Every picture tells a story
By now anyone interested in the history of Pentecostalism and the supernatural have seen the famous picture of a light Branham claimed was the Pillar of fire that followed him all his life.
January of 1950, Houston, Texas rec. W. E. Best of the Houston Tabernacle Baptist church had hired two photographers to take photographs during the debate.
All the negatives turned out blank (5 of 6) except for the one picture taken of Branham. In his photograph, a column shaped light is above his head. When the story is related by Branham it is called almost always a halo. Which it certainly is not.
Branham repeated this statement numerous times, it is “The first time in all the world's history that a supernatural Being was ever photographed.”
There are many who had pictures ectoplasm, of ghosts that was circulated before his time. He statement is in conflict with a worldwide community. Are not UFO pictures of the supernatural? Branham himself said they were angels and there are far more pictures of UFO’s then of his light. Regardless this picture in particular became the sign to vindicate him as a prophet, so they say.
Speaking of developing the picture, “And when he taken this one out, that halo appeared on there. He almost went into a heart attack. He didn't know what had happened. He tried to get me out of the Rice Hotel. 'Course, you realize why, they had to... They couldn't do that. And the next morning, he become a believer. He was a... He was an Orthodox Jew, but become a firm believer in Jesus Christ, the Son of God.” (50-0813E, God Revealing Himself To His People, Tent Meeting, Cleveland, OH)
That is interesting angle considering that Branham did not believe Jesus is the Son of God, he said the Holy Spirit is. A few years later “The man had a heart attack that tested the picture” (53-0907A Lord show us the Father and it suffficeith us Chicago, IL)
And there is absolutely no evidence for these stories, except his claim.
What’s supernatural is that no one saw this pillar of light, only the camera picked it up. But that’s not how Branham tells it. According to Branham at the debate of Bosworth who was defending Branham’s ministry against a Baptist (Best) who wanted to argue about healing Branham. Near the end of the debate Branham came to stage for a few minutes, he tells us the Lord then came to have his picture taken as a light above him?
But Branham explained what happened quite differently than others who attended, “And that’s all Catholic people and all setting there saw It, looked at It. Many of them begin to scream and fainting. Come right down, a Pillar of Fire, moved right down to where I was at. He shot the picture.” (54-1129 Testimony, p.m, West Palm Beach, Florida)
The insinuation is that the photographer ran up to take the picture when he saw their reaction to the light, as did so many others. Branham say he was aware of the lights coming.
“And then when this Angel came down, that photographer had that great machine set, and he shot the picture. And when He come down, people screaming, I said, "I will have to speak no more. He speaks in my place." I went out. The policeman helped me to the car.” (60-0210M The Revelation that was Given to me)
This is not at all what happened at the meeting. People screaming from seeing the light and being escorted by a policeman to his car. Furthermore, Branham adds details to the event that gives even more intrigue by saying all kinds of things said and done by Mr. Lacy.
As we go into this further we will see the truth is barely recognizable from Branham’s own words.
Who tested the picture?
Branham said continuously of the picture “George J. Lacy of the FBI, examined it.” (61-0224, Be Not Afraid, Fairgrounds Auditorium, Tulare, CA)
“Before it could be released, it had to go before the FBI examinations.” (50-0714 At thy word Minneapolis MN)
“Now, that is tested by the G. Edgar Hoover outfit, of fingerprint and photography, and so forth, to be proven that it's perfect. The first time in all the world's history that a supernatural Being was ever--was ever photographed. First time in all the world's... George J. Lacy at--at the Shell Building in Houston, Texas, was the one who had to examine it for two days. If you notice, see how It's licking and blazing and burning? And they... George said, "Well, go before the world." (50-0820E Believe Ye that I am able to do this Cleveland OH)
The FBI did NOT, I repeat they did not test the picture or have anything to do with it.
It was Gordon Lindsay who hired Lacy to evaluate the photo and it cost them a good sum of money.
Branham said over and over of Lacy “And so he's the head of the FBI.” (53-1129E, Testimony, American Legion Hall, West Palm Beach, FL).
He was NOT!
“Mr. Lacy, here, which is the head of the FBI,” (53-0604, The Angel Of The Lord, Roberts Park Amphitheater, Connersville, IN; 56-0419, Earnestly Contending For The Faith That Was Once Delivered unto The Saints, Spindale House Recreation Center, Spindale, NC; 57-0805, God Manifesting His Gifts, Edmonton Arena, Edmonton, AB; 58-0223, Jesus Christ The Same Yesterday, Today, and Forever, Memorial Auditorium, Chattanooga, TN; 58-0312, Jesus Christ The Same Yesterday, Today, And Forever, National Guard Armory, Harrisonburg, VA; 58-0515, Jesus Christ The Same Yesterday, Today, And Forever, National Guard Armory, Fairfield, ME; 61-0521, Show Us The Father, United Church, Dawson Creek, BC; 62-0123, Forsaking All, Full Gospel Church, Tempe, AZ)
Then Branham added “George J. Lacy, the head of the FBI in fingerprint and documents.” (54-1205, We Would See Jesus, Faith Tabernacle, Binghamton, NY)
Lacy was NOT the head of the FBI, nor in the FBI. Neither was he the head of the FBI, fingerprint and documents. (55-0806, Jesus Christ The Same Yesterday, Today, And Forever, Methodist Campgrounds, Campbellsville, KY; 61-0213, It Is I, Be Not Afraid, First Assembly Of God Of Long Beach, Long Beach, CA; 62-0623, Perseverant, Great Western Exhibit Center, South Gate, CA)
But Branham went around saying this when he told his story of the picture. Lacy had his own business and could be hired by anyone.
Branham: But I said, "God never testifies of a lie. He testifies of truth. And if I testify of truth, God will testify of me." I no more than said that, and something went "Whooo" and here He come, right coming down. And here It was right above me like this, the Angel of the Lord standing there, thirty thousand people looking at it. They shot the picture of It, and the association took the picture, they said, "It can't be psychology." (53-0907A, Lord, Show Us The Father And It Sufficeth Us, Chicago Gospel Tabernacle, Chicago, IL)
There are those rare occasions Branham actually told the truth without exaggeration or embellishment, this is NOT one of them. 10 years later he still stated, “the Angel of the Lord appeared before around thirty thousand people, and come down, and the picture was taken.” (63-0319, The Second Seal, Branham Tabernacle, Jeffersonville, IN)
The Houston chronicle said there were 8,000 in attendance. Branham exaggerates the attendees to be almost 4 times the size. Not unlike his other exaggerations throughout his life.
“how many ever seen the picture that the government taken of the Angel of the Lord right in the house of...? George J. Lacy's examination, the head of the FBI, said it was an Angel of the Lord. The Light struck the lens of the camera. Said "The camera won't take psychology." (59-0708E, Be Certain Of God, Mayfield Elementary School, Cleveland, TN)
Again Branham insinuates the FBI not only was involved, but took the picture. The photographer was hired by Best who debated Bosworth.
I want you to notice how loose Branham gets with the facts, how this turns into one of those fish stories. Y’know, the ones like, it was this big, no, it was thiiis big.
What did Mr. Lacy actually say? “but there's a FBI documents of that of George J. Lacy. He said, "The Light struck the lens. It was there." That's all.” (56-1207, Gifts, Maranatha Temple, Brooklyn, NY)
That’s all is right, that’s all he said. Anything else is an addition. How do we know this? Because he signed a paper with his response on it.
He said, "No, the Light struck the lens." And he said to me; he said, "You know the mechanical eye of this camera won't take psychology." That's right. And it struck the lens.” (56-0224, Jehovah-Jireh, Gospel Tabernacle, Sioux Falls, SD)
This turned into “George J. Lacy, the head of the FBI., of Fingerprint and Document, examined the picture; he said, "The Light struck the lens." Put the testimony, and wrote it down and signed his name to it.” (60-0708, Sir, We Would See Jesus, City High School, Klamath Falls, OR)
The light struck the lens; it was there." Said, "Now, what it is, I can't tell you, but it's there." Said, "I'll write my name to it." He did, and you've got it yourself. Yes, sir. And that was with the FBI. See? 62-0401, Wisdom Versus Faith, Branham Tabernacle, Jeffersonville, IN)
Anything more this is complete fabrication by Branham, from his overactive imagination or worse, he is blatantly lying.
Mr. Lacy said, …"The Light struck the lens. And it's a leaping, flaming, emerald fire, a burning.” (52-0817E, Do You Now Believe?, Kellogg Auditorium, Battle Creek, MI)
There is no testimony written or on tape of Lacy saying it was a supernatural being or that it was an angel, that is Branham adding his own words to it.
“how many ever heard of George J Lacy? He's the best that there is in FBI on fingerprint and researches in California at the time, and they brought him to Houston, Texas, for a research to touch--to find that. He took the camera; he took everything. He took the film he--he took everything, went to the thea--stadium and everything to check it all over and everything. Had it three days and nights under violet ray lights and everything else, he kept it. And on the afternoon of the fourth day he called and said, "Now, I'll give the analysis of what about the picture. All of us come in. There set the newspapers and so forth. I was setting way back about half as many people was in this aisle here." He said... He come out, he's kind of a red headed fellow. He said, "Whose name is Reverend Branham?" I said, "Mine, sir." He said, "Stand up." I stood up. He said, "Reverend Branham, you're going to pass out of this life like all mortals." I said, "I know that, sir. But thanks be to God, I'm prepared for that hour." And he said, "Would you come forward?" I said, "Yes, sir." He said, "I submit this to you." He said, "Reverend Branham, I've been one of your critics." He said, "I've said that was psychology, the people saying they seen that--and that Light and that Pillar of Fire and so forth." Said, "They--they... I said it was psychology. I've heard of others taken it, and I said it was psychology." He said, "But, Reverend Branham, the mechanical eye of that camera will not take psychology." He said, "The Light struck the lens." If Branham stopped here he would be closer to actual facts but he continues to ad lib And he said, "It's the first time in all the world's history that ever a supernatural Being was ever photographed." He said, "The old hypocrite (which he meant the unbeliever) has said there's no scientific proof that there is a s--a supernatural Being." But said, "That can't be said no more." Said, "But here's a scientific picture to prove that there is a supernatural Being." And one of them hangs in the Religious Hall of Art in Washington, DC dedicated to the place. The picture's under copyright, the studios have sold thousands of them.” (53-0603, God Commissioning Moses, Roberts Park Amphitheater, Connersville, IN)
He said, "But Reverend Branham, that mechanical eye of the camera won't take psychology." Said, "The Light struck the lens, and there It is." What is it? The scientific world knows that I've told the truth; there It is to prove it. That's a better--that's a better vindication... And I'll say this, my Bible here, that same Light isn't hanging two foot from where I'm standing. That's exactly right. It's a... It's like a sixth sense. It's right here, right up in this direction. I am not a fanatic; I'm a Christian minister, and that's the truth.” (55-0227E, The Healing Of Jairus' Daughter, Shriner Temple, Phoenix, AZ)
Branham continued to say "The mechanical eye of this camera won't take psychology.” (63-0630M, The Third Exodus, Branham Tabernacle, Jeffersonville, IN)
What did Mr. Lacy actually say?
Lacy, He said, "I'll gladly write my statement." And he wrote it, signed it. The Douglas Studios taken it.” (60-0210M The revelation that was given to me)
Here is the only statement we have
George J. Lacy
Examiner of Questioned Documents
Houston, Texas, U.S.A.
REPORT AND OPINION
Re: Questioned Negative January 29, 1950
this is a reproduction of the letter
“George J. Lacy, the head of the FBI in fingerprint and document, stood up before the people at Houston there at the Shell Laboratory, and said, "I've been a critic myself. I been a critic of Mr. Branham. I said it was psychology." He said, "But psychology... That mechanical eye of the camera won't take psychology. That Pillar of Fire was hanging there; It struck the lens." (59-0815, As The Eagle Stirreth Up Her Nest, Miami Valley Chautauqua Campgrounds, Chautauqua, OH)
Is this what Lacy said? No it is not. He said a light struck the lens, that is all. Branham is putting words in his mouth.
Branham gives this story of which no one can verify of Lacy saying this in front of witnesses. “There was about two hundred people, writers of magazines, different papers, and he stood up, and he said, "Whose name is Branham?" I said, "Mine." Said, "Come here." He's kind of red-headed...?... hair on his face, and he said, "Stand here." Said, "Yes, sir." He said, "Mr. Branham, I've been one of your critics. I've said that that was psychology, but listen Reverend Branham, the mechanical eye of that camera won't take psychology. The Light struck the lens."…And he said, "Forgive me for being your critic," and he handed me the negative. I said, "It's not mine. It belongs to the studio." He said, "Mr. Branham, that--that negative is worth tens of thousands of dollars." Said, "It's the only time that a supernatural Being was ever scientifically photographed." Now, I said, "I would not take it. Upon your statement, if Jesus loved me enough to come down and have His picture taken with me for the first time in all the world's history, who am I to sell His picture to make money from it?" But in the copyright so that no one can sell it, without your statement... He said, "I'll gladly write my statement." And he wrote it, signed it. The Douglas Studio's taken it.” (60-0210, The Revelation That Was Given To Me, Escambron Beach Club, San Juan, PR)
We have seen that statement, what he signed did not say It's the only time that a supernatural Being was ever scientifically photographed.
“George J. Lacy, head of the FBI, fingerprint and documents, took the picture of an Angel of God, the Pillar of Fire that led the children of Israel. And all knows that that Pillar of Fire was Jesus Christ.” (58-0512, Life, Capitol Theater, Everett, MA)
Say what? This little light above his head is the pillar of fire? Do you see a light on Branham? Because that is what the pillar of fire did, it gave light to nearly 2 million people. If you want to believe that your welcome to it. BTW I have a car that never runs out of gas, believe it.
The question is what kind of light is it. Some people see what they want to see. Or better yet, some people believe what they don’t see.
“And there he is, after two days of research, and chemicals and everything else, said, "It's absolutely the picture of a supernatural Being standing there beside of you." (52-0726, Experiences, Grace Missionary Church, Zion, IL
“Here's George J. Lacy the head of the FBI. There's his signed signature that It was a supernatural Being there, when It was taken before thirty thousand people.” (53-0507, Expectations, Bible Hour Tabernacle, Jonesboro, AR
“George J. Lacy, the head of the FBI fingerprint and document for the United States government, examined It from Houston, Texas, and said, "This is the only supernatural Being was ever photographed in all the world." (65-0219, This Day This Scripture Is Fulfilled, Park View Junior High School, Jeffersonville, IN)
Year after year Branham said what Lacy did not say. And those who believe Branham’s message continue that hearsay as they try to connect the dots of Lacy with the FBI, its just not there. Its all Branham’s words, and since they trust this man they believe everything he says.
Go to fbi.gov/history and see if you can find Lacy on their website.
“Mr. Lacy passed his opinion and put it on document, that it's the only supernatural Being that's ever been photographed in all the world.” (The Healing Of Jairus' Daughter, Shriner Temple, Phoenix, AZ)
You have just read the document, Lacy did not say what Branham is telling you. It’s not there!
Branham said this numerous times, year after year. “George J. Lacy's name signed to it: the only supernatural Being was ever photographed.” (58-0515, Jesus Christ The Same Yesterday, Today, And Forever, National Guard Armory, Fairfield, ME)
He NEVER said this, there is no signature for this statement on this document. What proof does Branham have? The same proof we have. The paper that was issued.
Those who promote prophet Branham do the same that he did, embellish and add to a story so that it sounds like this is what really happened. It didn’t.
I want to warn readers that there are those who have added this portion Former Head: F.B.I. Laboratories to the document that is presented above. It’s not there.
George J. Lacy
Former Head: F.B.I. Laboratories
Examiner of Questioned Documents
Houston, Texas, U.S.A.
you can verify George Lacy and his non involvement with the FBI by going to the website. http://www.asqde.org/about/presidents/lacy_g.html
He was responsible for establishing the Houston Police Crime Laboratory and maintained a private practice in Houston, Texas
How many days did Lacy have the picture according to Branham?
“There that night, even yet at eleven o'clock that negative went to Washington, DC by plane.” (52-0713A Early Spiritual experiences)
“The next morning, they flew the picture away to Washington, DC for a copyright. Before it could be released, it had to go before the FBI examinations. And when they did, they went and got the best, George J. Lacy, the best there is in the United States.” (50-0714 At thy word Minneapolis MN)
“Two or three days later, the negative was flown to Washington DC that night, at eleven o'clock, and brought back. And George J. Lacy, the head of the FBI on fingerprint and documents was flown there to take a test of this picture, to see if it was something had been painted on there, a double exposure, or something wrong.” (60-0210M The revelation that was given to me)
Two days “had to examine it for two days” (50-0820E Believe Ye that I am able to do this Cleveland OH)
Three days “He had it three days in the Shell Building. On the third day he said--said he'd show it to us, and he'd give his... what he thought it was.” (53-0509, The Pillar Of Fire, Bible Hour Tabernacle, Jonesboro, AR)
4 days, which is mostly what Branham said. “they took it to George J. Lacy, the head of the FBI. He examined it for four days and declared it to be a supernatural Being that struck the lens.” (53-0907A, Lord, Show Us The Father And It Sufficeth Us, Chicago Gospel Tabernacle, Chicago, IL)
5 days “examined it for about five days” (61-0312 Jehovah Jireh)
Which is correct? 2-3-4-5 days. This is the kind of storytelling accuracy one gets from Branham. According to the document, the photo that was taken at the debate on the 24th. Notice on Lacy’s report that he received it on Jan.28, 4 days after the photo was taken and he took one day to examine it and released it back on the 29th.
Can you trust man who can’t get his story straight to tell you about the supernatural occurrences of God in his life? What if you read of Moses saying God gave him 6, 7 8, 9 commandments. Would he be trustworthy when the Bible says 10?
It hangs where?
“And now it hangs in Washington, DC, in the hall of fame.” (53-0326, Israel And The Church #2, Branham Tabernacle, Jeffersonville, IN
Numerous times he stated, “This picture goes to the Religious Hall of Art.” (50-0820E Believe Ye that I am able to do this Cleveland OH; 51-0718 the Angel of the Lord; 53-0603 God commissioning Moses; 56-0414 Blind Bartimaeus; 61-0212E It is I be not Afraid)
“and that's testimony by the United States government, hangs in the Hall of Fame at Washington, DC, in the hall of religious art:” (53-0508, God Commissioning Moses, Bible Hour Tabernacle, Jonesboro, AR)
He even went as far as to say the picture “is in Washington, DC, in the religious Hall of Art, with a note under it, "The only supernatural being was ever photographed in the history of the world." (63-0606 Show us the Father Tuscon, AZ)
Remember he said were the words from Lacy who examined the picture. Which has nothing like this in the only written statement we have, his report.
I’m sure the hall of fame is exactly what Branham would like, but it hung in neither. There is no Hall of religious art in Washington DC or NY. Why is it not hanging there today? Because there was no such place. The only place its hanging is in Branham’s followers homes and church, those who believe the tales of the supernatural light and bought the picture.
This is a List of museums in Washington, D.C. from Wikipedia.
There are a number of art museums in DC but no religious art museum then, or now. And its not hanging there. Once again Branham tried to make his own reality or maybe he was seeing a vision. The facts negate his words, go check it out yourself and see if it is there now, or was ever there, in a place that no one can find. This is how Branham played it loose with the facts.
Now I want to propose a point. Even if this light is supernatural, it does not prove by any shape of form that it is the pillar of fire that led Israel, which is the glory of God manifested at a certain point in history. In fact the evidence proves it is not. What evidence? The Bible itself.
If this was the same pillar above his head that gave light to Israel at night why did it not light up anything? Why? Think… because it wasn’t the pillar and it wasn’t a light above him.
You can know by their teaching if what someone says and does is of God “How many knows that Jesus went to a Pillar of Fire when He left the earth?” (57-1212, The Door Of The Door, Essex Theater, Newark, NJ)
The Bible does not know this. So how does Branham?
“He changed Himself from--from a Pillar of Fire, to become a Man.” (64-0614M, The Unveiling Of God, Branham Tabernacle, Jeffersonville, IN)
So what you are seeing in the photo is not just a supernatural being - but God in the photo, God in his true form. Yeah, sure you are!
“paper after paper has taken it. We've had it several times in Germany, in Switzerland, and other places where they've taken it, scientifically, in that country, proving that it was a supernatural something, like a Pillar of Fire coming down.” (60-0803, Jehovah-Jireh, Eisenhower High School, Yakima, WA)
A supernatural something? Like a pillar of fire? Branham sounds real sure of himself.
Branham said “It's a little Light, about so big around, amber light burning. And that's the One that always talked to me.” (62-0129, Explaining The Ministry, Ramada Inn, Phoenix, AZ)
A light that talks to him.
So there is a story behind the picture and the facts don’t line up well, especially from Branham’s own mouth.
“He was with Moses in the wilderness, sure.” And he was with Branham your new deliverer, sure he is.
Branham says he was vindicated by an angel of light… think about it, use your Bible.
THINK. An angel of light!