In the Holy and Divine Liturgy, we observe within many prayers the structure of supplicating and petitioning God the Father in the Name of God the Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Perhaps the most common example of this in the Anaphora of St. Basil is the Prayer of Thanksgiving in which we give thanks to God the Father “for every condition, concerning every condition, and in every condition.” At the end of this prayer, the priest adds the following words:
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, by the grace, compassion and love of mankind, of Your Only-Begotten Son, our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ, through Whom the glory, the honor, the dominion, and the adoration are due unto You, with Him, and the Holy Spirit, the Life-Giver, Who is of one essence with You, now and at all times, and unto the ages of all ages. Amen.
We find similar words at the end of most of the litanies and many other liturgical prayers.
The foundation of this structure is found in our Savior’s words of comfort to His Holy Apostles before His Passion, Crucifixion, and Resurrection:
And in that day you will ask Me nothing. Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you. Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full (Jn 16:23–24).
In the Early Church, Christians applied these words faithfully and structured their prayers accordingly. Origen of Alexandria provides us with a glimpse of how they did so:
And so, when the saints give thanks to God in their prayers, they acknowledge through Christ Jesus the favors he has done. And if it is true that one who is scrupulous about prayer ought not to pray to someone else who prays but rather to the Father whom our Lord Jesus taught us to address in prayers, it is especially true that no prayer should be addressed to the Father without him, who clearly points this out himself when he says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, if you ask anything of the Father, he will give it to you in my name. Up till now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full” (On Prayer 15.2 in Origen: An Exhortation to Martyrdom, Prayer and Selected Writings. Translated by Rowan A. Greer with preface by Hans Urs von Balthasar. Classics of Western Spirituality. New York: Paulist Press, 1979.)
When Origen says Christians “acknowledge through Christ Jesus the favors [the Father] has done,” he is essentially describing the structure of the entire Liturgy, which is a gathering of the Body of Christ to remember and make present the mighty works God has performed for us and the history of our salvation through the lifegiving work of our Lord Jesus Christ.