"They did not hire a neutral 3rd party to investigate. They hired a team of defense lawyers. They literally retained one of the most prestigious, aggressive, and expensive defense law firms in Kansas City, and nationwide. There is nothing objective about it. Everything will remain confidential. These victims are going to be completely railroaded and they sold it to their congregation as accountability." - Kansas City Attorney and IHOP Congregant Jesi Stanley
I wanted to lead this devotional off with a word from someone directly on the front lines of IHOP. I am obviously removed from it as is the man I will be responding to today, Steven Strang of Charisma News. The best we can do is speak to what facts are known, apply the bible hopefully, and make logical conclusions. Mrs. Stanley on the other hand attends IHOP and is a lawyer. She knows the lawyers that IHOP has retained for the sham investigation they are pretending to conduct regarding the many allegations of spiritual and sexual abuse from the founder of IHOP, Mike Bickle. They have spent what I can only assume are monies given for the business of Christ and paid one of the most aggressive defense attorneys in Kansas City, with a nationwide reputation. They had promised to hire an independent third party, sold their sheep a bunch of lies regarding accountability and then lawyered up so the cover-up could begin. It is sad and transparent but not nearly as disgusting as the link above from Strang. Now, I guess Strang can do this as he owns Charisma News but to do it with the veneer of just being a folksy journalist interested in the truth is shameful. As we walk through this sewage, realize the sole purpose of this is to protect his good friend by disparaging the former IHOP leaders as being driven by grievance against Bickle and the accusations as being a demonic attack, which naturally leave the victims as liars. He offers up revisionist history and absurd examples to try and prove his point. Is it any wonder why no victim wants to trust this leadership? Is it any wonder why women do not come forward when abused? Let us reason once more together beloved as this should make every true believer's blood boil. The damage to the cause of Christ is immense. Never lose sight of the fact that IHOP is a cesspool of false theology to begin with and God is bringing things to light now to deal with it.
"Today we will be looking at the report regarding the very serious accusations against Mike Bickle. It appears as if he has been exonerated. Now, its not quite that simple. There's all kinds of nuances and we are going to talk about that today. Full disclosure, I have been a friend of Mike Bickle for many years since around 1990. I have personally supported his ministry since IHOP KC started in 1999. Before that he was a local pastor in KC. It is important that there be a thorough investigation and the first part of it is now complete. We try to get to the truth, and we need to take these allegations seriously. But there are such a thing as wrong allegations. It's no secret that there have been church fights. No secret that certain ministries, that certain people have tried to take them over or even destroy them and as we go through this, I think you will see sort of a pattern." - Steven Strang
Exonerated??? Wow, beloved this should tell you all you need to know about the absolute shell of a human being that Steven Strang is. Even this bogus report does not conclude that Bickle is exonerated! The report is issued by the same compromised leadership and hired gun lawyers previously discussed. Its only purposes were to cast shade at the victims, discourage anyone from future accusations, protect Bickle, and be leveraged to excuse not getting an independent outside agency to properly investigate. Their absurd premise is they can't waste the IHOP money until they themselves verify credibility of the charges. That is what the outside agency is for! They had money to spend to secure this prestigious law firm but not to pay someone who is objective, right. And Strang just shills for them to protect his admitted good buddy Bickle. This is not nuanced Steve. You are making it that by introducing ridiculous speculation about what "might" have occurred to convince people it had. Up until these allegations, the three former IHOP leaders were nothing but respected members of the community but now they are "church fighting?" Now they are harboring wrong allegations? The inference Strang wants to make is clear. These three people, one of which was the former pastor at IHOP Forerunner Church, had secretly wanted to take over or destroy IHOPKC. Strang has not one shred of proof and offers none. He clearly does not care about the truth, Jesus Christ, or these women. He is abusing his platform to reach a national audience to sell this garbage to. Do not buy it.
"Earlier this year, Bickle got over 5 million people around the world to sign up to pray for Israel. It also shows his level of influence. I believe what happened is related to that. It's a spiritual attack. It's spiritual warfare. I could tell very early that something was not right. First of all Mike did not really defend himself. Second of all, other victims did not come out of the woodwork. In fact , exactly the opposite. Usually when there is a scandal, other people come out of the woodwork. Also, he did not confess. Usually when people get caught they go ahead and just confess and get into a defensive mode. None of that happened." - Steven Strang
Ahhh, so it must have been Colonel Mustard in the Conservatory with the wrench. Strang is playing spiritual clue here. It is lazy at best but insidious at worst to actually blame the actions of Mike Bickle on the devil but realize that is not what he is doing here. He is blaming the victims for being demonically used by the devil to falsely bring these accusations. So, follow this reasoning. Mike Bickle somehow singlehandedly got five million people to pray for Israel and the devil in response, managed to convince three former IHOP leaders in good standing to gather false accusations from at least eight women, to what? Tarnish Mike Bickle? Mike Bickle and IHOP are already in league with the devil! The 24-hour prayer has resulted in spiritual mysticism practices. Those that escape IHOP tell of horrific cult abuse suffered. You have the Bethany Deaton murder, the pastor who sexually abused a teenager being defended, the bridal paradigm, and Jesus as my lover worship music, just to name a few examples off the top of my head. Not only did Mike not defend himself, as you know, innocent people do. He has not even denied the accusations publicly! Yet this is presented by Strang as a positive? He then pontificates that because other victims were not clamoring to be further abused by IHOP leadership that it must mean there is something wrong with those that were brave enough to? Just sickening.