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"She shall extend her hand to the poor, and she shall reach out her hands to the needy"  Proverbs 31:20





FROM A BRANHAMITE TO AN ISRAELITE

By Keziyah Ysrayl




When I was born, I was given the name Bernadette by my parents, but my Hebrew name is Keziyah and I’m called ‘Kizzy’ for short. I’m the youngest of four daughters and I’m of the approximate 25% of Hebrew children who grew up with both parents in the home, which I count as a blessing.

            Despite our ignorance in knowing Truth, my family was a wholesome and decent one. I had a very strict Christian upbringing and my parents instilled in us strong Christian values.

            Until the early 1980s, my mother, Bobbie Jean and father, Jimmie Lee were your everyday southern Baptists. (all names have been changed for identity purposes) When I was 3 years old, my parents converted to a non-denominational Christian faith, my oldest sister, Melissa was 11, the second, Deanna was 7 and the third, Rose Lynn was 5. This non-denominational Christian religion was unlike most non-denominational Christian religions.

            This conversion would completely take over our lives. We had to stop celebrating Christmas, Halloween, Valentine’s Day and Easter, because they were of pagan origin.  But there was no real harm in celebrating holidays such as Thanksgiving and the 4th of July. We were taught that there was no real need to celebrate any holiday because that would be following tradition. As you can see, I was taught truths in this church that are not taught in most Christian churches.

We females had to stop wearing pants, (I still don’t wear pants only because I don’t like them) stop wearing earrings (I love me some earrings now though!) and had to even stop watching TV. So I grew up without having a television in the house. We would sometimes rent one to watch biblical and historical movies. But now, many of the followers own TVs including the pastor ever since 9/11 in order to stay up on the news. This change was really hard for my older sisters, but not for me. Since I was so young when this change came about, this way of life was all I knew.

            We began following the ministry of William Marrion Branham who had been dead for almost 2 decades at the time of my parents’ conversion. This dead man would become the dominant force in all of our lives. William Branham was born in 1909 and died 1965. It is said a bright light shone from above in the room on him when he was born.

            Even as a child, he recalled seeing visions and hearing a voice in a whirlwind, whirling in the trees above him, telling him of his future mission on earth. This would scare him out of his wits, being only a child. The voice would tell him not to drink, smoke or defile his body in any way because when he got older, there was a work for him to do.

            As an adolescent, Branham could never quite fit in with his peers because he didn't drink or smoke. When his friends or hard-drinker father teased him and called him a sissy for not drinking or smoking; in anger, he would seize the cigarette or bottle of whiskey to show them he could do it. However, before Branham could take a huff of smoke or a swig of whiskey, he would hear the same sound of the whirlwind in the trees he heard as a child, telling him not to drink or smoke. In shame and terror, he would drop the cigarette or bottle and flee.

            Also as a teenager, Branham was approached by an astrologer who told him that he was born under a special sign. This sign predicted a notable religious calling for him. Being a teenager, Branham dismissed such nonsense. But later in life, he would compare this incident to the damsel’s divination of ‘Paul’.

            Branham's parents were not the church going type, so he was not closely affiliated with a church as a child. However, Branham claimed he received the 'Holy Ghost' at a 'colored' church as a young man.

When Branham grew up, his ministry began in the Pentecostal faith, but he came to renounce Pentecostalism and other mainstream denominations. he made many prophecies and many came true, casted out demons, healed the blind and many other various diseases. He traveled many times around the world holding massive healing campaigns that drew hundreds of thousands of people in a single meeting. He even ministered heavily in South Africa saying that South Africa had a special place with him. There are even claims made by him and others that he raised the dead a few times, but I now know that was impossible because only Yah can raise the dead.

 In a campaign, Branham could tell a total stranger standing in line their full name, address and what their illness was or the illness of a family member the person wanted him to pray for. After that, he would either pray or just pronounce them healed and they would be healed. He didn’t only do this with people standing in line, he would also randomly pick out people sitting in the audience. He even picked out some of the few Hebrews who attended his meetings. Branham refused to exclude ‘coloreds’ from his meetings like many wanted him to. Nevertheless, Hebrews in the U.S. attended his meetings in very small numbers due to race relations during that time.

There’s footage of some of his campaigns and where he is interviewed, which I watched with my family and church many times. Many evangelists have imitated Branham trying to make people believe they have these spiritual gifts too. Some of these evangelists may really have gifts, but many of them are just straight up phony.

            Branham said he was many times visited by an angel who gave him instructions. Branham described this angel as olive-skinned (cream colored as we know), having shoulder length black hair and weighing about 200 pounds. 

During his healing campaigns, he would wait for the arrival of the ‘Holy Spirit’ and when it came he would say, “I take every spirit in here under my control for ‘God’s glory.” In these campaigns, many religious leaders such as Buddhists and Muslims around the world would come to withstand Branham by challenging his healing powers with their own. During these challenges, he could heal people in the hundreds while these many religious leaders couldn’t heal one. It was as if he could shut their power down. It’s obvious that Branham never tangled with a righteous servant of Yah, if so, the story would be altogether different.

This seems to parallel the show down on Mount Carmel between Eliyah’s Mighty One, Yah and Baal/Asherah, the god and goddess of the 850 false prophets. Satan’s world often runs parallel to Yah’s righteous world.

Branhamites are what his followers came to be called. The term ‘Branhamite’ was meant to be derogatory, but being called this did not offend us. We were proud of it because it associated us with William Branham, the greatest Prophet of all time. We believed Branham to be the Gentile prophet of the 20th century, the last of the seven angels talked about in Revelations and the fulfillment of the second coming of Jesus Christ. We exalted him above all the prophets in the Bible! Such blasphemy!

To back such claims, we kept and displayed photos of Branham with supernatural images. One shows him standing behind a podium with a halo or pillar of fire over his head. (See Photo 1 below) This picture hangs in the hall of religious art in Washington, DC. It’s said this picture was the only one that came out on the film while the rest didn’t. Among the rest that didn’t come out were photos of a preacher holding his fist under Branham’s nose; all these came out pitch black.

Another one is the Ring Cloud of Mystery that was published in the May 17, 1963 issue of Life magazine. This cloud appeared in the sky in Arizona. When looking at this picture, a voice told Branham to turn it to the right and when he did, he saw the outline and face of Jesus. Many Branhamites, particularly my former church, believed this cloud to be the return of Christ. They say this was the fulfillment of the biblical prophecy of Jesus returning in a cloud. (See Photo 2) Branham said the face he saw in this cloud was like the face of Jesus he saw in his. visions.

There is also a picture of fire appearing on the platform where Branham was preaching. The picture taken earlier shows the area as normal (See Photo 3) but in the second, there’ fire. (See Photo 4).  In the upper left this photo, you will see a ghostlike image of Branham from a different angel or was it Branham? The image can be seen more clearly in a hardcopy or enlarged photo in color.

In the house of a Branhamite, you will more than likely see such pictures hanging on their wall. I had some of them hanging on mine at one time. There’s a William Branham website: http://www.branham.org  and you can also Google his name and can find much information about him and his ministry. There are many Message churches all over the world.

            The church I attended was called the Tabernacle in the Wilderness, typing after the tabernacle that housed the Ark of the Covenant during and after the Exodus. Our church was a sect of the most extreme Branhamites. In the final years, we no longer had fellowship with other Message churches, due to our more extreme beliefs. To us, these churches didn’t exalt Branham enough and we took offense at that. We worshiped this man as ‘God’, but we would vehemently deny this if someone accused us of doing such. If Brother Branham (which is what we called him) said it, then that was final and it didn’t matter if there was no scripture to back it up. His well over 1000 sermons were printed out in books and we read these sermons more faithfully than the Bible. To us, his sermons were as valid as the Bible.

            To us, Bro. Branham could do or say no wrong. As far as we were concerned, he was ‘God’ in flesh and those who believed otherwise were doomed to eternal lost and death. We believed that Branhamites were the only true believers on earth and if you were not one, you were destined for the lake of fire. We were urged to witness and share this so-called truth to everyone we could, to bring them salvation, we thought.

            We as church members began to look on our pastor, John Robertson the same way we looked on Bro. Branham. Our pastor could do or say no wrong either. My former pastor was also a gentile. In the very beginning, his church had only gentile members, but many of them left when Hebrews started attending either in the late 60s or early 70s, not exactly sure. Bro. Robertson would find burned crosses in the churchyard left by the Klan because they were angry with him for inviting Hebrews. The church is located in a very racist area of S.C.

            So the church became half gentile and half Hebrew, but as time progressed, Hebrews became the majority. It comes as no surprised that we Hebrews were the most devout, zealous and fervent when it came to the Message, which is what Branhamites call Branham’s ministry. It reminds me of how Yahoshua’s ministry was called the Way.

The Hebrews were always the most servile and faithful to the pastor, playing the role of the typical ‘house nigger’. Many gentile pastors of other Message churches envied our pastor because he had so many Hebrew followers who worshiped the ground he walked on. These preachers wanted that for themselves, but never could get it. It was high on the agenda of many of them to take the Message to the ‘black’ people and deliver to them truth and salvation.

Most Message churches we fellowshipped with had few to no Hebrews. The gentiles of other Message churches saw us Hebrews as amusement because of our good singing and fervent way of worshiping; you know how Hebrews typically behave in worship. Therefore, some real entertainment would go on.

There were even accusations made against our pastor of sleeping around with the Hebrew women in his church, but that wasn’t true. Branham spoke out against interracial relationships. However, some Message churches allow it.

I’ve been told of a few incidents back in the 80s where gentile men in other Message churches made sexual advances and suggestive remarks toward the Hebrew women of my church, because they thought Hebrew women were sexually promiscuous. This should come as no surprise when you see the stereotype society has of us.

 Even in our own church that didn’t practice interracial marriage, the gentile men were more free and loose with the Hebrew women and made comments to them that should not have been made. These same gentile men would have gone into ‘lynching mode’ had the Hebrew men acted this way with their gentile women.

Bro. Robertson would say that no race was better than the other and strongly spoke out against racial prejudice, but a few of the statements in his sermons suggested that whites were better. Like Branham, he described Eve as being blonde with blue eyes and since ‘God’s creation was perfect, he created a perfect woman. They described Eve as looking like Marilyn Monroe, only more beautiful. To them, the perfect woman was one with blonde hair and blue eyes; to them, nothing was more beautiful.

I remember riding in the car from church with my parents one Sunday when I was in my early twenties or late teens and asking them would I still be black in the kingdom. They said that I would be, but my body would be made perfect and I wouldn’t have the flaws on them that I have now. So I was content with their answer.

The very next service on Wednesday, the pastor shattered my sense of contentment. He was reading from one of Branham’s sermons where he talked about his vision of seeing the people in the kingdom. In the book, Branham described the people as having blond, red, brown and black hair. So from this account, our pastor determined that there would be no black people in the kingdom. His exact words were, “Ain’t gon’ be no black people there.” He said this with a sickening smirk on his face, as if he was in the car with us and heard me ask this question. He said that in the kingdom, we would be changed to white, because it was the sun and soil that darkened our skin in the first place.

Straight up racism and Eurocentrism! I was crushed and crestfallen, because I didn’t want to be white! I wanted to stay as I am, black-skinned! His statement dealt a hard blow to my self-esteem. How could it not?!  In hearing this, it appeared that ‘God’ looked more favorably on ‘white’ people than ‘black’ people.

But that’s not all. To my deepest and profound shame, my cousin who also attended this church praised and rejoiced in response to what my pastor said; that’s how much she disliked being black-skinned. The pastor’s statement and my cousin’s enthusiastic response were all the gentiles in the church needed to reaffirm their so-called superiority. My family and I would have a good time talking about our cousin saying how stupid she was for out bursting like that. See what the curses have done to Israel? Now we all were brainwashed, but our cousin took the cake, icing, candles, and the plate.

These remarks always stuck with me and gnawed at me. They bothered my sisters too and we would discuss this many times. I would question my parents about the remarks our pastor made and their answer would be that our pastor grew up in a world where everything revolves around white and it’s normal for him to have these views. However, this answer did nothing to satisfy me.

As for slavery, my pastor would say that it was our own people who sold us out and it was for our own good because here, we were financially better off and ‘God’ allowed us to be brought over here to receive Christianity and the Message. Since we’re over here, we are free from the suffering and hardships in Africa, he would say. The Hebrews would shout and rejoice when he said that.

When reading a black history book or watching a black history movie, I would wonder how could a people who treated us so cruelly turn around and be our spiritual saviors? How could ‘God’s truth be in the hands of such a cruel, wicked, and oppressive people? Why did ‘black’ people still suffer so much misfortune, diseases, high crime, poverty etc.?

Also, all the prominent preachers in the Message were white/gentile men and seeing that most Jews are white, it was understood that all the biblical prophets were Caucasian. I would wonder why ‘God’ didn’t ever see fit to use a ‘black’ man.

 I began to believe that ‘black’ men were not trustworthy and that’s why ‘God’ couldn’t use them. After all, the only ‘black’ preachers I knew were either money loving, lustful, crooked, or all of the above. That’s why we ‘black’ people would relish the part in the Bible where Phillip baptized the Ethiopian. I remember my father calling this Ethiopian his brother. He was right, the Ethiopian was a Hebrew and so is my father, but daddy was ignorant of this knowledge at the time he said this.

But what puzzled me even more were Branham’s remarks about how more spiritual ‘colored people were than white people. He said that there were a thousand things about the ‘colored’ man that the white man can’t touch. So then, I felt that there had to be something special about us ‘black’ people. But why were we always followers if we were such a spiritual and gifted people? These questions were what lead me on my quest for truth, which I will get into later.

Living as a Branhamite isolated my sisters and me from many social events and activities most children enjoyed. Most activities my parents considered worldly and sinful. We didn’t skate, swim, go to the county fairs or listen to any secular music. We were not allowed to date guys outside of our faith, to avoid getting unequally yoked. But my parents’ rules became less rigid by the time I became an adolescent. We didn’t have many close school friends because we couldn’t relate to them due to our ignorance of popular culture.

We sisters mostly socialized among ourselves and with the other children in our church who shared the same beliefs. I didn’t like school because I was often singled out and teased by other students. Even by my own sisters, I was singled out and often called the oddball of the four, even though we were very close. Actually, my family was and still is more bonded than most families.

I remember one time in preschool, the teacher of my class was away and the aide was left in charge. This school was predominately Hebrew and all of the teachers and aides were Hebrews. One particular morning, I didn’t finish my breakfast when the other kids did and couldn’t join them in play until I finish. Being a child, I became very upset because I couldn’t play. Seeing I was upset, the aide began taunting me chanting, “Crybaby! Crybaby!” and the whole class followed suit. I sat weeping with tears and snot dripping off my face into my tray of grits and sausage amid these taunts and chants. If it was just the kids teasing me, I could’ve run to the aide to make them stop. But who could I run to when it was the aide herself doing the teasing?!  For some reason, this aide had a major pick with me. Not long after this, my mother took me out of that school.

            Due to this strict and rigid life, my oldest sister started to rebel. She got pregnant at the age of 17 from a boy at school, I was 8 then. My parents were beyond devastated, especially since the Message taught us to be ladies and to remain virgins until we married.

When the church learned of my sister’s pregnancy, some of the Hebrews gloated. There was something about my family that stood out from the other Hebrews in the church. Some of the Hebrews took this as us being stuck-up and arrogant. On the contrary, we are the most humble of people who just carry ourselves with dignity and pride. One church member told Melissa that the ‘white’ people in the church didn’t trash and look down on us as they did the other ‘black’ people in the church.

However, my sister was not the first girl in the church to get pregnant and she was definitely not the last. All of these girls were Hebrews and the guys who impregnated them were all outside the faith. My mother was a child born out of wedlock and hated the fact that her daughter was bringing forth an out of wedlock child. My sister’s pregnancy made my mother paranoid concerning us younger three, thankfully, we never got pregnant. Some serious drama would go on in our house, which I will elaborate on shortly.

Not only did mother’s hurt made me determined not to get pregnant, but hearing my niece’s shrill cries at night and while riding along in the car. In the beginning, it was fun having a baby in the house because I loved playing with babies. But having one in the house continually became a major bother and distraction for me. To make matters worse, my oldest sister got pregnant again a few years later. When I learned of it, I wanted to run away. Now remember I was only a kid then, so don’t brand me as a baby-hater!

Several years later, Deanna started to rebel and snuck around with guys outside of the faith. With these two sisters, I witnessed many catfights and shouting matches they had with our mother and even each other. My Deanna would start fights with Melissa, angry with her for rebelling; shortly afterward, she started rebelling herself.

I guess you’re wondering, where was our daddy in the midst of all this. Some of these incidents occurred while he was working, but would often give his voice and play the referee when he was around. To be honest, I still don’t think daddy played a strong enough role in these incidents. He did the best he could, but being ignorant to Truth, daddy couldn’t be the strong, righteous Hebrew father/husband to properly rule and guide his family. Not having the proper guidance, our home would sometimes spiral out of control.

            Daddy was also the only male in the house; he stayed outside much of the time to escape a house full of us loud and bickering females. Hebrew women in this Babylonian mindset are a force to be reckoned with and Hebrew men in this same mindset lack the wisdom and strength to deal with them. In result, the men just stay out of the way and let the women do as they see fit.

Don’t think that my mother bossed my father around because she didn’t. The Message was hard on women and taught that the man was the head and the woman to follow. But living under the curses in Babylon, the male and female roles had a way of reversing.

            My third sister never went through an outright rebellious stage. But she’s now going through a mid-life crisis some women go thorough while in their 30s. We can’t escape it; we all undergo some kind of crisis at some point in life.

I went through my rebellious stage between the ages of 10-13, but it didn’t involve guys. I would talk back; defy my mother, which earned me many beatings. During one or two of such beatings, I fought her back. I would also be hateful towards my niece and nephew. However, I was sometimes provoked because my niece and nephew were under the influence of my older sisters and they teased me, knowing I could easily get upset. That’s older siblings for you.

            Throughout my entire childhood, I was very emotional, impulsive and outspoken. I must say that I honestly inherited this emotional way from my father. Being this way didn’t help me out in school either; it earned me further teasing by classmates and my sisters. I would get into fusses and even a few fights both at school and at home. I was already singled out for being different and these characteristics certainly didn’t improve my lot.

When I reached 4th grade I was taken out of school and home-schooled by my mother until high school, with the exception of 6th grade. Under her guidance, I slowly and painstakingly acquired the discipline of self-control and of being slow to speak and act out. When I returned to public school, I was a different person. But I was still singled out by students and some of the girls had a pick with me. Now that I had more self-control, I could simply tell them off and set them straight without any melodrama; most times I just ignored them. I will always be grateful to my mother for instilling such qualities in me.

            Not all the time did these students make fun of my strangeness because they would comment on how I spoke. Judging from how I spoke, they didn’t think I was from the area, but I would assure them that I was born, bred and raised right here in South Carolina. I also received good responses from the teachers, especially the gentiles. As a young adult, I was well behaved, the top 10% of my class and wasn’t boy-crazy. Many teachers noticed this about me and took a liking to me.

            Getting back to the turmoil in the house, I was determined never to get sexually involved with a man outside of the faith and outside of marriage, seeing the chaos and turmoil it brought to our once peaceful home. I was at the point where I was afraid to associate with boys, especially at school. Some of the Hebrews boys and girls in our church dated each other; including my two oldest sisters, but for some reason none of these relationships ever materialized into marriage. They would always separate at some point and get involved with girls and guys outside of the faith

After the countless talks my mother gave us sisters and listening to the conversations between my mother, grandmother and other Hebrew women, I became aware of the slick games guys played to get into our panties and then brag about it to their buddies. So I stayed clear of guys for the most part.

Even to this day and I’m 29 years old, I’ve never been in a serious relationship with a guy. However, the few guys I’ve briefly dated all told me that there was something different and rare about me, even as a Christian. Even though these guys were very attracted to me, it was as if there was an invisible barrier between us. We tried to breach this barrier, but couldn’t; it was very frustrating. That’s why the relationships never could take off. Several days ago, Yah has revealed to me what that barrier was, but I prefer to keep that revelation to myself.

None of these guys were Branhamites, because by the time I came of age, most of the young people had left the church, including my oldest sister. However, they almost never converted to a different faith after leaving. Nearly all of them still believe the Message to be the ultimate truth and will hotly defend it.  Most of them left only because of the rigid life style.

We three sisters were the only young people in our age group left in this church. So the pickings of eligible Hebrew men in the church were slim to none. This explains why my parents relaxed the dating rules. But my failure in getting seriously involved with a man was for the best, now that I’m in the Truth, Yah can lead me to a righteous, Yah fearing man.

Getting back to William Branham, we were constantly reminded of all the miracles he performed, read the sermons he preached, the prophecies he made concerning the end-time, the visions he seen and the different dimensions he’d entered.

Branham was a big admirer of Abraham Lincoln and it’s remarkable to see how much their lives parallel each other. Check this out:

Abraham Lincoln

William Marrion Branham

First and last name has seven letters

First, middle and last name has seven letters

Born 1809

Born 1909

Grew up in a log cabin in Kentucky

Grew up in a log cabin in Kentucky

Issued Emancipation Proclamation to free slaves in 1863 which earned him both strong love and strong hate

Preached a series of sermons in 1963 interpreting the 7 Seven Seals in Revelation claiming the Lamb of ‘God’ revealed the mystery of the seals to him. This act both gained and costed him popularity.

Assassinated in 1865

Killed in a car accident in 1965

Branham’s ministry also included many pyramids and pyramid symbols. On his grave is a giant white pyramid with an eagle on top. (See Photo 5) While visiting Sabino Canyon in Arizona, which was where he moved, he saw many visions there. During one of his visits, he said he was caught up in a constellation of 7 angels flying in the sky. The angels flew in the form of a pyramid with one on top and three on each side.

Another time in this same canyon, Branham said a great whirlwind came and blasted rocks off the mountain and the rocks that blasted off the mountain were all shaped like triangles and pyramids. I can attest to this because I visited the canyon along with several other churches back in 1989 and saw this with my own eyes. Every rock I saw and picked up had a triangular or pyramid shape. We even brought some of the rocks back home with us.

            There’s no doubt that he was a very gifted man, but his supernatural abilities should not override the fact that much of his doctrine was unscriptural.

For example, he taught that Eve had sex with a creature called the Serpent from another lineage of creatures ‘God’ created. Outwardly, these creatures looked no different from Adam and Eve, except they didn’t have a soul, making them literally animals. This man/animal was described as being very tall and far more handsome than Adam. He was also said to be extremely wise and intelligent, which is why he’s called Serpent. Satan entered this man, he taught Eve forbidden things and seduced her, and she got pregnant with Cain. So we were taught that Cain was not Adam’s son. After seducing Eve, ‘God’ cursed this man by changing him into a snake.

Branhamites explain away the passage that states Adam knowing Eve, the conception and the bringing forth of Cain and Abel by stating that the scriptures say Eve only conceived one time from Adam. When Adam realized what Eve done, he quickly had sex with her to plant his righteous seed in her womb before it closed. If Adam had not of done this, Eve would’ve been cursed with the Serpent. Branham said that a woman’s womb is sealed after conception, permitting no entrance of other sperm.

However, in some rare cases, sperm can enter the womb for up to 48 hours after conception. Branham said science determined this with a strange case in Texas where a white woman had sex with her husband that night and had sex with a ‘colored’ man that next day. The woman became pregnant with twins, one coming out white and the other biracial and her husband refused to claim the biracial child.

So like this rare case, Eve had sex with the Serpent and then with Adam her husband several hours later which resulted in twins, Cain the son of the Serpent and Abel, the son of Adam.

Branham taught that after murdering Abel, Cain went to the land of Nod and married his half sister, the daughter of his cursed father, the Serpent.

Branhamites claim that the mystery of the Serpent had been hidden a long time, but ‘God’ appointed Bro. Branham to rediscover this mystery.

Branham also dismissed the Book of Enoch as false and taught that it was not fallen angels that had sex with human women, but the sons of Adam. He stated that the sons of God were the lineage of Adam and the daughters of men were Cain daughters. Since Cain’s lineage was of the Serpent, it was wicked and ‘God’ didn’t want Adam’s descendants marrying and interbreeding with them.

As a member of the Tabernacle in the Wilderness, I was indoctrinated with these unscriptural teachings. What entrapped me was the thought that there was no way a man who performed such miracles as Branham could be teaching falsehood and be used by Satan. Believe me, I wasn’t the only one ensnared, many still are, including my own family. We make the mistake of underestimating the power of Satan. Satan can also perform great miracles, signs, wonders and appear to be an angel of light to deceive many.

            Branham always tried to visit the land of Israel and take his ministry there but never could do so. After traveling so many times around the world, Israel was one of the few places Branham never visited. He wanted to introduce the Messiah to the Jews over there. As you know, Jews are called the rejectors and crucifiers of Christ and it’s the goal of many Christians to redeem them to Christ. Branham was no different. One time he was within 20 minutes of boarding a plane destined for Israel when something told him not now because the cup of the iniquities of the Gentiles is not yet full. So he boarded a plane to Cairo, Egypt instead.

Branhamites believed Branham was the spirit of Elijah making another appearance on Earth. They would often quote Malachi 4:5 saying that Elijah or at least his spirit is prophesied to make several visits to earth.  Since the Message teaches that the two witnesses, mentioned in Revelations 11: 3 were to be Moses and Elijah, it made sense that ‘God’ didn’t let Bro. Branham go to Israel, it wasn’t time for him to play that role. This was there explanation.

To further support their claim about Branham going to Israel when he/the spirit of Elijah makes yet another visit to Earth, they would use Branham’s conversation he had with a Jew (Ashkenazi) in New York. In the conversation, this Jewish rabbi confronted Branham about trying to divide ‘God ‘ into three and handing it to a Jew because they don’t believe such nonsense. Branham defended himself and said that he wasn’t doing that. Branham went on to ask the Jew some questions concerning the return of the Messiah. The Jew answered Branham in a way that indicated he knew and believed in the New Testament; as you know; most Jews don’t deal with the ‘New Testament’. But before Branham could go any further with the Jew, the Jew cut Branham off and said he would hear him sometime later.

Branhamites say this means that it wasn’t time for the Jews to receive “Christ”. They will receive ‘Christ’ in their ‘homeland’ Israel when the two witnesses come to Israel. As I stated before, they believe Branham/the spirit of Elijah to be one of the witnesses.

As for UFOs, Branham called them flying saucers, which was what they were called in those times. He talked about how people were troubled about these flying objects and there appearing over the Pentagon. He called these flying saucers investigating judgment angels. Hmmm!

Many of Branham followers would all have the same dream about flying saucers turning out to be Branham riding on a horse at lighting speed, usually going west. But they said the Branham in their dreams were different from the one they knew. In their dreams, Branham would say “I will ride this trail again!” Also in the dreams, Branham talked differently and had a very authoritative manner. In life, Branham was a simple Kentuckian, who had limited education and spoke less than good English. From a boy, Branham was drawn to the West. They also had many dreams about Branham with great white pyramids.

Branham would interpret their dream to be him going west to spread his ministry. Several years before his death, he left his church in Jeffersonville, IN in the hands of trusted brother and moved to Arizona. However, it was never known of him doing a major work out there, other than seeing all those visions and supernatural experiences in Sabino Canyon. I believe those dreams were an indication of a future happening in the end-time.

During his ministry, Branham was supported by very wealthy and distinguished gentile men and was closely associated with the Full Gospel Business Men Fellowship organization. However, Branham never became wealthy because of his refusal in changing his stand on how women should conduct themselves and his blasting of denominational churches.  However, Branham’s children have prospered tremendously by promoting his ministry after his death.

They promised him great wealth, popularity provided he compromise just a little, but he never would. So shortly before he died, these elite groups of distinguished men abandoned him like a failed project.

With that being said, when looking at pictures and footage of Branham I sometimes see men around him having the look of CIA agents. Those agents have a certain look about them with the black suits and all. I told Rose Lynn about this and she thought the same thing about those men who would be hovering around Branham.

Where Branham wanted to use his gift to help people, the rich and powerful wanted to use it for a more selfish, darker and more sinister purpose.

I still yet have to learn William Branham’s entire significance. He was more than just the average ‘Joe’ spreading the deception of Christianity. One must admit this man had a notable and special role in this thing.

 I was indoctrinated with this so-called wisdom and revelations of Branham 3 times a week. This is not counting the times between where we listened to either Branham’s or Robertson audios and read the sermons at home.  Most of the Hebrews lived about 45 minutes away from the church, but driving this distance to hear this great ‘Truth’ and be one of the chosen few in the kingdom was worth every minute and every drop of gas, we thought.

I was very much convinced that I was in Truth and would by no means leave it. As teenager I loved going to church to hear the ‘Word’ and hoped someday I would break through and be born again. As much as I prayed and studied the Message, the moment never happened. When the spirit got high in church or in a prayer meeting, I would try to get in this spirit with everyone else.

I was indoctrinated to believe the Message was the only Truth and I counted myself happy and blessed. But even with this sense of spiritual security, there was an emptiness deep down inside of my heart that I just couldn’t fill. Was this really the real Truth? This nagging question would be always in the back of my mind. It was terrifying because I was afraid of being eternally lost if I didn’t truly believe.

What magnified these doubts were the failing of the Message to give a purpose for the suffering of my people. Branham and Robertson spoke against racial prejudice, how wrong slavery was and how Martin Luther King was misleading his people, (True!) but they failed to offer a real solution. Many times, they blasted the U.S. for how it mistreated the Indians, (Branham was part Native American) saying how it was a stain on the American flag. They would condemn the mistreatment of ‘blacks’ but not with the same passion. Something was wrong with this picture. Didn’t the ‘blacks’suffer just as much and even more so than the Native Americans?

It wasn’t until about a few years ago, when I seriously started praying about the condition of my people. What was the purpose for all of our suffering, misfortune and why our ‘black’ men were in such a bad state? I also prayed to ‘God’ on why my pastor said the things he said about ‘black’ people.

By this time, my pastor’s health was in a major decline. For nine years, he had tended to an invalid wife who died in 2006. She had an aneurysm in 1997 and never fully recovered, even though the pastor and the church fervently prayed and believed she would. Having so many Hebrew followers didn’t make matters better for him either. Hebrews are a special people and a dramatic people who need a special leader well equipped to handle them.  All of these factors took a major toll on Robertson’s mental health. Shortly before his wife’s death, he began to mentally fall apart.

            So even if I asked him about his racial statements, he would not be in the right mind to give a sensible answer. I had opportunities to ask him before his breakdown but never mustered the nerve to do so. I was shy and timid around this ‘righteous’ man and was afraid he would see all the sins and faults I had in my heart. My pastor had these piercing blue eyes that seemed to stare right through a person. The Hebrew members would say that our pastor had those eagle eyes of wisdom and discernment. So that explains why I never approached him about this. I was still in the mindset of believing my pastor could say no wrong and that the Message had all the answers. But now with him being sick, who could I go to? I’d already asked my parents and their answers didn’t satisfy me.

It was very sad and embarrassing hearing the pastor ramble behind the pulpit and preach sermons that had no focus and say things that made no sense. In his heyday, Robertson was a strong and fiery preacher and this was the Bro. Robertson we were used to.  In the beginning, we didn’t know he was suffering from dementia, but some of us acknowledged that something was seriously wrong with him. However, we had many members, especially Hebrews who were in serious denial. No matter how incoherent the pastor was, they would insist nothing was wrong with him and that ‘God’ was speaking through him just the same.

But when his sickness could no longer be overlooked, the pastor’s family brought in another gentile man, Brother Simms to preach around early spring of 2007. Due to this change, the church underwent a major upset. We were a lost and wretched people during this time, because Bro. Robertson, our rock had crumbled to sand before our eyes.  Many of us were not fond of Simms. This man visited our church several times awhile back and he had a very aggressive and abrasive personality.

In his right mind, our pastor never cared for Simms and we were puzzled thinking; of all people, why in the world would the pastor’s family choose him?! Sadly, the family took advantage of the pastor’s weak state of mind, telling us the pastor told them to get Simms. Many of us didn’t buy this claim because we knew what our pastor thought of Simms before his illness and never heard him speak too well of him even when sick. Simms would be the last preacher our pastor would choose to take over his church.

We didn’t see why this preacher was needed because there was a longtime member, Brother Osmond who would sometimes preach in place of the pastor. But the pastor’s family had a big falling out with Bro. Osmond because he refused to let them control him and stopped him from preaching in church. So to further spite Osmond, they brought in Simms who was on bad terms with Osmond due to some earlier confrontation.

The short time we sat under Bro. Simms was the pits! Since he knew some of us didn’t care for him, he would deliberately say things to gouge us and make us upset. Bro. Osmond was his prime target due to a previous confrontation they had. I remember wanting to jump up and throw something at him. At times when I couldn’t take anymore, I would just get up and storm out of the church right in the middle of his preaching. This man drove me to behave out of character and disrespectfully.

The church was divided between opinions where you had the Simms supporters, the Osmond supporters and the ones who just wanted remain loyal to the Tabernacle in the Wilderness whether or not it had a pastor. We Hebrews were divided against each other, all fighting and warring. Come to find out, Simms had a long history of breaking up churches. You wouldn’t believe all the drama that went on. Church was no longer the safe haven where we’d go to temporarily escape life’s troubles and worries.

Bro. Simms thought my daddy loved him, but he was fooled because my daddy was just showing him a pleasant face. He wanted my father in his corner really bad, because my daddy, the church song-leader was looked up to by most of the members. With daddy in his corner, Simms knew that the majority would follow my father’s lead. To butter daddy up, Simms and his wife would invite daddy and momma over for fish fries and Simms wife would give momma things. Simms thought he was on the golden road to receiving the coveted prize, Robertson’s kingdom where Hebrews would serve him and worship the ground he walked on. NOT!!!

When Simms found out my daddy didn’t care for him either and was hosting house meetings where Osmond preached, Simms turned on my father like a mad dog.  He was furious because he saw that he had been played!

For me, the straw that broke the camel’s back was when my daddy approached the platform to lead songs as usual and Simms intercepted him ordering my daddy to have a seat. Showing the proper ‘Christian’ spirit, my father humbly and peacefully backed down. Then right on the spot, Simms ordered another Hebrew member to lead songs in my daddy’s place. This particular Hebrew brother and his wife always competed with my father and mother, so this was a real pleasure for them. That’s when I lost it; I wanted to do this man some serious harm for humiliating my father like that in front of the whole church!

After storming out, I began screaming and ranting like a maniac, screaming out all my rage and indignation against Simms, screaming out the pain of seeing my father humiliated by this awful man and screaming out the pain of being caught between the two worlds of Yah and God! By this time, I’d discovered the Hebrew Israelite website months before.

That November night in 2007, I made my ultimate decision to leave and never return, my parents and many others made their decision to leave for good after attending a few more services. Some, like Bro. Osmond had already left even before I did. Before that night, I would say I’m not going back, but my parents would always talk me into returning saying that church was my post of duty and that we had to endure Simms until there was a better option. We were actually hoping Robertson would miraculously recover and put an end to all this madness. But such hopes were gradually fading. We, the Bro. Osmond supporters started looking to Bro. Osmond for guidance. We finally saw that there was nothing for us at the Tabernacle in the Wilderness anymore.

After 40 years, the Tabernacle in the Wilderness changed, never to be as it was. In late December 2007, those of us that left, which was a little over half, joined forces with Bro. Osmond, another gentile and established a new church, the Spoken Word Tabernacle. Bro. Osmond became a Robertson Jr., therefore repeating the cycle. We saw Bro. Robertson as the ‘Moses’ figure who died and Bro. Osmond as the ‘Joshua’ who took up where Robertson left off, leading us out of the Wilderness and into the Promised Land.

            However, I never got caught up in Bro. Osmond in the same way I did with Robertson, because by now, I was constantly visiting the IH website and was steadily learning about Yah and Yahoshua. But I was still trying to hold onto both worlds.

            We found out that shortly after we left, Bro. Simms also left because those who left were the ones he really wanted. So he abandoned his supporters, throwing them to the wolves. They still attend the old church to listen to audios of either Robertson or Branham. Most recently, several preachers have been there visiting.

            Now I’m going to back up and tell how I actually discovered this Truth.  As I said before, questions concerning my people ate away at my heart and I fervently began to search and pray. Although I prayed to ‘God’ because I didn’t know the name of the true Creator, it was Yah who answered my prayers. Yah is merciful and He knew I was ignorant, but He saw that I desired to know.

It was late June of 2007 when I discovered the article, Ruddy. At that time, I was also having serious questions about two other things. How could Jews be ‘God’s’ chosen people when I saw nothing special or set-apart about them and do the words, ‘ruddy’ and ‘red’ used to describe Esau and David prove they were white? It bothered me when I saw in the news how the Jews mistreated the Palestinians in Israel. After finding this first article, I searched more and found another article, Edomites and Khazars . So these articles really captured my attention.

            Soon after finding the first two, I found the article,  Physical Appearance of the Children of Israel. The strange thing about this is I didn’t know at first these articles were part of the same site because my search terms only pulled up the links to the articles, not the website. Now I was made aware of the strong evidence that proved the Israelites were black and that the Jews, both Ashkenazi and Sephardic were really not the chosen people. Wow! This was a major shock to a Eurocentric programmed mind.

But it wasn’t until July, the seventh month in 2007, when I became fully aware that these articles were part of one website. After discovering the collective site, it began to hit home that we, the lowly African Americans were Israel, the chosen people!  The Israelites were not just some distant blacks lost somewhere in Africa, with no real connection to black Americans. The article that really shook me was none other than the Curses!! Deuteronomy 28 and Leviticus 26 fitted us African Americans to a tee and this knowledge left me speechless! I knew right then that my life would never ever be the same. I remembered crying and rejoicing. I would go to bed rejoicing and get up rejoicing, shouting and dancing through the house. This knowledge lifted a tremendous weight from my heart and mind and answered the questions that had plagued me for so long. Finally my prayers were answered.

So now, I guess you’re wondering why I acted such a fool in church after being so overjoyed in receiving the knowledge of my Hebrewism.  Since I relished the articles on the website, why didn’t I just up and leave the madness and turn to this newly found discovery? As the saying goes, be careful what you wish or pray for, because I got just that. Remember, I was only praying for answers regarding my race, not to have my safe little glass cage shattered. I wanted to stay in my cage, because I was warm and comfortable there. So when my prayers were answered, I thought that was all there was to it. But little did I know all what my answered prayers would entail until I started delving deeper and deeper into the website. It would require tremendous sacrifices that caused me much heartache in the months to come.

Even though the articles were very enlightening, it was the audio lessons that really opened my eyes to how wickedly I was living. To be honest, I didn’t agree with everything on the site right off. For example, I didn’t agree with keeping the law. I didn’t want to give up my crab legs and shrimp, which were my absolute favorite. But listening to those audios made me realize the error of my ways and I repented.

I enthusiastically shared this discovery with my family. To give them credit, they’re interested, but are afraid to leave that comfort zone. It’s very remarkable that they are as receptive as they are being they’re so indoctrinated. My father has pretty much read every article on the site, and was very excited about this Truth at one time, so he’s aware of this. He even went as far as phoning Brother ObadiYah, but they kept missing each other. I believe they will meet in Yah’s own good time.

            I remember one morning after watching the Physical Appearance DVD, my father made an attempt to close out his prayer in Yah’s name. Now I know it’s in Yahoshua’s name, but at least he was making an attempt with the little he knew. My father loved to witness and he would sometimes share what little he knew about our Hebrew Heritage with family and friends. It was refreshing seeing him witness about something other than the Message. Daddy told me he always felt he had a special calling. It was a time when he and I would enthusiastically discuss the articles. I was more advanced by this time, so I had to keep the conversations on his level.

Unfortunately, Satan saw he was about to lose a treasured vessel and he tightened the chains on my father. Right after that, my father said he had a call to preach and started going around preaching the Message! I’m seriously praying for my father, the rest of my family and even the members of both the old and new church. I keep them all in prayer because I still love them and hope at least a few come to the Light.

            When I started attending the new church in December 2007, I began writing letters to Brother Obadiyah and sending donations of money and paper. By now I was getting stronger and built up the courage to contact Brother ObadiYah. The letters I got back were very warm and encouraging. I fervently prayed for Yah to lead me in what to do. Should I continue attending church or should I leave, I would ask. In one of the letters, ObadiYah said that it would get harder and harder for me to stay around my church group and that’s exactly what was happening.

It hurt when I saw that I was on the brink of making yet another exodus so soon after making the previous one. The new church was our haven from the ugly turmoil we went through in the old church. How could I rock the boat and shatter our new haven of peace and harmony by leaving?

While listening to Osmond and listening to Yah’s Word, I really began to see how unscriptural the Message really was. I began to sit silent and glum, wearing the same expression I wore while enduring Simms. Osmond found my sudden change in behavior as very strange because I always responded enthusiastically to him before and was one of his main supporters during the big mess at the old church.

A few weeks before I left the new church, I had a very disturbing dream. I was home and looked outside to see three men coming toward my house. The men were Osmond, Simms and another male member of the new church; all three are gentiles. This sight was strange, because Bro. Osmond and Bro. Simms didn’t like each other, so why were they together? I could see they were all in one accord.

Simms was definitely the leader of the group while the two passively followed his lead. They came and stood at my door with Bro. Simms in front, Bro. Osmond and the other brother standing behind him, forming a sort of triangle. The same triangular formation marching armies take to penetrate the enemy in order to divide and defeat them. Since I knew them, I reached to open the door, thinking they were only coming to visit. But before I could open the door, Bro. Simms began pounding on the door and yelling, “Open this door!” “Open this door now!” He was about to pound the door in when I heard my father’s voice inside my head urgently telling me, “Bern, don’t open that door, keep that door closed!” (‘Bern’ is the abbreviated version of my gentile name)

Therefore, that is when I ran to the phone and called the cops. They were gone by the time the cops arrived. The cops did not arrive in their usual squad cars or uniforms but came in vehicles that looked liked jeeps and topless cars. In the dream, I do not recall the cops actually speaking with me. They just milled around in their jeeps in front my house, not taking this seriously. My family was at the house by the time the cops arrived, because I was alone in the house before. In fact, I live alone. I remember standing on the porch with my family around me and I knew they all had my back. We all stood on the porch together watching these suppose to be cops, waiting for them to do their job. I still do not have the interpretation of this dream, but hope someone gifted with dream interpretation provide me with it someday.

This dream puzzled me, because in reality, Osmond, my father and the other gentile brother are the ones in one accord, not the other way around.

I got to the place where I would cry before going to church, knowing I was taking part in paganism. I felt that something had to give or I would have a major meltdown. However, be assured I was calling on the name of Yah all the time. Yah had already given me the answer, but it was up to me to accept it. Once I accepted it, I quietly made my exit; this was in early April 2008

            Rose Lynn told me that Bro. Osmond has sometimes mentioned me while preaching and the other members are wondering about me. They are very fond of me because I was more faithful than all of my sisters when it came to attending church and they enjoyed my singing. In the beginning, he would talk about how much he missed me and the precious flower I was. Now he speaks harshly against me and says I’m in a mess! In the beginning, he didn’t know I left his church to become a Hebrew Israelite. When my sister told me this, I just laughed about it.

            Rose Lynn is also getting fed up with church and skips a lot. My sister plays the music, so her absence really shows up. She also played music at the old church for many years and Simms started throwing slams at her and eventually fixed it so she could no longer play. Osmond sees my sister’s lack of enthusiasm and is starting to throw slams at her almost in the same manner as Simms. So my sister is definitely in my prayers.

It’s now my heart’s desire to continue to grow in Yah’s Truth and increase in understanding. It’s also my prayer to learn to trust my sisters and brothers who are in this Truth and open up to them. After so many years of living in an isolated world, I find it difficult to let others in. But I must realize that those who do Yah’s will are more of my family than my genetic relatives.

I have come to accept the fact that I was part of a cult, for the lack of a better word. A cult, like the one I was in is very different from mainstream religions because it has a special way of breaking down the human mind. When former cult members enter into this Truth, they typically have to undergo far more deprogramming than most former worshipers of mainstream religions. That’s why I don’t feel led to write my family off, it just might take them a little longer. I see that Yah is slowly dealing with them.

Little did I know that Yah’s hand was upon me from the womb. During all those years in darkness and deception, Yah was molding, fashioning and guiding me to His marvelous Light and Truth.

            Yah had mercy on me, a disobedient child and changed me from a Branhamite to the Hebrew Israelite I am today. HalleluYah!!!!

 

I know this testimony was a long one, but this was on my heart for awhile and I had to get it all out. Shalom.

                                         

       

 
 
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