Men, Women, Hair and Veils

Text: 1 Corinthians 11:2-22

Reflection and Question: In this passage, Paul advises the Corinthians on the proper relationship between men and women and between all people and God. The good news is Paul’s implication that women can and do prophesy and pray in public; otherwise, he would not need to write about the conduct of women as they lead the church in these ways. The troubling part is Paul’s struggle to reconcile the ancient teaching that woman came from man and therefore is inferior, the “natural order” of long hair for women and short hair for men, and the equality of God’s love, which seeps through in verse 12, “all things come from God.” What source of wisdom is your guide — ancient teaching, what is seen as “natural,” or God’s love? Why?

Prayer: Holy Spirit, we trust that You will not test us beyond our strength. We know that You teach us through ancient wisdom, natural law and Your loving embrace. Shine though all of these to show us Your way so that we may follow. Amen.

This meditation is based on the Daily Lectionary Year 1 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).