Hello to my new friends!

It’s been brought to my attention that there is a new gathering space on Facebook for ex-Message believers, and that my blog has been linked there. I would like to say a proper hello to you all, and to let you know that you are welcome to send me material that you’d like published here [Read More...]

Nothing Between

Nothing between my soul and the Savior So that His blessed face may be seen Nothing preventing the least of His favor Keep the way clear! Let nothing between As a child growing up in the Message, I was taught to search my life constantly for evidence of “idols” – things I might value over [Read More...]

Study time! Marriage, submission, and control in the Message

Let’s take a walk down Message theology lane. Today’s text is a relatively recent sermon (July 14, 2010) called Sowing the Right Atmosphere by pastor Brian Kocourek. At issue in this sermon are scriptural gender roles and the submission and headship model of marriage. Kocourek begins with Deuteronomy 6, a famous passage about taking the [Read More...]

Special Topic: Rejoice Ministries and the “D” word

Note: This message is edited and cross-posted from a thread on the NLQ Forums. After my father divorced my mother (he was not a Message believer, she was), she learned that Message women were not allowed to remarry, as per William Branham’s doctrine of the “natural law of polygamy” preached in the sermon “Marriage and [Read More...]

Why Branham? Why the Message?

    Hardly anybody knows who William Branham was, much less that he has an active following in 2010. He appears only as a footnote in the history of the evangelical and fundamentalist movements. Joel Carpenter’s Revive Us Again (1999), which deals explicitly with the timeframe in which Branham came into the spotlight, totally omits [Read More...]

Mind control and the Message

    In another post, I discussed the defenses of Message believers against accusations that they belong to a cult. Believers distance themselves from accusations of culthood by pointing out that the Message is not a centralized organization, collects no money, and has no explicit creed, localized compound, or living, worshiped leader. But how does [Read More...]

Elijah, but which one?

    Message believers take William Branham to be the last prophet of the gentile dispensation, fulfilling the promise of Malachi 4:5: “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD.” This is, to them, what makes Branham exceptional: other evangelists might bring kernels [Read More...]

Mythbusting the Message: Misogyny

William Branham’s attitude toward women has already been the subject of much commentary. The Apologetics Index notes, “In spite of his apparent humility and consecration, Branham had great difficulty controlling a strident, hateful attitude toward women.” Indeed, in telling his life story, Branham admitted to loathing women as a young man: But I can remember [Read More...]

“We’re not a cult.”

Message believers have a lot of answers to the accusation that they are part of a cult. [Read more...]

Love is corrective

The doctrine of “love is corrective” assumes that there is always an error to be corrected. [Read more...]


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