The History of Believe The Sign
On September 12, 2020, the first-ever English language debate between a message pastor (Jesse Smith of Akron, OH) and an ex-message Christian (Rod Bergen from the Off The Shelf podcast) took place. The discussion was moderated by Jay Cox and Tim Kraus.
- ...and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32
- Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters. - Albert Einstein
This website was borne out of a burden to spread the message that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. We are very thankful to God for allowing us this opportunity, and to those that have helped put the website together.
William Marrion Branham was seen by many in the Pentecostal and charismatic movements as one of the leaders of the healing revival that occurred during the 1940's and 1950's. He is viewed as a man who started well but whose ministry veered from Christian orthodoxy in its latter stages.
Many view him as a charlatan; deceiving people with a false gift of healing; and, holding himself forth as a something that he was not.
A small minority believe him to be a prophet of God, like Elijah or Moses. A man who revealed the hidden mysteries of the Bible, foretold events leading up to the second coming of Jesus Christ, and who was the fulfillment of Malachi 4:5 and Revelation 10:7. Some view him as infallible. All of his followers believe his teachings to be inspired by God.
The purpose of BelieveTheSign is to provide balanced, unbiased information on the ministry of William Branham. We will provide an objective examination of his claims, the beliefs of his followers and the criticisms of his detractors.
We pray that the contents of this website would speak to your soul, and lead you closer to Jesus Christ.
Hi, my name is Jeremy and I’d like to talk to you about the Message of William Branham. I was raised in a church that taught that William Branham was Elijah the prophet in fulfillment of Malachi 4:5. We were taught that the rapture of the elect Bride of Jesus Christ was coming soon. I attended message churches for a total of 32 years. During this time, I published and edited a website called Believethesign.com. Its purpose was to introduce people to Jesus Christ through the prophetic message and ministry of Brother Branham.
When I was creating the website, I had access to a number of people who were eyewitnesses of William Branham’s ministry. We collected their stories on video as firsthand evidence that William Branham’s healing and discernment ministries were authentic. No one asked me to do this.
I also wrote articles on Bible topics popular in the Message, such as the Godhead, Serpent’s Seed, and hair length. Other people volunteered, and we wrote articles on William Branham’s prophecies, the Church Ages and the Seven Seals, using historical evidence to support William Branham’s teachings. William Branham’s life story was also included, supported by as many newspaper, magazine and published sources that we could find. The site was completed with an invitation to believe on Jesus Christ.
What we produced was a thoughtful, artistic website supported by firsthand evidence. The site was not tied to any church, so that people could use it as a witnessing tool from anywhere in the world. And people did use the site! Since 2008, people from over 200 countries have spent over 185,000 hours on the site…and we only started tracking statistics 10 months after we launched the site.
I also responded to hundreds of emails during this time about William Branham’s ministry, and encouraging people in their Christian walk. Because we shared our evidence and knowledge freely, believethesign grew in popularity. In fact, over 80 churches and hundreds of websites linked directly to believethesign at one point or another. The site was also translated into 5 other languages.
Then, some strange things happened.
First, I realized that no one in the message had a photo of Sunset Mountain. All the photos of Sunset Mountain are really of a place called “Rattlesnake Mesa”, which is over 10 miles from Sunset Peak. So we flew down and climbed Sunset Peak just to share photos with Message Believers.
Next, an eyewitness tried to deceive me for personal gain, so I quietly removed that individual’s testimony from the site.
This was followed by some long discussions on the Godhead with Oneness message believers, at which point I realized that I had always been taught Oneness doctrine, even though William Branham said it was wrong.
So went back over everything that Bro. Branham had taught on the subject and re-wrote everything I had published on the Godhead. At this point, believethesign was still widely accepted in Message circles, and approved by virtually every message church we knew of.
We then received a question about a prophecy of William Branham’s death. We hadn’t heard of this prophecy before, so we researched it and found that both Kenneth Hagin, and Freda Lindsay (who was Gordon Lindsay’s wife) confirmed the prophecy. Anna Schrader also had a similar prophecy. This was a big problem for us as Bro Branham had said that Anna Schrader had the gift of prophecy.
In February 2011, we published an article on this topic which was not well received by most in the message – a first for believethesign.
Still, we continued in the Message.
We then received a question about the Municipal Bridge Vision and found that this vision was never fulfilled. This caused a new problem for us because we believed that William Branham was a true prophet. If he was not a true prophet, William Branham could not have fulfilled Malachi 4:5. We reached out to new resources and ministries to see who might confirm the bridge disaster, but found there was no evidence to support that anyone had died during its construction.
We also began to find other discrepancies that created more concern with the message.
So, I updated Believethesign in the fall of 2011 to remove all references to Malachi 4:5 and changed the main scripture to Hebrews 10:8 – “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever” – which was William Branham’s campaign scripture.
We continued attended a message church, and believethesign was still used by our church and other churches around the world.
While we were struggling with whether Bro Branham was really a prophet, we also became concerned with some doctrinal issues, particularly those which he said were “Thus Saith The Lord”. I’m hoping to talk a little more about these doctrines in upcoming videos.
After a few more months of research, the evidence against Bro. Branham status being a prophet became overwhelming. So I published an article called “Humble Pie”, where I apologized for spreading the doctrine that William Branham was the fulfillment of Malachi 4:5.
That’s the history of believethesign to October 2012. We hope that you will continue to watch our videos.
Please let us know if you have any questions or comments and thanks for watching!