Matthew 23:9
Parallel Verses
New International Version
And do not call anyone on earth 'father,' for you have one Father, and he is in heaven.

New Living Translation
And don't address anyone here on earth as 'Father,' for only God in heaven is your spiritual Father.

English Standard Version
And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven.

New American Standard Bible
"Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.

King James Bible
And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Do not call anyone on earth your father, because you have one Father, who is in heaven.

International Standard Version
And don't call anyone on earth 'Father,' because you have only one Father, the one in heaven.

NET Bible
And call no one your 'father' on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And you should not call yourselves “Father”, in the earth, for one is your Father who is in Heaven.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
And don't call anyone on earth your father, because you have only one Father, and he is in heaven.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And call no one your father upon the earth, for one is your Father, who is in the heavens.

King James 2000 Bible
And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, who is in heaven.

American King James Version
And call no man your father on the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

American Standard Version
And call no man your father on the earth: for one is your Father, even he who is in heaven.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And call none your father upon earth; for one is your father, who is in heaven.

Darby Bible Translation
And call not [any one] your father upon the earth; for one is your Father, he who is in the heavens.

English Revised Version
And call no man your father on the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

Webster's Bible Translation
And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father who is in heaven.

Weymouth New Testament
And call no one on earth your Father, for One alone is your Father--the Heavenly Father.

World English Bible
Call no man on the earth your father, for one is your Father, he who is in heaven.

Young's Literal Translation
and ye may not call any your father on the earth, for one is your Father, who is in the heavens,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

23:1-12 The scribes and Pharisees explained the law of Moses, and enforced obedience to it. They are charged with hypocrisy in religion. We can only judge according to outward appearance; but God searches the heart. They made phylacteries. These were scrolls of paper or parchment, wherein were written four paragraphs of the law, to be worn on their foreheads and left arms, Ex 13:2-10; 13:11-16; De 6:4-9; 11:13-21. They made these phylacteries broad, that they might be thought more zealous for the law than others. God appointed the Jews to make fringes upon their garments, Nu 15:38, to remind them of their being a peculiar people; but the Pharisees made them larger than common, as if they were thereby more religious than others. Pride was the darling, reigning sin of the Pharisees, the sin that most easily beset them, and which our Lord Jesus takes all occasions to speak against. For him that is taught in the word to give respect to him that teaches, is commendable; but for him that teaches, to demand it, to be puffed up with it, is sinful. How much is all this against the spirit of Christianity! The consistent disciple of Christ is pained by being put into chief places. But who that looks around on the visible church, would think this was the spirit required? It is plain that some measure of this antichristian spirit prevails in every religious society, and in every one of our hearts.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 9. - Your father. This was the title given to eminent teachers and founders of schools, to whom the people were taught to look up rather than to God. It was also addressed to prophets (2 Kings 2:12; 2 Kings 6:21). In ver. 8 Christ said, "be not called;" here he uses the active, "call not," as if he would intimate that his followers must not give this honoured title to any doctor out of complaisance, or flattery, or affectation. Upon the earth. In contradistinction to heaven, where our true Father dwells. They were to follow no earthly school. They had natural lathers and spiritual fathers, but the authority of all comes from God; it is delegated, not essential; and good teachers would make men look to God, and not to themselves, as the source of power and truth.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And call no man your father upon the earth,.... Not but that children may, and should call their natural parents, fathers; and such who have been instrumental in the conversion of souls, may be rightly called by them their spiritual fathers; as servants and scholars also, may call those that are over them, and instruct them, their masters: our Lord does not mean, by any of these expressions, to set aside all names and titles, of natural and civil distinction among men, but only to reject all such names and titles, as are used to signify an authoritative power over men's consciences, in matters of faith and obedience; in which, God and Christ are only to be attended to. Christ's sense is, that he would have his disciples not fond of any titles of honour at all; and much less assume an authority over men, as if they were to depend on them, as the founders of the Christian religion, the authors of its doctrines and ordinances; and to take that honour to themselves, which did not belong to them; nor even choose to be called by such names, as would lead people to entertain too high an opinion of them, and take off of their dependence on God the Father, and himself, as these titles the Scribes and Pharisees loved to be called by, did: and who were called not only by the name of Rabbi, but Abba, "Father", also: hence we read of Abba Saul, or "Father" Saul (n); Abba Jose ben Jochanan, a man of Jerusalem (o), Abba Chanan (p), Abba Chelphetha, a man of the village of Hananiah (q); Abba Gorion (r), and others; and this name was , "a name of honour, even as Rabbi" (s), and of great authority: the wise men are said to be , "the fathers of all" (t), to whom all gave heed, and upon whom all depended, as so many oracles. There is a whole treatise in their Misna, called Pirke Abot, which contains some of the oracles, and peculiar sayings of these "fathers", the Misnic doctors, and which are preferred to the writings of Moses, and the prophets. In this sense, and upon this score, our Lord inveighs against them, and cautions his disciples against giving or taking all such titles, in such sense. "For one is your Father, which is in heaven"; who is so, both by creation and adoption, and is possessed of all paternal authority; and is to be honoured and obeyed by all; from whom all wisdom and knowledge is derived, and who has the care and government of all in heaven and in earth.

(n) Pirke Abot, c. 2. sect. 8. (o) T. Bab. Yebamot, fol. 53. 2.((p) Ib. fol. 64. 1.((q) T. Bab. Bava Metzia, fol. 94. 1. & Bava Bathra. fol. 56. 2.((r) Massech Sopherim, c. 15. sect. 10. (s) Juchasiu, fol. 31. 2. & 61. 2.((t) Maimon. in Misn. Peah, c. 1. sect. 1.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

9. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven, &c.—To construe these injunctions into a condemnation of every title by which Church rulers may be distinguished from the flock which they rule, is virtually to condemn that rule itself; and accordingly the same persons do both—but against the whole strain of the New Testament and sound Christian judgment. But when we have guarded ourselves against these extremes, let us see to it that we retain the full spirit of this warning against that itch for ecclesiastical superiority which has been the bane and the scandal of Christ's ministers in every age. (On the use of the word "Christ" here, see on [1346]Mt 1:1).

Matthew 23:9 Additional Commentaries
Context
Woes to Scribes and Pharisees
8"But do not be called Rabbi; for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers. 9"Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. 10"Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ.…
Cross References
Matthew 6:9
"This, then, is how you should pray: "'Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,

Matthew 7:11
If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

Matthew 23:10
Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one Instructor, the Messiah.
Treasury of Scripture

And call no man your father on the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

call.

2 Kings 2:12 And Elisha saw it, and he cried, My father, my father, the chariot …

2 Kings 6:21 And the king of Israel said to Elisha, when he saw them, My father, …

2 Kings 13:14 Now Elisha was fallen sick of his sickness whereof he died. And Joash …

Job 32:21,22 Let me not, I pray you, accept any man's person, neither let me give …

Acts 22:1 Men, brothers, and fathers, hear you my defense which I make now to you.

1 Corinthians 4:15 For though you have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet have …

1 Timothy 5:1,2 Rebuke not an elder, but entreat him as a father; and the younger …

Hebrews 12:9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, …

for.

Matthew 6:8,9,32 Be not you therefore like to them: for your Father knows what things …

Malachi 1:6 A son honors his father, and a servant his master: if then I be a …

Romans 8:14-17 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God…

2 Corinthians 6:18 And will be a Father to you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, …

1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we …

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