Bible Reading Day 244
Day 244: September 1 (1 Corinthians 11:1-15)
Yesterday we finished our reading with Paul saying “I don’t just do what is best for me; I do what is best for others so that many may be saved.” He follows that this morning by saying “And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ.”
Paul’s first priority is to represent Jesus by being like Him. And he then challenges us to do the same. Keep that in mind as we read the first half of Chapter 11 today, because Paul goes on to give instructions for public worship (such as our Sunday morning services); how to behave and how not to behave.
What Paul writes is to a cultural context very different to 21st Century America and we must take care not to misunderstand what he is saying. First he states a foundational principle: Christ is the head (rightful authority) of every man. And God the Father is the head of Christ – not superior, not exerting power and dominance, but the equal to whom Christ willingly submits. The same applies to the way women relate to men (and vice-versa); God has created humanity with an order of authority which is not a hierarchy of power or significance, but a protection of willing mutual submission. Men submit to Christ, women submit to men, and God’s order causes all to flourish in their rightful attitudes and relationships.
This passage is stated in terms of hair and its significance in the ancient world, so the details are not applicable today, but the foundational principle is as challenging now as it was then: we are equals who are to submit to God, and to one another, in ways that God has laid out. We can be like the Corinthians and insist that we know better, that we are free from all that, or we can live the way God instructed and find true freedom in our willingness to submit.
You will likely have questions from today’s reading – email me your questions and I will do my best to answer them in an extra blog post in the next few days.
Have a great day!