In the Bible, God always brought His Message to the people of the world through the prophet of the age. He spoke to Moses through a burning bush and gave him the commission to lead the Hebrews out of Egypt. The visible Pillar of Fire and other signs were given to vindicate his ministry. John the Baptist brought a Message preparing the world for the coming Messiah. While baptizing the Lord Jesus in the Jordan River, a Voice from Heaven confirmed John’s Ministry, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Years later, the Lord’s Voice was again heard speaking to a prophet when He spoke to Paul through a blinding Light, and later gave him the commission to set the churches in order. Throughout the New and Old Testaments, God has never spoken to His people through a denominational system. He has always spoken to the people through one man: His prophet. And He vindicated these prophets through supernatural signs.
But what about today? Does God still reveal His Word to the prophets? Are there still supernatural signs? Would God send a modern-day prophet into the world? The answer is a most definite, “Yes.”
But how will we know when a prophet arises? What will he look like? How will he act? What sign will he give us? What Scriptures will he fulfill?
The prophets of old were gallant men of God, and were not afraid to stand against the religious organizations of their day. In fact, they were almost always reviled by the clergy. Elijah challenged the religious organizations of his day, asking them if God would respect their offering or his. They shouted. They prophesied. They jumped on top of the altar. They cut themselves with knives. But God did not hear them. Elijah looked up to Heaven and said, “let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word.” He then called fire down from Heaven to consume the offering. Micaiah the prophet withstood the King of Israel and the entire priesthood when he rebuked the High Priest Zedekiah for prophesying a lie. The High Priest struck him in the face and the King imprisoned him for speaking the truth. Even the Lord Jesus was so hated by the religious organizations of His day that they crucified Him alongside the vilest of criminals.
If there was a prophet in this modern day, how would he be accepted by the Catholic Church? The Baptist Church? The Lutheran Church? Any denomination?
The Lord Jesus commissioned all that believe Him: “And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” (Mark 16:17-18). Is this Scripture true today? If it is not true, when did the Words of the Lord expire? Throughout the Bible, the prophets are able to heal the sick, cast out devils, and perform miracles. Moses set the brass serpent before the people of Israel to heal them from the bite of venomous snakes (Numbers 21:9). Naaman, one of the most powerful men in Syria, came to Elisha to be healed of leprosy (II Kings 5:9). When the young man fell to his death from the upper window, the prophet Paul embraced him and brought life back into the dead body (Acts 20:10). We only have record of about three years of our Lord Jesus’ life. During these few years, he continually healed the sick. The blind were made to see. Lepers were healed. The deaf received their hearing. The lame walked. Every manner of disease was healed (Matt 4:23).
The prophets of old were gallant men of God, and were not afraid to stand against the religious organizations of their day.
Even the most guarded secrets of the heart were made known to these men of God. King Nebuchadnezzar had a troubling dream, but he could not remember what it was about. The prophet Daniel told the King both the dream and the prophesy that followed (Dan 2:28). Nothing was hid from Solomon when the Queen of Sheba came before him. He was so filled with the Spirit that he told her the questions of her heart before she asked them (I Kings 10:3). Elisha told the King of Israel all the plans of the King of Syria, even to his words spoken in his bedroom (II Kings 6:12).
Through His own actions, the Lord Jesus showed that this Spirit of discernment is the Spirit of Christ. He discerned Nathanael’s nature when He said, “Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!” And he went on to tell Nathanael where he was when Phillip told him about the Messiah (John 1:49). When he saw that Jesus knew his heart, Nathanael immediately recognized Him as the Christ. The first time Jesus saw Peter, he told him the name of his father, Jona (John 1:42). Peter then forsook all and followed Jesus for the rest of his life. Jesus met the Samaritan woman at the well and told her of her past sins. Her first words were, “Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet” (John 4:18). All three of these people were from different walks of life, yet they immediately recognized Jesus when He showed the gift of discernment. Did this gift disappear when the last page of the Bible was written? If these miracles are so plainly written in the Bible, where are they today? A modern-day prophet would surely be vindicated by miracles.
Has God forgotten His people? Is He still able to heal the sick? Does He still speak to us through his prophets? Did any of the prophets foresee this day? Are there prophesies that have yet to be fulfilled?
THE PROMISE OF A PROPHET IN THE LAST DAYS
The Lord told us in the book of Malachi, “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD.”
The great and dreadful day of the Lord has yet to come, so we should sincerely look for this prophet. If the Bible is true, then this prophet will not come to the mainstream religious organizations. He will come to a select, predestinated few. Imagine if this prophet came, and he was missed. What if he is like the prophets of old, and only a handful of people recognize him? If this prophet is to return in the last day, how will we know him? The answer is plainly seen in the Scriptures. He will have the nature of a prophet. He will know the secrets of the heart. He will perform miracles. The main-stream religious organizations will attempt to discredit him. But there will be a chosen few that recognize him as the promised messenger for the day.
How will we know when Elijah returns? What characteristics will he display, so we can recognize him?
Elijah was a man of the wilderness. Great signs and wonders followed his ministry. He preached against the evils of his day. He especially preached against the immorality of Queen Jezebel. When Elijah was taken up to Heaven in a chariot of fire, his spirit fell upon Elisha. His ministry was then marked by great signs and wonders, and Elisha also preached against the sins of the world. Both prophets stood alone against the religious organizations of that day (I Kings 18:21). Hundreds of years later, the same spirit returned to the earth in John the Baptist. The prophet Malachi predicted that Elijah would return to introduce the Lord: Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me... (Malachi 3:1). John the Baptist was true to form as he called for repentance among the children of God. Like Elijah, he preached against the king and the modern religious organizations. The Lord Jesus confirmed that John the Baptist was the prophet of Malachi 3 in the book of Matthew: “For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.” Matt 11:10
Two thousand years after John the Baptist, it is again time for the spirit of Elijah to return to earth.
That day has come. In this age, we have seen the spirit of Elijah return to earth. He defied the modern denominational system. He stood against the sins of the world. He showed innumerable signs and wonders. He preached the Bible word-for-word from Genesis to Revelation. And by reading this article, you are responsible for knowing that God sent a prophet. The prophet of Malachi 4 has been among us, and he brought a Message from the Throne of the Almighty God. That prophet’s name is William Marrion Branham.
Not since the Lord Jesus Christ walked the earth has a man affected the world in such a profound way. From a humble beginning in a one-room cabin in the hills of Kentucky, to Amarillo Texas where the Lord took him home, his life was continuously marked by supernatural events. At the direction of the Angel of the Lord in 1946, Brother Branham’s Ministry produced a spark that ignited a period of great healing revivals that swept across America and around the world. To this day, he is acknowledged by Christian historians as the “father” and “pacesetter” of the 1950s healing revival that transformed the Pentecostal Church and ultimately gave rise to the Charismatic movement, which today influences nearly every Protestant denomination. However, true to form, the denominations discount his teachings and deny his commission.
Wherever he went, God proved that Brother Branham is the prophet to this generation. Like Job, the Lord talked to him in a whirlwind. Like Moses, the Pillar of Fire was seen leading him. Like Micaiah, he was reviled by the clergy. Like Elijah, he was a man of the wilderness. Like Jeremiah, he was commissioned by an Angel. Like Daniel, he saw visions of the future. Like the Lord Jesus, he knew the secrets of the heart. And like Paul, he healed the sick.
The Lord has again visited His people through a prophet. In the darkest time in history, where morality has sunk to depths never before seen and weapons of mass destruction loom on the horizon, a humble man was sent from the presence of God to call a dying race to repentance. His legacy is not simply in books and tapes. His legacy is in the salvation of millions of souls that accepted Christ because of his Gospel.
The beloved disciple John wrote about the Lord Jesus: And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen. The same can be said about the life of Brother Branham. We have about 1200 taped sermons with thousands of stories about the life of this gallant man. Yet we continuously hear new testimonies of his influence on the lives of millions of people. This article could never scratch the surface of the impact this man of God had on the world.