The prayer, “Kyrie, eleison,” “Lord, have mercy” derives from a Biblical phrase. The biblical roots of this prayer first appear in 1 Chronicles 16:34.
The prayer is simultaneously a petition and a prayer of thanksgiving; an acknowledgment of what God has done, what God is doing, and what God will continue to do. It is refined in the Parable of The Publican (Luke 18:9–14), “God, have mercy on me, a sinner”, which shows more clearly its connection with the Jesus Prayer. Since the early centuries of Christianity, the Greek phrase, Kýrie, eléison, is also extensively used in the Coptic (Egyptian) Christian liturgy, which uses both the Coptic and the Greek languages.