The Way of Holiness
The first six chapters of the Book of Daniel describe certain events which took place during the captivity of Daniel and his companions. The last six chapters are prophecies concerning God's dealings with his people and his city throughout the "times of the Gentiles," under the Seven Trumpet Judgments to the consummation.
Brother Branham explained, "Now, Revelations the first three chapters deals with the Church [of PART-Word saints who required Christ's mediation for their ignorance of the fullness of the Word because the Bible was sealed with Seven Seals]; then the Church disappears [because when the last saint predestinated to Laodicea was born-again redemption was over and all seven Church Ages were fulfilled. Christ's end-time Bride is foreknown as receiving the fullness of the Word through the Message of the seventh angel of Revelation 10:7; as a consequence we were fully redeemed in Christ on Calvary and do not require Christ's mediation]; we see it no more until [the first resurrection in] the end time. From Revelations 1 to 3 is the Church; Revelation 4 to 19 is Israel a nation [but a mixed multitude until the very end when 144,000 elect Israelites are born-again in one day, and then martyred]; and 19 to 22 is both together, and the plagues and the warnings and so forth at the end: set in three parts" (The Revelation of Jesus Christ, p. 13:24).
Chapter 7 gives a general overview of the four successive Gentile world empires that would rule over Israel until Messiah takes the throne of David in the Millennium. (The "Jews" who rule Israel today are themselves Gentiles, generally unrelated to Abraham, Isaac and/or Jacob). The Gentile powers are symbolized by four beasts. The attributes of the first three beasts indicate the nature of their conquering power. The fourth is an unnatural hybrid combining the cruel natures of the previous three, and cannot be reconciled with God's creation.
Daniel 7:4, "The first was like a lion but it had eagle's wings . . . and a man's mind was given to it". Colossal stone lions with the wings of an eagle and the head of a man now displayed in the British and Berlin Museums were uncovered in Babylon and Assyria 150 years ago. The king of beasts and the chief of birds indicate the nobility of the head of Gold on the colossus of Nebuchadnezzar's dream, and the eagle-like swiftness of his armies.
Daniel 7:5, "The second animal looked like a bear with three ribs in its mouth" indicating the "Triple Alliance" between Lydia, Babylon and Egypt, to check the slow but overwhelming strength of the Medo-Persian armies which numbered in the millions, and destroyed them.
Daniel 7:6, "The third beast was like a leopard which had four bird's wings and four heads", a fitting symbol of the swift fierce conquests of Alexander the Great, and the four inferior kingdoms into which his empire was divided after his death.
Daniel 7:7, The fourth beast, unlike any of God's creatures "was dreadful to describe, terribly strong and far more brutal than any of the other animals, having iron teeth, ten horns, and the eyes and mouth of a man speaking presumptuously as if he were God." This was Imperial Rome which became Papal Rome which tore, devoured and crushed the other beasts beneath its feet.
Since his conversation with Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel 2:4), Daniel had written in Aramaic. In chapter 8 he returns to Hebrew to relate visions and prophecies concerning God's future dealings with Israel.
In a vision, God shows Daniel a ram with two horns, succeeding the hegemony of Babylon. The ram is a national symbol of Persia. Its "two horns", one higher than the other, like the "two shoulders of the bear", one higher than the other, equate with the two arms of the silver breast of the colossus of chapter 2 and signify the joint Medo-Persian Empire. Next Daniel sees a He-goat with a great horn between its eyes, crush and succeed Medo-Persia. The national emblem of Macedonia was a goat. God said it signified the "king of Grecia", Alexander the Great. This corresponds to the belly and thighs of brass of the colossus.
Alexander died at the pinnacle of his power and four horns arose, corresponding to the four heads of the third beast of Daniel 7 and the fourfold division of the kingdom among his generals. From among them came a "little horn" (Daniel 8:9) which will be Antiochus Epiphanes of Syria as Daniel 11:21 confirms. He types the "little horn" of the Papacy (Daniel 7:8) that will rise among the ten horns of the fourth beast, Imperial Rome, corresponding to the ten toes of the colossus, and which will withstand Messiah unto the consummation.
Fifteen years later, in 538BC, we find Daniel studying Jeremiah 25 and 29, the earlier prophet who foretold "That after seventy years are accomplished at Babylon, God will allow Israel to return to Jerusalem." They had been in captivity for sixty-eight years and their prophet Daniel is looking to God for instructions as to how he must prepare his people and rebuild his city, Jerusalem.
Daniel 9:20-23, "Even while I was praying and confessing my sin and the sins of my people Israel, and desperately pleading before the Lord my God for his holy mountain, the Man Gabriel whom I had seen in the earlier vision (Daniel 8:16) few swiftly to me about the time of the evening sacrifice (1.00pm). And he said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give you skill and understanding.
At the beginning of your supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to show you; for you are greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision."
This parallels the experience of New Jerusalemthe Gentile Church in lowly exile here pending the redemption of the Church Age saints. We have been sent a prophet in our end-time, the late William Branham, whose ministry was to restore the apostolic faith (Malachi 4:5-6) and finish the mystery of God (Revelation 10:7) to bring Christ's end-time Bride into maturity in the fullness of the Word for the manifestation of the Sons of God and the body change so He can take us Home for the Wedding Supper in the sky.
Near the end of the last or Laodicean Church Age, Brother Branham read the signs of the times. He saw Israel was in the homeland and knew that Jesus would take His Bride Home seven years before that generation could die (Matthew 24:32-34). He saw the world was in a Sodom condition (Luke 17:28-30), and since "the Gospel has been proclaimed among all nations," not all individuals, the churches have become apostate and "neither hot nor cold" with respect to God's Word (Matthew 24:14; II Thessalonians 2:3).
The Prophet observed how through education, entertainments, the UN, more than equal opportunities for women, etc, the spirit of Laodicea, which means "people's rights" or communism, had replaced faith, the understanding of God's unchanging Word as man's standard, producing the "perilous times" Paul foretold for these last days. He saw the people had become narcissistic, loving only themselves and money; proud, boastful, blasphemers, disobedient and ungrateful to their parents, unholy, immoral, constant liars, fierce, despisers of those who are good, traitors, heady, high minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness but denying the revelation of the Word (II Timothy 3:1-5).
These and many additional Scriptural signs were obvious. And like Daniel before him, Brother Branham was in desperation to find the will of the Lord. His commission was to restore the apostolic faith, and finish the mystery of God to call Christ's Bride above the part-Word/part-guesswork of the Church Ages into the rapture. He had to know THUS SAITH THE LORD for the end-time Bride so she might mature into the unity of the faith as Jesus prayed, for the manifestation of the Sons of God, or second wave offering before the translation (John 17:21-23; Ephesians 4:13; Romans 8:19; Leviticus 23:20-21).
God guided Brother Branham through dreams and visions as He had led Daniel; (read Sirs, is This the Time). And as Daniel knew by revelation that he was God's prophet to the Captives, Brother Branham had the revelation of his calling as God's prophet to the Seventh and final Church Age. However that morning in 1933 when he laid the corner stone for his original church building, the Lord spoke to him and said, "This is not your Tabernacle. When you come out of this vision, read II Timothy 4." And He set him under the bright blue sky and said, "Do the work of an EVANGELIST, make full proof of your ministry, for the time will come when they won't endure sound doctrine but shall heap for themselves teachers, having itching ears, and shall be turned from the truth to fables." That came to pass in 1963 when Christ's mediation ended, Revelation 4, 5 and 10:1-7 were fulfilled, and the Angel of the Lord revealed the "mystery of God" to Brother Branham to separate and perfect the Bride.
Christ claimed the Book of Redemption which is the Book of Life containing the names of the "saved" with a section called the Lamb's Book of Life that holds the names God's elected. Opening the Seven Seals He revealed their mystery to His end-time Bride, for without that perfect Word we could never come to perfection since there is now no mediator to bring us into oneness with the Word (I Corinthians 13:10). At best we would be foolish virgin bound for the Tribulation. Malachi, Jesus, Peter and Luke declared this ministry is essential; John also realized this, which is why he wept (Malachi 4:6; Acts 3:23; Revelation 5:1-5; 22:18-19).
The Angel met Daniel "about the time of the evening sacrifice." And it was "about the time of the evening sacrifice" that the Angel came to give Brother Branham "skill and understanding" (Zechariah 14:7; Matthew 24:24).
Paul declared, "By the grace of God I am the prophet-messenger of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the Gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost" (Romans 15:16). Hence, "God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my Gospel" (Romans 2:16). Paul wrote the New Testament.
Paul's ministry delivered the one and only faith (or understanding of God's Word) to the saints (Jude 3; II Corinthians 11:4; Galatians 1:6-9). So Paul's ministry was the "morning sacrifice" by which the elect Gentiles became a fragrant and pleasing offering. That faith became lost. Jesus being Alpha and Omega, the Word at the beginning or Pentecost and the Word at the end, it had to be restored in order for the Holy Spirit to wave the same revelation in Christ's end-time Bride. Paul calls this second wave offering "the manifestation of the Sons of God" (Romans 8:19).
The first sheaf offering represented the Lord Jesus Himself as the firstfruit of the harvest and the lamb without spot or blemish with the ingredients for unleavened bread and a drink offering. He was accepted in that He was raised for our justification and reproduced many-fold in the primitive Church of Pentecost who held the pure faith (Leviticus 23:9-14; John 12:24). Pentecost types the last six days of Israel's feast of Unleavened Bread. As illustrated, the Light of the faith would decline through the first three Church Ages, dim and, like Christ, sleep in the ground through the Dark Ages, then revive through the last three Church Ages, restored in this holy convocation as faith without spot or blemish to be waved in the manifestation of the Sons of God after the close of Laodicea (Malachi 4:5-6; Matthew 17:11; Acts 3:21).
The Day of Pentecost was followed by seven sabbaths, rests or Church Ages, each distinguished by a different baptism of the Spirit from seven Messages of Part-Word (Revelation 2-3). Christ mediated for the ignorance of these saints because pure faith became lost and the Book was sealed.
After all Seven Church Ages were fulfilled, "the faith of Jesus Christ" was restored for a new meat offering of two loaves made from the same fine flour as the first and Royal Sheaf revealing Jesus Christ the same, yesterday, and today, and forever. Our acceptance will vindicate that the apostolic faith delivered by Paul, the prophet-messenger to the Ephesian Age, has been faithfully restored by William Branham, the prophet-messenger to the Laodicean Age.
Although the evening offering is made of identical ingredients to the morning oblation (Zechariah 14:7; Matthew 24:27; Hebrews 13:8), it is baked with leaven into two loaves. The loaves signify the finished product of Christ's Bride, while leaven signifies that the end-time Bride is not yet glorified in the flesh at the time she is "waved" in the manifestation of the Sons of God (Leviticus 23:15-21).
"The husbandman who labors must be first partaker of the fruits" (II Timothy 2:6). And as Christ was the firstfruits in whom the Holy Spirit was waved for the acceptance of the Old Testament saints who slept, Brother Branham was our husbandman in that he was the first mature son in whom the Holy Spirit was waved in the manifestation of the spoken Word of faith or 'third pull' for the acceptance of those who are Christ's at His 'parousia' Coming (I Corinthians 15:20-23).
The additional seven lambs of Leviticus 23:18 signify the revelations of the PART-Word Messages that brought the saints of Seven Church Ages to the birth and together form the fullness (I Corinthians 13:10).
"When Christ opened the Seventh Seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour" (Revelation 8:1); during this interval He revealed the "seven thunders" of Revelation 10 to His prophet (Revelation 1:1) which are the revelations contained in the Seven Seals. The Seventh Seal was the revelation of the previous Six Seals, which brought Christ back to earth in W_O_R_D Form. This was His "parousia" Coming in 1963.
In Revelation 4:5-6, which took place after the close of the Laodicean Church Age and Christ's ministry of mediation, we find the seven portions of the Spirit that anointed the seven Church Age messengers, Paul, Irenaeus, Martin, Columba, Luther, Wesley and Branham, have left the earth. Signified as seven lamps of Fire, they stand before the Throne (or Ark) which is now a Judgment Seat as there is no longer any blood on the Mercy Seat.
In Revelation 8:1-6 we find the sevenfold Spirit of God preparing to return to earth AFTER the evening offering has been received. The fullness of the Holy Spirit that was waved in Christ will be waved or offered in His end-time Bride at the manifestation of the Sons of God. God is now bringing us to maturity under pre-eminence to Christ as Jesus was under pre-eminence to the Father (John 5:19). The Church Age saints cannot be resurrected and glorified until we are ready for the Holy Spirit to be waved in us (Hebrews 11:39-40). The first resurrection and our body change and translation will vindicate God's acceptance of the whole Church. This is made possible by the "abundant incense" of the seven thunders given to the angel offering the evening service (Revelation 8:4).
Once the whole Body of Christ's elect Church is caught up together in the Air for the bema or reward judgment and the Marriage Supper of the Lamb, Satan will be cast down to earth (Revelation 12:7-13). Then God will pour out His wrath in the tribulation plagues while the seven portions of the Spirit return to inspire Israel's two prophets with the revelation of the Seven Trumpet mysteries. It is this revelation that will seal the 144,000 elect Israelites into eternal Life.
This great revelation of Christ's 'parousia' will carry over to those two prophets of Revelation 11 anointed with the Spirit that was upon Moses and Elijah, turning the Gospel back to Israel.
Zechariah 14:5-8, "It shall come to pass that in the day of the earthquake, man's light (or faith) shall be uncertain: it shall be a time of hypocrisy and confusion which shall be known to the Lord, not day, nor night: but it will come to pass, that at the evening time it shall be Light." This is because the faith or Light Paul delivered in the morning is restored in the evening time. The same Light that shone forth from Jerusalem in the morning is restored in the West in the evening for the perfection and offering-up of the end-time Bride (Zechariah 14:7; Matthew 24:27). And later, for the mourning of Atonement when the 144,000 Israelites recognize Christ's 'parousia' to them (Leviticus 16:29; Zechariah 12:10-13:6).
"And it shall be in that day, that Life-giving waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former (Dead) sea (for the 144,000), and half of them toward the hinder (Mediterranean) sea (for us Gentiles): in summer (the Harvest or latter rain for us Gentiles) and in winter" (the Teaching or former rain for Israel).
Brother Branham, the angel to the Seventh Church Age, the only man to whom Jesus revealed these things (Revelation 21:9; 16:17; 22:6-11), takes up this imagery later with a preview of the time when this becomes reality.
In Revelation 22:1-5, "Brother Branham showed John [who throughout the Book of Revelation represents Christ's end-time Bride], a pure river of water of Life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the Throne of God and of the Lamb, coursing down the center of the main street. . ."
In his description, Isaiah 35:8 says, "A highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein" [because God is known in the simplicity of faith which the wise and prudent miss by their wisdom].
Peter was considered "ignorant and unlearned by the high priest, his elders and the Scribes, but they marveled, and perceived what their association with Jesus had accomplished in their lives" (Acts 4:1-14).
A highway is a principal road open to all passengerswhosoever will; the "way" was the raised center cleansed by the waters which wash the filth to either side. Christians are not extremist fanatics of the "Left" or "right", we walk in "The way of holiness" through perfect understanding, and not everyone on the highway will be There (Matthew 7:13-14).
". . . and on either side of the river, was the Tree of Life, [manifested in the twenty-four elders and the saints of Old and New Testaments by the Throne. Daniel 12:5-6 saw this vision at a different stage of its fulfillment]. And they bare twelve varieties of fruits, yielding a fresh crop each month: and the leaves of the tree are for a memorial of the healing or eternal peace of the nations of the non-elect outside the City." And like the Lord's Supper, only the elect such as the kings who live inside the City may partake of it when they tithe the glory and honor of the "saved" subjects.
"And there shall be no more accursed thing (Heb. cherem or Gk. anathema meaning something dedicated to destruction because it is impure and offensive to God's holiness. Earth will no longer bring forth thorns and thistles (Genesis 3:17), the nations of the "saved" will not transgress God's Word (Leviticus 26:14-45; Galatians 3:10) or "rob Him of His tithes" (Malachi 3:9), nor will there be any Serpent's seed (Genesis 4:11; Zechariah 14:11, 21): but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be there (Jehovah Shammah, EmanuelEzekiel 48:35); and His servants (the 144,000 "eunuchs") shall serve Him: and they shall see His face; and His Name (revelation) shall be in their foreheads."
"And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God shall Illumine and give them Light: and they shall reign throughout eternity."
Revelation 1:4-6, "Grace unto you from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the first begotten of the dead, and chief of the kings of the earth. Unto He who loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. . . And we shall reign on the earth".
Where will Jesus Christ, His Bride, the Old Testament saints and "saved" live through Eternity? On this redeemed earth once it is renewed. In the Presence, under the glory of the Shekinah or appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord (Ezekiel 1:28).
We have seen how Brother Branham's ministry was very much like that of John who wrote Revelation and of Daniel who foretold the times of the Gentiles. As his ministry restored the apostolic faith and finished the mystery of God for us Gentiles, showing the end-time Bride her position in the Body and her place in the Kingdom, the ministry of Israel's two prophets will show the 144,000 their position in the Word and their part in the Kingdom. Their powerful ministry will take place during Daniel's Seventieth Week which commences after the translation of the living Bride. bb000607.htm