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1Last night we spoke from the first part of 2 Corinthians 3:15 where the Apostle Paul said, But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. 16 Nevertheless when it (the heart) shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away. 17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
2We focused on the Holy Spirit and the condition of our heart and how God doesn’t even look at what you do unless it is done from the bottom of your heart. So it matters not what your mind is capable of knowing, but rather it matters altogether what condition your heart is in. And you know, I really loved what Martin Luther had to say about our motives for what we do. He said if what we do is out of fear or out of seeking reward, then God is not interested in what we do, and we might as well not do it to begin with because our motives are wrong.
3And I enjoyed that article from that Science magazine that was showing the recent science behind how we actually think with our heart, and we discern with our heart, and our intuition is from the heart, and that in our heart we actually have a brain that does our real intuitive thinking and then it sends the signal to our brain. Because that scientific article really lined up with what the Scriptures teach and what Brother Branham said about “as a man thinketh in his heart so is he”.
4Now, this morning I would like to take another step forward into 2 Corinthians 4 and read from : one since this is a continuation of the same letter as we read in 3.
4:1 Therefore seeing we have this ministry, (what ministry? The ministry that takes the Word and Spirit of God like ink and writes on the tables of man’s heart and etches out the image of the invisible God which is the very likeness of the Son of God, only it is now in earthen vessels, in the hearts of the sons of God. And then Paul continues, as we have received mercy, we faint not; (In other words there is something about receiving mercy that gives us energy and purpose. Notice these Words, as we have received mercy, we faint not;
5Now, you faint when you are either too tired to continue to stand, or you faint when you are become dizzy from too much action. But here he says that we don’t faint, we have a pill called mercy and when we receive this mercy, it causes us to not get too dizzy, and it causes us not to get so tired that we fall down faint. Now, I like that because when you have been beaten down under condemnation, and you are constantly exhausting yourself from the battle, and one day you enter into a place of rest and peace, which comes because there is not any condemnation, and there is only Mercy and Peace, then it gives you energy to do. You are energized by mercy. Now, isn’t that strange. You would think peace and rest would make you lazy and not want to do, but this Scripture tells us that as we receive mercy we faint not.
6Now, I remember as a kid, I would faint in church a lot, especially if I had to sit next to a fat woman who smelled funny to me. But as soon as I fainted, my dad would take me out and open a bottle of smelling salts and that would straighten me right up. Hewey!!!!
7And this scripture tells us here that when we receive mercy we are energized. There’s something about receiving mercy that energizes you. There’s something about mercy that revitalizes you. There’s something about mercy that makes you want to come around mercy and enter into that atmosphere again and again.
8So let’s look at this attribute of the invisible God because Jesus was the Image of the invisible God and it wasn’t his beard or hair or body size that was the image of the invisible, because invisible doesn’t have beard, or hair, or body size. But invisible can be seen by the expression of attributes and characteristics.
10From his sermon, Identification 64-0216 P:23 Brother Branham said, “the Character of God was Christ. He was the Reflection. He was God made visible: notice, God made visible. In the beginning was God. He wasn't even God then. No, a God's an object of worship. Only thing He was, was the eternal, and in Him was attributes. And those attributes were thoughts. And those thoughts was expressed to words, and word was made manifest. What is it? It's all God becoming tangible. And you are part of God. And Jesus come to redeem those that was put on the Lamb's Book of Life before the foundation of the world. It was in God's thoughts. And that's what He come to redeem. And them, as soon as it strikes to them, they see it, because the life is in there. But if the life isn't in there, then what can they do? See? They don't see it. They'll never see it. See? And the whole thing is, Jesus said, "At that day you'll know I'm in the Father, the Father in Me, I in you, and you in Me." The whole thing is God becoming material, like a husband and wife becoming one together: God and His church becoming one.
11nd one of those attributes that manifested the character of God was mercy, and Jesus was the expression of God’s mercy, and when you come into that atmosphere it gives you a boost and you faint not.
12Choosing of a bride 65-0429E P:69 See, we choose by sight. God chooses by character. Character, there never was a Character like Jesus Christ. It lives in Him, manifests in. We see it true. It's not worldly beauty of Him that attracts His Bride; it is His character, the character of the church that Jesus looks for; not whether it's big buildings; whether it's great denominations; whether it's big membership. He promised to meet with wherever two or three are gathered together. Truly. That's where the true believer rests his hopes, is upon that Word of God being vindicated in truth, what it is. Choose by His Word. Not a worldly loving group, they hate that. No wonder she is divorced from Him, because she's missed His revelation, and she don't have it. He cares not for her, the way she acts and does, and how much of this worldly stuff she has; He's looking for her character, the character of Christ.
13Now, here is the thing I am trying to say. Jesus is th very character of God expressed. In fact when brother Branham explains the prayer of Jesus in John 17 he tells us that God is the Word and how Jesus and God were one is that Jesus expressed God’ Word.
14From the sermon HARVEST TIME 641212 87 034 William Branham said, Jesus said, "That they might be one, Father, as You and I are one." Not for some man to be over something, it never will work; one denomination wants to take over the other, and one man over the other. But that you might be one with God, like Christ and God was one; that's what the prayer is. That... He was the Word, and Jesus prayed that we might be the Word, reflecting Him. That's His prayer to be answered. See how Satan scruples it up in the carnal mind? But that wasn't Jesus' prayer, at all, that we might all congregate together and all have a certain creed and so forth. Every time they do it, they go further and further from God. He wants us to be one with God, and God is the Word. Each individual in his heart must be that one with God.
So we se here in brother Branham's own words that the Oneness that Jesus had with the Father and that he prayed that we would have is that we might be one with the Word even as Jesus was One with God's Word, for God is the Word. And that is how God will come into us when we say the same thing, do the same things, act the same way, reflect the same character. When our confession becomes His confession. When our thoughts become His thoughts, "let this mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus."
What more can a man ask of his wife than to have the same mind-set concerning the family and the raising of the children. What grater oneness than to share the same values, opinions, and judgments. And what more could a Father ask of his children than for them to share His values, opinions, and judgments. And that is what Jesus prayed for.
GIFTS 56-1207 E-30 Now, notice closely. Now, God dwelling in Christ used His voice to speak by. Jesus said in His miracle, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, the Son can do nothing in Himself, but what He sees the Father doing, that doeth the Son likewise." Is that right? Saint John 5:19. Then He did not do nothing within Himself. No prophet ever did anything within himself, until first God showed what to do. What a mistake Moses made when he went out without the vision of God and smote down the Egyptian, thought he'd liberate them with his hands, because he thought he had a lot of faith and could do it, because he was called for the job. No matter how much you're called for the job, God has to do the leading. See? He failed. Of all of his schooling and his military mind and his training as a great Egyptian leader. But yet it failed, 'cause God had a program and we've got to work according to God's program. No matter what we do, how smart we are, we've got to humble ourselves and work according to God's program. Amen. So he failed and God had to keep him another forty years to educate him. So what it was, that he must forget himself, and it's not him, but it was God.
18And why do you think we’ve had to wait almost 50 years since God took home His prophet. He's waiting for us to get ourselves out of the way, that God might have the pre-eminence, and that we might think God's thoughts, and do His actions, and speak only His words. That's what He's waiting for. And adoption can not come until the son has the mind of the father.
From the sermon, SHOW US THE FATHER AND IT WILL SATISFY 60-0731 E-15 Brother Branham said, "The works that I do, shall you also.” And seeing the same results by human beings so submitted to God, until the Holy Spirit can work through those human beings just like the Holy Spirit worked through Jesus, Who just has confessed that, "I and My Father are One. My Father dwelleth in Me. He doeth the works. It's not My words; it's His words."... See? He was so submitted to God.
And from the sermon, UNVEILING OF GOD 64-0614M 257 Brother Branham said, Jesus once said, "When you see Me, you see the Father.” See? God and His Word is One. Now you understand? When the Word is manifested, what is It? Right. See? 260 Jesus said, "Search the Scriptures, you think you have... You believe in God, believe also in Me. If I do not the works of My Father, then don't believe Me. But if I do do the works, I and My Father are One. When you see Me, you have seen the Father.” And when you see the Word made manifest, you see the Father God, because the Word is the Father; the Word is God. And the Word made manifest is God Himself taking His Own Word and manifesting It among believers. Nothing can make It live but believers, just believers.
Now, in getting back to St. John 17:23. Jesus continues praying, “I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me. 24. ¶ Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; (see, that's a desire for presence) that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. 25. O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. 26 And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.
21Now, we are talking about how God and Jesus are one, and in the same way how we become one with God. And if God is the God of Mercy, then we must become the children of God expressing that attribute of our Father which he is full of Mercy.
24And Romans 9:16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy. So if that is the character of God on display for you and me, then what ought our character be displaying but his character.
25That’s why Jesus tells us in Luke 6:36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful. Why? Because every seed must bring forth after it’s kind or nature. And if God is merciful, he says we also must be full of mercy.
And notice our promise in Matthew 5:7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
34So we see those who have obtained mercy faint not, because when you show mercy it gives those people you are showing mercy to a certain lift, a certain energy. Like people who have said, I had gotten to the place where I didn’t even like to go to church, but now I am excited about coming to church again. That’s because of the atmosphere which is the projecting of mercy and love. When we receive mercy we faint not.
35Choosing of a bride 65-0429E P:33 The real true borned again church must have the character that was in Christ, because the husband and wife are one. And if Jesus did only that which pleased God, kept His Word and manifested His Word, His Bride will have to be of the same kind of character. She could not by no means be a denomination, because then no matter how much you want to say "No," she's controlled by a board somewhere that tells her what to do and what she can't do, and many times a million miles off the true Word.
37God identified by characteristics 64-0311 P:21 The prophets were God with them. Jesus said so. He said, "If you call them who the Word of God come to, 'gods,' how can you condemn Me when I say I'm the Son of God?" See? So where the Word that's been spoken by God is a-vindicated, then that is God making Hisself known by His characteristic, fulfilling His Word. It needs no interpretation. It's already interpreted Itself, proves what It is. Just the same as He said, "Let there be light" and there was light; you don't have to say, "Well, what did that mean?" It means just... There it is; that proves it. It's already come to pass.Now, Jesus said that, "If I do not the works of My Father," or other words, "if I don't have the characteristic of My Father, don't believe it. They identify My character, Who I am. If you can't believe Me, then believe the identification that God has give. If I don't... If My character doesn't identify My position, then don't believe My claims.” See? You get it tonight? How many understands it? Raise your hand. See? "If My character does not identify Who I claim to be," said Jesus, "then If you can't believe Me, why, just believe the identification of the character that I am."
39Identification 64-0216 P:41 The Word molds God's character to us. your character will not mix with the world, if you are being molded in the form of God, by letting the mind that was in Christ be in you. That's the control tower, the direction.
40Token the 63-0901M P:138 And it displays His power. John, 14:12, says, "He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also." New Testament is new covenant, new life. Shows Jesus has met every requirement for us that God required to make us back truly sons and daughters of God, under the Blood where there is no more condemnation. Romans 8:1, "There is therefore now no condemnation to them that are in (not those who are believing it), those who are in Christ Jesus, that walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit." "And My Word is Spirit and life?." Oh, couldn't I take a text from that, and stay about a couple more hours, but we'll hurry over it. You see? No more condemnation; free from sin; free from the cares of the world. No condemn... Why? To them that have been by one Spirit baptized into one Body, there the Blood of the Lamb has been applied. The God of heaven has accepted you. And His life is in you, and you are sons and daughters of God. Your character is God's character.
41And now, listen…if there is now therefore no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus what then is your character reflecting? No condemnation. You don’t go around judging, you pray for those who need help, you don’t criticize them and tear them down, you reach out and help them up.
42Remember what we read last night? Brother Branham said, so what if they are wrong, help them, love them. That’s the Character of the Messiah, and that’s your character. We become one with God by becoming reflectors his Word.
43God identifying Himself 64-0320 P:31 The Bible don't give an uncertain sound. It identifies the characteristic of God in Its sounding. Jesus said in St. John 10:37, "If I do not the works of My Father, and I don't have that character of My Father, then don't believe Me. They are the one... They identify His character in Me, His characteristics, because the Father is the Word." In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. And the characteristic of God is displayed by His promise for that age.
44Now isn’t that a beautiful thought? If I do not reflect the character of God then you don’t have to believe me. Why do we so love brother Branham? Was it because he taught us doctrine? Now, come on, millions of people follow this man’s ministry and have no clue to the doctrine. They love him because he reflected the character of God in his life.
The Bible says we love God because he first loved us. And we love that character even if we don’t have it ourselves, but when we saw a man that had the character of Christ we want to be like that man, because deep down we want to have that character ourselves.
47Therefore we see that the scripture points us to be focused upon God's Mercy as we see in James 5:11 Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.
48Also we see the same attributes expressed in the book of Jude 1:20 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, (Revelation) praying in the Holy Ghost, 21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. 22 And of some have compassion, making a difference: 23 And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh. 24 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, 25 To the only wise God our Saviour, [be] glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.
Let me read this from the Message Translation: But you, dear friends, carefully build yourselves up in this most holy faith by praying in the Holy Spirit, staying right at the center of God's love, keeping your arms open and outstretched, ready for the mercy of our Master, Jesus Christ. This is the unending life, the real life! 22-23Go easy on those who hesitate in the faith. Go after those who take the wrong way. Be tender with sinners, but not soft on sin. The sin itself stinks to high heaven.
50In closing, brother Branham said in his sermon, Testimony on the sea 62-0720 P:28 God have mercy upon us. If we are the sons and daughters of God, yet we're an alien in this life... God's looking for character from men and women who can conduct themselves as sons and daughters of the King. God have mercy on us, that we will do it. That's what I'm after friends: character. That's what God's pulling for, character for that Bride that will be taken out. And as sons and daughters of God, let's act like it; be sons and daughters. God help us.
54God in His people 50-0227 3 And then, as I bring Christ to you, He will be on your hand. And you'll have to answer for what attitude you took towards it: if you turned it down, or if you accepted it. God will have you to answer for your attitude of this meeting, so you must realize it's a very sacred thing.
55And not only do you receive what you expect, but you will also be judged for your attitude. It is the attitude that expresses what we are, and that you will be judged for. And you will take your attitude with you because your attitude is an expression of your character. It is an expression in your body of the nature of your inner man. And for that you will be judged.
561. Your attitude will produce a result, depending on the attitude you display.
2. Your attitude does not create an atmosphere, but rather expresses the atmosphere in which you live. It is the expression of the nature of your soul and thus it creates an atmosphere around you of who you are. You are identified with the attitude you express.
3. And thus you are judged, and will be judged for the attitude you display to others, and the attitude you display toward God.
4. Thus your attitude will not only affect your own self, but has an affect on others.
57Your attitude then shows outwardly what you are thinking inwardly. You can not hide an attitude, it shows, it manifests. You might be able to hide your thoughts but an attitude goes beyond inner thoughts. Attitude speaks of the expression of your disposition, the way you show it in your body language; in your eyes, in your facial expression, in your tone of voice, and in your posture. Therefore attitude is the expression of your opinion, and your disposition.
58Now the word disposition comes from two words, "dis", and “position”. Together they speak of the putting in order and refers to the normal aspects of ones nature. Therefore what we see in attitude is the disposition or the setting in order or the outward reflection of ones true nature. Now, this leads us to our final point which is this…
59What is the right mental attitude is. Well, to have the right attitude means you would first have to have the rights thoughts about whatever the object of your thinking is. And that means you must have the right opinion, and there is only one right opinion and that is God's opinion. What does God think about it, Because His thoughts are not our thoughts, for His thoughts are higher than our thoughts, and if we are to have a right thinking about anything, it must be what God thinks about it. And in order to know what God's thoughts are about anything, it must come through the instrument of His Word, for out of the abundance of the mouth the heart speaketh.