School of Theology and Seminary Graduate Papers/Theses

Date of Award


Document Type

Graduate Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Theology


School of Theology and Seminary

First Advisor

William Cahoy

Subject Categories

Liturgy and Worship | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion


This paper explores the development of Christology in the early Church concluding with a look at Angel Christology in the Roman Canon and Logos Christology in The Prayers of Sarapion of Thmuis. A lack of Christological precision in early Christian praying has anachronistically led modern scholars to question the orthodoxy of early prayers. This paper argues that just as liturgical scholars have long realized that the development of liturgy moved from diversity to uniformity, so too this is the case with theology. The movement to tighten the borders of orthodoxy has led to liturgical standardization. Just as the dating of liturgical sources can be based on philological methods, their dating can also be approximated through an analysis of the theological ideas present within their text. It is the Christological and pneumatological remnants present within a prayer’s epiclesis that provides crucial insights to a prayer’s provenance, dating, theology, and orthodoxy. This paper seeks to contextualize two Eucharistic prayers amid now obscure Christologies which were prominent in the first few centuries of the early Church.



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