It seems to me that “apostolic fathers” or spiritual fathers should not be such a ‘heavy reavy” today, something hard for many ministers or sons to understand!! Many will always bring up past hurts and abuses, but it is time to move on from the past, even “forgetting the things which are behind and reaching forward to the things which are ahead…” (Phill.3:13b)
It is a new day and a new ERA (E.merging R.elational A.postles) that there are those called to ‘father’ not from and old mindset but from a renewed mind of spirit and truth. To say we do not need this is to say that we do not need a vital truth that is strongly supported by scripture. Apostle Paul penned this powerful passage in I. Co. 4:14-16 under divine inspiration:
I. Co. 4:14-16 (Nasb)- I do not write these things to shame you, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For if you were to have ‘countless tutors’ ( instructors, boy-teachers, guides, coaches, mentors) in Christ, yet you would not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel. Therefore I exhort you, be imitators of me.
I. Co. 4:14-15 (Message)- I’m not writing all this as a neighborhood scold just to make you feel rotten. I’m writing as a father to you, my children. I love you and want you to grow up well, not spoiled. There are a lot of people around who can’t wait to tell you what you’ve done wrong, but there aren’t many fathers willing to take the time and effort to help you grow up. It was as Jesus helped me proclaim God’s message to you that I became your father. I’m not, you know, asking you to do anything I’m not already doing myself.