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Should we call clergy or ministers by the names Pastor, Minister, Reverend or Apostle? I noticed that Jesus in Matthew 23:1-14 stated that we're all brethren.

Let's take a look at what Jesus said about the hypocritical religious leaders and their titles.
They love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to have men call them "Rabbi" (Master). But you are not to be called "Rabbi," for you have only one Master and you are all brothers.
(Matt. 23:7-8)
Jesus said that these men liked to be called "Master." He explained that they are all brothers (or equals) and no man should be master over another, for God is our Master.

I agree with Jesus one hundred percent! Does this mean that we shouldn't refer to a minister as Pastor or Reverend? No, because these terms do not mean master.

They are Biblical terms which refer to ministry gifts that God has placed in the church (Eph. 4:11-12). Men and women who stand in these offices are not better or superior to other Christians (Eph. 2:1-8, Col. 1:12-24).

As a matter of fact, the Bible states that ministers should be servants to the people (Mark 9:35, 10:44). Ministers do have a gift that God has placed in them. This gift enables them to nurture and bless the body of Christ.

It's interesting to note that the Apostle Paul referred to himself nine times as an apostle, while he also referred to Peter and others as apostles.

In light of this fact, I don't believe it is wrong to call a minister by a title which shows our respect but does not elevate the minister to a superior position.

I address other ministers as "Pastor" to show respect for the office in which God has put them.

Copyright © Bible Answers Foundation
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Joseph Cameneti
Web site: Believers Church
Joe Cameneti Sr. is the lead pastor of Believers Church, located in his hometown of Warren, Ohio. Pastor Joe, along with his wife Gina, pioneered Believers Church in 1983 following his graduation from Bible School. In addition to leading a thriving local church, Pastor Joe is the host of a weekly show called "BCTV." The program is aired locally, reaching over 30,000 people each month. Pastor Joe is a gifted communicator, skilled in the art of building bridges to unchurched America. Transparent and authentic, you'll walk away challenged and encouraged to connect with God in a deeper way.

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