Christian women's headcoverings

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by Tasha, Oct 13, 2003.

  1. Tasha

    Tasha
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    Here's one for ya.. just wondering what you ladies think about the headcovering issues? Some things I have heard in favor of it are (in a nutshell)..

    The Bible says that it is a shame for a woman to not have her head covered when praying or prophesying. The Bible also tells us to pray w/o ceasing, so this would mean all the time...so we should have our heads covered all the time. Also, the bible says that a woman's hair is her crown and glory (so some think hair is good enough as a covering) but it also says men should NOT be covered...which, if you think that her hair is her covering, would sorta imply that men shouldn't have hair, then..and since that's crazy, a headcovering should be worn, by women.

    Sooo....what do you ladies think of these arguments? I'm just wondering b/c I recently come from a denomination that believes in all of this, and I'm not so sure I DO believe in all of it. So, I wanted to know what ya'll thought and what your take was :D
     
  2. dianetavegia

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    http://www.baptistboard.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=14;t=000839

    http://www.baptistboard.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=14;t=000843


    http://www.baptistboard.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=14;t=000854


    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=14;t=000895

    Tasha, those are some posts from the last two months or so about clothing. The headcovering threads got pretty heated and might be locked somewhere. I'll try to find some later but you can do your own search and read them at your leisure. These topics tend to get pretty heated.

    Diane
     
  3. dianetavegia

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  4. Tasha

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  5. Tasha

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    Edited to delete double post.

    [ October 13, 2003, 06:31 PM: Message edited by: I Am Blessed 16 ]
     
  6. Elnora

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    Tasha,

    The passwords are under the forum heading example, 2001, 2002, 2003. Don't know if you have to be a member of the other forums or not, I am. That was the first time I tried to access the archive forums and it worked, so try it.
     
  7. Carson Weber

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    The official Catholic position is that this is a "culture sensitive" issue, and so in cultures where the symbolism of the veil is prominent, women should wear veils in church. In other cultures, this is not necessary.
     
  8. Frogman

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    What isn't a cultural sensitive issue to the Catholic church?
     
  9. AngelforChrist

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    Keep in mind as we examine the message of Paul to the Corinthian Assembly that they lacked the Israelite background. It was a Gentile Assembly. The people were unfamiliar with customs rooted in the Old Testament, but were converts from Hellenistic society. The people retained much of the cosmopolitan Greek culture from which they came. In greek culture , women shaved their heads. Below is the best explanation ive seen on this issue that takes all things into consideration :

    In I Cor 11.10, the Greek says "the woman ought to have authority over her own head." (The English versions add 'a sign of' to this, without the slightest evidence)

    The proper translation of the word exousia in I Corinthians 11:10 ("for this reason the woman ought to have exousia over her head, because of the angels"). The translation of this word has been given much attention, since it is crucial for understanding the passage (11:2-16). Based on the way Paul uses this and related terms (exesti, exousiazein) consistently throughout his epistle (6:12, 7:4, 7:37, 8:9, 9:4-6, 9:12, 10:23) it should mean something like "freedom of choice."

    The statement should thus be translated, "Therefore a woman ought to have freedom over her head," or, more loosely, in context, "a woman ought to be free to wear a veil or not, as she wishes."
    (11:2-16) will conform to the face-value meaning of verse 10. We may begin developing a new understanding of this surrounding argument with the reasonable premise that Paul found it necessary to tell the Corinthians "a woman ought to have freedom of choice regarding her head" because women did not enjoy this freedom in their assembly

    That is, it seems likely, that Corinthian women were going bare-headed in that city's Christian assemblies in deference to an agreed-upon custom, even if they would have preferred personally to wear veils.

    We may observe further that in verses 4-7, Paul not only says twice that it is disgraceful for a woman to pray or prophesy with an uncovered head, he also says twice that it is disgraceful for a man to cover his head when praying or prophesying. It is reasonable to infer from this, at least provisionally, that the Corinthian custom was not only for women to go bare-headed, but for men to wear headcoverings. This would have been a unique local arrangement, perhaps adopted in an attempt to regularize (with theological rationale) the varying Roman, Greek, Jewish, and mystery-religion practices the worshipers would previously have been accustomed to.

    The inferences we have made so far receive support from the good sense we are able to make of verses 2-9. In these verses, Paul would actually be granting the Corinthian premise we have just posited—that worship attire should reflect creation order—but he would be doing so in order to demonstrate its shortcomings. This is a typical way for him to proceed in this epistle. In 15:12-19, he tentatively allows that "there is no resurrection of the dead, as some of you say," but only to demonstrate that this leads to an unacceptable conclusion: "your faith is futile and you are still in your sins" (v. 17). In the same way, Paul would be showing that the Corinthians' premise here–worship attire should reflect creation order–leads to unacceptable conclusions, and should therefore be abandoned.

    Paul's first argument is that if they are really trying to reflect creation order, they're doing it backwards. Since "man is not from woman, but woman is out of man, and man was not created because of woman, but woman because of man" (vv. 8-9), if creation order really does need to be reflected in worship attire, then men should go bareheaded, and women should wear veils. We can see, in this context, that "head" should actually be understood as "source" or "origin" in each one of its three occurrences in verse 3.

    Indeed, the reading we are developing makes good sense of the order of phrases in that verse. Paul would say "Christ is the source of every man" first in order to restore to Christ the glory that would have been denied him if the Corinthians' guiding principle had indeed been, "woman is the source of every man." This would have been Paul's first priority in such a situation. He would say next "man is the source of woman" because he would be on his way to showing the Corinthians they are doing things backwards. And he would conclude with "God is the source of Christ" because his argument itself will culminate with the assertion that "all things are from God" (v. 12).

    We may therefore translate verses 4-5a, "Every man who prays or prophesies with something on his head dishonors his source [Christ, by denying that He is Creator], and every woman who prays or prophesies with an unveiled head dishonors her source [man, by denying that she is from him and for him]."

    "Source," we see, refers to the one for whose sake another is brought into being (v. 9, "neither was man created for the sake of woman, but woman for the sake of man"). This is the idea when Paul speaks here of man as the "image and glory of God" and woman as the "glory of man" (v. 7).

    God, who for His part is the one "for whom and through whom all things exist" (Heb 2:10), having seen that it was not good for the man to be alone, created a helper appropriate for him (Gen 2:18).

    In other words, if we are to insist on creation history, man was created for God, while woman was created for man, and therefore relates to God second-hand, as one created for one who was created for God. Thus, if anyone is to wear a head-covering in worship to express a more distant relation to God, it should be the woman.

    We shall see shortly, however, that this is not Paul's own conviction; it is merely the conclusion unacceptable to the Corinthians to which, their own logic leads.

    Paul's second argument in verses 2-9 is that they are being inconsistent. He seems to appeal to another worship practice they have already rejected, that of women shaving their heads. He says in verse 5b that a woman going unveiled "is one and the same with she who has a shaved head."

    Theologian W. J. Martin argues, the "use of the definite article in . . . 'the shorn woman' would seem to point to the existence of a specific class to whom this designation could be applied.” Martin adds that female head-shaving as a religious rite was "well attested" among the Greeks: "The Vestal virgins and all Greek girls did it on reaching puberty. The earliest form of the custom appears to have been the vow or dedication of hair to a river."

    Whatever the particular practice in view here, it is clear from Paul's taunting "why not go all the way?" rhetoric that the Corinthians did not approve; Paul is teasingly inviting them to explain how this would not bring the woman even closer to God than merely going unveiled.

    By the time we reach verse 10, these two interwoven arguments have concluded. Paul hopes the Corinthians have recognized by this point that if they really want to express creation order in worship attire, if they've got the creation story right, they must permit female head-shaving, and if they've got it wrong, they must do exactly the opposite of what they have been doing.

    Since neither would be acceptable, the conclusion is that they should not forbid women to wear veils: "for this reason a woman ought to have exousia over her head". This explains perfectly why he doesn't instead use the term katakaluptesthai in some expression such as, "For this reason a woman ought not to be forbidden to veil her head."

    Even though this would be a more consistent use of vocabulary from the immediate context, the use of exousia enables Paul to situate the argument here within the theological development of the entire epistle, in which he has already used this term many times.

    That Paul really cared nothing for worship attire as an expression of creation order is clear from his immediately following comments. Verses 11-12 may be translated, "In any case, in the Lord, woman is not without man, nor is man without woman; for just as the woman was from the man, so also man is through woman, and all things are from God."

    Paul is insisting here that the Corinthians lift relations between the sexes off the creation plane and onto that of the "new creation," where, "in the Lord," there is "neither male nor female."

    He transcends the concern for “who is the source of whom” with a vision of mutual derivation (woman from man and man from woman), with all things finding their source in God.

    This vision of mutuality and equality is Paul's own. Clearly, in this vision, there is no place for a community custom discouraging women from wearing veils and expecting men to cover their heads, on the grounds that one is closer to God.

    (Nor, may we add, with reference to our own day, is there any place for limiting the use of certain God-given gifts and talents to only one sex.)

    Paul concludes this part of his epistle with two arguments. He returns to his rhetorical stance at the beginning of the passage, once again assuming the Corinthian position only in order to discredit it.

    Paul begins with an appeal to their own judgment ("judge for yourselves," v. 13), as he does elsewhere in the epistle at the close of other arguments (10:15; 14:37). Specifically, he asks them to tell him whether the pride and comfort women naturally take in having long hair (and men's natural squeamishness about this) does not indicate that women are "meant" to have their heads covered. Clearly Paul has returned to his rhetorical stance at the beginning of the argument: the Corinthians are taking the stance that women should wear veils, and Paul is trying to show them how awkward this is.

    Next, with their unique local custom squarely in view, Paul then informs them "Nobody else is doing this." The Corinthians seem to have been particularly sensitive to the possibility that they might stand out as different from the other churches. Paul needs to reassure them constantly that he isn't treating them differently (4:17; 7:17; 14:33; 16:1).

    Here he is able to find, in their immature conformity, one more reason for them to abandon a practice that told the wrong story about God every time they met for worship.

    To summarize, we have seen that there are no valid reasons to translate the word exousia as "veil" in 1 Corinthians 11:10. Instead, that verse should be translated, "a woman ought to have freedom over her head." This reading does not make sense in the context as it has customarily been understood, since the consensus interpretation finds in 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 an argument that women should wear veils.

    However, it is quite reasonable to reconstruct the historical context for this passage. Here the Corinthian community was actively discouraging women from wearing veils, on the grounds that "woman is the head (source) of every man."

    Paul's comments can then be understood as spoken initially from their perspective; he is assuming the Corinthians' premises only to demonstrate their inconsistency with both the biblical creation narrative and their own rejection of female head-shaving.

    Once he has accomplished this, Paul is free to state his own conviction, which is consistent with the grace-laden themes of his entire theology: "a woman ought to be free to wear a veil or not, as she wishes." As those who seek our ethical guidance from this epistle and the rest of the Scriptures, we should trace out these same themes as we seek to answer the question of God's intentions for the role and ministry of women.

    Excerpted and summerized taken from : Headcoverings for women
     
  10. WPutnam

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    Well, the doctrines concerning the EUCHARIST, for example, does not change over cultural lines. To expand on this, all doctrines are the same whether in Mexico, where women wear mantillas on their heads or in America, where they do not.

    And since wearling the vail is not a doctrinal issue, it then can be a cultural issue.

    God bless,

    PAX

    Bill+†+


    Christus Vincit! Christus Regnat! Christus Imperat!
     
  11. A_Christian

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    Personally, I think hats on women look pretty,
    alluring, and sensual. It is a loss of good breeding that women no longer desire to wear them.

    I wear a cowboy hat.
     
  12. Carson Weber

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    A_Christian, you make me laugh!
     
  13. A_Christian

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    What, can I say? I remember the 1950's and the hippies of the 1960's. Sometimes I just don't see why people would ever think that we have matured, and progressed instead of becoming immature and digressed.
     
  14. Daisy

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    A cowboy hat in New Jersey? 'Nuff said. [​IMG]

    (unless, of course, you actually have cows)
     
  15. A_Christian

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    I go country line & couples dancing with my wife at PROSPECTORS. I'm a "South" Jersey boy. I wear a baseball cap to dress down and I also wear a fedora and or an "Outback" hat. I won't let myself be a victom of fashion. I've worn Hawaiian shirts when they weren't the style and wore forties ties even when nobody else would. I will not be a slave to the opinions of pawns. :D
     
  16. Catholic Dad

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    A_Christian said:
    In Church!!?? [​IMG]
    Please tell us you DON'T wear plaid polyester leisure suits!

    Catholic Dad
     
  17. A_Christian

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    I wouldn't wear a hat in church. NO! I NEVER wore
    a leisure suit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    (not even when they were in fashion---Polyester----clothes were made to sweat in and look like a dang Sears model.

    When I dress down, I'm strictly a jeans and T- shirt guy. I do wear a suit to church, weddings, and funerals.

    When I go whoop-dee-dooing, I do the Garth or the Brooks and Dunn THANG.... (or jeans and T-shirt in the summer-----with my straw....) :D
     

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