Now. Does man at death go to Heaven or-or to hell immediately, or do they wait for the judgment? Where do we go immediately after death?
14 That’s a very good question. And it does-was due a lot of good consideration, because every man is interested, what is he going to be after this life is over? Every man is interested. Well now, I-for my part, I-I wouldn’t know. I have to answer from the Bible.
15 I guess a woman run up a fifty dollar phone bill awhile ago from Los Angeles, about thirty-five or forty minutes, or maybe longer, on long distance, trying to get me to say that it was legal and right for her to leave her husband and marry another man.I wouldn’t do it. No! I said, “No, sir!”She said, “Well, my husband’s a sinner, and this man’s a Christian.”
16 I said, “That has nothing to do with it. You’ll be in adultery as sure as anything.”Said, “Well, I’m a tubercular case, and there’s not any need for me to live if I can’t have this man.”
17 I said, “You’re just infatuated and not in love, because you couldn’t be, that’s all, ’cause that’s your husband. And you’re vowed to live with him until death separates you. Anything else from that, you’re in adultery.” And so, she just kept hanging on.I said, “Lady, there’s no need… ”She said, “If you’ll just tell me it’s all right.”I said, “I wouldn’t do it.” I said, “I’m… ”She said, “Well, Brother Branham, we’ve got so much confidence in you.”
18 I said, “Then listen to what I’m trying to tell you. I’m telling you the Truth, for I can’t say nothing but what God said.” God said that’s true, so that’s just exactly the way it is. See? I said, “That’s the way it-it’s supposed to be, and that’s the way it has to be.”
19 And now, in these questions, that’s the way we want them to be. Now, it’s always thought… Now, in here, you realize, in this little handful of people tonight, there’s probably all kinds of different ideas; and we think they’re all good, every one of them. Your idea is good, and it’s a… But now, what we do, we have to have somebody… Just like geese, ducks, anything, everything has-bees-everything has a leader. If the queen bee dies, you know what happens. The leader duck dies, they have to get them another one. That, they just have to have a leader.
20 And man’s got to have a leader; and the leader is the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit sets in the Church first, apostles, after that, prophets, and so forth. Someone said not long ago, said, “Why, Brother Branham, we don’t need anybody to teach us. When the Holy Ghost comes, we don’t need anybody to teach.” Said, “The Bible says you do not-not need teaching.”
21 I said, “Then why did the same Holy Spirit set in the Church teachers, see, see, and set the Church in order?” They would… We got to have teachers. That’s right.
Where do we go immediately after death?
22 But you oughtn’t to have anyone… Don’t have to teach you saying, “Thou shalt not commit adultery; thou shalt not swear, and take… ’’ You already know that. Your very conscience of the Holy Spirit tells you it’s wrong to do that.
23 But now as far as Scriptural teaching, it takes a Holy Ghost anointed. That’s right. And God has set the Church in order by apostles and prophets, and gifts of healing, and miracles, and so forth. He set the Church in order and put the teachers and so forth in there to guide and direct His Church. And this morning, we-as we said, Jesus over the earth as His Body… And just as His body moves, it’s just like a shadow reflecting to the earth. It’ll move with it.
24 Now, many people… The Adventist people believe that when a man dies that he goes right into the grave and stays there, soul, body, and everything else, until the resurrection. And their… They call that “soul sleeping.” Well, that’s all right. It’s all right as long as they believe Jesus Christ and is borned again, that won’t hurt them. But now, according to the Scriptures, that when the person dies, if he’s a Christian, if he’s borned again, filled with the Holy Spirit, he’ll never have to stand in the judgments of God. See? He goes straight to the presence of God. And he’ll never have to be in judgment, because he’s already… See?
25 I don’t have to stand for what Christ did for me. Now, I was a sinner, but Christ’s judgment… Here’s-here’s the full thing in a few words: God said, “The day you eat thereof, that day you die.” That settled it.
26 Now, God’s got to keep His Word. He can’t do nothing else but keep His Word, because He’s God. Well then, He can’t. Then, He… You’re separated from God. The… And then, you’re borned in sin, shaped in iniquity, come to the world speaking lies. So when you’re borned, you’re a sinner by nature. So there’s nothing in the world you can do about it. There’s nothing I could do to save myself or you to save yourself. It’s what Christ did for us in God-or what God did for us in Christ. See? It isn’t, well, whether I think this or I do this, it’s whether He did that.
27 Well now, we are in Him. Then He stood God’s judgments; He took the judgment. And Him, being innocent from sin, knowing no sin, yet was made sin for us. So as long as you’re inChrist, you are free from judgment. “When I see the Blood, I’ll pass over you.” See, see? That’s it. The Blood, that frees us.
28 Now, the sinner never… The sinner’s got to stand judgment. And there won’t be but this judgment. It’s just like a-a circle or a rainbow around the world of the Blood of Christ. As long as you’re in here… If God could look upon the earth in its condition tonight any other way than through the Blood of Christ, He would destroy it in a second. He’d have to. Certainly He’d have to. That’s where the judgments is coming.
29 Now, if-or as long as a man’s under here, no matter if the man is a drunkard, and a gambler, and a horrible unbeliever, the mercies of God still atones for him. And a woman, she might be, ever what she might be, a prostitute or whatever, the Blood of Jesus Christ still atones for her. But the minute that her soul leaves this body and she goes beyond that, she’s passed over mercy into judgment. God’s already judged her. That settles it. She’s done. She’s judged. She’s judged.
30 You judge yourself by the way you treat God’s propitiation there for your sins. See? You judge yourself. You don’t judge Him just enough to forgive you. See? If you think He’ll forgive you, confess your faults, and He’ll forgive you.
31 Then by one Spirit (notice) we’re all baptized into one Body. And as that body was raised up by God, resurrected from the dead, justified, setting at His right hand in power and majesty in Heaven, so them that are dead in Christ, are in Christ, and free from judgment, and will come forth in the resurrection.
32 Now. But when we die now-when we die now, we go directly into the presence of Almighty God in a celestial body. If I would meet Brother Neville up there, if we both die now, in an hour from now I’d meet him; I’d say, “Greetings, Brother Neville,” talk to him. I couldn’t shake his hand; he’s in a celestial body. I could talk to him; he’d look just like he does there. I’d look like I do. But we could talk to one another, but we couldn’t touch one another, because we haven’t got any of the five senses of see, taste, feel, smell, and hear. See? But we would be immortal, and we could see one another. We’d live in the blessed realms by the altar of God. Don’t you know John saw the souls under the altar crying, “How long, Lord, how long” to come back to the earth to be clothed upon?
33 Then, when Jesus, which is in us now in the form of the Holy Ghost, when His celestial body, the Holy Spirit, returns with the glorified body, we’ll be glorified with Him and in His likeness. See what I mean? Then I’ll shake his hand and say, “Here it is, Brother Neville.” Then we’ll eat.
34 Look. Jesus told His disciples, taking their Communion, He said, “I’ll eat no more of the fruit of the vine until I eat it and drink it with you anew in My Father’s Kingdom.” Is that right? See? There it is. So, we… When the dead dies… A justified person, standing in the presence of God, goes into His presence as a immortal being and lives in the blessed realms of peace until the day that-returns back.
35 Now, there was a time that the people didn’t go into the presence of God when they died, the justified. That was in the Old Testament. They went into a place called Paradise, and there the souls of the just waited in Paradise. But Paradise was a place where God kept the souls in like a dreamland, until the Blood of Jesus Christ was shed; for the blood of bulls and goats would not take away sin, it only covered up sin. But Jesus’ Blood takes away sin.
36 You notice that His-when He died at Calvary… And on His return, He brought out from the grave those dead saints that had died under the atonement of blood of bulls, and goats, and heifers. And they entered into the city (oh!) and appeared to many. How beautiful a picture! Oh, if we could paint it just a moment. Look at Jesus when He died.
37 Here, as I’ve often said, I believe, in the church here, there’s a-a row here like, in here lives mortal beings.
And each one is in this great conglomeration of gaiety, of blackness and darkness. Mortals live in here. Now, they are either influenced from this way, or from that way. You cannot be here a spiritual being,sinner or saint, without having an influence from the underworld or from the above world. If you are influenced from here, you’re from above. Your celestial body is waiting up here. But if you’re wicked, and hypocritical, and indifferent, your celestial body is down here, regardless of how much you think it’s up there; because the fruit that you bear before people proves where you’re from.
So you are here what you are somewhere else. Your life that you live here is just reflecting what your inheritance is when you leave here. Do you understand?
38 We are right now (oh, when I think of that) we are right now glorified in the presence of God, borned again believers. “For if this earthly tabernacle be dissolved, we have one already waiting in Glory,” not somewhere else, right yonder already waiting now. And these earthly bodies groan to be clothed upon with that immortality. Is that right? Sickness, and aches, and pains, and disappointments, and heartaches, and… Oh! I’ll be glad when the old pesthouse is closed up, won’t you? Yes, sir! We can go Home. That’s right.
39 Just, we are, groan to be clothed upon, the Spirit’s groaning. Oh, when you look and see all the pain around about, all the conglomeration, stink, and sin, and mortal living, and deceit, and everything, I think, “Oh, God, how much longer will it be?”
40 One of these days I’m going to preach my last sermon, going to lay the Bible down like this, and go Home. Oh, what a time that’ll be. And when this earthly tabernacle is finished here, it won’t be one second till I’ll be in that one yonder; so will you. Oh, my! No wonder they said:This robe of flesh I’ll drop and rise, And seize the everlasting prize; And shout while passing through the air… (Sure, moving on up.)
41 Now, where is that? When do we have it? Now! “Those whom He justified, He also glorified.” And do you realize that our glorified, immortal body is waiting in the presence of Jesus Christ right now, waiting for us to come
42 Do you know when a baby is begotten in this earth,before it’s delivered it’s got life. But it hasn’t been delivered. And just as soon as that baby comes to-it-it begins to-is borned… It’s lungs are all closed up, and it’s dead.
It’s muscles are quivering and jerking. But the first thing, just a little spank or two like that [Brother Branham illustrates-Ed.], and he’ll [Brother Branham gasps-Ed.] catch his breath. What’s the matter? As soon as that natural body is being formed in the mother, there is a spiritual body waiting to receive it just as soon as that baby’s born.
43 And just as sure as this spiritual body is being formed, there is a natural body waiting to receive it as soon as it goes out of this world. See? Vice versa, right back to Eden again (see?), just right back.
44 Now in there, God… Why death, that just-that just knocks all the sting out of death there is. And no wonder Paul could stand and say, “Death, where is your sting? Grave, where is your victory?” He said, “Thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Yes, sir. This earthly tabernacle be dissolved we already got one waiting, so just forget about it.
45 Now to you, friend, if you’re a sinner who asked this, God be merciful to you. Yes, sir! You’re not only under condemnation now, not here, no! You’ll prosper and go on. And that’s all through the mercies of God. That’s all through the mercies of God that you prosper and do what you do. That’s true. But one of these days, if you’re a sinner and your soul slips out, it’ll go yonder into judgment and will be condemned. And then, you’ll be cast away, and you’ll be in torment until the day that you are brought back to this earth again. And you will receive an immortal body, a immortal body that cannot die, and will be cast away into outer darkness where there’ll be weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth. You’ll be cast into hell, where the worm never dies or fire is never quenched, and you’ll be tormented through all ages there is to come. Jesus said that. That’s a black picture, but it’s what the Bible said.
46 If God so condemned sin and had it cost such a price, what will it be if those unjust spirits could ever be made loose again? We’d have another thing like we’ve had in the last six thousand years. Is that right? There’ll never be an opportunity again.
47 Now you say, “Well, I believe that when you go to the grave you-you go to hell.” Your body goes to hell, that’s right. Hell means “separation.” Death means “separation.” Your body dies, separates. You go from your loved ones here, but that’s not what we’re talking about. “It’s once appointed unto man to die, then after that, the judgment.” See?
48 Now, when you’re-if you have to stand the judgment of God, you’re going to be judged by an angry God. And God is going-has already pronounced what He was going to do. So you know what your judgment will be before you even get there. So the thing to do is to be saved and have this glorified being…
49 Look. If I have to-if my spirit… Look, we’re not something dead; we’re alive. If-if my-if this desk here-if this plank had the life in it that’s in my finger, that desk, and it had an intelligence to move it, it can move like my finger moves. We’re not made of that kind of material. We are made of-of-of-of cells, and of life, and of fiber; and there’s a spirit here that controls it all. And just look how fast it has to travel. Look here; my hand touches that. Now, no sooner…
There has to be a negative and a positive reaction. As soon as my finger touches that, it feels that. That quick it goes to my mind, and my mind says, “That’s cold,” and go back. See how quick that is? Quicker than thought, quicker than anything, is the act there. What is it? There’s something alive in there, and that nerve works on the mind. See what I mean? The nerve touches it, feels it, and says to the mind, “It’s cold.” The mind says it’s cold, because it’s felt by the nerve. Oh, my! You talk about a makeup.
50 And then-all of that… How quick that God knows every thought that we think of. Everything that we do, He knows of it.
So when the believer dies, he goes into the presence of his Maker, his God. And the sinner, when he dies, goes to his destination. Then at the return… Now, I’m talking now of the Elect.
51 But there’s some that will come up in the second resurrection, that’ll have to stand in the judgment with the sinner, to be judged with him. I want to be sure to get that. See?
52 Now, there’ll be… The first that’ll take place will be the-the coming of the Bride. There will be people in the world… I… You might different a little with this, but listen close. Just because that you accepted Christ as personal Saviour, that doesn’t mean that you’re going in the rapture. That’s for the Elect, that’ll go in the rapture. There’ll be a remnant left here on earth that’ll go through the persecution and the great tribulation. The Church will be caught up in the rapture.
53 How many women here doesn’t know that when you going to cut a piece of goods you lay the goods out like this, and lay your pattern on it like this, and you cut the goods just according to the pattern. Is that right? And the rest of the goods is just the same kind of goods that’s in the pattern. Is that right? But this is the kind you take. You might lay that away for farther use, but the-the goods that you cut out of…
54 Now, who places the pattern? God, by election. Amen! God by election places the pattern. He said, “Now, I have chosen before the foundation of the world… I place these… ” Why, Jesus told the disciples that He was with them, and He had chose them, and knew them before the foundation of the world was ever laid. Is that right? So God places the pattern. Now, there’ll be an Elect that’ll go in the rapture. And there’ll be a group of people that’s good, upright, holy living, God-saved people, that will not be in the rapture; and they’ll come up in the second resurrection, because…
55 Oh, I-I hope you won’t get angry with me if I just make something real plain here to you. See? Don’t do it. I-I’ve got to say it, because I-just keeps choking to me (you see?) to say it. Look. Now look. Then, I’m going to say this: There’s a people that believe in justification by faith (see?), and they live a good, clean, holy life; they believe in sanctification too, receive…
56 Look at Judas Iscariot. Judas Iscariot was justified when he believed on the Lord Jesus Christ and accepted Him as his personal Saviour-Judas Iscariot. Judas Iscariot was sanctified in John 17:17 and was given power in Matthew 10 to go out and cast out devils. And Judas Iscariot come back, after he healed the sick and cast out devils, and he come back rejoicing and shouting just as much as any good holy-roller you ever seen. Is that right? The Bible says so. But when he come to Pentecost, he showed his color. Now watch that-that spirit.
57 There’s people in the world today, good Christian people that’ll believe in justification, many of them, thousands, millions that believe in justification. But they’ll have nothing to do with sanctification. We’d say that’s Presbyterian, Episcopalian, and so forth. They believe in justification; preach it. And it’s good; they’re right.
58 But now, the-the Nazarene, Pilgrim Holiness, Free Methodist move up into sanctification. They believe in sanctification. Correctly! They’re right. And they get victory, and shout, and praise the Lord. They’re correct; they’re right. But speak to either one of them about the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and the power, and signs, and wonders, they’ll show their color right there. Say, “I don’t want none of that. I don’t believe… ” Well, even to my good Nazarene people, believe that a man speaks with tongues is of the devil. And, brother, you do that, you…
59 Why, they put Dr. Reedhead out of the Sudan Missions, the president of it, because that he spoke with tongues. Said, “We can’t have it.”
60 I said, “You can’t preach like Paul then. You can’t accept Paul’s Gospel, for Paul said, ‘Forbid not to speak with tongues.’” That’s right. But they-they say it’s of the devil. They’ve seen a lot of counterfeit, and carry it all over there. See? But there is a justified and sanctified church; but deny that the baptism of the Holy Ghost is a different work from sanctification. But it is-it is a different work. Sure it is.
61 There was three elements came from Christ’s body. And the same elements came from His body is what we use to go into His Body. There was water (is that right?), Blood (is thatright?), and Spirit. And Jesus, the Scripture said, “There are three that bear record in Heaven, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. These three are One; they are One. But there’sthree that bear record in earth; they’re not one,” he said, “but they agree as one: Water, Blood, and Spirit.” Is that right?
62 Now, you cannot have the Father without having the Son. You can’t have the Son without having the Holy Ghost, because-but you can be justified without being sanctified. And can be both justified and sanctified and still not have the baptism of the Holy Ghost. See? That’s true. That’s Scripture. “These three,” he said, “that bear record in earth, water, Blood, and Spirit; and they agree in one.” See? They are not one, but they agree in one, because it’s the same Spirit with a measure. God gives us the Spirit in measure.
63 Now, Luther, under justification, that’s what he preached. Is that right? Luther preached, “The just shall live by faith.” He had a great message. And that was a portion of the Holy Ghost. Then Luther, when the message come forth-God was going to raise up His Church and send It out greater (oh, my!), Luther said, “Oh, we believe we’ve got It here.”
64 But John Wesley said, “Oh, no!” Him and GeorgeWhitefield and them, they said, “We believe in sanctification, that, as being the second definite work of grace.” Is that right? And they preached the Blood. Well, if Luther didn’t want to move, God just give it to the Wesleyan Methodists. See? And they had it. And they had a revival that swept the world, and the real Church.
65 Well, now, when that time comes along… Now, along comes the Holy Ghost evidence of signs, wonders, and miracles. Now, Wesley don’t want to agree with this. Now, if Wesley was on earth and Martin Luther was on earth at these times, they would agree with it, but they just got about the second round of a-of-of four or five rounds of apostles passed through it, and they just seine it all away.
66 Now, the Pentecostal received and believed in speaking in tongues. Then they turned it into “initial evidence,” that everybody had to speak with tongues. That’s an error. But now-now they come back… Those were God’s given traits. Just like I can’t help, ’cause I’ve got blue eyes, or… God just give it. That’s just gifts in the Church. God set them in. “God hath set in the Church… ” See?
67 Now. But when they come along with that… Now, they had a great blessing, went far beyond the Lutheran or the-the Methodist, either one. And now, they’ve organized in such a way until they’re worse than the Methodist and the others-the Pentecostals. And then, they got to a place where the second and third round… It’s been about forty years since they begin to receive speaking in tongues. But this tree of God has nine different fruits on it. Now, any of these fruits you can have. See? God has sent them, but altogether comes out of the tree. Now, justification, look at it.
68 Look at this morning’s lesson. When the judgment was set, and the books were opened… Now, Jesus came with ten thousand times ten thousands of saints, and then the judgment was set. Here they all are around the White Throne judgment (as we went through the Scripture with it), and the books were opened; and another Book was opened which was the Book of Life. And these in the rapture were judging them. Is that right? Them that done went home and received their glorified bodies, and lived through the Millennium, was here in the White Throne Judgment, judging those. He said He would separate the sheep from the goats. Now, you say here, “Why, now look.” You say, “Is that come up… Whereabouts, Brother Branham?” In the White Throne judgment.
69 “What about in the rapture?” Well, in the rapture time… Jesus taught that as a parable. And He taught it many different ways. Here’s one way. He said that there were ten virgins went out to meet the Lord. And so-… All of them were virgins, but some had Oil in their lamps and some let the Oil go out. Is that right? And when the Bride… Now, what was the Oil? The Oil was the Holy Spirit; the Bible said so. Now look. They were virgins. Now, what does virgin mean? “Holy, clean, separated, sanctified.” Is that right?
70 If I had a little glass here I’d show you what… Here, for instance like this bottle here, if it was empty, and I picked it up, and it was just as dirty as it could be… I want to use it. Well now, the first thing I want to do is Justification. I pick it up because I want to use it. It’s dirty; I found it out in the-in the pigpen, or wherever it was. Now, if I’m the right kind of person, well, I don’t want to put something clean in there I’m going to have to use. I-I have to fix that thing up first. Now, the best thing to do is scour it, clean it, and sanctify it. Is that right? Now, what does the word sanctify mean? “Cleaned and set aside for service.” The vessels of the old temple were cleaned and set aside for service.
71 Now, there’s the Church: God picked them up through the Lutheran age, justification; Wesley age, He sanctified them; and in this age He fills them. See? He puts the Life in them. And when this, His Life through the Holy Spirit… The Holy Spirit picked them up; the Holy Spirit sanctified them; the Holy Spirit filled them. See? It’s all the same Church. But now look. Now in this day…
72 Now, I think that Luther, Wesley, and all of them, many of them will go in the rapture. They had the portion of the Spirit was preached to them; they believed it.
73 Now, in the rapture… There’s people today who went in those denominations that didn’t move on. It’s a… There’s only been one denomination, that’s God’s Church; and It’s just moved on just the same. But these organizations has broke these things up like that. And many people today will look at the baptism of the Holy Ghost and say it’s nonsense. But yet they been justified; yet they been sanctified. But they say, “Oh, that’s carrying on, that stuff.”
74 I know the devil’s got all kinds of scarecrows out. That’s where you find the good apples, is around where the scarecrow’s at. That’s right. Just go right on in behind the thing, go eating apples. See?
75 Now, this… Then God filled with the Holy Spirit… Then He set His Church out to glorify It. On the second coming, here comes the Church back, the Bride. Now watch. See whether they go through the tribulation period. He said, “These virgins, that they come and said, ‘Give us of your Oil.’” “The Bridegroom comes!” The sound went out, “Behold, the Bridegroom is coming. Go ye out to meet Him.” And these virgins, who were virgins, holy, sanctified (think of it), holy, sanctified people without the baptism of the Holy Ghost, they said, “Give us Oil!”
76 And the Church said, “We just have enough for ourself. You go pray up then.” But it’s too late then. So, the church went into the Wedding, and these others were cast into outer darkness (is that right?), where there was weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth; and they went through the persecution, suffered, died.
77 Jesus returned back to the earth. The Millennium reign set in, a thousand years with Him. Up come the-the just and the unjust. And They judged every man. And the goats were on one side and the sheep on another side. And then God came and taken the Church up on the breadth of the earth for the camp meeting, where we all gather together with our loved ones. See? There’s a difference.
78 Now, these people here… Certainly when we die, if we are in Christ Jesus, we go to be with that great Body yonder, Christ Jesus. If we are sinners, we go to be with that great body of unbelievers; and God said our portion was with the hypocrites, and so forth, in hell. Amen! It may not be just exactly clear. But, let’s see now if we can find out… Just a little note here.
William Marrion Branham54-0103E Questions And Answers