A few years ago, while I was in seminary, I heard an interview where Ligon Duncan recommended the book by Matthew Henry, A Method for Prayer. Henry’s book is his excellent example of what it means to prayer in Scriptural language. Since then, Dr. Duncan has written a chapter in a book on Puritan classics explaining the significance of A Method for Prayer. Much of what he says has rung true for me as I have sought to use Henry’s book to help my own prayer life.

However, the Scriptural language of Henry’s day is not my language. It closely resembles the language of the King James Version. As a personal project, I have begun ‘revising’ Henry’s work, based on the English Standard Version. More than just change the verses, I have also done some slight editing to reflect a more personal, singular praying rather than Henry’s plural language. Although, the plural language helps ministers learn to pray over their congregations, I am hoping to make Henry’s work more accessible as a personal devotional tool.

As I complete my work, I will post the chapters here. Although, this project is mainly for use personal benefit and use in my congregation, there is a chance (however slight!) that it will one day be published. Therefore, if you download the files and find them helpful, please understand they are for personal use only.

Chapter 1

Chapter 2 [in progress]

UPDATE: Ligon Duncan beat me to it and has this completed project (and much more) online at Pray the Bible

4 thoughts on “Method for Prayer (ESV Edition)

  1. Cristian M. says:

    Hi John, my name is Cristian and I’m from Chile.

    I had the chance to work on the Spanish edition of Dr. Duncan’s project (http://es.matthewhenry.org) but yesterday at church I found myself thinking that maybe we still need something new (not just an update)… I’m no Matthew Henry but who knows… Maybe one of these days I’ll feel inspired enough!

    Well this is funny… I did not get here because of Henry’s Method… I was just looking for some information about the NIV Proclamation Bible and found one of your tweets which in turn brought me here.

    1. John says:

      I didn’t even know there was a Spanish version of the site. That’s great! If you ever decide to do a Method Part 2, come back and let us know!


  2. mrmatthewhenry says:

    Hi, I thought you might like to freely use this on your website, or give to others or for yourself. It’s a free prayer book by Matthew Henry called ‘A Method for Prayer’ 1710 edition, with added devotional prayers, Bible helps and a glossary of 2400 words of the KJV. You can use the audio files for the book if you like. http://www.mrmatthewhenry.com

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