The social message of the fourth petition in the Lord’s Prayer “give us this day our daily bread” in the commentaries of the Church Fathers


Abstract

The article discusses the problem of social message of the Fourth Petition in the Lord’s Prayer: “Give us this day our daily bread”. As Fathers of the Church comment on the content of the request, they find its fulfillment “in the hands” of the Christian themselves. This prayer will be answered insofar as the one in prayer adopts the right attitude towards material goods. According to the most ancient commentators, Disciple of Christ should care only about what is indispensable for everyday life. In addition, it is important to ask for bread only “this day” whereas “tomorrow” should be entrusted to God’s Providence. Here they often like to ap­peal to the Christ’s parable of the rich man, who yielded an abundant harvest (Lk 12, 16-20). Few Fathers, especially Cyprian of Carthage, Gregory of Nyssa and Pseudo-Chrysostom point out that the request for daily bread demands the active help to the needy, as well as the prevention of all forms of social injustice.


Keywords

daily bread; Church Fathers; social justice; God’s Providence; Lord's Prayer; Our Father

Ambrosius Mediolanensis, De sacramentis, ed. B. Botte, SCh 25bis, Paris 1961
Augustinus, De sermone Domini in monte, PL 34
Augustinus, Sermones, PL 38
Ayo N., The Lord’s Prayer: A Survey Theological and Literary, Notre Dame 2002
Brown M.J., „Panem nostrum”: The Problem of Petition and the Lord’s Prayer, „The Journal of Religion” 80 (2000)
Chromatius Aquileiensis, In evangelium Matthaei tract., PL 20
Cyprianus Carthaginensis, De Dominica oratione, ed. G. Hartel, CSEL 3/1, Vindobonae 1868
Cyrillus Hierosolymitanus, Mistagogiae 1-5, ed. A. Piédagnel, SCh 126, Paris 1966
Czyżewski B., Teocentryzm i antropocentryzm Modlitwy Pańskiej w przekazach patry-stycznych, Poznań 2012
Gregorius Nyssenus, De oratione Dominica or. I-V, PG 44
Hammerling R., The Lord’s Prayer in the Early Church, New York 2010
Hieronymus, Commentarii in Evangelium Matthaei, ed. D. Hurst – M. Adriaen, CCL 77, Turnhout 1969
Joannes Chrysostomus, In Mathaeum hom. 19, PG 57
Katechizm Kościoła Katolickiego, Poznań 1994
Maximus Confessor, Orationis dominicae expositio, PG 90
Origenes, De oratione, PG 11
Pietras H., Odpowiedź na słowo, Kraków 1993
Pseudo-Chrysostomus, Opus Imperfectum in Matthaeum, PG 56
Sierra Bravo R., El mensaje social de los Padres de la Iglesia, Madrid 1989
Tertullianus, De oratione, ed. G.F. Diercks, CCL 1, Turnhout 1954
Theodorus Mopsuestenus, Homiliae catecheticae, ed. A. Mingena, Commentary of Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Lord’s Prayer and on the Sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist, Woodbrooke Studies 6, Cambridge 1933
Wygralak P., Praktyki pokutne w nauczaniu św. Cezarego z Arles, PzST 8 (1998)

Published : 2014-09-04


Wygralak, P. (2014). The social message of the fourth petition in the Lord’s Prayer “give us this day our daily bread” in the commentaries of the Church Fathers. Vox Patrum, 62, 551-562. https://doi.org/10.31743/vp.3602

Paweł Wygralak 
Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu  Poland




Most read articles by the same author(s)

1 2 > >>