One of the most beautiful truths about the coming of Christ(New Covenant) is that He made each believer equal in His eyes(Galatians 3:28-29), in spite of their roles in God’s kingdom/family. We are a family under Him. We address each other as brothers. He only is our Father!
[NLT] Matthew 23:8 “Don’t let anyone call you ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one teacher, and all of you are equal as brothers and sisters.
[NLT] Matthew 23:9 And don’t address anyone here on earth as ‘Father,’ for only God in heaven is your spiritual Father.
[NLT] Matthew 23:10 And don’t let anyone call you ‘Teacher,’ for you have only one teacher, the Messiah.
[NLT] Matthew 23:11 The greatest among you must be a servant.
[NLT] Matthew 23:12 But those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.
We should not be so engrossed with titles as many are in christiandom in this day. We forget the roles(offices); Apostle, Pastor, teacher, Evangelist, prophet, though important and have their place in God’s family(Ephesians 4:11-14) don’t really define who we are. We are ultimately all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus(John 1:12). Only in Christ do we live, move and have our being(Acts 17:28).
We have gone further in our day and taken up titles that only belong to God and given them to men, sadly. For example Reverend(Psalm 111:9KJV). In other cases we add Most Reverend to refer to mere flesh and blood. We also have other names like Holy father(John 17:11) that we give to a man. Etc. It clearly shows we are more focussed on ourselves and our position, like the Pharisees and teachers of the law that Christ was rebuking in Matthew 23. We have forgotten than our greatest role is being servants. Some even get offended if you don’t address them with their man- given titles. Jesus Christ clearly affirmed the highest title is servant in the passage above. Christ is categorical in the last day each of us will either be commended or condemned for being a faithful servant(Matthew 25:21) or a slothful/unfaithful servant(Matthew 25:26-27).
Interestingly The early church/ Apostles referred to each other as brothers or by their names rather than their titles(office)(Galatians 2, 2 Peter 3:15 )and many other places. They were not obsessed with their titles and God used them all the same. Finally, Paul nails it!
[NLT] 1 Corinthians 3:5 After all, who is Apollos? Who is Paul? We are only God’s servants through whom you believed the Good News. Each of us did the work the Lord gave us.
[NLT] 1 Corinthians 3:6 I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow.
[NLT] 1 Corinthians 3:7 It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow.
[NLT] 1 Corinthians 4:1 So look at Apollos and me as mere servants of Christ who have been put in charge of explaining God’s mysteries.
[ESV] 1 Corinthians 4:2 Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.