Thursday, August 22, 2019

Early Christian Quotes on Worship

Early Christian Quotes on Worship


Justin Martyr’s First Apology 

(Mid-2nd Century)

Chapter 67:


On the day called Sunday, all who live in cities or in the country gather together to one place, and the memoirs of the apostles or the writings of the prophets are read for as long as time permits. Then, when the reader has finished, the president verbally instructs and encourages the imitation of these good things. Then we all rise together and pray, and when our prayer is over, we share bread and wine and water, and the president offers prayers and thanksgivings, according to his ability, and the people assent, saying Amen. There is a distribution to each and participation of the elements. A portion is sent by the deacons to those who are absent.


And they who are well to do, and willing, give what each thinks fit. What is collected is deposited with the president, who helps the orphans and widows and those who, through sickness or any other cause, are in need. A portion is given to those in prison and the strangers staying among us. This takes care of all who are in need.


But Sunday is the day on which we all hold our common assembly because it is the first day on which God, having made a change in the darkness and matter, made the world; and Jesus Christ, our Savior, rose from the dead on the same day. He was crucified on the day before that of Saturn (Saturday). On the day after that of Saturn (Saturday), which is the day of the Sun (Sunday), He appeared to His apostles and disciples.



Fragments of Irenaeus

(Late 2nd Century)

Paragraph 7:


The custom of not kneeling on Sunday is a symbol of the resurrection, through which we have been set free from sins and death. This was done by the grace of Christ, who put our sins to death. This custom gained popularity in the days of the apostles, as the blessed Irenaeus, the martyr and bishop of Lyons, declares in his essay On Easter, in which he makes mention of Pentecost. He mentions the feast, during which we do not kneel, because it is of equal significance with the Lord's day.


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