Matthew 23:9

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by Haruo, Jun 14, 2003.

  1. Haruo

    Haruo
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    In a Happy Fathers Day thread in another BB forum
    To which Sue replied,
    Since I am not one of those who worries about such things — I don't care if the hymns I sing were written by the heterodox — and I clearly said I concurred with the "Happy Fathers Day" sentiments preceding my post, I don't feel a need to suggest an alternate term for Sue's father, though personally I called mine "Daddy" when he was on this earth and usually refer to him as "my dad" or "my father" now that he's gone home.

    But I do rather doubt Sue's exegesis here. It seems to me that Jesus clearly says not to call anyone on earth "father"; not just not priests, but not anybody. I think this and similar verses need to be read in the light of others like Luke 14:26 "If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple."

    I'd be interested to know how not only Baptists but also those for whom "Father" is a customary ecclesiastical title exegete this verse, and whether anyone has any additional support to bring to Sue's position.

    Haruo
     
  2. DanielFive

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    I think Sue has got it right here. Matthew 23:9 is talking of a spiritual father.

    Here's what Matthew Henry says:

    "Call no man your father upon the earth; constitute no man the father of your religion, that is, the founder, author, director, and governor, of it.’

    ’ The fathers of our flesh must be called fathers, and as such we must give them reverence; but God only must be allowed as the Father of our spirits, Heb. 12:9. Our religion must not be derived from, or made to depend upon, any man. We are born again to the spiritual and divine life, not of corruptible seed, but by the word of God; not of the will of the flesh, or the will of man, but of God.

    Now the will of man, not being the rise of our religion, must not be the rule of it. We must not jurare in verba magistri—swear to the dictates of any creature, not the wisest or best, nor pin our faith on any man’s sleeve, because we know not whither he will carry it.

    St. Paul calls himself a Father to those whose conversion he had been an instrument of (1 Co. 4:15; Phil. 10); but he pretends to no dominion over them, and uses that title to denote, not authority, but affection: therefore he calls them not his obliged, but his beloved, sons, 1 Co. 4:14. The reason given is, One is your Father, who is in heaven. God is our Father, and is All in all in our religion. He is the Fountain of it, and its Founder; the Life of it, and its Lord; from whom alone, as the Original, our spiritual life is derived, and on whom it depends. He is the Father of all lights (Jam. 1:17), that one Father, from whom are all things, and we in him, Eph. 4:6.

    Christ having taught us to say, Our Father, who art in heaven; let us call no man Father upon earth; no man, because man is a worm, and the son of man is a worm, hewn out of the same rock with us; especially not upon earth, for man upon earth is a sinful worm; there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not, and therefore no one is fit to be called Father.


    This verse always worried me when I was a catholic, I'd be interested to see how the catholics on the board deal with the verse, particularly as they call the Pope 'The Most Holy Father' no less. I wonder if that includes our Father in heaven? :confused:

    God Bless

    Enda
     
  3. Kathryn

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    Full article at:
    http://www.catholic-forum.com/luxveritatis/father.htm
     
  4. Kathryn

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    There are other Holy Fathers beside the present Pope:

    Abraham:
    “For this reason it is by faith, in order that it may be in accordance with grace, so that the promise will be guaranteed to all the descendants, not only to those who are of the Law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all,” Romans 4:16

    Paul :
    “ I do not write these things to shame you, but to admonish you as my beloved children.” 1 Corinthians 4:14

    “My children, with whom I am again in labor until Christ is formed in you—“ Galatians 4:19

    John:
    “My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous;” 1 John 2:1

    “I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth.” 3 John 1:4

    Holy Scripture teaches our spiritual leaders are our spiritual fathers. We, as Christians, are also all called to be Holy: “but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; because it is written, "YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY." 1 Peter 1:15-16

    To be holy is what we are called to be. When we sin, we repent and are forgiven. This is true also for the Pope. Catholics believe in ongoing conversion as the Bible teaches. We are not called to be sinners. We are called to be holy as our heavenly Father is holy.

    The Pope is called the Holy Father as a title of respect. St. Paul tells us in Holy Scripture: “They also honored us with many marks of respect;” Acts 28:10

    Holy Scripture supports us calling some people our spiritual fathers, and also supports the call for us to be holy. As I have shown, Abraham is our spiritual and holy father, as is Paul, and John, and all the foundation stones of the church with Jesus Christ as the cornerstone.

    This is how Catholics treat our clergy and the Holy Father. It involves respect for our leaders as members of the Body of Christ just as Holy Scripture teaches. St. Paul even says: “Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you; and considering the result of their conduct, imitate their faith.” Hebrews 13:7

    God Bless

    P.S.
    Happy Father's Day everyone!
     
  5. DanielFive

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    Kathryn,

    When catholics call the Pope the 'Most Holy Father' what exactly do they mean. More Holy than who? Abraham? Paul? John? ....

    God Bless

    Enda
     
  6. Ray Berrian

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    When I was first ordained into the ministry I liked it when people would call me Reverend. After reading in the O.T. that the Bible says, 'Reverend is His Name,' I changed my mind. It was to me irreverent to identify myself as being revered because only Christ the Lord is worthy of this title.

    Since Jesus has said that we should call no man our father, I think it is best not to defy His statement. [Matthew 23:9] No clergy in any denomination should hold this title dear to his heart. Yes, we do respect godliness and education but our great, Father Teacher is Jesus Christ our Lord, [John 14:6 & John 14:26] and the Holy Spirit.

    I personally think pastor is a fine title to use for all men of God.
     
  7. Kathryn

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    Most:
    Etymology: Middle English, from Old English manig; akin to Old High German manag many, Old Church Slavonic munogu much
    Date: before 12th century
    1 : consisting of or amounting to a large but indefinite number <worked for many years>
    2 : being one of a large but indefinite number <many a man> <many another student>
     
  8. Kathryn

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    Here is an example of a Catholic prayer using the title most holy Heart of Jesus :

    O most holy Heart of Jesus, fountain of every blessing, I adore Thee, I love Thee and with a lively sorrow for my sins, I offer Thee this poor heart of mine. Make me humble, patient, pure and wholly obedient to Thy will. Grant, good Jesus, that I may live in Thee and for Thee. Protect me in the midst of danger; comfort me in my afflictions; give me health of body, assistance in my temporal needs, Thy blessing on all that I do, and the grace of a holy death. Within Thy Heart I place my every care. In every need let me come to Thee with humble trust saying, Heart of Jesus help me.
     
  9. DanielFive

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    Kathryn,

    Here are two verses of Scripture that you might like to address.

    John 17:25 O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee...

    NOTE Jesus didn't feel the need to address God the Father 'O MOST righteous Father', WHY?

    Romans 3:10 As it is written 'There is NONE righteous, no, NOT ONE'.

    God Bless

    Enda

    PS Could you advise me of any Scripture that refers to any man as holy father?
     
  10. Kathryn

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    Enda:
    Jesus Christ is God. He knows exactly how righteous the Father is. He is perfectly righteous. He is perfect in everything including love. "Most" as far as the Webster's definition I posted states that it means an indefinite amount. Only God knows how holy anyone is.

    Most:
    Etymology: Middle English, from Old English manig; akin to Old High German manag many, Old Church Slavonic munogu much
    Date: before 12th century
    1 : consisting of or amounting to a large but indefinite number
    2 : being one of a large but indefinite number

    St. Peter, St. Paul, and all the other saints in the New Testament. When they used the term saint they were calling each other holy ones. It means holy one or sacred one. That is what Scripture teaches we are to be if we are a true Christian.

    Holy Scripture teaches our spiritual leaders are our spiritual fathers. We, as Christians, are also all called to be Holy: “but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; because it is written, "YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY." 1 Peter 1:15-16

    We are all to be saints. The kingdom of God is within us.

    God Bless
     
  11. Singer

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    We are all to be saints. The kingdom of God is within us.

    Carson says the Catholic Church IS the Kingdom of God.

    What happened to unity within the RCC..?

    Or is it meant that the Catholic Church can be within us or
    are we to have the spirit of the Catholic Church within us ?
    :confused:
     
  12. thessalonian

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    Edna,

    You missuse the verse tthat says there is none righteous. Clearly this is a quote from I believe it is Isaiha speaking about those not in God for there are men who are called righteous.

    Genesis 6:9
    This is the account of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God.
    (Whole Chapter: Genesis 6 In context: Genesis 6:8-10)

    zekiel 18:26
    If a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits sin, he will die for it; because
    of the sin he has committed he will die.


    Acts 10:22
    The men replied, "We have come from Cornelius the centurion. He is a righteous and God­fearing man, who is respected by all the Jewish people. A holy angel told him to have you come to his house so that he could hear what you have to say."
    (Whole Chapter: Acts 10 In context: Acts 10:21-23)

    Matthew 1:19
    Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

    Just to mention a few.

    As for calling someone holy father. The word holy means dedicated to God. There are many things that are called holy in the old testament. Holy water holy man, holy people, holy women, holy garments .... I think I had a list of about thirty items/or people from the old and new testaments. So I just don't see the big deal. Jesus is called the Holy One yet this term is not reserved for God. Aaron among others is called the Holy One.

    As for calling no man father, it can't be a prohibition in the spiritual sense as Paul says that Abraham in faith is the father of us all.

    Romans 4:16
    Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham's offspring–not only to those who are of the law but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all.

    Jew and Gentile is the apparent context. It is not just birthline but all who have faith in Christ.

    Paul even refers to himself in the spiritual sense.

    rinthians 4:15
    Even though you have ten thousand guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel.

    Is this blaspehmy? I don't think so. I think if you look in to the meaning for the word hyperbole, you will find your answer. God is the father above all fathers. He is the end father. Any man who claims to be our father as the source of all our benefits is in violation of the verse.

    I am the father of my children, recognizing that God is the ultimate source of all the blessings my children recieves, even if the come through me. The same is true in a spiritual sense. Paul recognizes himself as the corinthians father in a spiritual sense because he provides for their spritual lives. This does not usurp the Fatherhood of God the Father, as Paul is completely subserviant to that fatherhood.

    Hope this helps.
     
  13. Lorelei

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    Peter and Paul also used the word holy, but when they referred to each other, they used the word saint. Why change what Peter and Paul left us for an example?

    If this is the closest scripture you could get to answer the question then you should have just answered honestly and said No.

    The question was:

    The scripture you gave refers to ALL of us. We are all called to be holy so according to you we should ALL be called holy. Does the pope call you "Most Holy Child Kathryn?" Would there be any objections to you carrying this title?

    This verse calls us to be holy, it does not tell people to call us holy, there is a big difference in the two.

    ~Lorelei
     
  14. Lorelei

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    For clarification, when Peter and Paul used the word saints in reference to each other they used it in the general sense, they never imposed that title upon any one person, not even themselves.

    In fact it is always used in the plural form or context, never when speaking about an individual.

    ~Lorelei
     
  15. Kathryn

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    "Salute every saint in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:21 Each one individually were considered saints by the Christians in the New Testament. Not some group pluralism that didn’t really mean anything.

    As far as our spiritual leaders:
    Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you; and considering the result of their conduct, imitate their faith. Hebrews 13:7

    As far as special marks of respect for our clergy:
    St. Paul also tells us in Holy Scripture:
    “They also honored us with many marks of respect;” Acts 28:10

    Holy Scripture supports us calling some people our spiritual fathers, and also supports the call for us to be holy. As I have shown, Abraham is our spiritual and holy father, as is Paul, and John, and all the foundation stones of the church with Jesus Christ as the cornerstone.

    How do you guys honor your pastors with marks of respect? Considering the result of their conduct, do you imitate their faith? How do you respect one another as saints?

    “but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior” Do you really believe this is true? God’s Grace is what makes it possible and true.

    God Bless
     
  16. Kathryn

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    No objection. I am a most holy child Kathryn in the kingdom of God as long as I am in the state of Sanctifying grace. I never met the Holy Father so I don’t know if he would say to me, “my most holy child”. He might, if he was recognizing Christ in me.

    I e-mailed my Bishop once and he signed his letter to me : "Your servant, in Christ Jesus". He didn't know me from Adam, and he didn't have to spend the time to respond to my need. Respect for one another is all about Jesus Christ and honoring the Body of Christ.

    “And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.” 1 Corinthians 12:26

    As Jesus told the disciples: "Whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all" (Mk.10:43)

    The first words of John Paul II when he was elected Pope: "I am the servant of the servants".

    God Bless

    [ June 15, 2003, 02:45 AM: Message edited by: Kathryn ]
     
  17. DHK

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    My daughter trusted Christ as her Saviour. She is, therefore, a saint. Saint simply means "holy one," "sanctified," "set apart."
    The way I respect my saint daughter is to spank her when she is bad, and praise her when she is good.
    DHK
     
  18. Kathryn

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    DHK:
    You present the same definition of saint that I did earlier. I am glad you are a good father. I assume you spanked her when she was bad, and praised her when she was good before she trusted Christ as her Savior. So you treat her the same.

    The questions I asked were : How do you honor your pastors with marks of respect? Considering the result of their conduct, do you imitate their faith? How do you respect one another as saints? Your answer seems to be you don’t show any different signs of respect to Christians or clergy.

    God Bless

    [ June 15, 2003, 03:35 AM: Message edited by: Kathryn ]
     
  19. DHK

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    That was the point entirely. I didn't treat her any differently after she became a saint, than before she became a saint. Her sainthood changed nothing in our house. That saint still sinned and still does. And she still gets spanked for her "saintly" and not so "saintly" sins. She is a sinner saved by the grace of God, and thus one of the saints of God. There is no such thing as a "canonized saint." They, if they were saved in the first place, were no more saintly than me or my daughter.

    How do we give respect to our pastors? Just like we give respect to any other person. We teach our children to respect their elders, and those in authority. If you mean "How do we address him?" We usually call our pastor, "Pastor_______" You can put in the name for yourself. In most churches they use the last name, but not always.

    We don't set him up on pedestal like a god. That apparently is what Catholics do in violation of Scripture.
    Every believer is to be treated as a saint. That is our position in Christ, not our degree of spirituality.
    DHK
     
  20. Kathryn

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    DHK:
    No one is talking about a degree of spirituality. As Jesus told the disciples: "Whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all" (Mk.10:43) It is about honoring Christ within.

    Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you; and considering the result of their conduct, imitate their faith. Hebrews 13:7

    “They also honored us with many marks of respect;” Acts 28:10

    “And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.” 1 Corinthians 12:26

    Salute every saint in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:21

    Honoring the Body of Christ and individual members of the Body is scriptural. Marks of respect for our clergy is a scriptural.

    God Bless

    [ June 15, 2003, 05:06 AM: Message edited by: Kathryn ]
     

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