The Don Martin - Mark J. Ward Discussion on

I Corinthians 11:1-16

Ward's 19th

This is the next (in sequence) post(s) that Mark J. Ward writes under the Subject line: Re:I Corinthians 11:1-16...

Subject: Re: I Corinthians 11:1-16
Date: Wed, 12 Mar 2003 21:49:52 -0500
From: "Mark J. Ward" <>

Mark J. Ward to Don Martin and the list:

(Post one of three)

I hope this post finds all doing well. We continue our study with brother Don Martin on I Corinthians 11:1-16 and in comparing his unusual "spiritual gifts view" to the text. I would like to review some of brother Don's comments and then proceed to answer his Question #3 of me. I continue to enjoy the study. I pray that all folks will compare what brother Don and I BOTH teach in light of God's Holy Word.

Don continues to improperly limit "every man" and "every woman" of the text to prophets/prophetesses ONLY. Don's position fails to realize that men and women who pray, but do not prophesy, are instructed in this text, as well. The view I hold INCLUDES the prophets/prophetesses since Paul's/God's teaching is for "every woman" and "every man". The view I hold INCLUDES uninspired men and women who pray; but not so with Don's "special men/special women" theory. This is a crucial flaw in Don's assumptive view.

In a very early post (when the subject line was Women Teachers and I posted the post to which Don replied and asked for this study, which I gladly agreed to) I wrote (in part), "1. "Prophetesses" were not the only women under consideration in I Cor. 11 (EVERY woman...praying OR prophesying).... since women could PRAY without a spiritual gift and therefore not prophesy (please note the word "or" in the text of I Cor. 11:1-16)....~Praying women~ were not necessarily "prophetesses" or ladies with spiritual gifts...." (from Mars-List Digest 3797, January 14, 2003).

We ALL ~pray~ today and the instruction is applicable to all men and women who pray in the New Testament dispensation! Don fails to understand (and properly apply) the meaning of the little word "or" in this text. He utterly fails at interpreting the words, "praying" and "pray" in this context as we have pointed out. He asserts "inspired prayer ONLY" and WHILE LEADING ONLY at that! I hope that Don will engage in the chapter 14 questions (5 questions to be asked of each other) as we intend to point out wherein brother Don misses the mark on his special definition of "praying". Jesus prayed an "inspired prayer" in the sense that such was God-breathed, but I doubt that Don can find any other instances of "inspired prayer" in the Bible! Oh, there are inspired records of prayer…but I Cor. 14:15 speaks of one whose "own spirit prayeth" (see vs. 14 of chapter 14), rather than God's Spirit praying through them! Other passages speak of a person being gifted with "tongues", and such could be used in the utterance of a prayer, but we don't see that the "content of the prayer" (not talking about inspired prophecy now <g>) came from God. Don continues to assert and assume things and wants us to jump on the bus with him; but we cannot.

Don's position continues to fail to consider that the UNinspired men and women at Corinth to whom Paul wrote prayed! I know brother Don realizes that UNinspired men and women were INCLUDED in the ones to whom Paul wrote in chapter one and following…his position just won't allow such to be the case in many of the verses in chapter 11 (he unnecessarily EXCLUDES them in some of the verses)! Please note the passage and what I really believe Don's present position would be that follows (in the "sense" or "meaning" of the verses. Don, you correct me if I get any of the following wrong. Thanks).

NASB: 1 Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ.
Don's View???: Be imitators of Paul in the areas wherein he
follows Christ.

NASB: 2 Now I praise you because you remember me in
everything and hold firmly to the traditions, just as I
delivered them to you.
Don's View???: Paul had already given the brethren inspired
ordinances (herein called traditions, but inspired
instruction to be followed) and praises them for holding
firmly to them???

NASB: 3 But I want you to understand that Christ is the head
of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is
the head of Christ.
Don's View???: Christ is the head of "every man" (not just
prophets and/or husbands) and man is generally the head over
women (not just prophetesses ONLY) {But note Don's changing
of gears as we go to the next verse concerning "every

NASB: 4 Every man who has something on his head while
praying or prophesying disgraces his head.
Don's View???: Every inspired only prophet who has something
hanging down the head only, which covers his face like the
veil Moses wore, while leading inspired only praying or
inspired only prophesying in public settings, only while in
the presence of ladies with like spiritual gifts, disgraces
his head. {Don also goes on record in this discussion in
teaching that all other men COULD COVER at times of praying}

NASB: 5 But every woman who has her head uncovered while
praying or prophesying disgraces her head, for she is one
and the same as the woman whose head is shaved.
Don's View???: But every inspired only prophetess who does
NOT have her head and face covered with a specific headdress
like Moses used, who only while leading inspired only
praying or inspired only prophesying in public settings,
only while in the presence of men with like spiritual gifts,
disgraces her head, for she is one and the same as the woman
whose head is shaved. {Don also has gone on record to teach
that all other women COULD BE BAREHEADED when they prayed
and be right with God!}

NASB: 6 For if a woman does not cover her head, let her also
have her hair cut off; but if it is disgraceful for a woman
to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, let her cover
her head.
Don's View???: For if an inspired only prophetess does NOT
have her head and face covered with a specific headdress
like Moses used, let her also have her hair cut off; but if
it is disgraceful for a woman (or prophetess ONLY, Don???
<g>) to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, let her
cover her head and face with a specific headdress like Moses

NASB: 7 For a man ought not to have his head covered, since
he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory
of man.
Don's View???: For an inspired only prophet ought not to
have his head and face covered with a specific headdress
like Moses used, since the inspired only prophet is the
image and glory of God; but the inspired only prophetess is
the glory of the inspired only prophet. (NOTE: This info on
verse 7 is taken from Don's previous answer to my specific
question regarding this, as I gave him multiple choices and
he answered as noted above…but, he will now switch meanings
in the next few verses of "man" and "woman" as we proceed,
to all men and all women until verse 10)

NASB: 8 For man does not originate from woman, but woman
from man;
Don's View???: All men (not just prophets only) originate
from all women (not just prophetesses)….

NASB: 9 for indeed man was not created for the woman's sake,
but woman for the man's sake.
Don's View???: All men (not just prophets only) were not
created for the all women's (not just prophetesses only)
sake (but Don will switch meanings again in the next verse)…

NASB: 10 Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol of
authority on her head, because of the angels.
Don's View???: Therefore the inspired only prophetess, while
exercising dominion in public settings with men present who
had like gifts, ought to have a symbol of authority on her
head, showing her subjection??? to men at this time, because
of the angels. (But Don will switch meanings again back to
the general all men/women)

NASB: 11 However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent
of man, nor is man independent of woman.
Don's View???: All women are NOT independent of all men (not
just prophetesses/prophets only) NOR are all men independent
of all women (not just prophets/prophetesses only).

NASB: 12 For as the woman originates from the man, so also
the man has his birth through the woman; and all things
originate from God.
Don's View???: ALL women (not just prophetesses only)
originate from all men (not just prophets only)…{But watch
Don switch again to his prophetesses only theory in the next

NASB: 13 Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a woman to
pray to God with her head uncovered?
Don's View???: Judge in yourselves: is it proper for an
inspired only prophetess to lead an inspired only prayer in
the public assembly with men present who have like gifts,
with her head not having on a specific headdress like Moses
used to cover her head and face?

NASB: 14 Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man
has long hair, it is a dishonor to him,
Don's View???: ALL men, or just prophets only Don???

NASB: 15 but if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her?
For her hair is given to her for a covering.
Don's View???: ALL women, or just prophetesses only Don???

NASB: 16 But if one is inclined to be contentious, we have
no other practice, nor have the churches of God."
Don's View???: Not sure, but think that Don gets the true
sense of this…that neither Paul, nor his companions, nor the
churches of God would hold to what the contentious person
would contend for (i.e. women uncovered while praying or men
covered while praying), although Don has a very LIMITED view
of this as we have seen, with the cultural blend in his
spiritual gifts view).

I hope the reader can see that what Don affirms, noted above, is not what the text teaches. Don's view, in my estimation, is the one that does not properly deal with the context (leaves OUT the uninspired men and women who pray), the subjects ("every man" and "every woman" is what Paul said, not ~prophets and prophetesses ONLY~) and the setting in which Paul wrote to them (Jews and Greeks co-existing in a city with diverse customs) and giving instruction concerning covered and uncovered heads at times of praying or prophesying that GOD would have them know (and for ~us today~ to know and follow, since there are no reasons given in that text that fail us now, or have ceased to exist).

Don accuses me of:
However, Mark makes several serious mistakes in his treatment of the "praying or prophesying" women of I Corinthians 11. First, he fails to realize that Paul addresses specific women, prophetesses. Mark does not understand what the role of the prophetess was in Bible times. Mark has manifested a lack of discipline when it comes to word study and application. The latter I say in view of Mark's treatment of covering (katakalupto) in I Corinthians 11. Mark exhibits the ability to establish the occurrence of a given word in the Greek text, but Mark does not know how to apply this information.

Mark here:
I appreciate Don for his willingness to discuss what he believes and to put forth his understanding of the text. Also, I have admitted that IF I am wrong about the inclusive nature of the word "prophesying" and IF such IS inspired only speech, that we still "pray" today and "every man" is to be uncovered and "every woman" is to cover when "praying". Don actually has answered one of my questions and contended that men could pray covered and women uncovered with God's blessings! Don has admitted (and we consider him to be very honorable in this) that the Holy Spirit SEPARATED "praying" FROM "prophesying" in our text (Don just doesn't take enough care in making the application in defining praying, in this text). There is NOTHING that mandates "pray" or "praying" be "only inspired praying… and WHILE LEADING ONLY, at that…concerning prayer in this text!

Further, I have no problem with someone wearing a covering that covers the face (so long as it covers the head) and hangs down the head. What I have already shown is that such a particular covering is NOT MANDATED when women pray (then or now). Neither the definitions, nor the context demand such an interpretation IN I Cor. 11 or in OTHER PLACES where the word(s) is/are used. Don said a lot about "Mark" in his last three posts, but did little to deal with the argumentation. I am NOT saying Don didn't write something after quoting part of what I taught <g>, he is good at that. But, such did not negate my teaching. The careful student will see the difference. Also, I have no problem if a woman wants to cover her head all the time. Such is NOT MANDATED, however. The Bible says when "praying or prophesying". These were clearly covered <g> in the last post of mine.

Don wrote:
Mark began his posts with a listing of what he views as fifteen assumptions on my part. Many of Mark's assigned assumptions reflect lack of context familiarity. Consider his number one: "'Every woman' doesn't even include every woman at the church of God at Corinth?" Throughout the Bible, the only woman mentioned as having to be covered was the "praying or prophesying" woman of I Corinthians 11.  These women were the special prophetesses mentioned in the Bible and these particular women were doing the same thing as their male counter-parts and, I submit, in the same circumstances and general climate: concurrently. On these women and these women only, was the covering bound. Alas, my friend and worthy opponent Mark does not pay attention to the context. Paul is not addressing every woman in the church at Corinth, only these prophetesses (women who prophesied). Mark has had to reduce "prophesying" to "uninspired teaching" and even to a woman in an audience when a male is delivering uninspired teaching in making present day application.

Mark here:
Don has not and cannot prove his assertions above. Please keep in mind the 15 or so assumptions Don's view asks us to believe! Don leaps from "every man" and "the woman" in verse 3 of the inspired text, and in verse 4 and following begins to LIMIT (unnecessarily) "every man" and "every woman" to prophets and prophetesses ONLY. Don further assumes a cultural position that influences (in his theory) the brethren at Corinth (and elsewhere) in such a way that Don says, IF the custom meant in Ephesus what it did in Corinth, then the lady prophetesses, while leading over men in a mixed public assembly wherein some men had like gifts, would have to cover! Paul did not base one argument in I Corinthians 11 on the cultural norm of the day. Don deals in pure assumptions again! Don also uses words like "ridiculous" and "extreme" when commenting on MY position <g>. Maybe with more time and study, Don will see how ridiculous his assertions are and how extreme the "spiritual gifts view" is to take the textual assumptive leaps to contend that "every woman who prays uncovered DOES NOT DISHONOR her head, ONLY the inspired prophetess who LEADS prayer in the presence of prophets without wearing a veil that covers BOTH her head AND her face, that hangs down the head, dishonors her head!" when the text plainly teaches differently!

Don assumes that women exercised dominion over men with God's blessings in public church assemblies (and elsewhere???). But he has no passage to prove it; it is based primarily on his assertion that women prophetesses did this in the Old Testament and were a special exception to the subjection rules of God (again with no passages to prove it)! <g> And, we are to take that Old Testament (assumptive) example and apply it to folks living under the New Testament! Would a Sabbatarian have a field day with that???

(Please see post two of three)

In Christian Love,
Mark J. Ward
The Religious Instructor
The Golden Isles church of Christ

(From MARS-List Digest 3990, March 12, 2003)

Subject: Re: I Corinthians 11:1-16
Date: Wed, 12 Mar 2003 21:51:30 -0500
From: "Mark J. Ward" <>

Mark J. Ward to Don Martin and the list:

(post two of three)

Don wrote:
I rather took Paul's own use of "prophet" and "prophesy" in the vocabulary of I Corinthians and showed that the terms never meant uninspired teaching. Mark, as I recall, never touched this argument and fact. Mark is a very zealous student, but in the matter of word study and argument (linguistics), he lacks discipline and direction. Also, we must appreciate that Paul presents the covering in I Corinthians 11 very carefully, as a matter that was bound on these prophetesses. What I mean by this is in a setting of qualification and requirement, words seem to be mostly used with their basic meaning understood.

Mark here:
I pointed out (but Don missed it) that it was the ~SAME Holy Spirit and the SAME Apostle Paul~ who wrote the book of I Corinthians WHO WROTE the book of Titus (all New Testament uses Don <g>)…from whence I showed him, wherein PAUL (in the Greek and English <g>) wrote concerning a "prophet" (Paul's and the Holy Spirit's choice of using a form of the word propheteuo there, brother Don) who was UNinspired who was a TRUE prophet! I also pointed out that I believe we do no injustice to the text if we are INCLUSIVE in understanding that whether praying or prophesying (inspired OR uninspired activity) that men should be uncovered and women should be covered! Why is it any more important that ~inspired folks who lead~ these activities cover/uncover properly per their gender, given the instructional reasons in the text, than EVERY man/woman who engage in the activities (inspired or uninspired)? Don dodges this about as artfully as one can <g>. Don at least calls it a rare usage <g>; but an instance nonetheless! (At least Don is not as reckless as brother Cavender's writing that mistakenly asserts in his booklet that prophet/propheysing is ALWAYS used of inspired speech (pgs. 13-19 of his tract)! Sorry you missed that part of my reply, brother Don, but I do appreciate your bringing it up.

Again, for the sake of argument, what IF Don is right on this point of prophecy being inspired speech ONLY? Then, we still have women today who PRAY who are to be covered according to the instruction in our text (since prayer is not inspired speech/activity only)! The "prophecy" went away with spiritual gifts (for the sake of argument), yet we still PRAY today. There were UNinspired folks reading/hearing the letter Paul wrote to the Corinthians. Read verses 1-16 putting yourself in their time and place as an uninspired man or woman. What is God telling you to do? One does NOT read the 16 verses (in that vein) and come away saying that an uninspired man can COVER his head when he prays and that an uninspired WOMAN can pray BAREHEADED! Don!

Don continued:
Mark and concerned readers, please note that W. E. Vine refers to the verb kalupto and in reference to kalupto he says the following: "Cp. The corresponding noun kalumma, a veil, 2 Cor. 3: 13, 14, 15, 16. See veil." Concerning the "corresponding noun" kalumma, Vine states, "A covering, is used (a) of the veil which Moses put over his face when descending mount Sinai, thus preventing Israel from beholding the glory, 2 Cor. 3: 13."


...Mark, the veil (kalumma) of 2 Corinthians 3: 13 (see Ex. 34: 33-35) covered Moses' face so that the people could not see it. Notice that the covering of I Corinthians 11: 6, 7 (katakalupto) covered the head. Therefore, the required covering was that which covered the head, the face and the head, and hanged down.

Mark here:
Sometimes the smallest of words can make the largest of differences in meaning and application. We have already shown where our good brother Don errs in misunderstanding/misapplying the meaning of the little word "or" in the text. Now, notice the difference between the words "a" and "the" concerning whether or not there is a specific headdress: "The veil" or "a veil".

Brother Don, the Bible teaches that Moses covered his FACE with ~A veil~ (not "the" veil) in 2 Corinthians 3:13. Now, before Don goes off and charges me with more word gymnastics <g>, please realize that the hair is given for "A covering" not "THE covering" (I Corinthians 11:14,15). Please read the text in the English and the Greek in 2 Corinthians 3:13…you will see that Moses covered his face with ~A veil~ (absence of the definite article argument, Don). I deny that Don has proven any specific headdress that must cover the face and hang down the head! Don argues as IF there were only ONE SPECIFIC headdress called a veil in Moses' day (another assumption without proof) and that several hundreds of years later when Paul wrote to the church of God at Corinth, that there was still just ONE SPECIFIC headdress that could be called a veil! Who believes it?

Reckon Moses wore the same type of a "veil" that a woman would wear in his day? BTW, brother Don, was Moses showing a sign of subjection to women when he wore such a veil? <g> (Don has no point here, even if Moses DID wear a veil like a woman would wear in the Old Testament, since God tells us Moses covered his FACE! Such is DIFFERENT with regards to the New Testament instruction in I Cor. 11 on ~covering the head~, since God did not require the covering of the head by women at times of "praying or prophesying" in the Old Testament age!). Don takes a passage on headship in I Corinthians 11, that gives instruction about covering the HEAD of women and tries to mandate ALSO covering the FACE, when such is not demanded! Another bold assertion which is unnecessary from the texts (immediate and remote). God did NOT specify a particular headdress like Moses wore, including specifying one size, one shape, one color, one opacity or one type of material for the artificial covering a woman might choose (given generic authority in this matter) to meet the demands of "cover" (action required) in the text.

Further, what IF kata is simply intensifying the verb under consideration? What IF kata when put with kalupto has the idea of "come down upon" instead of "hanging down from"? A covering that covered the top and back of the head (even like a skull cap) would meet the requirements of taking artificial clothing and placing it on the "head" ~come down upon~ the top of the head to include the back of the head. A careful student of the use of the word will reveal this to be a possibility, yet Don MANDATES it to be a certain way: his way! Just as Don switches back and forth between knowing a lot and knowing very little about the customs of the day in which Paul wrote; Don also switches back and forth between knowing a lot about the particulars of the headdress in the text (his ~specific veil~ which he asserts must cover the face and head and hang down the head) and knowing very little about it (Don previously argued that a lack of particulars on the covering in the New Testament proves it is not necessary today)! Don doesn't usually ~disagree~ with my arguments on grammar, the meaning of the word "or", even in my finding a "rare" use of prophet in the NT, or the meaning of katakalupto in the LLX…Don just doesn't ~agree~ with my application of such in I Corinthians 11 <g>!

Please note the following quote in rebuttal to the argument Don advances, "The idea that the word katakalupto requires "to hang down from" is theoretically derived from the etymology of the word: kata meaning "down" hence "hang down from", and "kalupto" meaning "to cover"; thus to cover by hanging down from. Some scholars says this. Still others say differently, such as "come down upon". The next paragraph gives instances where the word is used and the meaning cannot be "hang down from". If we are going to insist on etymology, the word translated cover in 11:15 is from the Greek word periballo, which etymologically means to throw or cast (ballo) around (peri) hence "to wrap". This is just as specific as katakalupto. To be consistent, he would argue that a woman's covering must specifically be a veil that covers and hangs down from the head, that man ought also to argue that her hair just as specifically must cover her head by being thrown or cast (wrapped) around it? Who believes it? Strangely, even those who argue that the covering of vss. 5-6 must hang down from, will not say that her hair must be wrapped around her head. No! They will let her hair hand down !! If they are going to let that which should be wrapped around hang down from, why to they object when others want to let that which they say should hang down from be wrapped around? -20- While I Cor. 11 is the only New Testament passage where katakalupto is used, it occurs at least 22 times in the Greek Old Testament (Septuagint). In Num. 22:5 Balak sent for Balaam to curse the Israelites and said, "they cover the face of the earth". Did they "hang down from" it? And did they completely cover it so that none of it could be seen? No. In Ezek. 38:9 a cloud is said to cover the land. Did it hang down from it? In 38:16 the same expression "cover the land" is found, but here the word is kalupto without the kata prefix. If it be argued that the preposition kata requires the meaning "hang down from", how can it be explained that in these two verses the two words (kalupto and katakalupto) are used interchangable? A number of other passages could be given, both in the Septuagint and in classical authors, but these should suffice to show that katakalupto does not necessarily mean "cover so as to hang down from". However, I surely agree that the import of the word is "to cover", but even the English says that. Bobby pins do not cover, a one inch strip of ribbon does not cover, unless it is an unusual head! Yes, it should cover, but the passage does not specify with what. There are many articles that will do that: shawls, scarves, mantillas, veils, and even some hats. And the passage does not simply say "a sign". Rather it teaches a covering for a sign, but it is a covering, not just a sign. The passage says nothing about the face being covered. After all, her hair is given for a covering, but it does not cover her face, does it (vs. 15)? If as some claim, the covering here discussed is specific that it must be a veil and nothing but a veil, why do translations vary: KJ "covered"; ASV "veiled"; Berkley "veiled" and "headcovering"; Wuest: "shawl"? I have seen katakalupsis, the noun form of the word, described as a
mitra, and this latter word is variously translated turban or snood. Thus: her head-covering (katakalupsis) consisted of a mitra (turban or snood). It must not be quite as specific as some claim. It says cover. It does not specify with what. Neither should we." (from Hiram Hutto's tract COMMAND OR CUSTOM pgs. 20,21).

Mark continued:
For the sake of argument, if Don is right, women would simply have to wear that kind of a covering whenever "praying or prophesying". IF Don is right on his "specific headdress" then whenever men pray, so long as they don't have on that specific headdress, they are NOT COVERED! See the point? But in reality, Don has not proven from the SCRIPTURES a specific headdress. IF he could, such would simply require such a headdress to be utilized, but would NOT negate the instruction for women today to cover when they pray!

Don reflects:
Mark universally binds the covering on all women, changes "prophesying" to mean uninspired teaching and applies it to even a woman in an audience having an uninspired male teacher, and then he rejects what is said about the covering that Paul bound on the prophetesses at Corinth, then my friend Mark accuses me of rejecting the teaching of I Corinthians 11: 3-16.

Mark here:
God and Paul universally bound this instruction on "every man" and "every woman" living in the gospel age who pray OR who prophesy. Just like our "biking or hiking illustration", Don regulates and makes specific/special application to "only gifted hikers when LEADING who bike or hike" and leaves off the non-gifted hikers and non-gifted bikers" <G>. Maybe in time Don will see how such truly illustrates his improper reasoning from the beginning on this!

PLEASE NOTE: I answered Question One that women who follow an uninspired man "praying" would have to cover because they are "praying". I answered Question One with: whenever and wherever a woman engages in praying or prophesying she would need to cover her head. I may have been unclear that ALL PRAY when one leads prayer in the assembly, but we would NOT say that ALL PROPHESY when one prophesies in the assembly, for example. If the woman engages in uninspired teaching, brother Don, I believe that she must be covered. If the woman engages in prayer, she must be covered. Hope this helps. Thanks. (A minor point, but I am afraid I didn't make that clear, or you assumed something incorrectly about my position concerning "following uninspired prophesying". IF, however, "praying or prophesying" is an elliptical expression for ~the whole of worship activities~, then a woman would need to be covered at those times, as well. I have not advanced that as my present studied conviction on the subject, but such is a possibility. Thanks.)

Don wrote:
What I have said is that the covering Paul is binding on the prophetess in her special circumstances was that which covered the head and hanged down. Instead of accepting the usage of katakalupto by Paul, Mark jumps to the natural covering, the hair (peribolaion).

Mark here:
Don misunderstands my previous argumentation wherein I was refuting his (Don's) mandated strict definitions of katakalupto having to be a "specific veil" that covers the face. When he used definitions that included the word "veil" concerning the peribolaion, Don admits that he doesn't mean that the HAIR (a covering) has to cover the face! So, we are in AGREEMENT then, brother Don, that a "veil" can cover the head and NOT the face! Don, did I use the peribolaion argument to prove that katakalupto does not have to mean "to hang down from" OR did I use the peribolaion argument to prove that since "veil" is one of the definitions of THAT WORD concerning the hair (and hair does NOT have to cover the face to cover the head) and katakalupto has "to VEIL or cover" as definitions of THAT WORD, that the ARTIFICIAL COVERING can cover the head (and does NOT ~have to~ cover the face). Keep the arguments separate and on the right issue brother! (The ~hang down from~ was a different line of argumentation, tho they were in close proximity, in my previous argumentation).

(Con't in post three)

In Christian Love,
Mark J. Ward
The Religious Instructor
The Golden Isles church of Christ

(From MARS-List Digest 3990, March 12, 2003)


Subject: Re: I Corinthians 11:1-16
Date: Wed, 12 Mar 2003 21:53:27 -0500
From: "Mark J. Ward" <>

Mark J. Ward to Don Martin and the list:

(Post three of three)

Mark here:
Concerning Moses…Moses had to cover HIS FACE due to the
shining of the glory…IF God had instructed Moses to cover
HIS HEAD and in so doing Moses covered HIS FACE and we read
wherein God had actually required such (i.e. to cover the
head required covering the face), Don might have a point.
Don takes a passage about covering the head in I Corinthians
11, chides me for using the LLX when running a word study on
the use of a word that is only found in the text of I
Corinthians 11 in the entire New Testament, but uses Moses
covering HIS FACE with a kalumma…as tho' such proves that
there was only one veil in existence… and that all "veils"
had to cover the face! Such is not demanded from the context
nor the definitions or the wording in the text of I
Corinthians 11, brother Don. God said cover the head; such
can be done without covering the face. We have proven that,
but Don loves to talk about what Moses did…when Moses' HEAD
was shining??? NO, when Moses' FACE was shining and needing
covering (See Ex. 34:35) <g>. See the difference?

Further, as we noted in my last post, Don can SEE and AGREES
that the hair can cover the head without covering the face.
Why can't he see that God has NOT specified a headdress, but
that women artificially cover the "head" (which can happen
without covering the face)?

Don writes:
I have seen women who supposedly believed that all women
must be covered simply wear a small circular object about
three inches in total covering space on the crown of their
head and maintain that they were in compliance of
katakalupto. I have seen others wear an article
(transparent and full of holes) on the crown of their head
that completely covered the crown, but that was all. The
kalumma mentioned in the Bible that scholars believe was
implied by katakalupto covered the head, including the face
to where the face could not be seen (cp. 2 Cor. 3: 13, Ex.
34: 33ff.). It should be Mark who is insisting on
conformity to what is taught regarding the particularities
of the covering. I say this since Mark binds the covering
and I believe I Corinthians 11: 3-16 was special and
indigenous to the age of miracles (prophesy).

Mark here:
Don knows that I don't believe all hats would suffice
(that's what I wrote in my answer, brother Don <g>). Don
knows I don't believe skimpy articles suffice. A fair
reading of my previous posts will show this. No argument
there, brother Don! But you have NOT and cannot prove that
the artificial covering has to cover the face and hang down.
It may hang down the head (most do that I see, brother
Don)…but such is not specified in the text! Moses did cover
his FACE tho', brother Don. You got that much right! <g>

Don asked Question Three of me:
Is it necessary for "praying or prophesying" women today to
have their head covered in order to be saved and enjoy the
fellowship of faithful brethren, and are those who do not
bind the covering today false teachers?

Mark here:
The above question has three parts. Don knows how to ask
questions, doesn't he? No problem brother Don. We are in a
Bible study to ascertain truth and contend against what we
believe to be errors in the other brother's position. We
study with love for each other, our own souls, the souls of
the readers and for God and His Word! Part ONE is concerning
whether or not the covering is essential unto salvation.
Part TWO is whether or not such is to be made a test of
fellowship and Part THREE has to do with the question of the
use of the terminology "false teachers" toward those who
disagree on this subject with what we understand the truth
to be.

If I didn't know Don better, I would say that he is so weak
in his position that he is like the Baptist preacher in
debate that has to get on the emotionally charged subject of
the person who has a limb fall on them on the way to being
baptized and wants to know if the person will be lost
eternally in hell! But, Don has, in the main, engaged in an
honorable and thorough treatment of this topic. It should be
noted, however, that when Don asked me to engage in this
specific study, with the asking of 5 questions of each other
on this (to be followed by 5 questions each on I Cor. 14) he

"I would like to comment on your question and then have you
pose to me five well considered questions pertaining to the
women of I Corinthians 11 and 14. I personally believe the
women of these texts are different and varying circumstances
are involved, so if you can, why not keep the two texts
separate?" (from Mars-List Digest 3798, January 15, 2003)

Let the readership judge as to this matter: Whether I answer
this question properly (for it has three parts) or not,
would not negate the fact that women are to cover their
heads when they pray and every man is to be uncovered when
he prays!

As brother Robert Turner has been quoted (famously now <G>,
probably on another subject matter) to have said, "I won't
get into whittling on God's end of the stick." God is the
final judge of who is saved and who is lost eternally. Don,
do you believe that the inspired prophetess who failed to
cover her head (while leading the mixed assembly with men
present who had a like gift, according to your view) when
prophesying would be lost? How would YOU answer your own
question in regards to your interpretation of the text
towards folks living in Paul's day who taught and practiced
the very opposite of what Paul taught them? I am sincere in
seeking your wise answer to that.

To honor Don's question to the degree that I believe it has
merit I will say this: The covering instruction is a matter
of faith, not opinion, for it is a Bible subject that
contains instruction for all living in this dispensation (I
Corinthians 11:1-16). This instruction is part of the
commandments of the Lord (I Corinthians 4:17) that Paul
would teach everywhere in every church (I Corinthians
11:16). Paul would have brethren (men and women/anthropos)
be taught this and communicate this to others (per 2 Tim.
2:2). This topic is involving an "action" so it must be
that such is either: scriptural or unscriptural. If
scriptural: it must be either mandatory or optional. If
unscriptural, such is clearly forbidden. Teachers must be
careful with this topic, for this is an often misunderstood
passage and numerous beliefs exist among good brethren (Don
and I have put forth only 2 of the 5 basic positions on this
good topic). God determines, in accordance with "growth" for
example, on the part of each Christian in the day of
judgment, who will be saved and who will be lost in a way
much fairer than any man could ever begin to judge. I leave
that judgment up to God, brother Don.

I do not withdraw fellowship from those who do not teach
and/or practice the same as I on the head covering issue. I
uncover my head every time I pray or teach God's Word. I
would recommend every woman cover her head whenever and
wherever she prays in light of I Corinthians 11:1-16's
instruction. EVERY teacher needs to teach his/her belief
(after reaching a studied conviction) on ALL Bible subjects:
this is no exception! I appreciate Don for teaching his
belief. I don't deny him that! How can we ever seek
agreement if we keep ourselves from study, discussion and
proper debate on this issue? God is pleased when we discuss
with proper spirits! Again, brother Don, I would do well to
hear your answer to that part of your question in the
setting and circumstances wherein you believe the passage
applies (albeit past now <g>). What say ye brother? A
sincere question from a loving brother, here, Don.

Brethren can dwell together in love and continue to study
matters like the covering over which there is honest
disagreement in teaching and practice. ALL brethren,
regardless of their position, should respect one another's
conscience and conviction in living as Christians should. I
realize that teaching that something is necessary today, IF
it is not required by God, is absolutely wrong. I also
realize that failing to teach that something is necessary
today, IF it is required by God, is just as wrong. Thus, the
need for considerable study and testing of positions.

When someone teaches on a subject, one either teaches the
truth or error on that topic. Such is axiomatic. We need to
be concerned about what is God's truth on this and other
Bible subjects. Do I consider Don Martin, for example,
(since we disagree on this particular subject) to be a
"false teacher"? I want to answer this question as honestly
and yet as lovingly as I can. Please give attention to the
full answer herein <g>. I don't call brother Don a false
teacher! On this subject, however, I believe with all my
heart that Don teaches falsely,( in the main, but teaches
some of the truth on ~some of the verses~ in this text <g>).
On other subjects, I believe Don to be standing fully on
God's truth. I personally do NOT go around calling brethren
who differ with me on individual matters of conviction (like
the covering, immodesty, and use of certain euphemisms in
speech, for example) "false teachers". I know there is much
that has been said and written about the use of the term
"false teacher" and "Romans 14" on this and other subject
matter. Again, Don, do you call me a "false teacher" given
our discussion on this topic?

I would like to take the liberty to include an answer to a
very similar question given by a faithful brother who most,
if not all, on this list hold in high regard, our good
brother Sewell Hall. Brother Sewell is just a man, an
uninspired man, but has many more years of service in the
kingdom of God than I. God's Word contains the answers to
this topic, but I believe that Sewell's words are worthy of
everyone's consideration. In the December 1975 issue of
WORDS OF LIFE (a church bulletin where I used to attend as a
boy), Volume 13, Number 12 the following was found:

"Is the wearing of a covering a matter of Faith or opinion?
Could it be used as a test of fellowship? Do you know of any
Christians who say it is a matter of opinion, yet in
practice make it a test of fellowship?" - Kentucky

It is the personal conviction of this writer that I Cor.
11:2-16 requires a woman to wear an artificial head covering
when praying while forbidding a man to do so. Believing that
the Bible teaches it, we must conclude that it is a matter
of faith.

The fact that it is a question of faith, however, does not
necessitate a break of fellowship with those who disagree.
It is a personal matter. This is not to say that it is a
matter of indifference, but that each is to be judged on the
basis of his own action. If I pray as I believe the Lord
demands of me, what others are doing will not affect my

Unity of teaching and practice in matters of faith is, of
course, desirable. Yet this was an ideal which New Testament
churches did not always attain. Paul wrote to the
Thessalonians of his desire to see them that he might
"perfect that which is lacking in your faith" (I Thess.
3:10). The church in Thyatira included a woman called
Jezebel who taught error and seduced the Lord's servants.
But it also included some who had not accepted that doctrine
and were known for their faith. This condition was not
approved, but neither were the pure required to leave the
congregation in which these were found (Rev. 2:18-29).

I must assume that those who disagree with me on I Cor.
11:2-16 are imperfect in faith. They may assume that I am.
But remembering that Moses on one occasion "did not believe"
God and that Paul was patient with the imperfect faith of
brethren in his day, can we not be patient with one another
so long as we do not have to violate our conscience?

I do not recall knowing anyone who believed the covering to
be a matter of opinion (faith???mjw) who made it a test of
fellowship-at least in the ultimate sense of that
expression. I pray that this may never be done. If those who
consider it a matter of faith should not do so, surely those
who count it opinion should not. A factious spirit either
way, of course, is reprehensible and may require
disfellowship even where mere disagreement would not (Titus

Preachers are especially susceptible to dictatorial
tendencies. It is easy for us to feel that all who hear us
should accept the "truth" which we so convincingly present,
and that a failure to do so is proof of prejudice and
stubbornness. Those who obviously disagree with us can
become an irritant and bitterness can easily creep into our
relationship. Since prejudice and stubbornness require
correction, we may feel justified in a continuing campaign
to humble the opposition. Regardless of what we believe on
"the covering" we must repress any such spirit; it is not
from above (James 3:13-18).

- Sewell Hall

Dear reader, whatever brother Don and I teach will not
change what God teaches in His Word! I would not want to
face God in judgment doing the opposite of Paul's teaching,
for example, in I Corinthians 11:1-16 at times of praying.
Let us all be fully persuaded in our own minds (studied
convictions based on good study of God's Word) and practice
love, patience and longsuffering towards those who may
disagree with us. Different folks grow at different speeds
and study different subject matter at different times in
their spiritual lifetime. But, we will ALL face God in the
end on what we believe, teach and/or practice on this and
other subjects (Jas. 2:12). There is a Bible answer on this
topic! We do well when we exercise ourselves spiritually, by
taking up the task of engaging in an in-depth study of this
text. A fair reading of the passage, by those who are not as
knowledgeable as Don in the Bible and/or in the Greek
language can usually give a simple answer to the question,
"What do you believe the passage is teaching when you read
the first 16 verses of I Corinthians 11?" Don, can one get
the true meaning of I Corinthians 11 without knowing and
studying the Greek? I believe so.

Thanks for your consideration of these matters. I want to
maintain the most loving and approachable attitude on this
and other Bible subjects, yet be firm in my convictions and
conscience, as well. I grant every brother and sister the
same. I want to thank Don for his pressing points relative
to his spiritual gifts theory and in opposition to the
position which I hold. Truth has nothing to fear when
engaged in open discussion. Don is a pleasure to study with
in this format. I love him as my brother in Christ, don't go
around calling him a "false teacher", but believe him to be
wrong on this (and a few other) subject(s). May we continue
to study, digest and re-consider and re-evaluate our
positions in light of scriptural, sound argumentation based
on God's Word: not mere assumptions and assertions that are
not in the text and are not demanded from the text! Thanks
to all for reading and to Don again for his efforts in this

In Christian Love,
Mark J. Ward
The Religious Instructor
The Golden Isles church of Christ

(From MARS-List Digest 3991, March 12, 2003)



[Editor’s Note: This is one of the most in-depth, comprehensive studies between two brethren on the issue of whether "the spiritual gifts view" of I Corinthians 11:1-16 is true, or whether God requires women today to cover their heads with an artifical covering whenever they pray. We hope all readers will continue to study all Bible topics with open minds, willing to conform to God's Truth. Thanks for reading! - Mark J. Ward]

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