1 We're certainly a privileged people to be here this morning, be alive on the earth, to see another great time of Easter. Easter always brings such a--a glorious thing to us, the new hopes. And--and how great.
And just as I walked into the room back there this morning, someone met me and said, "Brother Branham, you know the--the little baby, or little child or someone, was prayed for at the Chatauqua last year, that had to have its heart removed, and valves or something fixed on it," Said, "the baby was healed and in the building this morning, that--and is sitting here this morning." So that's fine, we'll have the little testimony from it just maybe before we strike the other service. And we're just a happy people.
3 Now, I'll ask Brother Neville if he'll get the Scripture reading of Matthew or Luke, one, of the resurrection, if you haven't already read it. Have you, brother? [Brother Neville says, "No."--Ed.] So while we're making ready for prayer...
And now following this service, will be the healing service. After this service is over, then you go to your breakfast. Then after that, we'll return again at nine-thirty and begin another service. And then healing services will follow that. And then baptismal services will follow that.
5 And what a beautiful time it is for baptism. Oh, my. The resurrection, that's why we are baptized, because that He raised again.
I remember before we got our baptistery here, I used to take them down on the river down here, early, cool frosty-like mornings, and baptize the people down there on the river. There's something about it that just is a sacred time. Easter, it's a great time.
I was looking at Brother Pat Tyler sitting over here. I was just talking to someone last night. That our last meeting in Oklahoma, I tried to, trying now (and I'll announce this) to lay aside until God would call me to do it, my old ministry of discernment, because I think beginning, it's the-- the new ministry is coming in.
The other night, no one knowing nothing about it, I tested it on a child coming across the platform, had been borned blind, a baby, and was totally blind, about a sixteen-year-old boy. And just immediately he let a scream out, "Brother Branham, I can see." And there, and Pat Tyler standing near, right by the boy, when his eyes come open for the first time in all of his life. And so I trust that you here, with great anticipations, with myself, I'm looking for something God to do for us, and bring us up to another level than what we have been. Let us bow our heads now for prayer.
9 Our gracious heavenly Father, as we have gathered this morning, here in the little church by the side of the road, we are grateful indeed for Thee, for all this means to us, and especially on this Easter morning. If there had not been an Easter, we would've not been in the condition we are today. But that Easter is what sealed all of God's promises. It confirmed them to us. Everything that He ever promised, it was all made a reality on Easter. One of the greatest days of celebrations that we can have in the year. And we would ask, Lord, today, that You will comfort our hearts as we sit, waiting, and under anticipations for the Holy Spirit, Who came after Easter, to come upon our hearts and to comfort us, and to restore our faith in great powerful measures, that we might walk the life that Jesus has ordained for us to walk.
10 We would pray for each and every individual, and especially for those who are shut in and cannot get to the services anywhere today. God, be with them. And may--may this Easter find a real Easter for them, a raising from the bed, and a new health that they have never known before in life. Grant it, Lord.
May every preacher, every servant You have around the world today, that's celebrating this great memorial, may they have unction and strength and power to bring to their congregations (the waiting sheep) the Food that God has in store for His people. Grant it, Lord. We wait for our portion humbly, in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen,
12 I'm going to have Brother Neville now to read the Scriptures of the resurrection.
[Brother Neville says, "Matthew 28," and reads the following Scripture:
In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.
And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.
His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:
And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men,
And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.
And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: Lo, I have told you.
And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.
And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.
Then said Jesus unto them, Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me.
Now when they were going behold, some of the watch came into the city, and shewed unto the chief priests all the things that were done.
And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave large money unto the soldiers,
Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while they slept.
And if this come to the governor's ears, we will persuade him, and secure him.
So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day.
Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.
And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
... add His blessings to the reading of His Word.
14 Now, we would say, announce again now, that the services, and for the morning, will continue on at nine-thirty, as soon as we are from this, the--this morning service now. And then the... We call this our sunrise service. And we are--have some great things to report to you about the--the meetings that's passed. And we want you that's sick and afflicted, all of you to come with faith this morning to believe that this resurrected Jesus lives today, and He's just the same things He ever was. He hasn't changed a bit.
15 Now, I want to read a little portion of Scripture here, found in the 19th chapter of Job, beginning with the 15th verse.
They that dwell in my house,... my maids, count me for a stranger: I am an alien in their sight.
I call my servant, and he give me no answer; I entreated him with my mouth.
My breath is strange to my wife, though I entreated for the children's sake of my own flesh.
Yea, young children despised me; I arose, and they spake against me.
All my inward friends abhorred me: and they whom I loved are turned against me.
My bones clave to my skin and to my flesh, and I am escaped with the skin of my teeth.
Have pity on me, have pity on me, O ye my friends; for the hand of God has touched me.
Why do you persecute me as God, and are not satisfied with my flesh?
Oh that my words now were written. Oh that they were penned in a book!
That they were graven with an iron pen and laid in the rock for ever.
For I know... my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
And though after... skin worms destroys this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:
Whom I shall see for myself,... mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.
I would like to take for a text there, found in this Job 19, "I Know."
17 The patriarch at this time was somewhat like we are today. He had been in deep troubles, as we call it, "high waters," and he was desperate. Many days he'd set on the ash heap, and was trying to find words to console him, trying to find something that would give him courage, and something that would--would be a comfort to him as he seen his life fading out of him.
First place, he was an old man, somewhat ninety years old, and he has been stricken by the hand of God. Now, we know that God had not touched him with His hand, but that God had permitted Satan to touch him. God only has agents to do things. God wants an evil done, He just turns Satan loose to do it. And if He wants good done, He has His servants He turns loose to do it.
19 And Satan had touched Job for a purpose: to try him, because he and God had had a debate. And God told Satan that, "I've got a servant in the earth; there's none like him. Whatever I say to him, he'll do it. He's a perfect man, and a just man."
Satan said, "If You'll just let me have him, I'll make him curse you to your face."
Job, not knowing all these things going on, it brought the patriarch into a deep distress. Yet, somehow, when all was gone from him, he still maintained his position in--in Christ. "I know my Redeemer liveth," he said.
22 Now, we come to those places. We all come. And I believe that today, that we are gathered here for something like that same purpose. We are all on the ash heaps. We have our troubles, and our ups-and-downs, and our--our bad moments, and our sicknesses, and our heartaches, and our disappointments. So we come like this of a morning, this Easter morning to find words of comfort, like Job was trying to find from his friends.
None of them could give him any consolation. Because of his trouble, they were accusing him of being a secret sinner. Then in the midst of all that trouble, God came to his rescue.
24 Job was questioning. As he knew, not only was his sickness, and his boils, and trouble, and heartaches, from losing his family and all of his wealth, was just about to take his life; but he was an old man, well stricken in years, and knowing that he was going down to the grave, and knowing that he believed that there was somebody who brought him on the earth; he just couldn't come here by himself. And he knowed that he come from a father and a mother, but yet, that father and mother had to have someone to bring them. And it would revolve on back to the original, "Who brought the first one?"
25 And then he wondered this. "It's a strange thing that here I am, walking around, a higher life than what the animal is, and a higher life than the plant life." But yet we find that he said, "If the tree dies, it'll live again. And if a--a flower dies, it'll live again." But he said, "Man layeth down; he giveth up the ghost, and where is he? His sons come to mourn over him and to do honor, and he perceives it not." And he was wondering, "What was the matter that--that God would let life like that live again, such as flowers and plants, but a man could not live again? All this had him troubled.
26 And if we will just draw from this conclusion this morning... And that's what we're here for. We've heard the Easter story over and over, and read it back and forth; and today on your radio broadcasts, you'll hear different ministers approaching it. But what I thought for my little group this morning the Lord has given me; I would approach it from a different standpoint if I could, coming to a place of: Why do we come to these troubles? What makes these things come? Why should a Christian ever be perplexed? Why wouldn't not everything just run perfect for a Christian? But it doesn't, and we know it.
27 And sometimes we have more troubles when we become a Christian than we did when we were sinners. 'Course it is written, "Many is the afflictions of the righteous, but God delivereth him from them all." God promised many afflictions, strange feelings, and strange things that would be beyond our understanding, but it's always done for our good. Just can't understand it, because if we did, then it would not be of faith to us; we would go with an understanding. But we do it, and we have it, and we believe by faith His Word, that it's going to work some good thing for us. If we could grasp that today, on this--this morning. If we could grasp that all of our troubles... And there's none of us immune from them. And if we could realize that those things are for our good...
28 It is written in one of the Scriptures in the Bible, that, "Trials are brought upon us, are more precious to us than gold itself, for it is God giving us these trials." After we become His property, our confession, and our baptism, and our promise to walk in life for Him, then every trial that comes upon us is to perfect us for His glory. It's to bring us to a place where God can make Himself more real to us than He was before the trial come.
I want to join in this morning with Job to say that I've lived long enough to know that's the truth. I have seen it in my own life, that every time a great situation rises, that I can't get around it, or under it, or over it, God makes a way, and comes out glorious. I just wonder how His grace ever does it, but He does it.
And remember, in all these things Satan tries to make us nervous, and upset us, to get us to think, "Oh, why did this happen? Why couldn't I have been like this?"
31 A few days ago when I come out of the most prettiest and most gorgeous place I ever saw in all my life, it was the great building of our Brother Oral Roberts. When I seen that solid marble, not a window in it nowhere, but how it was fixed... And I've been in Hollywood and I've been in kings' palaces, and I've been in everywhere that could be, hardly, around the world, and all the swanky, lovely places and homes, but I never seen anything, any place, to compare with it nowhere at all. How the little aluminum wires weave the--the inside together, and, oh, I have never seen anything so gorgeous in all my life. When I walked through there, took my hands and rubbed those pole--pilasters, and--and the great granite; all in the form of a trinity of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, the--the carvings of it, all those things... I'd just come from Brother Tommy Osborn's, and seen his great, mighty work there for the Lord.
32 I stood on the outside, looked back at that building, and I thought, "God, surely I have become a hypocrite; surely I have become an outcast somewhere; for these men's ministries come off of mine." And I thought, "What? Maybe I am so untrusted, Lord, that You couldn't trust me with anything like that. Even the little, few dollars that You let me pay for the campaigns and things, now they're trying to send me to the penitentiary for it. And why am I such a hypocrite, or why am I such an untrusted person?" I was on the ash heap as Job was of old.
33 When I stood outside there, with just couldn't hardly get my breath, from such majesty, that a poor boy borned in a dugout, a Pentecostal, could do and bring that into that great mammoth building. And I thought, "O God, maybe I am not worthy."
Just then a little Voice came down through those corridors and said, "But I am your Portion."
Then I thought, "O Lord God, I--oh--I... Just let that stay that way, then, Lord. I--I... Because I wouldn't have the intelligence to carry on a great work like that for You. And I am an--an illiterate person. But as long as You are my Portion, I am Yours, and You will lead me. I could not lead myself. But, O Lord, lead me."
36 It's those crucial hours that press us on to those sacred sands. It was in the Bible. And remember, no matter how great the distress is, Satan cannot take your life until God has finished with you. There is nothing can happen to you unless God permits it. There is no evil can come unless God permits it. And it's for your good He's working that.
Let's think, there when the floods came to destroy the world, it could not destroy Noah. Noah could not be destroyed, because that God had a work for him to do.
38 One day down in a great nation under a great bondage there was some Hebrew children that we know as Shadrach, and Meshach, and Abednego. And it came to a place where they had to make a decision, that something had to be done. They had their--their--their faith was put to a test. And when their faith is put to a test, then don't fail. Stay right with what you believe.
And when they're faced, faith was put to a test. And they went through a crucial hour, not only did they go to a--a ash heap, but they went into a fiery furnace. But Satan could not destroy them, for God's purpose wasn't yet fulfilled. They could go in there with this hope, "I know my Redeemer liveth." They could go in there with this hope here, "We are assured that God is able to deliver us from this fiery furnace, but nevertheless, we will not bow to the image."
41 Satan could not take them. He could not drown Noah in the flood, until the purpose of God had been finished. He could not burn up the Hebrew children until the purpose of God had been finished. He could not kill Job with boils and troubles until the purpose of God had been finished. Neither could the lions eat Daniel until God's purpose had been finished. Neither could death and old age take Abraham until the purpose of God had been finished. And neither can it take you, or can it take me until the purpose of God of our life is finished. So we gather from their consolation.
43 And why does God let troubles come? God harnesses trouble, puts bits in its mouth, and makes it obey Him, and those troubles bring us into a closer fellowship with God.
There had been no rainbow until the flood came. But after Noah was pressed into that condition that he was in, to float forty days and nights in a storm and the little ark pitching up and down in the water, it was after the flood was over that he saw the rainbow for its first time, the covenant of hope, the covenant of promise. After he'd went through the tribulation, then he saw the promise.
That's the way you see the promise, after you've gone through the tribulation. I've liked that poem, or psalm:
Must I be carried home to Heaven on a flowerly bed of ease,
While others fought to win the prize and sailed through bloody seas?
We ask for comfort and peace; God gives us the best He could give us: trials and tribulations. That's better than comfort and peace. Our comforts is just beyond the river.
47 It wasn't until the Hebrew children was forced into the fiery furnace, on one of their most outstanding trials, that they seen One like the Son of God stand among them. Their troubles produced the Son of God standing among them in the breezes to wave away the heat wave. But not until they went into the fire did that Comforter appear.
It was Daniel who had purposed in his heart that he'd not defile himself with the things of the world, and was forced through a trial, whether he'd pray to God or go to a lions' den. But it was after the heat was put on, and he was throwed into a lions' den, that after that, he saw the Angel of the Lord standing in the midst of him, keeping away, that great Pillar of Fire standing between him and the lions. And the lions could not get him, because he'd went through the trials and temptations and troubles. He knew that his God was able to deliver him from that.
49 It was Abraham, after he'd seen the ground get barren, and the drought come, and Lot separate himself and go down to live deliciously into the world; it was after he had heard the whines and cries of--of his herdsmen, with no grass for his cattle, but he maintained in the land that God gave him and told him to sojourn in. And as on that day, after he'd been tried till his--his patience was at the end; it was on that day that when after the trial was over, he spoke face to face with Elohim under the oak that day. It was after he'd suffered his trials, after he'd went through the troubles that he'd been through, that God appeared to him in the form of a Man, and set there and told him he was married and his wife's name was Sarah, and said she laughed at Him in the tent behind. It was there that Abraham called Him Elohim. It was after the trial and tribulation.
50 Oh, if the Church could only wake to Itself today, to find that after the troubles, and trials, and laughs, and made fun of, the things the church has been through, the Pentecostal church, that we see God in our midst, doing great signs and wonders.
After the toils and troubles of day,
After it's all passed,
Then we shall see Jesus at last.
He will be waiting for me,
Jesus so fair and true,
On His beautiful throne,
He will welcome us Home
After the day is through. (While it's day, let us labor.)
51 All these great men, that would take much of our morning service away, to go into mention that they went through trials and saw God. They went through trials and saw Angels. They went through trials and revelations and saw signs and wonders, and things. But, oh, none of them saw what Job saw. All them men, after seeing Angels, and seeing God, and all these things, they never saw nothing to give them hopes beyond the grave. But Job saw the resurrection. He saw Easter. He saw the thing that comforts every heart. Then when he did, "Oh that my words would be printed in a book, oh that they would be engraved with an iron pen in the rock."
53 See, it... Everything had turned against him. His... Even his servants wouldn't speak to him. His wife was a stranger. There he set on the ash heap, that great trial. And the church come and turned their back to him for seven days. And no one to comfort him.
Then he must have saw the vision of Easter, when he cried, "I know my Redeemer liveth, and at the last days He'll stand on the earth. I know. O that my words were penned with an iron pen in a stone, that my words could never fade no more, for I know my Redeemer liveth. I know. I know."
What do you know, Job? "I know my Redeemer liveth." Did you notice, not only was there Someone living, but He was a Redeemer to Job.
56 Oh, blessed be the Name of the Lord. I'm so glad that I'm part of Easter, that I'm part of that resurrection. And we are part of it this morning, because in us dwells that resurrection Life, that as a partaker, brought Easter. "I know that my Redeemer..." What do you know? I'm not guessing at it. We got too much guessing today. "I know my Redeemer liveth." Yes, sir.
Now, what was He? If He lived, He was a Redeemer to Job. "My," personal, my, "my Redeemer liveth."
And what else do you know, Job? What did you see in that vision? "And at the last days, He shall stand on the earth. And though the skin worms destroys my body, yet in my flesh I shall see God, Whom I shall see for myself. I know my Redeemer liveth, and He will stand at the last day upon the earth. Though my reins be consumed within me, though the skin worms destroys my body, yet in my flesh I shall see God." Through that was the greatest vision.
59 Daniel saw an Angel. The Hebrew children saw the Son of God. Noah saw the rainbow. Abraham seen God face to face. But Job saw the resurrection; Job looked forward. All the patriarchs and great saints of the Bible looked forward to that day with an assurance, through their vision, through their revelations, that there would come a time of resurrection.
Now, we see great works go on. We see great powers of God. We see great things that He could do. You couldn't look at the sun and--and know that it isn't the power of God that brings that world around over that sun. You couldn't see a springtime come without knowing there was a God. You can see healing of blind eyes, deaf ears, know it's God. But what if that was all there was and after we died we was gone? But the resurrection, the Easter, oh, that's what sealed everything that God ever promised, was the resurrection.
61 And they have to have a crucifixion before you can have a resurrection. And before the church will ever be able to see a resurrected power, before I can ever see a new ministry take place myself, before you can ever enter into a new fellowship with God, there's got to be a self-crucifixion so that there can come a resurrection. We've got to die out to our own thoughts, die out to our own ways, die out to everything that's around us, go through the trials and tribulations, that we might see a new resurrection, a new Life. Before a sinner can ever become a Christian, there has to come a death, then a resurrection.
62 Before Abraham could see Elohim there had to be twenty-five years of testing. Before the Hebrew children could see the Son of God they had to go into a fiery furnace. Before Daniel could see an Angel he had to go into the lion's den. Before Job could ever see the resurrection he had to go in and lose everything he had; but then by a vision he saw.
And if Job by a vision could stand so firmly upon a promise, how much more ought we to do, after Christ has raised from the dead and become the Firstfruits of those that slept, and sent back the Holy Spirit as a seal of promise upon us, that we too shall live. "Because, I live, you live also." Seeing His great Presence among us, working, doing the same signs and wonders that He did on earth, giving us the hopes. And we come to the resurrection and then remain on our ash heaps? Let's get off the ash heap today with a new vision, with a new power, with a new determination that we see God in His power. We see the resurrection of the things coming.
64 We're at the time of death. We're setting in the doors of death. The nations is in the doors of death. Russia has discovered a new weapon now, as you all heard on the radio and things. They don't have to come over here and blow it up with a bomb. They can just bring a little something over here, and get amongst their spies, and spurt a little stuff out in any nation, and everybody will be paralyzed for twenty-four hours. Come over and, when you wake up, there's a Russian kicking you in the side, a big Russian guard taking over your home, ravishing your wife, throwing your children out in the street, and taking your home. They can do it. They wouldn't lose one thing. They've got it. Nobody knows what it is. See, everything working up in... Now, they can use that and not be afraid of it, because no one else has it.
66 We don't know how it will come, what will take place. But we know one thing, that we're on the ash heap. The nation's on the ash heap. The world's on the ash heap.
And because the world is on an ash heap, I'm so glad that the Spirit of God can come, and we can say, "I know my Redeemer liveth, and at the last day He'll stand upon this earth." Someday He will come. No wonder the poet wrote:
Living, He loved me. Dying, He saved me.
Buried, He carried my sins far away.
Rising, He justified freely forever.
Someday He's coming, oh, glorious day!
68 It taken a Gethsemane of drops of Blood breaking through His skin, before there. And it taken a cruel agony of Calvary before there could come the proof of an eternal God Who could raise the dead up. It taken a--it taken a Gethsemane and a Calvary to make an Easter. It certainly did.
How those apostles, upon that morning, when they were so discouraged, until Peter said, "I am so discouraged, I believe I'll just go back a fishing again. I'll go back down. I--I've seen Him."
They had great hopes, and believed and everything until it come that great darkening place. What was God doing? He was bringing those apostles to an ash heap. He was bringing them to a place to where they would--they would have their faith confirmed to them.
71 And Peter said, "I--I have seen Him do great miracles down on Galilee. But, oh, He lays yonder, dead and cold in the tomb. I believe I'll just go down to the sea this morning and cast in a net and just go fishing. Maybe I can look out across the sea yonder, and I'll find out. I remember seeing Him when He waited for us at the bank. I believe I'll just go down."
And the apostles said, "You know what? I believe I'll just go with you." Oh, they were blue. They'd cried until their eyes were swollen.
73 How we know to go through those places. How we know, we're all acquainted with those things.
I remember when I laid a precious one yonder in the grave up on top the hill yonder, called the Eastern, or the Walnut Ridge Cemetery. How I laid a little baby in there. And I had crawled on mother's arm, till I cried till I couldn't cry no more. I'd done everything that I knowed, till I took a gun, to try to commit suicide; I was in such a time. And it was at that hour in that little room up there on my knees, that the heavens opened back, and I saw her standing there in the splendor of immortality. It was in that hour that I felt her arms come around my shoulders, said, "Bill, you don't understand. We're so much better off than you."
75 See, it takes a crucifixion. It takes a crushing of the flower to bring perfume from it. It takes a crushing of a life to get the best out of it that there is. That's the reason Jesus had to be crushed to bring forth what He was. He could not stand before the crucifixion and say, "All power in heavens and earth is given unto My hands." But after the crucifixion, He could stand and say, "All powers in heavens and earth is given unto My hand." But what did it do? It taken crucifixion first.
It taken the crushing and the disappointing of the apostles. It seen their Saviour, the One they'd loved, and seen Him even raise up the dead from the--from the grave. They seen Him do that. And then think, "There He lays, cold in the grave Himself this morning." It taken the...
77 Those people who had seen Him open the eyes of the blind, seen Him stand there and perceive the very thoughts that was in the people's hearts, "How did He know," they'd say, "that them were coming after Him? How did He know? Why didn't He know Judas would--Judas would--would betray Him? Why didn't He know the soldiers were coming up the mountains there with staves and swords and everything to get Him, if He could perceive their thoughts?"
See, the Devil was working on them, putting them on a ash heap, for they wanted to give them a testimony of "I know." (Not "I guess, or perhaps it's so.") "I know. I know."
And remember, those trials are brought upon you the same way, so that you'll not say, "Well, maybe this is right, maybe the Scripture's true, maybe Divine healing's right, maybe the Holy Ghost is right." But when you get that experience and come off that ash heap, and you get the revelation of God, by the baptism of the Holy Ghost, you can scream, "I know my Redeemer liveth, because He lives in me."
80 Peter said, "I'll go fishing." The apostles said, "I believe I'll just go with you." And there was on their ash heap, down there in the midst of the sea, and the trouble going on the way it was. And I can hear one of them say, "Oh, how could it happen, Peter? How could it be such a thing that a Man like that could die? How could He be put into the grave the way He was? How could He stand to let them spit in His face and jerk beard out, put that crown on His head? How could He do that, oh, and still be God? I just can't understand it." Oh, what a disappointment.
81 And all of a sudden, they looked over on the bank, just the same kind of a revelation that Job got, there they seen what Job seen four thousand years before. There stood the Redeemer, alive and fresh, standing on the bank, with a fire made, and fish cooked on it like that, and said, invited them.
Jesus has a table spread where the saints of God are fed,
He invites His chosen people "Come and dine;"
With His manna He doth feed and supplies our every need;
Oh, 'tis sweet to sup with Jesus all the time!
How we can think that, how that it taken those great things...
82 How that the--Paul the apostle, that great apostle who had been through his time of trouble when he witnessed the death of Stephen; and seen his little face look towards heaven, and the rocks beating him in the face, and he looked up, and he said, "I see the heavens open. I see Jesus standing on the right hand of God." He said, "Lord, lay not this sin to their charge." And Paul holding the coats, that had put him for weeks after weeks upon the ash heap, walking back and forth, till His mind had been polluted, until he was on his road down to Damascus to try to fight a way out, like a man going to a whiskey bottle to try to drown his sorrow.
He was in the midst of that, when there come a Voice from heaven, and a great shining Light said, "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me?" He saw Him. He recognized Him, that He was the resurrected Jesus, the One that he had witnessed of dying, was raised again.
84 Oh, I can remember my own life on the road down to destruction, when I heard a sweet Voice, "I am Jesus. I was once dead; I'm alive forevermore. Because I live, you can live also." Since that time, putting my hand in His, I've trusted Him through the dark places. When the times come where I can't see which way I'm going, I still trust Him.
Every Christian believer has to be pushed into those trials. Every Christian believer has to be put on the ash heap, so that he can come forth with an experience, "I know my Redeemer liveth."
86 We don't come here this morning just to set and talk about some historical affair, which is all true, but we come here with a testimony this morning: "I know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. I know it beyond any shadow of doubt. I know that He raised from the dead, and He lives within me today. He is mine and I am His. I am a joint heir with Him in the Kingdom of God.
Easter, Easter brings a great thing, a resurrection, a new hope. Have you got it this morning? Is it in your heart? Do you know that your Redeemer liveth, and He makes all things work together?
88 You say, "Brother Branham, I'm setting here, waiting for the prayer line."
God's working that just exactly for the good. Why was that precious little boy, the other day, stricken blind when he was born? That God might get glory and turn a city upside-down. Sure, God knows what He's a-doing. God knows. And He puts us on the ash heap in order to show us His glory.
So this morning I say this, friends. After thirty-one years of ministry, after thirty-one years of toils of the field, I want to make my testimony to this: I have seen disappointments. I've seen the time I've asked for things, and cried for things, and begged for things, and failed to get them. But if I'll just wait patiently upon God, then I know that it works just exactly right, comes out just exactly right, does just exactly the right things.
91 When I lost my baby, and my little Sharon, I... That was one thing that stumbled me. I said, "How can that be for the good? How can it be for the good?" And months later, when I seen her standing there in all the beauty of a young girl, speaking to me, standing by the side of that old wagon broken down there. I knowed if she would've lived, she might've turned out wrong. God had to take her while she was tender and sweet. I know I'll see her again. I know I shall see her; I know it beyond any shadow of doubt.
I think of my wife of twenty-two years old, taken, just merely a girl, a little mother there. When the papers give a headline here, "Young mother of reverend just died," oh, how my heart bled. I didn't know what to do. But today I know it was all working for my good. I know the life had to be ground, and twisted, and squeezed to get what in it was, out. There was too much Branham in there had to be squeezed out before God could make Hisself known.
94 There was too much of you in you, till God had to squeeze it out through trials. And while that squeezing was coming on, it's hard. But after while the skies clear back and you see the purpose of God. Then you cry, "I know my Redeemer liveth, and at the last days He'll stand on the earth. Though the skin worms destroys this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God." These little trials and things are just for a moment, and they fade and pass away. But they're only done for your good; let us remember that, that God would get glory.
95 Shall we bow our heads just a moment. I want to ask before prayer, is there any here would like to be remembered in a word of prayer before we close? God bless you. How many in here would say, "I want God in the hour of my trial now to give to me a new experience, that I can come forth new again"? Raise your hand, say, "I want--I want this to be a resurrection for me, a Easter to resurrect me in new hopes, and new powers, new health, and new joy." The Lord bless you, my dear people.
96 Oh, our God and our Saviour, we are so grateful to Thee for this Easter, for what it means to our hearts. And by faith, over yonder, across the land, we can see the coming of the Lord Jesus, as He's making Hisself ready now, putting on His kingly garments. And the church is putting on, the Bridegroom putting on Her wedding gown. There's fixing to be a great meeting pretty soon.
This ash heap can't stand forever. When we're hearing people laughing, making fun of us, and calling us that s--scandalous name of holy-rollers, and making fun of us, and say that we're not even mentally right, oh, it can't last all the time, Lord. But let us be as Job, hold our testimony; let us be as Daniel at the lions' den, or the Hebrew children at the fiery furnace, or Abraham in his journey.
98 Help us, O Lord, to stand true until we see that great thing take place, "When the trumpet shall sound, and the dead in Christ shall rise, we which are alive and remain shall be changed in a moment in a twinkling of an eye." And then will come that Easter for us, that Christ enjoyed some nineteen hundred years ago this morning, and said, "Because I live, you live also."
"This same Jesus, that was taken up from the midst of us, shall come back just the way He went." We shall see Him, even every scar in His hand and every thorn print on His head. We shall see Him.
Oh, I shall know Him, I shall know Him,
And redeemed by His side I shall stand.
100 Yes, Lord, my poor heart, as thi--this feeble body of mine begins to bend beneath the load, the cares and toils of the harvest field, the mission fields, and the ups-and-downs, and the indifference between arrogant ministers, and so forth, across the place, and the people scorning, and evil powers... But, O Lord, someday we're coming like Elijah, down to the river, look over there, harnessed to every bush, a chariot of fire that'll pack us away. Let us know that these ash heaps are only veils to hide us from that great thing that just lays ahead, that great glory.
May we remain true like Job, until we can see Him face to face. May we be as true as our Lord was, as our example, to go to Calvary to--ready to be crucified, and be crucified with Him, that there might be a resurrection in our life. Grant it, Lord.
May, if there be any scorners here, that was like Paul of old, that's made fun, may they find the Easter on their road home this morning. Grant it, Lord.
We pray, Lord, that those that are on the ash heap of destruction, ash heap of sickness, that this will be the hour that they will be delivered.
104 Last night, speaking to that little woman out at the trailer and her husband, how that yonder in Phoenix, in a serious condition, and those big cancers laying up there on them, and now today is perfectly well and normal. And the little baby that was going to have its heart taken out, sets here in the building this morning, normal, well. A little blind boy that once walked in darkness and never see daylight, walks today and sees the light of day. And, O God, how we thank You for this. And it's all looking beyond the veil, to that great day of resurrection. Grant it, Father. Let them know that these things had to be that way, that these--little blind boy could see, that the little child having heart trouble might give a testimony to others. All these things work around together for good to them that love You.
105 All made possible to us because there was One obedient in trial, there was One Who stood the test; that was Jesus. The One Who was so obedient to the Father, till the Father raised Him up on Easter morning, because it was not possible that He should be holding of death. "For I will not suffer My holy One to see corruption, neither will I leave His soul in hell." For He was found faithful, always doing that which pleased the Father.
God, may we ever be faithful at the post of duty. No matter what our trials is and our troubles, whatever, may we be able to say always, "I know that all things work together for good to them that love God." Grant it, Father.
We bless these people this morning with Thy blessings. They've come early from their places; they've come to the Tabernacle. They've come to get comfort. May they go home this morning with the power of the Holy Ghost burning in their hearts, walking along the road like those coming from Emmaus, saying, "Did not our hearts burn within us as He talked to us along the way?" Grant it, Father. I commit them to Thee now, in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
108 All right, Brother Neville. And now remember the services. We won't have prayer cards this morning, because that, if we have prayer cards, as long as I get them people standing here like that, I'll still rely upon that gift. I've got to have a place till I lay that aside, where I can walk out here and can... I'm afraid. I seem to be a-scared, and I'm afraid I'll make a mistake. To lose a battle's not lose a war. Patton lost several battles, but he never lost a war. That's right. And we'll lose lots of battles too, but we'll not lose the war. I'll make many mistakes, but I won't lose the cause God gave it, and God will take care of it. It's--it's anointing. And now it's time, I believe the hour is, and I'm beginning, being it's Easter this day, I'm going to go to--go along like I did there praying for the sick. And if I can... It's anointing. It's something has to happen within me. I'm not too used to it. It comes in such a way, I maybe not be able to detect it just right, but I've got to keep going at it until I do know it every time. So this will be the day that I'll try, by the grace of God.
The Lord bless you now. Brother Neville. And the services will begin at nine-thirty. Brother Neville.