When any person has been taught from the mouth of another, he is called the son of his instructor. And the instructor is call his father. - Irenaeus(180 A.D.)
I intend to leave good children to posterity. This is the case with children of our bodies. But words are offspring of the soul. Hence, we call those who have instructed us, fathers. - Clement of Alexandria(195 A.D.)
The holy apostles -- Peter, James, John, and Paul -- the sons receiving it from the fathers (but few were like fathers). - Clement of Alexandria(195 A.D.)
You and I understand this, but to play Devil's Advocate (no other wording, sorry Yesh
) as a MJ, the early fathers dont carry as much weight as they do to Yesh as with us. He would look for a scriptural response.