Analytical Study of I Corinthians 11

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ANALYTICAL STUDY OF I CORINTHIANS 11:2-16
A Discussion of Head Coverings FOR MEN AND WOMEN

Table of Contents

Introduction……………………………………………………………..…Page 3 Historical and Geographical Background of Corinth..............................Page 4 The Occasion and Purpose of 1 Corinthians……………………….........Page 5 Subject of Head Coverings………………………………………………..Page 5 Analysis of 1 Corinthians 11:2-16……………………………………...…Page 7 Conclusion………………………………………………………………….Page 13 Bibliography……………………………………………………………….Page 16

Introduction
This research paper will discuss I Corinthians 11:2-16. This passage speaks to the issue of proper head coverings for men and women in the early church. My research will look at why Paul felt it was important to write to the church at Corinth regarding this subject. I also will look at the circumstances in Corinth at that time, compared with the church today, and speak to whether Paul’s writings apply to men and women today. Head Coverings – I Corinthians 11:2-16

2 Now I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I delivered them to you. 3 But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God. 4 Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head, 5 but every wife who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head, since it is the same as if her head were shaven. 6 For if a wife will not cover her head, then she should cut her hair short. But since it is disgraceful for a wife to cut off her hair or shave her head, let her cover her head. 7 For a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God, but woman is the glory of man. 8 For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. 9 Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man. 10 That is why a wife ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels. 11 Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man nor man of woman; 12 for as woman was made from man, so man is now born of woman. And all things are from God. 13 Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a wife to pray to God with her head uncovered? 14 Does not nature itself teach you that if a man wears long hair it is a disgrace for him, 15 but if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For her hair is given to her for a covering. 16 If anyone is inclined to be contentious, we have no such practice, nor do the churches of God.

This discussion should not take place without first looking at the City of Corinth at the time of Paul’s letter to the Corinthians. Many problems had arisen in the early church, especially at Corinth.

Historical and Geographical Background of Corinth
Corinth’s was an important city in the ancient world. It was the densely populated capital of the Roman province of Achaia (a prefecture within contemporary Greece bears the name still), a busy commercial centre, and subject, therefore, to many outside influences. A thriving port city, it was infamous for its sexual vice and immorality. Located on the route from Rome to the East, its key geographical position was ideal for the spread of the gospel as merchants and travelers from many places passed through it. Dominating the city was the ‘Acrocorinth’, a hill of over 1,850 feet, on which stood a large temple to Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love. The 1,000 priestesses of the temple, who were sacred prostitutes, came down into the city when evening fell and plied their trade in the streets. ‘The cult was dedicated to the glorification of sex.’ The worship of Aphrodite is parallel to that of the Ashtoreth (taken from Syrian worship of Astarte) in the days of Solomon, Jeroboam and Josiah.

Paul preached the gospel in Corinth in the early 50s AD during his second missionary journey (Acts 18:1–18). When opposition grew fierce there, the Lord Jesus spoke to him in a vision assuring him that he had ‘many...
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