You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free
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If Paul really wrote this, let us assume he referred to Godly, inward respect — but why would he then relate a physical head covering and the length of a woman's hair to her submissiveness to Christ and her Godly husband, which church leaders interpreted as a commandment that women must submit to the dictates of all men on all levels of life, not only to her ‘own’ [Godly] husband in their marriage covenant. (A Godly husband will never dictate to his wife, but lead her in love and truth while giving her a voice and a special place of wisdom and insight beside him.) How could Paul apparently even related a physical head covering to her spiritual position and authority in Christ, (“because of the angels”), simply because, as a woman, “she was created female for her own husband?”
Sadly, church clergies interpreted this ‘covering’ as another commandment that claims, a woman must always have a male ‘head’ as her ‘spiritual cover,’ because “man” is her “cover,” not Jesus. They allege that, if she does not have a husband, another male leader must become her ‘cover’ - which, revoltingly, implies husbandry! But where is this doctrine found anywhere else in the New Testament, or even in the full context of Scripture? Paul himself wrote in Gal. 3:28, “There is neither... male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” And Peter wrote in 1 Pet. 2:9, “[All born again believers in Christ] are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation; His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him, Who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light.”
Was Paul confused and Peter speaking only to men? This uncontextual view of spiritual husbandry (having a male head besides a wife’s ‘own’ husband) is demonic not Godly, and jeopardises the woman’s reputation and position in the congregation as well as in the Kingdom of God. What happened to the woman’s own authority in Christ through her personal salvation in Him? Only a woman’s own husband is the head of their home, and Only Jesus Christ is the spiritual Cover, or the Protective Banner over them both! Godly husbands will never assume spiritual power and authority over their wives that belong to Christ. And Godly men will never assume husbandry over other women except their ‘own’ wives, as that is [spiritual] adultery!
The serious question also remains, should a woman, as a blood-bought, born again, Spirit-filled, blessed child of God, prove her inward attitude of respect for the “angels,” her own husband, or the congregation by the wearing of a veil and by giving legalistic attention to the length of her hair?
This sounds more like Islamic rule than Jesus’ true body of believers, who are all subject to only one, inward, New Testament Law: the Moral Law of Love. The context of New Testament Scripture commands no other outward sign of faith, except the Scriptural baptism of born again disciples, the Lord’s Supper and the anointing of oil in healing as a mere symbol of the Holy Spirit. (Mt. 28:19; 1 Cor. 11:23-31; Jam. 5:14-16.)
Unless a woman sinfully or without good cause, (one cannot respect a womanizer, adulterer, violent oppressor, drunkard, drug addict, lazy miser, child molester, etcetera, because then you must submit to and respect all sin,) has no respect for her “own” Godly husband – which seemingly is not the case here; her femininity, marriage relationship and the spiritual order of her marriage covenant have absolutely nothing do with her calling, giftedness, and ministry in the congregation.
Footnote, Spirit Filled Bible, 1 Cor. 11:5-10: “A proper understanding of this section is based on understanding Creation Principles, [God’s universal plan for the general management of secular life, versus God’s specific plan for the home], and Corinthian customs. Uncontextual, outdated Corinthian customs [just as in Judaist and Muslim tradition] dictated that a woman who appeared bareheaded in public was considered to be loose and immoral. [Traditionally], uncovered [or cut] hair, or a shaved head symbolised a loose, unclean condition.”
In the very beginning, God created male and female to manage and protect His creation together as equals. Likewise, He spiritually recreated (Jn. 3:3-5) fallen mankind of both genders through the spiritual rebirth in Christ, to live as equals in His spiritual kingdom as His symbolically female bride of Christ, (Gen. 1:26-28; Gal. 3:26-29; 1 Pet. 2:9-10.)
So, why did Paul command the woman to “submit” to all men in the body of Christ, while God merely commanded her to submit to the Godly and good leading of her own husband for the sake of their own marriage covenant as the symbol of all Jesus’ believers’ submission to Him? And why would Paul command that women must “have other men as spiritual covers over them if they do not have husbands?”
After all, the God-inspired submission of both male and female to one another in everything good and Godly, is the crux of the spiritual bride’s relationship with Christ, and not just of the marriage covenant, but of every relationship on earth — and of the relationship between all believers in particular.
Why did Paul, in all fairness, not silence those evil religious Christian men who abuse women spiritually, emotionally, physically and verbally — abusing God first by using His Word out of context as a deadly weapon to justify their witchcraft against women? Why didn’t Paul command them to submit to the authority of the entire [symbolically] female bride and body of Christ? At least, that would have been Scriptural, good, and Godly, (1 Pet. 3:7; 1 Tim. 3:2-16.)
“LET WOMEN KEEP SILENT IN THE ASSEMBLIES; FOR IT IS NOT PERMITTED UNTO THEM TO SPEAK, BUT THEY ARE COMMANDED TO BE UNDER OBEDIENCE, AS ALSO SAYS THE LAW?”
It seems that Paul still granted women, who wore traditional head coverings, permission to pray and prophesy [or minister] publicly in 1 Cor. 11:5. However, in 1 Cor. 14:34, he commanded their complete silence, “...As also says the Law?”
While some allege that this is not a prohibition on ministry; [whoever spoke here] was merely admonishing chattering during sermons, this is clearly not the case. Paul, or perhaps later male chauvinist theologians, ‘lawfully’ commanded women in all the assemblies to keep quiet – in the context of the public ministration of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Supposedly, it is disorderly for a woman to minister in the assembly just because she is female.
Paul fought throughout New Testament Scripture for freedom from the Ceremonial Law to obey only the Moral Law, which is written on the hearts of all humanity. Yet, a “law” is used here to support this uncontextual command – a law that does not exist in Moses’ Law or anywhere else in the Bible. Some theologians refer this ‘law’ to Gen. 3:16: “He shall rule over you.” Yet, this too, is clearly not a law at all but a warning to all husband-worshipping women. Even if it were a ‘law,’ did Christ not fulfil the entire Law for females as well? (Gal. 3:7-14; 2:18-21.)
Spirit Filled Bible, footnote, “The woman was not directly cursed, [in Eden] although it is obvious that she comes under God’s general curse [just like the man does.] Rather, there will be a major marring of her appointed roles as wife and mother. Maternity will be with great suffering [because of the fall;] therefore Old Testament women saw large families as a sign of blessing. “He shall rule over you,” asserts the divine assignment of the husband’s servant-leader role. There is no evidence that this was ever intended as diminishing her person or giftedness, [or her place in God’s Universal Plan for humanity to manage His creation together with males as their equal.] It does not assert male dominance over females. It does assign husbandly responsibility for leadership in the marriage relationship.”
“LET THEM BE TAUGHT IN SILENCE AND BEAR CHILDREN TO BE SAVED!”
Then, there is Paul’s instruction to Timothy in 1 Tim. 2:11-14: “Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection.” According to Paul, (if it were really him speaking,) a woman should sit in silence and be taught by her husband, even if he is not capable to teach anyone. Even if God called her and entrusted His gifts of teaching, prophecy, etcetera to her, the woman has no platform from which to speak.
That is absurd! Yet Paul or whoever continued: “I allow not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.” What happened to “there is neither male nor female, for we are all one in Christ?” Shouldn’t both male and female obey the Holy Spirit above all else? Did Paul’s command to “submit yourselves one to another [in all truth and Godliness, Eph. 5:21,]” suddenly disappear from his mind? And what is his reason why women supposedly ‘must not usurp authority over men’ in the secular and religious world? “For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.” In reality Paul said: “I do not allow a woman to teach or have authority as a joint-heir of Christ, because even spiritually, she was created a lesser being. She remains untrustworthy – remember how her mother Eve was deceived? Therefore her sinful, cursed state still counts against her.”
True, the woman was deceived, while “her husband was with her” when Satan deceived her, (Gen. 3:6.) Why didn’t he, as the “spiritual head of his wife,” intervene before she was deceived, but instead, chose to be deceived with her? What’s more, is the woman not forgiven and recreated in Christ just like the man? (Gal. 2:20-21.) “For Adam was first formed”, implies that Paul subjected the woman to the rule, authority, even the marital possession of all men, not only to that of her “own” husband, as he also taught.
This religious-misogynist-patriarch view has serious, far-reaching implications.
If religious leaders are correct, and males must lord over all females in general, it actually implies that women are lesser beings, common property, concubines, and even sexually, men may use and abuse all women, also the wives of other men, as they please, (Heb. 13:4.)
It is therefore not surprising that rape, sexual discrimination and violence against women infected human society as a whole and is growing out of all proportions in our day. Not even among animals do female wolves, for instance, live in a position of submissiveness toward their male equals in the pack. Yet, religious misogynists expect women to submit even to strangers, bequeathing ultimate authority to every male; commanding women to submit to their sinful and even shameful rule.
Still, it is not surprising that Paul did not allow women to lord over men.
No believer should lord over another, but in humbleness the one must “esteem the other higher” than him- or herself, and we must all “submit to one another” - in everything that is true, good and Godly, (Eph. 5:21.)
In spite of this, Paul allegedly also wrote in 1 Tim. 2:15: “The woman shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.”
Christ alone saves every one of us through His atoning work in our place, yet Paul wrote that the poor woman must be saved by bearing children – and then only “if they,” (meaning the children,) behaved correctly. Even though some Bibles try to explain this text by twisting “if they” to “if she,” it still implies the woman can only be saved by bringing children into this world. Fact is, good behaviour as such cannot save anyone, neither the woman nor her children, (Rom. 3:23-24.) Even if Paul meant that childbirth will not ‘hinder the woman’s salvation,’ as some of the translations comment, this remains a totally unacceptable remark.
We can never doubt that Paul was a chosen instrument in the hand of God. He received wonderful revelations and understood God’s kingdom in a miraculous way.
But we can be certain that, if church clergy did not add these passages to Scripture themselves, Paul’s religious misogyny did not emanate from God.
The ancient world was ruled by men.
They were all devoutly religious and their deceived leaders led them to believe that God discriminates against women; therefore it is their ‘right’ to do the same.
But, through all the ages, they have been wrong about the role of women in secular and religious life — and even in marriage. Those misogynists who still misunderstand or reject God’s creation principles and the contextual truth of the New Covenant in Christ, are still wrong. No, not just wrong; very sinful and evil, to say the least, demeaning and abusing what God Himself had commanded and done for both male and female, believing humanity in Christ.
Read this article from the beginning
Escaping abuse: “My soul is Calm and Quiet like a weaned child”