"Prayer is so great and necessary a part of religion that every degree of assistance in it will be always acceptable to pious minds. The inward and spiritual performance of this worship is taught us in many excellent discourses, but a regular scheme of prayer as a Christian exercise or a piece of holy skill, has been much neglected. The form, method and expression, together with other aspects of it, such as voice and gesture, have been so little treated that few Christians have any clear or distinct knowledge of them. Yet all these have all too powerful an influence upon the soul in its most spiritual exercises, and both nature and Scripture provide various directions about them. Now while institutes of logic and rhetoric abound that teach us to reason aright and to speak well among men, why should the rules of speaking to God be so little taught?"
British theologian ISAAC WATTS (1674-1748) wrote more than 750 hymns, many of which are still performed today. But he was also a profoundly influential thinker in the realms of logic and general philosophy-he is said to have inspired his fellow Englishman, electricity pioneer Michael Faraday. This volume was an enormous success when it was first published in 1724, and went through numerous editions-this is a replica of an 1825 reprinting. (Watts' equally popular 1741 follow-up, The Improvement of the Mind, is also available from Cosimo). Here you'll learn: . What is logic . The differences between perception and ideas . How words and language are translated into knowledge . The power behind the human drive to name objects and concepts . Understanding judgment and prejudice . Reasoning and syllogism . And much more.
Few people know that “Joy to the World” – the world’s most popular Christmas song – wasn’t written for Christmas at all. Isaac Watts wrote it in imitation of Psalm 98. That psalm has nothing to say about the coming of the Messiah as a child; it is instead about the Messiah who comes in glory, and righteousness, and victory over evil, to judge the world and comfort the faithful. In other words, Isaac Watts meant “Joy to the World” as a spiritual reflection on Christ’s soon-to-be, expected, triumphant return to earth. This book explores this theme with selected readings from elsewhere in the writings of Watts, as a way of preparing our hearts for Christmas morning.