We have answered similar question about giving titles to men or accepting titles from men.  We have looked at verses such as Matthew 23:8-12, “But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.”  I suppose we could say it is a natural tendency for someone to want to elevate himself or his position before others.  This is pride and is offensive to the Lord.  Proverbs 16:18 tells us that, “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.”

You asked about men using the title of Reverend and I want to address this title specifically.  In the King James version of the Bible, the word ‘Reverend’ is used only one time.  Psalm 111:9 says, “He sent redemption unto his people: he hath commanded his covenant for ever: HOLY AND REVEREND IS HIS NAME.”  The Hebrew word for reverend is ‘yare’ and means “to fear; morally to revere; causatively to frighten, to be had in reverence.”  We read of the Lord in Psalm 89:7, “God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him.”  It is the Lord who is to be feared, or reverenced.  How tragic it is that some would want to use the same title that belongs solely to the Lord.  We thank the Lord for capable men who can faithfully minister God’s Word effectively, but we want to exalt the Lord, not His servants.  A true servant would say the same thing.  He would desire that His Lord be exalted, not himself.

The use of titles for men robs the Lord of His exalted place.  Titles draw attention to men.  Humility will cause us to shrink from attention and desire our Lord to be seen above all.  To illustrate this point, we see that Paul the apostle never referred to himself as the Apostle Paul as if that was his title.  He referred to himself as ‘Paul an apostle.’  An apostle was what he was.  It was not a trophy for him to flaunt before others.  Nine times he refers to himself as an apostle…he constantly refrained from calling himself the Apostle Paul.  Neither did any of the other apostles. 

May our attitude be as that of Isaiah the prophet in Isaiah 25:1, “O LORD, thou art my God; I WILL EXALT THEE, I WILL PRAISE THY NAME; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.”  As we read in Matthew 23:8, “…ye are brethren.”  May we be content in owning our fellow believers as brothers and sisters in Christ.  That, in itself, is a wonderful privilege.  (CC)  (524.4)