There is never a lack of heresies. The Circle Maker is one of the latest. Here is how one promotional explains it:
· This dynamic four-session video-based curriculum uses the story of Honi the circle maker, who prayer-walked his way around a devastating drought in first-century BC Israel until the rains came, to help you and your entire church begin to identify the dreams and future miracles to draw circles around to find your answers from God. God is still looking for circle makers whose bold prayers defy human convention and invoke divine intervention. Mark Batterson not only teaches about big dreams and bold prayers, he lives it.
What is the attraction? Why the popularity of drawing circles? In their promotional, christianbook.com explains:
· In Matthew 21, Jesus tells us, "If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." However, most of the time we pray, we only ask for the small things. We're afraid to ask for what we really want, or to be passionate in our petitions. Do you ever sense that there's far more to prayer, and to God's vision for your life, than what you're experiencing? What impossibly big dream is God calling you to draw a prayer circle around? In The Circle Maker, Mark Batterson introduces you to the possibility of a deeper, more passionate, persistent, and more intimate prayer life. Sharing powerful insights from the the true legend of Honi the circle maker, a first-century Jewish sage whose bold prayer ended a drought and saved a generation, you will learn a new way to pray. Discover the power of bold prayer and even bolder faith in God's promises.
What’s the problem with drawing circles and standing within them when we pray? According to beginningandend.com:
· The Circle Maker teaches a new method of prayer by drawing a circle either on the ground or in the Bible based on an old Jewish legend from the Talmud and misuses verses from the Bible to put a new spin on the Prosperity Gospel heresy that wrongly teaches that Christians can receive whatever material blessing they want from God. Not only is this a false teaching and heresy, it is also embracing concepts from witchcraft. The popularity of this book among Christians is yet another sign of the growing apostasy as the church moves away from the Bible to adopt any new method even if it is linked to the occult.
Is it possible that the traditional Christian is missing out on something?
· See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authority. (Colossians 2:8-10; ESV)
In Christ, we have everything we need. Even more, everything that is in Christ becomes ours. In view of our more-than-abundant inheritance, it is hard to believe that we are missing out if we fail to jump into a prayer circle. Besides, in Christ is buried all wisdom. Therefore, Paul prayed that the Church would appreciate the riches that we have in Christ:
· …that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments. (Colossians 2:2-4)
We have riches of which we are unaware. Consequently, we are vulnerable to the temptation that we are lacking something, maybe even a prayer circle.
Paul also insisted that we have everything that we need for our life in the Lord through His Word:
· ALL Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be COMPLETE, equipped for EVERY good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
This suggests that if the prayer circle is so essential, then Scripture would have taught us about it. However, it contains not even a whisper about this or any other mystical technique. Instead, Scripture teaches us about the things that will block our prayers – sins, disobedience, rebellion, and a failure to confess and repent. There is never a hint that we do not receive because we haven’t constructed a prayer circle.
Instead, as God warned through Isaiah, we go astray when we leave the circle of the Scriptures:
· And when they say to you, “Inquire of the mediums and the necromancers who chirp and mutter,” should not a people inquire of their God? Should they inquire of the dead on behalf of the living? To the teaching and to the testimony! If they will not speak according to this word, it is because they have no [light of] dawn. (Isaiah 8:19-20)