In an earlier article with the same title, I set about to set the base work for this in depth explanation this chapter would have, flooring the incorrect assumption by many in the body of Christ that all women must cover their hair in places of worship. I explained why Paul gave these direct instructions to the women of the Corinthian Church which was to maintain order (which was greatly lacking) and signify submission. Article here.
Feedback from you all demand that I plunge deeper, to explain in simpler language the text contained in the title. What can we learn from it?
Starting at verse 3 of the focus verses, Paul says the head of every man is Christ and the head of the woman is man and the head of Christ is God. Without putting these verses in proper context, it will appear as if God is higher than Christ who is higher than men who is higher than the women. When we say higher, the first thing that comes to mind is inferiority or supremacy, popular human concepts that some would agree on, others would disagree. It is however popular belief that men are superior to women, the feminist would never agree.
Before you cast your stones at me, feminists, do you agree that God is superior to Christ? Many would boldly say yes, some others would falter at giving answer but before the word of God all our opinions would fall, only his word will stand true.
At Philippians 2:6, we see Christ being in very nature, God (NIV), Hebrews 1:3 tells us that the son (Christ) is the exact representation of His being (NIV) and John 1:1 rounds it up clearly, “In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God. So who is the word? Reading the same chapter down to verse 14, “….the only begotten of the father, full of grace and truth”, the word is Christ Jesus.
Would you say Christ who is in very nature, God, is inferior to God? The head of Christ is God. What would Paul have meant; Superiority or Submission?
In a world like ours, these words will seem to mean one and the same thing such that any idea of submission is accepted only if the one being submitted to is a superior but let us look at the example of Jesus Christ here on earth at Phillipians 2:5-8 (an example we should hold on to for our relationships here on earth). Christ did not consider equality with God as anything but instead he humbled and submitted himself like a servant; a man to die for our sakes by God’s will. This is submission. Not on the basis of status but on the basis of respect for one another, honoring each other above even ourselves just as is stipulated in Romans 12:10.
The head of Christ is God could definitely not connote superiority but submission. Let us put it this way instead, Christ being the Son of God, the head in that sentence not literally but figuratively meaning the origin or source. Now we could readily substitute in the various sentences to be:
The source of Christ is God (Christ, the son of God)
The source of Man is Christ (Christ, who with God made man)
The source of the Woman is Man (The woman was made out of the man).
Submission is therefore clearly stated as the base work for Paul’s instruction in this chapter. Submission teaching us to drop human wisdom before the wisdom of God contained in his word, Christ Jesus, teaching us to have great love and respect for one another even as we have all been called to the same purpose and hope of his glorious calling.