A. The sinfulness of man, and his distance from God
by reason thereof, being so great, as that we can have no access into his
presence without a mediatora; and there being none in heaven or
earth appointed to, or fit for, that glorious work but Christ aloneb,
we are to pray in no other name but his onlyc.
a John 14:6; Isa.59:2; Eph.3:12 b John
6:27; Heb.7:25-27; 1 Tim.2:5 c Col.3:17; Heb.13:15
Q. 182. How doth the Spirit help
us to pray?
A. We not knowing what to pray for as we ought, the
Spirit helpeth our infirmities, by enabling us to understand both for whom,
and what, and how prayer is to be made; and by working and quickening in our
hearts (although not in all persons, nor at all times, in the same measure)
those apprehensions, affections, and graces which are requisite for the right
performance of that dutya.
a Rom.8:26,27; Ps.10:17; Zech.12:10
Q. 183. For whom are we to pray?
A. We are to pray for the whole church of Christ
upon eartha; for magistratesb, and ministersc;
for ourselvesd, our brethrene, yea, our enemiesf;
and for all sorts of men livingg, or that shall live hereafterh;
but not for the deadi, nor for those that are known to have sinned
the sin unto deathk.
a Eph.6:18; Ps.28:9 b 1 Tim.2:1,2 c
Col.4:3 d Gen.32:11 e James f
Matt.5:44 g 1 Tim.2:1,2 h John 17:20; 2 Sam.7:29 i 2
Sam.12:21-23 k 1 John 5:16
Q. 184. For what things are we to
A. We are to pray for all things tending to the
glory of Goda, the welfare of the churchb, our ownc
or others goodd; but not for any thing that is unlawfule.
a Matt.6:9 b Ps.51:18; Ps.122:6 c
Matt.7:11 d Ps.125:4 e 1 John 5:14
Q. 185. How are we to pray?
A. We are to pray with an awful apprehension of the
majesty of Goda, and deep sense of our own unworthinessb,
necessitiesc, and sinsd; with penitente,
thankfulf, and enlarged heartsg; with understandingh,
faithi, sincerityk, fervencyl, lovem,
and perseverancen, waiting upon himo, with humble
submission to his willp.
a Eccl.5:1 b Gen.18:27; Gen.32:10 c
Luke 15:17-19 d Luke 18:13,14 e Ps.51:17 f Phil.4:6 g
1 Sam.1:15; 1 Sam.2:1 h 1 Cor.14:15 i Mark 11:24; James
1:6 k Ps.145:18; Ps.17:1 l James 5:16m 1
Tim.2:8 n Eph.6:18 o Micah 7:7 p Matt.26:39
Q. 186. What rule hath God given
for our direction in the duty of prayer?
A. The whole word of God is of use to direct us in
the duty of prayera; but the special rule of direction is that form
of prayer which our Saviour Christ taught his disciples, commonly called The
a 1 John 5:14b Matt.6:9-13; Luke 11:2-4
Q. 187. How is the Lord's prayer
to be used ?
A. The Lord's prayer is not only for direction, as a
pattern, according to which we are to make other prayers; but may also be used
as a prayer, so that it be done with understanding, faith, reverence, and
other graces necessary to the right performance of the duty of prayera.
a Matt.6:9 compared with Luke 11:2
Q. 188. Of how many parts doth
the Lord's prayer consist?
A The Lord's prayer consists of three parts; a
preface, petitions, and a conclusion.
Q. 189. What doth the preface of
the Lord's prayer teach us?
A. The preface of the Lord's prayer (contained in
these words, Our Father which art in heavena,) teacheth us, when we
pray, to draw near to God with confidence of his fatherly goodness, and our
interest thereinb; with reverence, and all other child-like
dispositionsc, heavenly affectionsd, and due
apprehensions of his sovereign power, majesty, and gracious condescensione:
as also, to pray with and for othersf.
a Matt.6:9 b Luke 11:13; Rom.8:15 c
Isa.64:9 d Ps.123:1; Lam.3:41 e Isa.63:15,16; Neh.1:4-6 f
Q. 190. What do we pray for in
the first petition?
A. In the first petition, (which is, Hallowed be thy
namea) acknowledging the utter inability and indisposition that is
in ourselves and all men to honour God arightb, we pray, that God
would by his grace enable and incline us and others to know, to acknowledge,
and highly to esteem himc, his titlesd, attributese,
ordinances, wordf, works, and whatsoever he is pleased to make
himself known byg; and to glorify him in thought, wordh,
and deedi: that he would prevent and remove atheismk,
ignorancel, idolatrym, profanenessn, and
whatsoever is dishonourable to himo; and, by his over-ruling
providence, direct and dispose of all things to his own gloryp.
a Matt.6:9 b 2 Cor.3:5; Ps.51:15 c
Ps.67:2,3 d Ps.83:18 e Ps.86:10-13,15 f 2 Thess.3:1;
Ps.147:19,20; Ps.138:1-3; 2 Cor.2:14,15 g Ps.145; Ps.8 h
Ps.103:1; Ps.19:14 i Phil.1:9,11 k Ps.67:1-4 l
Eph.1:17,18 m Ps.97:7 n Ps.74:18,22,23 o 2 Kings 19:15,16
p 2 Chron.20:6,10-12; Ps.83; Ps.140:4,8