For the name "Father" is something you do not
wish to even consider, let alone assign to a God
that is love.

How do you advise someone that the God they
love, is their "father"?


Calling God "Our
Father"?


Dear S.

I wish to comment first on 'mercy', and then on
the subject of 'Father'.

Mercy.

May I offer that you are free to address our
Father however you need?  Communicating with
Him is by far more important than the title you
use.  The weight given to communication is, in
my opinion, much greater than the weight given
to the use of the proper title.

This is in keeping with Jesus being the 'Lord of
the Sabbath'.  This bit of history is so important,
that Matthew, Mark, and Luke record what they
saw Jesus do and say in a field of grain.  
[Matthew 12; Mark 2; Luke 6].  I think that
Jesus showed that His mercy, as the Owner of
the Sabbath, dominates the letter of His Law
given to Moses.  

To me, it is His Law given to Moses.  It is not
Jesus versus Moses.  It is Jesus, rather,
establishing precedents concerning His Law
given to Moses years before.

The concept of an order of precedence is again
shown In Matthew 23:23, wherein Jesus states
the precedence of His Law as "justice, mercy,
and faithfulness" being given a heavier weight
than the "tithe".  

There are more important Laws; there are
lesser Laws.  On 2 commandments hang all the
Law and Prophets.  They are all His laws, which
He gave to Moses.  He owns all those Laws, and
has set a precedent of order.  He is Lord of the
Sabbath.  And His mercy is dominant and has the
highest precedent.

His mercy is dominant to such an extreme that
He said, "And so I tell you, every sin and
blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the
blasphemy against the Spirit will not be
forgiven."  

Look at that first phrase:  Every sin and
blasphemy will be forgiven mankind.  Incredible!  
Mercy that is so excessively dominant that every
form of sin will be forgiven all mankind!  

    [Only one sin trumps His mercy of
    forgiveness, and that is 'blasphemy against
    the Spirit'.  'Blasphemy against the Spirit'
    most likely means 'making yourself equal to
    or greater than' the Holy Spirit by ignoring
    the convicting the Spirit brings to the world
    concerning their 'sin' and need to 'believe in
    Christ' [John 16:7-11].   Thus, 'blasphemy
    against the Spirit' is the rejection of Christ
    as your personal savior prior to your death.]

Jesus' mercy is so great that it is like saying,
"Every land mass on earth will sink under the
oceans, except for one island."  

Thus, I wish to offer that it is far more important
to communicate with God by any title, rather
than to allow yourself to withdraw from Him.  
Even if the title you select is total sin or
blasphemy, it will be heard as if covered by the
mercy of Christ and buried under an ocean of
forgiveness.

To me, this concept of an order of precedence is
very important, for those that have had very
skewed relationships with their earthly paternal
father, their adopted father, their step-father
(s), or their absent father, may have horrible
connotations that surround the word "Father",
and therefore need to call God something else...
perhaps anything else, but "Father".

Jesus said, "Come to me, all you who are weary
and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my
yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am
gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest
for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my
burden is light."  [Matthew 11:28-30]

He will hear their prayers, petitions, cries and
moans... even if they call Him, "Lord God of
Heaven and Earth", "the only wise God", "He
that sits upon the throne", or even "Hey, can we
talk a bit, if you don't really mind?"  For He will
give them rest.

But Jesus also said, "... learn from me."  So
then, please allow me to chat about about the
title "Father".  


Father.

If you have access to a search engine for the
Bible, try this experiment:
    Set the engine to search only the Gospels;
    Search only for the word "Lord"
    Note who uses that word and the context.

Then,
    Set the engine to again search only the
    Gospels;
    Search only for the word "Father"
    Note again who uses the word and the
    context.

There is a beautiful shift from (a) the addressing
of God as "Lord" which was very proper in the
Old Covenant to (b) the addressing of God as
"Father" which Jesus used.  

Please understand that, to the Jews of Jesus'
time, to call God "Father" or to say that you
were a "son of God" was blasphemy and a very
severe sin deserving of death.  [John 10:25-39]

Thus, it appears that the disciples of Jesus did
not pray to God as "Father" during the earthly
ministry of Jesus.  Jesus even instructed them to
pray to "Our Father which is in heaven...", but
there is no record of any apostle praying "Our
Father" within the Gospels that I can find.

Perhaps the very followers that heard Jesus'
instructions to call God "Our Father" stumbled at
the semantic of blasphemy; perhaps they were
not truly adopted sons of God until Jesus
breathed on them and said 'Receive the Holy
Spirit' [John 20:22]; perhaps the disciples had
insufficient insight until the Holy Spirit arrived on
the Day of Pentecost; perhaps a dozen
reasons.....

But then, years later, one extreme wrote to the
other extreme:

    1.  The Jew of Jews, the Pharisee of the
    Pharisees, a man renamed Paul who
    claimed to be an Apostle,

    writes to

    2.  The Roman believers who represented
    the conquering nation that had subjugated
    the Jewish nation; who also represented
    the Gentiles that changed the image of God
    into the image of beasts, image of man, and
    indulgers of immoral sexuality [Romans 1].

What did this one extreme say to the other
extreme?  Paul says this,

    "For you did not receive a spirit that makes
    you a slave again to fear, but you received
    the Spirit of son-ship.  And by him we cry,
    "Abba, Father." The Spirit himself testifies
    with our spirit that we are God's children.
    Now if we are children, then we are heirs—
    heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if
    indeed we share in his sufferings in order
    that we may also share in his glory."
    [Romans 8:15-17]

This is incredible news!  

For a Jew to say "Abba, Father" to God meant
that the Jew had worked through the realization
that there was no blasphemy being committed!  
The fear of being thrown off a cliff and stoned
to death was gone from the Jew's mind!  The
Jew had mentally abandoned a lifetime of
training, and embraced the concept of adoption
into full son-ship.  What an incredible shift of
paradigms!

But as if this news is not enough, the Jew called
Paul is telling the other extreme that they too,
even the Roman believers, are also the sons of
God.  It was not just a shift of paradigms within
the Jewish believer, but a shift that extended to
anyone that believed!  

It is as if thousands of years of prior
relationships -- chosen Able; chosen Noah;
chosen Abraham; chosen Moses; chosen Aaron
-- were but tutors.  And suddenly, in the space
of a few years, the most amazing lesson was
taught (not by a tutor, but by Christ and the
Holy Spirit):  you are now chosen as "sons" and
God is your Father.  

The man named 'Able' was a believer that gave
a worthy sacrifice, but he was not a 'son'.  Noah
was a believer that trusted God to bring an
element never before seen by mankind called
'rain', but he was not a 'son'.  Abraham was a
believer that left all family and lived in land that
was promised his descendants, but he was not a
'son'.  Moses was empowered by God to do
miracles before the king of all Egypt, but he was
not a 'son'.  Aaron was selected by God to enter
into the Holy of Holiest once per year, but even
he was not a 'son'.  

Something 'better' was given to us.

We are sons of God; and He is our Father.


Summary.

I offer that speaking to God is far more
important than the title by which we address
Him.  His mercy covers.  Like the earthly father
of a small child, the babbling and cries and
questions are so important to the father's ears,
that He smiles when the child hugs his leg and
says a single word.  He loves you.

But the term "Father" is rich in meaning:

    - You are adopted forever by the highest
    court in the universe and nothing shall
    separate you from the love of God;

    - You can speak to Him face to face on any
    issue or concern at any time (for the High
    Priest can enter only once per year into the
    presence of God, but the son can enter His
    presence at all times);

    - You have rights to plead with Him that He
    should withhold His judgment from
    someone that offended you (for the desire
    of the Father to defend the child is
    enormous);

    - You have rights to return to Him following
    any 'prodigal' behavior and will hear Him
    rejoice over you as a 'son';

    - You can turn your cheek to accept another
    insult, and bless those that curse you, for
    you are one of the heirs of all spiritual
    blessings and therefore unbelievably rich in
    blessings;

    - You can carry another's burden an illegal
    extra mile, and speak to them of Christ, for
    you are one of the heirs of eternity and
    therefore unbelievably rich in time;

    - You can resign your case in court and give
    twice as much, for you are one of the heirs
    of all eternal treasures and a receiver of the
    new earth, and therefore unbelievably rich
    in treasures, wealth, mansions, and land.

I offer that we often need to shift our
paradigms, as did Paul the apostle.

    We are sons of God.

    He is our Father in Heaven.

He that is 'meek and humble' is willing to teach
us that carry his 'yoke', so that we will 'find rest
for our souls.'

May our Father open our eyes to see the
richness of our relationship to Him - for He is
"Our Father in Heaven" and we are his "sons".

Much love in Christ always and unconditionally;

Caryn



*******




(c) Copyright Caryn LeMur 2007
The Collection of Short Works,
Letters, and Poems
Calling God "Our Father"?
Many of the  born-males that later
live as women had an unusual
childhood.

In some cases, they were quite a
disappointment to their own
fathers.

Some researchers believe this is
because the "male" child is simply
too "soft" and "not boy enough"
for the father.

Few researchers believe that the
father caused the softness.  
Rather, the relationship can
become a very downward spiral of
a father with shattered
expectations, and a "son" that is
far more female than allowed by
family or society.

For some that are male-to-female
(MTF), the relationship spiraled
down so deeply, that even the
name "Father" brings up a
thousand wounded feelings.

What do you do then, years later,
when you become a Christian, and
you hear a man next to you pray,
"Our Father, which art in
heaven...."?
In Deepest Sympathy -
Poetry for those that grieve
Building Faith, Hope, & Love -
Stories and Writings
A Cup Of Cold Water -
Letters For The Thirsty
A Pause In The Forest -
Poetry for thoughtful moments