Only ONE Father
October 9, 2017
In this month where there’s special grace to reconcile with the Father, I’d like to share with you a concept the Father has been teaching me that releases freedom!
Let’s look at a seeming contradiction in Scripture.
“Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.” Matthew 23:9
“Even though you have ten thousand guardians (instructor or teacher) in Christ, you do not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel. Therefore I urge you to imitate me.” 1 Cor. 4:15-16
Who and What Is Father?
Father here is pater from Strong’s #3962. It is used in the New Testament to refer to many types of fathers: 1. A human father 2. Both parents 3. A remote father in the family line 4. A person respectable for age or dignity 5. A spiritual father who converts another to the faith and as such is the physical instrument for their spiritual birth. 6. One who is resembled by another like children usually do their parents 7. A first author or beginner of anything 8. of God who is Father of man by creation and redemption.
Father, pater, is used in many ways in the New Testament!
Jesus referred to the scribes and Pharisees as He laid down the plumb line for His disciples and the multitudes. He said: Do not call them father, pater. And do not allow yourself to be called Rabbi (teacher) or leader.
Reaching Past the Boundary
Now, scribes and Pharisees were the religious leaders of the day. They had accomplished a mighty feat in the wake of the Babylonian exile which occurred due to idolatry. Idolatry being the thing(s) placed in seat of authority, Father’s place, ruling one’s life.
This leadership group had worked hard to restore the purity of the Jewish faith as separate from the idolatry the nation had earlier embraced.
However, they had allowed themselves to be in the seat of authority that was still Father’s alone. That moved the nation from pagan idolatry to religious idolatry. Unfortunately, it was still idolatry.
This is such a human tendency—to right a wrong, we go overboard rather than repent for the wrong and be made new.
Jesus corrected an issue that had overcorrected, and in so doing, had become corrupt.
In this context, He said: Do not allow yourself to be called Rabbi (teacher) or leader. And do not call anyone Father. Except God.
What Jesus meant was: Do not allow yourself to be put in THE seat of authority---if you are a teacher or leader. Do not allow yourself to be the idol (Matthew 23:2).
Regarding the father, pater, He meant: Do not put any man (or woman) in THE seat of authority. Do not make another person, even if they are a teacher, leader or father, an idol.
Separation Releases FREEDOM
This is a two-edged sword of separation that brings freedom.
On one side, it reveals that oh no, we have made men and women into idols (great teachers, leaders and fathers/mothers). Pagan idols are fairly easy to recognize, but religious idols are just as bad in Father’s view. There are at least two reasons why: 1. That is His position alone 2. He works with each person individually—giving that seat of authority to a person blocks the work and will of Father in our life.
On the other hand, it reveals that where we have labored to follow the teachings, leadings, directions and commands, direct or indirect, of men and women, in order to PLEASE FATHER, we are RELEASED. That heavy burden is completely lifted—and we are completely free.
Father is easier to please than people.
He is also much more gracious and merciful than people—great leaders though they may be. I have both personally experienced and heard the Father giving credit and reward for what I would completely disregard. And, I have personally experienced and heard the Father extending mercy when I would vote for justice. Like David said, let me fall into the hands of God and not man, for His mercies are very great (1 Chron. 21:13).
True Spiritual Fathers and Mothers
Did Jesus’ plumb line nullify Paul’s exhortation?
Again, the principle of Father moves beyond either/or into both/and. So, while we are commanded by Jesus to not make any religious leader an idol (nor to allow ourselves to be made one), there are many true fathers and mothers in the faith.
Paul distinguished spiritual fatherhood from teachers. A teacher can instruct people to study the Bible, to learn about Father, to pray, etc. Paul wrote that there were many instructors. In fact, they read Scripture at the synagogues every weekend and during the week, and they taught the children to read, also at the synagogue.
Purity through Alignment and Honesty
Regarding spiritual fatherhood, Paul meant that his life was a model to live from. Not many people on earth are at this level.
Alignment: We remain safe to learn from those Father directs us to, but to reserve the seat of authority for Father alone.
Also, those of you who are fathers and mothers in the faith, keep in mind that it’s easy for those you’re nurturing to place you in the idol position because it’s the human default.
Honesty: Remind them that you’re human and they have Only One Father who will never fail them and who is always available.
This is freedom for us because suddenly we find that certain things we’ve been doing or not doing, saying or not saying, are no longer necessary.
In order to please Father, we come to Him through the blood of Jesus Christ our Lord, led by the Holy Spirit who shines light for us to see/know in the FIRST PERSON: 1. In prayer 2. In Scripture 3. In our daily life 4. In dreams and visions 5. And when it’s Him speaking to us through another person.
It is so amazing and wonderful that One who’s position is THE seat of authority is the same One who so loved the world that He gave His Son’s life as the blood on THE seat of mercy. Only One Father!
Father, thank You for Your Spirit and Word which brings light, life and freedom!
I confess, repent for, reject and renounce making any man or woman, mentor or leader (or teaching, the Bible, ministry, a religious group, or affliation) an idol by placing them in Your seat of authority. Also, I confess, repent for, reject and renounce allowing myself to be made into an idol. I confess my fear and pride, personally and generationally, that kept me in this trap tied to false seats of authority and devoid of true mercy, please forgive me.
Please wash me clean to the core to the Garden with the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ and sprinkle Your blood on my conscience. I shut every door and gate, personally and generationally, that I opened to the enemy. I dedicate every door and gate, personally and generationally, to You, Father, Son and Spirit, and ask that they be saturated by the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. Lift up and open up! Come in, King of Glory, Lord strong and mighty, mighty in battle! Saturate every wound and memory with Your phos light, agape love, and zoe life to the core to the Garden. Wash me with the water of Your Word.
Separate me from everything attached that is not of You, and deal with it, Father.
Lord Jesus Christ, I give You all these places. Rebuild, renew, restore. Rule and reign here, forevermore. Holy Spirit, take out the trash, cleanse and heal me to the core. Rebuild, restore, and do much more. Father, take Your big sword and separate my soul and spirit, joint and marrow. Sever every trauma bond, wrongful and deceptive tie to land, air, water, time, place, space or dimension, celestial beings, people, places or things, demons or unclean spirits. Cleanse and heal me, and Adonai Kadesh (Lord sanctify) me to Yourself.
Father, I’m asking You to cleanse my Temple (me) of these religious (and pagan) idols, and I give the seat of authority in my heart to You. Please sprinkle the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ on the mercy seat, and take up Your position there.
Please download Your love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control, freedom and purity, love, life and light to my core. Seal it by the power of Your Holy Spirit in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, amen.
Crystal Wade writes to throw out a lifeline of hope for people to receive connectivity to trust the Father and be internally aligned to relate to Him, and thus receive His relationship and the blessings that naturally flow from Him. She is managing editor of Hope Streams.net. Crystal and Stephen received a commission from the Father to connect the generations to Him and to each other so that they can: Start well. Live well. Recover well. Build well. Finish well. As part of that commission, they release materials to assist people of all ages in connecting to The Perfect Parent. The couple carries the Father's passion to position the next generation to be grounded in His truth and love so they can fly in the Spirit. To that end, their family launched Let’s Wade In, a media portal, which is both a community for children, tweens and teens and a tool for parents, grandparents and caregivers to anchor students in truth and love so they can fly in the Spirit. They have three wonderful sons.
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