The Cloud Hoax Story

By Pastor Reckart

William Branham lied..

William Branham claims that on 2/28/1963 he was up in Sabino Canyon 40 miles northeast of Tucson, when he was visited by seven angels who descended to him in the form of an inverted pyramid "V". When they departed be claimed a circular cloud appeared over him and it gradually rose higher and higher going up to the level of 140,000 feet. He made reference to this mystery cloud in a sermon "Rising of the Sun" preached in Jeffersonville on 4/18/1965. This is over two years from the time the mystery cloud appeared.

Here are some facts:

Branham claimed these seven angles instructed him to go back to Jeffersonville, it was time to reveal the seven seals. The visit by the angels was also the cause of an alleged blast so loud and strong that hugh bolders rolled down mountain sides where Branham was at. According to Fred Sothman, a Canadian who moved to Tucson in 1962 to be near Branham, he, Branham and Gene Norman were up in the mountains hunting Javelina when these angels supposedly came to Branham.

Here is Branham's quote:

"Brother Branham said: Science took the picture all the way from Mexico as it moved from northern Arizona, where the Holy Spirit said I would be standing (forty miles northeast of Tucson). And it went into the air, and "Life" magazine packed the pictures: a mystic something way in the spheres there there can be no moisture, where there can be no evaporations of anything, thirty miles high and twenty-seven miles across and coming right up from where those Angels were. RISING.OF.THE.SUN_ JEFF.IN V-3 N-12 SUNDAY_ 65-0418M".

Branham lied! The cloud as he said went right up from where those angels were and he alleged it was the same cloud that appeared the same evening at sundown ovehead in Flagstaff, 190 miles to the North. It is very clear that the mystery cloud that "did" appear over Flagstaff on the evening of 2/28/1963 continued moving in a west to east direction at the 140,000 ft elevation . It appeared such even 28 minutes after sundown. Its shape over this half an hour time changed drastically until it looked like a hangman's noose. Since the mystery cloud was moving in the normal direction of the high winds at that height, and since Branham claimed the cloud went up in the air, we can assume the cloud acted like all other normal vapor or smoke clouds in association to wind direction and speed. There were no winds of any speed on 2/28/1963 that was blowing vapor or smoke clouds from Tucson toward Flagstaff on this date. Branham did not claim the angels went up to 140,000 feet and left a circle cloud. He did not say he saw the angels fly to the north toward Flagstaff and somewhere in that direction released or caused this circle cloud. He said the cloud went right up from where those angels were that visited him. This means the circle cloud had to rise up over Sabino Canyon, continue on rising higher and higher until it was at the 140,000 elevation. And then, in order for it to be overhead in Flagstaff at 1840 MST, it had to travel 190 miles in a short time. Branham lied, Sothman lied, and Gene Norman lied.

Here is a man who claimed such a dynamic visitation with blast and a miracle circle cloud and yet his conduct soon afterward was not at all the least affected. The stories do not match. Sothman said they were up there hunting javelina. Branham claimed different. He claimed in his message at Jeffersonville on 3/17/1963 the following:

"One early morning."
"I got up into Sabino Canyon."
"I want to be honest."
"I'm more inclined to believe that it was a vision."

"I had my hands out saying,: Lord, what does this blast mean, and what does these seven angels in a constellation of, of the pyramid, picking me up from off the ground and turning me eastward: what does it mean?"

If he saw a vision how is there then a natural cloud of some sort that pops outside the vision and becomes real and floats to Flagstaff 190 miles away in les then an hour?

In his message, Branham then goes into a strange account of holding a King's sword.

He makes no mention of Sothman or Norman being with him on this trip.

He makes no mention of hunting javelina.

He makes no mention of THE CLOUD!

The story Sothman concocted years later is a lie. He claims the Cloud and angels visited Branham when they were on a hunting trip together and Branham claimed he was alone when the blast and cloud appeared. Who is lying here?

Here are some more facts.

Branham claimed he he went up to the mountain early in the morning. He claims the cloud appeared early that same morning. Yet according to recorded facts about the mystery cloud, it was being blown by 130mph winds at the 140,000 foot height going from due West to due East, AND IT WAS 6:40pm in the evening right at sundown when it was passing over Flagstaff 190 miles north of Tucson. No winds were blowing from Sabino Canyon toward Flagstaff, South to North, at any height that day.

Branham made a big deal of this mystery cloud when he discovered it via newspapers and magazines. He used this cloud and his claim it was caused by seven angles who visited him, to make him look more the prophet Elijah. He placed a lot of emphasis on this mystery cloud until he boasted of it a whole year before he was killed on Christmass eve by a drunk driver in Texas. He came out with this claim the cloud was made by the angels in his message dated 4/18/65. He was to live just over eight months after this message!

Here are some more things to think about:

If anyone else had such an encounter with seven angels and a blast so violent it shook rocks off mountains, it would be something you soon told. The next time you were before a congregation you would mention it. Especially if the angels picked you up by the hair of your head and turned you eastward.

The first message Branham preached after the mystery cloud appeared on 2/28/63, was in Houston, Texas on 3/04/1963. You can read the transcript of this message over and over and not find any mention of the CLOUD or ANGELS or BLAST that shook rocks down mountain sides. Now 2/28/1963 was on a Thrusday. He went back home that day and told no one. Get that, he told no one about what he supposedly had experienced, not even his wife! He did not call anyone and tell them, not a single member of the 600 size congregation there. He went to bed that night and got up Friday (April 1) and departed for Houston, Texas. He arrived in Houston on Sunday April 3rd. On Monday, April 4th he preached his sermon "A Absolute" Get that, four days after this explosive encounter and the cloud he is preaching in Houston and NEVER MENTIONS THESE THINGS!

He departed from Houston and NEVER TOLD A SOUL!

Branham then goes to Jeffersonville where he preached on 3/17/63 "God Hiding." He again MENTIONS NOTHING OF THE CLOUD!

He preached on 3/17; 3/18; 3/19; 3/20; 3/21; 3/22; 3/23; and 3/24 in Jeffersonville revealing the seven seals. In his message entitled The Breach Between The Seven Church Ages And The Seven Seals (63-0317E) he mentions the seven angels and the pyramid shape of their descent. He NEVER MENTIONS THE CLOUD. All he mentions is the V shape of the angels as he says they appeared to him.

The facts are clear. Branham did not make use of the mystery cloud until after he learned of it whenit was published in Science Magazine on April 19, 1963. Branham did not discover this magazine until many months after it came out. It was the article in Life Magazine on May 17, 1963 that the cloud first caught his attention and he made use of it. All the pictures of the mystery cloud used by Branhamites come from the stories in these magazines. Branham outright lied when he said this cloud is the same one he claims the seven angels made when they came and departed from him.

The fact is, this cloud is not a vapor cloud at all. It is a cloud of smoke and the remains of rocket fuel from a Thor rocket that had been launched the afternood of 2/28/1963 at 1:52PST at Vandenburg, California. The rocket was blown up at 147,000 feet because of a malfunction. At this height there was a west to east wind blowing around 130mph. The smoke from the explosion formed the circle shaped cloud. The jet stream winds carried the cloud due east from Vandenburg toward Flagstaff, Arizona. Because of some lower clouds this one was not observed in Arizona until around sunset. The cloud remained sunlit for 28 minutes after official sundown in Flagstall. Giving account for the curvature of the earth and it being seen as far away as Elpasso, Texas it was estimated to be 140,000-147,000 feet high exactly on the same level as the smoke and vaporized rocket fuel of the destroyed Thor rocket.

The issue is always made out that water vapor does not exist at this height because it is between -40 and -60 degrees. It is claimed that because it is not natural for such a cloud at this height except over the Arctic (nacreous clouds). Therefore it is a miracle cloud and angels visiting Branham created it. Reports from all the magazines and from James McDonald are used to prove the cloud is a miracle cloud and has no earthly explanation. From this a leap is made to say this verifies and validifies Branham's claim it was created when the angels visited him 40 miles north of Tucson.

As stated already, there was no wind blowing from Tucson toward Flagstaff that day at any elevation. And do not tell me the angels carried the cloud 190 miles north and then released it to then be blown further East by the West jet stream.

The cloud hoax is another of Branham's lies. It is another lie still used by Branhamites to make his false doctrines acceptable by means of these miracles.

Branham lied. The mystery cloud came from the explosion of a rocket, not by seven angels.

The fact that Branham did not mention this cloud BEFORE he learned of it from newspapers and magazines, is easily seen. If he had mentioned this cloud in his Houston trip we could come better believing him. He did not and to me this translates that he never saw this cloud and he never saw these alleged angels forming a cloud.

Pastor Reckart