Updated May 31, 2010
Updated June 13, 2010
This is the first in an ongoing series on the recently recovered recording of Mike Bickle's seminal sermon "Blow The Trumpet in Zion." It was recorded in the early days of the Kansas City Fellowship, five weeks after the appearance of Prophet Bob Jones. The night before this address God gave Mike Bickle a call to gather a solemn assembly. Although a critical document concerning Bickle's IHOP movement, it had dropped off the radar, perhaps because it reveals failed prophecy and bad doctrine.
I am presently transcribing this message and will make that transcription available at a future date. Please join in to the discussion of this critical sermon. I don't have all the answers but I think it is worth the effort to discover the true significance of it.
There are (at least) two schools of thought about the man-child of Revelation. The more orthodox view is that the man-child is Jesus (who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter). Those subscribing to the Manifested Sons of God doctrine believe that the man-child is the victorious, over-coming church that has attained full maturity.
Mike Bickle in "Blow the Trumpet" states (in 1983) "I believe that this is the generation that God has ordained before the beginning of the world to usher in the presence of His Son." Note the similarities between this and the Jehovah Witnesses who said that Jesus would return in 1974, and after 1974 revised that prediction to state that Jesus's presence had returned in 1974.
This, of course, is a blatent contraction of God's Word, in which Jesus states: "Behold, I am with you always." His presence cannot return; it never left.
You say, well maybe Mike meant the actual physical return of Christ. Did he? He quotes a friend as saying: “Mike” he said, “We’re going to keep our appointment with destiny.” He says “It’s unavoidable; it’s before us.”
So the question is "What is that appointment that WE are going to keep?" A related question is "has a generation passed since 1983?"
It is also possible, even likely that Bickle embraces the MSoG teachings and a literal, physical return of Christ. The two thoughts are not necessarily mutually-exclusive.
Mike helps us along by telling is that the setting in which the "precious baby Jesus came into the earth" is the "same setting in which he will give His Son the second time."
Keep in mind that Mike is keenly aware of the imagery of Revelation 12, which speaks of the woman, "being with child" and later of that child being born. He will speak of that later.
And so he proceeds to lay the foundation that "Luke 1 and 2, in my opinion, become the most prophetic chapters in the New Testament of the coming revival." And so Bickle's entire theology rests on the private interpetation that Luke 1 and 2 is eschatological in nature. But to Bickle, perhaps the "coming revival" is the same as the coming of the Lord. Or not.
He further states "The prophecy that was true at his first coming is surely true at his second coming." The nagging question is this - is the second coming of Christ simply a literal return, or does include some MSoG-esque great end-time revival when the church attains "full maturity?"
This is the premier statement of this generation: Nothing will be impossible to the person that believes." -Mike Bickle, 1983
A major premise of the MSoG teaching is that we will become god-like - we will attain immortality, and nothing will be impossible. We will take back dominion of the earth; we will rule and reign. All of this before the resurrection.
The teaching also posits that there will be a great confrontation in the church, as the true believers triumph over the nominal believers. Bickle again:
Many will fall because of this thing, because their hearts are not truly God’s, they’re in the church only in terms of sitting on a pew on Sunday morning."
Many of them sit on church on Sunday morning and they will rise, because they will receive. He said it will be a sign that will be opposed throughout the whole earth.
The move of God that’s coming will have great opposition because in verse 35, it says the-the end of this is that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed when the move of God comes. Because you see when God’s move comes, there is a confrontation.
Verse 35 speaks of a sword- we don't know if it is a literal sword that "pierces the souls," but one of Bickle's associates, Bob Jones, has often spoken of the coming "Civil War in the church," which is portrayed as a literal bloody slaughter.
But I digress. The question is this - does Mike Bickle teach MSoG? I'll let Mike answer this for himself - he will "stake his reputation" on it.
I am saying this with every ounce of my reputation on this. If I am wrong, as a young man I am ruining my future with what I am going to say. I'm risking everything that I have, I am going out to the nth degree on this statement. And this tape, I am sure, because you're going to be the ones doing it, we are going to take it to every part of this city. So my entire future is based upon this statement. God will move in a new way in this city at the end of that 21 days.
The full-grown child won't be but for three years, but the baby will be born. Dreams and vision will begin to come. The Spirit of prayer will begin to fall. Prayer groups will gather everywhere. Supernatural wisdom will come all over
this city. Signs and wonders will begin. It will be small, beginning, people will begin to be saved at a much higher rate, it will be small, but it will begin and increase, increase. And in a three year period, according, I don't know this, but according to which I believe, it will be a mature man, a mature young man, a strong man, the young child that will be born.
-Mike Bickle "Blow the Trumpet in Zion" 4-17-1983 (Part 2 at 41:50)
Elsewhere in the tape, Bickle explains "in other words, the (city-wide) revival would be in full scale in three years." Regardless, a very strange way of wording things. However, it is worth pointing out that Bickle (at 41:50) was essentially quoting Bob Jones, whom he refused to identify on the tape. (See "Some Said it Thundered" by Pytches for more on this). Jones, whose "new-breed" teachings are hardcore MSoG, very much shaped and influenced the early days of the Kansas City Fellowship.
A faithful reader has pointed out that in Mike Bickle's contemporary series on the book of Revelation Mike (now) states that the male Child is Jesus. see page 3. So the question is, in 1983, did Mike Bickle believe that Jesus was going to return in 1986? Or did he believe in some sort of JW-esque return of His presence? Or was he actually, despite his current denials, teaching MSoG in 1983?
We will continute to look at this document, which indeed is foundational in IHOP beliefs and practices. If Mike Bickle today states "Some uphold the false teaching (MSoG) that in this age believers can have faith that will enable them to attain to qualities of life that are reserved only for believers in the resurrection," then he is clearly denying a current connection with the MSoG heresy. On the otherhand, there can be no doubt that the IHOP orginization has an unhealthy emphasis on dominionsim.
Listen to "Blow the Trumpet in Zion" on the Internet Archive.