Matthew Henry wrote A Method for Prayer nearly 300 years ago. Among the many editions and revisions of this book that have been produced throughout the years, Ligon Duncan edited and revised a version which was published in 1994. This project has been built off of the efforts invested by Dr. Duncan and others in that publication.

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Resorting to a more scriptural pattern of prayer may be a simple (but profound) answer to many problems in our practice of prayer. There are a number of reasons that could be given as to why Christians should “Pray the Bible,” but the ones below combine to make a rather convincing argument:


1 Praying scripturally will teach us what prayer is, even while we do it.
2 It will correct “shopping list” views of prayer which abound in the Christian community.
3 It will begin to solve in our own minds the question of “unanswered prayer.”
4 It will remind us of just how much there is to pray about day by day.
5 It will teach us of the extreme urgency of prayer.
6 It will return proportion to prayers long on petition, but short on adoration, confession, and thanksgiving.
7 It will instruct us how best to pray for ministers, missionaries, and one another.
8 It will show us the proper way to approach God in prayer.
9 It will remind us of the good things that God does for us (which we, more often than not, take for granted).
10 It will remind us to always give thanks to God (which, paradoxically, is so important for our own assurance of His faithfulness in answering prayer).
11 It will begin to engrave in our minds biblical patterns of thought which can help immunize us from the enticing folly of the world’s view of life.
12 It will force us to rehearse the solemn warnings and precious promises of God (which will do eternal good to our souls).
13 It will move us from our inherent man-centeredness in prayer to a biblical, God-centered way of praying.

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