Tuesday, February 25, 2014

To Cover or Not to Cover

Read 1st Corinthians 11:2-15
For awhile my Mom and I were struggling with the hat covering vrs. your hair as your covering. At the time, we were temporarily attending a Mennonite Church. We had read the passage and we, like many others were confused by it. It seemed to contradict itself. While attending the Mennonite Church we asked the ladies for advice. What they said to us didn’t really help. It made it more confusing. Their advice consisted of: We always wear a head covering (some call it a prayer covering), even to bed. We asked them why they did it all the time. They answered with the verse that they are to “pray without ceasing”. This didn’t make sense to us. If they were going to go by that, then the men should never cover their heads to protect themselves from the sun, because it’s a shame for a mans hair to be covered. (Which they do, because they work outside a lot) Even the Bible men, in the climate they were in, would have had to have some sort of head visor and we know they wore them…. Again, we were confused. So, we read on. This time we found other passages of the Bible containing things about hair.
“..likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, 10 but with what is proper for women who profess godliness—with good works.” 1 Timothy 2:9-10
In the above verse, we wondered how Paul knew that the women were getting to fancy with their hair? If it was covered, he wouldn’t have known. Why were the women not wearing their coverings? Perhaps because the long hair, is the covering.. Maybe that’s why it is a disgrace for a women to cut her hair off…And that’s when we began to see the covering as the hair.
Then we see in 1 Peter 3:3-4 how Peter cautions us not to be focused on making our hair fancy or our clothes just right – for it’s the inward beauty that counts. Again, why would he caution us to not be focused on playing with our hair, if it was covered it wouldn’t have been a problem…and doesn’t the New Testament constantly tell us that it is the inward man that “counts” not the outward….?
Then we see the sinner wash Jesus’s feet with her long hair…If it wasn’t covered properly, wouldn’t the pharisees have keyed on that instead of the money “wasted” on his feet?
“And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, 38 and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment.” Luke 7:37-38
After we read these, we went back to Corinthians. What we read seemed suddenly clear! We finally understood. When Paul speaks of the man who prophesies with his head covered, he is talking about long hair. (vrs.4) We can connect vrs. 14 with vrs 4. In vrs. 5-6 we find that it is a shame for a women to cut off, shave, shorn, her long hair. We can connect this vrs. with vrs. 15. “For her HAIR is GIVEN to her FOR her covering.” So, that means, that the men who have long hair and say it’s ok and go on sharing the Gospel are dishonoring themselves in the sight of God. And the same with the woman. God gave the women her hair for her covering. Because woman is the glory of the man, not God. So, he gave us a glory of our own. I find this very exciting!
I am thankful that the Lord has finally showed me what he wants me to do. That it is finally clear and my burden lifted. I hope that you will see it too. ;) Please understand though, that I do not in any way condemn those who wear head coverings. I respect your decision, and I know the Lord is pleased with us when we are doing things for his glory. May God Bless you all.

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