Prayers of the Early Church
J. Manning Potts
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Prayers of the Early Church, edited by J. Manning Potts was first published in 1908. It contains a selection of prayers, arranged chronologically, and collected from many old books of prayers and devotional materials. Chapters include; New Testament Prayers (Simeon, Mary, Jesus, Stephen, Paul, Peter); Other First Century Prayers (Clement of Rome, Clementine Liturgy, Syrian Clementine Liturgy); Second Century Prayers (Polycarp, Ignatius, Liturgy of St. James, Barnabas, Clement of Alexandria, Irenaeus); Third Century Prayers (Old Gallican Sacramentary, Liturgy of St. Mark, Eastern Church Liturgy, Eastern Church Vespers); Fourth Century Prayers (Coptic Liturgy of St. Cyril, Ambrose, Nerses of Clajes, Gallican Sacramentary, Armenian Liturgy, Basil, Chrysostom, Augustine, Apostolic Constitutions); and, Fifth Century Prayers (Liturgy of the Nestorians, Ancient Collect, Leonine Sacramentary, Gelasian Sacramentary, Liturgy of the Blessed Apostles).
This book has 32 pages in the PDF version, and was originally published in 1908.
Production notes: This ebook of Prayers of the Early Church was published by Global Grey on the 19th July 2021. The artwork used for the cover is 'Good Friday' by Albin Egger-Lienz.
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Excerpt from 'Prayers of the Early Church'
1. New Testament Prayers
The Prayer of Simeon
Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word; for mine eyes have seen thy salvation, which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.—Luke 2:29.
And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. He hath holpen his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy.—Luke 1:46-54.
Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane
O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.—Matt. 26:39, 42.
Jesus’ High Priestly Prayer
These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: as thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was. I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word. Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee. For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.—John 17:1-8.
Jesus Prays From the Cross
Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.—Luke 23:34.
Father, into Thy hands I commend my spirit.—Luke 23:46.
Prayer of Stephen
And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.—Acts 7:59-60.
That Christ May Dwell in Your Hearts
Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places.
For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto him be glory forever and ever. Amen.—Epistle to the Ephesians 1:15-20; 3:14-21.
For Friends and Relatives
O God, the Father of glory, the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom every family in heaven and earth is named, thou who hast set the solitary in families, grant to all members of this family and to all the members of our different families, that, according to the riches of thy glory, we may be strengthened with might by thy Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in our hearts by faith; that we, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that we may be filled with all the fulness of God; through the eternal Christ our Saviour. Amen.—Adapted: Ephesians 1:17; 3:15-19.
For a Knowledge of God’s Will
O Almighty God, we are confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in us, will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: we pray that our love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; that we may approve things that are excellent; that we may be sincere and without offense, till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God. Amen.—Adapted: Philippians 1:6-11.
Persecuted for Righteousness’ Sake
O Lord, our heavenly Father, grant to thy children who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake that our conversation may be as becometh the Gospel of Christ; that we may stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the Gospel; that in nothing terrified by our adversaries we may be steadfast in behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake, who liveth forever and ever. Amen.—Adapted: Philippians 1:27-29.
For Spiritual Desires
Our Father, we most humbly beseech Thee to give unto this house, and unto each member of it in particular, to stand fast in the Lord. May we be of the same mind in the Lord. May we rejoice in the Lord alway. Grant that whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, if there be any praise, may we think on these things, may we know both how to be abased, and how to abound. May we do all things through Christ which strengtheneth us, knowing that God shall supply all our need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Amen.—Adapted: Philippians 4.
Patience and Longsuffering
For this cause we also, ... do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us unto the kingdom of his dear Son: in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins.
Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.—Adapted: Epistles to the Colossians 1:9-14 and Philippians 4:20.