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It's a rare church that will follow God in preference to its human leaders.

A Catholic once insisted to me that obedience to Jesus was more important to him than was obedience to his church.

"If I showed you, right now, that Jesus taught one thing, and the church taught the opposite, would you defend Jesus or defend the church?" I asked.

"I'd defend Jesus!" he boasted.

"Suppose Jesus said, 'Don't call anyone father,' and the church said the opposite."

"That's different," he replied, and, for the next five minutes he tried to defend the church.

"Call no man father" is one of the easiest Christian rules to obey. Unlike "Love one another" it is objective. Unlike "Go into all the world and preach the gospel" it only requires you to refrain from doing something. Unlike "Take no thought for food or clothing," it's not a difficult thing to refrain from doing.

Yet, throughout the so-called Christian world, it is one of the most openly and universally disobeyed commands of Jesus.

Protestant Popes BJesus said the church leaders of his day loved people to show respect for them by using titles. (Matthew 23:8-10) He specifically says not to use the titles Rabbi (teacher or doctor), father, or master (or mister).

Protestants know the passage well enough to condemn Catholics. But they have no conscience about terms like Doctor (Dr. Billy Graham), Mister (which the dictionary says is the same as Master), and Sir, which comes from Sire and means Father. The verb "sire" means "become father to". The dictionary says Sir is especially used as a title of respect for a teacher.

It is as though Satan is parading his power by showing he can make the church totally disobey anything that Jesus teaches. And when an error is pointed out, they hide behind shallow justifications from their pastors rather than change.

If we cannot be faithful in such a simple rule, how can we be faithful with anything Jesus taught?

Jesus never taught anything that was insignificant. Forbidding the use of titles discourages leaders from robbing God of the glory due to God alone for what He accomplishes though us.

So who are you following?

(See also In the Name of the Father.)

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