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Are headcoverings meant for today? (Feminine Fidelity Podcast)

Are head coverings biblical? What does God’s Word have to say?

One hundred years ago, most Christians in the Western world still believed that women should cover their heads during worship. There were no arguments, no contention in the Church, over head coverings. Then things began to change as the church bent to feminism, secular reasoning, and liberal theology and overall cast aside the practice of head covering that the church had practiced for nearly 2,000 years. Ultimately the church adjusted the Bible to the culture rather than demanding culture adjust to Scripture. 

The abandonment of the ordinance of head covering for women in worship (and uncovering for men) has led us to this point in time where the world cannot even tell us what a woman is and is transfixed by trans-ideology. When the church abandons Scriptural teaching, what is the world supposed to do? Where can the world turn for truth if the Body of Christ has abandoned it because it is inconvenient?

Paul linked head covering in worship with the proper practice and administration of the Lord’s Supper. These ordinances were passed onto the churches through the Apostle’s teachings and the written Word. According to Paul, both are meant to be observed by the universal church throughout time.

Hooser Daddy on Twitter: “A word of caution. Mark and avoid any man (or woman) who makes a matter of culture, what scripture calls a matter of creation, and universal church practice. Today they will forbid head covering, tomorrow they will have a woman in their pulpit, or a man in their bed.”

The Glory of God is at stake over head coverings in worship. In 1 Corinthians 11: 2-16, the Apostle Paul devotes 15 verses to the subject of head covers. There are more verses dedicated to the subject of head covers than there is to the virgin birth of Christ or the mechanics of baptism, yet we trust God’s Word and believe it concerning those subjects (via Dr. Michael Barrett). When the Lord says something, we ought to believe it be it one verse or many.

“If I’m a Christian, I am bound by what Scripture tells me to do.”
~Elisabeth Elliot

Standing for what we believe in:
Brian Sauvé

One of the best ways to win people to a position is to be obstinately cheerful about it—secure in your conviction and not always trying to debate it on every thread on the internet.
One of the worst ways to win people to a position is to be super duper insecure about it, and needing to debate it at every possible opportunity is often just that—insecurity.
This has been my approach with something like head coverings.
We don’t press the issue in our church, proselytize it constantly, or side eye ladies who don’t cover. Instead we’ve just set a cheerful example and given a reasonable defense when asked, “Why do you do that?”
The result? Lots of families have considered the argument in their own time, come to a conviction—often ended up pro-head covering.
I think if they’d been met with a full-court-press debate immediately, they would’ve had the knee-jerk instinct of, “Anything but what they think.”
The cage stage of anything is rarely super convincing.
Just be patient, hold your convictions firmly and jovially, be reasonable, and fight the instinct to get everyone around you to agree with everything you think in the shortest possible amount of time.

R. C. Sproul: “What if, after careful consideration of a Biblical mandate, we remain uncertain as to its character as principle or custom? If we must decide to treat it one way or the other but have no conclusive means to make the decision, what can we do? Here the biblical principle of humility can be helpful. The issue is simple. Would it be better to treat a possible custom as a principle and be guilty of being over scrupulous in our design to obey God? Or would it be better to treat a possible principle as a custom and be guilty of being unscrupulous in demoting a transcendent requirement of God to the level of a mere human convention? I hope the answer is obvious.” (Knowing Scripture, pp. 11-12)

If in 1 Corinthians 11, God commands the wearing of fabric head coverings in worship and we reject this teaching, we are in sin because we are rejecting the Word of God. If however God didn’t command the wearing of fabric head coverings in worship and we wear one, we might look a little strange but are not in sin because we are not changing God’s Word; we’re simply wearing a style of clothing others choose not to wear. It is the one who rejects God’s Word, rather than the one with what others might consider rather strange fashion taste who has far more to lose. One is in sin; the other is not.


1 Corinthians

1 Corinthians 1: 1-3: 1 Paul called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both their’s and our’s: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

“Guided by the Lord Jesus Christ, through the inspiration of His Holy Spirit, and in anticipation of every possible objection to the teachings in this epistle, the apostle Paul included in his greeting a little phrase not found in any of all his other epistles.
Surely the Lord of past, present, future and eternity knew that the Laodicean spirit of our 20th Century would drive even believers to doubt the importance and relevance of 1st Corinthians especially in the matter of the head covering!
This little phrase alone should have produced immediate, willing and humble obedience towards the teachings in this epistle, as it had done for almost 2000 years, until liberal theology invaded the professing Church, and even influenced New Testament assemblies of believers.
The epistle to the Romans was addressed to the Romans, yet we rightly accept the teachings as binding on and applicable to all believers of all generations in all places.”

Nothing can be clearer than that this epistle was not restricted or confined to Corinthian believers, but was meant to be read, acted upon, obeyed, followed and practised by every believer in every assembly in every place in the whole of the Church period. No one is excepted or exempted. Time has no bearing on the truths contained in this epistle, whether saints lived in the 1st Century or the 20th Century. All assemblies during the Church age are to heed the inspired instruction in the epistle, and the Lord Who caused it to be written brooks no excuses for not heeding His teachings.
To make it impossible for anyone to doubt, question or reject the universality of its application, that all believers of all periods of Church history should obey Paul’s instruction in 1st Corinthians, Paul emphatically, unequivocally further states, towards the end of his epistle (1 Cor 14: 37) “the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord”.

https://web.archive.org/web/20030625162126/www.mtaonline.net/~psmith/user/Headcovering/WomansHeadCoverings.htm

1 Corinthians 11: 1-16

11 Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ.

2 Now I praise you because you remember me in everything and hold firmly to the traditions, just as I handed them down to you. But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ. Every man who has something on his head while praying or prophesying disgraces his head. But every woman who has her head uncovered while praying or prophesying disgraces her head, for it is one and the same as the woman whose head is shaved. For if a woman does not cover her head, have her also cut her hair off; however, if it is disgraceful for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, have her cover her head. For a man should not have his head covered, since he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man. For man does not originate from woman, but woman from man; for indeed man was not created for the woman’s sake, but woman for the man’s sake. 10 Therefore the woman should have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels. 11 However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman. 12 For as the woman originated from the man, so also the man has his birth through the woman; and all things originate from God. 13 Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered? 14 Does even nature itself not teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him, 15 but if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her? For her hair is given to her as a covering. 16 But if anyone is inclined to be contentious, we have no such practice, nor have the churches of God.

In 1 Corinthians 1: 3, the Apostle Paul addresses to “all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord” and in 1 Corinthians 11: 1 he calls on believers to “Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ.” Thus the idea is doubly presented that this letter was not for a particular time or place but for all who desire to obey Christ, in all places and times, as Paul did. But Paul goes even further.
In 1 Corinthians 14: 37 emphatically states that “the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord”. Thus Paul makes it impossible to misunderstand for those who desire to have understanding: What he has written, he has written as a commandment of the Lord. This is applicable to the entirety of the letter to the Corinthians.

In 1 Corinthians 11: 2-16, Paul called his teaching on head covers part of he ordinances that he had delivered to the Corinthians. The word under consideration is ordinances–παράδοσις, εως, ἡ or paradosis. It means a handing down or over, a tradition, a teaching, particularly of doctrine by a teacher or other authority to those who were under him.

“That phrase “the traditions as I delivered them to you” uses the Greek word paradosis, which means “a handing down, transmission” (Liddel & Scott), “a handing down or over, a tradition.” (NAS Greek) The word occurs twice in that phrase and could be rendered “the things handed down, I handed down to you.” Scripture knows of only two types of traditions handed down. It forbids any subjection for a moment to the “traditions of men” (Matt. 15:1-9; Mark 7:1-13; Col. 2:8), but it treats as infallible and binding the traditions handed down from the apostles (2 Thes. 2:15; 3:6).” via Glory and Coverings by Phillip Kayser

In 1 Corinthians 11: 2-16, Paul says that what he is teaching is part of the ordinances that he had delivered to the Corinthians. The word under consideration is ordinances–παράδοσις, εως, ἡ or paradosis. It means a handing down or over, a tradition, a teaching, particularly of doctrine by a teacher or other authority to those who were under him. 

In the New Testament, an ordinance is considered binding. It is used in other places in the New Testament concerning apostolic commands. 1 Thessalonians 2: 15 and 1 Thessalonians 3: 6 uses this exact word; it is also used in various other places in the New Testament.

Charles Hodge says of paradosis, “In reference to the rule of faith, it is never used in the New Testament except for the immediate instruction of inspired men.” The traditions of the apostles are nothing less than the Word of God, inspired by the Holy Spirit. Thus the meaning contained within this word is that of a command. So Paul is expounding upon the commands he has delivered to the Corinthians and correcting their misunderstanding and disobedience of the commands.

Paul’s teachings on head covers are both to men and women. Paul taught that all men, young or old, married or single, are to have short hair (verse 14) and their heads are not to be covered during worship (verse 4). Whereas women, all women, young or old, married or single, are commanded to have long hair for it is given for a woman’s glory (verse 15) and to be covered (the word used here is for a fabric covering draped over her head) during the worship assembly (verses 5, 6, and 13). (The word for woman in this passage has no article, indicating females in general- via Phillip Kayser.)

The section on head coverings isn’t where it is by accident; it is in a section dealing with public worship. The next section Paul write about the Lord’s Supper.

Paul uses several arguments in 1 Corinthians 11 when setting forth God’s command concerning head coverings. The Apostle argues for head covers based on 1) creation order, 2) because of the angels, 3) nature, and 4) church practice. Not once does he appeal to local custom (though that is often the fall back argument for the church today, false though it is). He doesn’t say it is cultural, temporary, of no importance, or just for the Corinthians. Rather, as just noted, it is for “all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord” who love God and desire to “Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ.”

“What the “culture bound” advocates are ironically saying is that Paul was mandating that the Corinthian Christians subject their consciences to the traditions of men, despite the fact that Paul had earlier said, “that you may learn in us not to think beyond what is written” (4:6). Paul would never have imposed man-made traditions in the language of ethics (“ought not” [v. 7], “ought” [v. 10], “imitate Christ” [v. 1], etc.). This would violate Christ’s maxim: “in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men” (Matt. 15:9). Either it is a commandment of men (culture) or a commandment of God.”

Geneva Notes on the Bible: “Against those who are stubbornly contentious we have to oppose this, that the churches of God are not contentious(Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:16).”

In 1 Corinthians 11: 2-16, did Paul write 14 verses instructing the church in the teaching women covering and men uncovering and then just say “never mind”? It certainly makes no sense that an Apostle would so contradict himself in the sacred Word. But we are often told that in verse 16, Paul is negating the need for women to cover in worship. But he isn’t. That would mean he was double minded, something that Scripture condemns. Paul is not saying suit yourself or don’t bother with it if you don’t want to; rather ,he is saying that all churches in Christendom are following this teaching so if you are contentious and trying to say “no” to it, then you are standing against a direct command and doing that which no one else in Christianity, no other churches, were doing. You are on your own in denying the Apostolic command.


Tanner Cartwright

 My position on head coverings(longform)

Shortly after marriage me and my wife came to the conclusion that head coverings were a command from scripture and that men should not cover their heads in worship and the wife should cover her head.

I went to our pastor at the time(a SBC pastor with 40 years in the ministry) and he told me he had never looked into it.

I asked another brother I respected and all he told me was I needed to “check my heart” because we all know how the desire to obey scripture can be a bad thing(sarcasm and thanks to Tim Keller)

So after all that help I just went to the word and spent a lot of time in 1 Corinthians 11 and over the years as I’ve talked to different brothers, read from old dead men, studied church history and studied the text countless times and so here’s a short polemic on the common objections to head coverings in our day.

-Its Cultural:

If you ever bring up head coverings in any group you will hear this…it is by far the most common argument in our day.

Paul gives three reasons for his command.

In verse 7 he says that a man should not cover his head because he is the image and glory of God.

In verse 10 he says that the woman should cover because of the angels(or messengers)

In verse 13-15 he strengthens his argument by pointing to nature.

You will notice that none of these reasons have anything to do with culture but are transcendent.

The glory of God

The oversight of the church

Nature

These are not limited to any time or place but are universal.

If we can brush this commandment aside that easily, we could do away with just about every command in the new testament.

We also have a problem when we say its just cultural and that is that it still symbolizes the same thing today(at least in the church) as it has for more that two thousand years(women wore prayer shawls way before the early church) and we still know that men should uncover their heads in corporate worship.

-The covering Paul is talking about is the woman’s hair:

Proponents of this argument will point to verse 15 where Paul calls the hair “a covering” but it is obvious that there is a distinction between “the covering” needed for corporate worship and her hair as a natural covering.

V. 15 is not a summary but rather an argument from nature.

In V. 14-15 Paul is making an appeal to nature to strengthen his argument…if he wanted to say that a woman should have hair(or long hair) he could have done that easily enough but that’s not what he does.

He points out that even nature shows us women should have long hair because there is a basic reality of a woman needing a covering…which is not the argument he has made in V. 1-13.

Long hair is not a symbol of submission but of natural position according to the text and to draw a straight line from V. 15 backwards is just that, backwards.

If the text is talking about hair/long hair why does Paul say in V. 5 that it is a disgrace for her to be uncovered WHILE praying or prophesying(corporate worship)?

In V. 6 he says that if she will not cover her head she should cut off her hair.

Is he really saying that if she doesn’t have hair/long hair she should cut off her hair/long hair.

Makes absolutely no sense.

The other problem with saying it is referring to long hair is the obvious problem of what is considered too short for a woman and too long for a man?

And how is that to be something that is specifically to be obeyed when praying and prophesying(corporate worship) when long vs short hair is not something that can be obeyed for a specific time but must be an all the time thing.

A plain reading of the text does not lead us to think hair/long hair nor does a careful look.

-Head coverings should be worn by women all the time:

The basis of this argument is to say that we are commanded to pray continually and therefore a woman should cover all the time so she is never praying uncovered.

Two reasons I believe this is wrong.

The context of 1 Corinthians 11 is corporate worship.

The reason, I believe, for saying she should cover when “praying or prophesying” is to point to corporate worship.

Paul says 3 chapters later in Corinthians 14 that women are to be silent in church and in 1 Timothy 2:12 “But I do not allow a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet”

This would exclude prophesying in corporate worship(the context of Cor 11) so what does he mean?

There is one sense in which everyone in the church prays and prophecies and that is corporately.

When the pastor preaches the word(prophecy) there is a sense in which the church as a body is prophesying.

When a man leads the church in prayer it is right to say the whole church is praying.

-Nuance:

I fully recognize this is a difficult topic for many and while I feel very strongly about this, I do not believe it should be a point of division.

Men and women in the same body can differ on this and still fellowship and love one another.

I have never made this a point of division and I don’t intend to going forward

There are those who believe that a covering was cultural and that this command to show submission in the context of worship can be obeyed in some modern contextual way.

There are also those who are fully convinced it is talking about long hair

I disagree and don’t see it but men I respect hold these views.

I also recognize that I am more convinced by the historical record than many and the fact that the vast majority of christian denominations for 2000 years have believed that women should cover in worship carries more weight with me than it will for many.

Whether you agree or disagree with my position we should be gracious to one another and be careful to walk with the body in love and gentleness.

My belief on this topic does not reflect the whole of the leadership at Refchurch.

Love in Christ.


James Kinsella
This conversation has a level of importance to it that most do not understand because of what is on the line:
– Read the text…it is glorious and ignored by most of the church in our day.
– Headship and glory!
And also because of the non-stop attack of our culture AND the cultural church against manhood/womanhood and headship…we must step back and ask…why are we not practicing this tradition of the church as it was practiced around the world since the days of Paul…and are we sure it is not because liberal feminists succeeded to remove this practice from the church (even Wikipedia agrees with this).
And attack on 1 Corinthians 11 is an attack ultimately on the church…and our head…Jesus Christ. May the church in our day return to the Word of God and gladly obey whatever it is the Lord would ask of us…His people…no matter what this world or the worldly church says or does.




Pastor Jerrold H. Lewis, “In the last 100 years, a 2000 year old doctrine, has been all but removed from most Reformed churches, by a single controlling element- culture. The doctrine abandoned was the use of head coverings in public worship.

The fact remains that even 50 years ago, it mattered very little what Church you attended (Baptist, Roman Catholic, Methodist, Anglican, Presbyterian, or Reformed), all women wore a head covering in public worship. Yet today there are hardly any congregations in Western Culture that practice this with any degree of consistency, if they practice it at all. When you ask the question “Why don’t you believe wearing a head covering is biblical?”, you are met with a uniform answer, “Because it was a cultural practice, and our culture no longer requires a head covering.” The question must be answered then, are head coverings cultural, or are they a requirement for corporate worship?”


How are we to determine what, in Scripture, is cultural and what is still for today?


Church history and the covering

For nearly 20 centuries, the church universal was faithful to practice head covering. As we go along, we will look at what some of the church fathers, Reformers, and Puritans had to say about the covering. We’ll also take a look at what men in the last couple of centuries have said.

The Church of England didn’t revoke the canon law that required women cover their heads for Communion until 1942. The practice of head covering is still observed in much of Europe, South America, Africa, and Asia. In the United States, it was the was the practice until mid-to-late 20th century. Why did the practice cease in the United States? In a word: feminism.

Head covering is a symbol of male headship and feminists hate that. Feminists have always seen head covers as “oppression” of women. Because they believed head covers were oppressive and a symbol of male headship (something they despised), feminists fought to get women to forsake the covering and, sadly, they were successful in doing so.

Few women in the Western church still practice head covering. To many, the practice of head covering is an archaic symbol that has no place in our churches today. Some argue that the symbol itself was symbolic and can easily be replaced today by a symbol such as a wedding ring. It is thought by some that the husband is the woman’s covering and by others that a woman’s hair is her covering. These are just some of the arguments that are made by the modern church.

When Satan approached Eve and asked her, “Did God really say?” she couldn’t answer him. She began to doubt and question God. When we question His Word, we are doing the same thing. We must know God’s Word and revere it that it, and not opinion, desires, or culture sways us.

As the women’s movement gained steam, fewer and fewer women wore head coverings. Feminism taught that head coverings were oppressive and old fashioned. As the women rebelled just as Eve did, the men capitulated just as Adam had.

Head coverings it seemed had become something that was just something women did. Few could explain or defend the practice. As the women pushed, the men, either biblically illiterate or confused or unwilling to stand on Scripture, crumbled. As they did, the feminists gained confidence and more power.

When a doctrine is taken for granted, the reasoning behind the Scriptural truth is often no longer emphasized or taught. People just accept it as true without giving thought as to why it is true or how to explain or defend it from Scripture. Then when confronted with the need to explain or defend it, they can’t. This gives the enemy of our souls the opening he needs to attack Scriptural truth. This is what happened to the doctrine of head covering.

Concerning head coverings, when feminists started pushing against the practice few church leaders, husbands, or fathers had any real Scriptural understanding of the reasons for the practice of women wearing them. When the time came to defend Scripture, few men could or, apparently, even had a desire to.

Some men simply lacked the spiritual fortitude to stand against the warring women. Others simply didn’t care. Too many were happy to bring the church into what they saw as modern times. In time, head covering was consigned to the dust bin of church history, and, by the 1970’s, those few who wore them considered to be giving a quaint but unnecessary nod to the past.

Head-covering by women was the norm around the world for most of church history. Pictures taken in the 1950’s at Billy Graham’s crusades show almost all women wearing head coverings of some sort. By the 1970’s that had changed. In a time of growing support for equality, women’s rights, and feminism, the support for the Christlike women who wore head coverings in obedience to their Lord almost completely evaporated.


The Easter bonnet rebellion

In 1969 NOW, the National Organization of Women, organized what they referred to as the “National Unveiling” of women on Easter Sunday. To protest what they saw as oppression and abuse of women by organized religion, they encouraged women all across the United States to send in their head coverings so that they could be burned.

The National Organization for Women, December 1968: “Because the wearing of a head covering by women at religious services is a symbol of subjection with many churches, NOW recommends that all chapters undertake an effort to have all women participate in a “national unveiling” by sending their head coverings to the task force chairman. At the Spring meeting of the task force of women and religion, these veils will be publicly burned to protest the second class status of women in all churches.”

“Mary Ann Lupa, member of the state steering committee of N.O.W. explained that the veiling of women historically symbolizes their subjugation. Dismissing the traditional biblical arguments, she pointed out that authors of scripture spoke from their historical context concluding that women are inferior human beings.

This erroneous view of women is responsible for the subservient role of women in the churches.

Nancy Kosterman said, “Women of all churches will not continue to tolerate second class status. Women are tired of doing all the menial tasks within their churches and having no voice in policies or worship”.

Easter, the season of new life, was chosen a spokeswomen said to dramatize the womens’ rejection of their old position of inferiority in the churches and to testify to their new life of equality.

She added that Saint John’s was an appropriate place for women to declare this new life in response to an incident that occurred last Sunday.

A woman was publicly admonished from the pulpit by the celebrant of the service for the sin of not covering her head. She was told her presence was not wanted if she rejected this symbol of subjection.

N.O.W. urged all women to resolve that as of now to join in this first action of the “National Unveiling” of all women in all churches throughout the nation.

The above document can be found here in full.

Click below to read The Easter Bonnet Rebellion article on The Ninevite.


The above was posted by The Joyful Patriarchal Wife before her death. She was such a precious sister who was dedicated to teaching biblical truth concerning womanhood. She is missed. Soli Deo Gloria!


Why have we changed our views on head covers?

R.C. Sproul referred to himself as a die hard concerning the necessity of women wearing headcovers. He is quoted as having said, 

“The wearing of fabric headcoverings in worship was universally the practice of Christian women until the twentieth century. What happened? Did we suddenly find some biblical truth to which the saints for thousands of years were blind? Or were our biblical views of women gradually eroded by the modern feminist movement that has infiltrated the Church of Jesus Christ which is “the pillar and ground of the truth.

It disturbs me that the custom or the tradition of the woman covering her head in American did not pass away until we saw a cultural revolt against the authority of the husband over the wife not just in the home or in the church but in the whole of culture and it frightens me that we’re taking our cue not from the Scriptures but from the culture or the fashions where we live.”


God’s Word doesn’t change

Bartel Elshout

There are a number of Reformed denominations in North America and the Netherlands who now endorse women in church offices. The disturbing fact is that it appears that in some cases the pathway toward this unscriptural position began with the rejection of the teaching of 1 Corinthians 11:1-16 regarding the divinely mandated use of the woman’s head-covering in public worship. Once the symbol of the head-covering was rejected (along with all of its theological implications), a first step was taken that could ultimately lead toward teaching that women should also be permitted to hold positions of authority in the church as office-bearers.

Bob Deffinbaugh

“The solution to legalism is to continue to obey the rules, to keep God’s commands, but to always do so in the light of the principles which underlie them. Women should cover their heads because Paul commands them to, and because of the principles of headship and of God’s sovereign distinctions. Legalism is keeping the rules for the rules’ sake. Christian liberty is keeping the rules for God’s sake, and with a heart and mind which seeks most of all to be pleasing to Him by obeying His commandments.”

Charles Spurgeon

“We shall not adjust our Bible to the age; but before we have done with it, by God’s grace, we shall adjust the age to the Bible.” (“The Preacher’s Power, and the Conditions of Obtaining it”, in An All-round Ministry, p. 318.).

John Calvin

“We know how to distinguish contentious persons. A contentious person is one who does not care what becomes of the truth. Of this description are all who, without any necessity, abolish good and useful customs, raise disputes respecting matters that are not doubtful, and who do not yield to reasonings.”

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

“The root trouble, even among good Evangelicals, is our failure to heed the plain teaching of Scripture. We accept what Scripture teaches as far as our doctrine is concerned; but when it comes to practice, we very often fail to take the Scriptures as our only guide. When we come to the practical side we employ human tests instead of scriptural ones. Instead of taking the plain teaching of the Bible, we argue with it.”

Scottish Divine David Dickson

“But if any man seem”. A contentious person is one whose humor inclines him to stir up disputes, and does not care what becomes of the truth. Of this description are all who, without any necessity, abolish good and useful customs — raise disputes respecting matters that are not doubtful — who do not yield to reasonings — who cannot endure that any one should be above them… For we must not always reckon as contentious the man who does not acquiesce in our decisions, or who ventures to contradict us; but when temper and obstinacy show themselves, let us then say with Paul, that contentions are at variance with the custom of the Church” (Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:16).


Why I choose to cover in worship

My daughter and I wear headcoverings in corporate worship because when confronted with the question, Are head covers biblical?, we turned to Scripture to see what God said. My daughters and I read books on the practice of Christian head covering. We studied the Scriptural references to headcovers. We studied the creation order and how that related to 1 Corinthians 11. After much digging, study, and prayer, we had to answer, yes, they are a biblical command and not a cultural mandate as I had been taught. Rather, since the command is tied to creation order, it is a lasting command.

Men are to uncover during worship (something that would have been shocking to Paul’s audience) and women are to cover during corporate worship (something that is shocking to us today). I also practice head covering at a wedding, funeral, Bible study, or anywhere where God’s Word is being proclaimed.


Study to show thyself approved

Scripture tells us to be like the Bereans who examined Scripture daily to make sure that what they were being taught was actually what God’s Word said (Acts 17: 11). In 2 Timothy 2: 15 God commands us to “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a worker who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.” This includes the question of “are head coverings biblical?”

What follows is an examination of head coverings for women, especially in corporate worship, (and that men should remain uncovered during worship) through the use of Scripture, quotes, sermons, books, and articles by godly men from ancient times to modern.

At the bottom of the page, you can find links to shops where you can purchase headcoverings.

Soli Deo Gloria!


Elizabeth Cady Stanton (an atheist, early feminist, and suffragette), writing in 1899, said, “A veil on the head was a token of respect for superiors; hence for a woman to lay aside her veil was to affect authority over the man…The same customs prevail and are enforced by the Church, as of vital consequence; their non-observance so irreligious that it would exclude a woman from the church. It is not mere social fashion that allows men to sit in church with their heads uncovered and women with theirs covered, but a requirement of canon law of vital significance” (The Woman’s Bible, Seattle, WA: Coalition Task Force on Women and Religion, reprinted 1979, p. 157).


Sermons on headcoverings

Misconceptions Regarding Headcoverings by Dr. Richard Bacon

Headcovering #1 by Dr. Michael Barrett

Headcovering #2, 3 by Dr. Michael Barrett

Headcovering #4 by Dr. Michael Barrett

The Headcovering by Gavin Beers

Headcovering: Is it for today? (Lecture) by Steve Bradley

The Practice of Headcoverings in the New Testament Church by William O. Einwechter

Headcoverings: The Foundation by William Einwechter

Headcoverings: The Rationale by William Einwechter

Headcoverings: The Instruction by William Einwechter

The head of man and woman by J. Glenn Ferrell

The Biblical Basis for Headcoverings by Stephen Hamilton

The Head Covering- Is the woman’s covering her long hair? by Rev. James C. Gallagher

The Head Covering- Is the woman’s covering her long hair? by Rev. James C. Gallagher

Headcovering and the Young Christian by Philip Gardiner

Head Covering – An Introduction by Rev. John Greer

Head Covering – Your Questions Answered by Rev. John Greer

Head Covering in Public Worship by Rev. John Greer

Is Hair the Head Covering? by Rev. John Greer

Head Coverings by Joe Hamm

Headship and headcovering by Chalan Hetherington

Head Coverings by Michael Ives

Headship and Its Symbols by William Klock

Head Coverings – History, Context, and Exegesis by Dr. Carlton C. McLeod

1 Corinthians 11: Head Coverings, Part One Orchard Hills Bible Church

1 Corinthians 11: Head Coverings, Part Two, Orchard Hills Bible Church

The Headcovering by Michael Spangler

Covering and uncovering the head by Alex Strauch

Worship and the Head Covering by Rev. Jonathan Mattull

Head Coverings: Counter-Cultural Christianity by George Mayes

The Headcovering by Rev. Colin Mercer

Mark Minnick on 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 (Sermon Series)

What? Me? Wear a Hat? by David Mook

The head covering – Is it really necessary? by Timothy Nelson

Is Hair Really the Covering for Worship? by Rev. Timothy Nelson

Head covering, 3 part series Mayport Beach Baptist Chapel by Timothy Nelson

Head Coverings in Worship, 3 sermon series by Todd Ruddell Christ Covenant Reformed Presbyterian

Headship and Headcoverings series by Brian Schwertley

Yes. Head Coverings by Nikolaos Seferiadis 

Ancient Head Coverings in Modern Worship, part 1 by Jason Upchurch

Ancient Head Coverings in Modern Worship, part 2 by Jason Upchurch

Also, both of the Upchurch sermons on Redeemer Bible Church website (scroll down to October, 2021)

Milton Vincent on 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 (Sermon Series)

Head Coverings by Jim Wood


Websites, Blogs, and Podcasts addressing head coverings

Are Head Coverings Really for Today? by Greg Gordon

Given Her for a Covering: An exposition of 1 Corinthians 11:15 By Mike Atnip

Chrysostom, Homily XXVI on 1 Corinthians 11.—On the Veiling of Women

The Customary Practice of Headcoverings

Early Christian Dictionary: The Doctrine and Practice of the Early Christians: Veil

Appendix A: How Did the Early Church Interpret Paul?

Appendix B: “Five Myths About Corinthian Headwear” Adapted from Bruce Terry

Hair or Veil?

Head Coverings and Decorum in Worship: A letter by Professor John Murray

Headcovering by the Reformed Presbyterian Church

Head Coverings in Public Worship by Brian Schwertley

Headcoverings in Scripture by Greg Price

Head Coverings in Worship?

Head-covering for Women Written By : Zac Poonen

Head coverings #1: the logic of glory and veiling by Bronn Tennant 

Head Covering: Revisited Women of the Table

Head Covering Seminar

Headcovering Customs of the Ancient World: An Illustrated Survey, by Michael Marlowe

History of the Early Church: The Head Covering or Prayer Veil

How The Church Instructs The Angels

Humiliating head coverings by Bronn Tennant

Is Headcovering Biblical? by David Silversides

No Such Custom: AN EXPOSITION OF I CORINTHIANS 11:2-16 by Bruce Terry

No Such Custom, part 1 by Pastor Jerrold H. Lewis

No Such Custom, part 2 by Pastor Jerrold H. Lewis

Should women wear head coverings? by Bronn Tennant

Should Christian Women Wear A Head Covering While Praying or Prophesying? by Dale Partridge

THE CUSTOMARY PRACTICE OF HEADCOVERINGS: AN EXEGETICAL/HISTORICAL STUDY OF 1 CORINTHIANS 11:2-16 PRESENTED IN A SERIES OF LETTERS by Rev. Greg L. Price

The Head Covering or Prayer Veil

The Woman’s Headcovering by Michael Marlowe

Thoroughly Equipped: Wrestling with Head Coverings (podcast)

To Cover or Not to Cover? by Dr. R.C. Sproul

VEIL: Early Christian Commentary

Veiled in the assembly

The Wearing of Head Coverings by Women in the Worship Services by Bartel Elshout

What Did Linus & the Apostle Peter Believe About Head Covering?

What Does Church History Teach on Head Coverings? by Greg Price

Where are head coverings to be practiced?

Why Men Should Not Cover Their Heads in Public Worship or The Glory of God Unveiled in the Assembly of God’s People

A WOMAN’S HEAD IN PUBLIC WORSHIP: A PAMPHLET TO ANSWER THE QUESTION
“WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT HEADCOVERING FOR WOMEN IN PUBLIC WORSHIP?”
1 CORINTHIANS 11:2-16

Women’s Head Coverings & The Glory of God By Dr Peter H.L.Wee


Are head coverings biblical? Books on 1 Corinthians 11

If you follow the link and purchase a book from Amazon, I will receive a small commission at no added expense to you.

A Cover for Glory: A Biblical Defense for Headcoverings by Dale Partridge

Headcovering Throughout Christian History: The Church’s Response to 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 (Covered Glory) by David Phillips

A Return to Head Covering: A Needed Symbol in the Contemporary Church by Carlton C McLeod

The Head Covering: What Saith the Scriptures? Timothy Nelson

Head Covering: A Forgotten Christian Practice for Modern Times by Jeremy Gardiner

Glories Seen and Unseen by Warren Hederson

Covered Glory: 1 Corinthians 11 & The Christian Use of Headcoverings by David Phillips

Head Covering for Public Worship: An Exposition of 1 Corinthians 11: 2-16 by Michael P. V. Barrett (free download)

The Headcovering in Worship by David J. Lipsy (free download)

Headcovering and Lord’s Supper

Glory and Coverings: A Study of 1 Corinthians 11:1-16 by Phillip Kayser, Ph.D.

Women’s Head Coverings & The Glory of God By Dr Peter H.L.Wee


Are head coverings biblical? What was the predominate view throughout church history?

Henry Alford (1810-1871)

“1 Corinthians 11:2-16 – The law of subjection of the woman to the man (vv. 2-12), and the natural decency itself (vv. 13-16), teach that women should be veiled in public religious assemblies.
The women overstepped the bounds of their sex, in coming forward to pray and to prophesy in the assembled church with uncovered heads. Both of these the Apostle disapproved, as well as their coming forward to pray and prophesy, as their removing the veil. Here, however, he blames the latter practice only, and reserves the former till chapter 14:34.”
(Alford’s Greek New Testament, Grand Rapids,MI: Guardian Press, 1976, pp. 562f.)

“The woman ought to have power (the sign of power or subjection; shewn by the context to mean a veil.”

William Arndt and F. Wilbur Gingrich

(The classic work, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, was published in 1957)

Under the Greek verb, katakalupto, the following translation is given for 1 Corinthians 11:6a: “cover oneself [with GLP] a veil.” 

Augustine

“It is not becoming even in married women to uncover their hair, since the apostle commands women to keep their heads covered.” ~Augustine, Letter CCXL

John Bunyan (1628-1688)

“For this cause ought the woman to have power”, that is a covering, “on her head, because of the angels” 1 Corinthians 11:10…Methinks, holy and beloved sisters, you should be content to wear this power or badge…”

John Calvin (1509-1564)

John Calvin, from his three sermons from 1 Corinthians 11:2-16: “So if women are thus permitted to have their heads uncovered and to show their hair, they will eventually be allowed to expose their entire breasts, and they will come to make their exhibitions as if it were a tavern show; they will become so brazen that modesty and shame will be no more; in short they will forget the duty of nature. . . . So, when it is permissible for the women to uncover their heads, one will say, ‘Well, what harm in uncovering the stomach  also?’ And then after that one will plead [for] something else: ‘Now if the women go bareheaded, why not also [bare] this and [bare] that?’ Then the men, for their part, will break loose too. In short, there will be no decency left, unless people contain themselves and respect what is proper and fitting, so as not to go headlong overboard.”

b. “When he says ‘her hair is for a covering [1 Corinthians 11:15 GLP],’ he does not mean that as long as a woman has hair, that should be enough for her. He rather teaches that our Lord is giving a directive that He desires to have observed and maintained. If a woman has long hair, this is equivalent to saying to her, ‘Use your head covering, use your hat, use your hood; do not expose yourself in that way!”

 “But if any man seem”. A contentious person is one whose humor inclines him to stir up disputes, and does not care what becomes of the truth. Of this description are all who, without any necessity, abolish good and useful customs — raise disputes respecting matters that are not doubtful — who do not yield to reasonings — who cannot endure that any one should be above them… For we must not always reckon as contentious the man who does not acquiesce in our decisions, or who ventures to contradict us; but when temper and obstinacy show themselves, let us then say with Paul, that contentions are at variance with the custom of the Church” (Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:16).

“So if women are thus permitted to have their heads uncovered and to show their hair, they will eventually be allowed to expose their entire breasts, and they will come to make their exhibitions as if it were a tavern show; they will become so brazen that modesty and shame will be no more; in short they will forget the duty of nature…Further, we know that the world takes everything to its own advantage. So, if one has liberty in lesser things, why not do the same with this the same way as with that? And in making such comparisons they will make such a mess that there will be utter chaos. So, when it is permissible for the women to uncover their heads, one will say, `Well, what harm in uncovering the stomach also?’ And then after that one will plead for something else; `Now if the women go bareheaded, why not also bare this and bare that?’ Then the men, for their part, will break loose too. In short, there will be no decency left, unless people contain themselves and respect what is proper and fitting, so as not to go headlong overboard”

“Every man praying Here there are two propositions. The first relates to the man, the other to the woman He says that the man commits an offense against Christ his head, if he prays or prophesies with his head covered. Why so? Because he is subject to Christ, with this understanding, that he is to hold the first place in the government of the house — for the father of the family is like a king in his own house. Hence the glory of God shines forth in him, in consequence of the authority with which he is invested. If he covers his head, he lets himself down from that preeminence which God had assigned to him, so as to be in subjection. Thus the honor of Christ is infringed upon.”

“By this he gathers that if men do either pray or preach in public assemblies having their heads covered (which was then a sign of subjection), they robbed themselves of their dignity, against God’s ordinance.” So to do so, that is, to be covered, robbed the man of the blessing of God’s ordinance, which was to be uncovered. Therefore for Corinth to submit to the cultural ellement by wearing a head covering was to go against the injunction Paul was now giving. Thus it was corrective. IOW, “Don’t put something on your head, even if it is the practice of the day, as it robs you of your dignaty according to the Lord”. Then the second part of the quote becomes clear, “It appears, that this was a political law serving only for the circumstance of the time that Paul lived in, by this reason, because in these our days for a man to speak bareheaded in an assembly is a sign of subjection.” The cultural ellement, Paul is saying, needs to be replaced by the ordinance now delivered. The Genevan authors obeyed this injunction and preached uncovered, as do we.

Early Church Father Chrysostom (340-407 A.D.)

(Chrysostom was the great preacher of Antioch, from Homily XXVI On the Veiling of Women)

Chrysostom identifies the problem Paul addresses in 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 as “Their women used to pray and prophesy unveiled and with their head bare.”

Especially to the point of a woman needing a separate head covering other  than her long hair (cf. 1Co 11:15) is the following remark: “‘And if it be given her for a covering,’ say you, ‘wherefore need she add another covering?’ That not nature only, but also her own will may have part in her acknowledgment of subjection. For that thou oughtest to be covered nature herself by anticipation enacted a law. Add now, I pray, thine own part also, that thou mayest not seem to subvert the very laws of nature; a proof of most insolent rashness, to buffet not only with us, but with nature also.”

“Thou seest that some obeyed, whom he praises; and others disobeyed, whom he corrects by what comes afterwards, saying, “Now if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom.” (ver. 16.) For if after some had done well but others disobeyed, he had included all in his accusation, he would both have made the one sort bolder, and have caused the others to become more remiss.”

“It is then contentiousness to oppose these things, and not any exercise of reason. Notwithstanding, even thus it is a measured sort of rebuke which he adopts, to fill them the more with self-reproach; which in truth rendered his saying the more severe. “For we,” saith he, “have no such custom,” so as to contend and to strive and to oppose ourselves. And he stopped not even here, but also added, “neither the Churches of God;” signifying that they resist and oppose themselves to the whole world by not yielding.”

Clement of Alexandria, 190 A.D.

“Let the woman observe this, further. Let her be entirely covered, unless she happens to be at home. For that style of dress is grave, and protects from being gazed at. And she will never fall, who puts before her eyes modesty, and her shawl; nor will she invite another to fall into sin by uncovering her face. For this is the wish of the Word, since it is becoming for her to pray veiled.” [Clement, The Instructor 3.12]

John Cotton (1585-1652)

“How is the public worship of God to be ordered and administered in the church? All the members of the church being met together as one man (i) in the sight of God (ii) are to join together in holy duties with one accord (iii) the men with their heads uncovered, the women covered.”

“For a woman to cover her head in time of public prayer, or prophesying, and for a man to uncover his head, the Apostle warranteth from both the light of nature, and the custome of the churches, 1 Cor. 11:4 to 16.”

Robert D. Culver

(Contributed “A Traditional View” to Women in Ministry Four Views which was published in 1989)
“God distinguishes sharply between the sexes as to appearance and activity in formal Christian assemblies. A man’s hair is to be short and his head uncovered by hat or shawl, while a woman’s hair is to be uncut and, in visible recognition of submission to God’s order, she is to wear an additional head covering in order to veil, not her face (as in Muslim practice), but some of the rest of her head.”

Robert L. Dabney (1820-1898)

Let us now look at these laws themselves; we shall find them peculiarly, even surprisingly, explicit. First, we have 1 Cor. 11:3–16, where the apostle discusses the relation and deportment of the sexes in the public Christian assemblages; and he assures the Corinthians, verses 2 and 16, that the rules he here announces were universally accepted by all the churches. The reader will not be wearied by details of exposition; a careful reading of the passage will give to him the best evidence for our interpretation, in its complete coherence and consistency.”

“Two principles, then, are laid down: first, verse 4, that the man should preach (or pray) in public with head uncovered, because he then stands forth as God’s herald and representative; and to assume at that time the emblem of subordination, a covered head, is a dishonor to the office and the God it represents; secondly, verses 5, 13, that, on the contrary, for a woman to appear or to perform any public religious function in the Christian assembly, unveiled, is a glaring impropriety, because it is contrary to the subordination of the position assigned her by her Maker, and to the modesty and reserve suitable to her sex; and even nature settles the point by giving her her long hair as her natural veil. Even as good taste and a natural sense of propriety would protest against a woman’s going in public shorn of that beautiful badge and adornment of her sex, like a rough soldier or a laborer, even so clearly does nature herself sustain God’s law in requiring the woman to appear always modestly covered in the sanctuary. The holy angels who are present as invisible spectators, hovering over the Christian assemblies, would be shocked by seeing women professing godliness publicly throw off this appropriate badge of their position (verse 10). The woman, then, has a right to the privileges of public worship and the sacraments; she may join audibly in the praises and prayers of the public assembly, where the usages of the body encourage responsive prayer; but she must always do this veiled or covered.”

The apostle does not in this chapter pause to draw the deduction, that if every public herald of God must be unveiled, and the woman must never be unveiled in public, then she can never be a public herald. But let us wait. He has not done with these questions of order in public worship; he steadily continues the discussion of them through the fourteenth chapter, and he there at length reaches the conclusion he had been preparing, and in verses 34, 35, expressly prohibits women to preach publicly. “Let your women keep silence in the churches, for it is not permitted to them to speak” (in that public place), “but to be in subordination, as also the law saith. And if they wish to learn something”—about some doctrine which they there hear discussed but do not comprehend—“let them ask their own husbands at home, for it is disgraceful for women to speak in church.” And in verse 37 he shuts up the whole discussion by declaring that if anybody pretends to have the Spirit, or the inspiration of prophecy, so as to be entitled to contest Paul’s rules, the rules are the commandments of the Lord (Christ), not Paul’s mere personal conclusions, so that to contest them on such pretensions of spiritual impulse is inevitably wrong and presumptuous. For the immutable Lord does not legislate in contradictory ways.

Thus he who stands up in public as the herald and representative of heaven’s King must stand with uncovered head; the honour of the Sovereign for whom he speaks demands this. But no woman can present herself in public with uncovered head without sinning against nature and her sex. Hence no woman can be a public herald of Christ.”

H.E. Dana and Julius R. Mantey

(A Manual Grammar of the Greek New Testament was published in 1955)

a. These noted Greek grammarians translate a portion of 1 Corinthians 11:5 as follows: “Prophesying with the head unveiled.”

b. Again they translate 1 Corinthians 11:6,7 consistently with verse 5 above: “But if it is a shame to a woman to be shorn, let her be veiled. Now (gar) a man ought not to have his head veiled, since he is the image and glory of God.”

Scottish Divine David Dickson

“If any perhaps should not bee moved by these Arguments, but should contend, the Apostle opposeth to their contentious Apologies, the received and established custome of the Jews, and the rest of the Churches: Other Churches have no such custome, that women should bee present at publick assemblies, with their heads uncovered, and the man with his head covered: Therefore your custome not agreeing with decency, either according to natural use, or of the Churches, is altogether unseemly” (David Dickson’s Commentaries on the Epistles. Printed 1659. Chapter 11, Seventh Article Concerning Order and Decency).

James Durham

“It (the veil) hath a threefold use, 1) For decoration, as in Isaiah 3:23. 2) For a sign of modesty, pleaded for by the Apostle, 1Cor.11:6. 3) And mainly a sign of women’s subjection to their own husbands…” (Song of Solomon Commentary). ~James Durham (1622-1658)

Bartel Elshout

“Paul reinforces this argument in verse 7 when he emphasizes that the man’s head may not be covered since he is ‘the image and glory of God’; that is, he is the divinely appointed representative and bearer of authority in the church. Since the woman is the glory of the man, that glory must be veiled, so that only God’s glory be visible in His house. Since that glory is symbolized by her long hair (v15), this glory must be veiled or covered in public worship. In public worship only God’s glory (reflected in the man) must be visible, and man’s glory (reflected in the woman) must be veiled.”

“The wearing of the female head-covering in public worship visibly reinforces God’s authority structure in the community of the church – a community that recognizes and submits to divine authority. Paul teaches us here that there is a divine hierarchy that must be observed. That hierarchy is as follows: God is the head of Christ, Christ is the head of the man, and the man is the head of the woman. Or to put it this way, the divine order is God, Christ, the man, and then the woman. Paul tells us in verses 3 & 4 that if a man engages in public worship with his physical head covered (his hair is not the issue), he dishonours his spiritual head, Christ. In a sinful way he would be challenging God’s established hierarchy.”

“Paul is emphasizing that the woman’s position in God’s order of things, also in the church, is rooted in the order in which God created the man and the woman – and in His purpose in creating them in this order. God created the woman to be the man’s helpmeet (ie, a help suitable for him) and his ‘completer’. Therefore to allow women to have a position of equality in public worship is contrary to God’s creation ordinance. This challenge to God’s order cannot be permitted in the public activity of the church, for it defies God’s revealed will. Also in 1 Timothy 2:11-14 Paul uses the creation argument to establish this position when he writes, ‘Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression’.”

Andrew R. Fausset

1 Corinthians 11:10-power on her head–the kerchief: French couvre chef, head-covering, the emblem of “power on her head”; the sign of her being under man’s power, and exercising delegated authority under him.” 

Fausset co-authored with David Brown and Robert Jamieson the work, A Commentary, Critical, Experimental, and Practical on the Old and New Testaments. b. “In putting away the veil, she puts away the badge of her subjection to man (which is her true ‘honor’), and of her connection with Christ, man’s Head. Moreover, the head covering was the emblem of maiden modesty before man (Gen. xxiv: 65), and chastity (Gen. xx: 16). By its unlawful excitement in assemblies is avoided, women not attracting attention. Scripture sanctions not the emancipation of woman from subjection: modesty is her true ornament. Man rules; woman ministers: the respective dress should accord. To uncover the head indicated withdrawal from the husband’s power; whence a suspected wife had her head uncovered by the priest (Num. v. 18). . . .…As woman’s hair is given by nature as her covering (v.15), to cut it off like a man would be palpably indecorous, therefore, to put away the head-covering like a man would be similarly indecorous. It is natural to her to have long hair for her covering, to show that she does of her own will that which nature teaches she ought to do, in token of her subjection to man.” ~ Andrew R. Fausset (1821-1910), the English one of the three collaborators of the familiar Commentary of Jamieson, Fausset & Brown

G. G. Findlay (writing in the late 19th century)

“For a woman to discard the veil means to cast off masculine authority, which is a fixed part of the Divine order, like man’s subordination to Christ (3 f.).”37b. In 1 Corinthians 11:4-5 “the high doctrine just asserted applied to the matter of feminine attire. Since man is man has no head but Christ, before whom they worship in common, while woman has man to own for her head, he must not and she must be veiled. The regulation is not limited to those of either sex who ‘pray or prophesy’; but such activity called attention to the apparel, and doubtless it was amongst the more demonstrative women that the impropriety occurred; in the excitement of public speaking the shawl might unconsciously be thrown back.”38c. “And this ‘glory’ [that is the glory of the woman’s long hair in 1 Corinthians 11:15 GLP] is grounded upon her humility: ‘because her hair to serve as a hood (anti perilolaiou) has been given her not as a substitute for [the GLP] head-dress (this would be to stultify Paul’s contention), but in the nature of a covering, thus to match the veil.”

Susan Foh, (Contributed “A Male Leadership View” to Women in Ministry Four Views which was published in 1989)

“The reason for covering heads is directly connected with the head ship of the husband; the head is significant here. To suggest some other cultural expression, such as wedding bands to signify the wife’s submission to her husband, ignores this integral connection. . . . The discontinuance of coverings for women, by most denominations only in this century, was not done for theological reasons but for cultural reasons (hats went out of style and became too expensive).”

John Gill

‘That is, if anyone will not be satisfied with reasons given, for men’s praying and prophesying with their heads uncovered, and women’s praying and prophesying with their heads covered; but will go on to raise objections, and continue carping and cavilling, showing that they contend not for truth, but victory, can they but obtain it any way; for my part, as if the apostle should say, I shall not think it worth my while to continue the dispute any longer; enough has been said to satisfy any wise and good man, anyone that is serious, thoughtful, and modest; and shall only add, we have no such custom, nor the churches of God; meaning, either that men should appear covered, and women uncovered in public service, and which should have some weight with all those that have any regard to churches and their examples; or that men should be indulged in a captious and contentious spirit.”

“We have no such custom, of woman’s praying or prophesying with their heads uncovered, or men’s praying or prophesying with their heads covered; or we have no such custom of contending these little frivolous things” (Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:16).

William Gouge (1575-1653)

“Heading 3. – Of an husbands superioritie over a wife, to be acknowledged by a wife. ….6. The very attire which nature and custome of all times and places have taught women to put on, confirmeth the same: as long haire, vailes, and other coverings over the head: and the former argument doth the Apostle himself use to this very purpose, 1 Cor. 11:7 & c. …’And if it (i.e. the hair – DS) be given her for a covering (vail), say you, wherefore need she add another covering (vail)? That not nature only, but also her own will may have part in her acknowledgement of her subjection’” (Chrysostom). ‘Of Domestical Duties’ by William Gouge, member of the Westminster Assembly.

William Greenhill

“They (the angels) reverence the greatness and majesty of Christ. Though they be high and glorious, yet they see so vast a distance between Christ and themselves, that they cover their faces, Isa. vi. And their bodies, here; they come not into his presence rudely, but with great respect and reverence. As God is to be had in reverence of all that are about him, Psalm 89:7, so Christ is reverenced of all the angels that are about him. Women are to be veiled in the assemblies, because of the angels, 1 Cor. 11:10, to show their reverence and subjection to them being present; and angels are covered, to show their reverence and subjection to Christ. It is an honour to the angels, that in reverence to them the women are to be veiled; and it is a great honour to Christ, that angels reverence and adore him.” Commentary on Ezekiel (Ch. 1:23), by William Greenhill, member of the Westminster Assembly.

Matthew Henry (in his Commentary on the Whole Bible, published in 1706)

a. “The woman, on the other hand, who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head [1 Corinthians 11:5-6GLP], namely, the man, v.3. She appears in the dress of her superior, and throws off the token of her subjection. She might, with equal decency, cut her hair short, or cut it close, which was the custom of the man in that age. This would be in a manner to declare that she was desirous of changing sexes, a manifest affectation of that superiority which God had conferred on the other sex.”

b. “She ought to have power on her head, because of the angels [1 Corinthians 11:10]. Power, that is, a veil, the token, not of her having the power or superiority, but being under the power of her husband, subjected to him, and inferior to the other sex.”

c. “It was the common usage of the churches for women to appear in public assemblies, and join in public worship, veiled; and it was manifestly decent that they should do so. Those must be very contentious indeed who would quarrel with this, or lay it aside” [1 Corinthians 11:16]. Matthew Henry Commentary on the Whole Bible, 1706

Hippolytus, a leader in the church at Rome circa 200A.D.

He compiled a record of the various customs and practices in that church from the generations that preceded him. From his Apostolic Tradition:

“And let all the women have their heads covered with an opaque cloth, not with a veil of thin linen, for this is not a true covering.” (Hippolytus Apostolic Tradition)

Ezekiel Hopkins

“The apostle tells us (1 Corinthians 11:10) that the woman was ‘to have power on her head, because of the angels’. Which place, especially the latter clause of it, is diversely interpreted. But I think all agree in this, that this power which they were to have on their heads was a vail or covering, which at other times, but most especially in the congregation, women ought to wear on their heads…But the men were uncovered in their assemblies, as the apostle tells us (v. 4) to signify that they had nothing over them, but were superior to all visible creatures, and subject only to God.”~ Ezekiel Hopkins (1633-1690)

Irenaeus (120-202 A.D.)

Irenaeus translates 1 Corinthians 11:10 as follows: “A woman ought to have a veil [kalumma] upon her head, because of the angels.”

‘This is significant in that Irenaeus apparently understood the “power” on a woman’s head in 1 Corinthians 11:10 to be a veil of some kind and not a woman’s hair.’ (quoted)

James Angell James

“If the veil were thrown aside, they might as well cut off their flowing hair, one of the woman’s distinctions from the man, the ornament, as well as the peculiarity of the sex. Constantly and completely Christianity is the parent of order, and the enemy of indecorum of every kind.”

“Why were not the women to lay aside their veils? Because it would be forgetting their subordination and dependence, and assuming an equal rank with man. This is the gist of the apostle’s reason. It was not merely indecorous, and contrary to modesty, but it was ambitious, and violating the order of heaven.”

S. Lewis Johnson

“In the final analysis, the hat, or veil, is not the important thing, but the subordination for which it stands. The presence of both is the ideal.” ~S. Lewis Johnson, The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, p. 1248

Benjamen Keach (1640-1704)

“The thing signified is sometimes put for the sign materially…1 Corinthians 11:10, ‘A woman ought to have power on her head,’ that is a garment signifying that she was under the power of her husband.”

John Knox (1505-1572)

“First, I say, the woman in her greatest perfection was made to serve and obey man, not to rule and command him. As saint Paule doth reason in these wordes: ‘Man is not of the woman, but the woman of the man. And man was created for the cause of the woman, but the woman for the cause of man; and therfore oght the woman to have a power upon her head,’ (that is, a coverture in signe of subjection).”

Knox quotes Chrysostom with wholehearted approval: “‘Even so, (saith he) oght man and woman to appeare before God, bearing the ensignes of the condition whiche they have received of him. Man hath received a certain glorie and dignitie above the woman; and therfore oght he to appeare before his high Majestie bearing the signe of his honour, havinge no coverture upon his heade, to witnesse that in earth man hath no head.’ Beware Chrysostome what thou saist! thou shalt be reputed a traytor if Englishe men heare thee, for they must have my Sovereine Lady and Maistresse [Queen Elizabeth–GLP]; and Scotland hath dronken also the enchantment and venom of Circes [the enchantress represented by Homer as turning the companions of Odysseus into swine by means of a magic drink–GLP], let it be so to their owne shame and confusion. He procedeth in these wordes, ‘But woman oght to be covered, to witnesse that in earth she had a head, that is man.’ Trewe it is, Chrysostome, woman is covered in both realmes, but it is not with the signe of subjection, but it is with the signe of superioritie, to witte, with the royal crowne.”

John Lightfoot

“Therefore the Apostle requires the vailing of women in Religious worship, by the same notion and reason, as men veiled themselves, namely for reverence towards God. But certainly it may be required, whether he so much urgeth the vailing of women, as reproves the vailing of men. However, by this most fit argument, he well chastiseth the contrary custom, and foolishness of the men: as though he had said, do ye not consider, that the man is doxa theou the glory of God, but the woman is only doxa andros, the glory of the man; that the woman was made for man; that man is the head of the woman: and how ridiculous is it, that men should use a vail, when they pray, out of reverence and shame before God, and women not use it, whose glory is less?”~ Commentary on First Corinthians (ch. 11:5), by John Lightfoot, member of the Westminster Assembly.

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

“But thus, you see, we argue with Scripture. Instead of taking its plain teaching, we say that times have changed—when it suits our thesis we say it is no longer relevant…The apostle tells them that that’s quite wrong; it’s not only wrong because a woman should have her head covered to show that she is under the authority of the man, but in addition to that he says that she should be covered because of the presence of the angels.”

Benjamin Keach (1640-1704)

“The thing signified is sometimes put for the sign materially…1 Corinthians 11:10, ‘A woman ought to have power on her head,’ that is a garment signifying that she was under the power of her husband.”

“The thing signified is sometimes put for the sign materially… 1Cor.11:10, ‘A woman ought to have power on her head,’ that is a garment signifying that she was under the power of her husband.”

Ligonier Ministries (1996)

“Our actions must conform to the principles that God has established…Do you disregard the exterior aspects of religion, saying the heart is all that matters? If so, confess your pride before God today.
Whenever we have a lesson from both the Scriptures and from nature, we are doubly bound to obey. We also must recognize that it is a rule rooted in nature, not custom.”

“If it is shameful for a woman to have her head shaved, then she must realize that it is just as shameful for her to enter public worship with her head uncovered. We must not confuse Paul’s use of hair as ‘nature’s covering’ and the covering he is exhorting women to wear in public worship.

“Nowhere does (Paul) give cultural reasons for his teaching, i.e. abusive practices of a pagan society that placed prostitutes with shorn heads in the temple. Paul points back to God’s established order in nature. Whenever a teaching in Scripture refers to ‘creation ordinances’, that teaching is binding for all cultures in all ages…”

“The ‘rules of decorum’…regarding the worship of God are established by God Himself not by the whims of culture. It is proper for a woman to have a symbol of authority on her head…The necessity of the symbol remains fixed even as the authority of the man remains fixed.” (From ‘Table Talk’ Devotional Guide for June 17-24, 1996, pp. 36-43 – quoted by Sanseri op. cit. pp. 278f.)

Christopher Love

“Eighth, the angels are present with us, beholding us in our church assemblies when we come to worship before God. When you are in the worship and service of God, the angels are with you, beholding you, though you see them not. This is hinted at in 1 Cor. 11:10 ‘For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head, because of the angels.” Some refer these words to ministers, who are elsewhere called angels, but we may understand it of the angels themselves because they delight in the things of the gospel. Here the apostle speaks of women not coming into church without covering. Why? Because of the angels, not the ministers. It is meant of the angels of heaven, and therein the women are to take heed how they come into the church, because the angels are spectators and behold how you behave yourselves, they being fellow-worshippers of God with you in church assemblies. And this should make you take heed of your carriage; for although they do not know your hearts, yet they behold your carriage as you come into the presence of God.” A Treatise of the Angels by Christopher Love

Thomas Manton

“In the assembly you meet with angels and devils; angels observe your garb and carriage and devils tempt you. Therefore, be covered because of the angels. The practice of women (who come hither with a shameless impudence into the presence of God, men and angels) neither suits with modesty nor conveniency…(Such boldness) feeds your own pride, and provokes …others of your rank to imitate your vanity. Now we should rather please God than men; better never please men than offend God” Sermons on Titus 2:11-14, Complete Works, vol. 16, p. 138 of Thomas Manton

Peter Martyr (1500-1562)

“A woman ought seeing her hair is given her of God, to follow this his institution, and to imitate her Maker, and cover her head; which if she will not do, as much as is in her, she throws off the natural veil”.

Dr. Carlton C. McLeod

“When we are faced with a counter-cultural passage, we are typically quick to say, “It no longer applies for the sake of cultural norms”

“Not coincidentally, the widespread jettisoning of the practice of headcovering can be traced to the mid-20th century right around the time of the rise of modern feminism,”

To the people who say it (head covering) no longer has any significance, we no longer know what it means, I say “Not true at all; we know exactly what it means which is why it’s hated.”

“The head covering symbolizes all that is strong and anointed about biblical womanhood. The head covering is gentle, feminine, meek, quiet, tender, and yet filled with the authority of the Sword of the Spirit. It is a powerful demonstration that the wearer, a daughter of Eve, refuses to follow the aforementioned in her independence and susceptibility to deception because she has been transformed by Jesus. The head covering is a subversive symbol in modern times that shouts loudly into the physical and spiritual world that Christ is King and His Word is “quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb. 4:12). Consider how times have changed since the Western church rejected the head covering. Think about what has happened to marriage, home-making, the discipling of children, modesty, sexuality, submission, church roles, and meek and quiet spirits. Consider modern men as well, mostly passive, addicted to sports, and faltering in their discipleship and breadwinner duties. Yes, this sounds awfully old-fashioned; and no, the loss of the head covering didn’t cause all this. But its loss is symptomatic of a wider rejection of the Word of God.”

John Murray (1898-1975)Professor of Systematic Theology at Westminster Theological Seminary

These excerpts are taken from a letter to the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (Australia) concerning the matter of women being veiled in worship.

Since Paul appeals to the order of creation (Vss. 3b, vss 7ff), it is totally indefensible to suppose that what is in view and enjoined had only local or temporary relevance. The ordinance of creation is universally and perpetually applicable, as also are the implications for conduct arising therefrom.”

“I am convinced that a head covering is definitely in view forbidden for the man (Vss 4 & 7) and enjoined for the woman (Vss 5,6,15). In the case of the woman the covering is not simply her long hair. This supposition would make nonsense of verse 6. For the thought there is, that if she does not have a covering she might as well be shorn or shaven, a supposition without any force whatever if the hair covering is deemed sufficient. In this connection it is not proper to interpret verse 15b as meaning that the hair was given the woman to take the place of the head covering in view of verses 5,6. The Greek of verse 15 is surely the Greek of equivalence as used quite often in the New Testament, and so the Greek can be rendered: “the hair is given her for a covering.” This is within the scope of the particular argument of verses 14,15 and does not interfere with the demand for the additional covering contemplated in verses 5,6,13. Verses 14 and 15 adduce a consideration from the order of nature in support of that which is enjoined earlier in the passage but is not itself tantamount to it. In other words, the long hair is an indication from ‘nature’ of the differentiation between men and women, and so the head covering required (Vss 5,6,13) is in line with what ‘nature’ teaches.”

“On these grounds my judgment is that presupposed in the Apostle’s words is the accepted practice of head covering for women in the assemblies of the Church . . . .”

“Since Paul appeals to the order of creation (vss. 3b, vss. 7ff.), it is totally indefensible to suppose that what is in view and enjoined had only local or temporary relevance.”

“The covering is not simply her long hair. This supposition would make nonsense of verse 6; for the thought there is, that if she does not have a covering she might as well be shorn or shaven, a supposition without any force whatever if the hair covering is deemed sufficient.”

Watchman Nee

“When many of the sisters in the church take the place given to woman and learn to cover their heads, they send out an unspoken word of testimony to the angels in the air, to the effect that God has obtained in the church what He desires.”

A.W. Pink (1886-1952)

“Because the woman has not been given rule and headship her head must be covered, and covered with a double covering: first, the long hair that God has given her by nature, so that even when she is outside the church that covering shall indicate that she is not her own head, but that she is under the dominion of the head of her household: secondly, that when she comes into the house of God there must be the additional cover of the hat because she is also in subjection to her spiritual brethren to whom God has appointed rule.” 

“What is so solemn in that sixth verse is the word “also.” I want you to notice that the Holy Spirit has there linked two things together. “If the woman be not covered let her also be shorn.”―In other words, God requires a double covering. He has given the woman the long hair to cover her head naturally, so that her head is covered when she is outside the church, to show that she is not her own ruler, her own head, but in subjection to the head of her household; but when she enters the house of God, another covering is required, to show that she is also in subjection to her spiritual head—those who have the rule in the house of God.”

“As far as my personal opinion is concerned, I have no hesitation in saying that in many things the woman is the superior of the man: in the finer sensibilities, in the nobler qualities that go to make up character, in patience and powers of endurance, in gentleness, in tenderness, in unselfishness, in ministering to the suffering, in love, the woman is the superior to man. But that is not what is under discussion here. What is under discussion here is the position that God has given unto each and how that position must be owned and acknowledged by the symbol that God has appointed—Because God has placed woman in the position of subordination her head must be covered.”

“Now God has appointed that because man is the head, because headship or dominion or rule has been delegated by God into the hands of man, God has ordained that that shall be symbolically shown forth when he enters the house of God. His head shall be uncovered; his head shall be revealed; his head shall be manifest because God has given to him the headship. But because God has not given headship to the woman, because he has placed her in subjection to man, therefore that must be symbolically shown forth by her having head covered, her head concealed, showing that she is not her own head, and her own ruler.” – A.W. Pink’s Studies in the Scriptures, 1926-27, volume 3, 257-263

Mathew Poole, Westminster Divine

“We have no such custom, of woman’s praying or prophesying with their heads uncovered, or men’s praying or prophesying with their heads covered;” (Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:16).

Charles Ryrie (1886-1952), The Ryrie Study Bible

“Women should be veiled or covered in the meeting of the church, and the men should not. Paul’s reasons were based on theology (headship v.3), the order of creation (v.7-9), and the presence of angels in the meeting (v.10). None of these reasons was based on contemporary social custom.”

“If angels desire to look into things pertaining to salvation, then they should see as they look at veiled women in the assembly of Christians the voluntary submission of a woman to her head. Thus the early church (for this was the custom of the churches generally) while offering religious equality in spiritual privilege insisted on showing in public worship the principle of subordination of women by their being veiled.”

Brian Schwertley, Head Coverings in Public Worship

“Head coverings represent what God teaches about marriage. Therefore, we should not mock or hate this biblical practice, but embrace it wholeheartedly… Culture at the present time in America is becoming increasingly pagan, hedonistic and anti-Christian. Any biblical practice that sets God’s people apart from our culture and sets an example for it ought to be embraced by believers. We certainly do not act as a salt and light to our heathen culture when we reject biblical imperatives relating to covenant headship and instead imitate the world.”

“NO SUCH CUSTOM, NOR DO THE CHURCHES OF GOD” (1 Corinthians 11:16).

(7) Paul concludes his discussion of head coverings in public worship by an appeal to apostolic authority and universal church practice. “But if anyone seems to be contentious, we have no such custom, nor do the churches of God” (1 Corinthians 11:16). There are a number of important things to note regarding this verse.

(a) Note that the appeal to apostolic authority both begins and ends the section (1 Corinthians 11: 2-16) dealing with head coverings (see verses 2 and 16). While the apostle supports the use of head coverings with careful argumentation from general and special revelation, he reminds the Corinthians of his special authority in this matter as an inspired apostle. Indeed, Paul emphasizes apostolic authority by using the pronoun “we”–“we have no such custom”. In context the “we” refers to all of the apostles. The apostle’s inspired, authoritative teachings, which have been inscripturated for our benefit, are foundational for the church and authoritative for all time (Eph. 2:20). Paul’s appeal to apostolic authority is designed to shut the door completely upon all further debate concerning head coverings. Paul in essence is saying: “Look if you want to argue about this matter (i.e., against head coverings in public worship) then I want you to know that you are not only contradicting me but also all of the apostles. We all stand with one accord on this issue; and, not only we but so do all the churches of Jesus Christ.” Hodge writes: “With such persons [i.e., contentious trouble makers] all argument is useless. Authority is the only end of controversy with such disturbers of the peace. The authority here adduced is that of the apostles and of the churches. The former was decisive, because the apostles were invested with authority not only to teach the gospel, but also to organize the church, and to decide every thing relating to Christian ordinances and worship. The authority of the churches, although not coercive, was yet great. No man is justified, except on clearly scriptural grounds, and from the necessity of obeying God rather than man, to depart from the established usages of the church in matters of public concern.” One could walk into any first century Christian church whether in Asia Minor, Palestine, Greece, or Rome and observe a lesson in covenant headship and the Christian family. Sadly, the opposite is true today. Modern declension can be observed in most churches every Sabbath because the apostolic injunction is rarely observed. Feminism and sloppy man-pleasing exegesis have contributed to the widespread disobedience to apostolic authority today. The only remedy for such rebellion against a biblical imperative is repentance.

(b) Note that unlike modern Reformed churches, which teach and practice diversity on this issue, Paul demands uniformity of doctrine and practice. The apostle says that if anyone seems to be contentious [i.e., disposed to quarrels or dissentious argumentation] about this matter they must stop and submit themselves to apostolic authority and universal church practice. Paul understands that there are people in the church who disagree with his teaching on head coverings. He recognizes that some people may even be angered by his doctrine. This recognition, however, does not cause Paul to act like a spineless modern church bureaucrat who attempts to ride the fence on controversial issues. Rather Paul stands on the inspired truth of his argumentation and demands uniformity of doctrine and practice on this matter. Biblical unity is established on the teaching of Scripture. Real lasting unity can only be achieved when believers submit themselves to the authority of Scripture.

The modern idea that unity is accomplished through compromise, through allowing mutually contradictory practices and doctrines in the church, is rejected by Paul. The inspired apostle knows that his arguments for head coverings in worship are not based on contemporary usages but on biblical truth and creational realities that will last as long as the present earthly economy. The covenant headship of the husband over his wife and the purpose of the wife is the same today as it was when Paul wrote (1 Cor. 11:7, 8, 9). A woman’s beautiful hair is still given to her as a natural veil, as her glory, as it was it times past (1 Cor. 11:14-15). The divine order of authority from the Father to Christ and from the man to the woman obviously has never been abrogated (1 Cor. 11:3). The angels of God still observe the public worship of God as they did in the first century (1 Cor. 11:10). One can certainly understand the apostle’s dogmatism and unwillingness to compromise on this issue when we examine his sublime analogies and careful argumentation. For Paul to allow diversity of teachings or practice on this issue would be to admit that he was totally wrong in his reasoning. For modern churchmen to allow diversity of practice on this issue is to implicitly deny the perspicuity of Scripture and apostolic authority. Modern believers who profess that they believe in the inspiration and authority of Scripture, yet who want to argue with the apostle Paul about his teaching on head coverings must repent and submit to the inspired command of Christ’s chief apostle: “Let her be covered” (1 Cor. 11:6).

(c) Note, that the custom (“we have no such custom” v. 16) to which Paul refers is the practice of women attending church uncovered (i.e., without wearing a cloth veil on the head). This point is important because Paul’s statement has been used by some exegetes to overturn the teaching of the whole chapter.

Before we consider the reasons why the custom is the non-use of head coverings by women, it is important to establish a proper translation of the apostle’s statement. Virtually every modern translation (NASB, NEB, RSV, and NIV) mistranslates toiauten as “other” (“we have no other custom”). Perhaps the reason this statement is so frequently mistranslated is that interpreters do not want to translate a verse in a manner that contradicts the immediate context. In other words, they recognize the absurdity of Paul saying, “we have no custom of women wearing head coverings in public worship,” immediately after issuing orders for women to cover their heads, followed by many reasons why head coverings are required (The absurdity of this meaning is true whether one believes head coverings are cloth coverings or long hair). But following the ordinary rules of the Greek language toiauten means such not other. Clark writes: “Of English versions, only the KJ and the ARV of 1901 translate the Greek correctly. The others are plainly wrong. Hemeis toiauton sunnetheian ouk echomen can mean only ‘We have no such custom.’ Foreign translations maintain the better scholarship of the KJ and the ARV.”

Having noted the proper translation of the second half of verse 16, let us return to the proper meaning of “custom”. Regarding this term there are three main interpretations:

(1) The custom referred to is the use of head coverings in worship. This view regards the statement “we have no such custom” as an abrogation of head coverings altogether as if the preceding arguments in favor of the practice were insufficient or culturally conditioned. This interpretation is patently absurd. The idea that Paul, who had just spent most of a chapter in an epistle giving detailed arguments why his imperative ordering women to cover their heads in worship must be obeyed, would then turn around and say, “By the way we the apostles reject the use of head coverings in worship as do all the churches”, is an implicit denial of verbal inspiration. Any interpretation that has Paul explicitly contradict himself on the same page and does violence to his moral character as if he were playing a joke on the Corinthians should be unacceptable to any Bible believing Christian.

(2) Another view is that the custom refers to the practice of being contentious (e.g., see Calvin, de Wette, Meyer and Edwards). While this interpretation does not contradict Paul’s teaching, as does the previous interpretation, nevertheless, it is not the most plausible interpretation. Being contentious or argumentative is a fault or bad habit, not a custom. Further, would Paul need to explain that none of the apostles believe in being contentious and harassing the elders in a church? Would he need to tell the Corinthians that none of the churches as an official practice adhere to nasty argumentation? Of course not!

(3) The only interpretation that does justice to the context and makes sense is that the custom refers to women going unveiled in public worship. The only custom of which there can be any question here is that on which the whole passage has turned: women attending public worship without being veiled. Godet writes: “Paul means that neither he, nor the Christians formed by him, nor in general any of the Churches of God, either those which he has not founded or those properly his own, allow such procedure in their ecclesiastical usages; comp. xiv. 36, 37, where the idea simply indicated here is developed.—The material proof of this assertion of Paul’s is found in the Christian representations which have been discovered in the Catacombs, where the men always wear their hair cut short, and the women the palla, a kerchief falling over the shoulders.” Charles Hodge concurs. Charles Hodge, 1 and 2 Corinthians, 214.

Leon Morris also gives the correct interpretation of verse 16. He writes “But Paul has no intention of arguing the matter with any who is given to wordy battles (contentious, philoneikos, is one who loves strife). Such are capable of prolonging an argument indefinitely. In the face of such an attitude Paul points to universal custom. We have no such custom, i.e., such as women praying or prophesying with head uncovered. Exactly whom he means by we is not clear, but the addition, neither the churches of God, shows that what he has just outlined is the habit throughout the Christian churches.” (1 Corinthians [Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1958], 136).

Alfred Plummer agrees. He writes: “There are people who are so fond of disputing that they will contest the clearest conclusions, and the Corinthians were fond of disputation. But the Apostle will not encourage them. If such should question the dictates of decorum and of nature in this matter they may be told that the teachers have no such usage as permitting women to be unveiled, -a thing unheard of in Christian congregations. It is possible that ameis means only himself, but he probably means that he knows of no Apostle who allows this.” (First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians [Edinburgh: T and T Clark, 1978 (1911), 235].

When criticizing the view that custom means the custom of being contentious he writes: “The only reason assigned for this interpretation, is Paul’s saying we have no such custom; which they say cannot mean the custom of women going unveiled. But why not? The apostles and the churches constituted a whole–neither the one nor the other, neither the churches nor their infallible guides, sanctioned the usage in question. Besides, no other custom is mentioned in the context than the one that he has been discussing. “If any one appear contentious,” is not a custom and suggests nothing to which the words such a custom can naturally refer.”

Let us once again consider the full impact of the apostle’s argument in verse 16. Paul is asserting that all the apostles are in agreement that women must cover their heads in public worship; that in every church (regardless of location–whether in Africa, Asia, or Europe–or culture–whether Jewish or Gentile, Greek or barbarian) women worship Christ with veiled heads. The apostle’s statement explains why throughout all church history in every branch of the Christian church (Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Protestant [Lutheran, Episcopal, Reformed], Coptic, etc.) until around the 1960s women worshipped with their heads covered. The testimony of church history can only be explained if the universal practice of the apostolic church was for women to cover their heads with a cloth veil during public worship. The sad truth is that head coverings were abandoned because: (1) Pastors were not preaching the whole counsel of God. (2) Hats and scarves became unfashionable. (3) Churches were infected with egalitarianism and feminism. Unfortunately once the unbiblical practice of women worshipping without head coverings became widespread, pastors and teachers defended current practice instead of calling the church to repentance. It would be prudent for modern churchmen to reconsider their widespread departure from an apostolic ordinance that had been the universal practice of the Christian church for the last two thousand years. Have these men discovered something that Paul, Augustine, Anselm, Calvin, Hodge and John Murray have missed? Certainly not!

http://www.gracealone.com/…/HeadcoveringsinPublicWorshi…)

David Silversides

Is Headcovering Biblical? By David Silversides
The headcovering requirement is based on the order of creation. It has been argued that this means that the principle of male headship is permanent, but the particular application of it (i.e. headcovering) was cultural. There is no evidence in the passage for this. Indeed, the evidence is in the opposite direction. Why the references to acts of worship? If it were a cultural matter, it would apply to all public appearances of women since the pagans of Corinth would not be concerned specifically about Christian worship practice. Some suggest that some of the women particularly abandoned their headcovering during ecstatic utterance, but this is pure invention as far as the text is concerned. The word rendered ‘ordinance’ (v. 2) is consistently used of that which has apostolic authority (rendered tradition in 2 Thess 2:15 & 3:6). The appeal to universal practice in v.16 should be noted. The idea that we must find ‘culturally relevant’ ways of expressing male headship becomes obviously absurd in a culture like ours where every trace of male leadership is being eradicated.

The Danger of the Cultural Argument.

The random imposition on a passage of Scripture of cultural considerations has serious repercussions for Biblical interpretation generally. As an example of this approach applied to other passages relating to gender issues, let us see how it works with 1 Tim 2:11-14.
a) The concession – the principle of male leadership is based on the creation order and is permanent.
b) The assumption – in the culture of the 1st century AD, the woman’s acceptance of male leadership was expressed by her being silent in public assemblies (probably more easily provable than the use of headcovering).
c) The conclusion – female silence wasn’t the real issue, but the principle of male headship which may find different expression according to time and place. Therefore, women may now, in our culture, preach and teach in the church. We are sure the RPNA would draw back from such a conclusion, but they have conceded the ground to it in their opposition to headcovering.
Again, the repercussions of the random appeal to culture approach on other aspects of worship should be kept in mind. Immediately after the headcovering passage, we have the section relating to the Lord’s Supper. Let us see how the random cultural approach applies in 1 Corinthians 11:23-27.
a) The concession the principle that an ordinance commemorating the death of Christ in a meal is to be observed is permanent.
b) The assumption – bread and wine were the normal elements of food and drink in the 1st Century AD (undoubtedly true) and can be assumed were only used in the Lord’s supper for cultural reasons.
c) The conclusion – We are to remember Christ’s death by communal partaking of food and drink, but the precise elements will depend on the culture of time and place (tea and biscuits or coke and crisps etc.).
Liberals, of course, apply this to doctrine as well. The cross of Christ, they say, permanently shows the love of God, but the setting of it in the language of propitiation and atonement are simply cultural baggage no longer applicable. We are sure that no-one involved in this discussion would fail to abhor such sentiments, but let us make no unwitting concessions to it. The God-ordained sign of a fabric head-covering, when understood and conscientiously practiced, is the Divinely appointed expression of acceptance of the Divinely appointed principle of male leadership.

“The headcovering requirement is based on the order of creation. It has been argued that this means that the principle of male headship is permanent, but the particular application of it (i.e. headcovering) was cultural. There is no evidence in the passage for this. Indeed, the evidence is in the opposite direction.”

“In so far as historic testimony is uniform, it is overwhelmingly in favour of the permanence of the requirement of women’s head-covering in congregational worship.”

“Female head-covering was the norm in the majority of churches for centuries. The comparatively recent change of this state of affairs is, we suspect, not due to greater exegetical insight or true scholarly advance, but concession to the spirit of the age in which we live.”

“It is certainly true that there has been an immense shift of opinion and practice in the last number of decades away from the once almost universal practice of women’s head-covering in public worship. Even the Church of England did not revoke the canon law requiring that women have their heads covered at Communion until 1942.”

“The cultural argument is asserted repeatedly, but seldom have we ever seen even an attempt to prove it, and when the attempt is made, it is invariably entirely dependent on alleged historical sources as to the practice of Corinthian society outside the passage itself. We should not be dependent on extra-biblical sources for our interpretation of a passage of Scripture that can make good sense without any external information being imported. This is all the more true when the argument of the passage depends on the created order.”

“That the covering in view is not simply a woman’s hair is equally clear. The passage becomes unbelievably tortuous if all the apostle intended was to teach about hair length. The term rendered ‘covering’ in verses 2-13 is ‘kalumma’. This term is used elsewhere in the New Testament of the veil covering Moses’ face in 2 Cor. 3:13-16, while the verb form is used in Matt. 8:24, Luke 8:16; 23:30 etc.”

“It also appears in the Septuagint version of the Old Testament (the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament from which the Apostles sometimes quote). It appears in Exodus 26:14, Num. 3:25, 4:8, 10, 11, 14 & 25 where it is rendered ‘covering’ in the AV. It is also found in Ex. 27:16 & 40:5 (translated ‘hanging’) and in Ex. 34:33-35 (translated ‘veil’) and in 1 Chron. 17:5 (translated ‘tabernacle’). The verb form is used in Gen. 9:23, 38:14-15, 2 Sam. 15:30 & Isaiah 47:2. It is not difficult to see that it refers to a fabric covering to be worn specifically in congregational worship as distinct from the constant covering of the woman’s hair. This is confirmed by the fact that the apostle, when he is referring to the hair in vs. 14-15, uses a different word, ‘peribolaion’ (‘something cast around’) from the kalumma to which he has referred in the previous verses.”

“The apostle indicates that the woman uncovering her head in worship, as with her removing her everyday covering by shaving her head, is a ‘shame’ (1 Cor. 11:6). The word rendered ‘shame’ is ‘aischron’ as when the apostle says, “it is a shame for women to speak in the church” (1 Cor. 14:35) and “it is a shame even to speak of those things done of them in secret” (Eph. 5:12). In the latter reference the apostle has in view the immoralities of the pagan world, not some infringements of cultural practice or custom. The former reference indicates a permanent rule for the church in all ages; the silence of women. Likewise with the head-covering – it is required now as surely as when the inspired apostle wrote these words to the church in Corinth – “Let her be covered”.”

“Verse 3: “I want you to know, however, that Christ is the head of all man; and man the head of the woman, and God the head of Christ. “
He introduces this matter of covering women’s heads with these fundamental principles; he is not saying it would be a good thing, this is the result of these basic principles of divine order. If you were advocating for some temporary fix, he would not start by saying, “I would like you to know that Christ is the head of all man; and the head of woman is man; and Christ’s head is God.”
What does this have to do with temporary concessions? Nothing. He says that God is the head of Christ, not by nature because Christ is divine and equal to the Father, but in his role as Mediator and God-man he fulfilled the will of the Father. He also says that Christ is the head of man; that man must do the will of Christ. But then he says, “but the man is the head of the woman”. He is not saying they don’t have the same spiritual privileges before God; every Christian has the privileges of God’s children, they have access to God through Christ. For in Christ there is no male or female, Gl 3:28. But he is talking about function and role and it is the Lord’s designation that government and leadership in the home and church are in the hands of men. He is talking about external order, not spiritual privilege. Christ rules man and as far as external order is concerned, he rules woman through man, putting her under the obligation to accept man’s rule. He reigns directly in her heart by the Spirit, but in the external order, Christ rules man and he rules woman through man, putting her under obligation to accept his delegated authority given to man.
Thus, when a man prays with his head covered, the apostle is saying he fails to behave the way God designed men; by turning upside down this designated ordinance for head covering, a man covering his head is denying his role as man to lead in the home and assume the most prominent roles assigned to men in the church. And so he dishonors his head, the Lord Jesus Christ.”

“The man who prays with his head covered is saying, “I don’t accept God’s injunctions”, he dishonors Christ. But the woman praying uncovered dishonors her head, the man, because praying uncovered she is saying: “I do not want the sign appointed by God in worship that I accept the paper distinctions that God has made; I will not accept; I reject the authority of man” and therefore she dishonors your head thats the man That’s the first line of argument.”

Seth Skolnitsky

“The particular practices Paul addresses are (1) head-covering and (2) hair-length. In recent treatments of the passage, it has become customary to effectively collapse these two topics. That is, when the hair itself is equated with the head-covering – and the subject of hair-length is (as is often the case) not addressed in any practical way – then the whole subject of the head-covering becomes moot. That is, the net effect is to ignore the apostolic legislation, which is, of course, to disregard the law of God. The view of Calvin, while very different from the approach under discussion, was certainly not novel in his day, or unusual for long years thereafter. That it strikes us very strange is a sad but eloquent commentary on how far we have moved from the heritage of the Reformers and their Puritan disciples.” (Translator’s Preface of Men, Women and Order in the Church – Three Sermons by John Calvin, Presbyterian Heritage Publications, Dallas, 1992, pp. 3f.)

R.C. Sproul

“Though the many authors differ on various issues associated with headcoverings, one important issue upon which they are all agreed is that Paul was not commanding the women in Corinth either to let their hair grow long so as to use their long hair as a headcovering in worship, or to neatly place their hair upon their heads as a headcovering in worship, but rather to place upon their heads a fabric headcovering when they worship before the Lord. This conclusion is reached by scholars from various denominational backgrounds, from different geographical locations, and from many periods of church history. The wearing of fabric head coverings in worship was universally the practice of Christian women until the twentieth century. What happened? Did we suddenly find some biblical truth to which the saints for thousands of years were blind? Or were our biblical views of women gradually eroded by the modern feminist movement that has infiltrated the Church of Jesus Christ which is “the pillar and ground of the truth.””

“It is one thing to seek a more lucid understanding of the biblical content by investigating the cultural situation of the first century; it is quite another to interpret the New Testament as if it were merely an echo of the first-century culture. To do so would be to fail to account for the serious conflict the church experienced as it confronted the first-century world. Christians were not thrown to the lions for their penchant for conformity. Some very subtle means of relativizing the text occur when we read into the text cultural considerations that ought not to be there. For example, with respect to the hair-covering issue in Corinth, numerous commentators on the Epistle point out that the local sign of the prostitute in Corinth was the uncovered head. Therefore, the argument runs, the reason why Paul wanted women to cover their heads was to avoid a scandalous appearance of Christian women in the external guise of prostitutes. What is wrong with this kind of speculation? The basic problem here is that our reconstructed knowledge of first-century Corinth has led us to supply Paul with a rationale that is foreign to the one he gives himself. In a word, we are not only putting words into the apostle’s mouth, but we are ignoring words that are there. If Paul merely told women in Corinth to cover their heads and gave no rationale for such instruction, we would be strongly inclined to supply it via our cultural knowledge. In this case, however, Paul provides a rationale which is based on an appeal to creation, not to the custom of Corinthian harlots. We must be careful not to let our zeal for knowledge of the culture obscure what is actually said. To subordinate Paul’s stated reason to our speculatively conceived reason is to slander the apostle and turn exegesis into eisogesis. The creation ordinances are indicators of the transcultural principle. If any biblical principles transcend local customary limits, they are the appeals drawn from creation… What if, after careful consideration of a biblical mandate, we remain uncertain as to its character as principle or custom? If we must decide to treat it one way or the other but have no conclusive means to make the decision, what can we do? Here the biblical principle of humility can be helpful. The issue is simple. Would it be better to treat a possible custom as a principle and be guilty of being overscrupulous in our design to obey God? Or would it be better to treat a possible principle as a custom and be guilty of being unscrupulous in demoting a transcendent requirement of God to the level of a mere human convention? I hope the answer is obvious.” R.C. Sproul, Knowing Scripture, 110

“I am convinced that when Paul says the women are to cover their heads, he is basing that action on how God created male and female. It would seem to me, using a principle of interpretation of what we call hermeneutics, that if there ever an indication of a perpetual ordinance in the church, it is that which is based on an appeal to Creation. I’m persuaded that the principle of covering the head is still in effect because it was built into creation. And even though it’s not culturally accepted anymore in our society, I still believe it’s principle. I don’t think it matters one bit whether it’s a babushka, a veil, or a hat, but I think that the symbol should remain intact as a sign of our obedience to God.” R.C. Sproul, Now, That’s a Good Question, 48

Charles Spurgeon

“Do you think you and I have sufficiently considered that we are always looked upon by angels, and that they desire to learn by us the wisdom of God? The reason why our sisters appear in the House of God with their heads covered is ‘because of the angels’. The apostle says that a woman is to have a covering upon her head, because of the angels, since the angels are present in the assembly and they mark every act of indecorum, and therefore everything is to be conducted with decency and order in the presence of the angelic spirits.”

Joseph Spurgeon

Why does this issue matter?

It matters because the debate around the issue is indicative of when Christians are tempted to disregard long held biblical practices to accommodate the culture.

What I mean is that for 1900 years there was hardly any debate as to the meaning of the passage in 1st Corinthians but with the advent of the feminist movement suddenly the passage is now seemingly incomprehensible.

Pay attention to all the silly arguments for why the passage could not mean what all Christian’s thought it meant for 1900 years. Yes, there may have been some questions as to some of the details of the passage (why are angels mentioned) and finer points of application (only in worship or all the time) but there was no question as to whether women should wear headcovering in worship.

This same kind of confusion happens on any passage that we want to abandon because of the culture. It’s the same story when it comes to other more important issues of God’s word. Did God really say becomes the theme. What was once clear gets muddied every time we don’t want to obey. Suddenly there are interpretations which remove our need to obey: it was all cultural, it’s up for debate, and it’s all just a matter of conscience.

These same tricks are now being used to try to confuse a whole host of issues ranging from abortion to homosexuality.

Therefore be suspicious whenever a passage suddenly becomes debatable at just the same time the culture becomes hostile to its truths.

Tertullian (150-224 A.D.)

“But that point which is promiscuously observed throughout the churches, whether virgins ought to be veiled or no, must be treated of. For they who allow to virgins immunity from headcovering, appear to rest on this; that the apostle has not defined ‘virgins’ by name, but ‘women,’ as ‘to be veiled;’ nor the sex generally, so as to say ‘females,’ but a class of the sex, by saying ‘women:’ for if he had named the sex by saying ‘females,’ he would have made his limit absolute for every woman; but while he names one class of the sex, he separates another class by being silent. For, they say, he might either have named ‘virgins’ specially; or generally, by a compendious term, ‘females.'” Tertullian (A.D. 198) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.3 pg. 687

In commenting on 1 Corinthians 11:4,5, Tertullian notes, “Behold two diverse names, Man and Woman ‘every one’ in each case: two laws, mutually distinctive; on the one hand (a law) of veiling, on the other (a law) of baring.”

“Throughout Greece, and certain of its barbaric provinces, the majority of churches keep their virgins covered. In fact, this practice is followed in certain places beneath this African sky. So let no one ascribe this custom merely to the Gentile customs of the Greeks and barbarians.”

“Moreover, I will put forth as models those churches that were founded by either apostles or apostolic men. . . . The Corinthians themselves understood him to speak in this manner. For to this very day the Corinthians veil their virgins. What the apostles taught, the disciples of the apostles confirmed.” [Tertullian, The Veiling of Virgins The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol. 4 pp. 27-29,33]

“Every woman,” said he, “praying and prophesying with head uncovered, dishonors her own head.” What is “every woman”, but woman of every age, of every rank, of every condition? “Every man.” As, then, in the masculine sex, under the name of “man” even the “youth” is forbidden to be veiled; so, too, in the feminine, under the name of “woman,” even the “virgin” is bidden to be veiled… For indeed it is “on account of the angels” that he said women must be veiled, because on account of “the daughters of men” angels revolted from God.” Tertullian (A.D. 198) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.3 pg. 688

“It behooves our virgins to be veiled from the time that they have passed the turning-point of their age: that this observance is exacted by truth, on which no one can impose prescription – no space of times, no influence of persons, no privilege of regions.” Tertullian (A.D. 198) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.4 pg.27

“Throughout Greece, and certain of its barbaric provinces, the majority of Churches keep their virgins covered. There are places, too, beneath this (African) sky, where this practice obtains; lest any ascribe the custom to Greek or barbarian Gentilehood. But I have proposed (as models) those Churches which were founded by apostles or apostolic men.” Tertullian (A.D. 198) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.4 pg.28

“If any,” he says, “is contentious, we have not such a custom, nor (has) the Church of God.” So, too, did the Corinthians themselves understand him. In fact, at this day the Corinthians do veil their virgins. What the apostles taught, their disciples approve.” Tertullian (A.D. 198) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.4 pg.32-33

William Tyndale

“I answer, that Paul taught by mouth such things as he wrote in his epistles. And his traditions were the gospel of Christ, and honest manners and living, and such a good order as becometh the doctrine of Christ: as that a woman obey her husband, have her head covered, keep silence, and go womanly and christianly apparelled; that children and servants be in subjection: and that the young obey their elders; that no man eat but he that laboureth and worketh; and that men make an earnest thing of God’s word and of his holy sacraments; and to watch, fast, and pray, and such like as the scripture commandeth: which things he that would break were no Christian man.” 

Bruce Waltke, “1 Corinthians 1:2-16: An Interpretation”, Bibliotheca Sacra, 1978

“This writer concludes, then, that a woman who prays or prophesies in an assembly of believers should cover her head as a symbol of her submission to the absolute will of God who has ordered His universe according to His own good pleasure… Thus the face with which God chose to reveal Himself to the world is one that the world desperately needs to see, namely, a man who displays the image and glory of God through Christ, and a woman who, despite her ontological equality with the man, submits to him. In the historical process of administering His church, however, God has been pleased with the completion of the canon of Scripture to withdraw the gift of prophecy. In the practice of the churches today the apostolic teaching has relevance directly only to prayer. In this writer’s judgment, however, it would be well for Christian women to wear head coverings at church meetings as a symbol of an abiding theological truth.”

John Wesley

“Therefore if a woman is not covered — If she will throw off the badge of subjection, let her appear with her hair cut like a man’s. But if it be shameful far a woman to appear thus in public, especially in a religious assembly, let her, for the same reason, keep on her veil.” – John Wesley’s Notes on the Bible

“For a man indeed ought not to veil his head because he is the image and glory of God in the dominion he bears over the creation, representing the supreme dominion of God, which is his glory. But the woman is a matter of glory to the man, who has a becoming dominion over her. Therefore she ought not to appear except with her head veiled as a tacit acknowledgement of it.” – John Wesley’s Explanatory Notes, 1 Corinthians 11:7

K.P. Yohannan

“Paul’s admonition for women to wear a head covering ‘because of the angels’ removes any doubt that this teaching is universal and timeless.”

“Have you considered why there is so much tension and fighting over placing a small piece of cloth on one’s head? When a woman wears the symbol of God’s government, a head covering, she is essentially a rebuke to all the fallen angels. Her actions say to them, ‘You have rebelled against the Holy God, but I submit to Him and His headship. I choose not to follow your example of rebellion and pride.’”


The meaning of head-covering by Zac Poonen

“There are at least three reasons given in the New Testament why a woman should cover her head when she prays or prophesies in the meetings of the church:

First: The Bible says, “A man should NOT cover his he…” – and the reason given is: … because he is the image and glory of God”. In contrast, we are told, “but the woman is the glory of man” (1 Cor.11:7). The glory of man must be covered in the church – and since woman is the glory of man, she testifies to this fact by covering her head. This is the plain and simple meaning of this verse.

Second: The Bible says, “A woman’s long hair is her glory” (1 Cor.11:15). The glory of the woman also must be covered in the church, just like the glory of man. And so she must cover her head which has the glory of her long hair. Almost all women are conscious that their long hair is a major part of what makes them look attractive – and that is why even among those women who do put a covering on their heads, most of them cover only a part of their hair!! If a woman does not want to cover her head, then the only alternative that the New Testament offers is to remove that glory, by shaving her head completely: “If a woman does not cover her head, let her also have her hair cut off; but if it is disgraceful for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, let her cover her head” (1 Cor.11:6).

Third: The Bible says: “Man was not created for the woman’s sake, but woman for the man’s sake. Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels” (1 Cor.11:10). The head-covering symbolizes the fact that a woman accepts her God-appointed role as having been created “for man’s sake” as his helper and therefore her willingness to be submissive to male authority – whether as a wife to her husband, or as a daughter to her father, or as a sister in the church to the church-elders. It is significant that the disappearance of the head-covering from women in Western churches (on a large scale) coincided with the time that the movement for “Women’s Liberation” (a phrase used in a book in 1949) began to spread in Western countries – about 60 years ago. The “angels” mentioned in this verse could refer either to the fallen angels or to the angels in heaven. So it could either be a reminder to women to bear in mind that the fallen angels fell because they were not submissive to authority.

1 Corinthians 11:16 says that every church that is a church of God, will insist on this head covering for women when they pray or prophesy. The Holy Spirit recognized that 20 centuries later this would become a controversial issue; and so He made Paul to state (in this same verse) that if anyone was going to be argumentative about this matter, he would not argue with such a person. He would just allow that person to continue on in his/her disobedience and inconsistency.”


Are head coverings biblical? A video examination

I believe I ought to cover. Where do I start?

Scripture tells us to cover but doesn’t give us many details as to what we are to cover with.

The answer as to what a proper headcovering is, how to cover, and where to get coverings is there is no one answer. Perhaps you can make yourself one (and perhaps sell them to other ladies). There are tutorials online for tying scarves you might already have on hand. You can purchase a veil, tie a scarf or even a pretty bandana over your hair, wear a hat, and there are various other options, also.

I usually use a scarf, either large or small, and twist it, tie it, drape it, and so on. You can purchase a larger headband that spreads out to cover your head from WalMart, Target, or Amazon. Or you can buy a headcovering from one of the many stores online that specialize in them or offer them as a sideline.

There are various videos on YouTube that demonstrate various ways to tie scarves.


Shops that sell headcovers and patterns

My Amazon Head cover suggestions (this opens to my Amazon suggestions; click on head covers)

garlands of grace

RuttUSA

RuttShop

SilverStitchingCo

Headcoverings by Devorah

Veils by Lily

The Tichel Shop

Scarves.net

MillineryShop.net

EVintage Veils

The Mimi Boutique

HeavenlyHeadCovering

FanFan Headcovering

LiturgicalTime

GraceeJoy

CareKaps

Headcoverings by Esther

Patterns

HappyHomestead

Full Coverage Headwrap/Headcovering/Headscarf – Downloadable PDF Sewing Pattern and Tutorial

ADULT Modest Prayer Veil Pattern Long Veil Head covering Head scarf Tutorial Headcovering Sewing PDF Tutorial Headscarf Bandana DIY Headwrap

ADULT Head covering Pattern Headcovering Pattern Wide Fabric Headband Pattern Tutorial Adult Women Sewing PDF Pattern

Other items

Christian Headcoverings | Women’s Reformed Covering Water-resistant Matte Sticker | 1 Corinthians 11:2-16

My Amazon links earn me a small commission

Soli Deo Gloria!

2 Comments

  1. A very thorough and broad explanation with evidence of historical practice on headcovering.

    1. Thank you. Soli Deo Gloria!

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