Texas Gov. Rick Perry Partnering with New Apostolic Groups for Houston "Call to Prayer"
The event in Houston on August 6 is advertised as The Response: A Call to Prayer for a Nation in Crisis and the organizers include: Luis and Jill Cataldo, on the staff of IHOP in Kansas City; Randy and Kelsey Bohlender with IHOP and The Call; Apostle Doug Stringer; Dave Silker of IHOP; leaders of the American Family Association; Jim Garlow, who headed the campaign for Proposition Eight and heads Newt Ginrich's Renewing American Leadership; and several other Religious Right activists.
Rick Perry's partnership with the apostles and prophets just prior to his possible announcement of a run for president, would appear to give credence to the warnings of several contributors to Talk2action about the growing political power of the New Apostolic "prayer warrior" networks. The New Apostolic Reformation is where the anti-gay, anti-abortion, and Christian Zionist networks converge with an aggressive form of Christian "dominionism," or the belief that Christians must take control over society and government.
This network began as part of the campaign in the 1980s and 1990s to evangelize the world prior to the year 2000. One of the major leaders of this mission effort was C. Peter Wagner, [Video] a thirty-year professor of church growth at Fuller Theological Seminary. He left that position to continue these efforts under the banner of the New Apostolic Reformation, moving to Colorado Springs to work with Ted Haggard to develop the World Prayer Center. Haggard wrote that that in 1999 their outreach included 40,000,000 participants worldwide.
Since that time, leading Apostles Dutch Sheets, Chuck Pierce, Cindy Jacobs, and others, have developed a fifty-state communications and mobilization network of "prayer warriors." Under the leadership of Apostle Ed Silvoso, head of the International Transformation Network, the prayer warrior networks in some American cities are now divided into precincts, with one person assigned specifically to each street - a political organizers dream.
Politicians competing for the support of this prayer warrior network prior to the presidential primaries include Sarah Palin, who has an over twenty-year relationship with Alaskan Apostle Mary Glazier; Newt Gingrich, who was anointed by Lou Engle on an internationally televised broadcast in 2009; Michelle Bachman, Rick Santorum, and now, apparently, Rick Perry.
The Response is described on the website as "an apolitical prayer meeting" which has adopted the American Family Association's statement of faith. The AFA is now described as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. AFA leadership has been partnering for several years with leadership of the apostolic and prophetic movement, sharing their aggressive stance against gay rights and abortion and reproductive rights.
Lou Engle is one of the inner circle of the New Apostolic Reformation. He is well known for his initiation of anti-abortion events in which participants put red tape over the mouths with the word "Life" written across the tape in black letters. Just prior to the 2008 election, Engle held The Call in a San Diego's Qualcomm Stadium in support of Proposition Eight. By the end of the event he was screaming for martyrs for the cause. (Article with video.)
Engle is one of the co-founders with Che Ahn of Harvest Rock Church in Pasadena, but Engle is now based in Kansas City, with Mike Bickle's IHOP. Ahn now heads the Wagner Leadership Institute, which provides New Apostolic training in prophecy, Strategic Level Spiritual Warfare, and demon deliverance, in training centers across the world. (See video of Che Ahn introducing prophecy by Apostle Stacey Campbell at the anointing ceremony of faith-healer Todd Bentley.)
The Kansas City IHOP is the model for "Harp and Bowl" or 24/7 prayer groups that are now found across the country. The movement, founded by Mike Bickle, is directed toward youth. Bickle is the former leader of the Kansas City Metro Christian Fellowship, a group of charismatic apostles and prophets which was often referred to as the Kansas City Prophets. In the 1980s and 1990s, this group was controversial, even among other independent charismatic groups, but today their unique brand of theology is appealing to millions.
The IHOP prayer centers are modeled after Count Ludwig von Zinzendorf's community in Herrnhut, Germany in the 18th century. Today's prayer warriors in the apostolic and prophetic movement view Zinzendorf as the father of modern missions.
The Apostles' Obsession with Jews and Israel
The "Israel Mandate" is an effort coordinated by Mike Bickle and other apostolic and prophetic leaders, including Messianics Dan Juster and Asher Intrater, and Robert Stearns, one of the directors of John Hagee's Christians United for Israel. They teach an elaborate narrative of the end times in which believers are not snatched from the earth before the final battles of the "Tribulation" period, but fight in these battles themselves. One prerequisite for what they believe to be the imminent end times, is the conversion of Jews to charismatic evangelicalism. As stated on IHOP in study notes on the end times,
"Jesus' return is contingent on Jewish people turning to him."
The Israel Mandate, like several other related groups including Toward Jerusalem Council II, the Road to Jerusalem, and the Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem, are all working frantically to make sure that enough Jews are converted to bring about the anticipated end times events as soon as possible. Access to Jewish communities has been greatly aided by Christian Zionism and the partnership of Jewish leaders with these end times prophets in "pro-Israel" activism.
Messianic Rabbi Dan Juster has a network of congregations in the U.S. and worldwide and works closely with Bickle and Stearns pursuing the Israel Mandate. Juster describes it as follows.
Mike Bickle gave an urgent call to the western Gentile church to understand the end-time significance of Israel and the importance of prayer, fasting and commitment to stand with God's purposes for Israel. Based on Romans 11:20-33, he shared revelation about the coming apostasy (falling away) of the church due to ignorance of the mystery of Israel, under the pressure and persecution that is coming. There was a strong warning against deception and distractions that are preventing Christians from praying God's will and being prepared for end-times trouble.
After the recent controversy surrounding President Barack Obama's statements about Israel and the West Bank, a group of Religious Right and Christian Zionist leader ran full page ads in newspapers as an open letter in support of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. This group, which calls its campaign "Israel: You Are Not Alone," included New Apostolic leaders Rick Joyner, Chuck Pierce, Don Finto, Robert Stearns, Che Ahn, and Mike Bickle. The list signing the proclamation included the Messianic Jewish Alliance and Toward Jerusalem Council II. These aggressive campaigns to proselytize Jews work closely with directors from John Hagee's Christians United for Israel, which claims not to proselytize.
This end times narrative promoted by the apostles is summed up in a theology described as "One New Man" in which Jewish and Gentile believers come together in preparation for the end times. This theology is described in detail in Apostle Don Finto's book which has been distributed to churches worldwide that participate in the international Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem, led by Robert Stearns and Jack Hayford. The book is titled Your People Shall Be My People: How Israel, the Jews and the Christian Church Will Come Together in the Last Days.
To see a brief overview of this particular end times narrative, see a two minute video of The Call Jerusalem in 2008. This event was held simultaneous with the "Global Day of Prayer," another apostolic and prophetic event initiated by South African businessman Graham Power, a director of Apostle Ed Silvoso's International Transformation Network.
The video clip of The Call Jerusalem begins with Mike Bickle and then continues with Lou Engle and Messianic Asher Intrater, all leaders of The Call and IHOP.
The Apostles in Jacksonville, Florida
This year's Global Day of Prayer will take place this coming Sunday, June 12, and is headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida. Some of the events will be held at "The Potter's House" mega-church, which coincidentally, was the site of a rally in support of school choice in 2005, led by former Governor Jeb Bush. (The Potter's House Christian Academy was one of the schools referenced in my recent article "Vouchers/Tax Credits Funding Creationism, Revisionist History, and Hostility Toward Other Religions.
Apostle Kimberly Daniels has recently been elected to the city council in Jacksonville - as a Democrat - following the endorsement of rapper MC Hammer and John Hagee. Daniels is a leading apostle who specializes in expelling demons and has written a number of books on the topic, including one with a foreword by Diana Hagee.
Guarding the Portals and Gates From Demons
Apostle Doug Stringer is also one of the organizers for the Aug 6 event in Houston. Stringer is a former aerobics instructor who has built an extensive faith-based charitable and emergency response organization in Texas called Somebody Cares. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Stringer announced that his organization distributed over 30 millions dollars worth of aid.
The 24/7 prayer vigils by the apostles and prophets include an effort to guard the portals and gates through which they believe that demonic forces gain control over America. They claim that one of these demonic forces is homosexuality. Events such as hurricanes are claimed to be linked to this demon. For instance, Texas prayer network coordinator Tom Schleuter reported in 2008 about the linkage of Hurricane Rita and the fight against homosexuality.
Two weeks before Hurricane Rita hit Texas, the USSPN began a God-ordained national effort to bring the governmental rule of the King of Glory to our nation along the I-35 corridor. This effort began in the largest inland port in our nation, Laredo, Texas. Through Apostles Jay Swallow and Doug Stringer and Prophet Chuck Pierce, God positioned the Church of the region (Laredo, Texas, and Nuevo Laredo, Mexico) in unity and governmentally set the Church in order, commissioning the Church to develop and move with Kingdom authority. The United States of America will either be held together or divided by what occurs during the next three years along the I-35 corridor. What began with the Church of Laredo-Nuevo Laredo must continue all the way to the Canadian border. The Lord Jesus Christ wants the Church along the I-35 corridor to move in obedience to Him with unity, order, and authority.
Note that Apostle Jay Swallow in the above quote has worked closely with former U.S. Senator and current Governor Sam Brownback on "Reconciliation" events with Native Americans. For the apostles, these events are an effort to remove the demons they claim prevent Native Americans from being evangelized. These efforts, including a resolution by the U.S. Senate and Congress apologizing to Native Americans for their treatment, are viewed by the apostles as part of their battle against abortion.
The way in which the apology to Native Americans is linked to ending abortion goes beyond the scope of this article. See this Talk2action article and the video on the Heartland Apostolic Network website for further information. The HAPN video is about 11 minutes long and should be watched to the end to understand the connection of abortion with the "reconciliation" with Native Americans. The video features Apostles Jay Swallow, Nigel Bigpond, and Lou Engle. Also see the related documents for Divorcing Baal ceremonies, which have been duplicated by the apostles in states across the nation.
Taking the Apostles Seriously
If readers are tempted to laugh or snicker at groups forming 24/7 prayer vigils to protect the interstates of America or hold ceremonies divorcing Baal, please think again. The apostles and prophets have become a major force in American politics and both Republican and Democratic political candidates are rushing to curry their favor. They will undoubtedly play a role in the selection of the Republican candidate for president.
Despite the clearly demonstrated influence of the apostles and prophets of the New Apostolic Reformation in today's Religious Right leadership and in political organizing, most mainstream press has failed to cover this movement. One can expect that the press will probably also overlook the significance of Governor Rick Perry's new partnership with the apostles.
Postscript from the Author:
I initially failed to notice the participation in the August 6 event of Alice Patterson, head of Justice at the Gate in San Antonio, and have added the following. In the 2008 report “Spiritual Mapping and Spiritual Warfare - Muthee and the Transformation Franchise,” Part Three, there is a section on the anointing of Tom Schleuter as the head of the state prayer network in the Texas Capitol building. Alice Patterson took part, as reported by Bob Long, the Apostolic leader of Rally Call Ministries.
"Alice Patterson, (Director of Justice at the Gate) led us in decreeing order, humility and fear of God over the state... She also led us in breaking the curse off black and Hispanic legislators.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry Partnering with New Apostolic Groups for Houston "Call to Prayer" | 29 comments (29 topical, 0 hidden)
Texas Gov. Rick Perry Partnering with New Apostolic Groups for Houston "Call to Prayer" | 29 comments (29 topical, 0 hidden)