Speaker: George Smith
Series: August 2014
Scripture: Acts 1:6
Before the visiting Minister, Brother George Smith, came forward to deliver the morning Message, the host, Pastor Brian Naidoo, introduced his Spiritual Father, Pastor Edgar Roscoe, who was also in service with his family, to greet the Church as an Elder in the Message of the Hour. Greetings from the Elder Pastor Roscoe addressed the congregation in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ and saluted them as enemies of Satan. The minister went on to acknowledge the pioneering and foundational work of the Prophet with an emphasis on the fact that since Brother William Marrion Branham is no longer here with us to preach, give communion or baptise, it is time for the bride to come up and carry the chariot forward. As the Prophet said that men would rise up after his departure to take the Message forward, the five-fold ministry is responsible for taking the Word to the ends of the earth. Pastor Roscoe also noted that from his own commission several other ministries had come up, except Spoken Word Tabernacle (SWT) under Pastor Brian Naidoo. The minister also saluted Brother George Smith who was scheduled to bring the morning Message. He noted that both of them are in the same estate as widowers and encouraged him that their respective wives are waiting for them on the other side. For 50 years Pastor Roscoe has travelled with the Message of the Hour. At this point in his Christian walk he has come to be tired of just quoting the Prophet William Branham in word only.
He emphasised the fact that the quotations have to become alive in our being. As we are called to be DOERS of the Word and not HEARERS only, it behoves us to place more emphasis on the LIFE instead of just the QUOTATIONS. What good will the quotations do if there is no love for one another, he asked? What good does criticism of other ministries do? The real need is for the minister himself to work on his own self, to do a real shaking down. Only when Perfect Love abounds will the resurrection of the waiting saints take place. Brother Roscoe pointed out that gone are the days of pulling away from others. The minister does not want pull away from fellowship with others any more. His only desire is to have no scratch in his heart against anybody. What shows on his face should be anchored in the heart so that there is no hidden malice. He mentioned that by coming to Spoken Word Tabernacle (SWT) he had humbled himself just as a doormat like David said he would love to do in the house of God. He is tired of walking around the mountain instead of hearing that voice of the Archangel. He said that if the church has perfect love, that love cements the congregation and the Pastor together. Pastor Roscoe admitted that he is tired of blasting others, of backbiting, of funerals etc. He said if you have nothing good to say about another, just shut up your mouth. We are nothing before God. And when we are wronged, Christ said we must forgive 70×7 times. We are not worthy. The only worthy one is He who said Father, forgive them. You cannot properly know the depths of love unless you have experienced pain. And when love and pain meet, great things happen. God Himself so loved the world that He gave His only begotten sun. There is a price that is paid for love. It is the price of pain. And that perfect love is what the devil is afraid of. Perfect love is that lost coin which the Bride should look for before the Groom comes. You must love your Pastor and, when you love him, he becomes charged with faith and it is that faith which is really a challenge to the devil. The boasts about who has the biggest church are over. The boasting about the most beautiful building are over. For the beauty of the church is the character of the people, as the Prophet says. Paul says that faith without works is nothing. Love is the greatest virtue. Not even mountain-moving faith can be compared to charity. Pastor Roscoe then asked the host, Pastor Brian Naidoo, for forgiveness if he has wronged him in any way. On that note of reconciliation, the minister encouraged the congregation to shake one another’s hand and say, I love you.
Brother George Smith – Life Story Testimony Brother George Smith explained how he came to be in South Africa on this particular trip from the United States of America (USA). His original purpose was to attend the dedication of a church in the Congo but, upon failing to secure a visa, his footsteps were directed by the Lord to South Africa. He recalled the last contact with the host Pastor was in London earlier in the year where they both visited five different congregations. Brother George marvelled at how Africa seems to have taken over the United Kingdom by virtue of the high numbers of immigrant believers from the continent. The minister acknowledged that he has known Pastor Roscoe for a number of years. As he read the Scripture, Brother George Smith remarked that the disciples were talking to Jesus Christ after His resurrection in a carnal way. He marvelled at how they could ask a question about politics when they were in front of the post-resurrection Lord Jesus Christ in His glorified body. The removal of Romans and establishment of a natural kingdom was cheap politics, which is of the devil. Even church politics, too, is of the devil. But one of these days, the saints will go into a land where there would be no politics. The minister explained that he was simply giving his life story to show the grace of God to him for the sake of inspiring someone.
He likened himself to that young eagle which was hatched by a chicken after a farmer, perhaps from say Zimbabwe or Congo, stole an egg from mama eagle and laid it under the chicken to brood over. In terms of background, Brother George was raised in a Baptist barnyard where his parents worked with the Whittle Bible Translators as missionaries going around the world.
His parents usually travelled on horses and trailers and would go on campaigns that would last up to 4 days in Mexico, where they initially settled. Solemnly warning the church of the on-coming trials, Brother George asked preachers in the congregation to stand up and he reminded them of the fact that preaching is God’s program. Be that as it may, the minister alerted the congregation that, as Christians, the good times are now behind us and the rough times are coming wherefore we must be prepared. As a missionary’s child, the minister used to sit in the front row in church. Time came that he realised that the gospel is directed at him and that he should do something. In 1955 when he was 9 years old, he was baptised in the Father-Son-Holy-Ghost titles which is wrong. After his 6th grade, he moved from Mexico to Texas where he completed the remaining 6 grades while living with family. In 1962 he was in Tucson, Arizona, at a school where his credentials as a non-drinker, non-smoker, non-dancer were noticed by a colleague who hinted to him that he knows a girl who, by her moral standards, matched his own values and beliefs.
When Brother George saw Rebecca Branham, she was the most beautiful girl in the world and he loved her. Since he was raised partly in Mexico and subsequently in the USA, Brother George did not know Brother Branham that much. While others would hesitate to stand in the presence of a gifted man who could see through your life like a mirror by vision, Brother George did not have such fear. Therefore he went to his house because of his love for Rebecca. He met the Prophet at his home when he was working and did not have his shirt on.
The instruction given to Brother Branham to move west following the vision of the stakes being driven in the ground on his yard worked to the advantage of Brother George Smith. For when they settled in the West, the Branham family did not have friends in the new neighbourhood. The house they finally settled in was only one and half blocks away from Brother George Smith. As a young man in love, he would come to the Prophet’s house to pick Rebecca for church and the Prophet allowed him to take his daughter to Baptist Lodge. The minister noted that the Prophet was not legalistic. He was a kind man but very firm on his own convictions. One day when he came to pick up Rebecca in a truck with his brothers, Brother Branham remarked that Brother George was travelling with a bunch of preachers. Today all four siblings are preaching in the Baptist denomination. Only one of his brothers is late in a family of five boys and five girls. In 1963, the minister had a first-hand experience of the Prophet’s ministry.
He concluded that here was either the greatest deceiver on earth or manifestation of the great Biblical prophetic truth. Brother George Smith confirmed that he did not have any questions against the Message of the Hour after seeing the display of life but just noted that it was not the miracles he witnessed which drew him to the Message of the Hour but certainly the girl, Rebecca, who was the bait that caught him. He linked the issue of living a Christian life to the famous words of Francis of Assisi which he said about 900 years ago: PREACH ALWAYS AND, IF NECESSARY, USE WORDS. The Prophet’s life spoke to him, and his kindness was outstanding.
The minister mentioned the Chicago 10-day meetings of January 1950 when a Baptist minister challenged Brother Branham on divine healing. Rebecca Branham was 4 years old at the time and was happy to sit in the auditorium with her daddy. She did not have the privilege to sit with him on his lap as a baby because all the time he would be in front preaching the Word. So little Rebecca was happy, on this night of the debate, to sit with daddy. Years later, when Rebecca heard the Prophet say that 500 ushers gave him way in the auditorium to go to the podium, she asked her mother, Sister Meda, whether there really were 500 ushers in the building. Sister Meda explained to Rebecca that it was Angels in another dimension that the Prophet was talking about. The Prophet was a man who lived in two different worlds at the same time. At one time while negotiating the purchase of the Tucson home with the owner, Brother Branham took his pocket knife and drove it through the wall. On retrieving the knife, the blade came with a deadly scorpion which could have bitten Joseph Branham who playing around that wall.
The Prophet could see through the walls. At another time while eating in the restaurant with his family, the prophet saw a police man come into the restaurant and sit at a table. A short while afterwards, his radio rings and he is called for an emergency. The Prophet comments that there is no need to worry as the boy who has fallen from the storey building will be alright. God had given Brother Branham a vision of the incident right there in the restaurant. In December 1963, the Prophet asked Brother George to sing during the healing line while Rebecca played the piano for the first time after her piano lessons which covered a period of 10 years.
The minister warned that if a believer claims to follow the Message of the Hour but is still caught up by television, they are heading nowhere. Although Brother George lived just close to Rebecca, yet he loved to talk to her over the phone. In his home, the phone was fixed to the wall whereas in the Prophet’s home the phone had a long cable which allowed Rebecca to move into the closet when talking to Brother George for privacy. In 1964, the minister went to Brother Branham to ask for his daughter’s hand in marriage. And here he was, an unemployed young man, no job, no Holy Ghost, no car and yet desired to marry. The Prophet was frank with him saying he would not allow marriage until both children had the baptism of the Holy Ghost. In the meantime, he could only allow engagement. In 1965, Brother George asked for the correct baptism to be done on him and he was re-baptised in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. It was on the 2nd of August in 1965 that Brother George Smith was baptised. Apparently, it would be the last baptism that the Prophet would conduct before his death. While Brother George Smith thought he was on vacation with Pastor Perry Green, the latter asked that they should pray together. Brother George recalls seeing some kind of cloudy sky and some rays of light coming down directly into him. Immediately after that, the phone range and the Prophet on the other end of the line requested to speak to Brother George Smith. He congratulated him on receiving the Baptism of the Holy Ghost, and wished to be the first one to break the news.
Then it dawned on Brother George Smith that the so-called vacation had been a ploy to get him to receive the Holy Ghost. Apparently, the Prophet had told Brother Perry Green that Brother George would be his son-in-law. A day after the Holy Ghost experience, Brother George’s mother received a letter from the USA President for military service for her son. Then a week later, Brother George was a solder with the Holy Ghost baptism. He was called to serve as a cook in the army. When Brother Branham travelled on his own, he would be as casual as could be. But when he was journeying with his family, he would be formally dressed. And on packing his suitcase, the Bible would be on top. He said it was wrong to put anything on top of the Bible.
The Prophet was strict with his children. However, on the day of the accident, Joseph Branham asked to ride in Billy Paul’s car to which the Prophet agreed. It was rare for the Prophet to grant such liberty. The prophet was hit by a drunken driver who was driving a vehicle with one headlamp on, giving the impression that it was a motorcycle. For the 6 days that the Prophet was in the ICU, patients in there were discharged as healthy individuals. On the 24th of December 1965, Brother Branham passed away and the funeral was held on the 29th of December. Meanwhile, Sister Meda had been hurt in the head and could not decide where the Prophet could be buried: the new home or the church in Jeffersonville, Indiana.
In March of 1966, Rebecca Branham and George Smith wedded. Although Rebecca passed away in 2006 due to cancer, (after 4 cancer operations) Brother George still wears his wedding ring. At one time he was asked why he still has the ring and he said that his vow was not unto death, but for eternity. The minister encouraged husbands to love their wives, to make them laugh, even if it meant laughing at them. He said he did not believe in the 50/50 principle of giving and tacking an equal portion in marriage. He said that the 80/20 rule should apply. Give 80% and only expect 20%. The minister warned preachers who want to act smart in this 21st Century who think that since the Messenger is not on the scene, they can do something. He illustrated why Moses had to go to the desert for 40 years: it was to get his Egyptian professorship out of the way. Unlike Moses, Brother Branham was not educated and so God did not have much to extract.