Summary: An expository message on the difficult passage of head coverings in 1 Corinthians and its implications toward submission.
INTRO: I will tell you unashamedly that I am not scared to preach on this passage. Not scared, I am terrified! I want to handle the Word of God rightly and accurately. There is a big, gigantic “HUH?” that you could right over the top of these verses in your Bible. You read this passage once, twice, or five times, and you always come away with the same brilliant, theological question – “What now?” “What does this mean?”
Besides the difficulty of the passage, we are talking about women here! Women! Some of you ladies walked into church today, opened up the bulletin and saw the title had to do with you – and you might already be mad at me. “Well, let’s see what the preacher man has to say about this!”
But let me give you rule #1 for preaching to women about women: “If I say something that can be taken in two ways, one good and one bad, always assume that I meant it in the good sense of the word.” And rule #2 is that when you are in doubt, refer to rule #1.
This chapter begins a new section of the book about order in the church. Pretty large and meaty section of the book.
Illus: A study was done on how members of the various sections of a major symphony orchestra perceived each other. The percussionists were viewed as insensitive, unintelligent, and hard-of-hearing, yet fun-loving. String players were seen as arrogant, stuffy, and unathletic. The orchestra members overwhelmingly chose "loud" as the primary adjective to describe the brass players. Woodwind players seemed to be held in the highest esteem, described as quiet and meticulous, though a bit egotistical.
Interesting findings, to say the least! With such widely divergent personalities and perceptions, how could an orchestra ever come together to make such wonderful music? The answer is simple: regardless of how those musicians view each other, they subordinate their feelings and biases to the leadership of the conductor. Under his guidance, they play beautiful music.
That said, chapters 11-14 of 1 Corinthians help us understand some principles of public worship, and how Christians with all of our differences and diversities can submit ourselves to God and harmonize with our fellow believers. This will be seen in the roles of men and women in the church and in the home, proper procedure for the Lord's Supper, how to use your spiritual gifts to help others, showing true, Godly love and not self love, and so on.
So, why are these verses so tough? Because culture, context, and characters always play a huge part in understanding Scripture. We have to consider to what extent and how this applies to us today. I don’t think we can lift this teaching that was written to 1st century Corinthian Christians and plop it right down on 21st century Christians in America.
I will endeavor to give you a basic understanding of the teaching and also throw in some universal truths that apply today that you can use.
You ready for this? Cause there ain’t no turning back now...