God Abba And Catholic Fatherhood In Bible

In order to understand how a father should be, we need to first go to the Bible to understand where the concept of ‘father’ comes from.  In the Old Testament we can understand God as being Father in the sense that He created us and everything that we need.  We come from Him and owe Him our obedience.

Creation of EveIn the second chapter of the Bible we see the word for a human father;

Wherefore a man shall leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they shall be two in one flesh. Genesis 2:24

In Exodus, (and echoed in Matthew), we hear about how to treat our human fathers.

Honour thy father and thy mother, that thou mayest be longlived upon the land which the Lord thy God will give thee. Exodus 20:12

And he shall not honour his father or his mother: and you have made void the commandment of God for your tradition.  Matthew 15:6

Honour thy father and thy mother:  Matthew 19:19

But it is not until the New Testament of the Bible, that we hear Jesus call God, Father or Abba.  It is contained in the well know prayer Jesus taught us; ‘The Our Father’.

Holy Trinity_PEREDA, Antonio de 2‘Be not you therefore like to them, for your Father knoweth what is needful for you, before you ask him.  Thus therefore shall you pray:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name.  Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Matthew 6:8.

Jesus is continuously praying to and teaching us about His Father and our Father, God.

If you then being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children: how much more will your Fatherwho is in heaven, give good things to them that ask him? Matthew 7:11

And call none your father upon earth; for one is your father, who is in heaven.  Neither be ye called masters; for one is your master, Christ. Matthew 23:9

 (Comment from Douay Rheims Bible: Call none your father upon earth: Neither be ye called masters. The meaning is that our Father in heaven is incomparably more to be regarded, than any father upon earth: and no master to be followed, who would lead us away from Christ. But this does not hinder but that we are by the law of God to have a due respect both for our parents and spiritual fathers, (1 Cor. 4. 15) and for our masters and teachers.)

Jesus teaches how merciful and loving Our Father God is in the Prodigal Son Parable.Prodigal-son

And the son said to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, I am not now worthy to be called thy son. [22] And the father said to his servants: Bring forth quickly the first robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: [23] And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it, and let us eat and make merry: [24] Because this my son was dead, and is come to life again: was lost, and is found.  Luke 15:18

agony_ga_VELDE, Adriaen van deAs Jesus agonized in the garden of Getsemani He prays to His Father.

And he saith: Abba, Father, all things are possible to thee: remove this chalice from me; but not what I will, but what thou wilt.  Mark 14:36

Crucifix_Hi_ResThe last words out of His mouth were;

Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.  Luke 23:34

Father into thy hands I commend my spirit.  Luke 23:46

Resurrection_Christ_stained glassAfter Jesus’ Resurrection some of the first words He says are:

Jesus saith to her: Do not touch me, for I am not yet ascended to my Father. But go to my brethren, and say to them: I ascend to my Father and to your Father, to my God and your God.  John 20:17

We learn from this that the word FATHER, in the context of God, is the author of all life, creation and all that is good.  We the pope, (papa), bishops, priests, fathers and godfathers need to remember that all our authority comes from Father God.  And in order to keep this true authority we have been given by God, (to give life and rule), we have to obey God and act like Him.

The pope, bishops and priests are to engender the life of God’s divine grace into souls.  Once it has been engendered, we need to protect it from the wolves and lions ready to devour these souls.

Fathers are to engender human life, (that ultimately comes from God), and protect it and provide for it in a holy manner.  They are to be good examples and good husbands to the mothers of their children.

We are to obey legitimate authority, God, the pope, bishops, priests and our fathers, (of course mothers too).  But we, who have been given any authority from God, will be accountable to God the Father for everything we have said, done, commanded or punished, when we die.  If we command someone to sin, we have absolutely no authority.

How great it is to be a ‘papa’, bishop, priest, father and godfather.  But, woe to us, if in any way we have been a bad example or abused our authority by persecuting good people who have been place under our authority by God.

We are so blessed to be traditional Catholics and to know where life, love, creation and authority comes from; Our Loving, Merciful, Giving, Forgiving, and yet Strict Father in Heaven.  May we also be loving, merciful, generous, forgiving and strict in any role we have as FATHER.