street, and somebody say, "You know you're a holy roller?" Oh, it chafes, real bad.
Somebody said, "Well, look. Why, I seen you down the other night shouting till your hair fell down."
"Well, John, I suppose if that's the way you're going to do it, we might as well get away from that group." It's chafing. See? But when the Mainspring is in there, it lines it with love. And the yoke is easy, and you can bear anything.
They call you a holy-roller, call you a fanatic, anything they want to, the yoke is so easy till you can lay it up on your shoulders. When you're yoked up with the Mainspring, and it's not you any more; it's Him that's a ticking it off. It's so easy, just like Samson with the brazen gates of Gaza. He just packed them away.
And when somebody calls you a holy-roller, or makes fun of you, you just pack the old burden right up to a certain mountain called Calvary and pray for them. Amen. That's when love comes. Love, that's what the world is a dying for is love. Now, God wanted to show... The apostles, rather, wanted to show us what God's power was. Watch what His power was?
39 He takes us over to the stillborn body of the Lord Jesus; dead, nails through the hands, the pale cheeks, who's laying in the grave. A Roman seal over the top of the great big stone that taken many men to roll it up there...
There He laid. The Roman centurion said He's dead. The guard said He's dead. They signed His death, and everything announced Him dead. They took Him and laid Him there for three days and nights. But early one morning... God wants to show His power.
I can see a bunch of soldiers in a run like a rabbit with a hound after them, just as hard as they can go. While standing by the grave, stands an Angel that just took His finger and pushed back the stone. I can see that dead form of face with paleness, no blood, where the spear embalmed Him... I can see the very blush of health in His cheeks. I can see Him standing there hollering, "All hail and all power." [Mark 16:15], [John 14:12-13]
40 Yes, I can see Him a few days later addressing His apostles to go into all the world and to preach the Gospel to every creature, "And these signs shall follow them until I come. The works that I do, shall you, also," and so forth.
Watch. I begin to notice, under His feet, there's coming light. He begins to lift up. What is it? He breaks, and defies the law of gravitation. That's power. Why was it? He was the center of gravitation. He begins to be lifted up. "And if I--if I go away, I'll come again to receive you unto Myself." There's God's power. There's breaking gravitation.
You know. Let's take a little trip just a moment, if you want to see God's power, and I ask you to be real reverent a minute before closing.
41 May you thoroughly understand that it isn't church; it isn't intellectuals; isn't knowing the Bible. It isn't any of these things. It's God's love, the Holy Spirit in the middle of that spirit, that you've quit drinking, and quit smoking, and quit lying. Then God's Holy Spirit in that spirit begins to make it work just exactly right. Then love, then--then you're on the mountain top all the time whether things are coming right, or going right. You still got the victory. That's it.
Live or die... Why, when they was going to cut Paul's head off, he said, "I fought a good fight, finished the course, kept the faith: Henceforth there's laid up for me a crown of righteous, Lord the righteous Judge will give me at that day, not only me, but all that love His appearing." [II Timothy 4:7-8]
42 And the grave looked back at him, and death looked back at him and said, "Paul, we're going to have you in a few minutes."
But that Mainspring was still ticking. He said, "Death, where is your sting? Grave, where is your victory? Show me where you can scare me. Show me where you can make me take the cross off. But thanks be to God Who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."
You see it? What is it? Who are you? How big are you anyhow? Or how... Who are you anyhow? Walk around the town, you and I, and a hundred and fifty pound body is only worth eighty-four cents. But brother, you act like you own the country. And that don't exclude preachers. That's right.
"Oh, I got the biggest church in the city; I don't have to...?..." You might not have to do that, but you might have to repent someday. That's right. [I Corinthians 15:55]
43 "I'm a Presbyterian; I don't..." All right, go ahead. See? That's all right. I don't mind you being a Presbyterian. God doesn't either. But if you just got that Mainspring in there, that's the main thing: that's the main thing. If you have, you won't feel that way about it.
I was asking a doctor the other day (Oh, a few months ago.). I said, "Doctor, I want to ask you something. Is it true that I renew my life every time I eat?"
Said, "Yes, sir."
I said, "Then is it true that there's sixteen elements of the earth in my body?" I'm made up of sixteen elements. That's right. It's...?... calcium, potash, petroleum, cosmic light, and all sixteen different elements goes together, and it makes you.
"Now, I want to ask you," I said, "when every time I eat then, I renew my life?"
He said, "That's right."
44 I said, "Why is it, I'm eating beans, potatoes, and meat, and bread, just like I did when I was sixteen years old. Every time I eat I got bigger and stronger. And now, every time I eat, I'm getting older and weaker. If you're pouring water out of a jug into a glass, and it gets half full, and then more you pour, the farther down the water goes. Tell me by science how that's done."
It cannot be explained only by God's Word. What is it? It's an appointment, and you're going to meet it. That's right. It was appointed unto man once to die, from that to judgment. And death set into you when you was about twenty-two to twenty-five, and no matter how good you treat yourself, how much Max Factor's puts new lips and a little thing on, it won't do one bit of good. Sister, you're going right back to that appointment. That's right.
You might wear a tuxedo and shun a man with a pair of overalls on, but my brother, you're just a little bit of potash and calcium mixed together; that's all. And you know that: made out of the same kind of material. [Hebrews 9:27]
45 Then look. When you took a notion, your mother did, to have a little boy in her home, her and daddy, or a little girl, did they call up the doctor and say, "Doctor, I want you to scrape up off the earth some potash, and calcium, some petroleum, and each day come and make him with brown eyes, and brown hair, and make it wavy, and fix little sis with the long hair and the manicures, or whatever it is." I wish... Did he do it that way? No, sir, he couldn't do it. Though you are the dust of the earth, yet God made you and He's the only One that can make you.
How does He do it? Through the food genes. Where'd the food come from? The earth.
46 Now, wait just a minute. Now, all you Presbyterians, Baptists, Pentecostals, set still just a minute and listen to this. All you that's so stuck on your denominations and how well you can do this, or what a melodious voice you've got, and you're going to sing in the choir; be careful...?... up in hell.
Notice, watch. Now, why is it then, if I--if I'm going to live physically, I have to eat, and the food that I eat turns into blood cells. It's a mysterious something that they can't take that food, and no other way can they turn it into blood cells. Only God does that, beating in your body... develops... They can't get a machinery, nor nothing else. Why? The blood cell's got life in it. And they can't produce life. They can't produce life.
47 Notice, now. Then every day, if I live, I have to live by dead substance. Something has to die so I can live. If I eat beef, the cow died. If I eat mutton, the sheep died. If I eat fish, the fish died. If I eat bread, the wheat died. If I eat potatoes, the potato died. And the only way that I can live is by dead substance. That's what... [Blank.spot.on.tape--Ed.] by a new life.
The Son of God gave His life that it might come back on you. Only li... [Blank.spot.on.tape--Ed.] If something doesn't die, you do not live. And if the physical being has to live by dead substance, what about the spirit within you? Something had to die so you could live again. [Blank.spot.on.tape--Ed.]... church not an organization, not a group of people, but the Son of God died and that Mainspring alone is how God ticks His church on. Not by shaking hands, not by... [Blank.spot.on.tape--Ed.] You might dress better, or whatevermore, but you live by dead substance. You might belong to a better church, or what you call a better church; you might be a nice lady... [Blank.spot.on.tape--Ed.] Not by your intellectual, but by the Spirit. "Not by power, not by might, but by My Spirit," saith the Lord. Notice. [Ephesians 3:16]
48 Now, let's take a little trip just for a minute. Did you know what God, in the beginning, when this old earth stood up out off the waters. It was bleak, and bare, and a desert. There was not one speck of life anywhere on it. Science tells us it come off the sun. Whatever it come from, or wherever it come from, there wasn't one speck of life.
But now, listen. If your body is made out of the dust of the earth (Get it.), your body laid on this earth in the beginning. Is that right? All the calcium, potash, petroleum, laid on this earth at the beginning when the earth stood up out of the water.
Now, watch what taken place and keep this in your mind. The Logos went out of God, the great Holy Spirit. And let's visualize it.
49 I can see Him with His two big wings as He looks over the earth, and He begins to brooding over the earth. You know what brood is? That's a hen with her chicken, her brood. As she... As the Holy Spirit begins to brood through the earth, I can see some petroleum and stuff coming together, and a little Easter lily stuck his head up for the first thing on earth then.
"Oh," God said, "that's beautiful; just keep brooding." After while, grass and plants begin to come up on the earth. The Holy Spirit kept brooding. Then what happened?
Along come birds flying out of the dust. The Holy Spirit kept brooding. And after while, a man come up out of the earth, and God stopped His creation. And He looked at them, said, "This is wonderful." But Adam looked lonesome. So he goes over and takes the little rib out of his side and makes him a beautiful little bride.
Now, I can see them, as in this day, little Eve holding to Adam's arm as they walked down through the garden, the paradises, no death, no sorrow. She'll never need any makeup. No, sir. She's beautiful forever.
50 There she was, holding to Adam's arm, and after while, the wind blows. And she said, "Oh, Adam, that wind..."
He said, "Peace. And it obeyed him. He was a son of God.
After while there come a great roar. Little Eve, couldn't get scared now. No scare about it, it's perfect before God. A great roar come up. She'd never heard it before. But you know, Adam had named him; he was a lion, Leo the lion. And he said, "Come here, Leo." And the lion come over, and another growl come. It was Sheetah the tiger. And he played with them, and they--like kittens around Adam and Eve, till it got late in the evening.
And Eve said, "Oh, Adam, the sun is going down."
51 And he said, "We must go to worship." Isn't there something about the evening time, you want to get alone?
And when it was time to go to worship, he took her by the arm, like the modern son of God does today to his wife, and they went up to the cathedral.
Oh, it didn't have a great spire on the top of it and plush seats. It was, perhaps, a bunch of trees standing. And as they knelt down and begin to pray, the sun was going down, and the Holy Spirit that had brood them from the dust hung that sacred Light into the bushes and as it begin to make love to them, I can hear Him say. "Children, have you enjoyed your stay today on the earth that the Lord thy God has put thee?"
"Oh, yes, Father. We have enjoyed this. Oh, we love it." What taken place?
He said, "Children, the sun is going down. I come down to kiss you good night."
52 You know what it is? I just love to take my wife by the hand, and go into the bed to my little Joseph, and pick his little hands up and say, "Mother, look at it. It just looks something like your hand."
She'd say, "Dad, you know I'd believe his eyes is set just like yours."
See, we were made in the image of God. And that strain still makes us love it. And how I kiss little Joseph good night, slip over to little Sarah, and kiss her good night, over to little Rebekah, and kiss her good night, there's something in my heart that just, oh, just love.
53 And when God kissed His first little family good night, and, "Now, I lay thee down to sleep..." He laid down Leo the lion. He laid down Sheetah the tiger. Nothing could harm them. Father was watching over them. No harm or danger could come. Do you know we're on our road back?
Now, they were the children of God because the Holy Spirit had brood them from the earth. Now, notice, be real reverent just a moment.
Notice close. After that sin came in. Now, look what it done. It marred man. God won't be defeated. This woman did what she did and has to bring life into the world. God brings you into the world, breaks you out of the dust of the earth, just as no other piling up of cosmic--cosmic lights and things will ever do it. You can't bottle up enough light; you can't put enough petroleum with it. It'll never make a human being. Only God can do it. And God made you what you are.
54 How'd He do it? Out of the dust of the earth. Now, look, if it taken the Holy Spirit to brood me from the earth, to call me out of the dust of the earth, and now I am based on the basis of free moral agency to receive it or to turn it down. If want life, I can have it. If I want to refuse it, I'm a free moral agent. I can take the devil then. But if I want God, I can take God. And that's before every person that ever come on the earth.
But look, by my own mental conceptions, I can't have it. What is it? It took the Holy Spirit to bring me from the earth. And if the Holy Spirit made me what I am without having any choice, how much more can He bring me back out of the dust of the earth by choice. Not my intellectuals, not my church membership, but the Holy Ghost that's brooding down, and calling to me, I'll answer back to It. He raised His hands and swore that He'd raise me up in the last days.
55 Oh, brother, intellectual will never do it. Mental conception will never do it. It's the work of the Holy Spirit that brings the human being to his place. Make your choice. Oh, happy day! I fixed my choice on Thee my Saviour and my God. No matter what the rest of the world does it's sinking sand, my choice is on Thee. The Holy Spirit that's moving down through His Word, saying, "This is My Word. Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of mouth of God."
"Yes, Holy Spirit."
"I promise Eternal Life to them that believe."
"I believe, Holy Spirit."
"I'll seal You." Then watch your life begin to move, not the church, the Holy Spirit; not the denomination, the Holy Spirit. [Matthew 4:4]
56 Now what happens? When the old spirit has gone out of a man, the Bible said, he--the devil is gone out of the man, he walks in dry places and comes back to found the house all swept out. You know what happens?
You once lived in old tin can alley (That's right.) where all the devils, and rats, and everything else lived, fusses, and fights, and stews, and arguments. But when the Holy Spirit comes in, He can't live in a place like that. That's the reason people today can shout, and scream, and go on, but live any kind of a life afterwards.
The Holy Spirit, when It moves in, It takes God's big bulldozer, and comes down and digs that old alley up, throws the dirt out, buries it in the sea of forgetfulness, and terraces off a nice big place, and puts up a great big mansion; and He lives there. And the flowers of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, goodness, and mercies, and kindness, and faith is blooming around this house. Glory. [Matthew 12:43], [Luke 11:24]
57 That's it. I just got to quit preaching. I haven't even got my text good yet. Look. That's it. When the Holy Spirit moves in, the tin cans, and rats, lies, backbiting, selfishness, indifference with other Christians, all move out. And if you've still got them, it shows the Holy Spirit has never terraced out your life yet. Amen. Get rid of your rats.
The Holy Ghost takes away them differences. It makes you full of love, joy, peace. Look at the flowers blooming around. Satan just can't step his dirty foot on there, for your life is dead, and you're hid in God through Christ, and sealed by the Holy Ghost.
Then what comes forth? Why, the Holy Spirit's living there? These flowers just actually accompany the Holy Spirit. Now, you can't go, and get some of these artificial flowers, and set them out in the yard, 'cause they haven't got any life in them. And you say, "Well, I joined church. I guess I'm just going to have to be this a way." You're a miserable wretch. That's right.
But when the Holy Ghost is there, It just automatically loves. "Oh, I could pull every hair in her head out. Ummm, that old Oneness, that old Trinity, that old this, that, or the other. Oh, I wouldn't speak to her. Will I go down to that meeting? Why, it's just the...?..." Oh, you old Pharisee.
58 A Pharisee means a actor. You're only trying to act religious. If you had the real Holy Ghost in there, He'd put a love in your heart for every man that believed the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Pharisee means actor. You're trying to act something that you're not. You got a artificial flower. Your house is made out of pasteboard, and rats has eat it up. That's right. The Holy Ghost runs the Church. The Holy Ghost is the love of God. Why men who tried to express the love of God, one of them said,
If the whole ocean was ink,
And the skies of parchment made;
Every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by--by trade;
To write the love of God above
Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.
59 That's the Holy Spirit. That's what Phoenix needs. That's what the world needs. That's what the church has got to have. Add love and joy, and peace, and then all your scruples are settled, and we're one big united Church going on to the glory of God.
Let us pray. Think it over. It's up to you. This is the Word. Will you receive It or will you turn It down? Are you guilty? Are you living in the devil's alley, trying to make yourself act like a Christian? Or is the love of God just flowing out, and the flowers are blooming forever right around God's great big holy house where the holiness of God just actually brings up these flowers.
A sweet smelling savour is around you all the time. You don't hear any criticism; you don't pay any attention to it. No matter, it's just as sweet and easy, because the Holy Spirit's in there ticking off your life.
If it's not, with every head bowed and every eye closed, would you raise your hand, not to me, but to God, and say, "God, be merciful to me and give me that type of life"? Would you do it? God bless you, you, you, you, and you, you, you, yes, over here, you. God sees every hand. He knows your desire. Up in the balconies, anywhere...
Now, remember friends, I'm only a minister. I can only speak as He tells me to speak. I try to follow Him and stay in the Word.
60 Now, if that Life doesn't accompany you, it... No matter, I speak in Christ's Name. You say, "Brother Branham, I've had some wonderful experiences." That doesn't do it, brother. Jesus never said, "By their experience ye shall know them," but, "By their fruits shall ye know them."
What is the fruit of the Spirit? Joy, longsuffering, meekness, love, patience, kindness, gentleness, faith. Does that accompany your life? Don't be deceived; were at the end of the road, friends? This might be the last time you get a chance to check up: better do it. [Galatians 5:22]
61 How many more here... Many of you ought to raise your hand. You know enough. God bless you, son. God bless you. Someone else? Raise your... God bless you. Just raise your hands. God will see you. God bless you, sir. God bless you, sir. God bless you, sir. God bless you. Someone else? God bless you, sis. God bless you. Someone else? God bless you, sister. God bless you, brother. Up in the balcony...
Now, you're the judge. Remember, I... God bless you, lady. Everybody in prayer. I'm going to stand at your face at the judgment bar. And you're going to give an account for what you do with this message this afternoon. Your mind, the way you're thinking now, is going to vibrate on God's radar screen at the day of judgment. If it's a thousand years from today, it'll still vibrate.
What do you think about it? Is them...?... there? Is that stuff in your life? [A message of prophecy is given--Ed.]
With the heads bowed... There's the Word of the Lord to you. The message backed up exactly what I said.
62 Now, would you come in confession upon the preaching of the Word, the witness of the Spirit? Now, you know your heart; I don't. You know your heart. Walk down here, right down around the altar here. Let me get you by the hand here. Let's stand here and pray and ask God to take that old selfishness out of you, them old ups-and-downs that's chafing you, and come here, and stand here and get a new spirit in your life today.
Oh, you say, "Brother Branham, I've already shouted. I've spoke with tongues." That's all right. That's good. That's fine, but I'm talking about something else.
Come down here now, get the Mainspring in your heart. That thing... God bless you, sir. That's good to walk right out to be the first one. I like that. Come right on down here now. If you are without that type of life, after... Tonight, maybe too far for you.
"Oh," you say, "I belong to church." No matter what you belong to, you come here. You ought to belong to Christ. If you're guilty, come. That's right.
63 Come right out of the balcony, come on down. Now, remember... "Oh," you say, "Brother Branham, I've heard the messages so many times." This may be your last one too.
... while I am waiting (Be in prayer, everywhere.)
Yielded and still.
Have Thine own way, Lord!
Have Thine own way!
Hold o'er my being,
Absolute sway! (O God.)
Fill with Thy Spirit
Till all shall see...
Don't you want to be that? Filled with His Spirit till everyone will know?
Christ only, always,
Living in me!
Come right on. Come on. You know, friends, there's more than that here...?...
... way, Lord (While you're praying say, "Lord, search me now.")
... Thine own way!
Thou art the Potter; (The Holy Spirit to bring a work...)
I am the clay (Do you want Him to bring you together in a real body to raise you up?)
Mold me and make me (Not make me after some church creed.)
After Thy will,
While I am waiting,
Yielded and still.
64 Be in prayer. I just feel... I don't know. I just feel that someone's not just exactly honest with yourself. And if you won't be honest with yourself, how can you ever be honest with God? How could you?
God bless you, sir. You... If you, in your own heart know that your not living a joyful, peaceful, life of the Spirit, yielded to the Potter, everything just wonderful... God's on the scene. And you won't be honest enough with yourself to come receive it, how could you be honest enough with God? See? Come down.
65 There's numbers of you here ought to be standing here. Don't tell me I don't know, for I do. Not me, but the Spirit of God tells me so. See?
Once more now. That's right. Come right on. God bless you people.
Now, just pray while you're doing this. "Have Your own way, Lord. Break up my old selfish way." That's right, that's the way.
Have thine own way,
Thou art the Potter;
I am the clay (What about this side here? Move in here.)
Make me after Thy will,
While I am waiting, (O God!)
Yielded and still.
Just have Thine own way,
... own way
Search me and try me, (Try me by what? Thy Word.)
Master, I pray!
Whiter than snow, Lord,
Wash me just now...
66 Won't you come, the rest of you? Move right up, you that feels, just that little stain that would keep you out. What if this is the last hour of life? How do you know it's not the last hour of life?
You're showing forth an honest effort. If the Word has went forth in the Holy Spirit... The trouble of it is with we Pentecostal people, we get too self-seeded. See? God wants to make us different. God wants to put that in our hearts. He wants us to be real.
Listen, friends. Let me tell you this. Why take a substitute when the Pentecostal skies are loaded with the real thing? Why try to lay upon some fantastic? Why try to rely upon some little emotion? Or some little something another there's nothing to, when Pentecostal skies are just crowded with the real thing. Don't take a substitute when you can get the real.
67 Paul said, "All these things I do, they'll pass away. Our tongues will cease; everything else will go; but when love has come, it will endure forever." Sure, don't take a substitute. No, sir. I want the real one, or I want to leave. I want to be a real Christian, or I don't want to be anything like it. I want the real, nothing but the real. It's here for you.
Pentecostal skies are just loaded right now. Pentecost is not... don't mean Assemblies. Pentecost don't mean altogether Foursquare. Pentecost is not a denomination. Pentecost is an experience, experience--experience that constrains you to the love of God. [I Corinthians 13:1-10]
68 Then what is these other things? Is attributes, apples that fall off the tree. See? But don't get the apple 'fore the tree. Get the tree and it'll bear the apples. You can have all the signs and fantastics you want to pick up under the tree and still not have the tree. The tree's got the life.
You see, you're just taking something that fell off the tree. Get the tree first, and it'll bear itself. But if your tree isn't yielding these things, then there's something wrong. That's right. That's what you want.
My, look standing here. Are the rest of you satisfied you made the right decision? Say, "Brother Branham, what difference does it make?" Well, it's just a difference between death and Life.
69 "You mean that if I walk up there and stand there? What if I don't get nothing?" Well, brother, what can you lose by proving to God that you want to make a effort to get it? How you ever going to get it setting there like that? Get a move. Get up. Raise up and walk up. Confess before the people. Look at these people here, members of your churches. And they're witnessing before God, and before you, that they know their life is short of those things. They might have spoke with tongues; they might have prophesied; they might have preached; they might've done all these things; but yet they know that something in there is just not there, and they're willing to confess it.
You mean the God of heaven won't look down and honor that? He's got to. "He that will come to Me, I will in no wise turn him out." I believe His blessed Word. And I believe that every sincere heart setting here beating this life, will get something from this prayer now. I believe it. [John 6:37]
70 Just think what we--what we Pentecostal churches got into. Let's take the "Psalm of Life" a minute. Be not like dumb driven cattle, have to be herded into a pen or something another. Be a hero; stand out there.
Lives of great men all remind us
We can make out lives sublime,
With partings, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;
Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing over life's solemn main,
For a forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.
71 Oh, my blessed friend of Christ, see your confession. Now, don't stand here thinking your not going to get something when the whole skies is full of His blessings. You might not be all worked up over it. Maybe you've had a lot of that already. It ain't working up over. It isn't getting worked up and emotional. It's coming reverently before God. It's coming there and saying, "God, now I believe. And You put in me that which operates my life."
How many of you standing here, believe it? Let's see your hands. You're already making your confession to God. You're rising up and standing here, proves that you're sincere in it, proves that you are.
72 Now, I want to pray for you first. And then I want you to pray for yourself. But first, I want you to settle down, everybody now. If you're all feel that you're absolutely justified in doing what you're doing, if you're sure that you're justified, there's not a spot on you nowhere, but your life is ticking just according to God's Holy Spirit, making you live the life of this Bible... If you're satisfied, remember this day will come into judgment.
Brother, I tell you, I'd rather walk out in the face of my pastor, church, and everything and make it right now than to try to do it then, 'cause you--you got mercy now; you haven't then. You're in judgment then. All right.
[Several prophecies are given--Ed.] Oh, my. May the Lord... [More messages are given--Ed.] Now, everyone...
73 O Lord, our God, how we thank Thee for these, these that are standing now. Solemnly, Lord, we come in the face of every enemy. We present ourselves as a sacrifice to Thee. And as one day when Israel was being just about, the enemy was going to take the camp, and the king was speaking; a man raised up in the midst of them, and prophesied, and told them which way to go up. And O God, they found that the enemy was so confused that they killed each other, and Israel took the spoils.
O God, in this hour when there is so much confusion over the world, may this little group now come to the Lord God. And may this little Wheel, called the Holy Spirit, this one that Ezekiel saw as a Wheel in the middle of the Wheel, turning up in the air. Oh, I pray that in every heart that's present, O eternal Jehovah God, O the Great I am, the all sufficient One, the--the One Who called Abraham to His bosom, call these Thy children. Oh, may we now take a hold of the bosom of God and begin to nurse. Oh, grant it, Lord. May every believer who knows how now to reach up by faith and take a hold of God's Eternal Word and nurse to their body that great and the precious Holy Spirit...
74 Take away all guilt and condemnation. Take all the guilt away, and may from this very day, may the Holy Spirit of love, joy, and peace, and meekness, and gentleness, and patience, set into every heart here, Lord. As Your servant, I intercede for this group with all my heart. I offer You, Lord... This is the--the fruit of the sermon. This is the thing that I am presenting to You. As a Gospel preacher, I give these to You, O God, in the Name of Jesus Christ, that the Spirit of love, and peace, and joy, and understanding, and meekness, and gentleness, will set into each heart. May the Holy Spirit melt down cold, starched, indifferent. May every root of bitterness be grubbed out by God's sharp grubbing hoe.
75 And may the springs of water fly from heaven, pouring down upon their parched soul, and the fruits of the Spirit bloom up from this Water of Life, from the smitten Rock. O Eternal One, grant the blessing.
Just keep your hands up in the air now and let's us pray. You all pray now while some...?... hand laid for the Holy Ghost.
Now, this, brothers who's praying with you, just keep your hands up. Don't you leave where you're standing until something's happened in your heart to change you.
All right, brother...