His life, from birth, had been unusual - the Pillar of Fire appeared over him at the time of his birth; A Voice spoke to him out of a tree when he was seven years old; At the age of seven he saw a vision which was fullfilled 22 years later; In 1933, when baptising converts in the Ohio River the Pillar of Fire appeared over him again and announcing that he was commissioned to forerun the Second Coming of Jesus Christ; NOW, God takes the ministry of Brother Branham a step further - This time an Angel would be sent from the very Presence of God with a third commission and to explain to him about his "peculiar ministry" and "misunderstood ways".
The remarkable angelic visit received by Brother Branham caused no little wonder among many of the people of God as well as the un-saved. As it was in the days of our Lord Jesus, so is it today, some believe and some don't believe. As it is written... "...As many as were ordained to Eternal Life believed." But the overwhelming majority of the people who attend the Branham meetings were fully convinced of the reality of the angelic visitation.
It so happens that God has chosen diverse and sometimes very mysterious ways in which to reveal Himself to His servants, especially those called for some important despensational purposes. To Moses, the deliverer of Israel, He appeared in the Burning Bush. To the children of Israel He was found in the Pillar of Fire by night and the Cloud by day. Samuel heard Him as a Voice calling in the night. To Elijah He was the Still Small Voice. To Abraham He appeared in the Theophany manifested in human form, and Paul saw Him in His resurrection glory - the Pillar of Fire, a blinding Light as also did John, the Beloved.
Perhaps, however, the most common supernatural visitations in Biblical times was by an angelic visitor. Thus Angels appeared to Abraham, to Moses, to Joshua, to Gideon, to David, to the Prophets, to Zechariah, to Mary, to the Shepherds, to the Apostles, and others. In most cases supernatural visitations were not mere visions, but were an actual appearing of an Angelic being. Thus the story of the Angel's appearance to William Branham is not without full Bible precedent.
Indeed the truth of Angelic ministration to mortals is quite in line with the Word of God. It has been recognized generally that as a result of the Pentecostal Revival (early 1900's), the gifts of the Spirit have been restored back to the church. But, what about the ministry of Angels? The Bible says in Hebrews 1:14: "Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?"
In Psa. 34:7 it is written... "The angel of the Lord encampeth round them that fear Him, and delivereth them." Again in Hebrews 1:14 we read concerning Angels: "Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of Salvation."
We could cite the great number of Scriptures which deal with the earthly ministry of angels, but that is not necessary. The Bible says, "Out of the mouth of two or three witnesses let a thing be established;" and we have already given numerous references. The fact is that practically all Bible teachers believe and teach the actuality of such a ministry.
Why then are not angels seen more often? According to our Scripture references, Angels appear in a visible form, NOT to all Believers, but to those chosen for special ministeries such as Prophets. Such are ordained from the womb and built in such a way so as to live in 'two worlds' at the same time - the seen and the unseen. The fact remains that ALL Believers do have what we call, "Guardian Angels".
At times, God has, for some reason, permitted Believers other than Prophets to see Angels. Elisha, the Prophet could easily see the mountains around his beseiged city, filled with a host of horses and chariots of fire; But the young man with him could not see it. The Bible records that Elisha prayed and asked God to open the young man's eyes (spiritually) that he might see. In answer to the Prophet's prayer God permitted the young man to see the heavenly host of the Lord. (2nd Kings 6:17)
To peer beyond the veil and perceive such highly refined beings as Angels we must needs be very sensitive to the Spiritual realm. Even then we must procede with caution, realizing that Satan and his angels also disguise themselves as "Angels of Light" (2nd Corinthians 11:14-15). Any experience with the Supernatural should be "tested" with the Bible to make sure it's entirely Scriptural.
There are numerous cases on record where people just before their passing from this world, have witnessed attending angels. Apparently from the words of Jesus, it is one of the duties of angelic beings to transport the human spirit, when it leaves its crumbling tenement of clay, into the dimension where the righteous are awaiting the resurrection. (Luke 16:22). It appears that when the grosser human senses fail, the senses of the spirit become quickened and are able to witness things that ordinary mortals cannot. I refer you to the the account already given in a previous chapter of Sister Branham's passing into the other dimension. She spoke of two beings in white who were waiting to escort her beyond time into eternity.
For "The Man Sent From GOD" the supernatural was becoming more and more a part of his everyday life. But at times all these things left the young William Branham frustrated, not knowing the full purpose of God for his life and ministry. Up to this point God had blessed him in his ministry but he did not fully understand the "purpose" of God sending this kind of a "vision ministry". The world had already received a witness of signs and wonders healing ministries, but THIS MINISTRY WAS DIFFERENT. In Scripture this type of ministry is called an "Open Vision Ministry". In 1st Sameul 3:1 we read:
"And the Word of the Lord was Precious (rare) in those days; there was no open (frequent) vision."
It was then that God raised up the Prophet Samuel with a Frequent Vision ministry. And the Ministry that God had given William Branham was comparable to that of the Old Testament Prophets and our Lord Jesus Christ. It was indeed a Ministry of Open and Frequent visions.
No wonder that this young 'Kentucky hillbilly' from the backwoods was puzzled as to WHY God would commission him with such a ministry. WHAT was he to do with it? WHERE was he to go with it? HOW was God going to use it to fulfill what the Voice said in 1933 when the Pillar of Fire came down on the Ohio River? There were many questions that William Branham sought answers for. All these things came to their climax when in may of 1946, as he was walking under a large maple tree a Mighty Rushing Wind struck the top of the tree, moved down towards him, causing him to stagger under the impact. That was another 'turning point' in his life. He was driven to desperation to understand his peculiar life and ministry.
He cancelled plans for the fishing trip that he and some brethren were about to take that afternoon. Instead he said Good-bye to his wife and children and headed for his cave, determined to find the answers to his questions. It was there in That Cave, after he had spent some hours in prayer that God gave him the answers he sought for. Yes! An Angel from the Eternal Presence of God came to deliver the Message to William Branham. When the Angel walked into the cave Bro. Branham became fearful. Seeing this fear on the Prophet the Angel said, "Fear not! I am sent from the Presence of Almighty God to tell you of your peculiar life and misunderstood ways."
During this first of many visitations, the Angel conversed with Brother Branham for about half an hour, explaining the ministry and his next commission. However, the results of that Angelic visitation to William Branham brought forth a steadily rising tide of revival that sounded out throughout the world. The Angel told Bro. Branham that he would be given "Two Signs" to take the Message of Divine Healing around the world. As we shall see in other chapters and pages in this Web Site that this part of his ministry was fulfilled, above and beyond all human expectations.
In 1955 the Angel came in person to Bro. Branham again, giving another commission and further instructions concerning his ministry. He was shown that his ministry to the Bride of the Lord Jesus would come to it's climax in "Three Phases or Three Pulls". The Third Pull would be the climax and final phase of his ministry.
And climax it did! In February 1963, Seven Mighty Angels came with his fifth and final commission - the Mystery of the Seven Seals of Revelation chapter 5 through 8. Refering to this series of meetings, Bro. Branham said, "Of all the services I have ever had in my life, I believe this week has been the most glorious time of all my life in services. I have seen great miracles performed in healing services, BUT this is beyond that."
Indeed he had seen God do marvelous works during the first Two Pulls (phases) of his mnistry but to him the Breaking of those Seven Seals was most important. Come with us into the next chapter as we go back and reherse the things that transpired in his ministry after the first visitation of the Angel in 1946. Without a doubt we must confess that "There has been a mighty Prophet in the land."
When the Angel commissioned Bro. Branham in 1946 he said that Jesus was coming very soon, and that this commission was one of the signs of the nearness of His coming. He was told that if he would be sincere and get the people to believe, nothing would stand before his prayer, not even cancer. The Angel told the Prophet that he would be with him where ever he went. Indeed the Presence of that Angel from the Presence of God has been felt around the world. The effects of that Ministry shook the Church to discover it's very foundations. Yes, this Open Vision Ministry became and remains a challenge to the Faith of all professing Christians everywhere. May your faith be challenged in these pages to find it's foundations not in a denominational, inter-denominational or non-denominational church, but in the Living Word (the Lord Jesus Christ) made manifest in this Age.