Steve Strang Responds to Mike Bickle’s Personal Statement Amid Investigation

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Abby Trivett

On Dec. 12, Mike Bickle released his personal statement about the allegations that were brought against him back in October. On his most recent Strang Report, Stephen Strang discussed how Christians can prayerfully and wisely discern what is happening in the midst of this case.

Speaking through Larry Tomczak’s recent article “5 Ways We Should Respond to Mike Bickle’s Statement,” and the statement posted by Bickle, Strang brought clarity to the situation.

“These things are very complicated. I believe that this kind of thing is also a spiritual attack,” Strang says, as he encouraged audiences to look at the circumstance from all possible angles, including that the enemy may have plans to bring down the International House of Prayer Kansas City. “It’s something that the enemy would want to squash. To me, what’s happening is almost like a really, really nasty church split. And there are churches where people have gotten offended, tried to oust the pastor, brought charges either true or false, or in some cases, exaggerated, and tried to bring down a ministry. And I’m very, very concerned about that.”

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Strang read through Bickle’s public statement which says:

To my Family and Friends,

With a very heavy heart I want to express how deeply grieved I am that my past sins have led to so much pain, confusion, and division in the body of Christ in this hour. I sadly0 admit that 20+ years ago, I sinned by engaging in inappropriate behavior—my moral failures were real. (I am not admitting to the more intense sexual activities that some are suggesting). I hate my sin and I see it as serious and grievous before a holy God. I take all sin seriously, so on those occasions I quickly and sincerely repented in a way that resulted in receiving assurance from God followed by a daily resolve to live holy in all of my ways. God graciously helped me to respond in those times with a broken and contrite heart that was filled with godly sorrow. To this day, I remain sorrowful about those past failures.

I am anguished that my past sins have caused great pain for my wife and family along with the IHOPKC family, and others. I am deeply sorry that my sin put the IHOPKC leadership and community in a very painful and difficult position. I asked my family for forgiveness. I now ask for forgiveness from the IHOPKC family and many in the body of Christ.

Some may wonder why I am just now making a public statement 20+ years later? It is because I was recently confronted about things that I said or did 20+ years ago—things I believed were dealt with and under the blood of Jesus. Since this has now become public, I want to repent publicly. On October 28, 2023, I wrote the first draft of this statement but at that very same time, false allegations of sexual abuse were being circulated against me. I was given legal advice to wait to make my statement public for several important reasons—including creating the misunderstanding that I was confessing to the false allegations that were circulating. I am very sorry that it took so long for this personal statement to come out. This delay created additional pain, anguish, division, and more for so many people that I love. I am deeply sorry for this.

Since late October terrible things have been written against me in various communications (blogs, articles, posts, etc.) that describe me and various sinful things that I allegedly did. There are many misrepresentations of my words and actions in these communications including statements that are out of context, greatly exaggerated, or blatantly false.

I ask that my family and friends do not defend me. I have confidence that the Lord will speak concerning what He sees and says about me in His timing. Please do not engage in debates on social media to defend me and please do not criticize those who are voicing their disdain for me. Please only speak blessing to them and about them (Matt. 5:44). In this way, we can minimize some of the divisiveness that the enemy has planned—and we can continue to stay focused on loving Jesus and one another. I am deeply committed to respond to those with complaints against me in the spirit of Psalm 18:35—both now and in the years to come. Some who are have spoken against me are friends (I will continue to view them as friends).

For an extended season, I will not engage in my public preaching ministry (conferences, social media, zooms, etc.)—I see this as God’s “delayed” loving discipline on my life (Heb. 12:6, 11). I will look to other leaders to determine how long this season will last—it may be long and it may even be permanent. I will only reengage in my public preaching ministry, if God confirms it through others. I am at peace with whatever He wants (2 Sam. 15:25-26). Jesus, I love and trust You!

I honor and love the IHOPKC community and will forever be grateful for them. They are a most remarkable people—they are truly marvelous comrades. I know the Lord is with them and that His favor and grace will continue to rest on them.

Pray for me, Diane, and my beloved family. They have expressed their love and support for me in extravagant ways. With much sorrow yet with prayerful confidence in God’s perfect leadership,

Mike Bickle

“I could tell that it was carefully crafted. And he is specifically saying that he was not guilty of a lot of the things he was accused of,” Strang says. “There are several things going on. We almost every day hear something a little different but apparently it will be investigated, it needs to…And where there is sin, there needs to be repentance. And sometimes there needs to be discipline, particularly of Christian leaders, who the Bible very, very clearly says must live by a higher standard. But there have been attacks in our culture against people just to try to destroy them.”

For everyone involved in the situation and for those of us learning about what is going on, Strang points out a fundamental tenet of the Christian faith: “The whole essence of Christianity is forgiveness,” Strang says. “Everyone who’s been forgiven by Christ has done something they would not want on the front page of the newspaper…and Mike very clearly said that people shouldn’t defend him. Some people will see that I’m defending him. I’m not, I’m trying to bring clarity.”

Strang encourages viewers to think and pray for all of the people involved and to think critically about all of the questions that must be asked in these allegations. Above all, he asks that we remember that there is a real spiritual attack that is not of flesh and blood happening in the background that wants nothing more than to divide IHOPKC and the body of Christ.

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Abby Trivett is a marketing copywriter and coordinator for Charisma Media.

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