Hi Angela —
Let me add to what Bob has said above. Here is some
information on Branham.
About William Branham:
The Encyclopedia of American Religions has this information
Branham Tabernacle and Related Assemblies
c/o The William Branham Evangelistic Association
and the Branham Tabernacle
Jeffersonville, IN 47130
The Voice of God Recordings, Inc.,
Jeffersonville, IN 47130
William Marrion Branham (1909-1965) was a Pentecostal
prophet who, as a child, began to hear the voice of one
he claimed to be an angel of the Lord. Healed as a young
man in a Pentecostal Church, he became a preacher and
his success led to the building of a tabernacle in his
home town of Jeffersonville, Indiana. Another angelic
visitation in 1946 launched his evangelical career as
a seer with a healing ministry. He spoke of being called
by God to pray for the sick, and the angel told him that
he had been sent with a gift. He began to travel around
the country leading revival services. He met Gordon Lindsey,
a young Assemblies of God pastor in Oregon, who joined
Branham and in 1948 began The Voice of Healing, to publicize
Branham's work and bring supporters together. As Branham's
tours and fame spread nationally and internationally,
other ministers with a gift for healing associated themselves
with him and The Voice of Healing.
During the 1950s,
Branham led the revival in healing that would project
such people as Oral Robert, Morris Cerullo, and A. A.
Allen into the spotlight as leaders of their own organizations.
Around 1960, Branham became separated from the majority
of the healing evangelists when he allowed divergent
opinions which he had always held but rarely spoken about
to become frequent topics in his sermons. He denounced
denominationalism as the mark of the beast of the Book
of Revelation. He openly denounced Trinitarian doctrine,
which led many to see him as an advocate of Jesus Only,
non-trinitarian theology. Jesus Only Pentecostals believe
that Jesus is the name of the One God, and that Father,
Son, and Holy Spirit are not distinct persons in the
Godhead. They baptize in the name of Jesus. Branham,
while possibly sharing their ideas about the Godhead,
taught that baptism was to be in the name of the "Lord
Jesus Christ." Then in 1963, he began to emphasize
the message of Malachi 4:5, that God had promised to
send his prophet, Elijah. While never identifying himself
as that messenger, he left the door open for his followers,
many of whom came to believe that he was the one spoken
about by Malachi. This issue alienated Branham from many
of his former followers. His attempt to recover his former
widespread support ended when he died in a car accident
two years later.
Those who followed Branham's message, who believed him
to be the one with the spirit of Elijah, began immediately
to preserve and perpetuate his message. Copies of sermon
tapes and transcripts of sermons were reproduced and
circulated by Spoken Word Publications and The Voice
of God Recordings, Inc., both of which were headquartered
a few blocks from the tabernacle in Jeffersonville. Recently Spoken Word merged into The Voice of God, which now houses
the most complete archive of Branham tapes and written
material. The Voice of God regularly sends out copies
of Branham's sermons which it is publishing one-by-one
as a series of pamphlets under the general heading The
Spoken Word. The Voice of God is headed by Joseph Branham.
The Rev. Billy Paul Branham now heads the William Branham
Evangelistic Association and preaches at the tabernacle.
Besides the Branham Tabernacle, there are a number of
independent churches which follow the message initiated
by Branham. There is no association, no bishops or overseers,
only an informal fellowship. Many of these churches regularly
order materials from The Voice of God and offer financial
support of its work. Besides the following in the United
States and Canada, support comes from Australia, New
Zealand, and India.
Membership: Not reported.
More than 100 pastors and churches regularly receive
the materials circulated by Voice of God Recordings,
- The Witness, Box 950, Jeffersonville, IN 47130.
- Only Believe, Believers International, Box 56270,
Tucson, AZ 85703
There are several items on the web about William Branham,
including this overview of his views and errors from the Cult Awareness and Information Centre:
A web search on Yahoo turns up numerous sites, some
favorable, some critical.
Best wishes —