Matthew Henry’s “Method For Prayer”

Lament your Disposition to Evil and Confess your Blind Understanding and Stubborn Will

Confession 2.3 | NIV

I must lament my present corrupt disposition to that which is evil, and my aversion to and impotency in that which is good. I must look into my own heart and confess with holy blushing:

The blindness of my understanding and its unaptness to admit the rays of the divine light.

By nature I am darkened in my understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in me due to the hardening of my heart. Ephesians 4:18(NIV)

The things that come from the Spirit of God are foolishness to the man without the Spirit, and, if left to myself, I cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. 1 Corinthians 2:14(NIV)

I am skilled in doing evil; I know not how to do good. Jeremiah 4:22(NIV) I know nothing, I understand nothing; I walk about in darkness. Psalm 82:5(NIV)

God speaks – now one way, now another – though I may not perceive it. Job 33:14(NIV) I am ever hearing but never understanding; Matthew 13:14(NIV) and I see people, yet they look like trees walking around. Mark 8:24(NIV)

The stubbornness of my will and its unaptness to submit to the rules of the divine law.

I have within me a sinful mind, which is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Romans 8:7(NIV)

You have written for me the many things of your law, but I have regarded them as something alien; Hosea 8:12(NIV) and my corrupt heart has been sometimes ready to say, “Who is the Almighty, that I should serve him?” Job 21:15(NIV) And that I would certainly do everything I said I would. Jeremiah 44:17(NIV) For I have followed the ways of my own heart and whatever my eyes have seen. Ecclesiastes 11:9(NIV) I have followed my sinful nature’s desires and thoughts. Ephesians 2:3(NIV)

The sinews of my neck have been iron, Isaiah 48:4(NIV) and I have made my heart as hard as flint. I have refused to pay attention; stubbornly I have turned my back, Zechariah 7:11-12(NIV) and stopped up my ears like a cobra that will not heed the tune of the charmer, however skillful the enchanter may be. Psalm 58:4-5(NIV)

How I have hated discipline! How my heart has spurned correction! I have not obeyed my teachers or listened to my instructors. Proverbs 5:12-13(NIV)

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