Who covers the single women? (1 Cor. 11) PDF Print E-mail
Question: My next thing is this, you may not have the time to answer this question, but we are in the book of 1 Corinthians the 11 chapter.  I guess mainly the verses 3-12 is what I have questions about. Can you explain and break it down to me? We were told that the husband is supposed to be the covering for his wife or the man is supposed to be the covering for the woman if he is spiritual.

So that left a question someone asked, if the husband is supposed to be the covering for the wife, who covers the single women?  It was said that the pastor is supposed to cover the single women, I did not feel that was quite right because I feel like Christ should be our covering, can you help me out on this one?

• Answer: Let's answer from the passage:
3 But I want you to understand that Christ is the headof every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ.

------No puzzle on verse 3!  God is a God of order, and with order, is the responsibility of submission to the God-ordained authority of that order. Unfortunately, we live in a world that wars against God-ordained authority. Even more unfortunate is that this rebellion has infiltrated and weakened the testimony of the church in the world. ------

4 Every man who has something on his head while praying or prophesying disgraces his head.

5 But every woman who has her head uncovered while praying or prophesying disgraces her head, for she is one and the same as the woman whose head is shaved.

6 For if a woman does not cover her head, let her also have her hair cut off; but if it is disgraceful for a
woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, let her cover her head.

--------In the Corinthian society, the temple priestesses would shave their heads.  These
priestesses were also temple prostitutes who conducted immoral sexual orgies in these temples to false gods. They considered this behavior to be 'worship'.  

For a woman to engage in public worship by praying or prophesying in the church under the customs of the time, customs which strictly displayed God's principle, was to be done in a way that did not in any way show rebellion to the man/men who was/were her God-ordained cover. If she did this 'uncovered', it was no less a statement of rebellion as was the woman who had her head shaved.  Today, by custom, we may accept women who in this

American culture may shave their heads, or pray with an uncovered head, but what cannot be accepted is women who in rebellion usurp the authority of men over women in the church (1 Timothy 2). To publicly pray over men, and to preach over men in the church is in rebellion to that God-ordained order.  The church is responsible to uphold the testimony of God's order before the world.  When we do not, then men fail to understand and see the order of God's authority 'over' them, and 'through' them to the world.

This is why families in America are struggling so.  Father's don't fulfill their roles of order, and women won't fulfill theirs.  The man won't do his, and the woman is tempted to fulfill the man's, which she was not ordained to do.  Thus, the children suffer confusion in regard to roles and order.  Thus, we have homosexuality, lesbianism, chuavinism, feminism, pedaphelia, and the like.  Men in rebellion against God's order. Such are the results. ----------

7 For a man ought not to have his head covered, since he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man.

--------In this society, this custom of head covering would allow a woman to outwardly show her submission to her husband and single women to the Lord.  The custom was used to reflect the divine principle.  The principle is unchanging.  The custom is not.  Customs that change though are never to violate the divine principle of God's order.  Hence in the church where women have become pastors, violates this principle.

8 For man does not originate from woman, but woman from man;

 9  “…for indeed man was not created for the woman's sake, but woman for the man's sake.

------Feminist hate this passage!  But this is not only showing the fact of order, but the reason of the order between a man & a woman!  The man was 'alone'.  God made him a 'helper meet'. --------

10Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels.

------The angels know the divine principle of submission to authority and order.  When believers don't uphold that principle in our male/female relationships, the angels are amazed at our arrogance and pride before God, because they 'cover' themselves before God.  Submission is about being under the 'cover' of the one submitted to. 

When we rebelliously remove our 'cover', we remove all other 'covers' above us, and therefore are subject to the schemes of the devil and his demons who also look for an opportunity to manipulate those without their cover.


In Short, without a commentary of a scholar thatcould help with this, this passage (v. 4-10) is speaking about a local custom that reflected and/or violated the God-ordained, unchanging principle of order in relationships.  When you keep 'order' in focus, this passage becomes very clear.   

You are correct that Jesus Christ is the 'cover' of a single woman.  There is nothing in this passage or any other that say's a pastor is someones 'cover'.  Now, a pastor is 'accountable' for the flock He is called to shepherd.  And according to Hebrews 13, we are told to let them care for us without contention because that would not be profitable for us.  But, the key to this truth is in the next two verses.---------

11 However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman.

12 For as the woman originates from the man, so alsothe man has his birth through the woman; and all things originate from God.

-----This is letting us know that even as there is order that should not be violated, neither should we violate God's principle of respect and care for one another.  My order over woman does not make her less than who God made her to be, nor am I to treat her like that (Chauvinism).  Her order in submission to man, is not to cause her to think less of who God made her to be, nor is she to falsely accuse men of dominating women if indeed that is not the case (Feminism).---------

The Friendships of Ministry
Rom. 16:1-16

Passion for the Gospel
Rom. 15:20-33

Stop Knit Pickin' In This House
Rom. 15:8-19


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