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Posts Tagged ‘Occult’

Before getting into specifics about William Branham I will give a bit of general background to my own experience.

It seems to me that one of the easiest ways for a Christian to be led away from Bible truth is when their admiration for or interest in a particular preacher, ministry or place becomes their main focus.  Add to that the erroneous belief that a true Christian cannot be deceived and you have the potential for a shipwreck ahead – hopefully not permanent!

I’ve mentioned in previous posts that when my husband and I were very young in the faith, we joined the local Elim church and were taken under the wing of a very nice man, David, who came regularly to our home to teach us from the Bible.

We were enthralled as he related stories to show us that God  was still doing miraculous things , just as He did in the early church, in the ministries of the great healing Evangelists around at that time [late 60s -70s]. He explained that God was restoring the five-fold ministries [Eph 4:11] to the church and fulfilling Joel’s prophecy as on the Day of Pentecost in Acts.

We were not sufficiently knowledgeable in the scriptures ourselves at the time to question, nor did we see the need to challenge anything we were being taught. He was a lovely Christian man, we got on well with him and he knew his Bible inside out [it seemed to us] –  so what could possibly be wrong? It was years later that we learned these were the heretical teachings of the Latter Rain movement. He also was a member of the Full Gospel Business Mens Fellowship who also believe the same.

Well –  the Pastor of our church did not approve and forbade David to meet with us anymore. There was no explanation why , so the inevitable happened and we eventually departed the Elim church and became a small house fellowship. We later met in a small building as our numbers grew.

Then – I think through David – we began to have connections with a church community in Chard, Somerset,  which everyone got very excited about because of the wonderful things that were happening there.

A preacher came from Chard specifically to teach and encourage us all in the gifts of the Spirit. But something he said set the alarm bells ringing. His words were: ” If the [first] voice you hear isn’t the Holy Spirit – then who are you being led by?”  This seemed very unwise counsel to my husband and I – especially as no mention was made of the need for conformity to the scriptures.

Needless to say, things began to happen in the meetings , including being ‘slain’ in the Spirit, as discernment and caution flew out the window in this newfound confidence and freedom.

When we tried to voice our concerns we were faced with anger and the general caution was not to ‘quench the Spirit’ because this was all part of God’s end time outpouring and restoration of signs and wonders to His church.

During our association with David the name of William Branham cropped up regularly. He was much admired and held in almost reverential awe by his followers. We were impressed by the ministry God had given him. We were completely ignorant about him and listened in wonder to the accounts of miraculous healings by this great ‘man of God’.

I am always willing to be objective about people and not to simply accept what may be personal prejudices about anyone , so to that end I read accounts both for and against. I am amazed now at the true picture that emerges from some of those who were close to him and  that William Branham was so accepted [and still is] in pentecostal/charismatic circles without question. There are some enlightening and very interesting videos and articles on line and I’ll put links at the end of this post.

One of the first things I came across was a video by Ed Byskal[?] . It’s titled ‘I Am A Witness’ and begins with a quote from Luke’s opening words to his gospel account. So – you would think it’s a witness to the Lord Jesus Christ wouldn’t you? But NO – it’s his witness to William Branham!

A young looking Ed B. explains that he wants to share his personal experiences so that “you may know with certainty the things of which I am a witness” Luke 1:4   So, the whole video is a defence of and excuses for WB’s many false prophecies and heretical teachings. It seems WB was a humble servant of God with faults and failings, but so exalted and blessed by God with the miraculous, that it made any false teachings and prophecies of no account!  EB , tragically seems to have made it his life’s calling to defend WB – unless of course the selective videos are giving me an unfair picture.

WB had psychic phenomena happening at his birth and throughout his childhood. These included voices, visions and angel visitations, which always frightened him .  This is not surprising when you read that his extremely young parents were not Christians and believed in  fortune telling.

If WB’s followers were/are aware of all this – it doesn’t seem to phase or bother them because they place God’s ‘anointing ‘ above His word. I came across this quote from the FGBMF  ‘Voice’ mag 1961. ‘In Bible days, there were men of God who were Prophets and Seers. But in all the sacred records, none of these had a greater ministry than that of William Branham.

I will end with a concerned appeal to those who think that Christians cannot be deceived – you are in a danger zone if your focus and admiration is on a particular person, ministry or ‘revival’ location  – however spectacular the signs and wonders and however humble and sincere they may be.  Your focus must always be on the Lord Jesus Christ and the Apostle’s teachings as they are revealed in the Bible.  ‘Thy word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path’ Psalm 119:105

And don’t let yourself be put off, if, when you think something is wrong and unscriptural, you are told not to ‘judge’, not to ‘touch God’s anointed’, ‘not everything God does is in the Bible’, ‘you have a critical spirit’, or that Bible believers ‘worship’ the Bible or are legalistic.

These are just fear tactics [probably because they are in fear themselves] to keep you quiet and in bondage to their authority.  Don’t be afraid to follow up your doubts and be a good Bible searching Berean.  Read everything in context and get an overall view of what verses are actually saying and don’t let others do your thinking for you. 2 Tim 2:15 and 2 Tim 3:16,17  seem appropriate here.

NB:

For articles on William Branham I would recommend http://www.Letusreason.org.  If you go to the left side bar on their home page you will be able to scroll down to Latter Rain and click to see them.

A You Tube search will find Ed Byskal’s video titled I Am a Witness. There are several other interesting and informative videos there too.

Another ministry that concerns me is The Healing Rooms  and John G Lake.  Let Us Reason has some excellent articles on him too.

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There are times when I want to write about a matter, but I hardly know where to begin. This is a particular instance where there are all sorts of avenues to explore , but the main one seems to be the role of Catholicism.  A friend alerted me to a Sid Roth broadcast refering to the newly elected Pope.

For those who may not know, Sid Roth has a TV programme called ‘It’s Supernatural’, and this particular broadcast is of an interview with Tom Horn and Cris Putnam. And talk about stuff to ‘tickle the ears’ !  Sid Roth believes these guests  have been ‘hand picked by God’ to research their subject.

They reveal the existence in the Vatican Library of a 900 year old document by St Milachy listing names and prophecies cncerning 112 Popes, which they believe have been fulfilled with stunning accuracy.  Pope Francis is apparently the last Pope on the list  – proving that we are in the Last Days.

He is the Pope of the great tribulation, when there will be great persecution of the Catholic Church. [ this makes the RC Church the victim not the perpetrator!]

My first question is – should a true Bible believing Christian look to outside sources predicting future events – however ‘accurate’ they may appear?  Tom Horn and Cris Putnam certainly think it’s ok to do so. Cris Putnam talks of taking St Malachy’s list seriously because of its accuracy.

I found the whole interview very confused and muddling to listen to at times because it’s difficult to know exactly what they’re endorsing and what they’re not, or even who’s side they’re on.

Much time is spent talking about Vatican belief in Aliens and their technologically advanced Telescopes  set up in Arizona – one in particular called ‘Lucifer’ because of its special infra-red camera eye looking for other worlds.

They quote Vatican Astronomer Guy Cossolmagao as saying the nations are going to look to the Aliens for salvation. Secret Vatican files reveal that Jesus could be the son of a Star Child – an Alien Intelligence. The Virgin birth was an alien abduction scenario and Jesus will return to earth as an alien.

Now, the confusion arises for me because, although TH and CP , I presume, do not believe this themselves , and they do believe UFOs, abductions and the like are demonic … none-the-less they relate supernatural things they have experienced themselves – including seeing UFOs !!

Tom Horn says a lot of Christians are seeing UFOs [ which is very worrying if true] . They are saying Aliens are on earth now and moving in and out of our reality and they include human hybridivity …[ I seem to recall reading some such scenario by Chuck Missler ?]

Apparently these vatican files reveal information coming from these other worlds that will mean a re-writing of the gospel as we know it ….  I find that almost laughable when the Catholic Church doesn’t preach the true gospel anyway !

TH and CP believe this is a huge deception of course, but they seem to believe it is just the RC Church that is to be deceived in these last days ….. oh what a tangled web.

Sid Roth and his guests , confusingly, also seem to have a high regard for Catholicism. CPs education, if I heard right, was by both ‘Catholic and Protestant Reformers’ and Sid Roth adds a seperate little video testifying of his gratitude to Roman Catholic Charismatics. He says , as a new Jewish Christian, he needed ‘mentoring’ and the greatest blessing in his life came from RC Charismatics,  adding ” don’t you try to tell me they weren’t saved – they were as saved as any protestant.  They taught me things of the Spirit that I even teach to this day”    The mind boggles !!

If they were saved, why did they remain within a false system that doesn’t preach the gospel?  it is a betrayal of those ex-catholics who do leave and suffer persecution for it, not to mention those martyrs burned at the stake so long ago.

For an overall view of the history and current aims of the Catholic Church pay a visit to ex-priest Richard Bennett’s web site http://www.bereanbeacon.org and read his article Pope Francis Elected, Mystery of Iniquity Continues.

many blessings,   Eileen

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I have forced myself , against my natural inclinations, to take a look at the Book of Enoch.   Why? Because it keeps cropping up lately and Christian friends and well known Bible teachers such as Chuck Missler, although saying it is not an inspired book, nonetheless treat it as if it were.  And why do they do that ? Because they believe Jesus,Peter and Jude quoted from it – thereby legitimising it. It sometimes sounds to me as if they even regret that the book isn’t included in our Bible.

So, being completely ignorant of the subject , I turned to the Lord and the  internet for help [tongue in cheek].  It also saved me from having to buy this ‘orrible book.

There seems to be a huge debate about when it was written [ I discovered there are 3 books] Supporters of the book believe it is really ancient while non-supporters say, although old, it quotes and elaborates so much on the scriptures it’s probably copying from the Bible [OT] rather than the other way round. I tend to go with the second view on the basis of its rejection by both the Jews and the early church. I understand it was popular among the masses though. For a full break down of the reasonings of both sides , you may like to do a Google search  … it’s full of surprises.

It is not even in the Apocrypha. It is listed as a pseudoepigraphal book  i.e. it has a false author or has been written under a pen name. Most non-supporters believe it was not written by the historic Enoch of the Old Testament. The Book of Enoch is therefore a product of man and not the Holy Spirit  –  how could it be otherwise when it contains so many obvious errors and describes things not revealed [ and forbidden to us] in the Bible?

You can find the actual text of the book  on line to check it out for yourself.  Although I’ve only read bits and pieces of it, it was enough to make me feel ill, it is so diabolical. If ever Satan had his own scriptures – this is it. The fallen angels have centre stage, they are afforded the dignity of being named and a great show is made of their sins – having the notoriety of producing a hybrid human race – Nephilim – and get this – THEY are defiled by human women !

I find it incredible that any Christian would give this occult book the time of day – but it seems they are doing so – led and encouraged by Chuck Missler and the like.

In light of the book’s peculiar teachings about angelic activity [plus Enoch’s astral travels] much seems to ride on the interpretation of the title ‘sons of God’ in the Bible  –  particularly Gen 6:1-4.  The Book of Enoch says they are angels and supporters tie that in with the same term used in Job 1:6 & 2:1.   It is generally accepted that ‘sons of God’ in Job are indeed angels as is obvious, but they are not ‘fallen’ angels else they would not be called ‘sons’ and they are assembled in heaven, presenting themselves before the Lord.  Then Satan appears and it looks to me as though he has insinuated his way into their company because the Lord asks him where he’s come from.

In Gen 6:1-4 however, these sons of God are not identified [ nor are they indentifiable ] as angels. Their behaviour is sinful , so if they were angels at all – they would be of the ‘fallen’ variety and would hardly merit the title’ sons of God’.  The other compelling evidence for them not being angels is Jesus’ own words in Matt 22:30  that the angels do not marry  – borne out by 1 Cor 15:38-40.   spirit angels can no more cross breed with physical women than birds can mate with leopards. Each to His own.

I would point out here that ‘sons of God’ in the new testament is a term used  for redeemed man and not angels. Significant is Romans 8:14 ‘ For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God.’

I am in agreement with those who say that  the sons of God in Gen 6 mean those godly men who began to marry ungodly women -ie believers marrying unbelievers , with the inevitable results. This seems to be the most obvious,sensible understanding of the matter to me.

The result of all the reliance on the Book of Enoch’s fallen angel scenario is that Christians are being given the green light to accept teachings that are not in the Bible. Their trump card is that Jesus, Peter and Jude quoted from it – supposedly- but if you look into it – they do no such thing!  Just because certain words or phrases may appear similar does not make it a quote from a Book of Enoch.  There are many repeated words/phrases from all over the scriptures. No reference is ever made to a Book directly as far as I know…..   Enoch is only ever mentioned as a historic person.  Also even if it were a quote from a book  – that would no more authenticate it as legitimate scripture than if I were to quote from the NWT to a Jehovah’s Witness or the Book of Mormon to a ‘Latter day Saint’.

Jude 14,15  refers to a prophecy by Enoch [not a Book] . How did Jude know of it?  I believe either from Jesus personally  or later by revelation of the Holy Spirit.   And yes –  I would rather believe that than give credence to a book that is full of fantasy.

Referring back to Chuck Missler et al’s teaching on the fallen angels – it seems their production of Nephilim/giants on the earth becomes the reason God had to send the flood and not man’s sinfulness. I found this quote from ‘Alien Encounters’ by Chuck Missler[with Mark Eastman] in one of the articles I read : ‘ Most people, including serious students of the Bible, are unaware of the peculiar circumstances that led to the Flood of Noah. This has been widely misunderstood[and mistaught] for centuries …. this term [perfect – used in Gen6:9 to describe Noah] is used of physical blemishes, suggesting that Noah’s genealogy was not tarnished by this intrusion of the fallen angels ….          and a quote in the same article from L A Marzulli [Christian Author] :  ‘ They[ fallen angels] crossbred with humanity, resulting in the hybrid known as the Nephilim. This was the reason for the Flood ….

And because Jesus said the Last Days would be like the days of Noah, they take that to mean the human race will be [and are being] corrupted in the same way by the same fallen angel activity. This means we won’t  know who is a real human being,  capable of being born again and who is not actually redeemable. Dangerous stuff isn’t it?

Well  – as in any instance where I’m faced with ‘new’ teachings – I ask myself – is this what Jesus and the Apostles taught? To use the Book of Enoch as a kind of authority on angelic activity is to swim in very muddy waters indeed.

What finally makes me so suspicious of this book, apart from its occult nature, is that it so clearly elaborates on and puts the case for a particular ‘interpretation’ of Gen 6. It also, I’m told, takes a pre-trib stance, which seems to up its prestige among those like-minded in the matter.

I hope you can all appreciate the irony that the very Jude who is used most strongly to authenticate the Book of Enoch is the very one who urges us to earnestly contend for the faith once delivered to the saints [us] Jude 1:3

Well – as usual I am very conscious of my many limitations as a Bible student and I know that I can be sincerely wrong. However, since the Holy Spirit has promised to lead us into all truth, I leave it all in His hands.  I hope that I didn’t lose you half-way through tedium, in what may have been a bit of a ramble.

Please click on the ‘Comments’ to have a say or put me right on anything I’ve written in ignorance and I apologise for not specifically identifying article sources that I’ve used.

God bless you,     Eileen

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