David Koresh: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

David Koresh was one of the most infamous cult leaders of the 20th century.  Over the decade-long period he served as leader of an apocalyptic religious sect called the Branch Davidians, Koresh amassed hundreds of followers, some of whom are still awaiting his “resurrection”.

But why did Koresh believe he was Jesus, to begin with? And what has become of his followers since he was killed at age 33 in the 51-day standoff between law enforcement and cult members in Waco, Texas?

ABC’s newest documentary, Truth & Lies: Waco, will examine the 1993 Waco siege that resulted in the deaths of 76 people. The film includes interviews with FBI and ATF agents involved in the raid, as well as interviews with some of Koresh’s former worshippers.

Read on to learn more about David Koresh.


1. His Mother Gave Birth to Him at Age 14

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American actor Tim Daly (in character as Branch Davidian leader David Koresh) holds a Bible close to his chest on the set of the TV movie ‘In the line of fire: Ambush in Waco’ on location, Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1993.

David Koresh was born into a troubled family in Houston, Texas, in 1959. His mother, Bonnie Haldeman, was a single mother and just 14 when she gave birth to him.

In a 2008 interview with Texas Monthly, Haldeman opened up about her son’s personality growing up. “… he had a hard time in school,” she admitted. “The first few grades, they said he had a learning disability. He was in special classes when we lived in Richardson. But he was always wanting to learn and explore. He asked a lot of questions. He used to say he stuttered, but I never heard him stutter…When he was twelve or thirteen, he started reading the Bible and listening to radio preachers.”

Although he ultimately decided to drop out his freshman year, Koresh’s fascination with the Bible lingered. By age 18, he’d reportedly memorized both the New and Old Testaments.

According to PBS, Koresh joined the Church of Seventh Day Adventists when he was 20, but was expelled because he was a “bad influence on young people”. In 1981, after a failed attempt at becoming a rock star in Hollywood, he relocated to Waco and joined the Branch Davidians.

The roots of the Branch Davidians trace back to 1935, when a man named Victor Houteff, who believed he was a messenger of God, took 12 of his followers to Mount Carmel, Texas, and set up what was meant to be a “temporary gathering place”, according to CNN.

Houteff’s group was initially an offshoot of the Seventh-day Adventists. In 1942, however, he renamed the group the Davidian Seventh-Day Adventists. For 20 years, Houteff and the Branch Davidians occupied Mt. Carmel. During that time, their following increased to approximately 10,000. In 1955, when Houteff passed, leadership was passed on to his wife, Florence.


2. He Was Involved in Many Sexual Relationships with Young Girls

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GettyAttorney Dick DeGuerin (C) is mobbed by photographers as he leaves his hotel on March 31, 1993 for his fourth face-to-face meeting in three days with Branch Davidian leader David Koresh at the cult compound. DeGuerin spent six hours at the compound 30 March in an attempt to end the 32-day standoff. After a shootout in Waco in 1993 that killed four federal agents and six members of the Branch Davidian religious sect, authorities negotiated with cult leader David Koresh for 51 days. On the final day, 19 April 1993, a few hours after a government tank rammed the cult’s wooden fortress, the siege ended in a fiery blaze, killing Koresh and 80 of his followers.

Over the years, Koresh had many children by many different women within the Branch Davidians. One of his first sexual relationships was with Lois Roden, the prophetess and leader of the religious sect. Roden was 65 at the time; Koresh was in his early 20s.

In 1984, Koresh claimed that God instructed him to marry Rachel Jones, who was 14. Rachel was the daughter of two of Koresh’s devoted followers, Perry and Mary Belle Jones. Together, Jones and Koresh had one son and one daughter.

After being monogamous for two years, Koresh says God told him to create a new House of David and have many wives. One of those wives became Rachel’s little sister, Michelle Jones, who was just 12.

Having a sexual relationship with a 12-year-old put Koresh in violation of state law. In 1992, Texas Child Protection Services examined the case for six months, but were unable to find convincing evidence of a sexual relationship. It is believed that part of the reason no evidence was found was because the Branch Davidians did a good job of hiding evidence of the marriage; they also gave Michelle a surrogate husband, David Thibodeau.

Kiri Jewell, a former follower of Koresh, says she was just ten when he forced her to perform sexual acts on him. Jewell spoke at a congressional hearing on the Waco tragedy, where she revealed what she and other children were subject to while living on the compound. During the hearing, Kiri said that she was molested by Koresh and afterward “stayed in the shower for maybe an hour,” according to the Chicago Tribune.

In her testimony, Jewell described Koresh as “a man of absolute unparalleled evil intent”. She said that children on at Mount Carmel were “taught to kill themselves by putting a gun in their mouth and pulling the trigger,” according to The Chicago Tribune. After the 1993 Waco seize, Kiri’s father, David Jewell, removed her from the Branch Davidians, and eventually won custody of Kiri.


3. He Told His Followers He Was the Messiah

Koresh told his followers he was God’s prophet. Speaking to ABC, Mary Garafolo, a journalist who covered the siege at Waco, said, “He claimed that when he was a child, God had spoken to him and said, ‘You’re the chosen one. You are my messiah.’”

Whether or not Koresh believed he really was the messiah is up for debate. In conversations with an FBI negotiator, PBS reports Koresh as being asked about his identity.  At one point, the investigator asks, “And so you are now claiming clearly and simply that you are the Christ.” Koresh answers, “I am saying that no man can know me nor my father unless they open their book and give a fair chance in honesty and equity to see the seals.”

In 1990, Koresh legally changed his name from Vernon Wayne Howell (his birth name) to David Koresh “for publicity and business purposes,” according to court documents obtained by PBS. The outlet reports him as telling the FBI that the new name meant death, and then that it was a surname from God.


4. Taylor Kitsch Will Play Him in a Miniseries Coming out Later This Month

Friday Night Lights star Taylor Kitsch will play Koresh in a six-part miniseries based on the Waco siege. The show is set to be released on the Paramount Network on January 24, 2018.

Waco will star Kitsch alongside Michael Shannon as Gary Noesner, Melissa Benoist as Rachel Koresh, Julia Garner as Michelle Jones, and John Leguizamo as Robert Rodriguez.

Waco was initially executively produced by Weinstein Television. In November, however, Deadline reported that the Weinstein name had been removed from the credits of the second trailer. According to the outlet, Paramount Network removed Harvey Weinstein’s name as executive producer on all of their projects.


5. His Mother Was Stabbed to Death in 2009 and Her Sister Was Charged with the Murder

In January 2009, David Koresh’s mother, Bonnie Clark Haldeman, was found stabbed to death in a rural area of Houston. Her sister, Beverly Clark, was charged with her murder.

In July, Clark’s niece, Hollie Helrigel, told the Athens Review that Beverly had a long history of mental illness. Helrigel said she remembered Haldeman coming to Clark’s aid on a number of occasions.

Haldeman, 64 at the time of her death, was the author of a 2007 autobiography titled “Memories of the Branch Davidians: The Autobiography of David Koresh’s Mother.” In her 2009 interview with Texas Monthly, Haldeman revealed that she visited Koresh a number of times on the compound. She said she fell in love with the people who lived at Mount Carmel. She also reflected on a time when one of the negotiators asked her whether or not she believed she could talk her son into coming out of the building during the 51-day siege in Waco. “I had been in many situations when David said God told him to wait and—even if we were supposed to go somewhere—we waited. Because, you know, if God told David to wait, we’re not going anywhere. So if God tells David to come out, he’ll come out, but he’s not going to come out just because Momma says to come out.”

9 Comments

9 Comments

JOHN MAYOR

Although I have not seen the mini-series, I would suggest a better ending would be to include an introduction to the witnessing of the WACO events, by Timothy McVeigh!… and the casting of Timothy, must be spot-on!
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Please!… no emails!… Jesus is Lord!

JOHN MAYOR

If you would like to pray for an end to Heavy.com’s breach of
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Human Digital Rights, then place your fingers on the circles!
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Please!… no emails!… Jesus is Lord!
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P.S.: I would ask you to pray at the top, bottom, or a quarter past or before the top or bottom of the hour!

Young Christan's mother

Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law

CHRIST HAS REDEEMED us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us.
What was that curse?
It is recorded in Deuteronomy, chapter 28, where we are told that the following
diseases came upon the people because of disobedience to God’s law: pestilence,
consumption (or tuberculosis), fever, inflammation, extreme burning, botch, emerods, scab, itch, blindness, smiting in the knee and in the leg, and failing of the eyes.
If your case has not been definitely stated in this list, then listen to verses 60-61 of
this chapter: all the diseases of Egypt, and also every sickness and every disease which is not written in the book of this law.
These words include you and your case, Redeemed from Curses.
Paul says that Christ redeemed us from this curse of the law, because he was made a curse for us. The curse of the law includes all diseases, every sickness, and every plague known throughout the history of the world.

In order for Christ to redeem us from this terrible curse of the law, He was made a
curse for us; that is, He bore for us the punishment prescribed by the law. That is why He had to take our infirmities, and bear our sicknesses.
Adam and Eve sold us into slavery to the devil and put us in bondage to his power,
under his jurisdiction. But Christ has redeemed us. He has bought us back.
He has purchased us with the price of His own body and blood, and freed us. You are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
Abundant Life
What a thrill to know that God so loved us that He paid a great price for our
redemption. He gave His Son as our substitute, who assumed our guilt, bore our
judgment and endured our condemnation, in order to absolve us of all debt and obligation to Satan’s regime, so that we could be restored to God as though no sin had ever been committed. He legally redeemed us. He proved how much He values us and wants to be able to share His best with us – His abundant life.
God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son.
That was the kind of love we cannot understand God’s love.
Salvation is your emancipation from everything outside God’s will for humankind.
Now you can act accordingly. You may speak the language of a winner.
Confess your freedom, instead of your bondage. Confess: With his stripes, I am healed, instead of your sickness. Confess your redemption from all disease. Confess that your redemption is complete – from sin and sickness.
Confess that Satan’s dominion over you ended at Calvary, because it was there that
God freed you. God’s word states all of this, so confess it.
Slaves Set Free
When the slaves in the United States were emancipated, they were still living in slaves’ quarters. They still looked like slaves. They still felt like slaves. But when they heard the Emancipation Proclamation read, they had a legal right to say, “I am free,” and to act on that liberty.
Believe in your proclamation of freedom: Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which
Christ has made us free

You are free. Confess that. Tell the devil that you have found the truth. He has
known it all the time, but has lied to you and blinded your eyes to it. He has kept you
from knowing your legal rights in Christ, your redeemer. The god of this world (Satan)
has blinded the minds of them which believe not.
Tell Satan you have found the truth – the truth that sets you free from him. Let him
know, by your confession of God’s word, that you are free from his dominion and that you know it.
The statement, He (Jesus) has borne our griefs (sicknesses), and carried our sorrows (diseases), is God’s check for your perfect healing. Endorse that check with your confession, and perfect health will be manifested in your body.
An End to Chronic Ailments
The diseases of your body were laid on Jesus. You need never bear them, because He has borne them for you. All you need to do is believe this and begin to confess it.
Refuse to allow sickness to stay in your body, because you were healed with His (Jesus’) stripes.
If Christians would believe this, it would be the end of so-called chronic ailments in
their bodies. Always remember: Satan is a deceiver, a liar.
Sickness, disease, sin, and infirmities, all were laid on Christ. He bore them. He
carried them away, leaving us free and well. We should rejoice in this liberty of ours.
Redemption has not become a reality to many. It has been only a theory, a doctrine,
or a creed. Satan has taken advantage of this lack of understanding.
We are redeemed from all the power of Satan. That means we are bought back from
the hand of the enemy. We are born again. We are the new creation. We are freed
from the kingdom of darkness. We are no longer slaves of Satan. Sin and sickness no longer rule over us.
You are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit,
which are God’s.
No Trespassing
How can you glorify God in your body when it is weakened by disease? It is just as
impossible to glorify God properly in your body when it is full of sickness as it is to glorify God in your spirit when it is full of sin.

Tell the devil, “Satan, you are a liar. You know I am redeemed, because I have
accepted Jesus as my redeemer. I am no longer dwelling on your territory, and you have no legal right to trespass on my property. It is no longer yours, neither is it under your jurisdiction. I have been redeemed from your authority by Jesus Christ.”
Say to your enemy, “This sickness you have put on me was cursed on the cross of
Calvary for me, and you know that I do not have to bear it. I command you, in Jesus
Christ’s name, to leave my body. I am free from your curse, for it is written: With his
stripes, I am healed, so I am healed. God said so. Satan, you are a liar; your pains are lies, your symptoms are lies, and your words are lies. You are the father of lies, Jesus said you are.” Then, thank the Lord for your deliverance.
Satan knows all of that. It is only when he knows that you have discovered it that he
must respect your words. So few realize that they are free from the dominion of Satan. He knows it, but until you discover it, he will continue his assault on your life. Many have died prematurely because they have not known their rights in Christ.
Crucified, Buried, and Raised With Christ
When Jesus was crucified, we were crucified with Him. I am crucified with Christ.
When Jesus was buried, we were buried with him.
When Jesus arose from the grave as conqueror, we arose with Him. He has quickened us together with Christ; and has raised us up together in Christ.
When Jesus went back to the throne and sat on the right hand of God, (He) made us
sit together (with Him) in heavenly places.
We are his (God’s) workmanship, created in Christ Jesus. Through Jesus Christ, God
made us what we are – a new creation.
If any one be in Christ, that person is a new creature; old things are passed away;
behold, all things are become new.
We are now a new creature, made in the likeness of God, through the power of Jesus
Christ. God gives us His nature, His love, His faith, His life, His Spirit, His power. We
are re-created.
All that Jesus did was for us. Everything He conquered was for us. He had no need
to conquer Satan for Himself.
He had no sins of His own to carry away, because He had no sin until He took our sins
He did this for us.
He had no need to put away sickness for Himself, because He had no sickness until He
was made sick for us. He did this for us. He conquered for us; and now that we are
recreated in Christ Jesus and are made partakers with Him, we become conquerors
through Him.
In all these things, Paul says, we are more than conquerors, through him that loved us.
All Was for Us
All that Jesus did was for us, and we are now partakers of His victory.
We were captives, but Christ has freed us from captivity.
We were cursed by sin and sickness; but Christ, our redeemer, has freed us from that
curse and loosed us from its dominion.
We were weak, but the Lord has become our strength, so now we are strong.
We were bound and imprisoned, but Christ has freed us from slavery.
We were sick, but Christ has home our sicknesses and carried them away, so now, with his stripes we are healed.
Remember, you were slaves of Satan. You were bound by sin and sin’s penalty,
sickness. You were subject to Satan’s authority. But now you are free. You now have
Christ’s emancipation proclamation – the Bible – and it is YOURS.
Do not be a slave any longer. Do like the slaves in the United Sates did when they
heard their Emancipation Proclamation read: Claim your liberty; act on your deliverance.
You are free. Shout your freedom. Confess your freedom. Believe in your freedom.
Redemption is a fact. Act on your liberty. Your bondage is past. Your prison is open.
Your freedom is granted.
The Spirit of the Lord God is on me; because the Lord has anointed me to preach good tidings to the meek; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captive, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound.20 Moffatt’s Translation reads: to tell prisoners they are free, to tell captives they are released.
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This article is written by an evangelist of God brother Xaviour,,
I want all Americans to hang this on your walls ,,it is a blessing to us from God,,and you should read it tell your children to read it ,,
God bless all Americans.
God bless Xaviour brother.

JOHN MAYOR

There’s a “‘comment’ logger” on this site who goes by the name, BlowsSatan (or B.S., for short!), who thinks and acts like a troubled child! If you, and your CHRISTIAN FRIENDS have a moment, I’d ask that you ask the Lord to end his abuses!… and, in the name of Jesus Christ! Thanks!
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Please!… no emails!… Jesus is Lord!

JOHN MAYOR

Well!… if you could only think, and, were being directed by God’s Holy Spirit, you wouldn’t be Nettrolling around like an IMBECILE causing HAVOC with Heavy’s GROWNS!… would you! Jesus Christ doesn’t behave in the sad manner that you’ve displayed at Heavy!… and he doesn’t TEMPT PEOPLE TO SIN! But you could CARE LESS, and would rather HARASS and DISRUPT, instead of participating in a GROWNUP DISCUSSION about the issue being debated! And so!… it’s impossible to take you SERIOUSLY! And because… and simply put!… you are not a SERIOUS THINKER! You’re SILLY, HARASSING, and DISRUPTIVE!… and that’s not the sign of a GROWNUP!!
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Please!… no emails!… Jesus is Lord!

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