This is an email I received and I wanted to share it with my readers. You’ve heard the story before, but every person’s testimony is meaningful and helpful in opening the eyes of others ensnared in this movement. Thank you for entrusting me with your story.
My story is similar to many of the others you posted and I want to say first that I am grateful for a safe place to share my testimony. I thought of starting my own blog but am not yet ready to have my identity out there. I still have many friends in IHOP and I am hoping and praying they will be freed as I was.
I started as a student at IHOP over a year ago and as others have said, I thought it was incredible at first. Everyone was so kind and seemed to have such a deep and rich love for Jesus. It got me excited to be there and to be around other believers. It ignited my passion for Jesus and I wanted to do nothing but pray and tell people about the power of God. After a while, though, I began to see some things that didn’t set right inside me. You know that feeling you get inside when you’re a little kid about to do something wrong, it was that sort of feeling. I started to get that feeling every time I went into the prayer room to worship and pray. Something was telling me this wasn’t right. I started to berate myself and feel guilty for not having the heart for God that my friends and roommates had because they were all way into it. One day while in the prayer room one of my roommates spoke and shared a prophetic vision she had. A couple days later there were a bunch of people in the prayer room who started convulsing and twitching uncontrollably from a movement of the Holy Spirit. Nothing was happening to me, but my best friend was twitching. The next day I asked her what it was like to feel the Holy Spirit like that and she admitted to me that she was faking it. I was shocked. She admitted that she just wanted to fit in, which was a feeling I understood completely. If you didn’t talk the talk and walk the walk and have prophetic words coming forth and fall over from the power of the Holy Spirit, you just weren’t a part of what was happening and would soon be isolated from everyone else. There is an extremely high level of peer pressure and pressure from the leaders inside.
My roommates had prophetic visions a lot, one so much so that she was called in to meet with Mike Bickle and Lou Engle personally. After that meeting she was never the same. It’s hard to describe but she became a prayer room junkie. It was like she was snorting coke only the coke was the worship in the prayer room. By the time I left IHOP she had dropped below 100 pounds and looked disgusting and despite me and some others begging her to eat, she refused, stating God had told her to fast and pray without ceasing.
There’s something wrong with the worship being done in the prayer room. They aren’t praising God and they aren’t worshipping Jesus either. Some of the lyrics will start that way, but they then become shortened to sometimes even one word that is sang over and over and chanted hundreds of times. The idea is to call forth the Holy Spirit to reveal prophetic revelation, but I know what they are calling forth is not the Holy Spirit. Demons are there, talking to people and entering people and there’s a dark spirit. I know it sounds crazy and that’s why I haven’t started my own blog yet, I’m afraid people will think I’m crazy. But I know what I’ve seen and felt and I know God freed me for a reason.
Mike Bickle says he doesn’t teach the theories of MSOG and Latter Rain but he really does and he knows he does and in front of many of the long term students there are jokes made about not calling it what it really is in the public eye because the “evangelical harlots” will get upset. One of my roommates worked in the office at IHOP and she said that Mike Bickle and Lou Engle meet with several others on a regular basis to call forth the spirits and ask them what to do next. She said it looks and sounds like a séance.
All of this, though, isn’t what drove me from IHOP. It was that verse in the Bible that tells us to test the spirits in I John 4:1. It says we are to test the spirits because many false prophets have gone out into the world. I knew that the Bible told us to beware of false prophets and false teachers, but when I started asking questions to test the spirits I was immediately reprimanded by my leader and warned that if I didn’t stop asking questions I would be removed from the program. Even my friends warned me to be quiet. I met with all of my roommates and told them my doubts and the roommate who had been meeting privately with Mike and Lou became agitated and told me I was on a path of destruction. The next morning I was called into a meeting with three team leaders, one of which was mine, and they told me that testing the spirits didn’t mean questioning the method or the spirit, but what it meant was that “sometimes prophetic words can be inaccurate because of the human spirit that gets in the way.” They said that it was the error from “mixing humanity and divinity.” I knew this wasn’t right. They were twisting the Scripture but I was too afraid to defend the Word in their presence. They warned me not to talk to other students about this and threatened that if I spoke to my parents or family about this I would be kicked out of the program. I was very scared.
When I got back to my apartment, my roommates told me they were moving out until I got my head on straight and they left that night and stayed with other friends. The next day in classes and in the prayer room, no one spoke to me or even acknowledged I was there, not even my best friend. Our seating arrangement had been changed and I was moved away from everyone else. I was also assigned two people to watch over me and make sure I didn’t talk to anyone about my doubts. I was completely isolated simply because I had the nerve to question so I could test the spirits.
I called my mom and she drove several hours to come and get me because I didn’t have a car and I didn’t have any money. I told my parents everything that happened and everything I had seen and heard and they were very upset. My dad placed a call to Mike Bickle but he never returned the call. My mom sent an email to him, but that was never answered either.
I promise you with every part of my being, IHOP is a demonic tool and the leaders know it and they’re training people to channel demons and channel prophetic words (most of which aren’t true and never come true). They twist the Word and use deep meditation to call up spirits. It’s dangerous to the mind and the body and the heart. I can’t prove it to you but this is a bad place and people shouldn’t let their kids attend the camps or the One Thing conference. Please pray for people to be freed from this. There is such an evil spirit there.