March 30, 2023 Sam Snyder

Resources & References for Hair & Head Coverings in 1 Corinthians 11

Resources & References for Hair & Head Coverings in 1 Corinthians 11

Last Sunday was quite the message with lots of information that may have seemed quite crazy but hopefully helped to make an often confusing passage understandable. My experience has been that most exegesis of the text managed to explain about 80% well, but then the other 20% contradicted the previous points or simply felt unaddressed.

I'll start with the most scandalous hypothesis, the possibility of the final word for covering actually meaning testicle. HERE is one Dr. Troy Martin's papers on it. Dr. Michael Heiser talks about it and the connection between that and "the angels" in an episode on his podcast, which you can listen to HERE (you can also scroll down on that page for a deeper dive into "because of the angels").

In my research I also came across some videos that dig into the text well that I can share more easily than books I can't share links to:

Dr. Craig Keener: Epistles: Example of Head Coverings

Dr. Mark Chavalas: Women in 1 Corinthians 11: Head Coverings and Literal and Figurative Uses of Head

Finally, Dr. Craig Bloomberg in his video series teaching through 1 Corinthians: Introduction to Christian Worship: Headship (1 Cor 11:2–3) (the following videos are good too).

Taking these various perspectives into consideration and the different elements that each brings, plus some of the other resources that I can't link as easily, is what helped lead to the conclusion: Hair was viewed as a sexual part of the body and that the problem being addressed in the passage was the confusion and conflict over what it would mean for people of difference classes with different customs to come together and worship in appropriate ways that would honor God and honor those around them, whether they were male or female.