Doxology (δοξολογία, a praising, giving glory), an ascription of glory or praise to God.
1. Doxologies in N.T. — Short ascriptions, which may be called doxologies, abound in the Psalms (e.g. 96:6; 112:1; 113:1), and were used in the synagogue. We naturally, therefore, find the apostles using them; e.g. Ro 11:36; Eph 3:21; 1Ti 1:17. The Apocalypse (19:1) gives, as a celestial doxology, "Alleluia! Salvation, and glory, and honor, and power unto the Lord our God;" and another (5:13), "Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb, forever and ever." The song of the angels, Lu 2:14, is a doxology (see below, No. 2). The doxology at the close of the Lord's Prayer — "for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen" — is thought by most critics to be an interpolation. It is not used in the Roman liturgy in repeating the Lord's Prayer, but is used in the worship of the Greek Church, and in all Protestant churches. SEE LORDS PRAYER.
2. Liturgical Doxologies. — There are three doxologies of special note, which have been in use in Church worship from a very early period, viz.:
(1.) The Lesser Doxology, or Gloria Patti, originally in the form, "Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost;" to which was added later, "world without end;" and later still the form became what it is now: "Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen." The use of this noble doxology has been a constant testimony to the Church's faith in the Holy Trinity. In the Church of England it must be said or sung at the end of the reading of every psalm; in the Protestant Episcopal Church it may be said or sung at the end of every psalm, but either it or the greater doxology must be said or sung at the end of the whole portion of Psalms for the day. For further details, SEE GLORIA PATRI.
(2.) The Greater Doxology, or Gloria in Excelsis, called also the Angelical Hymn (q.v.), a doxology of praise and thanksgiving founded on the song of the angels, Lu 11:14 ("Glory be to God on high," etc.). For its form and history; SEE GLORIA IN EXCELSIS. It is used in the eucharistic services of the Church of England, the Methodist Episcopal and Protestant Episcopal churches, and, in fact in most Protestant churches.
(3.) The Trisagion (Latin Tersanctus), a doxology as old as the second century, beginning with the words, "Therefore, with angels and archangels, and with all the company of heaven, we laud and magnify thy glorious name." It is used in the communion service of the Church of England, the Methodist Episcopal, Protestant Episcopal, and some other Protestant churches. For its form and history, SEE TRISAGION.
3. Metrical Doxologies. — It is usual in Protestant churches, at the end of the singing of a hymn, or at least at the end of the last hymn in the service, to sing the doxology in the same meter. The hymn-books of the churches, therefore, contain a collection of versions of the Gloria Patri in various metres, adapted to all the metres of the hymns. See Bingham, Biog. Ecclesiastes book 14, chapter 2; Siegel, christl. Alterhümer, 1:515 sq.; Procter, On Common Prayer, page 212; Palmer, Orig. Liturg. 4, § 23.