1 Cor. 11:1- 16 Your Hair, Your Head, Your Heart


Intro: Now chapter 11 begins w/ what they call in literature & public speaking as a transition / a phrase that links one section to another.

A) A phrase that is the closing point in one section but the beginning point in another section / the connecting of one IDEA to the next.


B) Paul has been talking about our freedom in Christ - liberty that we have in the Lord. - that is so wonderful & awesome .

1)But Paul has also said that he was willing to forfeit that liberty so if it

†† meant that in exercising that liberty - that others would be stumbled


C) Or that the message of the gospel would be hindered - In other words Paul was saying I will die to myself & deny myself so that others are not stumbled but are built up & strengthened



D) Paul also said that I have become all things to all men that I might save some .



Guys that is exactly what Jesus did. He became all things to all men- He left the glory of heaven - & took on flesh & blood - became man.

A) Then He who knew no sin lit. became sin - took upon himself all the sins of the world why ?


B) So that He might - save some - & so that He might be a perfect High Priest to those who are saved.


C) So Paul says imitate me as I also imitate Christ - perfect conclusion to this section on liberty - true liberty is found in following Christ.

1) Allowing Christ to be Himself in your life - lead you in those areas where you need to die to self / deny self /†† truly free

That really sums up all that Paul has been saying on this issue of Christian liberty

A) But Paulís words are also a wonderful intro. to the current section of scripture here in chapter 11 - because by stating that He is following Christ

1) Paul is also saying that Christ is the Leader / that Jesus is the HEAD and that Paul is in submission to HIM !!!!


B) That is the focal point of the first part of Ch.11


B) See although there is great freedom in Christ -/ and we experience the beauty of a relationship w/ Christ -

1) That Christianity is not about rules/ rituals & regulations where by we recite this & say that -


a)   A systematic system of ritual where by I move my hands in this direction or in that direction - burn incense at this time / recite this scripture here

1) No it is not that at all .


C) No my relationship w/ the Lord is one that is free from rules & Reg. / it comes from the heart & meets Godís heart

1) And because it is Spirit & it is based upon truth it is one that He is pleased w/ - so far from religiosity & Churchianity


D) Not religious -†††† But let us not in the heart of what Paul is saying / let us not liberate ourselves or free ourselves

†††† 1)from that which has been pre-ordained / or pre-planned by the Lord &

††††††† is part of the foundational understanding for peace in Godís house


d) There is an order to our walks w/ the Lord & in Church life / it is not to bea free for all - submitted to Christ & His word.


E) There must be some order - there must be some rank in relationship & that is what Paul establishes here in 1st part ch. 11

In this section before us Paul is continuing to answer questions written to him by the church

A) The Question he isdealing w/ in the 1st part of ch. 11 is on the role of women in public worship


B) But Before diving into this Paul begins on a positive note by praising the churchv.2


2Now I praise you, brethren, that you remember me in all things and keep the traditions just as I delivered them to you.

A) Paulappreciated the fact that the church remembered him &and that they werefaithful to keep some ofthe teaching that had been given them.


B) SoPaul praises them in the areas where they were doing well before pointing out some of the areas where they were not doing so well.

††††††††† 1) Good thing to practice


One of the biggest problems in the Corinthian church was disorder in the public meetings.

A) Some of the women were assuming more freedom than they should have; there was disorder at the Lordís Supper;

1) and there was confusion in the use of the spiritual gifts.


B) ďThe church had been greatly enriched with spiritual gifts, but they were sadly lacking in spiritual gracesĒ.

1) Paul sought to correct this first problem by reminding them of a principle that had been ordained by God .


C) PRINCIPLE OF HEADSHIP- Understanding this principle is a key in our walks w/ the Lord / in marriage, inministry & Church life. V.3


3But I want you to know ( understand- I want you to get this) that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.

A) In discussing this issue of Headship Paul - considers 3 aspects

††††††††† God /Christ / Man/


B) And In stating this principle Paul is illustrating thatit is evident that there is a definite order of headship in Godís plan .


C) And when talking about the subject it is always important to keep in

††††† mind the big picture .


C) In other words the issue isnít whoís better man or woman / issue is Godís

††††††††† divine order!

1) He has a system set up that at times we may not fully understand

††††††††† but the best thing is for us to obey!


D) So Paul lays out this principle by stating 3 degrees of headship

††††††††† start w/ last one first - give best understanding !



God is the head of Christ :

A) Now understand that Christ has never been before, during, or after his incarnation inferior to the father


John 10:30 30"I and My Father are one."†† -SPEAKS OF EQUALITY


BUT IN JOHN. 14:28 28"You have heard Me say to you, 'I am going away and coming back to you.' If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said, 'I am going to the Father,' for My Father is greater than I.


Now is that a contradiction? - Jn. 10:30WE ARE ONE / Jn. 14:28 - The father is greater - what is going on here.

B) It is the rank & role relationship between Father & Son as established for the purpose of redemption.

1) The only way that you & I could be redeemed is if there was a voluntary submission that occurred in the GodHead.


C) And as it occurred in the Godhead - as it reads in Psa. 2 :7 7"I will declare the decree: The LORD has said to Me, 'You are My Son, Today I have begotten You.


D) if that wouldnít have happened we wouldnít have been redeemed - saved


Yes there is equality in the Godhead - but on a certain day & for a certain season . Christ Jesus voluntarily submitted himself to the will of the father - for the purpose of our redemption.


B) In His Incarnation He willingly submitted Himself to the Father in His role as Savior & redeemer !

1) He lovingly submitted Himself to His father : Take this cup Ö..

††††††††† An act of humble obedience in fulfilling His divine purpose!


C) Joy set before Him He endured the Cross - Saw the big picture !

††††††††† So 1st Jesus submitted to His Father!

1) Joy was in fulfilling His FatherísPlan & seeing men saved


D) Paul says Imitate me as I imitate Christ - as I also live to Please the

†††† father & see men get saved !


2nd look at the relationship of man to Christ /Christ is the Head ofevery man !

AA) Head refers to the ruling part of the body . but here is stated as

†††††† a general principle !


A)Matt. 28:18 "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and onearth.

B) Most of mankind has never acknowledged Christ authority /


Phil. 2: 9-11 9Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,


D) those who willingly submit to His authority make up the Church & those who rebel against His authority make up the world !

1) So Christ is the Head of every man & there is a day coming when

†††††††††††††††††† He will exercise His authority in Judgment !


E) So Christ is the Head of the Church

1) But think about it He doesnít lead Tyrant but as a loving leader who

†††† seeks to lead His people into blessing !



3rd Aspect of Divine Order - is the Headship of man over the woman!

A.) Understand - Paul makes no distinction here between men and women as far as relates topersonal worth, abilities, intellect, or spirituality


B) Both as human beings & as Christians, women in general are completely

†††† equal to men,spiritually- neither male nor female.


B.) Some women are even superior to men in ability, talent, skill, intellect, maturity and spiritually

1.) but men & women different - temperaments - personalities


C.) Guys like Root beer mug - Mac Truck - strong sturdy -

1.) women like a wine glass, delicate - sports car - finely tuned!


D.) God being master planner - He is set up this divine order so that men and women - operate - according HISplan ( Great support of each other)

Now Paul inseparably ties the 3 aspects of the principle together.

A) As Christ is submissive to the Father and Menare to be submissive to

Christ /women are to be submissive to men

1) It is a voluntary submission that says I want to operate in the realm

†††† of Godís preordained plan / order / & design.


B) The authority of submission in each of these cases is based on love - not tyranny


A) The Father sent Christ out of love - not under compulsion - to redeem

†††† the world


B) the Son submitted to the Father out of love, not compulsion

1.) Christ loves the church so much that He died for it - and He rules the church in love - not in tyranny


C) In response, the church submits to Him in love/ seeks to serve Him


D) Likewise, men in general and husbands in particular should exercise their

authority in love - not in tyranny.

1.) They do not have authority because of greater worth, ability - but simply because of Godís wise design and loving will


E) Women need to respond in loving submission as they were designed to do



Quite frankly - this is a message that many woman - hate today - many would say havenít you heard that this is the 90ís

A) We are CEOís / corporate heads - we run big business & large companies - But You cannot, for example, reject


B) the principle of womanís submission to man without also rejecting Christís submission to the Father and believersí submission to Christ

b) But understand that this is Godís order for kingdom / & homelife


C) To resist this order - is to find yourself in a place where not really going to experience Godís blessing.


So here in v.3 - we see principle - stated - 3 pictures of Headship according to Divine Plan V.4-7 - Principle applied:


4Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonors his head.5But 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.

6For 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.

7For 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.


The issue stated here - is that of head coverings

A.) In the Corinthian culture it was not proper for a man to cover his head in the assembly


B.) Where this custom originated is uncertain - little historical data on subject

1) In same way - men not right to be covered - it wasnít proper for

†††† woman to go about uncovered


C) The Jewish custom was for all women to cover their heads with a veil when they went outside their homes.

1) To appear in public without a veil was a sign of immodesty and lack of virtue.


D) To appear in a worship service without a veil was unthinkable.

1.) In fact, the only women in that culture who went around w/ heads uncovered - were prostitutes


D.) They wore their Heads uncovered -oftenhair short - or head shaved!

So wearing a veil or covering in public - especially church - was a womanís way of being different from world

A.) Also - was a way of stating her devotion and submission to her husband as well as her commitment to God


B.) If a woman were to pray or prophesy in that culture w/out a covering - it would draw attention to herself

1.) make statement - she was her own woman / doing own thing - not any submission to anyone


b) It would be an outward representation to the world concerning the condition ofher heart that she didnít want to submit to husband

1) And there by she didnít want to submit to God - Not interested in

†††† glorifying God - more interested in glorifying self.


C.) This I believe is main issue here - ďWho do we want to glorify and draw attention to?Ē

1.) ďAll things done for the glory of GodĒ



Now - in our culture - head coverings are not an issue. / But there is an issue of women being in submission to husbands /i.e. to God

A) There is a big issue to consider about - people drawing attention to themselves or seeking to themselves & not the Lord.


C.) Now that is exactly the point Paul makes in v.7 -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.


Word glory could actually - be translated - reflection

A) Catch this - man is reflection of God! How I live is to reflect my relationship w/ the Lord -Glorify HIM Hopefully - others see Jesus in me!


B) For a woman - not only reflection of the Lord, but if married - also of her


1.) How my wife is doing will reflect where I am at w/ the Lord


D.) What my wife is doing will reflect whether the issue of submission is being carried out in our home


d) But - there are ways - in church - men and women draw attention to

†† themselves!


E) Praying - flowery prayers - Spurgeon do your devotions at Home /know pastors who read prayers - someone else wrote - or memorize - Spurgeon -

1) Worship - sit in front & draw stand sway -


F) Less spiritual things like what I wear -†† Ladies - pants so tight have look painted on - purpose ? Not comfortable


See that is the problem ( exalt self draw attention to self demand our rights / fulfill our desires )-THE GOAL IS LOST

AA)our goal is to draw attention to and point people to Jesus!


A) Ask What I wear - drawing attention to me?


B.) How I act? What I say?-My focus - should be to be a reflection of Jesus Christ to whoever - meets me


C.) Now that is exactly the point Paul makes in v.7 -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.


Word glory could actually - be translated - reflection

A) Catch this - man is reflection of God! How I live is to reflect my relationship w/ the Lord -Glorify HIM Hopefully - others see Jesus in me!

B) For a woman - not only reflection of the Lord, but if married - also of her


1.) How my wife is doing will reflect where I am at w/ the Lord


D.) What my wife is doing will reflect whether the issue of submission is being carried out in our home



Sad to say - seen marriages where - wife is not in submission ( Problems)

A.) Trying to run the show - be seen - call shots - not only is husband ( Not growing like he should )†††† not a reflection of the Lord


B.) Thatwife reflects a home that is out of order and not displaying Godís plan!


C.) What was meant to be a beautiful union results in a picture that is out of balance - distorted

1.) God cannot bless



So Paul applies the principle - man has headship over the woman in that situation - goal - reflect Christ - His plan

A) Jesus wanted to reflect the FATHER


V.8-16 - Principle is defended and Paul gives 2 examples to strengthen his case! 1st Godís order of design seen in Creation - v.8-9

8For man is not from woman, but woman from man.

9Nor was man created for the woman, but woman for the man.


A.) When God made man and women - the woman was created from the man and for the man! Helpmate / completer not a competer

††††††††† 1) One of the best things a woman can do is fulfill that role

B.) So in His original design - God laid out this order - Paul is saying - From the beginningseen in creation


Now in V.10 -Paul saysSomething interesting -10For this reason the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels.


Seeing the head coverings as a symbol that a woman isunder authority

That she is submitted to her husband - honor her husband

AA) Paul seems to indicate here that a womanís lack of submission can be offensive to the Angels


A) Angels Godísmessengers & ministers / although they are beings of great power they are submitted to almighty.


B) When we as Christians are not submitting ourselves to Godís plan -they get offended.

1) Advantage of dwelling in that realm of perfection/ seeing Godís

††††† perfect order -


C.) Our submission testimony to them!

1.) Remember - Satan and 1/3 of angels - thrown out of heaven - lack of submission


D) Seen that lack of submission before & they know the destruction it causes



If Satan cannot get men to deny or disregard Godís Word he will try to get them to misinterpret it & carry it to extremes the Lord didnít intend.

A) Lest men abuse their authority over women, Paul reminds them of their equality and mutual dependence.†† V.11,12


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

12For as woman came from man, even so man also comes through woman; but all things are from God.


A) Manís authority over woman is a delegated authority and a derived authority, given by God to be used for His purposes and in His way.


B) Man as a fellow creature has no innate superiority to woman and has no right to use his authority selfishly.

1) Male chauvinism is no more biblical than feminism. Both are

†††† perversions of Godís plan.[1]


C) Men and women are to compliment each other - function as a divinely

ordained team!

1.) Men and women are ateam yet - have different roles


C.) Man - head, leader -Woman - helper, supporter, companion



2nd Defense - Nature:v.13-1613Judge among yourselves. Is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered?

14Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him? 15But if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her; for her hair is given to her for a covering.

16But if anyone seems to be contentious, we have no such custom, nor do the churches of God.


A)   Term - nature - could be translated instinct - or an innate sense of what is

normal and right


B) For a woman in that culture to pray in public w/ her head uncovered - she would be acting like a man - & that is not right .


C) And for a man to have long hair so that He looks like a woman - not natural - notice it doesnít say it is a sin. - shame . dishonor

1) Canít tell if guy or a girl problem.


D) If a guy is spending so much time on his hair - shame


B.) Again - custom in that culture was such that a man had shorter hair than a woman

1.) although no where in Bible does it say how long or short a man or womanís hair should be-room for definition


Dad Jesus had long hair - Jesus walked where-ever he went



C.) Now what is interesting is men and women have distinctive physiologyís in many ways

1.) one of them is in the process of hair growth on the head.

2.) hair develops in 3 stages - formation & growth, resting & fallout


D.) The male hormone testosterone speeds up the cycle so that men reach the 3RDstage earlier than women.

1.) The female hormone estrogen causes the cycle to remain in stage 1††††

††††† for a longer time, causing womenís hair to grow longer than menís.


E) And women are rarely bald because few even reach stage three.


E.) This physiology is reflected in most cultures of the world in the custom of women wearing longer hair than men


So in nature we see this design - and in instinct we know - true - as well!

A.) Application for our culture: In their culture - seemed to be a very real distinction - different menís hair length

1.) There was to be a distinction between men and women


B.) In our culture - we donít have that distinction as it relates to hair

1.) But there should be a clear distinction as to men not looking like women


C.) Clothes - makeup - etc.

1.) Godís plan - men to be men - women to be women!



Paul concludes by saying that the church ought not to make rules in connection with the matter of womenís dress or menís hair.

A.) The really important issue is the inner man - the HEART


B.) It is the old nature which needs a haircut and the robe of righteousness.

1.) If we are clothed with the robe of Christís righteousness and if our old nature is under the control of the Holy Spirit, that will take care of the outer man


C.) The haircut and the style of clothes wonít make much difference..

1) Head coverings brought submission - sell in book store


D) If short hair resulted in godliness in men - barber shop - real issue is a matter of the heart that seeks to allow Christ be the head

1)That means I will seek to glorify Him & fulfill my role















[1]MacArthur, John F., The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, (Chicago: Moody Press) 1983.