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Friday, July 12, 2013

Listen Up Ladies

As Mennonites we have always understood the first part of 1 Corinthians 11 to say women should not cut their hair and wear a fabric head covering over their hair. Styles of coverings have changed over the years from a white cap that tied under the chin to a loose hanging veil. The Bible does not prescribe a pattern but it does teach the principle and winds up by saying if there is anyone who wants to contest it there is no room for argument. ("If any man seem to be contentious we have no such custom." KJV)
As Mennonites became more acclimated to the American culture, they began explaining away this Biblical doctrine. First the covering was tossed aside, then the hair was cut, and skirts were discarded for pants. Mennonite women blended into society and could no longer be identified as Mennonite on sight. (I'll throw in something extra for free. Why did beards become fashionable? When women cut their hair short and started wearing pants like men, the men had to do something to identify their gender. So they did something women can't do.)
It's odd that people broke 1 Corinthians 11 into two parts, saying the first part on the covering was a cultural practice of Bible times and does not apply to our culture while clinging to the last part of the chapter which gives instructions on keeping communion.
The doctrine of the head covering was explained away but the Word of God did not change. And today people who were not taught this doctrine all their lives are reading 1 Corinthians 11 and coming to the same understanding.
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...? - R.C. Sproul
See more here:
Head coverings are NOT a Mennonite idea. It is a Biblical doctrine that God never amended, revoked, or changed. This Head Covering Movement promotes wearing a fabric covering for corporate worship. It's a good start but I believe it should be worn at all times. We never know when we're going to have to shoot off an emergency prayer and need to be prepared at all times. And furthermore, it is a visible sign that we are Christians and take God seriously. It gives a testimony without speaking a word.
Who do you want to be identified with? God or society? Sure, it may make you look "odd" and stand out in a crowd but I'd much rather be identified with God than society. Wouldn't you?

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