Another cause for concern
is the tendency for some brethren, especially the young, to conform
to the world's fashion in wearing their hair shoulder length.
Some might regard it as a trivial matter, but it is the subject
of specific comment by the apostle Paul. He points out that as
it is dishonouring for a woman to have her hair shorn, even so
it is degrading for a man to have his hair long. The long hair
of a sister, which is her glory, should be covered during worship.
This is a symbol of subjection to her husband, who is the head
of his wife even as Christ is head of the ecclesia. These principles,
upheld by Paul, are destroyed by brethren who wear their hair
as long as women.
"Doth not even
nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair,
it is a shame unto him? . . . But if any man seem to be
contentious, we have no such custom ("we recognise
no other practice" R.S.V.) neither the ecclesias of
God" (1 Cor. 11: 14, 16).
In the same epistle Paul
warned that the "effeminate" would not inherit the
kingdom of God (I Cor. 6:9).
How much better is it to see brethren standing aside from such worldly
trends. Brethren who wear their hair long draw unseemly attention
to themselves. By their example they give licence to others to go
a step further and conform to even worse aberrations of the wholesome
conduct of Christ. Rather, heed the following:
"Be not conformed
to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of
your mind" (Rom. 12:2).
"Set the believers
an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in
purity" (I Tim. 4:12 R.S.V.).
(For further comments,
refer to the Booklet "The Hair Length of Christadelphian
Brethren" by Brother Ron Abel).
Mention has already been made of the need for sisters to have their
heads covered during periods of worship as a sign of their subjection,
being "the glory of the man". The following words of the
inspired apostle to the Gentiles, however unpalatable to the generation
among whom we live, we will be observed carefully by every true sister
"But every woman
that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth
her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven.
For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn:
but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven,
let her be covered" (1 Cor. 11: 5, 6).