He was born at Edinburgh, the son of Dr. Gregory Grant, by Mary, daughter of Sir Archibald Grant of Monymusk (son of Francis Grant, Lord Cullen). He matriculated at St John's College, Oxford, on 21 October 1795, and took his degree of B.A. in 1799, and M.A. in 1805.
Ordained in the Church of England by Henry Majendie, Grant became curate to Edward Owen. He was in succession at Ormskirk, Lancashire, Frodsham and Latchford in Cheshire, where he succeeded James Glazebrook as perpetual curate at the chapel of ease in 1803.
In 1809 Grant moved to London, as curate of Hornsey, and then of and St Pancras. in Middlesex. Through the interest of Majendie, he was presented to the living of Binbrooke St. Mary, Lincolnshire, in 1818, and to the incumbency of Kentish Town, London, in 1822, where he remained till his death on 4 December 1844. The Jesuit priest Ignatius Grant (1820–1904), originally Johnson Grant, was his son.
Grant wrote, in addition to occasional sermons and pamphlets:
- ‘A Manual of Religious Knowledge,’ 1800, 2nd ed. 1805, 3rd ed. 1809.
- ‘Reverie considered as connected with Literature,’ 1802 (in ‘Memoirs’ of Manchester Literary and Philosophical Society).
- ‘A Summary of the History of the English Church,’ 1811-26, 4 vols.
- ‘Sermons,’ 1812.
- ‘Sacred Hours.’
- ‘Arabia, a Poem,’ 1815.
- ‘God is Love, freely translated from Eckartshausen,’ 1817.
- ‘The Crucifixion, a Series of Lent Lectures,’ 1821.
- ‘A Memoir of Miss Frances Augusta Bell,’ 1827.
- ‘The Last Things. a Series of Lent Lectures,’ 1828.
- ‘Six Lectures on Liberality and Expediency,’ 1830.
- ‘A Course of Lectures for the Year,’ 1833-1835, 2 vols.
- ‘The Joshuad, a Poem,’ anonymous, 1837.
- ‘Sketches in Divinity,' 1840.
- ‘Discourses, &c.,’ 1843.
- Curthoys, M. C. "Grant, Johnson". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/11275. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
- Stephen, Leslie; Lee, Sidney, eds. (1890). "Grant, Johnson". Dictionary of National Biography. 22. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
- John Henry Newman (23 February 2006). The Letters and Diaries of John Henry Newman Volume IX: Littlemore and the Parting of Friends May 1842-October 1843. Oxford University Press. p. 484 note 1. ISBN 978-0-19-925458-3.
- The Tablet, Obituary November 1904.
This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Stephen, Leslie; Lee, Sidney, eds. (1890). "Grant, Johnson". Dictionary of National Biography. 22. London: Smith, Elder & Co.