Matthew Henry’s “Method For Prayer”

Consider your Evil Sins in Light of your Moral Knowledge and Profession of Faith

Confession 2.15 | ESV

We must aggravate* our sins and take notice of those things which make them more heinous in the sight of God and more dangerous to ourselves.

I bewail before you all my iniquities, all my transgressions, and all my sins. Leviticus 16:21(ESV)

The more knowledge we have of good and evil, the greater is our sin.

I have known my Master’s will but have not done it, and therefore deserve a severe beating. Luke 12:47(ESV)

I have known the way of the LORD and the justice of my God, and yet have broken the yoke and burst the bonds. Jeremiah 5:4-5(ESV)

I have known God’s decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, and yet have not only done them, but given approval to those who practice them. Romans 1:32(ESV)

I have taught others, and yet have not taught myself; Romans 2:21(ESV) and while I profess to know God, I have denied him by my works. Titus 1:16(ESV)

The greater profession we have made of religion, the greater has been our sin.

I call myself after the holy city and stay myself on the God of Israel and confess his name, but not in truth and in righteousness. Isaiah 48:1-2(ESV) For I have dishonored that worthy name by which I have been called, James 2:23(ESV) and given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme. 2 Samuel 12:14(ESV)

I have named the name of Christ, and yet have not departed from iniquity. 2 Timothy 2:19(ESV)

* The author means that we must look at our sins in the worst light, to see just how evil they are, taking into account the persons we have offended, the nature of the offense, the circumstances of our sin, etc. See The Westminster Larger Catechism, Questions 150 and 151. Editor.

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