Is it proper to call a preacher man Father?
My congregation has been calling me "Teacher" lately and it is unsettling. I do teach. But I am uncomfortable being called what they called the "Teacher". I think it would be weird to be called Father. Maybe I am just silly.
What say you?
I call priests Father. Everyone else I call Pastor or by their name.
I think that is fairly normal. But is it right?
The formal title for a priest is The Rev. Jones. Father is a informal name and is not intended to compete with our heavenly father. Every form I have filled out has always ask for Mother's Name, Father's Name. Some call the priest by his first name.
I have to take the word of my Saviour on this. the answer is NO. any man using the title father , is usurping the place of our heavenly Father.
Matt 23:9 Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. 10 And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ. 11 But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant. 12 And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.
Eric- I have to agree with celafoe on this one. It's right out of Book of Matthew as Celafoe quoted. And if Jesus said it, then that settles it.
Good questiion Eric.
Hello Eric, Great question. I believe that there is only one "Father", God, and Jesus was the greatest teacher. So, That being said, maybe pastor, preacher, Mr., minister,( as Jesus ministered to his servants) I do not think you are being silly at all. While you must have a title, to share one with the holiest of holies, would be quite a burden to carry. You are human, not an entity, and thus must be viewed as human. We are merely God's children, and should not be exhaulted to his highness. What people call you, is of no great signifigance, unless you ASK them to call you something in particular, and boast this as your title. Be a teacher to the ones needing lessons, and be a father to the ones needing guidance. What they call you, is unimportant.
That is kind of my take. I work with younger ones, from a very respectful culture. Also the use surnames and family names differently. And Dr. Dierker sounds weird. I think we will settle on Preacher. (it also has that fun ring of snake oil sales ;-)
Lol, snake oils, I like it. I remember getting injured in a sewing facory years ago, and my boss put some red "snake oil" on my injury. It healed like nobodies' business!.hmmm. wonder what that was??!! Thanks Preacher Eric!
or you could use the only real scriptural "title" -- brother
Celafoe, do not forget "friend", Rabbi and cousin.
rabbi, only used for Jesus in NT he said do not be called- MT23:8--Cousin used once to describe who he was--friend - not a title but denote a friend not enemy. None of these are titles, you and your word games
Hirelings love their titles to peacock around in front of man.
PlanksandNails I think you are right here. And if we do not do that then we are ok with any tradition of man. When I teach He teaches through, when I preach He preaches through me. If i take credit through a title i am an arse.
He teaches through you IF it aligns with God's Word. Preaching the Gospel is to get off man's platform and GO. Jesus Christ takes ALL the credit. Titles are for the religious pinners to identify the purveyor of man-man ideologies within the building.
But friend, you me and Celafoe and Graceinus preach right here. We should be honest and admit it.
whoa eric, I do not teach the perverted gospel as you do. I teach Jesus crucified for us as THE ONLY WAY into the kingdom. DO not slander me like that. You are teaching a false gospel- face it and change
Therefore, open to scrutinty to the standard to what we claim to believe. I have no need to be a titled hireling upon a hewn hierachial platform asking for the tithing plate to be passed around "my" congregation to make a living, do you?
PnN that is discustamundo. I reckon if I worked taking care of the grounds, babysitting and childcare full time, it would be nice if I could afford to live. Maybe we could make arrangements for a place to stay and food.
You did not answer the question. Are you a titled hireling who preaches for a price?
A lot of denominations will used the term Father for their pastor. My husband is a retired Lutheran pastor and there were times he was referred to as Father though it is not a common practice in our church.
I believe it comes from the fact that the pastor is the congregation's shepherd and a it is a lovely compliment.
that is aside from the fact that is is forbidden by Jesus. no matter that your church allows. Jesus says call NO man father. he is NOT their shepherd he is an UNDER shepherd. totally different
Your point is awesome in that it reminds us of a deep truth. But that guy over there standing in the field with dogs and a flock of sheep is a shepherd. Playing word rules is thus made silly. It was Christ who used words we already used.
Scripture is clear to those who understand it correctly. there is ONE shepherd but there are many overseers to shepherd the people for Him. MT 2:6, 26:31 MK 14:27, Jn 10:7, 10:11 , Acts 20:28 and more. they are not equal to Him.
Retiring from being a pastor would mean that someone decided to no longer use the gifting God has given them, unless you were a hireling who dispensed the Good News for the monetary. That would be the distinction (2 Corinthians 11:7).
planks and nails. - in our case my husband retired due to a disability that made it impossible to continue in his role as pastor. When one becomes ill, they cannot serve and be there 24/7 for their congregation. So he had to give it up.
The point I was making is that I don't see the gifting of a pastor as a role that requires a salary; it is not supported in Scripture. Many pastors are salaried to serve, which I believe is an oxymoron.
I totally agree with Celafoe. There is only one "Father." Our Heavenly Father.
There is nothing to disagree with there. My kids call me and I called my Dad, Dad. Man's custom seems to have moved away from that strictness. I do not judge that. But we should at least remember it. I do not think we should close schools though.
eric do you not remember what you say. You contradict yourself on a regular basis. . here you say you call your father dad and then later you say you called him father-- which is it? You really need to be consistant if you want us to listen to you
Excellent Celafoe. Just Excellent. Yes -- look at that! My children and I call Dads Dad and Father. That makes my point -- who cares the name, it is what is in the heart. My wife's father is tragically dead, she calls her Godfather father.
i guess everything is just one big joke to you . SORRY but Christianity is a serious matter to me and most other Christians. i really am beginning to wonder about you.
Yes Celafoe, the more laws that you proclaim man is under, the further we grow distant. As Christ was clear to me. Let me be clear to you: God loves everyone and following rules derived from anywhere does not make us more or less Christian.
I agree with all of the comments about not calling anyone Father. Most protestant clergy I know use either Pastor or Reverend. I dislike hearing Reverend because it means "entitled to reverence" and although the clergy should be respected, "revered" is a little too strong a word in my mind. Some people put down my old pastor because he told everyone to call him "Doc" which a nickname he had since childhood. Some people don't see using the pastor's name or nickname as respectful enough, but who am I to go against his wishes?
the only title is brother. pastor is not a title but a ministry that elders are to perform. Those that call themselves pastor or reverend do not understand scripture as Jesus says there is NOT to be .clergy/laity division in His church
I call shepherds shepherds and teachers teachers. Captains are captains and masters are masters. Someone who preaches is a preacher. And I do not call women brother. My children call me father and I called my father father.
you are free to do as you wish, that is the beauty of Christianity, but that does not make what you do acceptable to God or Christians that follow Jesus. so do as you wish, a minister of religion has no need to follow Christ do what feels good to you
Ouch. There is an old saying "The devil is in the details". What that means is that we should watch out for one crying out details over love"
Typical "love" mumbo jumbo from the modern "church" clergy. Tell us what type of "love" you are talking about. Is it eros, storge, philia or agape? Without details you could be talking about sensual love for all we know.
eric- sadly many people have been and are being loved straight to the LOF. God's love is saying and doing what He deems necessary whether welcome or not. Loving someone without confronting and setting them free from their sin is not love.
Mat.23:9 “And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven.”
The passage says the same about the titles Master, Teacher, Rabbi, etc. (depending on the translation). But take a look at the verses immediately preceding…
2 “The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat.
3 So you must be careful to do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach.
4 They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them.
5 “Everything they do is done for people to see: They make their phylacteries[a] wide and the tassels on their garments long..."
Basically these verses refer to the Pharisees showing off their importance. THAT’S what Jesus is admonishing them for. He has no problem with people using titles, as long as they are subordinating themselves to God under those titles and not using them to promote THEMSELVES as being somehow better than everyone else or in some way above the Law. It’s the ABUSE of the titles that He had a problem with.
And what about St. Paul?
1Corinthians 4:15 "Even if you had ten thousand guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel."
Either way, the point is, the title is not inappropriate. Do we not call our own fathers “Father”? It’s absurd to take passages out of context and use them as a pretext, as a “proof” of something. St. Peter puts it thus:
2Pet:1:20 "Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things."
When we do interpret scripture without the guidance of the Holy Spirit through the Church, any person can make the Bible mean anything, and then it can even become dangerous. We really have to look at the whole picture as given to the Church by Jesus and through the Holy Spirit, not just pull verses out willy-nilly to prove a (sometimes ridiculous) point that we might have come up with on our own.
Anyway, you see where I stand on this. I have no problem calling my pastor “Father,” because I think of him as my spiritual father, and I see nothing wrong with that. A father guides, protects and provides for his children, and that’s what my pastor does for me in a spiritual way. In fact, it’s comforting to think of him as such.
I hope through this question we are all getting the heart of the matter. If in anyone's heart they by using a title they are elevating either themselves or another that is bad. If we know the difference that God is the ultimate source. That's it.
call him what you want , he is not your "father" nor is he your spiritual head.
you clearly prefer your way to Gods way which is the norm for church people. You doing ot does not make it right nor does it please God.
Come on Celafoe ----- do you not have children? Children call their father father. It is psycho to say that is Blasphemy. Christ lived and taught in the REAL world, get a grip.
It is amazing how these religious questions get so out-of-hand. Frankly, resent people, whose credentials I do not know, from telling me what I am doing right and wrong. I called my male parent Daddy and my female parent Mother. Is that acceptable.
Larry I hope that the "out of hand" helps folks to decide for themselves. It is these funny little nuances that folks hung up I think. The big picture is pretty clear. I do appreciate your kind participation.
I do not think that it is biblical to call any man father as Matthew 23:9 says" Do not call anyone on earth your father, because you have one Father, who is in heaven". And as far as teacher is says in Matthew 23:8 that ""But as for you, do not be called 'Rabbi,' because you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers". So biblically speaking I don't think it is ok to be called father or teacher. I think it would ok to be called teacher as long as you don't call yourself teacher and that you let your congregants that the only true teacher is The Lord and you are only a pipe being used by The Lord to move the water, teaching, to come out and teach them.
I get you point PattyJane and I am coming to the point of deciding that there are many views all valid -- and you pinned down, "don't call yourself teacher". Everybody welcome Patty at http://pattyjane.hubpages.com/ she is a great writer.
I understand the point, but why shouldn't a teacher call themselves a teacher if that's what they are? If I ask someone what their profession is, how are they supposed to answer? Sometimes people can get just a little overscrupulous. No offense. JMO
I think you are right Cherihut. We all need to act normal. I called my son "the master of disaster" last night and laughed at myself for worrying about using the term master. I bet there are some cool shepherds out there.
the scripture is talking about using a function of ministry as a name/title, not about "saying i am a teacher". ie the unscriptural titles "pastor john, teacher joe. apostle sam. Paul never said apostle Paul but Paul an apostle of Jesus CHrist
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