Reformed and Puritan: Perspectives on Prayer

I was recently made aware of the coming title by RHB publications. I am really excited for two reasons.

1. One, because I sit close to one of the editors literally I sit right next to him. In the library (during my seminary years) my study desk was next to Brian Najapfour. I watched him for two years study Bunyan, Owen and Edwards on the issue of prayer and I am very excited to read this particular work that he and my M.A.R. advisor Dr. Beeke has worked on.

2. Secondly, because the Puritans on prayer were the master’s so it seems on the topic. Then again… that may have something to do with hearing Brian constantly talk about the Puritans and prayer for over two years day in and day out. I cannot for the title.

Edited by Joel R. Beeke and Brian G. Najapfour

Sample Pages

Description: In Taking Hold of God, you will enter the treasury of the church of Jesus Christ and discover some of its most valuable gems on the subject of Christian prayer. The writings of the Reformers and Puritans shine with the glory of God in Christ, offering us much wisdom and insight today that can make our own prayer lives more informed, more extensive, more fervent, and more effectual.  Six contemporary scholars explore the writings and prayer lives of several Reformers and Puritans—among them Martin Luther, John Calvin, William Perkins, Matthew Henry, and Jonathan Edwards—guiding us to growth in prayer and a more grateful communion with God.

Full Endorsements:

Taking Hold of God is a veritable gold mine on the subject of prayer. Beeke and Najapfour have brought together in one volume the teaching on prayer of the giants of the Reformation and Puritan eras: Luther, Calvin, Knox, Perkins, Bunyan, Henry, Edwards, and others. I was personally encouraged and stimulated to take my own prayer life to a higher and hopefully more productive level. All believers who have any desire to pray effectively will profit from this book.” — Jerry Bridges, a longtime staff member of the Navigators and author ofThe Pursuit of Holiness

“Many of us feel either infants in the school of prayer or intimidated and beaten down by those who accuse us of being prayer-less but do not teach us how to be prayer-full.  But here can be found nourishment, example, instruction, encouragement, and, yes, deep challenge, all in one volume. May these pages serve as a tonic for our weakness, a remedy for our sickness, and an inspiration to greater prayerfulness in our churches!” Sinclair B. Ferguson, senior minister of First Presbyterian Church of Columbia, South Carolina, and professor of Systematic Theology at Redeemer Theological Seminary, Dallas, Texas

“The Protestant Reformation brought a revolution to the life of prayer. This book opens up the story of how the Reformers like Luther and Calvin, followed by the Puritans like William Perkins and Matthew Henry, teach us a surprisingly new approach to the life of prayer.” —Hughes Oliphant Old, John H. Leith Professor of Reformed Theology and Worship, Erskine Theological Seminary, Due West, South Carolina

“Together, Beeke and Najapfour have produced a marvelously helpful and instructive volume on prayer drawn from such giants as Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Bunyan, Matthew Henry, and Jonathan Edwards. It is a veritable potpourri of spiritual insight and godly advice. Books on prayer often induce more guilt than help. Taking Hold of God, as the title itself suggests, aims at doing the latter. It beckons us, allures us, into the challenge of prayer itself: laying hold of a gracious Father who longs for our presence and delights to commune with His children. If you aim to read just one book on prayer this year, choose this one.” —Derek W. H. Thomas, John E. Richards Professor of Systematic and Practical Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, Mississippi


1. Martin Luther on Prayer and Reformation (Brian G. Najapfour)
2. John Calvin on Prayer as Communion with God (Joel R. Beeke)
3. John Knox: A Theologian of Prayer (Brian G. Najapfour)
4. William Perkins on the Lord’s Prayer (J. Stephen Yuille)
5. Anthony Burgess on Christ’s Prayer for Us (Joel R. Beeke)
6. John Bunyan on Praying with the Holy Spirit (Michael A. G. Haykin)
7. The Puritans on the Help of the Holy Spirit in Prayer (Johnny C. Serafini)
8. Matthew Henry on a Practical Method of Daily Prayer (Joel R. Beeke)
9. Thomas Boston and Praying to Our Father (Joel R. Beeke)
10. Jonathan Edwards on Prayer and the Triune God (Peter Beck)
11. Puritan Prayers for World Missions (Joel R. Beeke)
12. Prayerful Praying Today (Joel R. Beeke)
Scripture Index
Subject Index


Peter Beck, Joel R. Beeke, Michael A. G. Haykin, Brian G. Najapfour, Johnny C. Serafini, J. Stephen Yuille

About the Editors:

Joel R. Beeke is president and professor of Systematic Theology and Homiletics at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary, and a pastor of the Heritage Netherlands Reformed Congregation of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Brian G. Najapfour, a pastor from the Philippines, is a recent grad uate from Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary (Th.M.) and is a Ph.D. student at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.


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