So…head covering…yes or no?

This is what my friend posted on my FB link to my last post. If you missed it, go back and read it here. I’ll wait.

Now, after my long rant in that previous post some of you are still wondering: What did she decide about the head covering and what does it all mean?! I know you are waiting with bated breath so I’ll tell you already.

Yes. I think wearing a head covering during prayer and prophesying is pleasing to God. In fact, the verses indicate He flat-out commands it. No, I do not agree that a woman’s hair is her covering…at least not in the sense we are discussing. In short, it appears plain to me that God has told us to put something on our heads when praying and/or prophesying. In fact, I put mine on just now cause it occurred to me I wasn’t wearing it and here I am discussing the Word of God with you. (I have to get used to it, obviously)

First the what: What kind of head covering am I talking about here? God does not specify as to the exact make, style, color etc. Since Paul used the Greek word katakalupto which means to cover up, to veil or cover one’s self, it stands to reason that the covering needs to be large enough to cover at least most of the head. Thus, a barrette or bow or simple head band does not apply.  Personally, right now I am wearing a rather large scarf that I have wrapped around my head like a hijab because it is the most comfortable and warm and stays put without too much fuss, but I DO NOT wear this in public because I do not want to be mistaken for a follower of Islam. We all have seen the kapps the Amish wear, as well as bonnets, cowls, veils, hats etc. I am opting for a simple head scarf/bandana that ties under my hair and hangs down over top of it. As I said, God does not give specifics, just that your head should be covered.

Second the why: Why have I chosen to wear a head covering? Well, as I said before, I believe God has made it a plain command, once we know the original Greek.  But there is a much deeper WHY that we simply must discuss; that is, WHY God says it in the first place:

Remember my great-aunt mentioned in the last post? Well, the first thing she said to me was, “It is all about glory”. She hit the nail on the head.

You see, whether today’s “modern woman” likes it or not, God has a thing or two to say about a woman’s role/position in the grand scheme of things. Simply put, her headship is her husband.  Her husband’s headship is Christ. By headship I mean,

head·ship

/ˈhɛdʃɪp/ Show Spelled [hed-ship

noun

the position of head or chief; chief authority; leadership; supremacy.
Remember our passage, 1 Corinthians 11: But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. NKJV
Jesus Christ, as we know, is one with the Father, being God, and submitted His will to that of the Father’s. He did not act out of His own will but only that which was pleasing to the Godhead. This is to say, man is to submit himself to the authority and leadership of Christ, acting within His will alone and not his own will. Thus, the woman is to submit herself to the authority of her husband as ordained by God. We do not submit because we are inferior, rather our submission is symbolic of Christ’s submission, even submission to the cross. Just as God used Christ’s suffering for Good (salvation to all who believe on Him), He will also use a woman’s submission for a good that we perhaps cannot see right away.
And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Philippians 2:8 NKJV
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28 NKJV
Getting back to 1 Corinthians 11, we are told that a man praying or prophesying with his head covered is a disgrace to his head. Put another way, a man who prays/prophesies with head covered dishonors Christ.  Why is that? Because man was created in the image and glory of God! However, if a woman prays/prophesies with her head uncovered she dishonors her head, namely, her husband. Why? Because she was made from man, for man and is his glory!
For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man.  For man is not from woman, but woman from man. Nor was man created for the woman, but woman for the man. 1 Corinthians 11:7-9 NKJV
If we do not cover our heads, we shame the man, who then in turn, by result, will shame Christ. Thus, the whole order is disgraced! What a responsibility and OPPORTUNITY woman has! Wow!
So then, we have established that a woman is to cover her head with a physical covering (veil, cloth) and that she is to do so because she is the glory of man. She is the glory of man. Okay, big deal. Why cover it up? BECAUSE ALL GLORY MUST POINT TO GOD!!! It is ALL about GLORY TO GOD! The purpose of life…all of it!
When a woman covers her head, she is saying she recognizes and submits to God’s divine order and wants all glory to point to Him.
So what about verse 15?
But if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her; for her hair is given to her for a covering.  1 Cor.11:15 NKJV
The Greek word for covering in this verse is Peribolaion, which means a covering thrown around, a wrapper, a veil.  Now look at this verse in light of its surrounding verses:
Judge among yourselves. Is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered?  14 Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him? 15 But if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her; for her hair is given to her for a covering.  A woman’s long hair is her glory. Remember, it is all about directing glory to God. I continue to find the fact that Paul used two different words for covering very significant. The English language is bad about giving words multiple meanings, such as “day”. Day could mean a specific date (July 4 1776) or an era…”In Paul’s day….” You get the point. The fact he used two different words is important, we just translate them into the same word.
 Thus, she needs to cover the glory that she is (as man’s glory) with the glory that is hers (her hair) and her glory (hair) should be covered so there is no glory but God’s.
Let me also take a moment to mention that verses 5 and 6 say,
But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head, for that is one and the same as if her head were shaved.  For if a woman is not covered, let her also be shorn. But if it is shameful for a woman to be shorn or shaved, let her be covered.  If a woman’s hair was meant to be her covering while praying and prophesying, then “let her also be shorn” would not make sense. The same goes for “that is one and the same as if her head were shaved”. Furthermore, if she is to have her head covered while praying and prophesying then how can she “put on” and remove her hair as the circumstance requires? Plus, if it is shameful for a man to have his head covered, then he should be bald?
No, the most reasonable explanation is woman is to cover her head with a cloth, veil, whatever, while praying and prophesying. This obedience and submission to God’s order is symbolic of Christ’s submission to the cross.
When I think about it, I cannot help but feel deeply grateful at the privilege of being given such a task! Woman has such a unique and special role in God’s order, we should never let today’s culture tell us we are short-changing ourselves because we commit to submit. We are a key element in the beautiful tapestry God designed before time began!
Join me in my next post concerning head coverings where we will discuss the mysterious verse ten!
 For this reason the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels.  What does “because of the angels” mean?
We’ll discuss it next time! Thanks for stopping by!
Maranatha,
Marcia
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9 thoughts on “So…head covering…yes or no?

  1. Thank you for your contribution to this important topic. I am about ready to dive into this on my own blog, but I’ve been again to thus far, as no one I know reads my blog covers. I appreciate your pointing out the aspect of the double covering. I have covered since this summer, basically full-time, but never had a great explanation of verse 15 until yesterday. Her hair is given HER for a covering (of her head) but since her hair is her own personal glory it, too, must be covered in order for all the glory to be given to God.
    I am a Seventh-day Adventist, and at church yesterday there was a family of girls who had marvelous coiffures–one girl with a beautiful French twist and another with rag curls and another with a braided crown–and they were truly beautiful. But I realized that their beauty was distracting and was certainly leading both themselves (because we all are aware when we are looking especially well) and others to focus some thought and attention away from God, who alone is to be glorified, especially in worship. I realized that I myself had long been guilty of the same offence when I took such pains to arrange my hair beautifully for church. Not that I believe we should be careless or slovenly, for that too detracts from God’s glory, but that doing our hair in fancy styles leads others to admire our beauty rather than God’s goodness and majesty.
    May God bless you for seeking to honor and obey Him.

  2. Pingback: Covering the Web: Feb 7/14 | The Head Covering Movement

  3. Thanks for sharing! I cover full-time, and have for about a year and a half. I don’t know anyone else who does, but we’re willing to do this alone – though hopefully honest Bible teaching will bring Christian families back to this practice! Thank you for putting your testimony out there!!

    Diana

  4. I loved reading about your willing heart to study a passage that scares so many. 🙂 I was raised in a nondenominational assembly and don’t recall ever hearing the passage, not to mention any interpretation. When my father-in-law taught me about it I was very resistant. Even while meeting with an assembly that practiced it I refused to until I was fully convinced from my study. Once convicted it was still some time before I humbled myself to it. It has been 14 years since then, and I have learned so much about myself through this practice. I have hated it, been proud of it, felt bound by it, and finally….really free in it. My husband has truly been a huge help. Never pressuring, agreeing in the teaching yet averse to the dowdy approach I took at first. Covering, modesty, glory, all connected, yet the heart of the matter is love. Our First Love actually. Christ. We often wonder (even deny) that a physical act can have spiritual effects. But it’s true. Bowing the knee, giving, spanking a child, even sex all effect the spirit. For good if done in love, bad if done in anger or hostility. So remember that God is perfectly pleased by Christ’s work, not ours. Our obedience doesn’t please Him, but it changes us if done in faith and makes us usable by His Spirit.

  5. I do not think one should shy away from a fuller carting out of fear of Islam — to do so demonstrates fear of man, not fear of the Lord. Why should Muslim women have the edge when it cows to modest dressing and covering as the Lord desires?

  6. Pingback: The Ultimate Head Covering Blog Post Roundup

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