Whenever anyone questions the philosophies or teachings of a cult-type organization like IHOP, one very common response is: “Jesus’ message offended people too.”
Members or followers are actually taught this response and it’s merely a sign of the depth of manipulation under which they have fallen. Here’s why:
First, by using the term “offended” they are placing themselves into a victim or martyr position and the person who has questioned their theology is thereby placed into the offensive or attacker position. Please understand, this is a psychological and very purposeful maneuver. Leaders of these organizations teach their followers to expect people to be adverse to their theology, expect people to be offended by how they do things because they know that families will fight for their loved ones. They are taught to play the martyr, indoctrinated with the concept that the world will be against them, thus birthing an Us versus Them mentality. They play the role of martyr and victim very well. Then, when their family member reaches out, out of concern, the leader can say to the follower, “see, I told you they would take offense.” The follower is then drawn deeper into believing the leader must be right about all things since he was right about this.
This is a purposeful psychological tactic of manipulation used to cause division among families, friends and within the body of Christ itself. Mike Bickle is especially good at causing this division, of creating an elite upper echelon of Christians and dividing the church under the guise of forming a new, end-time church. He’s amassing his army, not God’s army. Open your eyes.
Second, it is true that some people were offended by Jesus’ message; however, those people were not those that believed in Him. The followers of Jesus were not offended by his words. What is horrifying about this excuse is that the follower of IHOP is drawing a connection to say that they, themselves or their leaders are Jesus in this scenario. To make such a comparison between the words of Jesus and the words of someone like Mike Bickle is utterly repulsive. Jesus spoke only truth and all truth and He came for the purpose of fulfilling God’s plan. Mike Bickle speaks only lies and twisted versions of truth, wrangled to fit his own agenda, not God’s agenda. There is not one person in the IHOP movement that can be compared to Jesus. Shame on you for making such a comparison.
Open your eyes and stop playing the victim.
I am a believer in Christ. I love God with all my heart. I am not, nor have I ever been offended by the Word of the Lord or by the message Jesus taught and continues to teach through God’s Word.
I am, however, very much offended by the false teachings of Mike Bickle, Lou Engle and the IHOP ministry. I am angry with a righteous anger and am standing against this movement with the power and strength of the Almighty God and Lord Jesus Christ whom I serve.
Every excuse that is used to justify something that is so clearly NOT of God will fall flimsy to the ground just like the excuse above. Stop playing the victim.
You have a choice. You can choose to open your eyes to the truth and let God restore your life and your family and stop playing the victim. You don’t have to be Mike Bickle’s martyr any longer. Stop playing the victim.