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1This morning we will look at several attributes that separate the true Believer from the make believer. Attributes that separate between the True Vine and the False Vine, and the first one we will look at is Vindication. The True Vine understand vindication. what it is and what it is not. They understand that although God vindicates by backing up many different things, persons and ministries, the ultimate vindication of God lies in His backing up His own Word, His "Thus Saith the Lord".
3As we pointed out in a sermon we preached on understanding Vindication at the beginning of August, brother Branham taught us that God not only vindicates His Own Word, but he also vindicates the following, and each of these things God vindicates can be backed up with quotes from the Prophet of God and from scripture.
6Just because God vindicates you as a Christian doesn't mean you have "thus Saith the Lord" or everyone is suppose to listen to you now. The Word of the Lord comes from God through His prophets. God said in Amos 3:7 that he would not reveal anything except it come through one of His prophets. That's His channel for revelation.
8Notice brother Branham continues, "That's how God vindicates all of His nature. What? By their fruits. That's the way He vindicates His ministry. That's right. All of His servants are vindicated the same way He vindicates nature. How do you know it's a peach tree? 'Cause it bring peaches. How do you know it's an apple tree? Bearing apples. How do you know it's a Christian? Christian signs bear from it; Christian life comes out of it. How do you know he's a teacher? The Word comes from him. How do you know he's a prophet? The Word comes through him, bears record, vindication. It proves itself. How does it become that? When it dies and becomes one. That's right. When we die and become a new creature in Christ Jesus, it gets us with our calling; we stay with our calling. The fruits of the Spirit follow us when we are His servants. When we are borned again, the fruits of Christ's Life follows us. That's right. How do you know it's a peach tree? It's got peaches. How do you know he's a Christian? He acts like Christ; he walks like Christ; he talks like Christ; he lives like Christ, above sin, victorious. What does he do, say, "See what I done"? Christ didn't do that. He gave all praise to the Father. That's right. That's how you know it. By their fruits you shall know them. What must..."Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a man be born again he cannot even understand the Kingdom of God."
9And what does that tell you? It tells you the reason so many people are so messed up in their minds, because they are not born again. The Spirit of Christ is not living their life for them, and they don't want Christ to live in anyone else either.
10From his sermon, I will restore 54-0620A P:38 Now, notice. A man can be ever so fundamental in his doctrine; he can be ever so sincere in his heart (I hope this sinks deep. I want it to.), but unless God confirms it, it's no good. God vindicates. God always has, from back at the beginning, from Abel, plumb on to the ending over here in Revelations, you'll find out that God a vindicates His Church with signs and wonders as the believers. Believers always have signs and wonders among them.
Obey the voice of the angel 50-0713 P:16 Now, we know that He's here with us tonight. He's sent His Spirit to vindicate that His Presence is with His Church
12Harvest time 64-1212 P:69 He vindicates every Word, and we live by It. Hallelujah. Live by It. "Man shall live by every Word," every Word vindicated. Jesus said, "These signs shall follow them that believe. Shall follow them that believe." Take ahold of It; God vindicates It, that It's the Truth.
13Paradox a 62-0128A P:99 The Bible said there are given to us first apostles, prophets, teachers, pastors, all for the correction of the church, to keep the church in order. Sometimes our pastors tells us things that it trims us. But God vindicates it by the man with the Word, proves it.
15Presuming 62-0117 P:76 These are the commandments; these are the things to watch. The fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, long-suffering, faith, goodness, meekness, gentleness, patience. That's the fruit of the Spirit. That's the things, the evidences; that's the vindication. That's how God vindicates it. He proves it to you. ... but God vindicated Israel. How did Cain, when he made an altar just as pretty, or prettier than Abel's, he offered fruits. He give his tithes; he brought his income into the house of the Lord. He knelt on the altar; he bowed hisself. He prayed; he worshipped, just as sincere as any man. But God vindicated Abel by consuming his sacrifice.
16Why it had to be shepherds 64-1221 P:67 We must be one in agreement with the Word. Not what somebody else says, This is of no private interpretation. Take It, what It says, and believe It; and God will vindicate It, and prove that It's right. You think it's just for disciples only, take His Word for it; go try it once and see. You'll find out that it will work for you just the same as He promised. Yes, sir
17Now, we could continue showing quotes from God's prophet concerning vindication, and he doesn't assign it only to God's prophets. He assigns it to many things, such as "God vindicates His truth, God vindicates His gifts, God vindicates His ministries, God vindicates His Apostles, God vindicates His Prophets, God vindicates His teachers, God vindicates His Pastors, God vindicates His servants, God vindicates His children, God vindicates His Word, God vindicates His Message, God vindicates you if you are a Christian, and God vindicates Believers, God vindicates His Church, God vindicates His Word and God vindicates His presence.
18So we see that the true Vine will hold to vindication and she will know the difference between a true five fold minister and a vindicated prophet who has come with Thus saith the Lord. For all Christians, and believers, and five fold ministers are subject to "Thus saith the Lord" even as the prophet who comes with it is subject to it. The problem as I see it is that people have lost site of the fact that God Himself came down with a Message, it is His message, and did not become William Branham's Message until God revealed it to Him, and then when that revelation was made known to the Elect, she receives it and it become her revelation, her Message as well. For He said, "She (the bride) will have "thus Saith the Lord or she will keep still". And we know that "Thus saith the Lord" is simply what "the Lord has Thus said".
21Hebrews 3:6 But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end. As brother Branham said in his sermon, Mark of the beast 54-0513 P:24 And what little Light we got, hold onto It. That's what the Apostle Paul is also saying here.
227 Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice, (now, remember what we brought out Wednesday night, to hear means to understand, so he is saying here) if ye will understand his voice 8 Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness: 9 When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years. 10 Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways. 11 So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.) 12 Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
23So we see that those who have not known God's ways, will not enter into His rest. And we also see here that only the elect will hold fast to the Word God has vindicated to be true. and by holding fast to God's Word, she has entered into rest with God's Word.
24Hebrews 4:14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. Now, this word profession Paul uses here is the same word confession Jesus used when he said if you confess me before men I will confess you before my Father.
25The Greek word is homologia which is two Greek words which make up the one word. Homo meaning the same and logia or logos, which is means the same Word. If you say the same word about me to men, I will say the same word to My father about you. And what can I say to men that Jesus will say to Our Father? We are brothers. And notice Paul says here, "let us hold fast our profession, which is our confession". In other words let us hold fast to the same Word he said.
26That is why when God vindicates anyone, whether it be called a Christian, or believer, or church, or minister, or five fold, or even prophet, because what God is actually vindicating is His own Word in you, that's reflecting from you. It can be no other way, for God will only back up His own Word. And if its His Word you are reflecting, He will back up that reflection, and vindicate it to all.
Hebrews 10:23-25 Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) 24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
27Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. 12 Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. 13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. 14 And I will be found of you, saith the LORD:
291Thessalonians 5:21 Pray without ceasing. 18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. 19 Quench not the Spirit. 20 Despise not prophesyings (preaching). 21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. 22 Abstain from all appearance of evil. 23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.
32Psalms 10:4 The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts. 5 His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight: as for all his enemies, he puffeth at them. 6 He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved: for I shall never be in adversity. 7 His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud: under his tongue is mischief and vanity. 8 He sitteth in the lurking places of the villages: in the secret places doth he murder the innocent: his eyes are privily set against the poor. Now this word poor was translated from the Hebrew word chelka and it does not speak of being poor in terms of wealth, but rather those who are poor in understanding, who sit in darkness, those without understanding. and those who are not happy. So what does that tell you. Those who are in poor spirits, who are not happy, this wicked person will seek them out privately and will tend to their unhappiness by coming against the innocent, by lying in wait as a lion stalking his pray. As I mentioned last week, in the book of Jude it says they creep in and sit down with you and eat from the same table. And the word crept in unawares, suggests they come in using stealth, and undercover, not openly and honestly.
34Now, this word poor was translated from a totally different Hebrew Word altogether, aniy and it means those who are depressed, in mind or circumstances. Those who are afflicted, humbled, and needy. In other words, like the Liberal politician, they work on the resentment of the downcast to come against those in authority, to try and blame all their depressed conditions on those in authority. "he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net. 10 He croucheth, (notice the wording here. DCrouches like a lion ready to pounce on his victim.) and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones.
35Again we see how he uses stealth and false humility to catch their prey into their snare, then after he has done his damage, notice what David tells us is the attitude of this false vine... 11 He hath said in his heart, "God hath forgotten: he hideth his face; he will never see it."
36In other words they say, God don't see my motives, God don't know my real objectives, I've masked them so well to deceive the poor fool. And they do not believe they will stand before the Judgment seat of Christ. That is why God reveals everything that is hidden, all motives, all objectives. They will be shouted from the tree tops.
37Isaiah 55:7-11 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: 7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. 8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. 10 For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: 11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
39In fact that is what we read in Psalms 103:7 7 He made known his ways unto Moses, his acts unto the children of Israel. Notice the people could see the visible actions of God but they never understood his motives and objectives behind doing what he did.
40Now Moses understood, and if they had listened to Moses they would have also understood as he understood. And that is why we people could see the miracles that God did through his Son Jesus and some of them called Jesus Christ "Belzebub" which means "chief of the devils", but notice on the other hand that some who saw the acts of God that God did using the vessel of William Branham thought he was God. You see the two extremes that unbelief can express itself in? It is because they do not have the Holy Ghost and therefore can not understand the things of God.
41And remember they are religious, the false vine are. In fact Br. Branham said in his sermon, God's eye 58-0225 P:25 Unbelief is one of the most horrible things there is. Let me go any way, but don't let me be a religious unbeliever. Unbelief is the only sin that there is. Smoking, drinking, committing adultery, cursing, swearing, that's not sin. That's the attributes of unbelief. "He that believeth not is condemned already." And people who claim to be religious, go to church, pious, and still rank unbelievers, sinners, Jesus said, "You're of your father, the devil." And yet they were just as pious and religious as they could be. The worst demon there is to deal with is a religious demon. They are five times more horrible than any other evil spirit.
42Oneness of unity 58-0128 P:32 Now, a pastor, any cult, some little literature you'd read might say to you, "The days of miracles is passed." That's a good place for the devil to slip one of those spirits in there and make you a worse person, you was when you were a sinner, 'cause a religious sinner is the worst of all. That's the worst; Jesus said so. It's the worst spirit.
43Worst sinner in the city 56-0218E P:76 The Pharisee was all religious, but he was the worst sinner in the country. And it's still the worst sinner the world has got... is the stiffy, starch, backslidden church, the pastor the same way. Hallelujah.
44True vine and the false vine 55-0607 P:40 And now, see, they showed the uttermost parts. Said, "Well, I know somebody was prayed for, that didn't get well. Certainly, I know a lot was preached to didn't saved, either. That's exactly true. See, but they show the uttermost parts, the back parts, the worst part. That's the way the devil does it. And watch how it happens. Took him out there and showed him the back parts of it. And then notice. When he said got all together... Now, here's the picture. Watch this brethren; watch this. This vine here, and this vine here, this one is of Abel coming up, this is of Cain coming up. Cain was religious; this one's religious. Cain was fundamental; they were fundamental. Abel had the right way, by revelation, by signs and wonders. God always has, and always will vindicate His Church and people by miraculous signs and wonders. Call to me any time that a revival ever broke out through time in the history, that there wasn't signs and wonders followed it. What's the matter today, my brethren, is this: We are letting down. We're letting down to mental theology. We're letting down to intellectual faith, when we ought to pray until God moves in the audience and goes to doing something for us.
45Earnestly contending for the faith 53-0614A P:50 Now, Balak, the king of Moab, he wasn't a infidel. He was a believer. Sure he was. And Balaam wasn't a infidel. Balaam, the prophet, he was a believer. But here's two sets of believers, them same spirit, like Cain and Abel, they'd come right down again. Now notice, here was a man, the king of Moab said, "Come down and curse this people," believers cursing the believers. Now, Balak come down, got up on the hill, and Balaam showed him the most--uttermost parts.
47Ezekiel 18:29 Yet say ye, Why? doth not the son bear the iniquity of the father? When the son hath done that which is lawful and right, and hath kept all my statutes, and hath done them, he shall surely live.
48Now, look what God is saying, here. I don't care what wrong your daddy did, if you yourself are willing to do what is right, live right, and do right, and believe right I will accept you, and you shall live. I will not hold against you the sin of your fathers, I will hold your sin against you if you die in your sin. BUt look how God is saying, I will give you a chance to prove yourself, just like he said to Cain, "You rightly offered right but you did not rightly divide, therefore I rejected your sacrifice, but if you will do as your brother did, then I will accept your offering". But did Cain accept God's terms of God's Covenant? No way. He killed his brother instead.
4920 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. 21 But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath already committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. 22 All his transgressions that he hath already committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live. 23 Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live? 24 But when the righteous turns away from his righteousness, and commits iniquity, and does according to all the abominations that the wicked man does, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die. 25 Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal? 26 When a righteous man turns away from his righteousness, and commits iniquity, and dies in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die. 27 Again, when the wicked man turns away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and does that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. 28 Because he considers, and turns away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die. 29 Yet saith the house of Israel, The way of the Lord is not equal. O house of Israel, are not my ways equal? are not your ways unequal? 30 Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. 31 Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? 32 For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dies, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.
51Psalms 1:4-6 The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. 5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the rightly-wise. 6 For the LORD knoweth (the Lord watches over) the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish. (that word perish was translated from the Hebrew word aw-bad which means they are left to themselves.)
55Jeremiah 8:5 Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? (now that is a good question, and he tells us the reason. he says,) they hold fast to deceit, they refuse to return. 6 I hearkened and heard, but they spake not aright: no man repented him of his wickedness, saying, What have I done? every one turned to his course, as the horse rushes into the battle. 7 Yea, the stork in the heaven knows her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the LORD. 8 How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of the LORD is with us? Lo, certainly in vain made he it; the pen of the scribes is in vain. 9 The wise men are ashamed, they are dismayed and taken: lo, they have rejected the word of the LORD; and what wisdom is in them?
56Hebrews 10:26 For if we sin wilfully (and that is the key right there. Willfully. "If we sin wilfully after that we having received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins, 27 But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. (in other words, all those who sin willfully have to look forward to is a fiery judgment) 28 He that despised Moses' law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:
57Now, what does it mean to despise the law of Moses? The word despised was translated from the Greek word atheteo and it doesn't mean to make fun of. Oh, no, Satan would never do that, he's too slick. It actually means to set aside, i.e. (by implication) to disesteem, to neutralize or to violate:--in other words to cast off, despise, disannul, frustrate, to bring to nought, to reject.
58And remember Jude told us they would despise dominion (that is those who have the rule over you who bring the Word of God as Paul said, and then Jude said) and they speak evil of dignities (That's the doxa of God). They speak evil of the values of God, the things God esteems they disesteem.
59And Paul continues in Hebrews 10:29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy (common) thing, and hath done despite (insult) unto the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. 31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
60Matthew 15:19 And Jesus said, Are ye also yet without understanding? 17 Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? 18 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. 19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: 20 These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.