Matthew Henry Quotes


Matthew Henry (18 October 1662 – 22 June 1714) was a nonconformist minister and author, born in Wales but spending much of his life in England.  He was born at Broad Oak, Iscoyd, a farmhouse on the borders of Flintshire and Shropshire. His father, Philip Henry, was a Church of England cleric and had just been ejected under the Act of Uniformity 1662. Unlike most of his fellow-sufferers, Philip possessed some private means, and was thus able to give his son a good education. Henry’s sister was diarist Sarah Savage.[1] Matthew went first to a school at Islington, at that time a village just outside London, and then to Gray’s Inn, in the heart of the capital. He soon gave up his legal studies for theology, and in 1687 became minister of a Presbyterian congregation at Chester.[2] While in Chester, Henry founded the Presbyterian Chapel in Trinity Street.[3] He moved again in 1712 to Mare Street, Hackney. Two years later, on 22 June 1714, he died suddenly of apoplexy at the Queen’s Aid House (41 High Street) in Nantwich, while on a journey from Chester to London.



“The woman was made of a rib out of the side of Adam; not made out of his head to rule over him, nor out of his feet to be trampled upon by him, but out of his side to be equal with him, under his arm to be protected, and near his heart to be beloved.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Extraordinary afflictions are not always the punishment of extraordinary sins, but sometimes the trial of extraordinary graces.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Peace is such a precious jewel that I would give anything for it but truth.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The fear of God reigning in the heart is the beauty of the soul.” ~ Matthew Henry


“It is easy to be religious when religion is in fashion; but it is an evidence of strong faith and resolution to swim against a stream to heaven, and to appear for God when no one else appears for Him.” ~ Matthew Henry


“A modest dress is a very good thing, if it be the genuine indication of a humble heart, and is to instruct; but it is a bad thing if it be the hypocritical disguise of a proud ambitious heart, and is to deceive. Let men be really as good as they seem to be, but not seem to be better than really they are.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The way to preserve the peace of the church is to preserve its purity.” ~ Matthew Henry


“No man will say, “There is no God” ’till he is so hardened in sin that it has become his interest that there should be none to call him to account.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Men cannot expect to do ill and fare well, but to find that done to them which they did to others.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The beauty of holiness is that which the grave, that consumes all other beauty, cannot touch, or do any damage to.” ~ Matthew Henry


“As if men did not die fast enough, they are ingenious at finding out ways to destroy one another.” ~ Matthew Henry


“To wait on God is to live a life of desire towards him, delight in him, dependence on him, and devotedness to him.” ~ Matthew Henry


“We must believe that He is able to do what He will, wise to do what is best, and good, according to His promise, to do what is best for us, if we love Him, and serve Him.” ~ Matthew Henry


“When God intends great mercy for his people, he first of all sets them praying.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The anger of a meek man is like fire struck out of steel, hard to be got out, and when it is, soon gone.” ~ Matthew Henry


“For us to err, with the Bible in our hands, is the effect of pride, sloth, and carelessness.” ~ Matthew Henry


“There may be idols in the heart, where there are none in the sanctuary.” ~ Matthew Henry


“When men drive God’s word from them he justly permits their delusions, and answers them according to the multitude of their idols.” ~ Matthew Henry


“All those who rejoice in the success of the church’s enemies will share with them in their downfall; and those who have most indulged themselves in pride and pleasure are the least able to bear calamities; their sorrows will be as excessive as their pleasure and jollity were before.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Note, It is common for those that are indulgent to their own sin to be severe against the sins of others.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Even when God is coming towards his people in ways of mercy, he sometimes takes such methods as that they may think themselves but ill treated.” ~Matthew Henry


“All obedience begins in the affections, and nothing in religion is done right, that is not done there first.” ~ Matthew Henry


“He that is in haste may contract much guilt in a little time. What we say or do unadvisedly when we are hot, we must unsay or undo again when we are cool, or do worse.” ~ Matthew Henry


“When we begin to fret and be uneasy, we ought to consider that God hears all our murmurings, though silent, and only the murmurings of the heart.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Though Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, yet not from the command of it” ~ Matthew Henry


“Events are not determined by the wheel of fortune, which is blind, but by the wheels of Providence, which are full of eyes” ~ Matthew Henry


“Outward losses drive good people to their prayers, but bad people to their curses.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The wits or wills of men, their inventions or their injunctions, cannot make that to be sin which the law of God has not made to be so.” ~ Matthew Henry


“That creature which we idolize God justly removes from us, or embitters to us.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The treasures of wisdom are hidden not from us, but for us, in Christ.” ~ Matthew Henry


“God will always have a church on earth; but he never said it should be infallible, or perfectly pure from corruption on this side heaven.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Those that name the name of Christ, but do not depart from iniquity, as that name binds them to do, name it in vain; their worship is vain” ~ Matthew Henry


“The way to forget our miseries, is to remember the God of our mercies.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Note, Our sorrow upon any account is sinful and inordinate when it diverts us from our duty to God and embitters our comfort in Him” ~ Matthew Henry


“It is a great mercy to be reclaimed and called home when we go astray, though it be by a tempest.” ~ Matthew Henry


“God’s time to help is when things are at the worst; and Providence verifies the paradox, The worse the better.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Pride makes a god of self, covetousness makes a god of money, sensuality makes a god of the belly; whatever is esteemed or loved, feared or served, delighted in or depended on, more than God, that (whatever it is) we do in effect make a god of.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Those that look with contempt upon worldly honours shall be recompensed with the honour that cometh from God, which is the true honour.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Note, Religion teaches good manners, and obliges us to give honour to those to whom honour is due.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Prayer is a salve for every sore, even the sorest, a remedy for every malady, even the most grievous.” ~ Matthew Henry


“None talk more absurdly than murmurers.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Wherever there is true grace, there is a desire for more grace.” ~ Matthew Henry


“We must first see the righteousness of God condemning, and then the righteousness of God justifying will appear worthy of all acceptation.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Sin is the death of the soul.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Those that multiply gods multiply griefs to themselves; for, whoever thinks one God too little, will find two too many, and yet hundreds not enough.” ~ Matthew Henry


“We may be in the way of our duty, and yet may meet with troubles, which Providence brings us into for the trial of our faith, and that God may be glorified in our relief.” ~ Matthew Henry


“God gives us of the good things of this life, not only for necessity, but for delight, that we may not only serve him, but serve him cheerfully.” ~ Matthew Henry


“By having fellowship with sin, which is abominable, we make ourselves abominable.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Strong faith is often exercised with strong trials and put upon hard services.” ~ Matthew Henry


“He will come quickly; let this word be always sounding in our ear” ~ Matthew Henry


“Those who are unconcerned in the affairs of their brethren, and take no care, when they have opportunity, to prevent their hurt in their bodies, goods, or good name, especially in their souls, do, in effect, speak Cain’s language.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The greatest sign of God’s displeasure against any person or people is His taking His law from them.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Those who complain most are most to be complained of.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Those that would be kept from bad courses must keep from bad company; it is dangerous living in a bad neighbourhood; others’ sins will be our snares, if we look not well to ourselves.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Many mourn for their sins that do not truly repent of them, weep bitterly for them, and yet continue in love and league with them.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Be not desirous to know what people say; if they speak well of thee, it will feed thy pride, if ill, it will stir up thy passion. See that thou approve thyself to God and thine own conscience, and then heed not what men say of thee; it is easier to pass by twenty affronts than to avenge one. When any harm is done to us, examine whether we have not done as bad to others.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Wickedness proceedeth from the wicked; what can be expected from unrighteous men but more unrighteousness?” ~ Matthew Henry


“Those that would find mercy with men must seek it of God, who has all hearts in His hands, and turns them as He pleases.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The law only shows us our disease; the gospel shows us our help in Christ.” ~ Matthew Henry


“The greatest and best man in the world must say, By the grace of God I am what I am, but God says absolutely… “I am that I am.”” ~ Matthew Henry


“Grace does not run in the blood, but corruption does. A sinner begets a sinner, but a saint does not beget a saint.” ~ Matthew Henry



“Christ’s followers cannot expect better treatment in the world than their Master had.” ~ Matthew Henry


“As God’s mercies are new every morning toward His people, so His anger is new every morning against the wicked.” ~ Matthew Henry


“When we take least notice of our good deeds ourselves, God takes most notice of them.” ~ Matthew Henry


“A lion in God’s cause must be a lamb in his own.” ~ Matthew Henry


“It is a good thing to have a heart within us smiting us for sins that seem little; it is a sign that conscience is awake and tender, and will be the means of preventing greater sins.” ~ Matthew Henry


“He whose head is in Heaven need not fear to put his feet into the grave.” ~ Matthew Henry


“Idleness gives great advantage to the tempter. Standing waters gather filth.” ~ Matthew Henry