Happy Father’s Day!
Jesus referring to God as his Father was revolutionary in his day. To a first century Jew calling God your Father would have been scandalous.
Yes, God was a Father but only in relation to Israel as a nation but never personally. The Old Testament refers to God as Father 14 times in 39 books. However, in the four Gospels, God is addressed as Father 60 times! Jesus spoke in Aramaic so he probably used a word a child would say when addressing a father, Abba. Abba is difficult to translate but it means something like daddy, papa, but in a more reverent tone, dearest father.
Unfortunately, the term father isn’t comforting to some. Their father-image has nothing to do with love but fear. We often develop our perception of God based on our human fathers – a vengeful deity that easily explodes or a passive, sentimental figure who ignores sin. Both are wrong. The only God that exists is the one the Bible proclaims. We must believe what the Scriptures teach. Our heavenly Father is holy and good. Regardless of your earthly relationships – as a believer you can rejoice in God as your heavenly Father this Father’s Day.