These are the only three existing ante-Nicene treatises on the Lord’s Prayer, and they became the starting point for many other commentaries. Of the three, however, only the discourse of Cyprian is an address to catechumens. Tertullian’s treatise contains additional material on the conduct of worship and on prayer in the assembly, and Origen’s commentary is a vast work on the whole subject of prayer, as much suited to advanced learners in the school of Christ as to those preparing for baptism.
In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Scripture citations link directly to English translations, and important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.
“Before all else, the teacher of peace and master of unity desires that we should not make our prayer individually and alone, as whoever prays by himself prays only for himself. We do not say: ‘My father, who are in the heavens,’ nor ‘Give me my bread this day.’ Nor does anybody request that his debt be pardoned for himself alone, nor ask that he alone be not led into temptation and delivered from the evil one. Our prayer is common and collective, and when we pray we pray not for one but for all people, because we are all one people together. The God of peace and master of concord, who taught that we should be united, wanted one to pray in this manner for all, as he himself bore all in one.” (Page 69)
“Therefore, when we ask for our daily bread, we are asking that we should perpetually be in Christ and that we should not be separated from his body.” (Page 46)
“Thus the prayer which is instituted by Christ is made up of three parts: out of word, by which it is spoken, out of spirit, by which it is powerful, out of reason, in that it reconciles.” (Page 41)
“We go on to say: ‘Let your will be done in heaven and on earth.’ We say this not so that God might do what he wishes, but that we should be able to do what God wishes.” (Page 75)
“Beyond this, the Lord, of necessity, counsels that we should say: ‘Do not allow us to be led into temptation’ in our prayer.19 We are shown in this clause that the adversary can do nothing against us unless God allows it beforehand. Thus all our fear and our devotion and our heedfulness should be directed toward God, so that he when we are in temptation he allow no power to the evil one apart from that which he grants.” (Page 84)
Alistair Stewart-Sykes has provided us herein with very readable, accurate, and generally inclusive translations of these three great spiritual classics in a way that should appeal to all readers. What is more, by means of his helpful introductions and notes, he has placed these works in their respective historical/liturgical/theological contexts. This volume merits wide use and readership in several different environments, from general reading to parish education sessions to the university and seminary classroom.
—Maxwell E. Johnson, professor of liturgical studies, University of Notre Dame
Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullianus, anglicised as Tertullian (c. 160–220 AD), was a prolific early Christian author from Carthage in the Roman province of Africa. He is the first Christian author to produce an extensive corpus of Latin Christian literature. He also was a notable early Christian apologist and a polemicist against heresy. Tertullian has been called “the father of Latin Christianity” and “the founder of Western theology.
Saint Cyprian was bishop of Carthage and an important early Christian writer, many of whose Latin works are still extant. He was born circa the beginning of the 3rd century in North Africa, perhaps at Carthage, where he received a classical education. After converting to Christianity, he became a bishop (249) and eventually died a martyr at Carthage.
Origen (c. 182–251) was a Christian scholar and theologian and one of the most distinguished of the fathers of the early Christian Church. He is thought to have been born at Alexandria, and died at Caesarea. His writings are important as the first serious intellectual attempt to describe Christianity.
Alistair Stewart-Sykes is a leading scholar of Christian liturgical origins. The author of numerous books and articles on early Christianity and its liturgy, he had retired from teaching and is a vicar in the Diocese of Salisbury, England.