Question about Head Covering


Friday Evening, July 13, 2001

What is your understanding on the head covering in 1Corinthians 11? I was always taught that it was just cultural, etc., and never really gave it much thought, but I have recently been restudying it and have come to the conclusion that it is something that should be practiced. Although, I think the overall principle is that of order and relationship—God-Christ-Man-Woman—I just keep coming back to the question of the physical covering that the woman is to wear being right. Also, the passage, “…because of the angels,” makes me think it is to be an outward symbol to the unseen realm of angels, probably both good and bad, as they observe our obedience in keeping our relational order.

I have really been blessed with some of the things that the Lord has revealed to me through you and your understanding of His word, and you have shown me some things that I never thought of before. Although I would like to think that I am free from most of it, I keep finding myself a victim of the old “church of Christ” hermeneutic of prooftexting without really letting the Lord speak to me through His word. My wife and I are just trying to please Him in every way and I wanted to ask your opinion and help in understanding this passage. Please keep us in your prayers as our life is rapidly becoming His only…

Hi, I truly appreciate your heart on matters like this! Honesty and humility and flexibility are truly marks of a Disciple of Rabboni, and your willingness to look at this and whatever else may ever come up is wonderful. Actually, we have come to a conclusion (though that word is misleading, because NOTHING is concluded on ANY subject—that would be the wrong Tree!!!) that the ISSUE in God’s Mind is Authority, illustrated in their world and time by a head covering. “Because of the Angels” deals with authority issues relating to the angels, not head coverings related to the angels. Now, “the very nature of things” WOULD continue, it would seem to us, to press us towards long hair, their glory, for the women, and short hair, relative to the women, for men. That has nothing, apparently, to do with “culture.” If we had ever found that women were less than submissive or were drawing attention to themselves with outsiders, or anything of the kind, because of lack of a hat or headwear, we would clearly need to adjust to His Thought about Authority by dealing with anything that stands in its way.

IF there were some connection in practice or heart between the Issue Paul discusses by the Spirit (Authority) and the head covering (other than hair) as there seems to have been in Paul’s world, we would desire to remedy this quickly. However, since wearing or not wearing certain items (fill in the blank with anything), or a certain tone of voice or mannerisms or habits—anything that would create the appearance of lack of respect or a submissive heart by the women—is seemingly the issue here, that’s what we’re looking for. It goes WAY SUPER FAR past “head coverings”!!! : )

Hope that is a bit helpful, brother of mine!

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