The Seven Seals  by William M. Branham

Chapter 1: God Hiding Himself In Simplicity, Then Revealing Himself In The Same 63-0317M (Continued)

Day 6

298  Now, turn over to Malachi with me, the last book of the—last of the prophets in the Old Testament. Now, and in Malachi, listen here; Malachi picks it up just at the end time, so they be sure not to forget it. Malachi the 3rd chapter: Behold, I'll send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, who you delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts. See? Still speaking of John… "Send My messenger before Me to prepare the way." Jesus spoke of it in Matthew 11:10. Said, "If you can receive it, that's who was spoken of, 'Behold I send my messenger before my face…'" See? That's right.
300  Now, how all this spoke. When it had been for seven hundred years there was to be a forerunner come before the Messiah; but when he came on the scene in such simplicity, they missed him. They missed him. Remember, he was a priest's son. Well, look how ridiculous that was for him not to follow the office of his father, go back to the seminary, but his job was too important. At nine years old he went into the wilderness, and he came out preaching. They missed it. He was so simple, too simple for their high-polished education to believe such a one. They thought when this man come… "How about: 'All the high places will be made low; all the low places be made high; all the rough places be made plain'?" David saw it and said, "The—the mountains skipped like little lambs and the leaves clapped their hands."
303  What, did it happen? An old whiskered guy like that with no education at all, with a piece of sheepskin wrapped around him, came stumbling out of the wilderness of Judaea saying, "Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand. And you bunch of snakes, don't you think to say 'I belong to a certain organization.' God's able of these stones to rise children to Abraham." My. "Well, that's not him there. We know that's not him." But it was him. See? He was making the path clean. See? There's when the rough places was made plain. There's where the high places was brought down. "Don't you think you got Abraham to your father? Don't begin to tell me that kind of stuff, 'cause God's able of these stones to rise children to Abraham." The high places was brought down. Oh my. That's it. Yes. See the difference?
305  He said that's what would take place. And when they come, they thought, "Oh, my." They was just ready to receive him, if he come to their own organization. But because he come like that, in such a simple way, yet in interpreting the Scriptures, the high places was made low. They didn't want to accept it, but they was. Boy, he shaved them off. He shook the hide right off them. Said, "You bunch of vipers. You snakes in the grass. I tell you the axe is laid to the root of the tree, and every tree that won't bring forth the fruits is cut down and cast into the fire. And I indeed will baptize you with water, but there's coming One after me Who's mightier than I. He will baptize you with the Holy Ghost and Fire, and His fan is in His hand. He will thoroughly purge the floors, and…?… of straw, burn up the chaff, and take the wheat to the garner." Amen. That was when the rough places was made plain (See?), but the people didn't get it; but it's just exactly with the Word, just exactly the way the Word said it, so simple that they missed it. They missed seeing it. Don't you be that blind. See? Don't you be that blind.
308  So listen. Now, they missed it. He was so simple for their common beliefs of such a person that he missed it. Again, what was it? God, which is the Word, hiding in simplicity, not a priest with his collar turned around, with smart education. Jesus asked them the same thing. He said, "What'd you go out to see?" when John's disciples come over. Said, "What'd you go to see? Did you go to see a man dressed with a priest robe on, you know, and soft clothing," He said, "that—that—that kind of a preacher?" He said, "Did you go to see that?" He said, "No". "Them kind kiss the babies, and, you know, and bury the dead." They—they don't know nothing about a two-handed sword on the battlefront. They was out there, some intellectual speech to some Kiwanis Club or something, you know. They're all right there, but when it comes out there it's battle to face it, they know nothing about it. See? Cause they—they—they're in kings' palaces. They fool around with that kind of celebrity." But said then, "What did you go to see? Did you go to see a reed shaken with any wind? A man that could say… Somebody'd say, 'You know, you belong to the—you belong to the Oneness, but if you'll come over here to the Assemblies, I'll tell you what I do: we'll—we'll make it…" "I believe I'll do that," a reed shaken… Not John. No, no, no, no.
313  "If you'll come and be a Sadducee and not be a Pharisee, or something or other. You didn't see anybody shook with the wind, not John." No, sir, brother. Not him. He said, "Then, what did you go to see? A prophet?" It'd take a prophet to do that. See? He said, "Now…" That was the evidence of a prophet. See? The Word of God with him. The Word comes to the prophet. See? Said, "What did you go to see, a prophet?" He said, "Yes, that's right." "But I say to you, even more than a prophet," for he was. Why was he more than a prophet? He was a messenger of the Covenant, that bridged the way between law and grace. He was the keystone in there that been spoke of. He said, "If you can receive it, this is he who the prophet spoke of. 'Behold (a… Malachi 3) I'll send My messenger before My face (See?) and he will prepare the way before Me." See? Oh, he was so simple, God again hiding in simplicity.
316  Then and watch what he done. He preached such a mighty Christ coming; "He's got His fan in His hand. He will—He's fanning His way. I mean He will thoroughly purge His floors. He will take up the trash and sweep it out yonder and burn it. That's right. He will gather up the grain and take it into the garner." See, he was inspired. But when Jesus come, they was looking for… And all them apostles, you know, they was looking for a great something to come. My, my. "Boy, He's coming. That's all there is to it. Boy, He will be mighty. He will kick them Romans off the face of the earth. My, He will make them Greeks go this way and Romans go that when He come." When He come, a little humble Fellow being pushed around from one side to the other. What was it? God hiding Himself in simplicity. Oh, my.
319  Then He stood at the end of His message and said, "Who can condemn Me of sin? What all the Bible said that I would do, if I do not the works of My Father, then condemn Me. But what did the Scriptures say that I would do that I haven't done?" Sin is unbelief you know." Who can accuse Me? If I cast out devils by the fingers of God, then show Me what you're doing by." Simplicity: even surrendered Himself unto death, but, oh, on that Easter morning. Hallelujah. That's where He purged the floor. He swept out the trash all right, brother. Yes, indeed. And the wheat was sealed in the garner—laying there in the ground with Eternal Life resting there, waiting for that great day that we're going to speak of the coming of the Lord when that life will come to Life, and we'll rise in that resurrection, be caught away with Him in the air and be gathered into the garner. And the trash will be burnt yonder, the husk that's wrapped around and tried to pull it this way or that way, will be burnt with unquenchable fire. Amen. Oh, isn't He wonderful? They missed Him: God in simplicity.
321  Why? Why, He never even preached in the ecclesiastical terms. He never. He never preached like a preacher. See? He preached like a… He used the terms of simplicity of God, the terms like "the axe is laid"; the terms of the "tree," the terms of "snakes," not some seminary teacher, as in the ecclesiastics of the day, like a Doctor of Divinity, Doctor So-and-so. He didn't do that. He preached like a woodsman out yonder somewhere. He talked about axes and trees and serpents and things like that, and wheat and garners, and everything like that. He'd be considered today a, I guess, a "soapbox preacher." I think He was called a "stump preacher" in that day, standing on a stump down there by Jordan…?… God in simplicity, hiding from the wisdom of the world…
322  Now, let's find out… Jesus said, "I thank Thee, Father, Thou has hid these things from the wise of the world and is going to reveal it to babies such as will learn." See? God hiding in simplicity in Christ, God hiding in simplicity in John… See? Just… See, He was—He was… Just think of it. God in simplicity, hiding Himself from the wisdom of the world. Now, we'll close in just a minute or two, 'cause I don't want to hold you no longer.
324  Look. Let's stop just a minute: something personal. Think of the day that we're living in (to close this off now). Think of the day we're living in: when God coming down in a little old humble place that we've been dwelling, healing the sick. And the rich and the haughty and the high scholared, "Days of miracles is passed. There's no such thing as divine healing."… You remember the message I preached from right across this piece of ground here, the morning that I left, about David and Goliath? Said, "How you going to meet an educated world out there, Brother Branham, with all this?" I said, "I can't help how I'm going to meet it, God said go." See? That's all. See? It's His Word; He promised it. The hour is here.
328  When that Angel, that you see in that picture over there, come down on the river down there that day, thirty years ago this coming June or thirty-three years ago, rather, this coming June, and said, "As John the Baptist was sent forth," (before five thousand people or more) "the hour has come when your message will spray the world." You remember the criticism if any you were there… I guess Roy Slaughter or some of them setting here might remember the day, or some—Mrs. Spencer or ever who would be—some of the old people here that would—would know. See? George Wright or some of them (See?), who know that, how it was… But hasn't it done it? It did it. And then in the midst when the—they turned down and said, "It's just a mental healing." And God turned right back around and sent an old dumb opossum in there and was healed by the power of God.
331  Lyle Wood and Banks, when we was setting down there and know the God a-vindicated truth when a little old dead minnow fish, laying on the water, and the Holy Spirit spoke the day before, He was going to show them His glory and do something about it. And there that morning, standing there, the Holy Spirit come down in that boat, and I raised up and spoke to that fish, and it laying on the water dead for a half hour, its gills and entrails pulled out of its mouth; it come to life and swam away as good as any other fish. What is it? God hiding Himself in simplicity.
332  God's able of these stones to rise children to Abraham. God's able to heal a opossum, or a fish, or anything. If He will bring His message forth and the people won't believe it, God can raise up a opossum to believe it. Hallelujah. God can raise a dead fish; He can raise a dead opossum; He can—He can do anything He wants to do. What a rebuke to this generation, when they stumble over it and fuss about it, and "You didn't do this and do that," and God sent a simple animal in. See? What a rebuke. What was it? God in simplicity (See?), showing Himself to be great. Oh, my. Rebuke these men of this generation of their unbelief.
334  Now, they think now like they always have: "It must be done in their own way. Now, if there's such a thing as divine healing…" Like a Catholic man told me, this fellow, the other night, told me about that. You know, about… Said this Ayers that I went to see about his boy there at Houston. He said—he said, "Well now, if—if that was a gift of God, it'd have to come in the Catholic church." You see? See? Yeah. The Methodists thought It'd have to come in their church, and the Pentecostals thought It'd have to come to their church, but It didn't come in any of them. And It come in the power of the resurrection of Jesus Christ Who manifested Hisself. That's right. Sure He does. Yeah. Just watch it. Don't let it pass from you. Keep it under your—your heart and remember; ponder it there. Got to come in their own way, for their, from their own denomination. And except it does that, it isn't Him. See? "It's just psychology, or it's the devil." It's a—it's—it's not God, because if it was God, He'd have to come in their own way, you see, "The way we've got it interpreted…"
337  That's the way that Jesus had to come to the Pharisees. It had to be that way. See? If there… If God was going to—to send a Messiah, they had it all interpreted just how He must be, and because He come different, then it wasn't the Messiah. He was the illegitimate something; He was the Beelzebub. But it was God hiding in simplicity. The forerunner must be a certain educated man that there… Well, one no doubt each day, each year when they—they ordained their ministers and sent them out as missionaries to proselyte and bring in… Each one thought, "This will be that forerunner that comes forth," but God raised him out of the wilderness where there wasn't no seminary at all (You see?), and things like that. See? God hiding Himself in humility and in simplicity…
339  But now, wait. In closing we say this: But to reject God's simple message… To—to—to reject it, God's simple way, is to be destroyed eternally. Now, that's how much we talk how simple it is, and people think, well, they can laugh at it and run over it and treat it any way they want to, but it's eternal separation from God. Those who died in the days of Noah and did not listen to his message, they perished. And Jesus went and preached to them in the chains of darkness in His death before He rose up, and He went to hell and preached to the spirits was in prison that repented not in the long-suffering of the days of Noah while a simple message of God by a simple man was being preached. He went. He said, "Noah preached that I would be here, and here I am." That's right. See? 341  Those who failed to listen to that prophet's message, Moses out there in the wilderness, that he received from God, properly vindicated by a Pillar of Fire and was led out in the wilderness, and then tried to raise up and make an organization by it, and they perished and died in the wilderness, every one of them but two men, Joshua and Caleb. And over there, the—the Pharisees was so blind they couldn't see that, so they looked back and said, "Our fathers eat man—eat manna in the wilderness." And Jesus said, "And they are everyone dead."
343  They seen the glory of God; they walked in the Light of the… They walked in the Light. They walked in the Light of the Pillar of Fire. They walked in the presence of Its power. They walked through the places that the Holy Spirit made for them to walk. They eat the manna that fell out of heaven that God provided and lost and went to hell. They're every one dead. And if you take that word, it's eternal separations from the Presence of God. They're every one dead. See?
344  Every one that refused Jesus is perished. See what I mean? To refuse that simplicity of God… It's just not something… You say, "Well, I made a mistake." You don't do it that way. God don't receive it that way; you perish eternally. We'd better be thinking about something. We best. Now, it's got to be properly identified by God. See? Then if it is, it's His Word. See? Oh. Like those that rejected Moses, rejected Elijah, rejected John, rejected Jesus of their days…
345  Here, let me just tell you a little bitty thing, and then I hope I'm not hurting too much. But, look. The other day I was called to Houston, Texas, to try to get a pardon… I gathered some people together to preach a message to get people there to sign a pardon of—of this young fellow and young girl, you know, that got in that trouble (I guess you've read about it in the paper) and that was Mr. Ayers' step son. Mr. Ayers is the one who had taken the picture of the Angel of the Lord that you see right there: a Roman Catholic, and his wife was Jewish.
347  And he married this Jewish girl; they wouldn't speak religion among one another and so forth like that, and Ted Kipperman, which was also with him in the business had the Douglas Studio. And when he come over there where Mr. Best, Dr. Best, of the Baptist church, holding his fist under Brother Bosworth's nose, and shook it and said, "Now, take my picture doing that." Said, "I'm going to take that old man's hide and hang it on my study room as a memorial of divine healing." And before I went to Houston, Texas, the Lord God told me to go there, and I was there in the Name of the Lord. And you all know the debate and things that come up. You've read it in the books and so forth, and there it was. And that night, trying only to walk humble, "Why," they said, "they're a bunch of ignoramuses." Dr. Best said, "They're nothing but a bunch of ignoramuses." Said, "There's no such people believes in divine healing, stuff like that. That's a bunch of backwash." They don't know that it was God in simplicity. "Why," said, "the man ain't even got a grammar school education." He was polished with all the scholars of degrees that he could, till he thought he could smother Brother Bosworth down anyway, but when it come to the Word, he wasn't even a tenth of a match for him. See?
351  Brother Bosworth knowed where he was standing. Many of his people setting right here was at the debate. And there he was, and then he just throwed off on us every way, as being a bunch of ignoramuses. Said, "Decent thinking people don't even believe it." Brother Bosworth said, "Just a moment." He said, "How many people in this city (of about thirty thousand that night, setting among us like that)… How many people in this city here that goes to these big fine Baptist churches can prove by a doctor's statement they've been healed by the power of God since Brother Branham's been in the city, stand up," and three hundred stood up. Said, "What about that?"
353  There it was. God was hiding in simplicity. Then he said, brother… He said, "Bring forth the divine healer. Let me see him hypnotize somebody; then let me look at them a year from today." And Ted Kip—and Ayers there, the very one who took the picture. Said "Mr. Branham ain't nothing but a hypnotizer. I seen a woman had a goiter on her throat, like that, and said he hypnotized that woman; the next day I talked to her, and she didn't have no goiter." Said, "The man hypnotized her." And, oh, he just ridiculed me, said I ought to be run out of the city, and he ought to be the one to do it (See?), and all like that: big lines in the front page of the Houston Chronicle. I never said a word. I was there to do my Father's business, and that was all: stay with that Word. He sent me there, and it's His business…
356  That night when I walked down there, and I said, "I—I—I'm—I'm no Divine healer. I—I'm not… If anybody says that," I said, "they're wrong." And I said, "I don't want to be called a Divine healer." I said, "If Dr. Best here preaches salvation, well then he wouldn't want to be called a Divine saviour." And I said, "Then I preach Divine healing, and I don't want to be called a Divine healer, but he says he isn't a Divine saviour. Certainly he isn't; neither am I a Divine healer, but 'By His stripes we were healed.' I'm pointing to that." See? And so… "He's nonsense." You know, walked around. I said, "But if the Presence and this gift of God, this Angel of the Lord, if that's in question, that can be proven." And about that time, here she come whirling down on me. Said, "No need of speaking now; He's already spoke for me." And I walked out.
358  I went… And Houston, that big city, one of the nicest cities there is in the country anywhere… When I walked in there the other day, it was a disgrace to look at that city. The streets were dirty. The counters of the place, right down on Texas Avenue, and I went into the Rice Hotel where movie stars used to stay, and went down there in that basement, that cafeteria, and the ceiling's dropping out, plaster on the floor, and filth, and dirt, and a confusion amongst preachers like has never been or ever heard in my life. Why? To refuse Light is to walk in darkness. There sets their children in death row. Right. God came down when simplicity was displayed and rejected, then God showed Himself in simplicity. And there they took that picture which has swept the world. Even the scientists said It's the only supernatural Being was ever photographed in the—all the history of the world, and hangs in Washington, DC in the Hall of Religious Art. See? There it is, simplicity manifested then. See, see? God hiding Himself in simplicity, then manifest Himself. See?