Origen of Alexandria’s closing comment on prayer

I’m reading for an assignment for school and came across this final paragraph from the mysterious character from Church History, Origen of Alexandria:

“It seems to me I should go on to discuss the topics of prayer and then bring this treatise to a close. It seems to me there are four topics that need to be sketched out and that I have found them scattered in the Scriptures. Each person should organize his prayer according to these topics.

This is what they are: In the beginning and the preface of prayer something having the force of praise should be said of God through Christ, who is praised with Him, and by the Holy Spirit, who is hymned with Him.

After this each person should place general thanksgivings, bringing forward for thanksgiving the benefits given many people and those he has himself received from God.

After thanksgiving it seems to me that he ought to blame himself bitterly before God for his own sins and then ask first, for healing that he may be delivered from the habit that brings him to sin and, second, for forgiveness of the sins that have been committed.

After confession, the fourth topic that seems to me must be added is the request for great and heavenly things, both private and general, and concerning his household and his dearest.

And, finally, the prayer should be concluded with a doxology of God through Christ in the Holy Spirit…



Published by joeskillen

I'm a husband, dad of 2, Pastor at Eastminster Presbyterian Church in Wichita, KS.

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