Many give their reasons as to why a man or woman should or should not cover their head. But does scripture answer this?
1Corinthians 11:4-16 "Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head. But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered. For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man. For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man. For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels. Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord. For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God. Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered? Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him? But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering. But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God."
Head Coverings for men
According to scripture, a man must not cover this head while praying or prophesying, for it will be a dishonor to the Spiritual head.
1Corinthians 11:4 " Every man praying or prophesying, having his (physical) head covered, dishonoureth2617 his (Spiritual) head."
1Corinthians 11:7 " For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God:"
2617 "kat-ahee-skhoo'-no From G2596 and G153; to shame down, that is, disgrace or (by implication) put to the blush: - confound, dishonour, (be a-, make a-) shame (-d)."
For those men who think they need to wear the head covering while praying, they need to read the law again, it was only the High Priest who was commanded to wear one, see Exodus 28:4. Plus it makes no sense, that if you are going to wear one because the High Priest wore one, that you would not stop with just the head covering, you would also wear the tunic, sash, and the breastplate.
So it comes down to, a man who covers his head while praying is dishonoring the Lord.
So why do Jews wear a kippah (Head covering)? Basically to announce to the world "I am a proud Jew" and to "remind themselves of God". In Hebrew, the head covering is called "kippah" which means "dome." History tells us that the Israelites have always chosen their own customs of God.
Head Coverings for Women
1Corinthians 11:15 "But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory1391 to her: for her hair is given her for a covering4018."
Please note that the Greek word used for 'covering4018' here is different than the Greek word used for 'cover' in all of the previous verses.
Both can mean 'cover' but, both cover in a different way. This verse states that a womans hair is her glory,
" 1391 dox'-ah From the base of G1380; glory (as very apparent), in a wide application (literally or figuratively, objectively or subjectively): - dignity, glory (-ious), honour, praise, worship."
Again, this scripture states that the hair covers the head of the woman, her long hair is a glory to her, therefore it should be covered by a veil.
1Corinthians11:5 " But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered (glory is revealed) dishonors her head (husband), for that is one and the same as if she were shaven (her glory/hair removed)"
If a woman prays without a veil, it would be as if her hair was shaven. Why? Because in both cases she is rejecting the authority of the man (husband).
1Corinthians 11:6 "For if the woman be not covered (her own glory being manifested), let her also be shorn (cut off that glory): but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven (her glory cut off), let her be covered (veil her own glory and the glory of man)."
So it is better to uncover the glory of the man (woman) by shaving off her hair, than to uncover the glory of the woman (her hair) while praying. If you aren't going to cover both the head and the hair with a veil, shave off the head so that your own selfish glory be not manifested.
Now some would like to say that it should be interpreted this way:
" But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered (has short hair) dishonors her head (man), for that is one and the same as if she were shaven (completely cut off)"
But would it really dishonor the husband if a woman had short hair? It seems far more likely that it would dishonor the woman, because her own glory is removed.
No Such Custom
The above statement is not grounds for dismissing the head covering. What it says is, that the assemblies of God have no such custom of allowing women to pray uncovered, why go through explaining all that, just to dismiss it in the last sentence? Because he didn't!
1Corinthians 11:16 "But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the assemblies of God."
Is it Sin?
Read and decide!
The point here was not to condemn, but to enlighten those with an interest on this topic.
The Church of God Proclaimed