Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mike Bickle and IHOP – The Depths of Deception

Many of the articles that I have written on this subject are quite complicated because they require an extensive knowledge concerning the so-called “prophetic history” of IHOP and the Harp and Bowl prayer movement. I'm going to make today's article simple and direct.

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In 1989 after many of the deviant practices of Mike Bickle's ministry (KCF) were exposed, the church came under the wing of John Wimber and the Vineyard Fellowship. Wimber, who in later years expressed his regret in even becoming involved with the KCF, issued a 15 point memo of items that needed to be corrected.

Point fourteen seemed to be rather Bill Clintonish (“depends on what the meaning of 'is' is.”) where Wimber danced around the issue of restorationism and the five-fold.

14. Calling John Wimber, or others, apostles and prophets verses (sic) using the terms “apostolic leadership” and “prophetic ministry.”

We can see, initially, that Bickle made an effort to make correction in this area.

Here's a quote from Mike Bickle circa 1989, recalling a meeting between “prophet” Bob Jones and Art Katz, a teacher who was involved with KCF:

'That man is a prophet of God' said Katz. 'He told me secrets of my heart which no man could possibly know!' [1]

Fast forward to 1996 and a recollection of the same event in the third printing of “Growing in the Prophetic”

“Mike, this man seems like a prophet of God. He told me the secrets of my heart.” [2]

Reading on in the earlier version of the story, we are later told that Katz “suddenly stood up” and pronounces to Jones that he was a “prophet of God.” By 1996, we have Bickle “suddenly blurting” out to Jones that he was “truly prophetic.”

This is not a case of being picky about minor differences in retelling a story. And to Bickle's credit, he did make an attempt to address point fourteen. But changing the words - quotations- that were once spoken to make them politically correct is the most evil form of historical revisionism.

The Christian concept of repentance involves a change of heart, and a turning away. If you are a murderer and repent, you stop murdering. You do not revise your past history and say “yes, I beat that man very severely” when you actually killed him. You tell the truth and add the disclaimer "but I now see that murder was wrong."

The instance I have cited above is just one of dozens, perhaps hundreds, of similar revisions. Because the IHOP movement is so fascinated with their own so-called prophetic history, there are multiple stories (and versions) of heavenly visitations to leaders of the movement where God spoke and gave direction. In the same manner as the simple story above, it can be demonstrated, through comparing various documents and teaching tapes, that Mike Bickle will take the same liberties and revise even what he says are the very words of God- to suit the circumstance. We may question whether God even spoke, but it is presumptious  to change those words that supposedly were spoken to make one look good.

This is a movement with deception at it heart.
Therefore, it has not been created in the image of God.

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Please be sure to click on the COMMENTS link below.

[1] Pytches, David. Some Said It Thundered. Second impression, 1990. Hodder and Stoughton, London. (UK edition).

[2] Bickle, Mike. Growing In the Prophetic.. Third printing 1996. Creation House, Lake Mary, Fl.


  1. When we aim to expose what is at the core of aberrant teaching inevitably we will find that truth is being twisted, stretched, spun, or otherwise altered in someway. This is somehow tolerated, or excused or rationalized because some purer or higher reality is being served. But this is not the way of God, or the way of the Scriptures. Both the ends and the means must be righteous. Words have meanings and they can't be altered to protect the 'reputation' of so called prophets, visionaries and self-appointed apostles.

    When a movement alleging 'divine' authority to operate on a national even global level can be clearly and convincingly demonstrated to consistently bend and or otherwise 'revise' history it's days are numbered.

    Brother - you have pulled on a thread and it's just a matter of time before the entire cloth comes unwound and the entire spurious paradigm of angelic visitations, and bridal romance, apostolic posturing, prophetic meandering and hyper eschatological power tripping comes completely undone. On that day, which can't be far off, we will see that the emperor has no clothes.

    But I pray most of all for mercy to the deceived and those of good intentions who have been led astray by thirty years of deception.

  2. In case this went over the heads of the readers of the blog- the preceeding comment is what true prophetic ministry - forthetelling - is all about. Please heed these admonitions.

  3. By 2002 John Wimber had died, Bickle had parted ways with Vineyard, and the term "Prophet" was becoming more acceptable in Charismatic Circles.

    Therefore, it is interesting to note that in the 2002 "Prophetic history" tapes Mike Bickle quotes both himself and Art Katz as calling Bob Jones a prophet. This was integral to their story, as Bob Jones has previously prophesied that they would accpet him on the day of these exclaimations.

    Trust no one who will alter quotes for expediencies sake.

  4. I thought Art Katz spoke out AGAINST the whole prophetic movement?? He has teachings stating so. Is it possible he later distanced himself from them?


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