Mike Bickle of IHOPKC, heresy, and the Catholic View of Salvation

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6)

On December 28, 2018, the International House of Prayer Onething conference begins, and once again, with Mike Bickle’s invitation and blessing, Catholics will be spiritual participants.

Can two walk together, except they be agreed? (Amos 3:3)

Mike Bickle is a heretic. So is Lou Engle, as noted hereAnd so is anyone else who wants to bring the Catholic Church into the Body of Christ, as if it were just another Christian denomination. The Catholic Church does not teach that only those who accept Christ as Savior are going to enter heaven.

“And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)

Please listen carefully to the heresy coming from Catholic Bishop Robert Barron as he explains Catholic teaching to Ben Shapiro. It is a short but painful four minutes and twelve seconds. You will hear that even an atheist of “good will” can be saved.

Perhaps IHOPKC founder Mike Bickle’s decades of contemplative practices have left him wide open to deception and confusion. Whatever the reason, may God protect all the young people he is misleading at IHOPKC, and at the Onething conference.

Related: The Send’s Lou Engle blesses those helping the “Evangelical and Catholic worlds become one”

 

The Send’s Lou Engle blesses those helping the “Evangelical and Catholic worlds become one”

For some time now Catholic evangelists Keith and Iwona Major have worked with The Send founder Lou Engle and IHOPKC’s Mike Bickle to unify Catholics and Protestants.

Lou Engle states, “Keith and Iwona Major are a bridge to helping the Evangelical and Catholic worlds become one. I bless this couple for all they are doing.” [1] (emphasis added)

This is reason enough to avoid The Send conference (February 2019), and any other spiritual endeavor cobbled together by Engle. Many of those scheduled to speak or perform at The Send also seem oblivious to the difference between Catholic and Christian theology.

For the third time Catholics will participate in in the International House of Prayer’s Onething conference, scheduled Dec. 28-31, 2018. [2]

In 2015, speaking with Keith Major, leader of that year’s Onething Catholic Ecumenical Track, IHOPKC founder Mike Bickle stated:

Well we have so much to learn from all over the Body of Christ–Catholics, charismatics, non-charismatics, denominations, anyone who loves Jesus. That’s why we’re hosting an ecumenical track, or actually you’re the one leading it, and  I so appreciate you doing that, because if you love Jesus and the Word of God, man, we’re going on the same direction before the Lord, and we love that. Thank you. (see video)

But Catholics and Protestants are not going in the “same direction before the Lord.” According to the Vatican document Lumen Gentium, a Muslim who is true to his Islamic faith will be saved! A Catholic friend of mine tried to explain that this teaching is, well, nuanced. But it is not. It is right there in black and white.

According to Lumen Gentium:

But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator. In the first place amongst these there are the Muslims, who, professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful God, who on the last day will judge mankind. [2]

Roman Catholicism promotes a “gospel” of inclusivism.

The Bible states:

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6)

Roman Catholic Bishop Robert Barron recently assured conservative talk host Ben Shapiro, a practicing Orthodox Jew, that those “outside the explicit Christian faith can be saved…” Lumen Gentium strikes again. (read article) 

What is going to happen as prominent leaders like Lou Engle, Todd White, Mike Bickle and others continue to press for this Catholic/Protestant spiritual syncretism? How many of their young followers are going to be swept up in heresy?

In addition to Lumen Gentium, there will also be exposure to Catholic practices and beliefs–purgatory, praying to Mary and the saints,  the Eucharist, Mary as sinless virgin, and so much more. King Solomon, blessed with wisdom, nevertheless began to worship false gods after being exposed to his pagan wives’ unholy beliefs. (1 Kings 11:1-11) The Word of God warns against Catholic/Protestant spiritual “unity,” because there is no such thing.

While there are Catholics who are saved, it is despite Catholic teaching, not because of it. Discussion of the Catholic faith is always difficult. Feelings get hurt, or people get angry, and it is all too easy to be timid when dealing with this, as Catholics are our friends, neighbors, co-workers, family members. The most loving thing we can do is speak the Truth.  (see video)

The immediate problem is not the Catholics; it is false teachers like Lou Engle and Mike Bickle who continue to push for this false unity.

Despite the clear warning in the Word of God (2 Cor 6:14-17), it is likely many in the visible church will begin to accept and incorporate these unbiblical teachings. Remember, many in the church already accept certain new age beliefs, so this is not much of stretch.

Beware The Send, and beware IHOPKC. Pray for the believers who are being deceived by these leaders. A false religion is rising, and the foundation has been set.

Source Notes:

1. Endorsements   https://stonetoflesh.org/endorsements/

2. https://stonetoflesh.org/calendar?view=calendar&month=December-2018

3. http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_const_19641121_lumen-gentium_en.html

A.A.’s Broad Highway invitation contradicts Christ’s warning in Matthew 7:13

There are three A.A. Big Book references to a broad spirituality.

1) “We feel we are on the Broad Highway, walking hand in hand with the Spirit of the Universe.”– AA Big Book, pg.75 (bold mine)

2) “We found that God does not make too hard terms with those who seek Him. To us, the Realm of the Spirit is broad, roomy, all inclusive; never exclusive or forbidding to those who earnestly seek. It is open, we believe, to all men. When, therefore, we speak to you of God, we mean your own conception of God.”– AA  Big Book, pg.46-47 (bold mine)

3) “If our testimony helps sweep away prejudice, enables you to think honestly, encourages you to search diligently within yourself, then, if you wish, you can join us on the Broad Highway. With this attitude you cannot fail. The consciousness of your belief is sure to come to you.”–AA Big Book, pg. 55 (bold mine)

Yet, this is just what Christ warns us about:

“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is BROAD that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.” (Matthew 7:13)

The AA Big Book is basically the AA “bible,” and millions of people have gone down the broad way of destruction because of such teaching.

I’m Catholic. Why should I consider becoming a Christian?

The following is from gotquestions.org:

Question: “I am a Catholic. Why should I consider becoming a Christian?”

Answer: First, please understand that we intend no offense in the wording of this question. We genuinely receive questions, from Catholics, along the lines of “What is the difference between Catholics and Christians?” In face-to-face conversations with Catholics, we have literally heard, “I am not a Christian, I am Catholic.” To many Catholics, the terms “Christian” and “Protestant” are synonymous. With all that said, the intent of this article is that Catholics would study what the Bible says about being a Christian and would perhaps consider that the Catholic faith is not the best representation of what the Bible describes. As a background, please read our article on “What is a Christian?

A key distinction between Catholics and Christians is the view of the Bible. Catholics view the Bible as having equal authority with the Church and tradition. Christians view the Bible as the supreme authority for faith and practice. The question is, how does the Bible present itself? Second Timothy 3:16-17 tells us, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” This text tells us that Scripture is not “just the beginning,” or “just the basics,” or the “foundation for a more complete church tradition.” On the contrary, Scripture is perfectly and fully sufficient for everything in the Christian life. Scripture can teach us, rebuke us, correct us, train us, and equip us. “Bible Christians” do not deny the value of church tradition. Rather, Christians uphold that for a church tradition to be valid, it must be based on the clear teaching of Scripture and must be in full agreement with Scripture. Catholic friend, study the Word of God for yourself. In God’s Word you will find God’s description of, and intention for, His Church. Second Timothy 2:15 declares, “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.”

A second key difference between Catholics and Bible Christians is the understanding of how we can approach God. Catholics tend to approach God through intermediaries, such as Mary or the saints. Christians approach God directly, offering prayers to no one other than God Himself. The Bible proclaims that we ourselves can approach God’s throne of grace with boldness (Hebrews 4:16). The Bible is perfectly clear that God desires us to pray to Him, to have communication with Him, to ask Him for the things we need (Philippians 4:6Matthew 7:7-81 John 5:14-15). There is no need for mediators or intermediaries, as Christ is our one and only mediator (1 Timothy 2:5), and both Christ and the Holy Spirit are already interceding on our behalf (Romans 8:26-27Hebrews 7:25). Catholic friend, God loves you intimately and has provided an open door to direct communication through Jesus.

The most crucial difference between Catholics and Bible Christians is on the issue of salvation. Catholics view salvation almost entirely as a process, while Christians view salvation as both a completed status and a process. Catholics see themselves as “being saved,” while Christians view themselves as “having been saved.” First Corinthians 1:2 says, “To those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be holy.” The words “sanctified” and “holy” come from the same Greek root. This verse is declaring that Christians are both sanctified and called to be sanctified. The Bible presents salvation as a gift that is received the moment a person places faith in Jesus Christ as Savior (John 3:16). When a person receives Christ as Savior, he/she is justified (declared righteous – Romans 5:9), redeemed (rescued from slavery to sin – 1 Peter 1:18), reconciled (achieving peace with God – Romans 5:1), sanctified (set apart for God’s purposes – 1 Corinthians 6:11), and born again as a new creation (1 Peter 1:232 Corinthians 5:17). Each of these is fully accomplished at the moment of salvation. Christians are then called to live out practically (called to be holy) what is already true positionally (sanctified).

The Catholic viewpoint is that salvation is received by faith, but then must be “maintained” by good works and participation in the Sacraments. Bible Christians do not deny the importance of good works or that Christ calls us to observe the ordinances in remembrance of Him and in obedience to Him. The difference is that Christians view these things as the result of salvation, not a requirement for salvation or a means of maintaining salvation. Salvation is an accomplished work, purchased by the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ (1 John 2:2). God offers us salvation and assurance of salvation because Jesus’ sacrifice was fully, completely, and perfectly sufficient. If we receive God’s precious gift of salvation, we can know that we are saved. First John 5:13 declares, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”

We can know that we have eternal life, and we can have assurance of our salvation because of the greatness of Christ’s sacrifice. Christ’s sacrifice does not need to be re-offered or re-presented. Hebrews 7:27 says, “He sacrificed for their sins once for all when He offered Himself.” Hebrews 10:10 declares, “We have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” First Peter 3:18 exclaims, “For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God.” Christ’s once-for-all sacrifice was absolutely and perfectly sufficient. Jesus declared on the cross, “It is finished” (John 19:30). Jesus’ atoning sacrifice was the full payment for all of our sins (1 John 2:2). As a result, all of our sins are forgiven, and we are promised eternal life in heaven the moment we receive the gift God offers us – salvation through Jesus Christ (John 3:16).

Catholic friend, do you desire this “so great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3)? If so, all you must do is receive it (John 1:12) through faith (Romans 5:1). God loves us and offers us salvation as a gift (John 3:16). If we receive His grace, by faith, we have salvation as our eternal possession (Ephesians 2:8-9). Once saved, nothing can separate us from His love (Romans 8:38-39). Nothing can remove us from His hand (John 10:28-29). If you desire this salvation, if you desire to have all your sins forgiven, if you desire to have assurance of salvation, if you desire direct access to the God who loves you – receive it, and it is yours. This is the salvation that Jesus died to provide and that God offers as a gift.

If you have received Jesus Christ as Savior, by faith, because of what you have read here today, please let us know by clicking on the “I have accepted Christ today” button below. Welcome to the family of God! Welcome, Catholic friend, to the Christian life!

If you have any questions, please use the question form on our Bible Questions Answered page.Recommended Resource: Roman Catholics and Evangelicals: Agreements and Differences by Norm Geisler

The Send conference features Bethel Redding speaker known for “grave soaking”

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; (2 Tim 4:3)

Sixty thousand people are expected at The Send stadium event, scheduled for February 23, 2019. According to the organization’s website, it is “A NEW ERA.” We may indeed be entering a new era, but not necessarily one of increased evangelism or missions, which is the purported goal of The Send.

Something is very different in the visible church these days. According to a recent PEW survey, many Christians now accept concepts associated with the new age, such as “belief in reincarnation, astrology, psychics and the presence of spiritual energy in physical objects like mountains or trees.”[1]

One of the speakers scheduled for The Send is Ben Fitzgerald, now a Bethel Redding pastor.  Bethel Redding leader Bill Johnson will be speaking as well. Readers may recall that Fitzgerald was one of the Bethel Redding people who tried to absorb or soak up the “anointing” from the bones of  the controversial evangelist, Smith Wigglesworth.

Most grave soakings involve touching or lying on the grave of a deceased saint. Whether Fitzgerald and his group did this is unclear.  The video shows Fitzgerald and others at Smith Wiggleworth’s grave where Fitzgerald, in the role of spiritual middleman, tries to transfer the “impartation” into those viewing the video. He states:

And God can release this same impartation to you. (1:23 in video)

We release the anointing of God that’s in this place … we release right now the anointing. (2:15)

Thank you Father that what was on Smith Wigglesworth’s life, let it come on us. (2:52)

Later in the video, there is a similar effort at Moriah Chapel in Wales, where evangelist Evan Roberts is buried. (3:08)

Fitzgerald has recently “responded to commentary about ‘grave sucking’, suggesting that he had acted unwisely but that he was not attempting to draw out the spiritual powers of dead saints. Instead, he visited the tombs for inspiration and prayer (to God, not to these dead saints).” [2]

That is not entirely accurate. The video makes it clear he was attempting to summon and transfer the “spiritual powers of dead saints,” as writer Murray Campbell puts it. [3] Why? Why would Fitzgerald believe he could do this?

Bethel Redding’s Bill Johnson has belatedly stated his church does not teach or accept grave soaking. Here, however, is Johnson’s statement about anointing and mantles in the book, The Physics of Heaven:

There are anointings, mantles, revelations and mysteries that have lain unclaimed, literally where they were left, because the generation that walked in them never passed them on. I believe it’s possible for us to recover realms of anointing, realms of insight, realms of God that have been untended for decades simply by choosing to reclaim them and perpetuate them for future generations. [4] (emphasis added)

And here is a screenshot of Beni Johnson, Bill Johnson’s wife, lying on the grave of C.S. Lewis. Note that one comment states, “Grab some for me.” This would seem to indicate that grave soaking is familiar to Bethel Redding people.

Image result for picture of beni johnson on c.s. lewis grave

In an interview with Michael Brown, Bill Johnson rejected the idea of seeking impartation of anointing from the dead. Then, a little later, he said this:

We’re actually building a library museum with various artifacts from past revivals. Not to go backwards but to just try to give honor. I really felt that the Lord put it on my heart several years ago that if we honor the moves of God in the past, he would release those same anointings again. [5 ]

What is this supposed to mean? When the museum library is built, are we going to  hear about people who pray over artifacts for impartation of a dead saint’s alleged anointing?

According to Bill Johnson’s own website:

The Lord has made it very clear to us that a practical way we can do this is through what we have called The House of Generals. It is both a library and museum containing a collection of historical literature and artifacts from past revivals and revivalists. I have no desire to move backwards. But God has let us know that if we will honor those who walked faithfully before us then He will give us access to their anointings. [6] (emphasis added)

This is not the first time Bethel Redding people have misinterpreted the Word of God  to justify an unbiblical practice. (2 Kings 13:21, 2 Kings 2:14) There is much more to this grave soaking saga, so for those interested there are links to well researched articles at the end of this post.

As the PEW survey showed, New Age concepts are already in the church. The Send, where Bill Johnson and Ben Fitzgerald are slated to speak, represents a false spiritual movement, one that is rapidly coalescing.

With Bethel Redding leading the way, biblical terms such as “anointing” and “mantle” have been hijacked, and seem to have taken on a meaning that is more akin to the spiritual energy of the New Age. Bethel Redding undeniably has a real propensity for aspects of the New Age. (Read)

In Dreaming with God, Bill Johnson writes:

Many prominent pastors and conference speakers add fuel to the fire of fear by assuming that because the New Age promotes it, its origins must be from the devil. I find that form of reasoning weak at best. If we follow that line of thought we will continue to give the devil the tools that God has given us for success in life and ministry. [7](emphasis added)

So…there are New Age tools given to us by God? That can only be called delusional.

As previously noted in Part 1 of this series, The Send speaker/artist list is dominated by: New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) advocates; contemplative prayer practitioners; and those who push for Protestant/Catholic spiritual unity.

In Part 3 we will examine Mike Bickle and the Catholic contemplative conundrum.

Related: The Send’s Lou Engle blesses those helping the “Evangelical and Catholic worlds become one”

End Part 2

Read Part 1

Source Notes:

  1. Pew Research Center Survey      
  2. Update on questions relating to Bethel and Bill Johnson       
  3. Ibid.
  4. The Physics of Heaven by Ellyn Davis and Judy Franklin, Bill Johnson’s Chapter: Recovering Our Spiritual Inheritance   
  5. Interview with Bill Johnson (18:01)
  6. bjm.org/house-of-generals
  7. Bill Johnson, Dreaming With God: Secrets to Redesigning Your World Through God’s Creative Flow (Shippensburg, PA: Destiny Image, 2006), p. 86.

More on grave soaking:

Charisma Magazine reports on why Bill Johnson didn’t immediately shut down ‘grave sucking’ –churchwatchcentral.com

 “What is grave sucking / grave soaking / mantle grabbing?” –Gotquestions.org

Update on questions relating to Bethel and Bill Johnson–murraycampbell.net

 

Warning about “The Send” stadium gathering

“In 2011 a major revelatory shift took place.” –Lou Engle, founder of The Send

Thy prophets have seen vain and foolish things for thee: and they have not discovered thine iniquity, to turn away thy captivity; but have seen for thee false burdens and causes of banishment.  (Lam 2:14)

Francis Chan is passionately promoting a stadium event called The Send, scheduled to take place in Orlando, Florida on February 23, 2019.[1] At face value, the purpose of the gathering is to spread the gospel message. But something else may be happening here.

The Send website [2] listing the speakers and artists proclaims:

Look who is uniting for The Send. We aren’t coming together for an event we are gathering for a tipping point. Become a part of the story.

Okay, so what kind of tipping point? Become a part of what kind of story? Unfortunately, The Send speaker/artist list is dominated by: New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) advocates; contemplative prayer practitioners; and those who foment the heresy of Protestant/Catholic spiritual unity.

One goal of this ongoing series is an examination of the theology and practices of Todd White, Lou Engle, Bill Johnson, Heidi Baker, Francis Chan, Mike Bickle, and other scheduled speakers and artists.

The Bible warns, And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. (Matthew 24:11)

How did the concept of The Send originate? According to Lou Engle:

In 2011 a major revelatory shift took place. Into my living room walked these YWAM wild men, and they began to prophesy, there’s a coming shift to The Call. And it will not just be fasting and praying, but the proclamation of the gospel, signs and wonders and stadiums will be filled. And Billy Graham’s mantle is coming on the nation. And then they said, The Call is gonna lead to The Send. And it struck me–maybe The Call is a forerunner for a new Jesus Movement coming. [3]

Or, maybe it is the forerunner to something…else. The question must be asked–at what point in history does the false church begin to coalesce? (Revelation 17:1-6) As noted by Ray Yungen, Warren B. Smith [4] and others, contemplative prayer serves as a key linchpin for the rising false church.

“In the spiritual climate of today,” writes Yungen, “a unifying mystical prayer practice fits the paradigm necessary to unite the various world religions–the contemplative prayer movement is such a practice! I believe this movement is taking many on a downward spiral that could lead to the great apostasy. For this to happen, as the Bible says, there will be ‘seducing spirits’ who design a spirituality nearly indistinguishable from the truth.'” [5]

Thus it will be important to write about Mike Bickle, founder of International House of Prayer. While Bickle can be rightfully called the King of contemplative prayer, by no means is he the only scheduled speaker to embrace this deceptive practice.

According to Bickle, “Everyone in the Body of Christ is called to live lives of contemplative prayer…” [6]

As this series continues, we’ll see the results of immersion in contemplative prayer, the power of this deceptive practice, and its influence in the push for Catholic/Protestant unity.

End Part 1

Part 2: The Send conference features Bethel Redding speaker known for “grave soaking”

Source Notes and Links:

1. Francis Chan and The Send

2. The Send speakers and artists

3. Lou Engle and origin of The Send

4. Meditation and Contemplative Prayer by Warren Smith

5. Ray Yungen, A Time of Departing, pg. 184

6.   Mike Bickle and contemplative prayer