by Owen Jorgensen
“Somewhere in the world, a sincere teenager is searching for answers to questions like: Does God really exist? If so, who is He? And where is He? And is this God interested in my life? To you, young searcher, this book is dedicated… For so once was I.”
“I structured this biography chronologically, feeling that much insight could be gained by watching William Branham’s life unfold step by step. Many biographers remain ever-present in their text, analyzing and explaining the future significance of every event they describe. I chose not to do this, letting the meaning of each event remain a mystery until that point in the story when William Branham himself learned its significance. This allows the reader to follow his life as he lived it, to understand the development of his character, and to appreciate his struggle to comprehend the meaning of his peculiar life.” —Owen Jorgensen
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Book 1: The Boy and His Deprivation
From the minute he was born, William Branham was set apart from the ordinary. Plagued by poverty and rejection, he became a nervous child. Unusual things kept happening to him, mystifying and spiritual things that scared him. He did not start thinking about God until he was 14 when he nearly lost both legs in a shotgun accident. As he lay dying in a pool of blood, he saw a terrifying vision of hell. He saw himself falling constantly deeper into that region of lost and drifting souls. He cried out to God for mercy and miraculously was given a second chance—a chance which later he almost failed to grasp.
Book 2: The Young Man and His Desperation
As a young pastor, William Branham struggled to understand his peculiar life. Why was he the only minister in town who saw visions? When God first called him into nationwide evangelism in 1936, he refused, only to pay dearly for his mistake by losing his wife and daughter to tuberculosis. The visions continued. Ministers told him that these visions came from Satan. Desperation finally drove him to seek God in the wilderness, where he came face to face with a supernatural being. The angel gave him a commission from God to take a gift of Divine healing to the peoples of the world. When William Branham questioned whether the people would believe an angel had really met him, the angel said he would be given two supernatural signs to prove his calling. Then they would have to believe. And believe they did!
Book 3: The Man and His Commission
Soon after the angel visited William Branham and told him he was ordained to take a gift of healing to the peoples of the world, the first sign appeared—a physical reaction in his hand that happened only when he touched the hand of someone suffering from a germ-caused disease. Within two months of his commission, William Branham’s extraordinary gift had gained national attention. People by the thousands flocked to his meetings, where he preached salvation and Divine healing in the name of Jesus Christ. Miracles abounded. The world had not seen anything like it since the days when Jesus walked through Galilee, casting out demons and healing all who were sick and afflicted. Even so, some people still questioned whether an angel had really met this humble man. Then the second sign appeared...and they had to believe!
Book 4: The Evangelist and His Acclamation
William Branham is a paradox in modern history. Beginning in 1946 his ministry leaped from obscurity to gain national attention in less than six months, and in the process it sparked a worldwide faith-healing revival. He accomplished this feat with the help of a unique gift—a supernatural sign that startled people into taking notice. Soon Christians around the world were noticing. Between 1951 and 1954 William Branham conducted the largest Christian meetings in history up to that time—around 300,000 people at one meeting in Bombay, India. The demand for his services in America and abroad seemed insatiable. But William Branham wasn’t satisfied. Something seemed wrong. For a long time he didn’t know what it was, but by the end of 1954 he knew. His ministry would have to change.
Book 5: The Teacher and His Rejection
William Branham’s international ministry had three main stages. First, he discerned diseases through a supernatural sign in his hand. Later, visions allowed him to discern sickness and more. Between 1946 and 1954, over 500,000 people accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior because of his preaching—and there was no way to estimate how many millions received healing because of his prayers. Discerning that the people were not accepting the spiritual depths and heights that God’s Word and Spirit was offering unto them, William Branham felt the Spirit of God was calling him to do more. He knew that people came to his meetings for many reasons. Some people came because they believed the Spirit of Jesus Christ was present. Others came for the novelty and excitement of it, just as when people flocked to see Jesus healing the sick and multiplying wine, bread, and fish. But it was the teachings of Jesus that changed the history of the world. William Branham felt that God was calling him to teach more during his faith-healing campaigns. He believed his ministry could make a lasting, beneficial contribution to the Christian church. Starting in 1955, he not only taught Divine healing, he also taught other aspects of God’s Word. God gave him a vision of a new stage to his ministry—a “third pull” (to use the angel’s words)—which would surpass everything God had done through him in the past. Inevitably, he offended some people.