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1I understand his operations went down to about one per week, at the very most. And people who were legally blind we're pronounced able to see quite well, and to do many things because he used the approach there, building the whole body up. And that's what we're looking at in this end time here. This message is the greatest body builder the world's ever seen, because from this is going to come immortality.
Now along that line, speaking of immortality and speaking of the Message of this hour, and speaking of divine healing and taking this Message as our healing, you'll notice that we have swung away from the aggressive approach of Mark 16 and James 5:14, to the more specific approach of the Word of God: healing the body…the soul, the spirit, and, of course, the body. And in there, intrinsically healing the mind.
2Now the passive approach, more or less, is the faith that comes from the doctrine, from really knowing the Word of the Lord for this hour, our stand before Almighty God, the present conditions such as the Judge is here, God Himself is here. We see and understand the Melchisedec as not having understood before. And we understand, to a degree, the White Throne Judgement. We understand the fact of souls are now in prison. And these things in themselves are not a matter of an aggressive faith. They're an apprehending faith, which is within the soul and the spirit, comes through the mind, and gives us a rest and an understanding in the things of God, and in our present position in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now on the other hand, there is also to be looked at the aggressive faith, wherein the Bible speaking saying, "My God shall supply all your needs by His riches and glory in Christ Jesus." And again where it says, "Ask anything in My Name and I'll do it. And if you abide in Me, whatsoever you ask, ah…you know, and you believe in your heart, those things will come to pass."
Now, that aggressive faith is running parallel with the passive faith. And what's happening today is a blending of the two faiths, so that there will be more of an inclination. And there should be more of a direction of our faith going more toward the passive, which in turn will take care of the aggressive.
3Now, I hope you understand what I'm saying, because Jesus distinctly said, "If you abide in Me and My words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, it shall be done." And the abiding of the Word, in you and me in that Word, is absolutely revelatory. There's nothing you can do beyond it. And in the revelatory position that you stand, then your great passive faith opens the door to an aggressive faith, which is no longer aggressive as it was once known in Pentecostal circles.
Now, you've got to deal with the Pentecostals. You cannot deal with the Methodists, they've been washed out for years. You cannot deal with going back from Pentecost to Roman Catholicism, from whence we all came out. You cannot deal with that because they weren't aggressive on healing, or hardly anything. They had a little bit of aggressive faith, but there was no aggressive faith there. And you'll notice that all of those people based everything that they had upon what you'd call the passive, or the doctrinal faith, which was strictly credo. It was not revelatory; they didn't have it.
4Now, what I want to show you is this, what I'm driving at: in this hour of the Seventh Seal, time and eternity are blending. See? Now, up through the seven church ages, we had a doctrinal faith, which was a passive faith of the first church age. And had it not been that there were many generations to come in, and sheep to come in and be born again, there could have been a rapture, there could have been a resurrection. But it wasn't time.
Then you'll notice, that the true doctrinal passive faith, which was in the Garden of Eden. See? Now, Eve and Adam took an aggressive faith, which was the aggression of unbelief and disbelief. See, when it came to their living in the garden, it was not aggressive. It was the ordinary out flowing of the life that they had, going about their daily duties. Everything fell into line.
Okay, from the first church age up, the true faith, which is revelatory, began to go by the board, until there was hardly any truth left by the end of the fourth age. Now, under the fifth age, it began to come back a bit. Under the sixth age, it began to come back even more. And under the seventh age, we were looking to a period of the wheat lying in the sun, ripening in the presence of the Lord. That is not aggression. See? That is apprehending; that's being receptive in a passive manner.
Okay. We're coming up now, an understanding from the first church age, where Jesus Christ Himself, in the form of the Holy Ghost, came down, became the cornerstone of the church, and is now coming plum up to headship, which is bringing a people up toward immortality. See?
5Now, all the time you're mortal, you have to have the two faiths side by side. You have a modicum of eternal life, which is simply in you. You have the eternal Life Giver, Who is over it all.
Now, coming up through the church ages, we find then, that mankind is looking forward to putting on immortality. In the meantime, he is in the state of aggression in his faith as he tries to come up and believe God. But there's no way he can believe God for immortality because the hour has not come.
Now, the only time he can believe God for immortality is when God Almighty unites time and eternity. Can't have it otherwise. So, what you're seeing here is the moulding of time and eternity, and passive and aggressive faith. Now, the closer you get to eternity with the absolute of immortality, the more you are going to rely upon the passivity of your faith, because there's nothing you can do but believe. And don't try to do anything else but believe, 'cause you can't.
It is in here that we are going to find the strength from God. Now, when I say, "find the strength from God," I'm telling you as Brother Branham said, so watch my language. I've gotta watch my language. I'll lead you astray there. Brother Branham said, categorically, that, "If God ever sends His power back into the church, it will be by grace and not by obedience."
And that's where we're looking at here tonight. We're looking at the fact that God has sent His power back into the church. And we are looking at that power, which is Christ Himself, in the midst of…and being revealed, so that a resurrection can take place, and we can be healed.
6So what I see here, I see that the passive faith is now overcoming the aggressive faith. And you notice there is now a rest that remaineth with the people. All outside is the false anointed in a frenzy. And they're trying to prove something by their aggressiveness. And they turned down God's aggression, which was God coming into the midst of the Bride, and doing the work. Therefore, they will die while we will live. Now, that's what we stand on. Now, I'm not criticizing anybody. I'm just stating facts as I'm preaching in this pulpit, and try to give you an understanding what is being said here.
So you understand then, what I'm saying. As the eternal and the time begin moving together, it is easily understood that way back yonder - in ages one, two, three, four, five, six, and to the beginning of seven - the eternal was coming slowly from one, two, three, four, five, six; getting brighter, especially from five, six, and seven. In other words, the eternal started to come in under Luther. See? Because the church was now coming up to a spiritual resurrection, and the Word of God was being restored. Reformation was going on. But when the prophet came on the scene, you come to Revelation 10 and 7: "Time shall be no more." It's running out. So, what you're looking at…you're looking at a greater influx of the eternal.
So therefore, it is my understanding, as I see what Brother Branham preached, though James 5:14 is great, we can lay hands on anybody at anytime. We can become aggressive in that department. That is all fine. But the big principle of Hebrews 13:8, overriding, because it includes Mark 16. If you get to Hebrews 13:8, the way God ordained it and Brother Branham taught it, there won't be one feeble one amongst us. There won't be, 'cause that sweet spirit's going to come more and more into the church, until we're all healed.
Now, in the meantime, that does not stop anybody from being ministered to, on the grounds of simply going to God and say, "Lord, we're looking for this thing to be done." You plant your…?…in there of faith. You plant it right there, and stand right there. The elders lay hands on you. You commit yourself and say, "This is it."
7Now, as far as that is concerned, since Hebrews 13:8 is the whole and Mark 16 is only a part of it, what you're merely doing is exercising the part, which you already have within the whole. And as I'm looking at it today, as we begin to view what Brother Branham said, there can be the holistic healing amongst us. And that's what we want above anything else, because if we're not whole in the soul, what good is it if you're gong to get healed in your bodies? You now become a debtor to the principles and the laws of God.
And remember, one of the laws of God is Divine Healing through faith, in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Remember, Brother Branham mentioned that Christ Himself was the Seals, and all the things he said about Him. And brought out the fact of the unveiling of the Lord Jesus Christ: in Him is the resurrection, in Him is the healing, in Him is salvation. Everything is in Him.
So therefore, when you see and understand the Word, and the power of the Word, it should be evident to us that we're walking and we're flowing in a divine flow, which has not been here previously. And as I look at it, the Body of Christ being the Temple of the Holy Ghost. And I see the people understanding these things, piling Word upon Word, which is a conduit wherein the life is, positively. It becomes then light, as the Bride in the west begins to face east, because the light is going back to the east. In fact, the light has gone back to the east. Just as well as. Soon the prophets will appear in Israel over there.
8As it were, from her gates will flow forth that river of water that Jesus spoke of: "he that cometh to Me out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water." But this spake He, the Spirit, which was not yet given because Christ was not yet glorified. But when you begin to see the glorification of Christ to the Gentiles, because He's risen amongst us, and realize the Gentile temple is here today, it appears to me, absolutely, that these rivers will flow forth and become like a tidal effect.
In plain English, what I'm trying to show you is not symbology, but the understanding of the power of God in the church, and through the church. See? In other words, it's like an incarnation. God revealed in human flesh, and God manifested in human flesh. And the healing is here for us because it's now the complete approach; it's now completely body, soul, and spirit.
Now, there never was a time before this age, where man could be completely sanctified unto God, in his body, where he could go into immortality. It's a …?…when a man wants to die. After that the judgment. He said, "The spirit is life, but the body is dead because of sin." But then now, something has taken place, which sets the scripture aside and allows man, in spite of his condition, God super ceding, to go into immortality.
9So I thought I just wanted to show you that, where we're coming, where time and eternity have blended. And time is fading out. As Brother Branham said, "You hold your hand up here, and there's a light there, and your hand's in front of a screen." Now, he said, "You start moving your hand to the screen and," he said, "pretty soon the fingers will fit, absolutely. And the palm and the hand will fit, because the light threw the shadow." But now the shadow is going into reality. You see?
Now, what we've looked at for years is aggressive faith. There comes a time going to all the world and preach the gospel. Forget it. There'll come a time when you won't go to all the world and preach the gospel. Nobody to preach to. And you can't go anyway. There comes a time when everything slows down, or everything falls down. Then, there's one thing that remains: "But Thou, oh God, remainest."
And that's what we're looking at today, is God in the midst of the Bride. And we don't take our eyes off of it. We're trying to see then, time and eternity is mingled. More and more, eternity's coming in. More and more, there's a losing of the aggressive. The only aggressive faith that you and I really have is the faith that knows that God's a good God, a loving God. And that aggressive faith goes before God, and asks God to help us get out of the way so God can have His way. Not try to twist God's arm, but help asking God to twist our arm. See? That's what I look at in these hours here. I don't see anything left for us in the other realm, except a constant slowing down. The slowing down, until it's all over.
10All right, that's enough on that question. I just wanted to bring that up for you, at this time. Now, we went on to the next thought that was a little bit maybe perplexing to some people, because we hadn't gone into enough detail concerning these things. And that was to answer the thought that Brother Branham had said that the pastor was a spiritual husband to the church. And that, of course, was referring to the local church. And otherwise, you get a Nicolaitanism. And it's a statement that many people would take, and they would run with it. And it's a statement that I do not like because - not because of the statement itself, understand that - because, look, there's nothing wrong with anything, it's what you do with it. That's the trouble.
The statement Brother Branham made was a good statement: "The pastor's the spiritual husband of the church." But when you take a statement like that, then you got to look at two factors: you got to understand what the pastor is; you got to understand what the husband is. And then you begin to put them together, so you know if the pastor is the spiritual husband of the church. And if he is, then on what grounds? Well, of course, we know that he is because the prophet said so. But the grounds we begin to deal with.
11And as we looked at the word 'pastor', we found that word in the Bible is actually 'shepherd'. There's really no such thing as the word 'pastor'. It comes from the word 'pastural'. So a pastural condition is just, you know, out there in the fields, and so on. Or the pasture. You might even put it that way, I don't know. But the idea is that he's a shepherd.
Now, we saw in the Book of John, the good shepherd. And that is a very astounding chapter because it lets you know what the attitude of the pastor is. Now, let's just read a bit here because the more we study this, the more you'll have a good idea of exactly what a pastor should be. And you may get very unhappy with me by that time. But you see, I'm not here to excoriate and criticize other ministers, because I know what some of them are doing. And I've seen the effect on people's lives. I lay myself open here, to the challenge of this scripture here to be…I'm not a full fledged pastor. Let's understand that. I'm a teacher. But I can pastor. There's no doubt about that.
But the thing is this: we're looking at, not to literally harm other ministers, but to let you know exactly why I raise my voice about certain things that I don't have any use for, because I see they're not edifying. They're hurting the people.
12Now, beginning at 1st verse (John 10).
(1) Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
Now, that's a fellow trying to get in. So that could be like, you know, anybody.
(2) But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.
So all right, there's a certain element here then, that you're looking at, in contrast to the truth. One is a, evidently, a false shepherd. He's trying to get in amongst the sheep in the wrong way. Now, a true shepherd, then, enters in by the door.
(3) To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.
(4) And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.
Now in there, you'll notice that the sheep don't run around looking for a shepherd. That's why I said, I don't entertain jackrabbits around here. And I'd sooner that, if anybody just visits the church and wants to run around, that he goes some place else and not come here. Now I don't have to call names, but that's just how I feel about it. Because either you're in a position to be pastured and shepherded, or you got to get yourself a, you know, a jackrabbit - some kind of a trainer that takes care of rabbits or goats that run around. See?
13That's another thing I see that I'm never fond of: people moving in to a group, even though sometimes that's gotta be for the sake of the Word, because there's nothing where they're at. So they gotta find somebody. All right, then they come in, they settle down, they can be pastored.
So, we're looking at a picture here of what the church is about if a pastor, the shepherd, is gong to be the spiritual husband and the caretaker of the sheep. Now, you'll notice is:
(4) And when he putteth forth his own, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.
Now, that's a very outstanding quality, or characteristic, within the framework of the shepherd and the sheep attachment, or formula. Now, he knows them by name. He's very familiar with them. He knows a lot about them. And so he should. And you'll notice, when he goes forth, they follow. Now, they don't stay behind kicking up their heels. They follow right along and they listen attentively, because they've got confidence in that person. That's why Brother Branham said, "If you lose confidence, you get yourself somebody else." Then you can move, or do what you want to do. You settle right down there. But there's gotta be a settling down and listening.
Now, they know his voice. In other words, it's not a matter of the sheep recognizing every word that the man's enunciating, but the quality and the tone strikes something within their spirits that they know that what they're being taught is legitimate.
Now, you've heard this statement many times by people that said, "Look, I never understood a word that man was saying, but I know he was real. And I had to just come back and find out."
14There's something about Brother Branham get on that platform, there's no way but you knew that man was real. But that didn't stop a lot of other guys coming around to try to take over. But you see, the sheep knew the voice. And they understood the voice. There was something in that voice. And so they followed.
(5) And a stranger they will not follow, but will flee from him:
Notice what it says about a sheep. A sheep will not have one single solitary thing to do with a person that's bringing a wrong word. Now, you let that sink in. That's why this congregation is constantly put to the test of what you know and what you don't know.
Now, I'll tell you, whether you know anything or not depends on who can come in here and fool you. It's exactly what you're looking at, because that's what the Bible's talking about: those coming in any other way but by the door. And you know the door in this hour is the Message.
How many people come by and say, "Well, Brother Branham was right but…" He said this but. "Well, he was a great man, but," he said, "I've got something too."
15Well, Jesus said a lot of great men were before Him, but compared to Him they didn't have a thing. In fact, they didn't. Whatever they got was from Him, for they were real. Now,
(6) This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them.
(7) Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.
(8) All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.
(9) I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
(10) The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
Now, you notice in here…let's read further.
(11) I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
Now, remember that Jesus is the chief shepherd. And under Him are many shepherds, which are pastors. And that's what you look at. And a pastor is one of the five fold. And you notice in here, that his life must tally with the life of Christ when it comes to the feeding and the leading of the sheep, because the sheep are ruled and fed by the same Word. The word that rules them is the word that feeds them. And if the people are not getting fed, the preacher then's gotta do a lot of ruling. And you'll watch what happens. He'll mess the congregation up every single time. They'll mess up every time.
16That's why organization is right from the pit of hell. And that's where organization can never come back. Never. That's why the church of Rome will never, never, never come back. They can speak in tongues, they can have the most wonderful gifts and manifestation, they will never come back. Why? Because they elect a pope. They elect a hierarchy. And you listen to what they say, then they mix it with gifts and all. It can never come back, because at one time it was a hundred percent Pentecostal church that spoke in real true evident tongues - they're not just saying they don't have it now - and gifts of the Holy Ghost, baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and had nothing to do with paganism. But the state and the church got together under Constantine. And it had power. And you saw its power destroying. And don't think that organized church will not destroy. They'll destroy body, soul, and spirit if they could do it. Only God can do that.
(11) I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
(12) But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.
(13) The hireling fleeth, (and so on)
(14) I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.
(15) As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.
(16) And other sheep I have, (and so on)
You notice in here…and you'll notice at the end of the passage then, there was a vision amongst the Jews for these sayings. And many said, "He's gotta devil." Some said, "He's just crazy. Why do you listen?" Others said, "These are not the words of a man that's got a devil." No.
The devil… you know why? Listen. The ministry of a pastor must be sacrificial, or it is not a true ministry. There's no two ways about it. There's no such thing as love in the scripture outside of a sacrificial love. If it doesn't cost you anything, it isn't of God. Every single thing that anybody has, there is a sacrifice attached to it. Every genuine gift. And when you see people going around with lots of gifts and no sacrifice, you know it's not of God.
17Brother Branham paid lots of sacrifices, on his living and everything else, when he could have been a millionaire. Turned down a million and a half dollars at one crack. And he could have grabbed it and said, "Oh, hey, we'll have a great campaign." He knew that his campaign was God.
See, you're looking at: the shepherd must positively keep himself away from self aggrandizement. And his life must be a life that is intertwined with the life of the people, so that when he moves, they move.
Now, if I'm moving in this Word, or any pastors moving in this Word of Life, then you are moving right with it. See? And it's not a matter of brutalization, it's not a matter of forcing, it's a matter of feeding.
When you've got to feed a sheep, actually plug him with food, you're not dealing with a sheep, you're dealing with a goose. And they take a funnel and they just keep pumping the stuff down the poor, old goose and all he ends up with is a great big liver. No heart, just liver. And that's the way…why, if you did that with Christians, you had to just wham the food down in, you wouldn't end up with any heart. You'd end up with a lot of livers. You wouldn't have anything in a…that's what you'd have, just a bunch of livers. I'm not speaking of livers of people that really live. I'm talking of a…making a little bit of a…what you might call a parable here, a little figure of speech.
18God talks about the heart, not the liver. See? In other words, you don't get a great soul in the people by trying to force anybody into anything. You can't do it. It's a leading into the green pastures beside the still waters, that the shepherd leads the people with the Word, and the pastures of the Word of Almighty God.
All right. Now, we're looking at this thought of the pastor here, which is the shepherd. And we're looking at the fact of the shepherd being the husband. And we saw that in Jesus, being the husband to the Bride. And it's in Ephesians 5. We read:
(23) For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.
Well, what body? The body of the Bride, which is Christ, soul and body and earth. The body according to 1st Corinthians 12: there is many members but one body. And that body is…we're all members of Christ, and so it's called the Earthly Body of Christ, which is many members. Oh say, all right then.
19So, all right. The pastor here, he's going to have many people in his church. Who knows, maybe twenty people, maybe a hundred people, maybe four hundred people. Who knows how many people he's going to have. And he's going to be the one that's the head of the many-membered church. And he is going to be the saviour of the body in the sense that he is responsible to see that this elect lady walks in the light, because he's going to give her the light and help her to have the light. In other words, he is responsible for her safety. Not that he's going to save her soul, or anything like that, although the Word that he gives will have a great impact upon the soul and the light. In other words, he's the head and she's dependent upon him.
(24) Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
Now it tells you right here, that a real true pastor will actually be like a real true husband, because he's going to be the one that absolutely ministers so that she will be well cared for, because he's got her welfare at heart. And she knows it.
And as Brother Branham said, "As the woman, who's the wife of the husband, ministers back to the husband what he provides for her, so then must the pastor provide the good food in its season - the Word of God - so that the church can minister, not back to the minister, but minister to God."
In other words, they'll be worshipping in spirit and in truth. In other words, he's kind of like the conductor of the symphony or the orchestra, to keep the people in harmony with the Word of God and with each other. And you can see yourself, that the great harmony today does not lie in blending our physical characteristics and, we might call, our social characteristics together. It's the blending of our hearts in the Word, is what we try to establish this church on.
20I'm much more interested in you understanding this Word, and getting it in your heart than anything else, because all these other things out there can be duplicated. But you can't duplicate a revelation. You can be the sweetest guy living. You can talk like a saint. You can live like a saint. You can die like a martyr. You can go plum to hell. Yes sir. Because why? You turned down the light.
So, our fellowship does not depend, number one: upon the character and the fruit that people produce. It depends, number one: upon the light. And I'll tell you, that true light has to bring forth a real love and a grace and a graciousness in people's lives. It's simply got to. See? So, we're looking at that holistic approach again on that. Okay.
(25) Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Now, that's an admonition of a pastor who wants to be the spiritual husband of the church. Then he's gotta really give himself for the church. He's gotta sacrifice for it - his energies, his time, and all of these things. Now, notice:
(26) That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Now, that's Christ doing that. But who's doing it for Him? The prophet did it to begin with. Now the pastor's gotta do it. Now, if they really love the church, the pastors are right kind of pastors. They're going to sanctify the church with the washing of water by the Word. See?
21Now, I know that some would say, "Well, all right, that gives me the clue and the key. And I'm going to just take this Word then, and I'm going to be a swashbuckler, and I'm going to use a two-edged sword, and I'm going to…you know, I'm really going to do that with the people."
Now just a minute. You start doing that in your home, where you're going to start browbeating your wife down, and taking every single thing that you know that she has to be in accord with, and you're going to act like a dictator to her, what kind of a home is that going to be?
Brother Branham said…well, let me put it this way. He said, "You're a bunch of legalists."
And I said, "What kind of a home would I have if I was going to go overseas, and I said, 'Now wife, I want you to listen to me. Don't you let any man wink at you, and don't you wink at any man. And don't you fool around while I am gone, 'cause Mrs. Brown, when I get home, I'll divorce you if anything like that's going on.'" Now, I said, "Wouldn't it be great if she took me by the tie and said, 'Listen here, my husband, you listen to me.'"
Well, there's your spiritual husband again, as the pastor. Now, you think that doesn't go on in some of these churches.
Now, before I say anymore words, let me get you to understand this. You say, "Brother Vayle, the way you preach, ain't nobody out there doing anything."
22You don't understand what I'm trying to tell you. This is the end of the world. This is the end of the two vines. This is where Nicolaitan comes in. And Brother Branham categorically stated, absolutely, he said, "The independents are even worse than the organized."
And I've had my stomach full of the independents, especially the Jesus only bunch. I'd sooner take a good, old Trinitarian any day of the week. They're all wrong. There's no such thing as a true oneness doctrine - Jesus only. Never has and never will be. There's no such thing as a Trinitarian. There is one God. And He certainly had a Son. Those things we don't understand perfectly, we understand enough to know the truth though. And at this hour here, what we're looking at, if everything comes to seed - and we are a mixed multitude - you are going to have false shepherds, period.
When Moses left Egypt, he encountered - and you read for yourself - the greatest false prophet the world's ever seen, in Balaam. And his true prophesies are coming to pass right now. They've been going on for over four thousand years. And they'll culminate because God absolutely made that man speak the truth. He tried to get up there, and use his mouth against Israel, and he couldn't even do it.
23Then look at what rose up in the mixed multitude: Korah, Dathan, Abiram. Right there, with God manifesting Himself with the Shekinah Glory, in a pillar in a cloud. And they said, "Moses isn't the only one, bless God. We gotta right to talk too." And they got burned up for their fallacy.
And you know something. I'll tell you something brother/sister. I don't care if God came down in this room right here. If we are a mixed multitude…now let's get this flat. I'm sorry we're not on tape, but it's the truth, and I'll stand if we're on tape or not, or say it again. Let God come in here in a Pillar of Fire, where every one of us can see It. If we are not elect, it's just a matter of condemnation. And we'll find a way to go back and be worse than ever, because that's exactly how it works.
If you think for one minute, that we don't have amongst us in the so-called message - which it is - people that will pull every trick in the Bible and out of the Bible. In other words, what you've seen done in the Bible and out of the Bible. They'll say everything to take people in their custody, split up homes, as I've seen it, everything else. That's where I'm so strong. As I say, they come near me, I'll throw them out. If I can't I'll have the biggest man in this church throw him out. If he ain't got the guts, I'll hire a goon to do it. I've had my stomach full of it. I could name names right now. You bet your sweet life I could. I'm not the least interested.
24And it's going to narrow down more and more. There were eight souls that got in the ark. There were three that made it out of Sodom. And if you think there's going to be vast numbers standing here to be glorified and get out of here immortal, you have a wrong thinking, my brother/my sister. It's a narrow, narrow walk. A very narrow walk.
Okay. We look at the fact here that the pastor then, is responsible. For Paul said, "I want to present you as the chaste virgin." Any pastor that falls short of that, he's a mess. He ain't no pastor at all. He wants a chaste virgin. And it's by the washing of water by the Word. The constant lapping of the Word, like water, will wear away a stone. It'll wear away your wrong thinking. It'll erode your former, previous understanding.
That's why I say I've got the best results, always, with a Catholic or somebody that never had a background. That is scriptural. They've had their background, yes. When it came to the things we talk about, they haven't got a clue. They wouldn't recognize what we speak of here - let's face it - anymore than I described an animal that had never been seen by anybody in the world before that could exist. Or go into Africa four hundred years ago, and talk about an airplane or a television set. They don't have it.
25Once they begin to believe, why they can see everything. That's the washing of water. That's the water that begins to water what's in there, the seed and all. But if you gotta have water that begins to wash away and erode all the muck and the junk in there.
And remember, listen, there's nothing as strong as water. Nothing in the world I know of. You get a big dam up here, and let that dam break loose, and that water come down…phhhhh, man, nothing will stand before it. You get water under pressure, why it'll take the paint off of your car if it isn't on there really right. You bet it'll take the skin off you too.
Sometimes the Word of God is that way. It's gotta get you right down. See, some of the water of the Word washes, and gets all that muck out of the way. Then the other water that's there feeds the plant within you, the life within you. Makes you kind and sweet and mellow. Brings you up in Christ, because the pastor has a job. And his job, the best he can do is to present a Bride that's holy - without blame, without blemish, without spot, without wrinkle.
26You say, "Well, I think God's going to do that." Well, how does God do things? He's got a way of doing things. See, look it. You got…listen, I'm going to tell you something. You sitting here, you've got a lot to receive and expect from God. And you can. And I've got a lot to give and expect too. And I am. Why do you think I preach this way? You think I'm going to get it out of here in four canes and my hands and knees? I don't expect that. I'd be out of here snorting and standing up right, waiting for the flaming chariots. Now, it doesn't sound like that way sometimes. But down deep in my heart, that's there because that's where the promise is.
What God will do, I don't know what He's going to do. Neither do you. You accept what's here, somebody's going to get something brother/sister, if you sit here with your faith. That's why you come to church every single time, ready to know, ready to hear, ready to understand. And so you should. And if you don't, stay home. I don't need you. Oh, come on along anyway. It's all right. We're nice people.
(27) He might present himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing.
You know, people get a little alarmed at times when I talk to them. "We got the best church in the North."
"Wouldn't that offend some other preacher?"
"Well," I say, "if he doesn't say the same thing, he must be nuts." And I'll make some comparisons. I'll say, "You go to that church. How do they talk about money?"
27Listen, I'll never mind. I believe there's a gift operating here, brother/sister. And it's the will of Almighty God. I don't believe I'm here for nothing. Not for five minutes will I believe that. Or I'd get out of here. Sure.
(27) …glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing;…holy and without blemish.
(28) So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
All right. Can the preachers say that they love the church as much as they love themselves? Well, some can, some can't. Now you watch it, and you know what's going on. Now:
(30) For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
(31) For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother.
Okay. We're looking here at the fact of the husband, now, the shepherd being the husband. And we see the type there. And with it, we might as well go to Isaiah 54:5.
(5) For thy Maker is thine husband; The Lord of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; the God of the whole earth shall he be called.
28Now, when you talk about the pastor then, being the spiritual husband of the church, local, you are working with what we call the trickle down economy of God. Right. See?
As William Branham was the true vicar of Christ, in human flesh standing here, God Himself using him just as His mouthpiece and his temple to work through, because God was manifested in and through him - God in the prophets. The next thing is: he has a fivefold ministry of which there is a pastor.
Now, the pastor is the leader and the shepherd. And he, in the trickle down - minimal, just as a type, just as an example - he's the vicar to the people. He stands there for Christ, for you. But that's all. It's just a figure of speech, except for maybe a ten percent. You know what I mean. He's got to do something. What would Christ do? See? Well, he's gotta act in that capacity to help you.
All right. Then you in your turn, are Christ to somebody else, as the witness. Because remember, Christ is the witness. There's nobody, you know, that's not in the trickle down economy of God. Everyone has his place there. So, all right. The pastor then, will admit that he's got the place of a husband.
29All right. Let's look at the Word of God, in the sense of a husband and wife relationship, in 1st Corinthians, chapter 7. Now, I know what we can do with this, but we'll talk about it and do something with it.
(1) Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.
(2) Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.
All right, we're looking at a thing here, then. Let's just talk about this being the church and the preacher. He better have his own congregation, and the congregation have her own pastor. Otherwise you're going to have problems. He said the church cannot have respect for interference anymore than a pastor can take it.
So it says, in order to avoid fornication, in order to keep from getting messed up spiritually, you listen to one person. And if you don't like what he says, and you can't get along, get yourself another one. Now, that's plain English. Because it says right here: "avoid fornication." Go out there and run from this church, that church, every other church, settle down. Now, I'm using this, Brother Branham said, as the pastor as spiritual husband. So I'm going right through it. What I can find out for you.
(3) Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.
30Now that, of course, is a sexual situation. What's a sexual situation? Impartation of life. The pastor has one thing in mind: impart life to his congregation. And the congregation accept it. Say, "Hey, I can grow by that. That's helping. I want that life." Why? Because we're going to bring forth spiritual children or bring forth, literally, within ourselves, feeding the Word an infant life into a mature life. Now,
(4) The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.
Now that again is a sexual situation. That again is cohabitation. But then again, there's the picture. He's not going to come in here and force himself on the people. And the people cannot force themselves on a preacher.
Brother Branham said, "Pastor be subject to the church, and the church subject to the pastor."
You can see in here, there is a way that agreements can be worked out between the church and the pastor, even as they're worked out between husband and wife, even though the husband and the pastor are the heads.
31Okay, let's keep reading.
(5) Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.
That again is a sexual situation.
Now, it tells you right there, if we're looking at these things in the spiritual sense, don't let the preacher ever, at any time, stand back and rest. In other words, take the pressure off of dealing out the meat and the food. But just keep moving in and moving into the Word of God, unless you say, "Okay, let's just move back a bit now, go over what we learned. Let's relax a while here. Let's do a little bit of praying and fasting, or something a little lighter as it were, because we're getting overfed."
I've often said to people, "I'm not a good pastor because one thing, I just keep hammering and hammering. And pretty soon you'd be plum up to here, and coming out your nose." What good's it going to do? You've got enough to go home and think about it for two weeks already, within this one message tonight.
That's why we have tapes. At least we always have had tapes. I don't know what happened tonight, but that's up to God. I've got nothing to do with that. None of us had anything to do with it. That's just something the Lord must have allowed.
(6) But I speak this by permission, and not of commandment.
In other words, he's going into this on the grounds that he's telling you things that are good for you, but it's something that can be worked out with each other.
(7) For I would that all men were even as I am (Paul was a bachelor). But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that.
(8) I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I.
(9) But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.
(10) And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband:
33Now, when is the church going to leave the husband? When's the husband going to leave the church? Well, if either one gets dissatisfied. If the church feels it's not getting it's value, they got the right to get another pastor. Some do work out by agreement.
(12) But to the rest speak I, not the Lord: If any brother hath a wife that believeth not, and she be pleased to dwell with him, let him not put her away.
All right, now here's people coming in. And naturally, Brother Branham said, there's three kinds of believers.
Now, the preacher doesn't wanna run out of the church. People who don't believe, let them sit there. Don't make an issue. If a man said, "I don't believe that Brother Branham's a prophet," say, "Well, maybe if you stick around long enough, you might. And in the meantime, if you don't believe he is, the more we preach, maybe the more confirmed you'll be in what you don't believe with us. So, that'll make you happy, so sit around. Enjoy yourself."
We are not closed communicates. We don't close our doors. But when we do move yonder, and people get kind of curious to see what the nice new church looks like and what the preacher preaches like, they're not going to be too happy listening to me. 'Cause I will not preach to accommodate anybody. Nope. No way, shape, and form.
I find this, as far as I'm concerned, that if I preach the Word of God, I find people come along and they get a wonderful experience, salvation of the Lord Jesus Christ, they just go right up.
See, we're not trying to do what the world used to do, and the church world did. That not going to help people. It's this Word today that's going to help people. Not something else.
34Okay. So the church allows them to come in and see what happens to them.
(13) And the woman which hath an husband that believeth not, and if he be pleased to dwell with her, let her not leave him.
All right, now this way, you can say right here, "Okay, I don't really believe what the preacher's saying. I can't understand it, but it seems like a pretty nice crowd there, so what I'll do, I'll just more or less stick around with them and be, you know, part of them."
So, what we're trying to say here from what we see in the scripture concerning pastor and church, you're going to have, without a doubt, problems arising. Those who believe and those who don't believe.
As Brother Branham said, "Satan may send someone amongst you." A rank unbeliever, that would be, trying to stir up trouble. And he said, "Maybe just get along real nice for a while, then begin shooting…Satan shoots him full of poison, and he tries then to destroy people." He said, "Just treat them with real love and kindness, and stick together." See? The people don't do anything but just stick together. And just say, "Well, understand, understand." And he'll either come in or go out. So, we're looking at that here.
35Now, now it says here:
(14) For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now they are holy.
Okay, you can have a situation here, where the people are maybe a lot of unbelievers. But you know something, those few believers that stick together with the pastor, the children that are born to them spiritually, they'll come up in the message. And who knows but what the children sitting here, what the parents turned down. The children won't come in. So what you see, we're looking at a spiritual aspect here. Now,
(15) But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart.
See, you don't have to worry about it. God's called you to peace, not bondage. Because we don't know who's going to be saved, and who's going to stay with the message, or who isn't.
Now, we see splits. We see people get mad. I know, I got some people very mad at me. What for, I don't know. Never did a thing but treat them good. But they can't stand this Word. I let them go. Don't be nasty; don't be mean. If they want to come back, fine. But you know our stand here, and that is this: the only reason you leave here is because…not because you didn't get treated right. You get treated right in this church. You didn't believe. Now you gotta come back with your ignorance and your unbelief, and confess that you are wrong, because that's part of what's gotta be done. See?
36Now, we don't know what's going to happen. We just keep moving down the road.
(17) But as God hath distributed to every man, as the Lord hath called every one, so let him walk. And so ordain I in all churches.
Now, he tells you right here, see? So, all right, we don't have to go beyond that. I don't think we do. Well, let's read further. It won't hurt us.
(18) Is any man called being circumcised? let him not become uncircumcised. Is any called in uncircumcision? let him not be circumcised. (Now, this is where people get into legal things.)
(19) Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God.
(20) Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called.
(21) Art thou called being a servant? care not for it (don't worry about it): but if thou mayest be made free (In other words, these were slaves. If you ever get free, go ahead and become free.)
(22) For he that is called in the Lord, being a servant, is the Lord's freeman: likewise also he that is called, being free, is Christ's servant. (In other words, you see right there, there's no big ones, there's no little ones, everybody's on the same bargaining counter because:)
(23) Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men.
So, right on down the line…we could read more but I don't think we need to. The thought here was that in a marriage, the man is the head of the house. He makes the major decisions. It doesn't mean for one thing that his wife isn't called in on the things that are worked out together.
And so it is with the church. The pastor is the head. He's got to know what he's talking about. He's got to be the leader in the spiritual things. If he doesn't understand some things, the point of the matter is that they simply gotta work together as a church, until an answer comes and something comes to fruition. So I would say that the pastor, the right kind of pastor, is certainly the spiritual husband of the church.
37Now, this business of working out things in a mutual agreement, I find in the book of Numbers, the 30th chapter and verses 1 to 16.
(1) And Moses spake unto the heads of the tribes concerning the children of Israel, saying, This is the thing which the Lord hath commanded.
(2) If a man vow a vow unto the Lord, or swear an oath to bind his soul with a bond; he shall not break his word, he shall do according to all that proceedeth out of his mouth.
(3) If a woman also vow a vow unto the Lord, and bind herself by a bond, being in her father's house in her youth;
(4) And her father hear her vow, and her bond wherewith she hath bound her soul, and her father shall hold his peace at her: then all her vows shall stand, and every bond wherewith she hath bound her soul shall stand.
(5) But if her father disallow her in the day that he heareth; not any of her vows, or of her bonds wherewith she hath bound her soul, shall stand: and the Lord shall forgive her,
See, a false vow is forgiven. You never have to carry it through.
38Now I'll say, I heard Dr. Magee speak on that and he's all wrong. He said, "If you ever vow," he said, "you better follow that vow through." That's not true. The man doesn't know the Bible. He just thinks he does. So much for your PhD's and DD's. See, you gotta watch it. If there's a false vow, brother/sister.
(6) And if she had at all an husband…(now watch)…And if she had at all an husband, when she vowed, or uttered ought out of her lips, wherewith she bound her soul;
(7) And her husband heard it, and held his peace at her in the day that he heard it: then her vows shall stand, and her bonds wherewith she bound her soul shall stand.
(8) But if her husband disallowed her on the day that he heard it; then he shall make her vow which she vowed, and that which she uttered with her lips, wherewith she bound her soul, of none effect: and the Lord shall forgive her.
(9) And every vow of a widow, and of her that is divorced, wherewith they have bound their souls, shall stand against her. (See, it's got no head)
(10) And if she vowed in her husband's house, or bound her soul by a bond with an oath; (that's before they got divorced or he died)
(11) And her husband heard it, and held his peace at her, and disallowed her not: then all her vows shall stand, and every bond wherewith she bound her soul shall stand. (That's divorced or widow)
(12) But if her husband hath utterly made them void on the day he heard them; then whatsoever proceeded out of her lips concerning her vows, or concerning the bond of her soul, shall not stand: her husband hath made them void; and the Lord shall forgive her.
39Now, so on down the line. You can read this concerning the status of a husband and the church. So therefore, the church, as Brother Branham said, all board meetings and every meeting, the pastor should be there, unless, of course, he desires not to be there, and something is set in order by the church. If it is not in total agreement from the pulpit down, there is nothing in the church that is binding.
Now, of course, somebody could take this attitude, being a pastor, and say, "Well, I don't agree with it." And the people are right and not the pastor.
Now, what I'm saying is this: the preacher may have something up his sleeve, an axe to grind, or something he wants done. And the people don't want it done. And the people are right. Then, you see, what you're doing is going by the Word of God.
40But this message tonight is calculated to show you that there is such a thing as a pastor being a true spiritual husband, and working with the church as a true spiritual wife, and working together with the Word of God, to see that what they say is correct one with the other. And they all move forward to do it. But if the church would ever make a move outside of the pastor and the pastor would come back, he has every right to annul it, because it was not done with him so there can be a smooth and running approval. It is not that the preacher has a right to come in, and just disannul everything you've got - that's not the idea - and to put it to one side.
The idea is this: it must be with the merging of the minds. That's how the pastor, as spiritual husband, is still subject to the church; and the church is subject to him, and yet is able to have a part in a government.
So I hope you understand what we're saying here, because you'd be surprised how despotic some people can be. There's got to be the thing worked out in the name of the Lord, see, and the Word of God.
Now, the pastor, if indeed he's a spiritual husband in the church, I'd say that pastor, with the church, can have a truly responsible and caring relationship. Like princes. Pardon me.
41Let's find a couple verses scripture. Psalms. Proverbs. Right here, the little book of Proverbs, and I've got written down here the 12th chapter. And I got written down the 4th verse.
(4) A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.
That sure fits the church. How many churches I've seen with fine godly men, just fine humble people, and the church try to run him right out of existence, never listen to the fellow. Something comes up, they're meaner than a snake.
You remember years ago - this is really funny, this happened - this guy was in a church, and he was preaching tithing. And the one fellow said, "Bless God," he said, "I don't believe in tithing." He said, "I believe," he said, "The Lord pays the preacher, and his rewards is souls."
And the guy said, "Yeah," he said, "I don't." He said, "And I'll tell you what." He said, "If I ate souls, it would take twenty like yours to butter a slice of bread."
Yeah, he paid the man in souls. And he said, "I don't eat souls."
So, okay. So, we're going to look at Proverbs, chapter 31, now. And we're going to read the 11th verse. This is about this lovely woman. And he said,
(11) The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
42That's nice. Verse 28.
(28) Her children shall rise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
Now, as we look at this picture here, you can see that Brother Branham was very, very right in saying that the pastor is the spiritual husband. And you can see the relationship here, can be a beautiful relationship of the church and the pastor. It should be, really, a love affair, as in the Songs of Solomon, which we won't go into at this time. But you can read the 2nd chapter yourself sometime.
Now also, there is a promise that we can take for this hour, for us, in Jeremiah, chapter 31. Because this is like last hour of the Exodus, and we want to just read some thing about ourselves. I think we can anyway, use these verses. And they're 31 to 33.
(31) Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:
(32) Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord:
43Now, the Exodus, he was the husband. Now the husband, of course, in this particular sense, was the provider because he gave them food, clothing, and shelter. He warmed them by night. He cooled them off by day. He kept them from the enemies. Their shoes did not wear out. Their bodies did not accumulate odour. Their clothes did not wear out. They were taken care of day and night. And he gave them the Word of Almighty God, and brought them into the Promised Land.
(33) But this shall be the covenant that I make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.
All right, what you'll notice here, what God is doing as the husband of the Bride, He is giving them, he is inculcating in them, a good spirit; putting the law in their inward parts, writing it on their hearts, to make sure they are His people. And they shall continue so. And that's what a good pastor will do, more than anything else in the world.
44Now, I now realize that we are trying to get this church to a place, eventually, where you'll have lots of visitation and lots of fellowship. But remember, that is the minor part of it all. If you had to take your choice, I would hope that you would say, "I would sooner have no visitation and no fellowship, but I would sooner have the Word. And as I get my visitation, and work these things out, then we'll work them out. But this is what counts: the presence of God and the Word, filling our hearts and minds and lives."
And this is why there's so much Word in the pulpit here. And by the grace of God, we'll continue to do so.
Now, coming into the Millennium, like we read here - Exodus - I feel, as we are coming in, that Ephesians 1:17 to 23, which is God in our midst and the revelation; the Name in our midst, the power of that name. We having the Name makes Mrs. Jesus, the Bride, and so on, getting ready for the resurrection and the rapture, is bringing a fivefold ministry into a definitive, beautiful, powerful ministry that's going to perfect a Bride.
45Let's look at that. Ephesians the 4th chapter. We've looked at it many, many times. We stand on this strong scripture.
All right. He's talking here, and He says, when he came back as the Holy Ghost, on the day of Pentecost…appeared to Paul later. Now to Brother Branham.
(11) he gave apostles, and prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers (fivefold ministry. To do what?)
(12) …perfect the saints, for the work of the ministry, (to build up) the body of Christ: (and watch it)
(13) Till we all come in the unity of the faith (now, that's that great passive faith we're talking of), and of the knowledge of the Son of God (that's a part of it), unto a perfect man (that's a fullness of the Bride of the Lord Jesus Christ), unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ (Christ pouring all of His Word into the Bride. There's not one Word missing):
(14) (So we now are) no more children (we're adults), tossed to and fro (we're not tiny children anymore, nor are we) carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
(15) But speaking the truth in love, may grow up unto him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
(16) From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
You're looking at that picture then, that we can see here, that the apostle Paul brought us. We're looking to perfection, and it's going to come by the Word ministry.
46The devotion of a true pastor is isolated to one church wife. If we use 1st Timothy 3 and 2, the bishop, he is the husband of one wife. In other words, he won't try to pastor a lot of churches running around.
I remember, I had a guy one time phone me up and tell me he wanted to pastor a group in Erie, and at the same time pastor a group in Chicago. I said, "How are you going to do it?" I said, "There's no way I'd persuade the people to do that. But," I said, "If you want me to ask them." They turned it down flat.
Pastors stay with the flock. A good pastor stays home and really watches his p's and q's, and takes care of the flock of God, because that's what he's supposed to do. And according to Matthew 24:37, that we read last week on Sunday, you know there that the faithful shepherd is going to feed the sheep the food in due season. And the food in due season is the Message of the end time.
47Now, I know there's a lot of problems today, by people desiring a whole lot more of the pastoral subjects, which are good. But you know, when the Bible tells us that the heathen do, by nature, the things that Israel was supposed to do, by divine revelation where does that place a congregation today? We ought to know where we stand, and what we do is right or wrong, brother/sister. And that's good.
But remember, it's the revelation of the mystery at the end time, Christ in the Seals, that's going to do the thing we're talking about. And you know something? I don't think we spend enough time on it. I don't think we really get into a lot of the meat and the heart of the true revelation of our great God and Saviour. We're telling many things pertaining to it. And that's good, because it's all part of it. But there's many more things we can tell pertaining to that Word, which will bring out the intrinsic glories and beauties of the Lord Jesus Christ. I think there's so much, much more to have. And there's so much more that we can also inculcate into our own souls, concerning our own relationships to Him, to begin to see that.
In other words, we're right back to what I said the last few weeks. The holistic approach is what we're looking at to see this.
Now, brother/sister, that's as far as I'm going to go tonight, because the next step we'd wanna go on to where the pastor's ordained to see you through. And I think we've pretty well covered enough for tonight.
48But you can see, at least I feel myself that we're in a position to see and understand when Brother Branham made that statement - that the pastor's the spiritual husband of the church - that we're putting it in a right perspective, to understand it is thoroughly a scriptural thesis. But we must go by way of what the scripture said.
And you know what, there's nothing more wonderful in all the world than a husband and wife relationship. If there'd been anything more wonderful, for the image of God, He would have done that instead of what He did. And you consider what He's done by redemption, is to bring the husband and wife relationship to a perfection, which is concerning Himself and the Bride.
You bring that down to your own homes, then bring it up to the pulpit in the church, and you can - as I see - you can see where Brother Branham had a very legitimate reason, a tremendous statement, when he said that the pastor is a spiritual husband. But remember, he also said, "Pastor be subject to the people, and the people subject to the pastor."
49In other words, it must be a truly related, caring marriage where neither one is neglected, but both moving on in the Headship of Christ, coming to a union which…let's face it, according to Brother Branham, I don't know any age can achieve what we're about to achieve. See, what a great hope we have to know that it's possible. Each one sitting here has got to claim for himself, and herself, that great privilege that lies ahead of us now.
So let's come together more and more, in the spirit of love and Christ, and realize what the prophet said. And not that we can make it work, but listen, we are here to let it work in us. You know, that's what a vessel's all about. The vessel of honour…why the vessel didn't know it was going to have the madam's necklaces or diamonds and pearls in there. And the other vessel didn't know it was going to be a spittoon. It's all it was.
Now, that's what it is tonight. He's a vessel. He is here to let the Master put in it. See? That's it.
Lord bless you. Let's rise and be dismissed. Sunday morning, 10:30 again.
50Gracious Heavenly Father, again we want to thank You and praise You for Your kindness to us, Lord. And we pray, Lord God in Heaven, that as we go tonight that this Message, singularly for the people here tonight, Lord. Others will not get it. Nope. There's no way their getting it now. But the people were here that did get it, Lord. Let it be in these vessels.
And let there be something happen to every heart here, my heart, Lord. I'm crying for myself. If I gotta stand here as a sort of a pastor, which I am, doing the job right now, that I would be the man that you want me to be, Lord, as a spiritual husband and the provider. And that one, Lord God, that makes a provision, does things right for the people. And they in turn, Lord, reciprocating. And we all, under the Headship of the Word of Almighty God, just loving each other and coming together; being one virtuous, beautiful mind in Christ. Not that we understand every single thing, or understand. But Lord, we know that we're trying. And You know, Father. And we believe His vessel, as we stand here tonight, for You to just pour It in us, oh God; trusting and believing we're vessels unto honour, unto You, oh God.
So Lord, may we walk in the Light now, and bring forth fruit meat, that shows that we have really received a Message of the wonderment and love and the revelation of God.
Now, unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be all power and honour and glory, through Jesus Christ our Saviour. Amen.
The Lord bless you. Take the name of Jesus with you.