Archbishop Targets Lord’s Prayer for Revision

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James Lasher

The growing apostate church, or those who have renounced biblical Scripture for the ways of the world, is now trying to rename the Lord.

Calling God “Our Father” as instructed by Jesus Christ is now a point of contention for several ministers who have taken issue with the “gendered language.”

The archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, recently sparked controversy during a meeting of the Anglican Church by suggesting that the words of the “Our Father” prayer may be “problematic” due to their “patriarchal association.”

The prayer was instructed by Christ Himself to His apostles in the New Testament.

The Lords Prayer
To learn more about the Lord’s Prayer, view R.T. Kendall’s book The Lord’s Prayer: Insight and Inspiration to Draw You Closer to Him.

Speaking at the General Synod, a gathering of influential members of the Church of England, Cottrell acknowledged that the prayer might cause discomfort for those who have experienced oppression stemming from their own “earthly fathers.” He expressed his understanding that the word “father” could be troubling, given its potential connection to destructive and abusive experiences. Cottrell’s remarks were part of a broader speech on unity within the church. However, his comments ignited a debate among other speakers at the synod.

Canon Dr. Chris Sugden, chair of the conservative Anglican Mainstream group, publicly countered the archbishop’s stance, accusing him of prioritizing mainstream culture over Christ’s literal words in the Bible. Sugden questioned whether Cottrell was suggesting that Jesus was wrong or lacked pastoral awareness, emphasizing the importance of following scripture rather than cultural trends.

Reverend Christina Rees, a female member of the General Synod, defended Cottrell’s perspective. She commended him for addressing an issue that has been a longstanding concern for Christians. Rees posed a question regarding the belief that God favors male human beings as the more accurate bearers of his image, asserting that this belief is erroneous.

The discussion around the Lord’s Prayer comes in the wake of the Church of England’s “project on gendered language,” which explores the use of gender-specific pronouns in prayer and Scripture.

The project suggested the reconsideration of gendered pronouns such as “He” and “Him” when referring to God. Additionally, Anglican leaders will contemplate whether the title “Father” remains appropriate for God.

Father Calvin Robinson, a deacon from the Free Church of England and a critic of the Anglican Church, expressed his dissatisfaction with Cottrell’s speech in a recent Substack article. Robinson emphasized that the prayer is known as the “Lord’s Prayer” because it was taught by the Lord Himself. He argued that God instructed humanity to address Him as Father and taught them to pray using the “Our Father” prayer.

Robinson went on to suggest that Cottrell step down from his position, claiming that he is leading the church astray.

This continuation of wrapping Scripture in worldviews is completely opposite of what believers are called to do. Romans 12:2 exhorts Christians, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”

Sadly, all too many are conforming the Bible to world’s standards, and not the other way around. As this practice continues, the apostate church will continue to grow, just as prophesied in the book of 1 Timothy 4:1. This does however give Christians a perfect topic to cover with Spirit-empowered prayer. To beseech God that He remove the scales from people’s eyes and that they see the truth of God’s Word for what it is, not how the world wants it to be.

James Lasher is Staff Writer for Charisma Media.

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