Messiah is the 'head' of every man
This week we are going to continue with 1Cor 11.1-16 and the subject of headcoverings. Again, the key to understanding this portion is v3 and we are going to continue with verse 10 and will intermingle commentary with the verse.
v10....Therefore, the woman ought to have authority (a ruling power, like a husband or father) on her head (v3), because of the angels (who usurped authority that wasn’t theirs and fell).
v11....However, in the Lord neither is woman independent of man nor is man independent of the woman(but together are complete).
v12....For as the woman originated from man, so also the man has his birth through a woman and all things originate from God.
v13....Judge for yourselves, is it proper for a woman (remember, woman in many cases is to be understood as "wife", especially here) to pray to God uncovered (by going against her husband’s authority..no!).
v14....Does not even nature teach you that if a man has long hair, it is dishonorable to him.
v15....but if a woman has long hair it is a glory to her. For her hair is given to her for a covering.
v16....But if one is inclined to be contentious, we have no other practice nor have the churches (don’t bother to argue about this because the Scriptures teach this headship concept).
So, with that in mind let’s briefly look at Num 30. 1-16. This chapter is called the Law of the Tongue and it has to do with the power of the spoken word and it is based on tribal concepts and customs. These concepts would be carried down even after Israel was settled in their own land.
When congregations were established, these concepts were used to keep order not only in the congregation, but also the family.
The basis for this Torah instruction is found in Gen 3.16.
Basically, the heads of the tribes were told that if a man makes a vow, he better keep it.
Also, if a woman makes a vow but lives in her father’s house and her father hears the vow, he can annul the vow.
But, if he does nothing the vow stands. The same is true for a wife.
The husband can annul her vow on the day he hears of it, but if he says nothing then it stands.
The point is the daughter and the wife have a head over them and they cannot usurp authority over their "head."
This basic order goes all the way back to Gen 3.16 and when Paul is giving this basic instruction in 1 Cor 11 he is drawing from many verses and concepts found in the Torah.
This concept in 1 Cor 11 is nothing new and is merely passing on to the Corinthians what was already being taught since creation.
The Corinthians had a particular problem at that time because of the Greek religious cults that told women that they didn’t have to listen to men, that they were independent and could do what they wanted to.
Well, once these pagan people became believers they still carried some of their old religious concepts with them and that’s why Paul had to deal with it.
This is not saying that a man is better than a woman but that there was an order established since creation and the Corinthians had no idea about them, so Paul is establishing a biblical order for their congregation.
Remember, he praised them in 1 Cor 11.2 for holding fast to the "traditions" (Jewish concepts and laws in line with Scripture) and this one of the concepts he is teaching them.
Now, in light of what we have learned so far about authority, next week we’ll look at 1 Cor 14.34-36 and 1 Tim 2.11-15 in the New Testament and hopefully clear up some misinterpretation concerning these verses.