You are on page 1of 75

The Woman Question

The Woman
Kenneth E. Hagin
Scripture references are from the King James Version of the Bible unless otherwise
Scripture references identified WEYMOUTH are from WEYMOUTH'S EW
TEST!MET " MO#E$ S%EE&H b' $ichard (rancis We'mouth. %ublished
b' special arran)ement with *ames &lar+e , &ompan' -td.. and reprinted b'
permission of Harper , $ow. %ublishers. "nc.
E/cerpts from The Pendulum Swings b' Bob Buess are used with permission.
Scripture 0uotations mar+ed -EESE$ are from The Twenty-Four Books of the Holy
Bible, Hebrew and nglish b' "saac -eeser. published b' Hebrew %ublishin)
Second Printing 1978
ISBN 0-8007-8214-3
Copyright 1975 y !enneth "#gin $ini%trie%
P&'i%hed y $#nn# Chri%ti#n (&tre#ch
)'' right% re%er*ed
+ir#ry o, Congre%% C#t#'og C#rd N&-er. 75-10513
Printed in the /nited St#te% o, )-eric#
#r. %. &. elson was a Baptist minister and theolo)ian. and
one of the most hi)hl' educated men of his da'. when he
recei1ed the Hol' Spirit. He founded. in 2343. the Southwestern
Bible "nstitute in Enid. O+lahoma. which later became
Southwestern !ssemblies of 5od &olle)e in Wa/ahachie.
Te/as. He went to be with the -ord in 2364.
"t was m' pri1ile)e to sit under his teachin) in the earl'
da's of m' ministr'. !nd " came into possession of some of his
mimeo)raphed notes which ha1e been of )reat assistance to me
in the preparation of this boo+. He could read and write thirt'7
two lan)ua)es. and was an e/pert on Hebrew and 5ree+. " heard
him sa' that he considered the !. S. Worrell translation of the
ew Testament to be the closest to the 5ree+ of an' translation
a1ailable at the time. "n his notes were some 0uotations from the
Worrell translation of the ew Testament which " ha1e used. as
well as 0uotations from the commentaries of Marcus #odd.
8EETH E. H!5"
2 !n "ntroduction.......................................................................3
4 "s the Man the Head of the Woman9......................................2:
; Must Wi1es !lwa's Obe' Their Husbands9.........................4;
6 Must Women 8eep Silence in the &hurches9........................;<
: Must Women Ha1e Their Heads &o1ered in &hurch9...........:;
= %roper #ress and !dornment for &hristian Women..............=;
< "n &onclusion........................................................................<;
The Woman Question
2 An Introduction
1 CORITHIA! 1"#$"%$&
$" 'et (our women kee) silence in the churches#
*or it is not )ermitted unto them to s)eak+ ,ut the(
are commanded to ,e under o,edience- as also
saith the law.
$. And i* the( will learn an( thing- let them ask
their hus,ands at home# *or it is a shame *or
women to s)eak in the church.
$& What/ came the word o* 0od out *rom (ou/ or
came it unto (ou onl(/
1 TI1OTH2 3#11%13
11 'et the woman learn in silence with all
13 5ut I su**er not a woman to teach- nor to usur)
authorit( o6er the man- ,ut to ,e in silence.
These words from the Epistles of %aul ha1e been a source
of perple/it' to lo1ers of the Word of 5od>in particular to that
)reat and )rowin) compan' of women who feel a fire burnin) in
their souls which the' cannot smother. and who +now the hand
of 5od has been laid upon them for ser1ice.
"n whole &hristian denominations. women ha1e been
forbidden to teach. preach. or e1en to testif' or offer audible
pra'er in church. based on these Scriptures. Man' conser1ati1e
denominations allow the women to ta+e onl' a 1er' small part.
ow some people would simpl' brush aside these words
from the Epistles of %aul b' sa'in) that %aul was merel'
e/pressin) his own fallible opinion. But " belie1e. because %aul
states when he e/presses his own opinion. that %aul is writin)
under inspiration of the Spirit of 5od. "n fact. he went on to sa'
in 2 &orinthians 26. !"f any man think himself to be a #ro#het,
$% The &oman 'uestion
or s#iritual, let him a(knowledge that the things that " write
unto you are the (ommandments of the )ord* But if any man be
ignorant, let him be ignorant! ?1erses ;<. ;@A.
The passa)e commandin) women to +eep silence in the
churches is in chapter 26 of 2 &orinthians>the )reat %entecostal
chapter. !nd who e1er saw a %entecostal church where the
women +ept silence and were not permitted to spea+9 " ha1en't.
"n no other churches " +now of are women more free to spea+.
teach. preach. pra'. shout. and hold responsible positions than in
%entecostal or (ull 5ospel assemblies. Yet no louder claim is
made to follow the Word of 5od wholl' and solel' than the
claim of (ull 5ospel and %entecostal churches. "n fact. that's
what is meant b' (ull 5ospel>followin) the full truth. !nd in
(ull 5ospel and %entecostal Bible schools and seminaries.
women and )irls are found stud'in) the Word of 5od in
preparation for distincti1el' &hristian ser1ice as missionaries.
e1an)elists. and preachers.
Howe1er. when 'ou Bust s+im o1er the surface of these
Scriptures without )oin) into detail to stud' them. it would seem
that our custom in (ull 5ospel7dom is at 1ariance with the
teachin)s of %aul. Therefore. it is incumbered upon us either to
admit we i)nore and 1iolate the Word of 5od in this particular
instance or. we must interpret it in harmon' with the practices
we permit in our midst.
Was 7aul a Woman%Hater/
" ha1e heard some preachers and others in the church world
ad1ance the theor' that %aul didn't li+e women. ne1er married.
and was in fact a woman7hater. The' propose this as the reason
he put restrictions on women. Well. %aul was not a woman7
or does he ad1ise celibac' as some thin+ he does. He did
ad1ise it under the circumstances which e/isted in that da'.
$eadin) 2 &orinthians <C4:76D 'ou will find %aul ad1ised
+n "ntrodu(tion $$
celibac' because of what he calls the Epresent distressE ?1erse
4=A. i.e. the persecutions and afflictions to which &hristians in
his time were e/posed. and also for the sa+e of one's bein) free
to de1ote himself wholeheartedl' to the ser1ice of the -ord.
%aul was not a)ainst matrimon'. You +now that from the
passa)e 'ou Bust read. "n Hebrews 2;C6 he sa's. !,arriage is
honourable in all*** * !
When he )a1e the 0ualifications for a bishop. or pastor ?2
Timoth' ;C27<. Titus 2C:72DA. he said he should be the husband
of one wife. rule in his household well. ha1in) his children well
disciplined. ow if %aul had hated women. or had felt all
ministers should be celibates. he would ha1e ad1ised Timoth'
and Titus to find unmarried men for this most responsible
position. But he didn't.
%aul spo+e in terms which showed his hi)h re)ard for
womanhood and for the wor+ of women.
RO1A! 1&#1%3
1 I commend unto (ou 7he,e our sister- which is a
ser6ant o* the church which is at Cenchrea#
3 That (e recei6e her in the 'ord- as ,ecometh
saints- and that (e assist her in whatsoe6er ,usiness
she hath need o* (ou# *or she hath ,een a succourer
o* man(- and o* m(sel* also.
The 5ree+ word diakonos, translated here as ser-ant, is
translated elsewhere in the 8in) *ames Fersion of the ew
Testament as dea(on* Some of the newer translations of 1erse
one read. E" commend unto 'ou %hebe . . . a deaconess... . E
!nd " want 'ou to notice that %aul said to the church at
$ome. and he wrote to the men as well as the women. E . . .
assist her**. . E !ssist this woman. in other words. #on't Bust
push her aside and ta+e o1er. but assist her in whate1er business
she has need of 'ou.
$. The &oman 'uestion
"n his warm )reetin)s. %aul does not for)et the women of
RO1A! 1&#$%"
$ 0reet 7riscilla and A8uila- m( hel)ers in Christ
" Who ha6e *or m( li*e laid down their own necks#
unto whom not onl( I gi6e thanks- ,ut also all the
churches o* the 0entiles.
&ontrar' to the usual custom amon) us toda'. e1en in this
modern a)e. %aul mentions the wife. %riscilla. before the
husband. !0uila.
!/reet ,ary,E he wrote. !who bestowed mu(h labour on
us! ?1erse =A.
RO1A! 1&#13
13 !alute Tr()hena and Tr()hosa- who la,our in
the 'ord. !alute the ,elo6ed 7ersis- which la,oured
much in the 'ord.
(rom the 5ree+ we +now these three indi1iduals were
women. !nd since %aul said of Tr'phena and Tr'phosa. !who
labour in the )ord,! and of %ersis. !whi(h laboured mu(h in the
)ord,! these women had some +ind of ministr'.
!nd in 1erse 2; he said. !Salute 0ufus (hosen in the )ord,
and his mother and mine*!
"n an e/tensi1e passa)e ?Ephesians :C427;;A showin) how
the husband7wife relationship illustrates the relationship of
&hrist to His &hurch. %aul ta+es the occasion to e/hort the
husbands to lo1e their wi1esC
E7HE!IA! .#3.+$$
3. Hus,ands- lo6e (our wi6es- e6en as Christ also
lo6ed the church- and ga6e himsel* *or it... .
$$ e6ertheless- let e6er( one o* (ou in )articular
+n "ntrodu(tion $1
so lo6e his wi*e e6en as himsel*....
"n &olossians ;C23 he wrote. !Husbands, lo-e your wi-es,
and be not bitter against them*!
!re these the words of a woman7hater9 &ertainl' notG
On the contrar'. the' show that this )reat apostle>thou)h
denied the sweet refinin) and inspirin) influence. comradeship.
and companionship of a )odl' wife>hi)hl' esteemed )ood
women. as well as )ood men. !nd if his counsels were onl'
heeded b' men. most of the sorrows and woes of )ood wi1es
would disappear.
The attitude of *esus toward women is an e/ample to all
men. one could e1er treat women with )reater consideration
than did the -ord *esus &hrist Himself.
4 Is the 1an the Head o* the Woman/
"s the man the head of the woman9 This appears on the
surface to be the plain statement of the followin) ScriptureC
1 CORITHIA! 11#$
$ 5ut I would ha6e (ou know- that the head o*
e6er( man is Christ+ and the head o* the woman is
the man+ and the head o* Christ is 0od.
Howe1er. loo+in) at that Scripture in some translations
other than the 8in) *ames will help 'ou see how it is actuall' in
a)reement with Ephesians :C4; which sa's. !For the husband is
the head of the wife*** * !
1 CORITHIA! 11#$ :WE21O;TH<
I would ha6e (ou know- howe6er- that o* e6er(
man Christ is the head- that the head o* a woman is
her hus,and- and that the head o* Christ is 0od.
1 CORITHIA! 11#$ :WORRE''<
5ut I wish (ou to know that the head o* e6er( man
is Christ- the head o* the wi*e is the hus,and- and
the head o* Christ is 0od.
ow. is e1er' man the head of e1er' woman9 !ssuredl'
notG ! man ma' be the head of one woman>his wife. But he is
not the head of e1er' woman.
" remember some of the thin)s a fellow preached durin) a
re1i1al meetin) in the last church " pastored. He wasn't 1er'
studious or he'd ha1e +nown better. He Bust s+immed o1er the
top of the Scriptures. li+e 'ou would pan for )old.
?Bac+ durin) the )old rush 'ou could )o into a stream of
water and pan out a little )old dust. But if 'ou reall' wanted to
ma+e a stri+e and )et down where the real )old was. 'ou had to
di) for it. "n the same wa' 'ou can s+im alon) on the top of
$2 The &oman 'uestion
Scriptures>but if 'ou reall' want to find out what the Bible
sa's. 'ou'll ha1e to di) down into the Word of 5od.A
" didn't correct this fellow as he preached some of these
thin)s from the pulpit. " +new the people would +now not to
accept it an'wa'. But e1en after we )ot bac+ to the parsona)e.
he wouldn't let )o of the subBect.
(inall'. " said to him. EBrother. that isn't what that
Scripture is sa'in).E
EOh. 'es.E he said. Eit sa's ri)ht here that the man is the
head of the woman. Men are the head of women in e1er'thin).E
Eo. no.E " said. Emen are not abo1e women in the -ord. "f
that were the case women could ne1er be sa1ed unless their
husbands told them the' could.E
He was the t'pe of fellow who is 1er' hard on the women.
He alwa's preached about the women. "n fact. he was a hard
indi1idual. His wife was not a partner. she was a doormat. He
wal+ed on her. Most of the time. fi)urati1el' spea+in). he had
his foot on her nec+ and the nec+s of their children as well.
E"n the first place.E " said to him. E'ou are not the head of
m' wife. " am.E
He had been tr'in) to tell the women. includin) m' wife.
how to dress. etc.
So " said. EWhile we're on the subBect. " want to tell 'ou
somethin) else. "t is none of 'our business whatsoe1er how m'
wife is dressed. That's m' business. !nd how m' wife wears her
hair is none of 'our business. nor is it the business of an' other
man in the church. nor an' other preacher an'where. "t is m'
business. She wears her hair to suit me. not 'ou. She dresses to
suit me. not 'ou. "f 'our wife wants to put up with all 'our
idios'ncrasies. that's her problem. But don't )o pushin) that off
on me or m' wife.
E!nd since 'ou brou)ht up the subBect. Bust la' off of it and
"s the ,an the Head of the &oman3 $4
don't sa' an'thin) more about it in this church. !s pastor "'m the
head of this church locall'. *esus is the head of the church
uni1ersall'. but "'m the shepherd of this local church and ha1e
authorit' here. ?5o1ernments is in the office of pastor.A So don't
sa' another word about the woman business while 'ou're here.E
The 5ree+ word used for man and for husband in the ew
Testament is the same word. aner* The 5ree+ of the ew
Testament had no separate word for husband. -i+ewise. it had
no word for wife. Therefore. the 5ree+ word for woman. gyne,
has been translated both as woman and as wife*
Hence. it must be determined b' the settin) which of these
si)nifications should be )i1en to the words in the En)lish
passa)e. (or instance. 'ou must tell from the conte/t whether it's
tal+in) about women in )eneral. or strictl' about wi1es.
Sometimes %aul is tal+in) about women in )eneral>but at other
times he's strictl' tal+in) about wi1es. !nd such passa)es
should be interpreted as relatin) to the role of a wife.
Our te/t ?2 &orinthians 22C;A cannot mean that e1er' man
stands in the same relationship to e1er' woman as &hrist does to
e1er' man. That could not be true.
&hrist is the head of the woman Bust as much as He is the
head of the man. "f He isn't>then the woman is not in the
church. (or &hrist is the head of the church.
"t is possible to ma+e the Bible sa' an'thin) 'ou want to
belie1e. o matter what 'ou want to belie1e. 'ou can find
Scriptures. misinterpret them. ta+e them out of their settin)s. and
ma+e them sa' whate1er 'ou want them to sa'.
! fellow came up to me recentl' after "'d made the
statement that the man is not the spiritual head of the woman.
EOh. 'es he is.E he said. EThe Bible sa's so. "t sa's that as
&hrist is the head of the church. so is the man the head of the
woman.E Then he as+ed me. E"s &hrist the spiritual head of the
$5 The &oman 'uestion
EYes.E " replied.
EThen the man is the spiritual head of the wife.E E!nd
&hrist is not her spiritual head9E " as+ed. Eo. He isn't.E
E"f &hrist is not her spiritual head. then she's not in the
church. is she9E
EOh. 'es. 'es.E he said. Eshe's in the church.E
EWell.E " said. Eif she is in the church. and a member of the
bod' of &hrist. then &hrist is her head>and not the man.E
%aul was simpl' illustratin) that from the famil'
standpoint. the domestic standpoint. the man is the head of the
wife. Bust as from the spiritual standpoint &hrist is the head of
the church. He is not sa'in) the husband is the wife's head
spirituall'. "f that were true. the born7a)ain wife of an unsa1ed
man would ha1e no spiritual head. &an 'ou see that9 But. praise
5od. she does ha1e a spiritual head>the -ord *esus &hristG
This same fellow went on to sa' that since the man is the
head of the woman. the wife should obe' and submit to her
husband in e1er'thin). He said to me. EE1en if a husband tells
his wife to sleep with another man. she should do it.E
That is stupidit'. The husband is not the lord of his wife's
conscience>her spirit. *esus is her -ord spirituall'. Bust as
much as He is the -ord of the man spirituall'.
The Bible sa's. !But he that is 6oined unto the )ord is one
s#irit! ?2 &orinthians =C2<A. !nd in the same chapter it sa's.
E ...he whi(h is 6oined to an harlot is one body3 for two, saith
he, shall be one flesh! ?1erse 2=A. The Scriptures use this same
terminolo)'. !and they two shall be one flesh,E re)ardin) the
husband and wife ?Ephesians :C;2A.
&an 'ou see how it is onl' in the husband7and7wife
relationship. in the domestic situation. that the husband is the
head of the wife9 (rom the spiritual standpoint. he or she who is
Boined unto the -ord is one spirit. with *esus as the spiritual
"s the ,an the Head of the &oman3 $7
head. The woman is a member of the bod' of &hrist Bust as
much as the man is. !nd &hrist is the spiritual head of the
woman. Bust as much as He is the spiritual head of the man.
E1er' woman can come to &hrist directl'. without the
mediation or consent of an' man. "'1e run across some recentl'
who sa' their wi1es are not e1en to pra' without their consent.
That's foolish. !n' woman can come to 5od without the
mediation or consent of her husband. or an' other man. She can
come into the same close personal fellowship with the -ord
*esus &hrist that an' man can. "n fact. man' women are wal+in)
in closer fellowship with &hrist than a lot of men.
But as a wife. in the natural human relationship. she has a
subordinate place in the famil'. ?She does not ha1e a
subordinate place in the bod' of &hrist. !nd this does not mean
that husband and wife are not e0ual before 5od.A (or the sa+e of
)ood order in the famil'. the husband should be the head of the
house. o intelli)ent woman should thin+ of marr'in) a man
who in her estimation is not worth' to ta+e that place.
5reat calamities mi)ht ha1e been a1erted if 5od's order in
famil' )o1ernment had been accepted and followed. The
husband is not to be contrar' and lord it o1er his wife. $ather
the' are to be helpers to)ether in all which concerns their
temporal and eternal welfare.
The husband must carr' the )reater responsibilit'. therefore
he should ha1e the hi)her authorit'. "f both husband and wife
are what the' should be. the husband will ta+e his place
naturall' as the head of the famil'. and it will be a Bo' to his
wife to see him there. o real woman wants a mere echo or a
puppet for a husband. "t should be the wife's deli)ht to submit
her will to her husband's when necessar'. rather than ma+e him
the lau)hin)stoc+ of his nei)hbors. There is no escape from the
plain teachin) of the Word of 5od on this point.
E7HE!IA! .#31%3.
.% The &oman 'uestion
31 !u,mitting (oursel6es one to another in the *ear
o* 0od.
33 Wi6es- su,mit (oursel6es unto (our own
hus,ands- as unto the 'ord.
3$ =or the hus,and is the head o* the wi*e- e6en as
Christ is the head o* the church# and he is the
!a6iour o* the ,od(.
3" There*ore as the church is su,4ect unto Christ-
so let the wi6es ,e to their own hus,ands in e6er(
3. Hus,ands- lo6e (our wi6es- e6en as Christ also
lo6ed the church- and ga6e himsel* *or it....
%aul is tal+in) to the whole church when he sa's.
!Submitting yoursel-es one to another*** E ?1erse 42A. #oes he
mean we're to lord it o1er one another in the church9 oG "t
means we're to )i1e in. and be a)reeable. and )et alon) with one
Then in the ne/t 1erse where it sa's. !&i-es, submit
yoursel-es unto your own husbands, as unto the )ord,! does it
mean the husband is to lord it o1er his wife9 that she is ne1er to
ha1e an' sa'7so9 oG "t means the' are to be a)reeable and
endea1or to )et alon) with each other.
The same 1erse ?2 &orinthians 22C;A which sa's that the
head of the woman is the man also sa's. EThe head of &hrist is
5od.E This does not mean &hrist is essentiall' and eternall'
inferior to 5od the (ather. His eternal e0ualit' with the (ather is
declared in the followin) passa)eH note 1erse =.
7HI'I77IA! 3#.%>
. 'et this mind ,e in (ou- which was also in Christ
& Who- ,eing in the *orm o* 0od- thought it not
ro,,er( to ,e e8ual with 0od#
"s the ,an the Head of the &oman3 .$
? 5ut made himsel* o* no re)utation- and took
u)on him the *orm o* a ser6ant- and was made in
the likeness o* men#
@ And ,eing *ound in *ashion as a man- he hum,led
himsel*- and ,ecame o,edient unto death- e6en the
death o* the cross.
> Where*ore 0od also hath highl( eAalted him- and
gi6en him a name which is a,o6e e6er( name#
But as our Sa1iour. as our sacrifice. and as our 1er' own
brother. He too+ a subordinate position and was in all thin)s
obedient to the (ather and submissi1e to His will.
The Scriptures beautifull' teach that when &hrist humbled
Himself and became obedient unto death. 5od hi)hl' e/alted
Him and placed Him at His own ri)ht hand. There &hrist e1er
li1es and ma+es intercession for us.
-i+ewise. when a man ?or womanA submits to the cross and
recei1es &hrist as Sa1iour. he is also raised and sits in the
hea1enlies with &hrist.
E7HE!IA! 3#"%&
" 5ut 0od- who is rich in merc(- *or his great lo6e
wherewith he lo6ed us-
. E6en when we were dead in sins- hath 8uickened
us together with Christ+ :,( grace (e are sa6ed+<
& And hath raised us u) together- and made us sit
together in hea6enl( )laces- in Christ 9esus...
&hrist is not under 5od>He was under Him>but is raised
up and seated beside Him at His ri)ht hand. Man>thou)h under
>when he was sa1ed and came to the cross and confessed *esus
as -ord. was raised with &hrist. and made to sit with Him. "t is
not a 1ertical matter. but a horiIontal one. The Word of 5od
sa's that we are heirs. sons of 5od. and Boint7heirs with &hrist.
*oint means e0ual. !nd the women are Boint7heirs as well as the
.. The &oman 'uestion
*esus pra'ed. !That they all may be one8 as thou, Father,
art in me, and " in thee, that they also may be one in us*** E ?*ohn
2<C42A. That includes wi1es who are belie1ers as well as
husbands who are belie1ers.
Much of what is heard on this subBect of submission cannot
be substantiated b' Scripture>but ta+es 1erses out of their
settin)s and ma+es them sa' somethin) the' don't sa'. "t ma+es
a woman feel inferior to the man. "t ma+es her feel she should
ta+e the place of a sla1e or ser1ant. "t binds instead of loosens.
!nd the Word of 5od clearl' states. !9e shall know the truth,
and the truth shall make you free! ?*ohn @C;4A. "t will ne1er
; 1ust Wi6es Alwa(s O,e( Their
"n this chapter we'll deal with onl' the last part of our te/t
Scripture. and the 0uestion. Must wi1es alwa's obe' their
1 CORITHIA! 1"#$"
$" 'et (our women kee) silence in the churches#
*or it is not )ermitted unto them to s)eak+ ,ut the(
are commanded to ,e under o,edience- as also
saith the law.
(or li)ht on this 1erse. %aul sends us to the law. !***as also
saith the law*E The word law, as used in the ew Testament.
refers to either. ?aA the Ten &ommandments. ?bA the fi1e boo+s
of Moses called the %entateuch. or. ?cA the entire Old Testament.
Since there is nothin) in the Ten &ommandments about the
ri)hts of women. %aul must ha1e been referrin) to the
%entateuch or the entire Old Testament. So. wh' don't we see
what the law sa's. ?Sometimes we Bust suppose we +now what
the law sa's. interpretin) it in the li)ht of our own thin+in)
rather than in the li)ht of what it actuall' sa's.A
$i)ht in the be)innin). in 5enesis. we see that 5od made
man and woman. Both men and women were to subdue and
ha1e dominion o1er e1er'thin) on earth ?5enesis 2C4=74@A. Wild
beasts ha1e the same instincti1e fear of women the' do of men.
Woman was not ta+en from !dam's feet. but from his side.
She is not to be downtrodden. as in heathen fashion. but to stand
at his side as in &hristian fashion ?5enesis 4C42744A.
!+nd the )ord /od said, "t is not good that the man should
be alone . . . E ?5enesis 4C2@A. 5od +new it wasn't )ood for
man to be without the help and inspiration of a woman. So He
made woman as a helpmeet. a helper worth' of him.
.: The &oman 'uestion
%aul reco)niIes that interdependence in the followin)
passa)e which " want to 0uote from We'mouth's translation
because it ma+es it clear to our understandin)C
1 CORITHIA! 11#@%>+ 11%13 :WE21O;TH<
1an does not originate *rom woman- ,ut woman
*rom man. =or man was not created *or womanBs
sake- ,ut woman *or manBs.... 2et- in the 'ord-
woman is not inde)endent o* man nor man o*
woman. =or 4ust as woman originates *rom man- so
also man has his ,irth through woman+ ,ut
e6er(thing comes ultimatel( *rom 0od.
"n the 5enesis account of &reation. there is no si)n of
ine0ualit' between man and woman.
!fter the Fall, howe1er. a curse was laid upon the wife.
"saac -eeser's translation from the ori)inal Hebrew ma+es it
0EE!I! $#1& :'EE!ER< . . . I will greatl( multi)l(
th( )ain and :the su**ering o*< th( conce)tion+ in
)ain shalt thou ,ring *orth children# and *or th(
hus,and shall ,e th( desire- ,ut he shall rule o6er
This was both penalt' and prophec'. !nd this curse fell
upon E1e. not as a woman. but as a wife.
Women are not subordinate to men. "t is a husband7and7
wife proposition. Wi1es do ha1e a subordinate place in the
famil'. The' do not ha1e a subordinate place in the -ord.
The Bible sa's. E . . . there is neither male nor female;
for ye are all one in <hrist Jesus! ?5alatians ;C4@A.
Women are called Esons of 5odE Bust as much as men are.
*ohn was writin) to the entire church>not Bust to the men>
when he said. !Belo-ed, now are we the sons of /od*** E ?2 *ohn
,ust &i-es +lways =bey Their Husbands3 .>
That 1erse continues. E . . . and it doth not yet a##ear
what we shall be; but we know that, when he shall a##ear, we
shall be like him8 for we shall see him as he is* E The women
will be li+e Him Bust as much as the men will be.
-et's e/amine some of the husbands and wi1es as recorded
in the law.
%eter cites Sarah as a model wife whose worth' e/ample
&hristian wi1es could follow. !-en as Sarah obeyed +braham,
(alling him lord; whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well,
and are not afraid with any ama?ement! ?2 %eter ;C=A.
"t is possible to lift this one 1erse out and sa'. ESee. the
wife is to obe' her husband Bust as Sarah obe'ed !braham.E But
does it mean the wife doesn't ha1e an' ri)ht to spea+ her own
mind9 Some would lea1e the impression the wife ne1er has a
ri)ht to e/press her thou)hts. that she's under the rule>the
obedience>the domination>and is nothin) much more than a
sla1e. But that isn't what %eter is sa'in). -et's see what the law
0EE!I! 1&#.- &
. And !arai said unto A,ram- 1( wrong ,e u)on
thee# I ha6e gi6en m( maid into th( ,osom+ and
when she saw that she had concei6ed- I was
des)ised in her e(es# the 'ord 4udge ,etween me
and thee.
& 5ut A,ram said unto !arai- 5ehold- th( maid is
in th( hand+ do to her as it )leaseth thee. And when
!arai dealt hardl( with her- she *led *rom her *ace.
Here we see !bram lettin) Sarai ha1e her own wa'. He
isn't dominatin) her li+e some warlord.
(rom the 2=th chapter of 5enesis throu)h the 42st. there is
.2 The &oman 'uestion
an account of a disa)reement. !t its clima/. we see that
!braham )a1e in to his wife's contention. and let her ha1e her
own wa'. !nd we see that 5od Bustified not him. but her.
0EE!I! 31#1D%13
1D Where*ore she said unto A,raham- Cast out this
,ondwoman and her son# *or the son o* this
,ondwoman shall not ,e heir with m( son- e6en
with Isaac.
11 And the thing was 6er( grie6ous in A,rahamBs
sight ,ecause o* his son.
13 And 0od said unto A,raham- 'et it not ,e
grie6ous in th( sight- ,ecause o* the lad- and
,ecause o* th( ,ondwoman+ in all that !arah hath
said unto thee- hearken unto her 6oice+ *or in Isaac
shall th( seed ,e called.
5od told !braham. one time at least. to listen to his wife.
!ccordin) to this. Sarah ruled her husband on this occasion.
!nd 5od appro1ed of it. !s He alwa's does when a wife is
5od alwa's appro1es of ri)ht. Some ministers. (ull7
5ospel. Spirit7filled. "'m ashamed to sa'. ha1e told me a woman
ou)ht to do whate1er her husband sa's. no matter what. The'
ha1e told me personall' that if the husband tells his wife to sleep
with another man. she ou)ht to do it. because the Bible sa's for
her to obe' him. That is an insult to m' intelli)ence. 5od will
ne1er side in with wron). !nd that would be 1iolatin) one of
His Ten &ommandments.
One fellow said to me. E"f a husband as+s his wife to drin+
with him. she ou)ht to drin+ with him. "f he wants her to )o to
the bar. she should )o.E ?These thin)s ha1e been said to me
personall'>"'m not tal+in) about what somebod' comes to me
and says somebod' said. You can understand that these thin)s
ha1e created no little confusion.A One said. E"f an unsa1ed
,ust &i-es +lways =bey Their Husbands3 .4
husband tells his wife not to )o to church. she's not to )o. "f he
tells her not to read the Bible. she's not to read it. She is to obe'
him to the letter.E
" sa'. EBosh and tomm'rotGE
%eter )a1e Sarah as an e/ample. -et's ta+e it then. When
Sarah was ri)ht. 5od sided in with her. 5od is not )oin) to side
in with the husband when the husband is wron)>an' more than
He will side in with the wife when she is wron).
Than+ 5od for )ood wi1esG The' don't need to be put
down. Oh. " +now there are some boss' wi1es. but if their
husbands don't +now how to ta+e care of them. let them )o
ahead and be henpec+ed. You see. it is the husband's problem.
There's no use in down)radin) all wi1es because of a few
e/ceptions. !nd it is the responsibilit' of the husbands to ta+e
care of that>not the responsibilit' of the preachers. "f a man
wants to be henpec+ed. it's his business. and no one else's. " ha1e
no more business tr'in) to mana)e another man's wife than "
ha1e mana)in) some other fellow's mone'. We can la' down
principles. of course. But " thin+ there are some men who rather
enBo' bein) henpec+ed. "f the' do>let them enBo' it. " don't li+e
it m'self.
Yet " respect m' wife. and " respect her opinion. !nd once
she had to put her foot down and spea+ up to me. 5od had dealt
with me bac+ in 236< and '6@ about lea1in) the pastorate and
)oin) out in a field ministr'. He had spo+en to me about
healin). and had )i1en me some instructions about ministerin)
to the sic+. "t was the burden of m' heart.
But " made a mista+e>" went to the wron) meetin). ?You
can ma+e a mista+e sometimes )oin) to the wron) church. the
wron) con1ention. the wron) meetin).A "t was a midwinter
pra'er7and7Bible conference. !lmost e1er' person who
preached spo+e a)ainst healin) meetin)s. !nd at the last. the
man who stood at the head 1entured to sa' that Bust one person
shouldn't pra' for the sic+. Bust one indi1idual shouldn't la'
.5 The &oman 'uestion
hands on them>that e1er'one should pra' and la' hands on
them. and then when 5od healed them He'd )et all the )lor'.
E1er'thin) " heard down)raded me. " can understand how
women must feel at times>the''1e )one to church and heard a
bunch of stuff. and wished the' hadn't )one.
Well. after two or three da's. " went bac+ home. M'
resi)nation had alread' been submitted. and m' wife had been
pac+in) while " was awa'.
E*ust unpac+.E " said. Ewe're not )oin).E
EYou're not9E
Eo. "'m not. The church wants me to sta' and "'ll Bust sta'.
!nd another thin)>from this moment on. "'m ne1er )oin) to
pra' for the sic+ a)ain. "'ll ne1er la' hands on another person the
lon)est da' " li1e. "f someone Bust insists on bein) anointed with
oil. "'ll )et the deacons to come and anoint him.E
M' wife could see that " was out of sorts. EoGE she said.
EWe're not )oin) to sta' with this church.E
" was ta+en abac+. She'd ne1er acted li+e that in her life.
!nd she hasn't acted that wa' since. But she needed to act that
wa' on this occasion. and 5od sided in with her.
Eo>"'m not )oin) to unpac+.E she said. E!nd 'es>we
are )oin) to lea1e this church. !nd 'es>'ou are )oin) to obe'
5od. That's what 'ou're )oin) to doGE
" stood there speechless. She didn't ordinaril' tal+ li+e that.
But. to tell the truth about it. if she'd let me rule o1er the
situation. we'd ha1e both been in a mess. She was ri)ht. !nd she
put a little 1i)or into me. " went ahead and obe'ed 5od.
Sarah ruled o1er her husband in the situation we read>and
5od appro1ed of it. M' wife ruled o1er me on this occasion>
and 5od appro1ed of it. 5od alwa's sides in with ri)ht. He will
ne1er ta+e the part of wron). "f He did>then He would be
,ust &i-es +lways =bey Their Husbands3 .7
#id 'ou notice too that Sarah did not suffer in silence and
ser1ile subBection. but she spo+e her mind as she had a ri)ht to
do. Eas also saith the law.E "t is recorded in the %entateuch.
The first chapter of 2 Samuel records that when Hannah.
the mother of Samuel. had a little difference with her husband.
she spo+e her mind and had her wa'. "t pro1ed out to be 5od's
!bi)ail was a wise woman whose husband was a fool.
?There are some cases li+e that.A The Bible calls him a Eson of
Belial.E B' disobe'in) her husband. she sa1ed a critical situation
and won the fa1or of #a1id. "f she'd listened to her husband.
there would ha1e been much bloodshed.
1 !A1;E' 3.#$3%$$
$3 And Ea6id said to A,igail- 5lessed ,e the 'ord
0od o* Israel- which sent thee this da( to meet me#
$$ And ,lessed ,e th( ad6ice- and ,lessed ,e thou-
which hast ke)t me this da( *rom coming to shed
,lood- and *rom a6enging m(sel* with mine own
$ead the whole stor' from 'our Bible and notice that 5od
is standin) on the side with !bi)ail>e1en thou)h she
disobeyed her husband.
"t is not a sane ar)ument that e-ery wife must always obe'
her husband in e-erything* "n chapter two " made reference to an
incident when a man. a Bible teacher. came up to tal+ with me
after " had said that the husband is not -ord o1er his wife. and
that *esus is her spiritual head. He further said. ETurn to
Ephesians :C46.E !nd then he read to me. ETherefore as the
church is subBect unto &hrist. so let the wi1es be to their own
husbands in e1er' thin).E
1% The &oman 'uestion
He emphasiIed as he read. Ein e1er' thin).E
E! wife.E he said. Eis to obe' her husband in e1er'thin).E
!nd that's when he said that e1en if the husband tells her to
sleep with another man. she is to do it. He put hea1' emphasis
on the fact that it didn't specif' the husband had to be a &hristian
husband. !nd that it Bust said the wife was to obe'. EE1en if her
husband is unsa1ed. whate1er he sa's to do. she must do.E
!nd he clun) to that one 1erse to support his 1iews. But the
Word of 5od plainl' tells us that in the mouth of two or three
witnesses shall e1er' word be established ?#euteronom' 2<C=H
23C2:H 4 &orinthians 2;C2A. You must consider the teachin)s of
the entire Bible. We're not to ta+e an isolated te/t and build
some doctrine on it.
" want to repeat>it is not a sane ar)ument to sa' e-ery
wife must always obe' her husband in e-erything* Some men
are such brutes the' would re0uire thin)s of their wi1es which
should not be )ranted. "f an enra)ed husband commanded his
wife to +ill their children. no sane person would sa' she should
obe'. Well. if she shouldn't obe' that. there are a lot of other
thin)s she shouldn't obe'>because the' are wron)G !
-O$#'S &OMM!#METS.
Smith Wi))lesworth. a man mi)htil' used of 5od said.
EUnder 5od. all " am in m' entire ministr' " owe to m' dear
wife.E He went on to tell that when he was a successful plumber
in En)land )rowin) prosperous from plumbin) the old mansions
and houses there. he was wor+in) sometimes se1en da's a wee+.
He said he )rew cold in spirit. and reall' Bust bac+slid.
ow when 'ou bac+slide and )et out of fellowship with
5od. 'ou're not so interested in the thin)s of 5od. !nd when
someone else is. it brin)s con1iction on 'ou.
EYou )o to church too much.E he told his wife.
EYou're not to )o an' more. " +now enou)h about the Bible
,ust &i-es +lways =bey Their Husbands3 1$
to +now the man is the head of the wife. You're to obe' me. !nd
" sa'. '#on't )o to church.' so 'ou're not )oin).E
She smiled sweetl' and said. Eow. Smith. 'ou're the head
of this house. and 'ou're m' husband. Whate1er 'ou sa' in the
house )oes. !nd 'ou +now as well as " do that " do not ne)lect
'ou. or the children. or the house in an' wa'. But 'ou are not
m' -ord. *esus is m' -ord. !nd the Bible tells us not to forsa+e
the assemblin) of oursel1es to)ether. The Bible tells me to )o to
church. and "'m )oin).E
EWell.E he related. E"'d fume and fuss and practicall' cuss.
!nd finall' one da' " told her. '"f 'ou )o toni)ht>"'ll loc+ 'ou
out.' But she went ri)ht alon)>and " loc+ed her out. She didn't
ha1e a +e' and couldn't )et in. The ne/t mornin) " came
downstairs. opened the bac+ door. and there she was. all bundled
up in her coat. leanin) bac+ up a)ainst the door. She'd been
there all ni)ht. When " opened the door. she almost fell into the
+itchen. But she bounded up. smiled. and said. 'Well. dear. how
are 'ou this mornin)9'
EShe was so +ind and sweet. but "'d ha1e felt better if she'd
chewed on me a little. She didn't thou)h. She Bust as+ed. 'What
would 'ou li+e for brea+fast9' !nd she fi/ed m' fa1orite
E'!ll ri)ht. all ri)ht.' " said. '"'m wron). " missed it.'
She had Bust lo1ed me bac+ to 5od. But at the same time.
she stood her )round. "f she had 0uit church and followed me.
we'd ha1e both been in trouble.E
"'1e seen that happen. "n the twel1e 'ears " pastored "'1e
heard women sa'. EM' husband doesn't want me to come to
church. He wants me to )o here and do such7and7such. " thou)ht
ma'be " mi)ht win him.E !nd " saw those women bac+slide
ri)ht with their husbands. Some did )et bac+ into fellowship
with 5od e1entuall'. but " don't remember a one whose husband
)ot sa1ed.
1. The &oman 'uestion
But on the other hand. " remember man' faithful little
women in those churches who had bullies for husbands that had
forbidden them to come to church.
One little woman in particular. what a time she had. But if
'ou needed inspiration. if 'ou were tr'in) to preach and the
ser1ice seemed dead>all 'ou had to do was loo+ at her. and
she'd inspire 'ou to preach. Her face was alwa's lit up li+e a
neon si)n.
One ni)ht m' wife said to me. EHone'. did 'ou notice
Sister Mar''s feet9E
Eo. " didn't. Was somethin) wron) with them9E
EWell.E she said. Eshe Bust had on )aloshes.E
E5aloshesG "t hasn't rained in a month. Wh' did she wear
her )aloshes9E
E*oe didn't want her to come to church. He was an)r' and
he hid her shoes.E
He thou)ht that if he hid her shoes she wouldn't )o. But she
put on her )aloshes and came ahead. "'m certain that if he'd
thrown awa' her )aloshes. she'd ha1e come barefoot.
She was a mee+ little woman. but " remember her sa'in) to
me. E" don't want to dominate him in an' wa'. He's m' husband
and " respect him. He's the father of m' children and " teach
them to respect him. But he's not ta+in) the place he should
ta+e. He isn't interested in the thin)s of 5od and won't come to
church. "t loo+s li+e "'m )oin) to ha1e to lead in these thin)s.
!m " wron)9E
Eo.E " said. E'ou're not wron). You're ri)ht.E
She stood her )round. !fterwards she told me how she'd
said. E*oe. "'m not tr'in) to ta+e an' authorit' awa' from 'ou.
But "'m )oin) to +eep these children in Sunda' school and
church. "f the' followed 'ou the''d be )amblin) and drin+in).
!nd another thin). we ou)ht to pra' at the table. We Bust sit
,ust &i-es +lways =bey Their Husbands3 11
down and start eatin) li+e a bunch of ho)s. Before we eat. "'m
)oin) to pra'.E
She didn't as+ him if she could>she said. E"'m )oin) to do
it.E !nd the ne/t meal. she did Bust that. One of the children
peeped and told her. EMama. #add' Bust sat there and stared
strai)ht ahead li+e he was mad.E But. after a few times. he
started bowin) his head and closin) his e'es alon) with them.
Then she told me how a little later on she said to him. E*oe.
we ou)ht to read the Bible in this home. and it should be 'our
place. But 'ou're not doin) it. so before we retire e1er' ni)ht "'m
)oin) to read a chapter and pra' with the children. "f 'ou're
here. 'ou should ha1e enou)h respect for me and the children to
sit down and listen.E
She said that sometimes he would listen. But at first. when
she and the children )ot on their +nees to pra'. he'd Bust sit there.
!fter a while. thou)h. he would )et off his chair and +neel. too.
Than+ 5od she made her standG !s far as " +now. e1er'
one of her children was a &hristian. !nd someone told me in
later 'ears that old *oe )ot sa1ed when he was nearl' si/t'.
You will ne1er ma+e it compromisin) with the de1il in an'
wa'G We need some balance in these thin)s. ! husband cannot
countermand an' of the -ord's commandments. He is not the
-ord o1er his wife's conscience>the -ord *esus &hrist is.
! wife must be true to her con1ictions>e1en. if necessar'.
at the cost of losin) her husband if he will not endure her true
de1otion to &hrist.
1 CORITHIA! ?#1.
1. 5ut i* the un,elie6ing de)art- let him de)art. A
,rother or a sister is not under ,ondage in such
cases# ,ut 0od hath called us to )eace.
1: The &oman 'uestion
1 7ETER $#1%? :WE21O;TH< 1arried women- in the
same wa(- ,e su,missi6e to (our hus,ands- so that
e6en i* some o* them dis,elie6e the word- the( ma(-
a)art *rom the word- ,e won o6er ,( the dail( li*e
o* their wi6es- a*ter seeing (our dail( li6es so chaste
and re6erent. 2ours ought not to ,e outward
adornment o* )laiting the hair- )utting on 4ewels o*
gold- or wearing 6arious dresses- ,ut an inward
,eaut( o* nature- the im)erisha,le ornament o* a
gentle and )eace*ul s)irit- which is indeed )recious
in the sight o* 0od. =or this is how o* old the hol(
women who set their ho)es u)on 0od used to
adorn themsel6es- ,eing su,missi6e to their
hus,ands. Thus !arah o,e(ed A,raham- calling
him master. And (ou ha6e ,ecome !arahBs
children i* (ou do right and )ermit nothing
whate6er to terri*( (ou.
Husbands. in the same wa'. li1e with 'our wi1es with a
clear reco)nition of the fact that the' are wea+er than 'ou. Yet.
since 'ou are heirs with them of 5od's free )ift of -ife. treat
them with honourH so that 'our pra'ers ma' be unrestrained.
The ew Testament 5ree+ word translated into En)lish as
submit, sub6e(t, submit yoursel-es, is hu#otasso* "t is used in 2
%eter ;C2. and elsewhere in re)ard to &hristians submittin)
themsel1es to one another. %aul uses it in 2 &orinthians 2=C2=.
!That ye submit yoursel-es unto su(h, and to e-ery one that
hel#eth with us, and laboureth*! !nd in Ephesians he used it.
!Submitting yoursel-es one to another in the fear of /od* &i-es,
submit yoursel-es unto your own husbands, as unto the )ord!
?Ephesians :C42. 44A.
What +ind of subBection is meant9 %aul certainl' did not
mean the brethren were to be sla1es to each other. but that the'
,ust &i-es +lways =bey Their Husbands3 1>
should tr' to please one another in as far as possible. thus
a1oidin) disputes. contentions. and di1isions. That's all he meant
when he said. ESubmit.E
You see. it is a subBection of lo1e to the rule of lo1e.
6 1ust Women Kee) !ilence in the
1 CORITHIA! 1"#$"%$&
$" 'et (our women kee) silence in the churches#
*or it not )ermitted unto them to s)eak+ ,ut the(
are commanded to ,e under o,edience- as also
saith the law.
$. And i* the( will learn an( thing- let them ask
their hus,ands at home# *or it is a shame *or
women to s)eak in the church.
$& What/ came the word o* 0od out *rom (ou/ or
came into unto (ou onl(/
!s " brou)ht out pre1iousl'. in the ori)inal 5ree+ there is
onl' one word for man>none for husbandH and onl' one 5ree+
word for woman>none for wife. You must determine from the
conte/t whether it is tal+in) about women in general, or
specificall' about wi-es*
Ferse ;6. for instance. is not tal+in) about all women. "t
couldn't be. because the ne/t 1erse sa's. !"f they will learn
anything, let them ask their husbands*** !
!ll women don't ha1e husbands. Unmarried women are
certainl' not included in this te/t. The 5ree+ wor+ gyne should
ha1e been rendered here as wi-es* !)et your wi-es kee#
silen(e*** * ! !. S. Worrell translates these 1erses. E-et 'our
wi1es +eep silence in the assemblies. for it is not permitted unto
them to spea+. But let them be in subBection as also saith the
law. !nd if the' wish to learn an'thin). let them as+ their own
husbands at home. (or it is a shame for a wife to spea+ in an
The other famous te/t on this subBect is much li+e our first
15 The &oman 'uestion
1 TI1OTH2 3#11%1.
11 'et the woman learn in silence with all
13 5ut I su**er not a woman to teach- nor to usur)
authorit( o6er the man- ,ut to ,e in silence.
1$ =or Adam was *irst *ormed- then E6e.
1" And Adam was not decei6ed- ,ut the woman
,eing decei6ed was in the transgression.
1. otwithstanding- she shall ,e sa6ed in child%
,earing- i* the( continue in *aith- and charit(- and
holiness- with so,riet(.
$ememberin) these thin)s about our te/ts will help 'ou
understand themC ?2A %aul is not tal+in) about all women. but
about wi1es. ?4A He is tal+in) about learning something and
asking @uestions ?2 &orinthians 26C;:. 2 Timoth' 4C22A.
Translate the 5ree+ word gyne as wife, rather than woman.
and these te/ts will ma+e sense to 'ou. "n Timoth'. %aul refers
to !dam and E1e. a husband and a wife. He's dealin) with a
husband7and7wife proposition.
You see. there is reall' no )reat dan)er of women in
)eneral dictatin) to. domineerin). or usurpin) authorit' o1er
men in )eneral. But wi1es ha1e been +nown to subBect their
husbands to such indi)nit'. !nd %aul is sa'in) the wife is not to
dictate to her husband. or usurp authorit' o1er him.
The women in that da' had little or no education. %aul
ad1ised the wi1es if the' would learn an'thin). to as+ their
husbands at home>thus impl'in) the men were better informed
than the women.
!las. this is not alwa's true now. Man' women would die
in hopeless i)norance of the principles of our hol' faith if the'
depended on what crude. half7ba+ed. pernicious. and fallacious
ideas their husbands could communicate to them.
,ust &omen Kee# Silen(e in the <hur(hes3 17
The 'aw o* !cri)tural Inter)retation
E6er( !cri)ture must ,e inter)reted in the light of what
other !cri)ture sa(s on the same su,4ectFit must harmoniGe
with all other !cri)ture. Much error has resulted from i)norin)
this law of interpretation. That's how people ha1e )otten into
difficult' on our subBect. as well as others. The interpretation we
put on our te/t Scriptures must harmoniIe with all other
You can lift 1erses out of their settin)s. i)nore the law of
interpretation. and ma+e them sa' an'thin) 'ou want them to
There ha1e been some wonderful men. with beautiful
spirits of lo1e. baptiIed with the Hol' 5host. who were )reat
witnesses and blessin)s to others>for a while. But then the' )ot
off into error because the' did not interpret Scripture in the li)ht
of other Scriptures.
One such man told me how 5od had brou)ht him a )reat
re1elation. ?$e1elation is all ri)ht if it is in line with the Word.
"f it isn't>for)et it.A He thou)ht he had a )reat re1elation which
no one else +new about. But some of us ha1e been in %entecost a
mi)ht' lon) time. and we'1e seen certain thin)s come up e1er'
now and then>and then fall. Such was the case with his
re1elation. The''d put 1arious prett' names on it>$estoration.
Eternal $estoration. Ultimate $econciliation. etc. "n essence it
was that e1er'thin) is )oin) to be restored. and e1er'bod' is
)oin) to be sa1ed. One such )roup tau)ht that e1en the e1il
spirits. and possibl' the de1il. would be sa1ed. !nd the' pic+
out a few 1erses of Scripture which the' thin+ sa' that.
!nother man. with the same re1elation. was so thrilled
when he told me what he'd Efound out from the Bible.E " could
tell from his breath he'd been drin+in). and he'd curse and use
5od's name in 1ain as he tal+ed. But he was so happ' and
lau)hed as he told me. EOur preacher preached>and "'1e found
:% The &oman 'uestion
out from the Bible it is true>that e1er'bod''s )oin) to be sa1ed.
"t doesn't ma+e an' difference what 'ou do. "sn't it wonderfulG
You +now. the Bible sa's that with 5od all thin)s are possible.
!nd the Bible sa's that 5od's not willin) that an' should perish.
!re all thin)s possible to 5od9E EYes.E " answered.
E"s 5od all7powerful9 all7+nowin)9 all7wise9E EYes.E
E&an He do an'thin)9E EYes.E
EWell. He's plainl' said He's not willin) that an' should
perish. so nobod''s )oin) to perish. E1er'bod' will be sa1edG
"'1e been so thrilled since " found that out.E
! (ull 5ospel minister who for man' 'ears had a real
ministr' in )ettin) people sa1ed and baptiIed in the Hol' 5host
)ot off into the same error. E(or 'ears.E he said. E" thou)ht m'
alcoholic uncle who died cursin) 5od went to hell. But now "'1e
found out he went to hea1en. He's sa1ed because 5od's not
willin) that an' should perish. and 5od's all7powerful. " used to
tal+ to him 'ears a)o about acceptin) &hrist. but he'd curse me
and send me on m' wa'. He ne1er did ma+e a profession of
&hrist. But " +now now he went strai)ht throu)h to the )lor'
&an 'ou see the' use Scripture all ri)ht9 With 5od all
thin)s are possible ?Matthew 23C4=. Mar+ 2DC4<A. 5od is not
willin) that an' should perish ?4 %eter ;C3A. &an 5od do
an'thin)9 "s He all7powerful9 &ertainl'G But the' belabored the
point. The' didn't harmoniIe these Scriptures with other
The -ord *esus &hrist said that some fol+s are )oin) to be
lost. He said. !/o ye into all the world, and #rea(h the gos#el to
e-ery (reature* He that belie-eth and is ba#ti?ed shall be sa-ed8
but he that belie-eth not shall be damned! ?Mar+ 2=C2:. 2=A.
o. the e/treme teachin) of ultimate reconciliation is
erroneous. de1ilish. misleadin). and does dama)e to the bod' of
&hrist. !nd " wanted to use it as an illustration.
,ust &omen Kee# Silen(e in the <hur(hes3 :$
ow comin) bac+ to this woman 0uestion. can't 'ou see
that 'ou can do the same thin) with this9 When one man tried to
ma+e his point with a 1erse of Scripture he was clin)in) to. "
pointed out to him another Scripture. EWell.E he said. Ethere ma'
ha1e been some e/ceptions. But this is the wa' 5od wants it.E
oG "f an interpretation doesn't harmoniIe with all other
Scriptures. then the interpretation is wron).
1 CORITHIA! 11#.
. 5ut e6er( woman that )ra(eth or )ro)hesieth
with her head unco6ered- dishonoureth her head#
*or that is e6en all one as i* she were sha6en.
%aul is tal+in) here about women pra'in) and prophes'in)
in church. Some people thin+ that to prophes' means to preach.
!nd reall' it is one phase of preachin). "f while 'ou preach 'ou
sa' somethin) under the inspiration of the Spirit of 5od. 'ou are
prophes'in). ow. was %aul illo)ical enou)h>especiall'
writin) under the inspiration of the Hol' 5host>to tell women
the' could pra' and prophes' ?or e1en preachA in the 22th
chapter>and then come o1er to the 26th chapter and tell them
to be 0uiet9
ACT! 3#1&- 1?
1& 5ut this is that which was s)oken ,( the )ro)het
1? And it shall come to )ass in the last da(s- saith
0od- I will )our out o* m( !)irit u)on all *lesh#
and (our sons and (our daughters shall )ro)hes(-
and (our (oung men shall see 6isions- and (our old
men shall dream dreams#
1@ And on m( ser6ants and on m( handmaidens- I
will )our out in those da(s o* m( !)irit+ and the(
shall )ro)hes(.
Hundreds of 'ears before the da' of %entecost. the %rophet
:. The &oman 'uestion
*oel prophesied it sa'in). !+nd it shall (ome to #ass afterward,
that " will #our out my S#irit u#on all flesh . . . E ?*oel 4C4@A.
!nd %eter said on the da' of %entecost. EThis is the fulfillment
of *oel's prophec'.E
We still li1e in that dispensation toda'>the Hol' 5host
dispensation. 5od has poured out of His Spirit upon all flesh>
which includes women as well as men. E ... 'our sons and 'our
dau)hters shall prophes'... . E The dau)hters will prophes' as
well as the sons.
!s a 'oun) Baptist pastor. when " first came around (ull
5ospel people. " fellowshiped with them primaril' around
di1ine healin). " sort of closed m' ears to other thin)s the'
tau)ht. But " +new the' had re1elation on di1ine healin) no
other churches " +new of had. "'d been healed b' the power of
5od. and had been standin) in faith alone>so when " found
these fol+s. it stren)thened m' faith to fellowship with them. !s
a Baptist pastor " would attend e1er' (ull 5ospel ser1ice " could
)et to.
Some of m' collea)ues amon) the Baptists warned me
a)ainst these %entecostal people. One man in particular. a
seminar' )raduate. whom "'d +nown all m' life. said to me one
ni)ht as we discussed it for hours. EYou ou)ht to be careful now.
8enneth. about )oin) around those (ull 5ospel people. "'ll admit
the''re )ood people. !nd "'ll admit the' li1e stricter and
strai)hter li1es than most fol+s in our own church do. But.E he
warned. Ethat spea+in) with ton)ues is of the de1il.E
E"s it9E
EYes. it is.E
EWell now.E " said. Eit seems a little stran)e to me that
people could ha1e somethin) from the de1il and it would help
them li1e better li1es. The wa' "'m able to ascertain it. the wor+s
of the de1il ma+e people worse>not better.E
?" didn't see spea+in) with ton)ues then as " do now. but
,ust &omen Kee# Silen(e in the <hur(hes3 :1
instead of hinderin) me. he helped me to see that it must be
EThose %entecostal people.E he went on to sa'. Eha1e )ot to
be wron).E
EWh'9E " as+ed.
EThe''1e e1en )ot women preachers.E
EThe' do9E
EYes. The' let women teach. testif'. and ta+e a prominent
place ri)ht in the 1er' church ser1ice. !nd that is wron).E
E"s it9E
EYes. it's wron) for women to preach. or ta+e the lead in
an' wa'. The Bible sa's. '-et 'our women +eep silence in the
church.... E'
EOur women don't.E
EOh. well.E he said. Ewe let them teach o1er in the Sunda'
school buildin). but not in the church.E
EThat's ridiculousGE " said. E!nd it's e/actl' what *esus said
the *ews were doin). The''d sa'. 'Oh. the temple is hol' here
ri)ht around the altar>but the rest of it's not hol'. You can do
what 'ou want to out there.
You can sell sheep and cheat people out there.' But *esus
too+ a whip and dro1e out the mone' chan)ers.
EThat Sunda'7school anne/.E " went on. Eis Bust as hol' as
the sanctuar'. !nd besides that. as far as ha1in) church is
concerned. it's where two or three are )athered that the''re
ha1in) church. "t's not the buildin). The buildin) is Bust a place
to meet.E
?The church under the new co1enant is not confined to an'
buildin). %aul wrote se1eral times. as did others. about the
church in So7and7so's house. You can ha1e church in the open
:: The &oman 'uestion
air. a barn loft. downtown in a little mission. in a tent. or in a
)reat cathedral.A
Bein) Baptist. " +new this Bible teacher thou)ht that to
prophes' meant to preach. !nd. as " said. there is an element of
truth in that. Howe1er. all prophes'in) is not preachin)>and all
preachin) is not prophes'in). But " +new he thou)ht that when
the Bible spo+e of prophes'in). it meant preachin). So " said.
E%eter 0uoted *oel's prophec' on the da' of %entecost that under
this dispensation the dau)hters will prophes' as well as the sons.
To prophes' means to preach. doesn't it9 "s it wron) for them to
EUh7h7h7h. Uh7h7h7h. "'ll ha1e to )i1e that a little more
thou)ht.E he said.
EWhile we're on the subBect.E " said. Elet me sa' somethin)
else. We send women missionaries. !nd those women
missionaries teach and preach on forei)n fields. The' teach
other women and men as well as children. One of our recent
mission ma)aIines told about a mission station where there is no
man. ! lad' is headin) it up. $eall' she's headin) up what 'ou'd
call a local church. and we'1e put our stamp of appro1al on it.
E" belie1e it's inconsistent to sa' to them. '-adies. 'ou can't
tal+ o1er here. You can't spea+ in the main assembl'. We won't
ordain 'ou. ?Some ha1e since been ordained. This was fort'
'ears a)o.A You ha1e to be 0uiet. But we reco)niIe the call of
5od on 'our life. so we'll send 'ou to the mission field. You
can't teach or preach to men o1er here. but 'ou can o1er there.'
Then we send them to the front lines. where it's the hardest.
What's the difference.E " as+ed him. Eof preachin) to the heathen
o1er there and preachin) to the heathen here9E
ACT! 1#1$- 1"
1$ And when the( were come in- the( went u) into
an u))er room- where a,ode ,oth 7eter- and
9ames- and 9ohn- and Andrew- 7hili)- and
,ust &omen Kee# Silen(e in the <hur(hes3 :>
Thomas- 5artholomew- and 1atthew- 9ames the
son o* Al)haeus- and !imon Helotes- and 9udas the
,rother o* 9ames.
1" These all continued with one accord in )ra(er
and su))lication- with the women- and 1ar( the
mother o* 9esus- and with his ,rethren.
There were 24D indi1iduals>both men and women>
)athered to)ether in the upper room at *erusalem. When
%entecost was full' come. the Spirit descended on them and the'
were all filled and all spo+e with ton)ues>aloud. That
%entecost mornin) was one )lorious mornin) when the women
were not silentG
EYes.E someone mi)ht sa'. Ebut that was in the upper
The' were ha1in) church Bust as much as 'ou can ha1e
church in an' auditorium. The room doesn't ma+e the church.
"t's the indi1iduals )athered to)ether to pra' and to worship 5od
that ma+e it church>e1en if it's in 'our li1in) room.
There must ha1e been women present at &ornelius's house.
"n %eter's account of what happened he tells how an an)el from
5od appeared to &ornelius and told him to. !Send men to Jo##a,
and (all for Simon, whose surname is Peter8 &ho shall tell thee
words, whereby thou and all thy house shall be sa-ed! ?!cts
22C2;. 26A.
ow all of &ornelius's house consisted of more than Bust
men. "t consisted of his wife. the sons. the dau)hters. etc. !nd
when %eter came there. the' had church. "t mi)ht ha1e been in
their house. but the' were still ha1in) church. The Word was
bein) preached.
ACT! 1D#""%"&
"" While 7eter (et s)ake these words- the Hol(
0host *ell on all them which heard the word.
:2 The &oman 'uestion
". And the( o* the circumcision which ,elie6ed-
were astonished- as man( as came with 7eter-
,ecause that on the 0entiles also was )oured out
the gi*t o* the Hol( 0host.
"& =or the( heard them s)eak with tongues- and
magni*( 0od.
otice that it does not sa' the' heard the men spea+in).
and the women +eepin) silence. %eter was sent to preach to the
entire household. and we can conclude since the Hol' 5host fell
on all them which heard the Word. that the women as well as the
men spo+e aloud in other ton)ues and ma)nified 5od.
When the Spirit of 5od came on Mar'. the mother of *esus.
and on EliIabeth. the mother of *ohn. and on !nna. the
prophetess>the' did not +eep silence. The' spo+e.
';KE 1#$>%"3
$> And 1ar( arose in those da(s- and went into the
hill%countr( with haste- into a cit( o* 9uda+
"D And entered into the house o* Hacharias- and
saluted Elisa,eth.
"1 And it came to )ass- that when Elisa,eth heard
the salutation o* 1ar(- the ,a,e lea)ed in her
wom,+ and Elisa,eth was *illed with the Hol(
"3 And she s)ake out with a loud 6oice....
When the Spirit of 5od came upon EliIabeth. she spo+e out
with a loud 1oice and be)an to prophes'. The -ord )a1e her a
messa)e. When the Spirit of 5od came upon Mar'. she spo+e
out the beautiful prophec' 'ou can read in -u+e 2C6=7::.
EYeah.E someone sa's. Ebut that was in the home. "t's all
,ust &omen Kee# Silen(e in the <hur(hes3 :4
ri)ht in the home.E
When the Spirit of 5od mo1es as people worship Him. in
'our home. 'our li1in) room. or the church buildin). 'ou're
ha1in) church. !nd when the Spirit of 5od mo1es. as far as 5od
is concerned. there is reall' neither male nor female. "f the Spirit
of 5od comes on a woman. "'m not )oin) to tell her to be 0uiet.
are 'ou9 "f she's preachin) a sermon. "'m not )oin) to tell her to
hush. are 'ou9 To do so. is to do despite unto the )race of 5od.
';KE 3#$&%$@
$& And there was one Anna- a )ro)hetess- the
daughter o* 7hanuel- o* the tri,e o* Aser# she was
o* a great age- and had li6ed with a hus,and se6en
(ears *rom her 6irginit(+
$? And she was a widow o* a,out *our%score and
*our (ears- which de)arted not *rom the tem)le-
,ut ser6ed 0od with *astings and )ra(ers night and
$@ And she coming in that instant ga6e thanks
likewise unto the 'ord- and s)ake o* him to all
them that looked *or redem)tion in 9erusalem.
The Bible calls !nna a prophetess>which is simpl' the
feminine form of prophet. !nna was spea+in) ri)ht out in what
we would call the house of 5od.
%aul certainl' would not pre1ent women from spea+in)
messa)es )i1en to them b' the Spirit. (or the -ord said. EYour
dau)hters shall prophes'.E %aul could not countermand the
-ord's order b' sa'in). EThe dau)hters shall not prophes'.E
could he9 !nd neither can an' other man.
"'m con1inced %aul was sa'in). E" suffer not a wife to teach
or usurp authorit' o1er her husband.E Yet. if the husband were
not a &hristian. he wouldn't +now an'thin) to teach his wife.
and she mi)ht ha1e to teach him. She mi)ht e1en ha1e to ta+e
authorit' which is not reall' hers>because children need to be
:5 The &oman 'uestion
tau)ht in the home. "f the husband is not )oin) to ta+e his place
and read the Bible and pra' with the children. the wife should.
!nd she is not disobe'in) 5od b' doin) so.
But e1en lea1in) it as the 8in) *ames translates it. E" suffer
not a woman to teach.E it mi)ht not ha1e been ad1isable in that
da' and in that part of the $oman Empire for women to teach. "n
our times thou)h. e1en those who ta+e a stron) stand for
+eepin) women 0uiet in the church ser1ices ha1e 'ielded
enou)h to let them teach in Sunda' schools. and in public
E%aul means thou)h.E somebod' sa's. Ethat women should
not teach men.E
%riscilla and !0uilla were %aul's companions in whom he
had )reat deli)ht. !nd %riscilla. a woman. tau)ht !pollos.
ACT! 1@#3&
3& And he IA)ollosJ ,egan to s)eak ,oldl( in the
s(nagogue# whom- when A8uila and 7riscilla had
heard- the( took him unto them- and eA)ounded
unto him the wa( o* 0od more )er*ectl(.
EWell. it's all ri)ht to teach one man.E some mi)ht ar)ue.
"f it's all ri)ht to teach one man. it's all ri)ht to teach a
doIen. That would be li+e ar)uin) it's all ri)ht to steal one
dollar. but wron) to steal fi1e.
EThe' can teach all ri)ht. an'where else but in church.E
Who said so9 The' were ha1in) church. The three were
)athered in His name. *esus didn't specif' where the' had to be
7!A'1 &@#11
11 The 'ord ga6e the word# great was the com)an(
o* those that )u,lished it.
This is a prophetic %salm. "t is tal+in) about the 5ood
,ust &omen Kee# Silen(e in the <hur(hes3 :7
ews>the )ospel>and the da' in which we are li1in). "t has
troubled some of the opposers of the ministr' of women to +now
that the Hebrew word translated (om#any is feminine>and not
Bust a word of feminine )ender. but a word which means
women. Here is the wa' the "saac -eeser translation from the
ori)inal Hebrew readsC
7!A'1 &@#11 :'EE!ER<
11 The 'ord ga6e ha))( tidings# the( are
)u,lished ,( the *emale messengers- a numerous
!fter all. the first one to )o tell>and to #rea(h means to
go tell>the )ood tidin)s of the $esurrection of *esus was a
woman. *esus told her. E5o tell... . E The''1e been tellin) it
e1er since>and the' should +eep on tellin) it.
EWould 'ou sanction the full ordination of women to the
)ospel ministr'9E some fol+s would li+e to as+. E&an the' fill
the offices of apostle. prophet. e1an)elist. pastor. and teacher9E
We read about !nna. whom the Bible calls a prophetess. "t
doesn't Bust sa' that she prophesied>it calls her a prophetess.
There is a difference.
" personall'>and this is m' opinion now>do not see an'
harm in a woman fillin) an' of the offices in the church.
Howe1er. " do belie1e it would be a little more difficult for a
woman to stand in the office of pastor. Yet " realiIe 5od would
use them here.
! friend of ours. now o1er ei)ht'. an ordained !ssembl' of
5od minister and e1an)elist for 'ears. told m' wife and me of
this e/perience.
She said. EWe owned 0uite a bit of 1acant land behind our
house. and in the summer " would put up some chairs and hold
>% The &oman 'uestion
an open air meetin). Man' people on our side of the cit' came
and were sa1ed. !nd because " had more or less led them to
5od. we Bust +ept on )oin) and built a church buildin). !s soon
as it was runnin) real )ood. almost 4DD in Sunda' school. we
turned it o1er to the !ssemblies of 5od. " reall' don't belie1e in
women pastors m'self. but because " had e1an)eliIed. and the'
were sa1ed under m' ministr'. it was easier for me to )et the
church built.
E! little while later durin) World War "". the #istrict
Superintendent of the !ssemblies came to me with a re0uest.
You remember how it was durin) the war. when people would
mo1e awa' from smaller cities to lar)er ones to wor+ in defense
plants. He said to me. 'We'1e )ot a new church buildin) o1er
here. and nearl' all the con)re)ation has mo1ed awa'. There's
Bust a handful left. and the' can't support a pastor and ma+e the
pa'ments. too. "t loo+s as thou)h the district is )oin) to ha1e to
ma+e the pa'ments or lose the propert'. Would 'ou ta+e that
church9' E
This couple was in the insurance business and had an
income of their own. She wouldn't ha1e to depend on the church
for support. so she told him. E*ust in this emer)enc' "'ll ta+e it
for a while. " don't belie1e in women pastors. but "'ll submit
m'self to 'ou brethren of the district. and to m' husband. and
"'ll )o there.E
"t wasn't far from her home. !ll she had to do primaril'
was preach to the small )roup that was left. But 5od be)an to
bless. and it be)an to )row. There were onl' a doIen people
when she went there. but soon the buildin) was full. !nd the
district didn't ha1e to ma+e an' of the pa'ments.
She said. EMan' people were sa1ed there. but " wouldn't
baptiIe them. ! nei)hborin) pastor would come and baptiIe
them. " didn't preach an' funerals either.E
You see. she stood up there and preached and tau)ht under
the anointin) of the Spirit of 5od>and 5od used her. But she
,ust &omen Kee# Silen(e in the <hur(hes3 >$
didn't usurp authorit'. or dictate to an'bod'.
!nother lad' minister. now retired. was an e1an)elist
mi)htil' used of 5od. Her husband was not a minister>he was
a contractor. She was preachin) before he married her. He built
houses and became 0uite wealth'. She built churches. She
would )o into small towns where there was no (ull 5ospel
church. set up a tent. or ha1e an open air meetin). She could win
the lost. The touch of 5od was upon her. Hundreds of people
were sa1ed throu)h her ministr'. and " can thin+ of about se1en
churches which are still )oin) toda' that came into bein)
throu)h her ministr'.
EThat's all wron).E someone mi)ht protest. "f it was wron).
"'m sure 5od will for)i1e her for )ettin) hundreds of people
sa1ed and se1en churches )oin). But noG "t wasn't wron). She
had the call of 5od on her and the abilit' to do it where others
didn't. She went in and people were sa1ed. then a church was
established. Her husband would o1ersee it and build a church
buildin). She would sta' until it )ot )oin). sometimes a 'ear.
sometimes two. ?The !postle %aul sometimes sta'ed with a
)roup as lon) as three 'ears.A Then she'd turn it o1er to a man as
pastor and )o on elsewhere.
She said. E!ll " did reall' was preach. We had a board of
men and m' husband met with them. He e1en too+ all the
preliminaries in the meetin)s.E
She wasn't usurpin) authorit' o1er an'bod'.
%. &. elson ?see +(knowledgementsA, whose notes on this
subBect ha1e been in1aluable to me. saidC
" belie1e it is usuall' best to ha1e )odl' )ifted
men at the head of our churches and institutions. But if
such cannot be found in sufficient number. let us call
the sisters into action. Thin+ how man' splendid
wor+s ha1e been built up b' the sacrifice of the
consecrated efforts of )odl' women without much
>. The &oman 'uestion
help or encoura)ement either from men.
Shall hea1' hands be laid on such women as 5od
has e1identl' called and endowed with natural )ifts
and 5ifts of the Spirit9 "f 5od hath called them>who
are we to recall them9 -et 5od send them forth>
because He's the one who did it. !nd when He )ets
read' to call them in. let Him call them in. " thin+
some men thin+ that the' are 5od>but the' are not.
and the' need to find that out.
Then #ad elson )a1e this ad1ice. which " thin+ is
To our sisters who are preachin). teachin). and
e1en ser1in) as pastors. e1an)elists. and missionaries.
we would 1enture this counsel. When possible. )et a
brother to do the baptiIin). and be content with
whate1er place the -ord opens for 'ou. Ser1e Him
humbl'. and sweetl'. and faithfull' there. until He
calls 'ou off the field.
: 1ust Women Ha6e Their Heads
Co6ered in Church/
1 CORITHIA! 11#$%1&
$ 5ut I would ha6e (ou know- that the head o*
e6er( man is Christ+ and the head o* the woman is
the man+ and the head o* Christ is 0od.
" E6er( man )ra(ing or )ro)hes(ing- ha6ing his
head co6ered- dishonoureth his head.
. 5ut e6er( woman that )ra(eth or )ro)hesieth
with her head unco6ered- dishonoureth her head#
*or that is e6en all one as i* she were sha6en.
& =or i* the woman ,e not co6ered- let her also ,e
shorn# ,ut i* it ,e a shame *or a woman to ,e shorn
or sha6en- let her ,e co6ered.
? =or a man indeed ought not to co6er his head-
*orasmuch as he is the image and glor( o* 0od# ,ut
the woman is the glor( o* the man.
@ =or the man is not o* the woman- ,ut the woman
o* the man.
> either was the man created *or the woman- ,ut
the woman *or the man.
1D =or this cause ought the woman to ha6e )ower
on her head- ,ecause o* the angels.
11 e6ertheless- neither is the man without the
woman- neither the woman without the man- in the
13 =or as the woman is o* the man- e6en so is the
man also ,( the woman+ ,ut all things o* 0od.
1$ 9udge in (oursel6es# Is it comel( that a woman
)ra( unto 0od unco6ered/
>: The &oman 'uestion
1" Eoth not e6en nature itsel* teach (ou- that i* a
man ha6e long hair- it is a shame unto him/
1. 5ut i* a woman ha6e long hair- it is a glor( to
her# *or her hair is gi6en her *or a co6ering.
1& 5ut i* an( man seem to ,e contentious- we ha6e
no such custom- neither the churches o* 0od.
! hast' readin) of this )reat te/t would lead one to belie1e
that %aul laid upon all women. e1er'where. and for all time. the
command to wear the 1eil. or to +eep their heads co1ered in
church ser1ices. Man' conscientious women toda' fear to
remo1e their hats in church lest the' 1iolate this passa)e. The
cru/ of the matter hin)es on this 0uestionC "s it bindin)
e1er'where. and for all times9 -et's e/amine this Scripture
carefull' then. for if it binds us now. we should obe' it.
Upon what does %aul base his ar)ument for women
co1erin) their heads in a reli)ious ser1ice9 (irst. he does not sa'
it is irre-erent* or does he sa' it is dis#leasing to /od* "f he
had. there would ha1e been no escape from this command.
Ee*erence to Head
"n chapter 4 we discussed what %aul said about husbands
bein) the head of their wi1es. This is the basis of %aul's
ar)ument. !)ain we'll read it from We'mouth for clarit'C
1 CORITHIA! 11#$%? :WE21O;TH< I would ha6e
(ou know- howe6er- that o* e6er( man Christ is the
head- that the head o* a woman is her hus,and-
and that the head o* Christ is 0od. A man who
wears a 6eil when )ra(ing or )ro)hes(ing
dishonours his head+ ,ut a woman who )ra(s or
)ro)hesies with her head unco6ered dishonours
her head- *or she is eAactl( the same as a woman
who is shorn. I* a woman will not wear a 6eil- let
her also cut o** her hair. 5ut since it is a dishonour
,ust &omen Ha-e Their Heads <o-ered in <hur(h3 >>
to a woman to ha6e her hair cut o** or to ,e sha6ed-
let her wear a 6eil. =or a man ought not to ha6e a
6eil on his head- since he is the image and glor( o*
0od+ while woman is the glor( o* man.
"n our countr'. we instincti1el' sense the impropriet' of
men co1erin) their heads in reli)ious ser1ices. "'1e been in
ser1ices where a man would come in and sit down with his hat
still on. and one of the ushers would )o to him and as+ him to
remo1e it.
!mon) the *ews. howe1er. the opposite custom pre1ails. "n
Orthodo/ *ewish s'na)o)ues e1en now. men are re0uired to
+eep their heads co1ered.
When we 1isited the Muslim Temple in *erusalem. we
pulled off our shoes and left them at the door. "n Muslim
countries. the worshipers remo1e. not their hats. but their shoes.
The -ord said to Moses. E . . . #ut off thy shoes from off thy
feet8 for the #la(e whereon thou standest is holy ground!
?E/odus ;C:A. othin) was said about his head)ear.
Wh' then does %aul protest a)ainst men pra'in) or
prophes'in) with heads co1ered9 This will come out clearl'
later. but suffice it to sa' here that the 1eil. or co1erin). was an
ac+nowled)ment someone 1isibl' present was his head.
%aul said a woman who pra'ed or prophesied with her head
unco1ered dishonored her head. He didn't sa' she dishonoured
5od. but her head. her husband who was present.
The 1eil was a s'mbol of subBection to her husband. So
thorou)hl' was it reco)niIed as a bad)e settin) forth the wife's
pri1ate and subordinate position that a si)nificant rite in
marria)e was the assumin) of the 1eil.
Marcus #odd said. EThe la'in) aside of the 1eil was
therefore an e/pression. on the part of &hristian women. that
their bein) assumed as members of &hrist's bod' raised them
out of the position of deference and subordination ....E ?(or
>2 The &oman 'uestion
further information. see +(knowledgment*A
This is the si)nificance of the bridal 1eil still worn at
weddin)s. !nd the custom of Eta+in) the 1eilE lin)ers in the
ceremon' of those becomin) a nun. a bride of hea1en. in a
marria)e to &hrist.
The 5ree+ word eBousia, translated #ower in 1erse 2D. is
also translated 1ariousl' as authority, liberty, and in the plural as
authorities and #otentates* -et's paraphrase that 1erse then.
which sounds so stran)e to our ears. li+e this. E(or this reason
?because of the facts stated in 1erses @ and 3A ou)ht the wife to
ha1e a si)n of her husband's authorit'. a co1erin) on her head.
because of the an)els.E Here a)ain. it is not a woman 0uestion.
but a husband7and7wife 0uestion. Out of deference ?honorA for
&hrist. the man should not co1er his head. Out of honor for her
husband. a wife should co1er her head>and also out of
deference for the an)els who were reco)niIed as present at
public worship. and who would be )rie1ed with an' disorder.
!.S. Worrell Csee +(knowledgmentsA sa's. EThe an)els are
ministerin) spirits. and as bein) present in their ministr'. the'
would be shoc+ed if a wife should )et out of her place and
attempt to assume lordship o1er her husband in church.E
"n Bible times. more re)ard was paid to the presence and
ministr' of an)els than is toda'. "t mi)ht ha1e a wholesome
effect on our assemblies and pra'er )roups if we were aware of
the presence of these hea1enl' messen)ers. The' are present.
The Word of 5od sa's so.
"n the &hurch &o1enant familiar to Baptists is found this
e/pression. EWe do now in the presence of 5od. an)els. and this
assembl' most solemnl' and Bo'full' enter into this co1enant.E
reco)niIin) that an)els are present.
Ee*erence to !ocial Custom
The ne/t reason %aul assi)ns for women appearin) in
,ust &omen Ha-e Their Heads <o-ered in <hur(h3 >4
church with heads co1ered is. out of deference for social custom.
otice what he sa's a little further on. ! * * * we ha-e no su(h
(ustom . . . E ?1erse 2=A.
! * * * but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or
sha-en, let her be (o-ered! ?1erse =A. %aul was sa'in) that to
appear in the public church ser1ice without her head co1ered
amounted to the same thin) as appearin) with her hair cut. or
her head sha1ed. That was contrar' to the pre1ailin) custom in
&orinth. Marcus #odd said on thisC
!mon) the 5ree+s it was a uni1ersal custom for
women to appear in public with their heads co1ered.
commonl' with the corner of their shawl drawn o1er
the head li+e a hood. ow. accordin)l'. %aul does not
insist on the face bein) co1ered. as in the eastern
countries. but onl' the head. This co1erin) of the head
could be dispensed with onl' in places where the'
were secluded from public 1iew. "t was therefore the
reco)niIed bad)e of seclusion. "t was the bad)e which
proclaimed she was a pri1ate. not a public person>
findin) her duties at home. not abroadH in the
household. not in the cit'. Both se/es loo+ed upon the
1eil as the truest and most treasured emblem of
woman's position.
ow in our da'. in our land. this is not the custom. !
woman does not appear to be more modest if she wears a 1eil or
hood on her head in public. True womanl' modest' is
reco)niIed now as much b' the fran+ unassumin) manner. the
open countenance. the sincere loo+ of the e'e. as it was in the
da's of %aul in &orinth b' the wearin) of the 1eil.
Firtuous married women wore on their heads such a bad)e
of subBection to their husbands. ! woman with head unco1ered
appearin) in the church in %aul's time in &orinth would ha1e
scandaliIed the church. Stran)ers would ha1e thou)ht such a
woman was an immoral woman of the cit'. Such conduct would
>5 The &oman 'uestion
reflect on her. and on her husband. "t would ha1e dishonored her
head. her husband.
We ha1e our social laws and customs. too. !t the turn of
the centur'. ri)ht here in !merica. it was a custom in most
churches for the men to sit on one side. and the women on the
other. "'1e been in the ministr' fort' 'ears. and a number of
'ears a)o " preached in churches where this custom still
pre1ailed. ! man didn't dare sit on the women's side. !nd a
woman didn't dare sit on the men's side. "t was their custom.
!nd 'ou'd better abide b' it. or the' would thin+ 'ou were out
of line.
!t a much earlier date. the histor' of the (irst Baptist
&hurch in Boston tells of an incident where the deacons went
outside to confer as to what should be done with a )room who
had come in with his bride and was sittin) with her on the
women's side. The' decided drastic action must be ta+en. So
the' came down the aisle behind him. )rabbed him b' the nec+.
and threw him out. He 1iolated their custom.
#onald 5ee was a )reat pastor and Bible teacher. He
ser1ed as a member of the E/ecuti1e %resb'ter' of the
!ssemblies of 5od in 5reat Britain and "reland. He tra1eled
e/tensi1el' in %entecostal wor+ throu)hout Europe. !frica.
!ustralia. the Orient. and orth !merica. "n writin) of his earl'
e/periences bac+ in the late 234Ds and earl' 23;Ds. he told of
arri1in) in a certain countr' where he was to conduct a teachin)
mission. The missionar' was not there to meet him. He had sent
in his place one of the nati1es who spo+e En)lish.
E*ust wait here. The missionar' will be here. He was
una1oidabl' detained.E the nati1e said.
5ee said that it was 0uite cool. and since the' were waitin)
out in the open. with no place to sit or ta+e co1er. he was cold.
,ust &omen Ha-e Their Heads <o-ered in <hur(h3 >7
E" )ot prett' cool.E 5ee said. Eso " wal+ed around and
stomped m' feet to )et the blood circulatin) and tr' to +eep
warm. " wal+ed up and down until " warmed up a little. !nd as "
wal+ed " be)an to whistle a reli)ious tune. Then " noticed the
nati1e was starin) at me out of the corner of his e'e.E
(inall' the nati1e said. E" wouldn't do that if " were 'ou.E
E#o what9E
EWhat's wron) with whistlin)9E
E"n this countr' it is considered 1ul)ar to whistle. "f an' of
the con)re)ation heard 'ou. no one would come to hear 'ou
5ee wrote. E" had to abide b' their custom while " was
there. " soon learned>and as " tra1eled o1er the world " would
loo+ with anticipation to the ne/t countr' to find out what "
could do. and what " couldn't do.E
"f 'ou're to be an effecti1e witness for the -ord *esus
&hrist. 'ou ha1e to prett' well abide b' people's customs. "'m
certain that if we had such a custom now of the wife wearin) a
1eil. it would be unwise to i)nore it. "f people )enerall'
considered it immodest. it would certainl' be wise for those
see+in) to ad1ance the cause of &hrist to conform to the custom.
! breach of the unwritten laws of societ' has rendered the
ministr' of man' a preacher fruitless.
!t the close of World War "". one of the leaders of the
!ssemblies of 5od in !merica went to 5erman' to meet with
the leaders of the %entecostal mo1ement there. The' had a small
ban0uet7t'pe meetin) to discuss plans for establishin) re1i1al
centers. The !merican said. E"t was their custom to drin+ a small
)lass of wine before meals. The' weren't winebibbers. it was
Bust their custom. But it wasn't our custom. and " was rather
bound b' m' conscience. 'What am " )oin) to do9' " pondered.
2% The &oman 'uestion
(inall'. the Spirit of 5od said to me. 'The Word sa's to eat and
drin+ whate1er is set before 'ou and don't as+ an' 0uestions.' So
" sipped alon) on the wine.E
!bout that time. he said. the leader of the 5erman
%entecostal )roup leaned o1er and whispered into his ear. EThe'
tell me that some of the saints in !merica drin+ coffee.E
He said. EOf course " drin+ coffee m'self. but " found
m'self turnin) to her and sa'in). 'Sister. "'m sorr' to sa'. but
the' do.'E
While he was there he couldn't drin+ an' coffeeH it would
1iolate their custom.
" li+e the wa' We'mouth's translation sa's itC EBut if
an'one is inclined to be contentious on the point. we ha1e no
such custom. nor ha1e the churches of 5odE ?1erse 2=A.
"n other words. %aul is sa'in) that the church of 5od is
abidin) b' the custom of the land.
An A))eal to aturalness
%aul ma+es one more appeal. to our sense of naturalness.
!Doth not e-en nature itself tea(h you, that if a man ha-e long
hair, it is a shame unto him3 But if a woman ha-e long hair, it is
a glory to her. . . E ?1erses 26. 2:A.
!)ain Marcus #odd's comments are enli)htenin)C
B' nature woman is endowed with a s'mbol of
modest' and retirement. The 1eil which si)nifies her
de1otement to home duties is merel' the artificial
continuation of her natural )ift of hair. The lon) hair
of the 5ree+ fop ... was accepted b' the people as an
indication of effeminate and lu/urious li1in) suitable
for women ... unsuitable for men.
otice a)ain that %aul didn't sa' 5od said it. He said.
,ust &omen Ha-e Their Heads <o-ered in <hur(h3 2$
E#oes not e1en nature.... E He )oes to nature to pro1e a point.
Small wars ha1e been fou)ht. and churches disrupted o1er the
0uestionC #oes the Bible teach that women should ha1e lon)
How lon) is lon)9 !nd how short is short9 " pastored
twel1e 'ears. !nd somehow " )ot b' in certain places. e1en
thou)h m' wife didn't ha1e lon) hair li+e the other ladies did.
The' would ta+e their lon) hair and twist it up ti)htl' on their
heads in a +not. But m' wife's head was more co1ered than
theirs. o matter how lon) their hair was. it didn't co1er their
heads. M' wife's head was co1ered.
%aul appealed to naturalness. When a woman's hair is
lon)er than men ordinaril' wear their hair. then 'ou can tell she
is a woman. We can tell from pictures of certain periods in
histor' that men wore their hair lon)er than we ordinaril' do
toda'. But. at the same time. women wore their's a little lon)er
than that. The men's hair was still short b' the standards of the
" would sa' thisC " don't thin+ it is )ood for an' &hristian
man or bo' to be the least effeminate. The Word of 5od spea+s
a)ainst it.
The wise man in Ecclesiastes said. !)et us hear the
(on(lusion of the whole matter; Fear /od, and kee# his
(ommandments; for this is the whole duty of man! ?Ecclesiastes
So let's sum up %aul's pointsC
2. He does not sa' it is irre1erent for women to appear with
heads unco1ered. He doesn't e1en insinuate it.
4. He does not sa' it displeases 5od.
;. He does sa' it is the custom. !nd it is wise to abide b'
the custom.
6. He appeals to naturalness.
2. The &oman 'uestion
%aul dealt with principles of uni1ersal application. But as
times and customs ha1e altered in re)ard to feminine proprieties.
" see nothin) in this passa)e to pre1ent women appearin) in
public with heads unco1ered here in our countr'. But if 'ou
were in another place. and that was the custom. " would
encoura)e 'ou to abide b' it.
= 7ro)er Eress and Adornment *or
Christian Women
1 TI1OTH2 3#>- 1D
> In like manner also- that women adorn
themsel6es in modest a))arel- with shame*acedness
and so,riet(+ not with ,roided hair- or gold- or
)earls- or costl( arra(+
1D 5ut :which ,ecometh women )ro*essing
godliness< with good works.
1 7ETER $#1%.
1 'ikewise- (e wi6es- ,e in su,4ection to (our own
hus,ands+ that- i* an( o,e( not the word- the( also
ma( without the word ,e won ,( the con6ersation
o* the wi6es+
3 While the( ,ehold (our chaste con6ersation
cou)led with *ear.
$ Whose adorning let it not ,e that outward
adorning o* )laiting the hair- and o* wearing o*
gold- or o* )utting on o* a))arel+
" 5ut let it ,e the hidden man o* the heart- in that
which is not corru)ti,le- e6en the ornament o* a
meek and 8uiet s)irit- which is in the sight o* 0od
o* great )rice.
. =or a*ter this manner in the old time the hol(
women also- who trusted in 0od- adorned
themsel6es- ,eing in su,4ection unto their own
Our -ord *esus &hrist has authorit' o1er us. !nd because
He is our -ord. He has authorit' to re)ulate our apparel. as well
as e1er'thin) else pertainin) to us.
2: The &oman 'uestion
These Scriptures deal with a temptation which>while men
are not immune to it>ma+es its stron)est appeal to women. (or
this reason women are sin)led out b' %aul and %eter for these
particular counsels.
"n our da' we ha1e seen that fashion has a )reater power
o1er man' women than does a sense of modest'. E1en worldl'
men ha1e been shoc+ed b' the scantiness of the co1erin) of the
persons of man' women professin) to be &hristians. "t is to be
deplored that man' women adopt fashions desi)ned for and b'
people of 0uestionable character. rather than b' those who see+
to li1e for the )lor' of 5od.
" do not see that either %aul or %eter is la'in) down strict
ironclad rules>but there is a principle in1ol1ed.
EBut %eter told women not to plait their hair or wear )old.E
some will ar)ue. ?!ccordin) to m' research it was the custom to
spend much time plaitin) the hair and wor+in) )old and trin+ets
into it.A EHe told them not to fi/ their hair.E the' conclude.
" a)ree with $e1erend O. B. Braune. now )one to be with
the -ord. but who was for o1er fort' 'ears pastor of the $osen
Hei)hts !ssembl' of 5od &hurch in (ort Worth. He said. E"
teach the women to dress up and loo+ nice for themsel1es and
for their husbands. " sa' to them. 'You had to loo+ nice to )et
him. and 'ou'd better loo+ nice if 'ou want to +eep him.'E
%eter wasn't sa'in) #O'T. Because if he said. E#O'T
plait 'our hair.E and if he said. E#O'T wear )old.E then he also
said. E#O'T put on clothes.E
(or he said. EWhose adornin) let it not be that outward
adornin) of plaitin) the hair. and of wearin) of )old. or of
puttin) on of apparel. . . E ?1erse ;A. !nd of course we +now
he didn't tell them not to wear apparel. or clothes.
Because of the temptation to women in this area. he is
sa'in). E#on't spend all 'our time on 'our hair. #on't spend all
'our time on fi/in) up. #on't spend all 'our time on dresses and
Pro#er Dress and +dornment for <hristian &omen 2>
clothes.E ?"f some &hristian women spent half as much time
pra'in). fastin). and see+in) 5od as the' do on their hair and
clothes>the''d be spiritual )iants.A %eter is tr'in) to stri+e a
balance here.
We need balance. The church has a tendenc' to )et into a
ditch on one side of the road or the other. We don't need to )o to
the e/treme either wa'>we need to )o down the middle of the
%eter's point isC #on't spend all 'our time on the outward
man* But see to it. first of all. that the inward man is adorned
with a mee+ and 0uiet spirit. "f 'ou will tend to the man on the
inside first. 'ou won't ha1e to worr' so much about the fellow
on the outside.
When " recei1ed the baptism in the Hol' 5host in 23;< and
came amon) %entecostal people. the (ull 5ospel churches were
a little more strict than the' are now. !lmost all the women.
because the' were tau)ht to do so. had lon) hair.
One lad' e1an)elist caused an uproar when she cut her
hair. or EbobbedE it as the' called it then. Some ma' not
understand this terminolo)'. but Te/ans and O+lahomans will
)et the picture when " sa' the people threw conniption fits.
The woman minister said. E5od told me to do it.E
EBut the Bible sa's ri)ht here.E the''d confront her. Efor a
woman to ha1e lon) hair.E
EYou see thou)h.E she said. Ethere are other Scriptures.
?Scripture must be interpreted in the li)ht of other Scripture.A "
saw that %eter said. '#on't spend all 'our time on 'our outward
man>on 'our hair>but see to it first of all that the inward man
is adorned with a 0uiet and mee+ spirit.' "t dawned on me that "
was spendin) too much time on m' lon) hair. tr'in) to +eep it
loo+in) nice. Since "'1e cut m' hair. " Bust run a comb throu)h it.
and "'m finished. " can spend m' time with m' Bible. and
pra'in). $eall' "'m more spiritual and ha1e a closer wal+ with
22 The &oman 'uestion
5od than before. " was spendin) too much time with the
outward man.E
There is a balance to be struc+ here. " would sa' this. that
those women who preach the )ospel should be especiall' careful
to a1oid e1en the appearance of e1il or immodest'. "t mi)ht be
wise for those who ta+e some place of leadership to lean a little
to the conser1ati1e side.
%aul counsels women. in lieu of )oin) to e/cess about these
thin)s. to ha1e )ood wor+s. You can readil' see that if a woman
spent too much time in some of these areas. she wouldn't ha1e
time for )ood wor+s. %eter counsels to the adornin) of the
inward man. "t ta+es time to adorn the inward man. "t comes
down to the battle within all of us between the flesh and the
" don't thin+ we need to la' down ironclad rules. and a list
of do's and don'ts. or do we ha1e the ri)ht to force our
opinions and ideas on others.
" was alwa's 1er' conser1ati1e. "t too+ m' wife the first ten
'ears of our marria)e to tal+ me into the notion of wearin) a
weddin) band. " Bust didn't care for rin)s. But " didn't ha1e an'
con1ictions about others wearin) them>it wasn't an' of m'
business. "'m not to re)ulate 'our conscience. 'ou are. That's
between 'ou and 5od. -et e1er' man wor+ out his own
sal1ation. When she finall' tal+ed me into wearin) a simple
)old band. at &hristmas she )a1e me one. " started wearin) it>
and )rew to li+e it. "t wasn't lon) before " said. E"'d li+e to ha1e
another one.E !nd she )ot me another one. Sometimes we're a
little preBudiced about somethin). and then we find out it wasn't
nearl' as bad as we thou)ht.
" ne1er did care for the earrin)s ladies wear. " wasn't mean
about it. " Bust e/pressed m' desire in as lo1in) a wa' as " could.
and m' wife didn't wear earrin)s for the first twent'7fi1e 'ears
of our married life. But " finall' told her to do what she wanted.
and wear them if she wanted. You see. that Bust amounted to m'
Pro#er Dress and +dornment for <hristian &omen 24
li+es and disli+es. " didn't see that 5od particularl' cared. !fter
all. " saw that 5od sa1ed people in !frica. and baptiIed them
with the Hol' 5host. while the' were wearin) rin)s in their
Sister Woodworth7Etter was an outstandin) minister durin)
the earl' da's of the %entecostal mo1ement in this centur'.
When she was se1ent' she had a tent which would seat 44.DDD.
and she preached to them without a public7address s'stem. " saw
a 2322 issue of the #allas Times-Herald, and ri)ht on the front
pa)e it said concernin) her meetin). ETa+e 'our umbrellas
down. bo's. and come out to the tent meetin) at (air %ar+. 5od
is healin) the sic+ li+e He did in the da's of *esus and the
!postles.E "t went on to tell how person after person was healed.
and how the doctors of the cit' were e/aminin) them before and
after. Some of the most amaIin) miracles 'ou'1e e1er heard of
occurred in her meetin)s. That woman was a powerhouse for
But she didn't e1en enter the ministr' until she was older.
5od had called her to preach as a 'oun) woman. but her church
said that women ou)ht to +eep silent>and she wouldn't obe'
5od. and )ot out of His will. She suffered man' thin)s. Si/ or
se1en of her children died. #id 5od +ill them9 o. But because
she was in disobedience. the de1il could. Her first husband died.
!nd finall'. when she was almost fift' and near death herself.
she said. E!ll ri)ht. 5od. "'ll do it. " don't care what the men sa'.
what the church sa's. or what an'one sa's. "'ll )o preach. and
pra' for the sic+.E Then thin)s be)an to )o well for her.
Because she was one of the leadin) %entecostal ministers of
the da'. thou)h not associated with an' particular )roup. she
was in1ited to spea+ at the biannual 5eneral &ouncil meetin) of
the !ssemblies of 5od in the Stone &hurch in &hica)o. " read
her sermon. and " thou)ht as " read it. E232=>but how well it
would fit toda'GE She spo+e to these leadin) (ull 5ospel
preachers about ridin) Ehobb'horses.E
25 The &oman 'uestion
ESo man' preachers.E she said. E)et off onto one thin) and
ride it li+e a hobb'horse. Some )et off on women's dress. That's
all the' e1er preach about>and dressin) one wa' or the other
will not )et 'ou to hea1en. or send 'ou to hell. You need to
preach *esus. )et people sa1ed and filled with the Hol' 5host.
and let the -ord tell them what to do.
E#on't fi)ht other denominations. #on't fi)ht fellow7
&hristians.E she ad1ised. E*ust preach *esus. the &ross. the
Blood. and the $esurrection. "'1e learned 5od will meet people "
ne1er thou)ht He'd reach. because their hearts are hun)r'. "
don't preach a)ainst an'thin). " preach for somethin).E
Bob Buess was a Southern Baptist home missionar' to the
Spanish7spea+in) people in the southwestern part of the United
States when he recei1ed the Hol' Spirit. He published a boo+ in
23<6 called The Pendulum Swings* The purpose of his boo+. he
states. E ... is to cause people to slow down and loo+ at the other
side of different issues. "t is to let the pendulum swin) bac+ into
the perfect will of 5od rather than to be hun) up in do)mas and
" 0uote from chapter :. entitled EThe %endulum Swin)s
Bac+ into -ine on !ttitudes Toward Women's #ress.E and Bob's
comments on 2 %eter ;C;. 6C
You must understand that women are instructed
to put emphasis on the hidden man of the heart rather
than e/tremes in dress.
"S "T T$UE TH!T ! WOM! &!OT
WE!$ %!T SU"TS9
o. this is not true from a strict interpretation of
the Word. %ra' about it. -et the -ord )uide 'ou in
Here is actuall' what the scripture sa's about it.
Pro#er Dress and +dornment for <hristian &omen 27
#EUTE$OOMY 44C: KThe woman shall not
wear that which )ertaineth unto a man- neither shall a
man )ut on a womanBs garment# *or all that do so are
a,omination unto the 'ord th( 0od.K
The scripture spea+s of women sta'in) awa'
from men's dress. and. li+ewise. the men are to abstain
from wearin) women's clothin).
Some homose/uals li+e to put on women's
clothes. The' li+e to impersonate women. "t is m'
opinion that this was the problem rather than the
simple act of wearin) the clothes of the opposite se/.
One thin) is certain. the woman should be a
woman whether she has on slac+s or a dress.
Tradition sa's that women should not wear pants.
The Bible sa's nothin) to this effect.
"f 'ou are wor+in) with a )roup of people who
ha1e another 1iew on women and pants. then 'ou need
to conform to them lest 'ou be a stumblin) bloc+ to
"f 'ou feel that 'ou cannot conform. then 'ou
should pra' about mo1in) to another )roup who
shares 'our con1ictions.
B' the wa'. women's pant suits are not men's
clothin). !lso. in Bible da's. the men wore s+irts and
the women wore the pants. %erhaps the women need to
ha1e the pants and the men need to ta+e the s+irts. ?On
second thou)ht. "'d rather not.A....
4% The &oman 'uestion
"t is 1er' important that 'ou follow 'our peace.
Some ha1e a stron) bac+)round teachin) a)ainst
women wearin) pants. Wear what 'our societ'
permits 'ou to wear. but do not tr' to force 'our 1iews
in a dictator spirit on someone else. You can share
'our con1ictions. but do not demand... .
2 %eter ;C;. 6 KWhose adorning let it not ,e
that outward adorning o* )laiting the hair- and o*
wearing o* gold- or o* )utting on o* a))arel+ 5ut let
it ,e the hidden man o* the heart... e6en the
ornament o* a meek and 8uiet s)irit... . K
Here women are admonished to put the emphasis
on the hidden man of the heart. The' are to be tender
and feminine. The' are to ha1e a )entle and 0uiet
spirit....let there be an emphasis on the humble spirit
rather than on the dress.... Some of the so7called 'hol''
women. as far as dress is concerned. are some of the
meanest women in the world. The' seem to de1elop a
holier than thou spirit.
! missionar' couple li1ed in what is now +nown as the
land of "srael from 23DD to 23;:. When the' came bac+ the'
wrote on Bible -and customs. Man' strides ha1e been made in
that land since "srael came bac+. but when this man and his wife
were there. more of the ancient customs pre1ailed.
He pointed out. EWe'1e tried to interpret the Bible in the
li)ht of the Western mind. and it is an Eastern boo+. We ha1e
learned that some Scriptures which mean one thin) to us. amon)
these people the' are interpreted in e/actl' the opposite wa'.
One thin) "'1e found which appalls me is that in !merica. when
we'1e come home on furlou)h. we'1e seen pictures of &hrist.
and in them He's wearin) women's clothes. The artists ha1e him
in a robe. all ri)ht. but the difference is in the color. There are
certain colors men ne1er wear>the' belon) to women. Some of
Pro#er Dress and +dornment for <hristian &omen 4$
the people who protest most loudl' about women wearin)
certain attire. ha1e a picture in their own homes of *esus wearin)
a woman's clothes.E
"n commentin) on 2 Timoth' 4C3. which is one of our te/ts.
Bob Buess sa's. E!ctuall'. the scripture deals with e/tremes. "t
cautions about e/cesses. Ornaments. etc.. are denounced rather
than the t'pe of clothes. Some women who are hea1' on
ornaments treat women in pant suits as if the' were sna+es. To
sa' the least. such women should be consistent with the
"t is eas' to become inconsistent. "'1e been in places where
the' wouldn't allow pearls or ornaments to be worn on the
dresses. But the' would do up their lon) hair with ornamental
pins stic+in) out all o1er it. This amounts to sa'in). E"t's all ri)ht
to wear ornaments on 'our head. but not from 'our nec+ down.E
"'1e +nown preachers who wanted to tell all the women Bust
how to dress>it was their main subBect. Their poor wi1es were
hardl' permitted to loo+ decent.
The' had to wear their hair lon). and couldn't use a spec+
of ma+eup. But those same preachers dressed up and loo+ed
nice. When the' went out. their wi1es loo+ed li+e their mothers.
< In Conclusion
Missionaries tell us that in the Eastern countries>
especiall' before World War "">the poor. illiterate women
were not able to comprehend the meanin) of the messa)e. The'
would fre0uentl' interrupt the ser1ice with foolish and irre1erent
0uestions. The' would spea+ ri)ht out and as+ such thin)s as the
cost of the missionar''s dress. or the purpose of some article of
attire. "t ma' ha1e been that %aul directed some of his
restrictions a)ainst a similar state of affairs in &orinth. where
histor' tells us the women as a class were +ept i)norant.
When " first came into %entecostal circles. " read with )reat
interest the writin)s of &harles E. $obinson. He said. E" thin+
'ou could sa' and pro1e that there are absolutel' no scriptural
distinctions as to carr'in) on worship. or business either for that
matter. which are based on se/. With 5od. there is neither male
nor female. Bust fol+s.... The distinction 5od ma+es is not one
founded in se/. but one founded in marital status.E
When it comes to the church>when it comes to spiritual
thin)s>when it comes to the bod' of &hrist>there are no
distinctions between men and women. !s far as 5od is
concerned. there are none. That's where man' ha1e missed it.
The''1e made it a man7and7woman proposition>when it is not.
"t is a husband7and7wife proposition. The man is not the head of
the woman in the church. The husband is the head of the wife in
the home.
0A'ATIA! $#3&%3@
3& =or (e are all the children o* 0od ,( *aith in
Christ 9esus.
3? =or as man( o* (ou as ha6e ,een ,a)tiGed into
Christ- ha6e )ut on Christ.
3@ There is neither 9ew nor 0reek- there is neither
,ond nor *ree- there is neither male nor *emale# *or
4: The &oman 'uestion
(e are all one in Christ 9esus.