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1Desperation September 1, 1963 pp. 7 Now, you people in the tapes in there, I would that, I think now... This morning, the message this morning, was to me the highlight message of my entire ministry, this morning (See?), highlight message of my entire ministry. Someday I'll tell you how it come about. And I know that everything has worked for months and months and months up to that one message, moving up to come to that place. That was the capping-off time of it. You see? And, it's a...
28 Now, I'm sure, or hope, that you got what the Token meant. See? The Token (Let me add, the Holy Ghost Baptism) is the sign that the Blood has been applied, that the price that's been asked, required of God, Jesus paid that price by shedding His own Blood. He did that. Then, from His life came the Holy Spirit. And when the Blood is applied to you, the Holy Spirit is a Token (a sign) that your price is paid. God has received you, and that's the Token. Remember, that is the Token.
39 Now, there's many people who doesn't... They don't know what that Token is (See?), and you have to make it like that nobody knows it (See?), so that all of them will get it. Just like preaching salvation, we have to preach salvation in a way that everybody, it's for everybody, which we know it isn't. We have to preach Divine healing for everybody, yet we know it isn't. See? Jesus come to save those who was in the Book of Redemption before the foundation of the world. He only come to save those. Who they are, I don't know. See? But you, nobody can have faith unless you say it's for whosoever, and it is. Nobody can come unless God's called them. That is true.
410 So there's many people that won't be saved. We know that. They're... God knew that before the world began, that they wouldn't be saved. There's many that won't be healed (See?), many won't be healed. They just can't grasp it. They don't know what it is. Many will be. But we preach it that it's for everybody, because we don't know who that person is; we just don't know. But that is a whosoever. But some people just can't grasp that faith. Now, and the same thing about this Token. The Token, we have talked to the Token all the way along, but now is the manifestation of the Token. See?
5This evening we will focus our thoughts on what brother Branham's said here, "Jesus come to save those who was in the Book of Redemption before the foundation of the world. He only come to save those. Who they are, I don't know. See? But you, nobody can have faith unless you say it's for whosoever, and it is. Nobody can come unless God's called them. That is true. So there's many people that won't be saved. We know that. They're... God knew that before the world began, that they wouldn't be saved."
6Therefore this evening I would like to take this thought here for our text, and entitle this study, The foreknowledge of God in Predestination, because the thought is dealing with the Scriptural doctrine that shows God is omniscient and knew who would and who would not before the foundations of the world, so he had to predetermine a path for all these things to happen as he foreknew them to happen.
7This evening it will be good for us to visit this understanding of the foreknowledge of God in Predestination because most people have been turned away from the true Gospel unto another Gospel and thus have no true understanding of the sovereign God who has a Sovereign plan, a Sovereign Purpose and a Sovereign Choice. Furthermore, most people have no clue to the true understanding of the foreknowledge of God and how that foreknowledge plays a significant role in the predestination of God in our lives.
8The main emphasis on the Foreknowledge of God as taught in the majority of pulpits today has nothing to do with the true essence of God by Foreknowledge planning and preparing, but has been twisted altogether to the place where it is being taught that the foreknowledge of God has to do with man’s choice and God’s passive acceptance of that choice, and thus God making His selection based on knowing beforehand what choice you will make.
9Now, In order to understand the Foreknowledge of God or the fore-ordination or God, we must look to the Scriptures without any denominational filter over our eyes. We must be willing in our heart to read God’s Word the way He wrote it, instead of the way we were taught to interpret it.
10When God's Word speaks of His Eternal purpose and plan, it shows how He elects certain ones to be conformed to the image of His Son. However, most ministers are blinded by their Bible training, which in reality is anti-Bible training, and they will thus argue that election is based upon the foreknowledge of God, and this "foreknowledge" is interpreted by them to mean that God foresaw certain ones would be more yielding than others, and that they would respond more eagerly to the call of God, and that because God knew they would believe, He accordingly, predestinates them unto salvation. But this kind of thinking is not only fundamentally wrong, but disastrous concerning their relationship with a Sovereign God. This kind of thinking takes away from the sovereignty of God, replacing it with the sovereignty of man, and his ability to make a right decision without Divine intervention.
11To believe in the absolute power of free moral agency is to do away with the Sovereignty of God and the sovereign nature of His purpose and plan. This view of the foreknowledge of God is completely contrary from what Scriptures actually teach. To say, “God foresaw that certain ones would believe in Christ, and therefore He predestinated them unto salvation”, is the very opposite of what scripture teaches.
12The Scriptures establish that God, in His Sovereignty, singled out certain ones to be recipients of His unmerited grace. Now, God does not force man to do anything. You do it on your own free will. He will warn you, He may even throw a barricade across your path, but you walk of your own free will and you make your own decisions in His Presence as to whether you will obey Him or not. But that does not make what you do totally independent from what God has prepared for you to do. Satan has perverted God's plan to his own plan. But just because He gave you free will does not mean that he looks down the road at what you choose and then sets His whole plan of redemption based on your choice.
13Brother Branham said in the sermon, “Hear Ye Him 56-1215 E-43 And it's the works of God by grace, through foreknowledge that ordains you to Eternal Life and puts your name on the Lamb's Book of Life at the beginning. "And no man can come except My Father draws him. All that comes to me I'll give him Everlasting Life, raise him up the last day. Those who he has foreknew, he has called: those who he has called, he has justified: those who he has justified, he hath (past tense) already glorified," in glory.
14What you scared about? God calls you, your heart loves Him. "As the hart panteth for the water brook, so my soul thirsts after thee, O God." There it is. 44 Well, say, "Brother Branham, that makes it kinda loose then. As long as I believe I'm a Christian, I can do anything I want to." I always do what I want to, always. And if I want to do wrong, I know God's not in there. See? You can't get bitter and sweet water from the same fountain. That's right. You love the Lord, you'll do right. Yes, sir. If you love Him, you don't have to worry, if you love Him, just do what you want to. It'll always crying to do something for Him, crying, you love Him day and night. If something had happened, you'd happened be trapped into something, the bitter tears would run down your cheeks all night. You couldn't have no rest for the soles of your feet till you come back to the ark again. See? As long as you're a Christian...
15Acts 13:48 tells us, All that are ordained to eternal life believe. It does not say all who believe are ordained to eternal life, because that would put the emphasis on the act of believing, and not the act of God’s choosing by election which comes first, and then the believing as the result of your being elect.
17Notice, it is Him that does the calling, and it is Him that does the Electing. 12 It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. 13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated. 14 ¶ What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid. 15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
1917 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth. 18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth. 19 Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will? 20 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? 21 Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? 22 What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: 23 And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,
22This Scripture alone takes away your actions and your decision-making ability out of the picture all together. It tells me that God was determined to do something, And so He Chose whoever he would, and then gives us a free gift of Grace to receive what He has given to us freely, by His own Design, purpose and plan.
23Jesus said in, John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and [that] your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
24That ought to settle the question right there whose choice means anything to God. God determined to bestow upon you His gift of faith, and thus the ability to make a right decision, and you had not one thing to do with His choice except to accept His Gift to you.
25Jesus said to Peter, "Blessed art thou Simon for Flesh and Blood has not revealed this to you but my Father that is in heaven, and upon this rock (revelation) I will build my church and the gates of hell shall never prevail."
26False theology makes God's foreknowledge of our believing, the cause, and therefore our choosing is not the action that is foreknown, but the cause of the action. The action is God’s choosing, and our response to that choosing.
28To think that our free moral agency has anything to do with our salvation, you would have to read that scripture as, “He loved us because we first loved Him”, which is total backwards and total heresy.
29I am sure you have heard me on more than one occasion refer to the word Ginosko, and show you that this word translated as "knowledge" is more than just an intellectual understanding, but has more to do with an "experiential knowledge", or a knowledge based on actual experience.
30We also find then the words "know" and "fore-know" both signify much more than mere cognition, but rather they show an affection for the object in view. Mary said, “How can I be with child having known no man?” Therefore if the Word "Know" speaks of not only a cognitive understanding but also shows an affection for the one that is known, then we can see why all Scriptures speaking of the fore-knowledge of God would speak also of the person rather than the action which is known or affectionately referred to.
You don't have affection for actions, but rather affections are for persons. Therefore in the Old Testament and New Testament, we find that all the scriptures referring to the fore-knowledge of God, speak of His Love and affection for persons, and not for the actions of those persons.
31As parents and grandparents we love our children and grandchildren deeply. That is to be expected. But that does not mean that we approve everything our children or grand children might do. We planted the DNA into our children and therefore many of their traits and characteristics and attributes we expect them to reflect, but that does not mean we approve everything thing they do. That is why we chasten every son that we love. The DNA is predestined by planting our seed, but the actions are not predestined just because the DNA is predestined.
34Again we find in Deuteronomy 9:24 “Ye have been rebellious against the Lord from the day that I knew you". Notice again the use of the personal pronoun “You.” Now, if he cared not for Israel, he would not have even told them he was disappointed in them. But the fact that he has known them, shows an affection for them. yet that did not stop them from being rebellious. So he had to chasten them, to correct them.
36Next we find in Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee”. And again we see the use of a personal Pronoun “Thee”, that God not only formed “thee”, but before He formed in the belly, He knew "Thee".
39In Matthew 7:23 the same principle can be found. "Then will I profess unto them, I never knew you". And in this case, although it speaks in the negative sense of those Who He did not foreknow, it also speaks of an intimacy that he did not have.
40In fact Dr. Hoyer said that this speaks of the great divorcement. Why? Because of a lack of intimacy. I never Knew you... I never knew you in an intimate way as a man would know his wife in an intimate way.
41In John 10:14 Jesus says, “I am the good shepherd and know My sheep and am known of Mine”. Now, here we see a noun being used as a personal pronoun, in that the sheep represent a people who are known by Him.
42In 1 Corinthians 8:3 Paul tells us, “If any man love God, the same is known of Him".
Now, this is not saying that if any man love God first, then God will know him, because the apostle John tells us, I John 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.
43That means that the cause of our loving God is that He first loved us. His loving us is the cause and our loving Him in return is the action. Therefore, if he first Loved us, then our love is secondary and after the fact.
45In other words, God set forth a relationship with that person even before they knew Him, and thus because God had set forth the relationship into action, thus the response of the person loved by God was to Love God in return.
47If we study carefully every passage of Scriptures, we will find that Foreknowledge is never used in Scripture in connection with events or actions; but rather in all cases it is used in reference to persons. It is persons that God "foreknows," and not the actions of those persons. Therefore we can say that the person will foreknown will be conformed to the image of the first born son, and not necessarily all your actions will be approved, but you will be approved.
48After all, when we get our glorified body we will not be taking all our human frailty and shortcomings with is. Then it is reasonable to think that when we are taken up in our glorified bodies we will leave behind many of our actions and reactions. Because it is not the action and reaction he is coming for but His Seed, His children.
49I hope this will help us all to look at our children in a different light than we perhaps have done over the years when we have see ourselves and our own children make mistakes. We love the child not the mistake.
51With a careful study of the wording of this verse you will note that this was not speaking of God's foreknowledge of the act of the crucifixion, but of the Person crucified: "Him" ie: “Christ being delivered by," etc.
52Now, this does not mean that God did not foreknow the crucifixion, because He set forth His Son to be the Lamb that was slain before the foundations of the world and His Old Testament is full of prophetic utterances concerning the rejection of His Son and the crucifixion of Him. But the essence is that it is His Son that is foreknown. The action only fulfill the knowing of that one.
53You cannot read Romans 8:29-30 without coming to this understanding that God elects, and thus as a result, predestinates or predetermines the ones that He elects. "For whom He did (past tense) foreknow, He also did (past tense) predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the Firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He did (again that's past tense) predestinate, them He also called, (and that little suffix ”ed” let’s you know that the calling is also past tense.
Then if the calling, predestinating, and electing are all past tense, then what do you have to do with it at all? The answer is nothing. You are the objects of His affection even before you came to this world.
54Again, I want you to notice the wording used here. This verse does not speak of what, or of an action, but it speaks of whom He did (past tense) foreknow. It is not him that runneth nor him that willeth, but God that showeth mercy. Therefore it is all about Him, not you. You are just the recipient of His love an choosing.
55Therefore the purpose and plan of God does not focus on the action but rather the person. What action it focuses on if any is the action of what God did set in motion beforehand. Notice again, Whom He (God) did foreknow (action), so we see the action is all God’s and the knowing is all God’s and therefore as Paul taught us in Ephesians 2:8 "For it is by grace that ye are saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:"
58In I Peter 1:2 we read, "Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father". Who are "the elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father"? Here again the reference is to persons, and not to their foreseen actions.
59No where does the Scripture speak of our actions being foreknown, but rather the persons are the ones that are foreknown. Scripture never speaks of repentance and faith as being foreseen or foreknown by God. But we do see throughout Scripture that God did know from all eternity that certain ones would repent and believe, yet nowhere does Scripture refer to an action as the object of God's "foreknowledge." Then, if the Word of God consistently refers to God's foreknowing of persons; then we should do as the Apostle Paul said in 2 Timothy 1:13 "hold fast the form of sound words".
60All these Scriptures that speak of the foreknowledge of God do not speak of his foreknowledge as a result of someone’s actions, but rather they point to the purpose and plan of God. They all speak of His own Sovereign decrees, plans and purpose.
62His "counsel, purpose or plan was the basis of His foreknowledge. Therefore you cannot read Romans 8:29 without first reading verse 28 which says, "all things work together for good to them who are the called according to His purpose." Thus God's "foreknowledge" is based upon His own purpose" or decree as we see also in Psalms 2:7, “ I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. “
63God foreknows what will be because He has decreed what shall be. He planned it that way. Therefore when men say God foreknew what your choice would do and therefore made His election or choice based on your choice they are not rightly dividing the Word of Truth. Rather they are not rightly dividing the Word but have reversed the order of Scripture, thus putting the cart before the horse.
64The truth is, He "foreknows" because "He has elected." This removes the cause of election from the person, and places it in God’s own sovereign will. God purposed in Himself to elect a certain people, not because of anything good in them or from them, either actual or foreseen, but solely out of His own good pleasure. As to why He chose the ones He did, we do not know, and can only say, "Even so, Father, for it seemed good in Thy sight."
66In II Timothy 2:13 we read If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself. This should make it clear that God does not base His election on what we choose or even what we believe, because it says if we believe not, yet He is Faithful. And I am thankful to God for His Faithfulness.
67Because I would not think it wrong to say we can all be thankful that He is much more faithful than we have been. Or let me say it this way. I am thankful that His being Faithful to me in no way a response for my faithfulness to him. If so I am sure I would have been aside a long time ago.
68But rather what He has divinely planned as we see that in Romans 8:29, that He has "Predestinated us to be conformed to the image of His son," therefore, God did not predestinate those whom he foreknew were already "conformed," but, on the contrary, those whom he "foreknew" He predestinated "to be conformed." Their conformity to Christ is not the cause, but the effect of God's foreknowledge and predestination.
69God did not elect any because He foresaw that they would believe, for the simple reason that no sinner can believe until God gives him a measure of faith to believe; just as no man sees until God gives him sight to see. In fact we receive the Holy Spirit of God that we might be able to see as He sees.
70Sight is God's gift, Believing is God’s gift, and seeing is the consequence of using the gift of faith. In fact we know according to 1 Corinthians 2 that no man can understand the things of God except the Spirit of God is in him.
711 Corinthians 2:11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God knows. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
72So how can man say, he made his own choice and that is why he is saved. Jesus said in, John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
74Ephesians 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: 4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him (in His presence): Then 5 In love Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
75Notice, we are chosen in Him way before anything that was created was created, and then out of His love he chooses a path to have us walk that will make the corrections to our birthed nature, in order to bring about a conformity to the image of the first born son in the way we conduct ourselves, and begin to share in or reflect His Holy nature.
76Ephesians 2:8,9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them...
78Believing is the consequence of my using His gift of faith. If it were true that God had elected certain ones to be saved because in due time they would believe, then that would make believing a meritorious act, and in that event the saved sinner would have ground for "boasting," which Scripture emphatically denies.
79God's Word plainly states that believing is not a meritorious act. In Matthew 13:10–17 we see that not everyone is ordained to see, nor are all ordained to understand. Therefore, we can plainly see by this that God elects some to Glory while others He does not choose.
80"10 And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? 11 He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. 12 For whosoever hath, (whosoever is of such a nature to be able to echo my Word) to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, (whosoever is not made to echo my Word) from him shall be taken away even that he hath.13 Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. 14 And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: 15 For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. 16 But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.
81Notice that Jesus Himself said "it is not given for some to see and understand, but to others it is given". The Scriptures tell us that we are able to believe because of Grace. If, then, we believe "through grace," there is absolutely nothing meritorious about "believing," and if nothing meritorious, it could not be the grounds or the cause which moved God to choose us. No; God's choice proceeds not from anything in us, or anything from us, but solely from His own sovereign pleasure. In Acts 13:48 we read, “as many as were ordained to eternal life believed”. Therefore we can conclude that believing depends upon having been ordained to eternal life.
83There it is, plain enough; election itself is of grace, and grace is unmerited favor, something for which we had no claim upon God whatsoever. It appears then that it is highly important for us to have a clear and Scriptural view of God's "foreknowledge".
85The popular idea of the foreknowledge of God is altogether inadequate. God not only knew the end from the beginning, but He planned it, and fixed it, and predestinated everything from the beginning. And, as cause stands to effect, so God's purpose is the ground of His predestination.
86If then you are a true Christian, you can only be so because God chose you in Christ before the foundation of the world as we see in Ephesians 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
87Now, "Proverbs 16:25 tells us "There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death." So knowing a man will always try to take the way that seems right to him, but it is guaranteed to be the way of death, then how can man be Holy and blameless in His sight on his own merit? and the answer is he can not.
88Therefore God sets our path towards this perfection as we see in Ephesians 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, 6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
89He chose you, not because He foresaw you were one who would believe, but He chose you simply because it pleased Him to choose you; and in fact He chose you regardless of your natural unbelief. And because this is so, then all glory, praise and honor, belongs alone to Him. You have no grounds for taking any credit to yourself. You have according to Acts 18:27 “believed through grace”, and your very election was "of grace"
90Romans 11:5 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. 6 And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.
91In closing let’s look at one more Scripture.
Let's turn to John 1:12. Here we find John tell us, “But as many as received him, to them gave hepower (exousia) to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:"
92Now, this scripture does not tell us that those that received Him, (that’s what they did, and because of what they did) they are the ones he then gives power to become sons. No, that is total heresy and espouses that man and his actions are greater than God and His Omniscience.
93Rather, this Scripture tells us that "the ones that he gave power to become sons are the only ones who are sons, and thus are the only ones able to make the right decision to receive him and their sonship."
94The Greek word "exousia" that was translated as the word “power”, but does not refer to miracle working power, but rather it refers to "having an ability" that has been given to them. Like having an attribute given through heredity. Thus we see, "to those that receive Him, can do so only because they are sons, and thus because they are sons, they have inherited an ability to understand and receive Him and His Word, and their relationship to Him as their Father, because only they are capable through Spiritual DNA to possess the same mind as their Father."
95This runs in the same context as what Jesus Himself said in Matthew 13, concerning those who "could hear and who could understand" because it was given to them to hear and understand verses those who "could not hear and nor could they understand" because it was not given for them to do so. So it all comes back to the Giver of gifts which is God.
96We appreciate when we hear a very talented singer or piano musician, and we appreciate that gift. But that does not make us look down upon those who are not so gifted. sometimes in a family one child is very gifted in some area while others may not be. Yet we inevitably look at that gift and can trace it back through the linage of one of the parents.
97Not everyone is given an ability to know and understand God. Only those that God gives this ability to are able to know and understand because it takes revelation to know and understand and revelation comes from God alone. And as we understand according to 1 Corinthians 2 that it takes having the Same Spirit that dwelt in God to know the things of God.