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Time-Tested Memorials Of God
1 And just winding it around through the Bible, the way we--you have taken the book of Revelations and the book of Exodus and Genesis...
And now, I've come home to go squirrel hunting. It's honest. That's just all there is to it, just to be honest. Brother Roy, when you going? Tomorrow? All right. So we just love to get home this time of year, so it... I want to rest.
I've lost twenty pounds since I've seen you. I got on the scales when I left from this meeting I weighed a hundred and sixty-five and got back, weighed a hundred and forty-five. So feels like my clothes is dropping down. So I lost a lot of weight. And some lady today, going out, lovely sister, she said, "Brother Branham, pray that I can lose it too." A little bit on the strong side, so I told her, "Just come go along and preach right hard." So that's about all I know. It certainly will take it down. But we'll soon be done with the troubles and trials.
2 I was thinking about getting old. You know, in two more years I'm going to be fifty. Whew. I remember when Frankie Webber put in... He's just about two years older than I am. He put in a quarter for his birthday offering here, and I snapped my eye, and I thought, "My, Frankie Webber twenty-five years old, a quarter of a hundred." It's a half now. It just doesn't take it long, does it, just goes right on.
3 We won't stay long. Just this morning when our beloved brother was bringing that most remarkable message, I'm sure we all enjoyed it, and I happened to think of something when he was preaching back there. I thought, "Maybe the Lord might give me a Scripture for that." I had him to read some tonight from God's blessed Word. And now, I... Just a few minutes to speak and then we'll pray for the sick as usual.
And Wednesday night, this coming Wednesday night, if the Lord permits, I'd like to start in the book of Hebrews, and the book of Hebrews for a lesson, and then maybe Sunday morning or Sunday night, continue it on, then following Wednesday night maybe pick it up again, just keep winding that around in the Scripture. And there's some things that I noticed in the church, just as I going by, that I think ought to be taught on a little bit, you know, things that seems to weaken down a little. And I think we could pick it up there in Hebrews; it's a very good chapter, very good place to read.
4 Now, Brother Neville, I was going... That come on my mind, coming down, and I've just got the New Testament here. And I'm reading from a Collins' Bible; the print's bigger. I've... After I've got nearly fifty, I have to push it too far away from me to read that real fine print, this bad light anyhow. And I can go out in the sunshine and still read it, but when the light gets a little poor, I have to push it away.
And doctor told me that soon I was going to have to have some reading glasses. And I asked him if my eyes was bad, and he tested them and said, "No." Ten-ten, that's supreme good. Twenty-twenty's normal and--and fifteen-fifteen's better, and ten-ten is... That's all he could read it, so I could read it anywhere he wanted at a distance. He put something out, and I started reading it, and when he got closer I kept getting slower and slower. I stopped when it got just about like this. He said, "Oh, you're past forty."
And I said, "Yeah."
He said, "Well, naturally your eyeballs get flat." Said, "Now, if you live a good long life, you'll get your second sight, I hope." That's when you read back again.
5 But you know, I was just thinking, "That ain't too far off at that, just a little while." Brother Tony, that's bad, isn't it? No, it isn't. It's a blessed thing. I'm getting older one way and younger another, because I'm going to that young immortal blessed body, where it's... Brother, there'll never be nothing wrong there. And I just live for that time; that'll be wonderful.
Now, before I read the final closing text, just a word to Him while we bow our heads.
6 We believe, Almighty God, that You intend for Your children to be happy. It is not meant for us to be frowning and sorrowful, for it is written, that, "A merry heart doeth good like medicine." And we love to enjoy Your blessings and to have this great fellowship together. And as we, as believers in Your Word, we fellowship around the Word. That's what we come here for, is not just to hear a message, but to worship and fellowship with Thee through the reading and preaching of the Word. Now, Lord, Thou will not disappoint us. I'm sure You'll bless us in these hours.
Bless our noble and good pastor, Lord. We pray that You'll be with him. And as I noticed him today in his preaching and see him as he smiled when he sang that song "I'll Soon be Done with Troubles and Trials." Those sisters and how they sang it around in the brush harbors and camp meetings, and it'll be done one of these days, and then go to that glorious rest.
Now, Father, bless us as we read Thy Word, and have read it, and refreshen to our minds and hearts and speak to us tonight. And when the service is over and we start to our homes, may we say, "Did not our hearts burn within us as He talked to us along the way." For we ask it in Jesus' Name. Amen.
7 Now, with such a real good evangelistic message as we had this morning, and I was thinking that... You know, Brother Neville was talking about over-feeding the children, which you can. But now tonight we're--just a little talk for the church. This is a--just a talk for the church. And I wish to read the--another part of the Scripture in the New Testament, Matthew the 24th chapter and the 35th verse, Jesus speaking.
Heavens and earth shall pass away, but my word shall not pass away.
8 My subject tonight is "The--The Memorials... Time-Tested Memorials of God." And I have a few announcements of--of... I believe I made it, for the... And some... Here that, about the meeting to begin with the Hebrews the 1st chapter Wednesday night, if the Lord is willing. Now, reason I have to make it mention that like, my m--ma--meetings, I could be at one place and He will call me another. I just have to go as He calls, you know. That's the reason I can't be like Brother Oral Roberts and those fellows who set their meetings two or three years ahead and "We'll be there." And those big burly faith men, they--they--they got their message. But my message is just wherever God sends, whether it's here, or there, or wherever it is; I have to go just when He sends. And it's two different ministries, only the same God, the very same God.
9 I was thinking yesterday in my talk to a neighbor boy, and he said, "You know, a certain little pastor," he said, "he's such a wonderful fellow." Said, "Wife and I were setting with our pajamas on," and said, "about eleven o'clock at night, he come by and knocked at the door, said, 'Just come by to have a cup of coffee with you,' see?" And said, "He cut across the street to another neighbor, and they were about ready to go to bed, and he eat a cookie over there. And just..." And then he said, "His--his... Had a little Bible school for the kiddies. And he had so many little kiddies there, him and his wife, until they had to put up tents on the outside to accommodate the children."
And I went back; I got to thinking, "You know, that's right, that--that's a--that's a wonderful little fellow." And I believe Brother Fleeman here, I believe his boy goes; it's a little Faith Lutheran Church up here, a wonderful little man and his wife. They're doing a great work for the Lord.
10 And I thought... I got to washing my car, and I--I become discouraged, I thought, "Why is it I can't do that?" See? Go around get all the kids to follow me around. I love kiddies. And why can't I jump from house to house, from pillar to post like that? And Something just said to me, "You wasn't called for that." He's doing just what God told him, but we got to have somebody to stand out here like the Oral Roberts and them, a Joshua with the sword, with a message of faith and deliverance. And see, we got to have those who can have the--that type and one can have this; but just all goes together to make one big unit; that's God's church.
11 Talking a few moments ago to a young lady, discouraged and heartbroken. And I was trying to tell her about how that--that a woman and a man are not separated, they are the same self person. Man made... God made man both male and female; he was man. That's right. And He separated them in flesh and made them different, but joined them together and raise the children as one. And so, the man, the burly and the--the sort, and the women is the--the--the love part of the man. So they are together. That's... God separated them, but they were both the very same person, m-a-n; and woman's called "wo-man," that's right, 'cause she was taken from man. She is a part of the man. But in--in life here in flesh, they were separated; in spirit they are one.
12 And was talking about men losing their affections for their wife and don't love them as they did when they were sweethearts, shame on you. You ought to do it; she's always your sweetheart. Absolutely, that's the part she should be. And you should treat her like that. Oh, never let that little honeymoon cease, 'cause it isn't going to in heaven. It's going to be just perfectly one there. That's right. It's all...
Looks like some women ought to said amen to that, don't it? "You never let me hear... You're always bawling women out and talking like." Sister Hickerson, why didn't you say something, or somebody back there, say... Did you? Thank you, Sister Cox, that's very good. Brother Cox, that's for you, ever where you are now. All right. Yes, sir. And we should never forget to honor each other; always be sweethearts; never let it cease.
13 Catholic boy come to me not long ago, his wife was separated. he said, "Billy, I hate to come to you; I'm a Catholic, and you a Protestant." Said, "A priest run me out of my home awhile ago."
And I said, "What's the matter with him."
He said, "Well," he told me, said, "I drink a little," and said, "of a night, I work hard." And said, "My wife thinks I ought to come in every night and kiss her and hug her and make it out just like that we was fixing to get married." Said, "We married, and got a bunch of kids." And said, "If we... That's time..."
I said, "Whoop, wait a minute, boy, you're wrong; you're wrong. That's just the same as it was before you're married. See? You must always remember." I said, "She's forty years old now at the time where she really needs your attention."
14 So they had the divorce court and he said, "I don't know what to do."
I said, "Go call her. If I go out there as a Protestant, she wouldn't receive me, but I..." He said, "Oh, she likes you." And I said, "That... You just go call her and tell her that you've changed your mind."
And so the next day I called the judge and talked to him. And I told this boy; I said, "I'll be setting right down beneath the floor where judge is going to give you a raking over. I'll be praying for you. Don't tell her about it."
So I was down there praying, after while I heard some little clicking coming down the steps, and here they come with arms around one another just all smiles, you know. He said... I said, "Well, hello there."
And he said, "Brother Branham, it's been some time since I seen you. (Yeah, thirty minutes. See?) Some time since I seen you."
And she said, "Why, Reverend Branham, I haven't seen you in a long time. Glad to see you again."
I said, "Thank you. Why," I said, "you look like you were sweethearts."
"Oh," said, "we're just doing fine, aren't we, honey?"
She said, "Yes, we are, dear." And I... She said, "Come out to see us sometime, Reverend."
And I said, "Thank you very much." Said, "Good-bye to you." Went by, the old boy turned around and waved back like that. They was all happy...?...
15 That's right, love conquers everything (That's right.), just--just love. You can have all your signs and evidences, but just give me love; that--that settles it for me. Oh, my.
Dear dying Lamb, Thy precious blood
Shall never lose its power,
Till all the ransomed church of God
Be saved, to sin no more. (See?)
Ever since by faith I saw that stream
Thy flowing wounds supply,
Redeeming love has been my theme,
And shall be till I die.
That's right. Oh, wonderful.
16 Now, "Time-Tested Memorials." Where I got this idea this morning was from our message at the Sunday school evangelistic message where our Brother speaking on Elijah, where he wanted to... The boys, the schools of the prophets, how they wanted to build some kind of a big school. And it come to my mind, and I was thinking of the thoughts of memorials.
Now, memorial is a--a great thing. We appreciate memorials. And many men in this life has tried to leave behind them some sort of a memorial. Nearly all men love to do that, put up at their graveyard a great marker. That's all right, sure. I appreciate that. That's--that's okay. And then many try to build great shrines.
17 One memorial that I'd like to refer to now is in Ohio. And there was an infidel; I forget his name. I got the picture somewhere there in my collection at home. Where he was so firmly against Christianity, till he wanted a memorial built to him after his death, with his foot on the Bible pointing down like that, and saying, "Away with religious superstitions and up with modern science." And when he was dying he said, "If I've been wrong serpents will crawl out of my grave." And when he died they were still shoveling the dirt into the grave, and they killed two or three big vipers.
And today in that graveyard, a minister taken a picture recently and brought it to show me, and hanging over the chains around his lot... The graveyard is a beautiful place. But his mound is nothing but a snake mound. And no matter, even into the fall and winter, serpents still crawl from his grave: a memorial. God forbid me ever have a memorial like that or any of you.
18 So there is memorials though, great memorials. I'm thinking of Joshua, the mighty warrior. What a great man he was, who took the armor of Moses as a leader of these two million Jews. Moses, being the selected, the called out, separated for a service, and Joshua to step in and take that man's place was certainly a great thing to do, to fulfill the shoes of this prophet, a mighty warrior, called, predestined, and ordained of God. Four hundred years before he ever come, God said He would deliver and would visit them. And what a warrior Moses had been. Never a man ever took the shoes of Moses to fulfill them until Jesus Christ could do it. And he said hisself, "The Lord your God shall rise up a prophet among you liken unto me. And it shall come to pass, if you'll not hear this prophet, and whosoever will not hear this prophet will be cut off." All right.
19 Now, this great memorial... And Joshua had come down to the river. And after Moses was dead, Joshua took his place. And God was with Joshua. And He said, "Now, sanctify yourselves, wash your clothes, and set apart, and come not at your wives, and on the third day God's going to do something."
Oh, I... One of these nights or Sunday services, I want to preach on that third day and show you what power is in them--that three. I mentioned it this morning in the prayer. Everybody had three things in the numatics of the Bible.
Now, "On the third day you shall see the glory of God." Now, it go--went to show he knowed positive what he was talking about, because he mentioned just exactly the time when it was going to happen. And I can imagine how Joshua felt when he stood out there before all those Israelites. Now, his word must be true and there was a swelling Jordan.
20 You see, a man's character is made known by his works. Whatever you are, your works prove what you are. No matter how much you testify, whatever you say, pro or con, that has nothing to do with it; your works tell what you are, tells what you are inside. Every job that you do manifests what you are. And you business men, if you just do a patched up job, see what I mean, just a halfway job, don't do that. If you can't do it right, don't do it at all. That's right.
When you come to Christ, if you can't absolutely sell out lock, stock, and barrel, and come to Christ, don't come at all. But when you really want to be a Christian, stand out, make it real. That's what God wants you to be. And that'l-that'll prove... Your works will prove what your character is. Your character is known by the works that you do.
21 And Joshua now, his word was at stake (Yes, sir.), just as--as Noah of old. But Joshua must cross over this river. And looked like he picked the worst time that could ever be thought. It was in the month of April, and that's when the snow was melting in Judaea and coming down through the mountains. And the old Jordan is muddy and spread plumb out into the--to the fields, to water the fields of Jordan. And looked like, if it would've been mathematical, or--or educational, or scientific, he--he picked the worst time in all the year to cross Jordan. But God likes to take those kind of times to prove that He's God. And men of God who believe God and know what God has promised, is not afraid to do it, because God will stick with His Word just as certain as He is God.
22 And when... He said, "First take the ark and go forward." And when those priests' feet touched that Jordan, no matter how wild she was and how she was swelling, it give away to God's eternal Word, for the Word was in the ark. Jesus said, "Now, heavens and earth will pass away: but My Word shall never pass away."
So Joshua, knowing that his word must rest upon God's Word, and he put God's Word first. Wish you sick people here tonight would do that. Put God's Word with your confession. Put your confession; you believe it and set it out there and call those things which are not as though they were; then we're marching on. Do it that way. God's Word will take you through.
23 And as the priests' feet touched Jordan, she just rolled back from side to side and the water stayed. Do you realize the roaring of that river would've brought forth a bank there and twenty minutes time would've been as big as--as some of these modern big dams that we got in the Colorado Boulder Dam out there. Way that Jordan sweeps through there, is coming out of the mountains with a great force, and she's sweeping through those valleys, and when two million footmen, with women and children, could pass through there, probably taking four or five hours or more, and what do you think that river would've filled up? But God stayed the stream (Amen. Oh, I love that.), stayed the streams, and she laid there until they passed over.
Then God said to Joshua, "We want to make a memorial unto this. Go out there and send each Israelite, one out of a tribe, and pick up twelve stones and make a memorial. And this memorial shall be, that when your children are passing through this way, they will ask, 'What caused these stones to be here?' And you shall give them the story of how God stayed the Jordan." That's a wonderful memory. Someday I hope to look at those stones in the near future, of where they still stand as a memorial.
24 But then I think of another memorial. What a great blessed memorial that was. Then I think of another memorial. One day when a woman had made the wrong choice, she decided not to stay up in the well watered plains of--of--or stay in the well watered plains of Sodom and Gomorrah, and be sociable, and live like the rest of the women was in those days... She didn't take the good choice as Sarah who stayed up in the barren lands; only she kept God's Word in her heart. And she was obedient and lovely to her husband insomuch that she called him her lord. And there's where God came down with two Angels and visit them in the tent.
25 But Mrs. Lot, she became very worldly and taken up with the things of the world. And what a lesson that is to us today, that we can become too worldly minded. And I'm quite sure today that the church in whole, is becoming too worldly minded.
Now, maybe Mrs. Lot didn't mean to do that when she went down there. She thought, "I'll just be sociable." It's all right to be sociable, but don't take up the habits of the world. When you go, go like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and Daniel. They purposed in their heart that they would not defile themselves, no matter what come or went. No matter whether the rest of the church backslid, what happened, they purposed in their heart. And they are a memorial today.
26 And Mrs. Lot stands for a memorial. And when God give her her last message of grace, when He sent those angels down there and told them that within a few hours that Sodom and Gomorrah was going to be burned, yet she could not stand the thought of giving up her social life to come out into a desert and to live like Sarah had lived, and out there in the desert and have to wear common plain clothes of the woman of the plains. She wanted to be in luxury. Her husband had become a great man in the city. He set in the gate as a judge or as the mayor of the city. And she wanted these luxuries. And she couldn't stand the thought of having to give those things up.
27 And as she went with her husband out of the city, she kept looking back, weeping and grieving because she had to give it up, to separate herself from that type of death. Jesus said, "He that puts his hand to the plow and even turns to look back, is not worthy of the plowing." What type of people should we be? I... He that puts his hand to the plow and even, don't--don't turn back, but just turn to look back, is not even worthy of the plowing. Oh, we should keep our eyes and hearts single. No matter what the other people do, what the church does, what the neighbor does, what anyone else does, keep your heart centered on Calvary. Don't even stop to look back. We've got no time to look back.
And this woman, because she did, God gave a memorial to all the peoples who turned to look back after they've once accepted Christ as their personal Saviour; she turned to a pillar of salt. And she stands there to this day. It can be seen in the fields, that the woman's standing there with her head turned, looking back. And she's looking back over her left shoulder, to look back into the fields, her heart was back there. Yet she was forced, as it was, to do this. And many people take Christ that way today, because they come out from the world, feel like they're forced to do it. And they keep longing and lusting, and it isn't long till they're back. And they're--they're horrible memorials of God's grace, of God's love as showed to them.
28 Now, memorials... Now, in the days of Jesus on earth, the Jews had built a temple as a memorial. And they had showed Jesus how goodly that temple was built. And he said... It taken forty years to build the temple, about eighty years altogether. For forty years they were cutting out the stones in different parts of the world. Forty years in its construction, not a buzz of a saw or sound of a hammer...
But you know, even Jesus said, "There take no looking at this, for I say unto you that there will come a time when there won't be one stone left upon the other," one stone upon the other. Just before He said these great memorial words, "Heavens and earth will pass away," temples will pass away; memorials will pass away, "but My word is the everlasting memorial."
29 The ark has rot years ago; the tombs of the prophets has fallen in. And all the different memorials have decayed with, hoary time had washed away the stone, but God's Word remains just the same, beautiful forever and forever, just as lively and fresh tonight to the believers of this day, as It was the days that It was spoke.
No wonder Elijah, this morning in our--the message that our brother gave us, when they wanted to build a great school for the prophet as a memorial, but Elijah chose a better thing: a miracle of God to rise up a fallen instrument and make it swim on the water. It was the Word of the Lord. And much better is he tonight who will receive the Word of the Lord in his heart for a memorial, than those who would try to erect some great memorial.
30 Not long ago when I heard, when I was in Italy, I heard of Mussolini, and that great statue of forty something feet high, that he'd built as a memorial to athletics, as he was an athlete. And I wanted to find that memorial. And you know, it had been blown into powder by a big blockbuster.
I stood at about two, three years ago on the place where pharaohs of Egypt had raised up great shrines and idols, and I... They tell me that you'd have to dig twenty feet under the earth to find even the ground where those memorials stood. I stood where Caesar Augustus, where the Herods and the great of Rome, and I went on the street and were he used to go down the street from the palace, and it's about twenty-five feet beneath the earth. Them memorials is gone. But that living Word of God still remains just the same and just as valuable. That's a memorial.
31 So I say today, brother, the things that you do, the words that you say, how you treat your neighbor, and what you do about Christ, will be a everlasting memorial. You might have a fine home to leave to your children; you might be working for some livelihood to leave to your children. But I'd rather leave them the Word of God than anything else. Those houses will vanish. That's perfectly all right; that's good. I have nothing against it. But don't do those minor things and leave the great things undone (You see?), because the Word wil-the house will perish, and the people will perish with it; but the Word of God will raise them up in the last days and give them Eternal and Immortal Life again.
32 And now, in order to make an estate like this, God's eternal Word... I think of this old song we used to sing here years ago.
Time is filled with swift translation,
Naught of earth unmoved shall stand,
Build your hopes on things eternal,
Hold to God's unchanging hand.
When our journey is completed,
If to God we have been true,
Fair and bright our home in glory,
Our enraptured soul shall view.
How much better it is to look out in the face of the setting sun when your veins are cooling in your body and your children standing around the bed, to know that you got a memorial built that, "Honey, someday daddy will meet you on the other side."
I'd rather have that when the doctor says, "Billy, there's nothing more can be done for you."
And I see my kiddies and I kiss them good-bye. I say, "But daddy's not dying, he's going to a rest, to a place. For if this earthly tabernacle be dissolved, I have one already waiting."
What a memorial to speak out of. I'd rather do that in the face of my children than to say, "Honey, I've got a million dollars in this bank and a million over here in this one for you." I'd rather leave that testimony.
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.
Absolutely, leave them for a memorial, your testimony.
33 How I'm thinking tonight of an old man laying yonder, in his last hours of this life, called the other day and wants me to preach his funeral, Paul Rader's tabernacle. That's my good friend F. F. Bosworth, a godly saint going to meet his Maker. And he said, "This is the happiest time of my life, Brother Branham." He said, "I'm so happy to know that I'm going to meet Him; I can't hardly sleep at night."
I've heard of Mrs. Aimee McPherson, no disregard to a wonderful woman. I've seen marks and this and that. I've seen marks of Smith Wigglesworth, and Doctor Price, and many of those great men, but not one mark did I ever hear anyone say about F. F. Bosworth. God, let my end be like that: a memorial of the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.
34 I think of E. Howard Cadle up here not long ago, when he was laying across the floor as a drunken sot and the--and the flies a blow in his mouth. And his dear old mammy down yonder had prayed, and believed, and held onto God for her drunkard boy. There, when he left the world, he left a testimony and a memorial of the grace of Almighty God that's sufficient. When God's Word is placed to him in prayer, God's got to answer for that.
35 God's building a church as a memorial, a memorial of His sacrifice. Christ never come to earth to die in vain. His death will not be in vain. God's able of these stones to rise children to Abraham. If people won't live in it, they won't take it under consideration and realize what a great gift that God's give them, God's able of the stones to rise children to Abraham. Truly, He will do it.
And when I think of that, and think of the great price that He had to pay. Now, good... Everybody wants everything free, wants every... That's the American way of life today: get everything you can for nothing. Brother, you get nothing that's worth anything for nothing; you pay for what you get. That's right. You have to pay for it, and it comes dear. And your salvation comes dear to God. It cost His only begotten Son to give Eternal Life to every man and make him happy tonight and live for things that's worthwhile living for. Not for to leave something to our children, no inheritance can be left greater than the salvation of our Lord Jesus. Certainly, it's not.
36 Now, great prices is paid. Time testing must come on. It's time-tested memorials. And the only memorial that's ever been tested right, has been God's Word. Oh, infidels has tried to put it out. They've done everything they could do, but It will never be passed away. It can never fail.
Abraham, when he received that memorial of God, "You're going to have a baby by that woman, Sarah," twenty-five years he believed it with all of his heart and denied anything contrary to it, for he knew that God would keep His Word.
Infidels today they rise and try to smear out the Bible. Before you could stop the Bible, you'd have to stop time, before you could do it. Every atheotic work, or every atheotic people, every communistic people, and whatever they are, every Buddha, every Jain, and every Mohammedan has to witness the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ every day. Every time you sign a letter (amen), every time you write the date, you witness that God sent His Son nineteen hundred and fifty-seven years ago. Brother, you couldn't do it, it could never be. "Heavens and earth will pass away, but My Word shall never pass."
37 Some time ago I was in New York, went out on a little island to the Statue of Liberty which was given to the--by the French government, to the United States many years ago. And in the hand is a torch light. We went up to that arm. There's a window there, and where this great light was shining, I noticed down along the side was a bunch of little sparrows, and they were all dead, laying along the side. And I said to the guide, "What's those sparrows? Did they get electrocuted?"
Said, "No, sir, we never picked them up yet this morning." Said, "Last night there was a storm, a great storm come across the bay here."
I said, "Yes, sir, I know that."
He said, "The little fellows got caught in the storm." And said, "When they got in this light, they tried to beat the light out. See, they just hit against this glass and beat." And said, "Instead of using the light to go to safety, they tried to beat the light out."
38 And then the inspiration struck me. That's right, men and woman who are trying to beat out the Light of God are just beating their brains out, and are not... Why don't they use it to go to safety in the stead of beating their brains out trying to deny it, and say, "The days of miracles is past. There's no such a thing as Divine healing, old heartfelt salvation, these things." They're just beating against the post. As long as they do it, God's great church is moving on and upward just as hard as it can do.
People rise up and claim to be this and that, and fail, and so forth; but the Church of God moves on. And the Word of God moves on. She's made out of the right kind of material.
39 Not long ago down in Australia, the great Australia, which is under the British crown. Is like South Africa, just across the way to Australia. Down in Sydney, there's a big city that comes around the bay there. Brother Beeler would probably know more about it than I would. However, they wanted a bridge to build, span from--from North Sydney to South Sydney. They had called all over the country to get architects, bridge--bridge builders to come down to build this bridge. None of them would take it. No one dared to take it.
As soon as they got there, they found out that the bottom of that sea was shifting sands; it was quicksands. And nothing would stand. And they tested it, and sounded, and went on. They said, "No, we wouldn't even undertake to try to build such a bridge. It cannot be done."
40 After while a young architect from up in England come down, famous man, reputable man, had a good reputation. Oh, I like that. I like a man with a reputation. Oh, you don't have to be a big man; you can be a pauper that lives in a attic and have a reputation far better than a potentate. Absolutely. You don't have to be rich; you can just have a reputation. It declare your reputation. What you are makes you what you are; it gives you your reputation. And you're known by your reputation.
41 This man went down there with a wonderful reputation. He looked the situation over. He walked the banks for a few days. He studied it; he tested; he sounded; he looked around. After while he went to the mayor, said, "I'll take the job."
"Why," he said, "sir, you know what you're taking?"
He said, "I thoroughly understand."
He said, "Well, this great architects, as American architects, and architects from all over the world, bridge builders has come here, and they're afraid of the job."
He said, "But, sir, I'm not afraid of the job. I'll take it." He said, "I realize that I have a worldwide reputation as a bridge builder, but I'll stake my reputation, for I can build it."
42 Oh, he had a vision. Before a man can make a reputation he has to have a vision of what he's doing. Oh, blessed be the Lord. That's the reason you--there's a heaven to go to. That's the reason we can have a reputation as a Christian. We know what material is in this building. That's right. The Blood of Jesus Christ is in this building. That's right. His stained Blood has washed away all sin. He took me from the alleys of hell and made me His servant; then I believe in Him. So I passed from death to life, and every believer has did that, because that they got confidence and they believe in this great Builder, in this great Architect.
43 Now, when the man did it, the first thing he did to be sure that he was right, he went down there and he said, "Now, before we get this bridge started, we got to go to solid foundation. We've got to go." He knew that down beneath that sand the breast of the earth was there which was solid rock. What did he do, but get great big pumps, and got in there and set great tubes down, and he blowed the shifting sand with these pumps until he blowed it plumb down to solid rock. When he got her on the rock he anchored these great big bolts in there and got it ready. And he blowed out each one.
44 And then He went over and got around him the very best architects that he could find, the best scientists, the best equipment. He sent away and got steel for his bridge. When he did it, he would not put one piece of steel, not even one bolt, until it was scientifically tested to see if there was any blows in it, to see if there's any little air holes, where in the foundry where they had made it and molded it, to see if it was tested right. Oh, what a--what a memorial that would be if--to his reputation as a bridge builder.
45 If he went to that much trouble to be sure that the bridge would be safe, how much trouble do you think God went to, to be sure this church would be safe? Yes, sir. There's a memorial to the death of Christ; that's His church. Some people don't want to live it; some people will. But it's a testing time; God's testing people today for His memorials.
A lot of times people say, "Oh, I'm so tempted." Blessed be the Name of the Lord for the temptations. "When I am weak, then I'm strong," said Paul. "Every son that cometh to God must first be tried and tested." And these testings are more sweeter to you and dearer to you than precious gold. It's testing time. [Hebrews 12:6], [James 1:12], [Daniel 12:10]
46 Long years ago before they had the smelters, they used to take the gold, and how they would know how it was right or not, with all the sludge was out of it, all of the iron pyrite (that's fools gold), all the fools out of it, they--beaters beat it, and beat it, and turned it, and beat it, and turned it until the beater sees his reflection in the gold.
That's the way God does His church. He gives you trial after trial, test after test, trial after trial, test after test, until the life of Christ is reflected in your life, until you become peaceful, sober, meek, gentle, humble, ready, submissive, willing, turn your head from the things of the world and looking straight to Calvary to the One Who's doing the beating. Many times you think it's strange because fiery trials, and sickness, and persecutions; it's only done to test you, to get the dirt out of you, to get the sludge out of you, to get the slowness out of you, to wake you up to the place where you can look and see the reflection--or men can see the reflection of Christ in you: Christ in you, the hope of glory.
47 He tested every piece. Finally he... Before he put a bolt on, he tested it. He tested everything. Then when he got it all done... Now, the scoffers stood by and said, "It will not hold up. It can't do it."
That's what they're saying today. "This here Holy Ghost religion you're talking about, it won't be long, that tree will burn down." But it don't burn down. Oh, the--the fire only waters it. It only gives us new hold. It only--it only strengthens it, every trial testing. Every time a wind hits a tree and shoves it back and forth and back and forth, it only loosens the roots, so it can go deeper and get a better hold. Every time sickness strikes your home, every time trials strikes your home, every time the neighbors say something bad about you, it's only shaking you, loosing you up, so you can get down and get a better hold on the eternal Rock of God's unmovable Word. That's how God does it; He sends those trials to test you, to prove you, to shake you up, and to give you a new hold.
48 Then, we find out, when he got all that done, the critics stood by and said, "It can't work." But what the architect knowed his bridge would hold. He knowed it would, because it would been tested.
That's the reason God said, "I'll have a Church without spot or wrinkle." Amen. She'd went through the test. And every child that comes to God must be tested.
49 On that great memorial day when they was going to--when the two sides... They started from both sides; when they met in the middle of the bay, the man who built it, he said, "I'll not ask any man..."
The architects all stand around and said, "As soon as any vibration hits that bridge, she'll go right straight down. It'll be dangerous."
No insurance company would give him insurance on it. He didn't need any insurance; he said, "My bridge will hold." He had confidence. Now, he must test it because his reputation is at stake. Certainly it is. And if it did hold, it would be a memorial.
That's the reason I know that old time God, heartfelt salvation will hold. The reputation of Christ is at it. He will not give us just something to build a church out of, not man-made theology, not upon some school experience, or build some seminary, as they wanted to this morning to educate preachers. The real preacher comes from the seminary of God's grace, God's calling. And it's time-tested. That's right. It'll hold. God's got confidence in you. We got confidence in Him. The bridge will... The old poet said, "My anchor holds within the veil, in every high and stormy gale, my anchor holds within the veil." We don't know what's a holding, but something's holding. That's right. She's anchored yonder in the haven. And there's a rope of salvation that holds the human heart, that a man's that's ever been borned again is passed from death unto Life, all the devils out of hell couldn't make him doubt it. There's something holds within there. Let her rock. Let her shake. Amen. She'll hold every time, because it's in Christ Jesus.
50 Then this man said, "I'll not ask no one." But said, "I'll go myself."
The mayor of the city walked out and said, "Mister, I certainly have confidence in your bridge."
He said, "If you have confidence in my bridge, follow me." All right, put it to a test.
The mayor said, "My car will be setting there on that certain morning; I'll go with you."
The railroad company called up and said, called and said, "Sir, we've got confidence in your bridge, we'll have..."
Said "If you got confidence in my bridge, bring out four full locomotives, stand on the bridge. You've got confidence, follow me. If you believe it's tested and tried, you believe it, come, go with me."
51 And many of the people wrote him letters to see his courage. That's what men looks for, is man of courage, not a little wishy-washy something. If you think you can get by by going to church and saying amen once in a while, and shouting a little bit, put your name on the book, and go back and live like the devil, your own works prove what you are. Your characters prove it out. But God... The world wants to see men that's courageous, somebody with courage who will stand out as a memorial of the saving grace of Jesus Christ. That's right.
52 The day when the bridge started, the rest of them come back, said, "Get ready; get your cameras ready," to all the newsmen, said, "because that bridge will fall."
That young fellow walked out there on that bridge, set his car down, looked back down, and seen them locomotives all lined up, and seen the Mayor there waving to him; he looked; he seen tens of thousands of footman standing back there ready to march with him, said, "Strike up the band." Brother, when the bands went playing, the whistles went to blowing, the horns went to going, I mean, there was an awful vibration taking place. But he walked right across that bridge and she never moved. Why? He took the forefront, 'cause if she was going to fall, let him go with it.
53 And Jesus Christ came from heaven to glory, from glory down here to build a Church. And the material that He's putting in it is time-tested material. You might come to the altar and make a confession, but when He finds blow holes and everything else in to where the world's blown the maggots in you, and so forth, you cannot stand; He just pitches you to one side. God wants a time-tested church, not somebody's a Christian today and a backslider tomorrow, and is in-and-out, up-and-down; He can't place you nowhere.
But He's got a church that's tested, went through the trials, through losses, through sickness, through sorrow, through death, and still standing with a testimony. That's the man. Yes, that's the man He's looking for. I don't care if you're a pauper; I don't care if you're a beggar. I don't care if you're a ragpicker. Whatever you are, God puts the test to you. He's looking for time-tested material.
54 I believe one of these days when that great church... When science says, "How can it lose? Gravitation will hold you to the earth..." Now, I feel religious. Let me tell you, that time-tested church will come into existence someday. There may be half of them sleeping in the dust of the earth. I don't know where they're at; but God's got His material all tested. One day He's coming to take the forefront (Hallelujah.), right through atmospheres, and stratospheres, and spheres, and spheres, into the Presence of Almighty God, He will go with a time-tested church. That's a memorial to His grace. That's a memorial that God gives Him.
55 "No man can come to Me except My Father draws him first." And every man that comes to Christ is a love gift from God, and Christ puts him to the test. And if he stands the test, He puts him in the bridge, tightens him down, gives him a position, and sets him there, knowing that he will hold to the end road. Amen. Time-tested material: "Upon this rock," not upon some rock of fanaticism, not upon a bunch of emotion, not upon a bunch of church theology, not upon some denomination, but "upon this solid Rock (Christ's Word) I'll build My church; and the gates of hell can never prevail against it." It'll be there; it'll be a memorial of His grace in the presence of the Angels.
56 When the Angels question Him one day, "Why did you go to earth," He will come back and present that church without fault, without spot, without wrinkle. There's the material. There's the thing, His reputation. He must do it. That bridge builder had to build the bridge. He must do it or loses his reputation.
Christ will have a Church. And He must do it because He came to the earth and become flesh and dwelled among us and became sin that we might become righteous. He become us, that we, by His grace, might become Him. He came to take our place as a sinner, to let us have His place as sons and daughters of God in the presence of His majesty. What a grace of God. How could we say them words are not right. "Heavens and earth shall pass away, but them words will never pass."
Little blind Indian boy a few nights ago, blind since he was three--three or four weeks old, received his sight, normal, then walked off the platform. What was it? It was a time-tested memorial of the power and grace of Jesus Christ. Blessed be His holy Name. Time-tested, trials, troubles, shakes and pull, it's only to find the blows in you, to see if there's any there. It's God shaking you and trying you.
57 Some time ago, the great Caesar Augustus, after a great famous battle, and had won a great victory, he--they was going to give him a celebration in Rome. And he said to them, "I want some man to ride, some worthy man to ride by my side while I'm doing this." Said, "I want some man to share these blessings with me."
And all the... It went through the camps. All the officers trimmed their plumes, and polished their swords, and made their armors real bright, and everything, and practiced standing straight in a certain salute to their king and so forth.
And each one walked up, their big armor before him, as he set out there on his throne watching. And there come up, officer with his big fine plume just feather-edged stood and made his salute. Caesar shook his head and he walked away. Another one come up, made his salute; Caesar shook his head and walked away, time after time, soldier after soldier.
58 Finally way down along the line come a little footman. He didn't have any shield to polish; neither did he have a plume to trim. But he walked up in front of Caesar; he didn't even know how to make a right kind of a salute; but he just bowed his head and walked away. Caesar said, "Wait a minute, who are you? Come back here." He walked up there; he looked at him, just scars over his face, and cut, and disfigured, and crippled up. Said, "Where did you get them scars at?"
He said, "Out in the battle fighting for my lord Caesar."
Said, "Climb up here and set down by my side. You're the one that's been tested and proved."
59 Brother, it's not plume trimming time; it's not educational days; it's time-testing time. It's a time that God is testing His church to find the battle scars of hard trials and fights and battles; that's the one who will ride by His side.
How Elisha was tested and proved before he could wear a prophet's robe. How Elisha throwed that robe around his shoulder, how he must be the right man. Elisha watched him there in the field when he was plowing. God said, "That's the man. That's the man that can wear that garment. That's the man that can wear that robe. He can take your place." Blessed be the Name of the Lord.
60 How His all seeing eyes a moving over the earth trying to find some man that'll wear that robe that he talked about. "Can you drink the cup that I drink? Can you be baptized with the baptism I am? You can," He said to them. So we today as a church, are to put on the robe of Christ, the whole armor of Christ, the whole shield and buckler and armor, that we might stand blameless at that day. He's looking for time-tested memorials as He can say, "There's my servant. I've tested him; I've tried him; I've put him through like Job. He still proves a hundred percent." God, be merciful to us, that we can take God at His Word and be time-tested memorials. Let us pray.
61 Blessed Father, we thank Thee, most holy God, from the very depths of our hearts for time-testing. Every trial, we do not feel bad about them, Lord, but we're grateful that Your grace was sufficient to help us through these great times of trials. As the men tonight, how it thrilled the audience when he mentioned "Amazing Grace." And when we got to that certain verse, "Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; it was grace that brought me safe thus far, it's grace that'll take me on." Oh, it thrilled the people's heart. We believe it was lining up with the message tonight, that it was a time-testing. "Through dangers, toils and snares." It was to help the Christian, the one who's examining himself now and know that he's stood faithful by the grace of God. It was to bring shame to those who has falls and ups-and-downs, and cares not, and loose living, O God, not even a battle scar to show the battle...
We pray tonight, Lord, that You'll sanctify the church by Thy great holy Blood, and clean out all that blows, and all the weak spots, and--and all the foul threads. Run through the machine again and--and retap them out, Lord, and--and make them material. O eternal and blessed Father, hear the prayer of Your servant.
62 And while we have our heads bowed, if there would be such a person here tonight that would feel, that God in His testing time, has never found you faithful at the post of duty... When arguments come up, or do you jump right in and partake of them? When quarrels come up, when indifference, when differences in the church comes, do you take sides with cults and clicks and so forth like that? Do you listen to gossip on the streets and around the places? If you're guilty of that, you've been blowed through by the devil's blows. Let's go back to the furnace tonight and be remelted again, and come out without them in us. Let God thread us down and get us ready for this great bridge to take its rapture. If such a person is here and would want to be remembered...
63 You say, "Brother Branham, how can I know that this immortal, eternal memorial will stand?" I will quote to you His Word according to John 5:24. "He that heareth My Word (not "goes to my school.") He that heareth My Word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, has Eternal Life, and shall never come to the judgment; but is passed from death unto Life."
Can you hear His Word calling you tonight? If you can and like to be remembered in prayer would you raise your hand, say, "Brother Branham, just pray for me. I want to be the right kind of material, that when Christ brings His church out that I'll not be..." God bless you, sir. "I'll not be shaky about it. He will place me right in church." God bless you, young man. Now... God bless you, sister. "I want to be..." God bless you, brother. "I want to be the right kind of material." God bless you, little one back there. God bless you over here, my dear brother. "I want to be found as real material. I want to be able to give the testimony of what hope that lies within me, the hope." God bless you, sister. That's good; that's right.
64 "What does it do, Brother Branham, if I raise up my hands?" You passed me from death to Life. That's what you do. You break every law of gravitation right there. See, if you was just a wax figure setting there, you could never raise your hand. You couldn't do it. But it goes to show there's a spirit in you, a spirit. And that spirit has heard the Spirit of God talking to you. And that spirit that's within you has made a decision. So it defies science; it defies gravitation; it comes up, shows there's a spirit if you can raise your hand. If you were dead, you couldn't do it.
But you've come to life. Something's happened. If you're dead in sin and trespasses, God can't speak to you no more, your hand will stay down. If you're not dead in sin and trespass, and God can speak to you and you receive life, you raise your hand. See, shows the life has made a decision. You've accepted Christ. You've passed from death unto Life if you mean it.
65 Mean it now as you raise your hand, saying, "God, be merciful to me. Make me what I ought to be, and I'll serve You all my life. I want to be found ready at that day." Blessings on you, my dear brother back there. God bless you, young fellow. God bless you there, bro... God be with you. God bless you, honey. All right, someone else? God bless you here, Brother Roy, and the Lord be with you, yes. "Lord, find me worthy. Find me worthy." God bless you, my brother, way in the back. Certainly God sees you. Be glad. Someone else want to be remembered in the prayer just now, "Make me..." All right, let us bow...