I confess that, even when I was a Methodist, I rolled my eyes at this "point," understanding that it was yet another example of lifting a "one-liner" out of context to justify a chosen position. I received a response from my spiritual father and he brought it around for me in a unique way, helping me to further understand the topic reading from St John Chrysostom I had found earlier.
He wrote: "There is a creative tension inherent in the words of the God-man Jesus Christ. Here, as elsewhere, the temptation is to collapse the tension, to reduce "the words of eternal life" to something that our created, mortal minds can encompass and control. Protestants tend to collapse the tension in one way, the scribes and Pharisees in another.
The scribes and Pharisees, like the poor, are with us always. They correspond to those who can't wait to have a bishop's hands laid upon their heads so that they might be addressed as "Father" by their fellow men, just as the scribes and Pharisees of old loved to be called by men "Rabbi, Rabbi."
You are familiar with the reductionism of the Protestants.
As you discovered through your resourceful investigation, the solution of St John Golden-mouth is much tougher than either of those solutions. He doesn't permit himself to collapse the tension between the Lord's clear words and the Church's universal practice, already well-established in his time. Rather, he lets it stand in all its inconvenience to accuse us, if need be, and bring us to repentance. Indeed, these words ought to make everyone tremble in fear, both those who would dare to address someone on earth as "Father" despite the Lord's plain words, and those who would accept to be so called.
St John is saying that, if someone dare allow himself to be called "Father" by his fellow-Christians, then he must be certain to order every aspect of his whole life in absolute reference to "the one Father, He who is in Heaven." Then, having become a perfect icon of the Heavenly Father, only then may he with all humility accept to be so called." There was more, however, this was the portion that was the meat of his message.
This probably isn't anything new to most of you, but it was valuable to me because I recognize that St John made no attempt to "justify" the position of The Church. Rather, he held Her faithful to a higher standard of understanding and living. No dueling scripture games. Gee. There's a thought.
Again, I appreciate each response...even the snarky one, which was merely stating the obvious so I don't qualify it as snarky.