Should Christian Women Have Long Hair?

HomeChristianity and the BibleShould Christian Women Have Long Hair?

I do not cut my hair because I believe the bible says not to. This may seem silly, but I would like to style my hair by putting lots of layers but keeping it looking long. I am 54 and look 20 years older with long hair but feel like it is wrong to cut it in any way. I know one Pastor says never ever cut your hair and others just do not care one way or the other. What do you think? Thank you for your help and God Bless.



Thanks for writing! Clearly, your question isn’t exactly about hair, but about how to understand what the Bible teaches. I commend you for wanting to do the right thing, and hope that I can clarify the situation for you.

It’s important to ask the simplest questions first: does the Bible teach that women shouldn’t have short hair? Certainly not. If we look at Numbers 6, we’ll see the following:

“If a man or woman wants to make a special vow, a vow of dedication to the Lord as a Nazirite…no razor may be used on their head. They must be holy until the period of their dedication to the Lord is over; they must let their hair grow long…when the period of their dedication is over…they are to be brought to the entrance to the tent of meeting. Then at the entrance to the tent of meeting, the Nazirite must shave off the hair that symbolizes their dedication. They are to take the hair and put it in the fire that is under the sacrifice of the fellowship offering.” (vv. 2, 5, 13, 18)

As you can see, both men and women made this vow. They grew their hair as a symbol of their dedication to God, then shaved it all off. If women aren’t supposed to cut their hair, they could never take part in the Nazirite vows. Women took the Nazirite vow and shaved their heads, and that was good. In case anyone thinks that this is an ‘Old Testament vs New Testament’ thing, I refer you to Acts 21:17-26, where we see four men who took the vows.

If women shaving their heads to take part in an important vow to God was good, why would it be bad for you (or any other woman) to cut your hair?

Those who teach that it’s wrong for Christian women to cut their hair generally refer to several verses in 1 Corinthians 11 . “every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head – it is the same as having her head shaved.” (v.5)

If Paul’s words to the Christians in Corinth weren’t about the length of a woman’s hair, what was he talking about? Look at v5: a woman was expected to cover her head during prayer, or when she prophesied. Paul likens a woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered to one who has her head shaved. The Greek word used is KEIRO…the same word use to describe the shearing of sheep.

Paul’s instructions had nothing to do with cutting your hair, and everything to do with living in Corinth. Corinth was a city where many pagan gods were worshipped, including Dionysus. One of the names used in ancient Macedonia (Greece) for Dionysus was “Pseudanor”. It means “false man”, as in “effeminate man”. He was pictured in art from that time as a beardless, sensuous, naked or half-naked androgynous youth. Literature described him as womanly or “man-womanish”. Because of this, worshippers of Dionysus would often engage in cross-dressing, where men would grow their hair and wear women’s clothing…and women would cut their hair and dress in men’s clothing. These women were known, for hundreds of years prior to Paul’s letter, as “imitators of men”.

Dionysus is the Greco-Roman god of wine, ecstasy and theater.
Dionysus is the Greco-Roman god of wine, ecstasy and theater.

That is why women having short hair was a big deal in Corinth: everybody would assume that they worshipped Dionysus instead of worshipping Jesus Christ.

Paul didn’t teach that women should have long hair. He taught, as was the custom of the day, that women should cover their heads while praying or prophesying. Keeping their heads uncovered at those times would have been considered shameful…as shameful as having people assume you worshipped a pagan god.

I don’t know where you live, but it’s unlikely that cutting your hair will confuse your neighbors and convince them that you worship Dionysus, or make you look like a man. That’s what Paul was saying, clearly…so please feel free to cut and style your hair.

While you’re at it, you might take a moment to read another article: Should Christians Separate from the World?. From where I stand, those who teach that you shouldn’t cut your hair are guilty of misrepresenting God, making it harder for others to trust Him.

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41 responses to “Should Christian Women Have Long Hair?”

  1. Leah says:

    I can’t find anywhere in the bible where it says that the people of Corinth worshiped Dionysus…can’t you point me to the verse? Thank you btw for this! Very enlightening!

    • Tony says:


      That information isn’t found directly in the Bible. It comes from the studies of history and archaeology. Dionysus was also known as Bacchus. It’s well-known that Dionysus/Bacchus was worshipped across the Greco-Roman world, possibly originating in ancient Egypt. Rulers of ancient Corinth included a family known as the Bacchiadae. Some of the issues known to trouble the church at Corinth would have been particular to former worshippers of Dionysus, including drunkenness, ecstatic orgies, and glossolalia (related to speaking in tongues). Thanks for asking!

      • Servant1 says:

        Your teaching is false. People ask you questions, and instead of giving the Word of God in context as an answer, you go outside the word of God, i.e. Dionysus, and the culture of Corinth, etc.

        You must repent of this.

        Whenever you have a teaching or discussion about God’s word, you are advised to acknowledge the following (middle sentence should be bold typed):

        1 Cor 4:6 I have applied all this to myself and Apollos for your benefit, brethren, that you may learn by us not to go beyond what is written, that none of you may be puffed up in favor of one against another.

        We are commanded to not go beyond what is written (which you have done). The bible does not get explained, nor explained away, by culture. God’s word is Eternal.

        Heaven and earth will pass away, but MY word will never pass away.

        So to teach incorrectly about the apostle Paul’s instruction, needs to be repented of.

        Furthermore, Paul’s argument is a heavenly (not earthly) appeal to the brethren (who are supposed to be spiritual):

        1 Corinthians 11:10 That is why a woman ought to have a veil on her head, because of the angels.

        There’s more that I could write, but you have done God’s Holy Word, wrongly.

        • Tony says:


          First, thank you for taking the time to respond. I sincerely appreciate it.

          You’re not the first to tell me I’m wrong, and you won’t be the last. I don’t want to be wrong, of course… so I take each accusation seriously. I would hope that you would do the same, of course. We should all be like the Bereans, who listened to Paul and then double-checked what he taught by looking at the Scriptures.

          However: your argument is seriously flawed. Your argument is that using any information from outside of the Bible to explain things in the Bible is wrong. Well, that’s wrong. How do I know? Because I read the Scriptures, that’s why! There are a whole bunch of examples in the Bible where people refer to things outside of the Bible to explain spiritual concepts, or to teach about God, or to witness to unbelievers. For example, here’s a list of books mentioned in the Bible that aren’t in the Bible: Over and over, the writers of Scripture refer to things outside of Scripture to make their point, as in Titus where Paul refers to what the prophets of Crete would say. Paul did the same in Athens, where he made up a story about their statue to an unknown god, telling them that he knew the identity of that god, and that it was actually Jesus of Nazareth (who is God). There aren’t just a few examples, but hundreds and hundreds. Every parable, every metaphor, every simile used in Scripture uses something outside of Scripture to teach.

          Now, you might say that that’s cheating… I’m pointing to things IN Scripture to suggest that using things NOT in Scripture is okay. It kind of is, of course. The problem is that you do it too, and you don’t even realize it, and you think it’s perfectly fine, but you criticized me for doing what you do all the time. If it’s okay for you, it’s okay for anyone. What in the world am I talking about?

          The Bible, of course. You and I would not be able to read the Scriptures in our own language, except that people used non-biblical stuff to translate ancient manuscripts into modern languages. You and I would have far less understanding of what’s IN the Bible had we not looked outside of what was written, to history and archaeology and linguistics for help.

          Let me give you a very simple example. Are you familiar with this passage?

          Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

          That’s John 14:1-3. Most Christians, and many non-Christians, are familiar with that passage. Jesus is talking about us going to Heaven, of course. What some do not know, however, is WHY Jesus used those words. The Bible doesn’t tell us why Jesus used those words, so – using your logic – we can’t know why Jesus used those words. Fortunately for you and me and the whole world, we actually know why Jesus used those words… and we’re far richer for knowing it. Those are the words that a Jewish man would say to a woman when he wanted to propose marriage. It’s a marriage proposal. Jesus was proposing marriage to the disciples!

          That’s why Christians refer to the church as “the Bride of Christ.” We see this confirmed in all of the passages where Jesus describes Himself as the bridegroom. Without this extrabiblical information, we would only know that Jesus is the bridegroom… but without His wedding proposal, we wouldn’t know that we are the Bride! So, when I explain a passage of Scripture using information not found in Scripture, I’m only doing what the writers of Scripture have done. I’m doing what Jesus did, and what His disciples did.

          Now, you refer to not going beyond what is written. That’s good, and wise. That doesn’t mean that we should never refer to things outside of Scripture, of course. The one who wrote that we should not go beyond what is written is the one who also did what you’re complaining about. Either Paul was wrong, or you’ve simply misunderstood what he wrote. How can I be sure? Because: in that very passage, Paul refers to a saying that his readers were familiar with… and that saying didn’t come from the Scriptures! Paul didn’t mean that nobody should look outside of the Scriptures for information. That’s clear from the context. What he meant, based on reading the passages around 1 Corinthians 4:6, is to not add new things to the gospel. There’s a gigantic difference between explaining the context of a passage, like a wedding proposal or a temple prostitute, and adding new ideas to the gospel. You seem to have confused the two.

          You mention context. That’s good… because understanding Scripture is ALL ABOUT context. Your simple mistake is limiting the context to only the words that surround a specific verse. Context is richer than that. Context isn’t just ‘what words are there?’ but ‘what did the writer intend to convey?’. That always includes the words, of course… but it also includes references to other passages of Scripture, to political occurrences of the day, to places and people not described in Scripture, to the sayings and writings of pagans in their culture, and so on. Your suggestion that I’ve ‘explained away’ Scripture is simply nonsense, and your suggestion that it’s wrong to go outside of Scripture to explain what’s in Scripture is both simplistic and naive.

          I wouldn’t expect you to change your mind based on my one response, of course. In case you’re inclined to just respond with ‘nuh-uh’ and tell me again that I’m wrong, I have a challenge for you. Please explain what Paul meant when he wrote “because of the angels” using only what we find in the Bible. Good luck with that. Let me know what you find.

        • Alan Stone says:

          Dear Servant 1, I belonged to the supposed nameless group. They majored on long hair for women, Judged them by it!! Yet would turn on you if you quoted such scripture as Ephesians 4,v,11-12. Luke 22,v, 35+ ,! Corinthians 9,v,4-5. And if you went into the Historical reasons for much scriptures,you would face the nasties again,Culture,Law,Traditions,Religion,were scoffed at. Because of their celibate only Ministry it was full of grumpy old men and women,with no Pastoral traces at all. Alan

  2. Moriah says:

    I get what you are saying, but what should we do with the scripture that says, “she is given her hair for a covering” This scripture comes directly after the directive that women should not pray uncovered.
    I sincerely want to know, as I was raised in a church that strictly prohibited women cutting their hair. I am no longer affiliated. People that I now fellowship with say similar things about Corinth, but nobody has been able to answer this question.

    • Tony says:

      You ask a good question, Moriah. To find answers in Scripture, we must spend time reading the Scriptures. We should take note of what they actually say, and what they actually do not say. The verse you refer to is 1 Corinthians 11:15. You should read the whole passage to make sure you’re getting the big picture.

      Let’s look carefully at the verses around v15. Take note that v13 begins with “judge for yourselves.” I’m not aware of any passage of Scripture where anybody lays out the way things must be, as in some kind of command or binding instruction, and says “judge for yourselves.” Paul isn’t saying anything like “thus sayeth the Lord” here…he’s making a point. The point he’s making seems to be related to the customs of Corinth, as I wrote in the article. To further underscore the point, what do you believe Paul would add to this passage if he were talking about women taking Nazirite vows, which required them to shave their heads? Would he say that having short hair is, by itself, wrong? Or would he say that having short hair in Corinth may cause some misunderstandings? I believe it’s the latter.

      I’d like to take a moment to address the church you were raised in. I don’t know, but I’m guessing it was a Pentecostal church, with “Standards” (capital s, of course). I have some personal experience with such groups, and have attended similar groups for long periods. The idea behind such prohibitions is simple: when you do what the world does, or do things that look “worldly,” you compromise your own holiness. This is, of course, nonsense. These folks (whom I love) have twisted things and caused problems for no good reason. They teach that your personal holiness depends in part on your external separation from the world. That’s not what I read in the gospels about how Jesus lived. In fact, it’s the opposite. He turned water into wine, ate with criminals and traitors, and made enemies of those concerned with cleaning only the outside and not the inside. You can read a bit more in my article about Standards, if you’d like. I’d love to hear what you think.

      In the end, as I understand it, Christians should be prudent and wise and strategic in all we do…but we are not commanded to wear our hair a certain way (what about ladies with baldness issues?) or to focus on the external things like pants and suits and hats as a way of remaining holy. We have been set free, and we should live as children of our Heavenly Father, and as co-heirs with Christ. We have responsibilities, but we are not bound by societal rules like “women shouldn’t have short hair.”

      Does that make sense?

  3. Juno says:

    So glad that i stumbled across this website. I joined a Pentecostal church about 5 years ago. I have struggled with the not cutting my hair and giving up wearing pants. I have been depressed losing my old friends because of my religion but have not made any close friends at church. What do you think about Acts 2:38? This verse does state to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins. It does not state to repeat the titles father, son, and holy spirit. The only church i know of who baptizes this way is the Pentecostal church. Thank you for your help!

    • Tony says:


      I’m glad you’re here! Thanks for your comment.

      I wholeheartedly believe that Acts 2:38 is true. I also believe that understanding any part of the Bible requires reading it in context…that is, to not pull a small part out and read it by itself. Those first Christians were all Jews, and they understood what baptism is. You see, Christians didn’t invent baptism. The Jews baptized converts to Judaism. This wasn’t considered a spiritual event, where God does something mystical. This was simply a public ceremony where the new believer showed the community of faith that they had also come to faith, and wanted to be a part of that community. One did not convert to Judaism without being baptized, but baptism didn’t make someone Jewish. It was a public declaration of faith. In exactly the same way, converts to Christianity publicly declared their faith. One did not convert to Christianity without being baptized, but baptism didn’t make someone Christian.

      This has caused some confusion, but there shouldn’t be any confusion about it. Christians should be baptized, but baptism comes AFTER you’re saved.

      In a similar way, there’s some confusion about what words should be used when baptizing. This is NOT a biblical debate. There are no formulas in Christianity. When people suggest that certain words must be said, they liken baptism to a kind of magical incantation, where things have to be done in the right way or it doesn’t count. That’s nonsense. Baptism is a public expression of faith, not a magical spell cast on a person.

      I’ve attended Pentecostal churches. One of my best friends – my son’s godfather – was a minister in that tradition. I’ve studied these things for years, and am not shy about sharing my thoughts about Standards. They’re garbage. That’s not to say that the idea behind Standards is bad, but that applying the Standards is almost universally bad. You might benefit from another article I wrote, about Standards. Let me know what you think.

      For reasons outlined in that article – and a number of other reasons – I’m not a fan of Pentecostal churches. Don’t get me wrong: many in those churches are my brothers and sisters in Christ, and I love them. The problem is not the people, but what the people are being taught. You struggle over not cutting your hair and giving up pants for a very good reason: they have absolutely nothing to do with being a follower of Jesus. You know this is true, but you also want to please God, fit into your church community, and avoid making easy mistakes about how you live. Please consider what I wrote in that article and let me know what you think. I’m here to help.

      • anonymous says:

        I just left the Apostolic Pentecostal church a few weeks back. My husband and his entire family is in the apostolic church, My family is not. I decided to join in my teen years. I was told not to cut my hair and to wear only skirts. It was a shame to question and we were told that God changes us when people are told how to live. I also feel there is a lot of controversy with Acts chapter two. How do you interpret verse 4 in chapter two, and also 2:38? I have basically been labeled backslider and not saved and not following truth because I left and have cut my hair and ware pants even though I read my bible and believe in Gods holy word.

        • Tony says:

          Dear Anonymous:

          I very much appreciate hearing from you. I’m very sorry that this decision has created problems for you. I believe it’s the right decision, and it appears that their response to it is evidence that they do not share God’s perspective. This is why I wrote the article in the first place: in their desire to be holy, some folks end up looking and acting and quite unlike the One they claim to follow.

          Verse 4 seems pretty straightforward. God wanted the gospel known, so He made it known in a way that got everybody’s attention. The disciples spoke in other languages, and those in the crowd paid close attention. Verse 38 is, to me, pretty straightforward as well…but it’s an area of dispute. Here’s my understanding: when some in the crowd understood the gospel, they asked what they should do next. The answer was to repent, and to be baptized as followers of Jesus.

          Some claim that v38 explains that one cannot be saved without being baptized, but that contradicts many other passages of Scripture. Baptism was practiced as part of Judaism, and was done for a number of reasons…but the one that matters here is simply a public ceremony in which a convert to Judaism proclaimed to the community of faith that they had also come to believe, and wished to fellowship with them. Christian baptism is exactly the same, which explains v38: those who had come to believe were to be baptized as a public declaration that they also wanted to follow Jesus.

          Let me know if you have any further questions. I’m here to help!

          • Autonomous says:

            Some say you must speak in tounges to get into heaven, that it’s evidence…that tounges always followed filling of the Holy Ghost. Thoughts?

          • Tony says:


            That’s a common belief among some Charismatics and Pentecostals, but it’s not biblical. Sure, they’ll use some Bible verses to “prove” their beliefs, but it can’t stand up to scrutiny. First, they need someplace in the Bible that tells us that this is how it works. It’s not in there. Then, since that’s not available, they would need to find some verses that strongly suggest it. They’re not in there either. They’re making it up, and it’s just not true.

            My wife and I used to attend a Pentecostal church, and they taught that “the initial physical evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is speaking in tongues.” I believe that’s a direct quote. The pastor taught a class on the subject, and we took the handout home to study it. After looking up every single verse (the same ones your church uses, I’m sure) we went back to him with a respectful but direct question. We said that we looked up every verse, and tried to be open-minded…but that not one of those verses actually taught what the church said was true. We wanted to know if we’d missed something. His response was simple: we were right. This is really a conclusion that some have drawn that just can’t be backed up with Scripture.

            I would use the thief on the cross as an example. We have no evidence that he ever spoke in tongues, but Jesus promised they would be together in Paradise that very day. In past discussions (this isn’t a new debate) with CharisPentals (my special word) they’ve responded that the thief was an exception, and that God could make exceptions whenever He wanted, but that the rule still stood. Silly and ridiculous.

            Now: you must be baptized in the Holy Spirit. That’s true…John the Baptist taught that Jesus would do that for us, and that’s what happens when we place our faith in Him. There’s simply no evidence that every believer will ever speak in tongues, and definitely no evidence that only tongues-speakers will get into Heaven. It’s simply bologna.

            Your thoughts?

    • Bob says:

      I saw a bus full of Pentacostal women and men a couple years ago. ALL the women had short to medium length hair. As a straight guy, I was disappointed. Long hair is not the route to salvation, but it surely is aesthetically appreciated by the vast majority of men!

  4. Autonomous says:

    How I read it is in verse 4 of acts 2 they received the holy Ghost and spokein tounges….two actions….then in 38… says one will receive the gift of the holy ghost but does not state speak in tounges…..then later on dads that 3000 were added to the church that day but nothing was said that they spoke in tounges… I don’t read it that we have to speak in tounges for salvation……I was told tunes always follows so you don’t have the Holy Ghost until you speak in tounges….
    Any advice being around in laws that are pushy and disrespectful in my leaving and finding a new church?

    • Tony says:


      Yes, we agree. Speaking in tongues is not something that every believer will do. As we read in 1 Corinthians 12, the Holy Spirit gives gifts to each, according to His plan. Those who claim you can’t go to Heaven without speaking in tongues are simply wrong.

      Family relationships are sometimes the hardest. First, I would pray for them. Not only that they would not harass you, but also that they would see the truth and respond to it. Now that you’ve learned that what you were taught is wrong, you should want them to know it as well. At first, they may not listen…so I wouldn’t push it. Instead, I would tell them (a little at a time) how good your relationship with God is. Let them see that the fruit of your “error” isn’t walking away from God, but toward Him. Don’t be pushy and disrespectful, of course. Be kind and generous and humble, knowing that it may take some time for them to see that leaving the church hasn’t turned you into a raving, Satan-worshiping lunatic. =)

      • Autonomous says:

        Thank you so much! I appreciate your responses. With this being a new change…me leaving the apostolic church, it’s still fresh and with time I pray things will get better.

  5. Juno says:

    I love this website. Do you think then that Charismatics and Pentecostals are really speaking in tongues as a gift from Gods spirit? Some Pentecostal services there is alot of tongue speaking. Maybe some are putting it on somewhat. I have heard other denominations say tongue speaking is from the devil but I don’t believe that

    • Tony says:

      Thanks, Juno! I appreciate that.

      Yes, I do think that many CharisPentals are really speaking in tongues. No, I do not believe that all of them are. There are a couple of simple reasons for me to think that. First, some churches offer classes that supposedly teach believers to speak in tongues. This is ridiculous, of course…if the Holy Spirit does not give you the gift of tongues, no amount of human teaching will give it to you. Second, having attended this sort of church for some time, I can tell you without hesitation that I saw people faking it every single Sunday.

      One of the problems in the CharisPental movement is that they seek signs, and seek to experience the supernatural regularly. This doesn’t match what we see in Scripture, but they do it anyway. It’s not a big leap from wanting to see the supernatural to seeing it everywhere. It’s not a big leap from wanting legitimate signs to manufacturing fake ones. I do not believe that speaking in tongues is from the devil, of course. There’s nothing in Scripture to suggest that. What I do think is that speaking in tongues has a purpose, like every gift…and that each believer should humbly and gratefully accept whatever God gives, and seek to use it as He intends. Gifts are for building up the Body of Christ, to meet each other’s needs.

      Some teach that there are two kinds of tongues: supernaturally speaking another real language, and a secret language that we use when we pray to God. Because the purpose of the gifts is the building up of the Body, we know that nobody benefits from someone speaking this secret language, including God Himself. They usually respond with some nonsense about the Spirit groaning when we don’t have the right word to pray, but that’s bunk. Being able to speak in tongues means having the words, doesn’t it?

      There’s simply a lot of bologna involved in the CharisPental community. There are millions of sincere, honest folks there, but they’re generally not being taught biblical doctrines or led into biblical practices.

      • Emily Pacheco says:

        I’m sorry I don’t quite understand, are you saying for one to speak in tongues, one must also be able to interpret what one is speaking?

        • Emily Pacheco says:

          and do you mind explaining why an interpreter for tongues is needed if what you meant was that one who speaks in tongues should be able to interpret what one is saying. Thank you!

          • Tony says:


            You ask good questions! I wouldn’t say that one speaking in tongues MUST also interpret. I would say that you and I should both get our information on this from the New Testament. Have a look at 1 Corinthians 14 and you’ll see what I see. Here’s an important bit:

            Since you are eager for gifts of the Spirit, try to excel in those that build up the church. For this reason the one who speaks in a tongue should pray that they may interpret what they say.

            Now, take note: this passage does address speaking in unknown tongues… but those speaking can’t be understood without interpretation, since the language being spoken in tongues must not be one that the hearers understand. As I understand it, one of the practices in pagan worship in Corinth was glossolalia, or speaking in an unknown language. That’s why most of what we know about speaking in tongues come from 1 and 2 Corinthians… not because it was something all Christians did, but because it was something Corinthians did.

            Paul wrote that one should pray to be able to interpret their tongues. Why? Because the goal is to edify, or build up, the church. We see this in chapter 14, but also in 1 Corinthians 12:

            Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.

            Nobody benefits from someone babbling in a language that nobody understands. Because the goal is building up other believers (the common good), an interpretation is important. I would suggest that it’s essential.

            Thanks for asking! Did that answer your question?

      • DT says:

        So do you believe there is a private prayer language (speaking in tongues) between you and God?

        • Tony says:


          A good question! No. I don’t find evidence for it in the Bible.

          While some look in 1 Corinthians 14 and see a description of a private tongue, I don’t. I understand WHY some people think it’s there, of course… but the passage isn’t very clear. Some people read it one way, others read it another way. One of the basic rules of biblical interpretation is that we use clear verses to help us understand verses that are less clear. We use ALL of Scripture to understand ANY Scripture. The idea that the Holy Spirit would give the gift of a private prayer language contradicts what we see in chapter 12. All of the spiritual gifts are given for one reason: for the common good. A private prayer language would only benefit the pray-er, and nobody else. For that reason alone, I rule it out. If their interpretation of chapter 14, which is cloudy, contradicts the clear message of chapter 12, they have misunderstood.

          Does that make sense?

  6. Amy says:

    Wow this is an amazing website and I agree wholeheartedly with your interpretations. I too was raised in a strict church where it was considered a sin to cut your hair, wear makeup or pants. You also were not allowed tv, mixed bathing, dancing, all those things were considered worldly. I discovered after I left the church I was an unapproachable christian. I represented all the things people couldn’t have and actually placed myself above them. I didn’t see it that way at the time but it caused people to shy away from me and almost scrutinize my life to see me fall. I am now Methodist and while it’s hugely conservative compared to how I was raised I appreciate it so much more. God is found sometimes in the silence and not the jumping and singing and condemning of the world. I revere the rules of old almost as blasphemy the attempt to separate from the world rather than help it. God bless you and your message.

  7. GEORGINA says:


  8. Omolola says:

    Please throw more light on Christ redeeming us from the curse of law , Christ coming to fulfill the law , as well as Paul telling us that we are saved by grace and not by law in relation to restitution of sin.

  9. Joshua says:

    Seems very odd that you would make assumptions of what people would believe and walk all the way up to
    ‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭11:15‬ without saying it. By reading the actual text of the scripture instead of inserting your opinion you would see that women are to have long hair.

    “but if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For her hair is given to her for a covering.”
    ‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭11:15‬ ‭ESV‬‬

    • Tony says:


      Seems very odd that you would completely ignore what’s actually IN the article. The only way to understand ANY communication is to take its context into consideration. Some statements, by their context, are universal. For example, the statement that Abraham believed God isn’t really dependent on context. It’s true regardless of the time of day, Abraham’s location, and so on. Other statements, by their context, are not universal. An example would be Jesus wept. That’s not a general statement that applies all the time, everywhere. It’s situation-dependent.

      You seem to be saying that women should always have long hair, because Paul told the Corinthians that a woman’s hair is her glory, given as a covering. Yes, the text does say that. Yes, I believe the text is inspired by God. No, I don’t believe this is a universal statement. Why? Well… the context, of course.

      First, the immediate textual context. Just prior to this section, Paul was talking about the freedom that believers have. He says that the Corinthians should follow his example as he follows the example of Christ. Why doesn’t he say that they should follow Christ’s example directly? Why is Paul’s example the middleman? Simple: because Jesus’ example doesn’t directly apply to the situation Paul wrote about. Paul was taking what Jesus did and said, and applying it more broadly. That’s important to note. In verse 2, Paul praises them for holding to traditions. This is not to be confused with doctrine, or sticking with the gospel as it was handed down. Then, at the end of the section you cite, Paul says that the issue of a woman praying with her head uncovered is a practice – a synetheia – that’s common to all of the churches. What is a synetheia? It’s a custom. It’s a compound word that, combined, means ‘mutual habituation.’ It’s just the way they did things.

      At no point should this be equated with a command of God. It’s a custom, not a universal directive.

      Would you care to comment on what’s actually IN the article? If women should never cut their hair, what about Nazarite vows? Did a woman shed her glory when she shaved her head as a sign of devotion to God? Would you care to explain how the facts outlined in the article aren’t actually facts, but assumptions? I appreciate you taking the time to write, and I do appreciate you taking the time to argue with what you think is incorrect. I look forward to hearing from you again, to see where we can agree. It’s possible that one or both of us might change our minds. Have a great day!

  10. Faith says:

    So no one in the comments so far has expressed any of the benefits of modesty, and I’d hate for people to read the comments and be all like ” skirts and modesty is always so oppressive ” or something. Not that anyone here has said that, but I’d like to share the other side 🙂
    I’d like to share my positive experiences with these things, unconnected to any particular church.
    I’m just a Follower of Christ who noticed a few things about modesty.

    So of course, since modesty is an opinion and therefore a debate, of course there are ways it can be used negatively or to shame people.
    But it shouldn’t be that way.
    I grew up in normal shorts and tank tops and such. Never thought much of it, until I hit puberty and started getting hit on, because I have a big butt and women’s shorts draw a lot of attention to it.
    I looked like a normal girl, and normal girls in this culture have one night stands and stuff, and engage in all kinds of ” riotous living “, so people saw me assumed that we had those things in common.
    As an experiment, I started wearing only skirts and covering my head with a bandana, and the change in how people treated me was astounding!
    I never got hit on, and was treated so respectfully.
    People started apologizing for cussing in front of me ; they assumed I was ” Amish or something” and I was shown such courtesy.
    I’ll add, I was a cashier at big lots at the time, so I saw a lot of people everyday of all different types, and this treatment was across the board.
    A manager there who was known for sexually harassing the women associates never hit on me, not even once.

    My point?
    If done in a positive way, in the right, biblically based mindset, not centered on shame or body shaming or anything like that, than the benefits of wearing skirts and head coverings for women can be amazing!

    When I looked normal, people treated me like a normal girl, and assumed I did all the things that the world does, that I would ” run with them to the same excess of riot “.
    Therefore, when I did not do those things they’d ” think it strange ” and get very upset with me, because I looked normal but I didn’t ACT normal, and that caused a lot of problems.
    When I started dressing differently, I didn’t look normal, and so no one expected me to ACT normal, and so were not upset by our differences because they were not SURPRISED by them.

    Do we women HAVE to dress this way?
    Biblically, no.
    Also biblically, there’s no argument AGAINST dressing this way either.
    I now choose to dress this way every day 🙂
    It’s up to our choice and our interpretation.
    But I’ve had a wonderful experience with it! I experience such a peace of mind and heart when I walk around in public knowing that, even though I look put together and feminine, that my BODY probably isn’t being judged or compared by others ( men OR other women ) because not only can they not SEE a lot of my body because it’s covered, but because they’re probably distracted by the clothes themselves and are wondering if I’m ” Amish or something ” rather than lusting after my body.
    Since I look so obviously Christian and like I’m part of a strict/old sect, I’m also reminded that my actions and behaviors in public will immediately be judged in that light.
    Therefore, I’m often reminded to pause more and really think about my actions and reactions in public, ( and at home, but that’s off topic ) because we’re called to be ambassadors of Christ.
    Meaning, if I’m wearing normal shorts and t-shirt at work, and a mean customer starts yelling at me, and I get upset and we start arguing loudly, other customers will see it, and think it’s ” just two people arguing “. Because at a distance, at a glance, it’s not necessarily obvious if either of us are Christian or not.
    These days there are way more secular people than Christians, so it’s easy to assume…
    But if the same scenario happens while I’m in skirts and a head covering, people will see it and think ” wow, I can’t believe an Amish person is acting that way ” and they immediately start thinking about Christians and how they should act, at which point they could draw a hasty conclusion that ” yet again ” ” all ” Christians are hypocrites, or other negative conclusions, probably concerning Christianity at large.
    Likewise, if I’m seen in normal clothes performing some act of kindness to a stranger in public, people will think ” that’s a nice person “.
    Whereas if I’m dressed in skirts and a head covering in the same senario, people will notice that I’m Christian, and again the insident will point back to Christ, and could reflect on Christians as a whole.

    Disclaimer : of course we can still be ambassadors of Christ in normal clothes.
    I’m not saying that we can’t, or anything like that 🙂
    I’m saying only, that it’s often more obvious when we don’t look normal.

    Peace to all, I hope this helps someone, or is at least interesting 🙂

    • Tony says:


      Thanks a bunch for writing that. You echo a great point that’s made in the New Testament: all things are permissible, but not everything is beneficial. I do believe we should be modest. I do believe that immodesty will unnecessarily present temptations for others, and might communicate poorly how God intends for His children to live. There are all kinds of benefits to modesty, including having a bit more self-respect by considering how must influence each of us can have on others. I hope others take notice of your words, and consider them carefully.

  11. Rhianna says:

    Thank you for this article. It helps confirm some things for me

  12. Freeman says:

    Anything that blurs the line between male and female is condemned by God. They are separate and distinct creations, and that is why He says long hair is a glory to a woman. Short hair makes a woman look like a man, which is not in harmony with His will, and when a woman cuts her hair it’s often an act of rebellion against God, her family and/or society. And finally, once we walk away from the Scriptures… we walk in darkness. Selah.

    • Tony says:


      With respect, your comment sounds like something cultural, rather than biblical. As pointed out in the article, both men and women who took a Nazarite vow of dedication to God would shave their heads. If a woman who shaved her head was really being rebellious against God – your words – then the Nazarite vow is rebellion for women. That simply can’t be true, as it was God Himself who gave Moses the instructions for how the vow should work.

      You mention ‘walking away from the Scriptures.’ That would be a bad thing to do… but it’s not much worse than taking the Scriptures out of context and pretending that they say what they don’t actually say. Let me encourage you to study the Scriptures for yourself, Freeman. What you’ve written here SOUNDS biblical, but it’s the opposite. Yes, men and women are distinct from one another… but the idea that God would be upset that a woman has short hair simply doesn’t match what God has already said.

      After you check this out for yourself by reading the Scriptures, let me know what you think.

  13. Servant1 says:

    Good words, Freeman. I have not been here since my initial post, which was rejected by Tony.

    I notice again, how off from the scriptures he goes, and long-windedness that is not on point.

    Regarding the chapter in Numbers on the rules for the vow of a Nazarite, he must not be able to read. For a person who constantly says we quote things out of context, it is Tony that misses the context.

    The Nazarite vow, was all about NOT cutting one’s hair. He misquotes the chapter stating the opposite of what is written therein.

    At the end of their vow of separation, THEN they shall shave their head, which marked the end of this season of separation. Pay attention to all the words to learn what’s what.

    Tony consistently rejects what is written and commits sacrilege by making the eternal Word of God into something that the world attempts to do with God’s Word, by claiming God’s Word to be influenced by “culture” and “cultural norms” of a day and time. That’s what sinners do to support their ignoring of what is written.

    Christ said:

    Matt 5:18 For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished.
    Matt 5:19 Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

    Freeman, you could not have said it better. These precepts that Paul wrote for the church, are not laws of a culture, but words that reveal God’s mind.

    The final thing on wisdom to be written here (I’m sure I will not return) is the wisdom given by Christ:

    “For who has ears, let him hear”.

    There will always be people to argue against what Christ spoke and what is written. ALWAYS. And our word to them is “Whoever has ears, let him hear.” Perhaps later the contrary person will get the revelation. Not going to continue quarreling about it.

    • Tony says:


      Welcome back! It’s been a while. Unfortunately, you’ve once again missed the point. I didn’t say that Nazarite vows were about cutting one’s hair. Here’s what I did say: if God wanted all women to have long hair, He wouldn’t have given any women any instructions to ever shave their heads. That would be like telling the ancient Israelites, “Don’t eat pork… but sometimes you should have some bacon, to show your devotion to me.” It’s ridiculous. That is, it’s worthy of ridicule. Don’t take my word for it. Just read the text and apply it to your position.

      I don’t feel the need to defend myself, but credibility matters… so I’ll say this: at no point in my life have I ever suggested that anyone should ignore, change, or adjust what the Bible says to better reflect cultural trends or modern thinking. I’ve taught the opposite for decades, and your criticism isn’t based in anything specific I’ve written. It appears to be based solely in your desire to turn our disagreement into my condemnation. Trust me… I’ll be okay, as your criticisms would only be taken seriously if what you claimed matched reality. Instead, I do wish you’d stick around so we could actually talk about what the Bible actually says. We’d both be better off for it, but you don’t appear concerned about that.

      I wish you well.

  14. Servant1 says:


    I did a search on this page and you’re correct that you did not say anything about long hair being something to do with the culture of their day. Somebody else, or two, said something along those lines and the way this site “quotes” the other person’s statements, caused me to believe that you had said it, while it was actually somebody else.

    And I will go on record as saying that we are not under Law, but Grace, so I do not adhere to some things out of legality, such as this issue, but do believe there is something more to it than “meets the eye”, which I quoted in my first post, and you deflected by asking me to give an explanation of it instead, i.e. the verse about “..because of the angels”.

    I do not have revelation on this, but the argument is strong. Nobody can easily dismiss Paul’s argument.

    You seem to think that this only applies for women while praying. Perhaps. But that position introduces a problem or two. We are supposed to be in prayer constantly, but I might be stretching to win an argument. I don’t wish to be contentious.

    When Peter addresses proper conduct for wives in 1 Peter 3:1-7, as an older brother in Christ told me and I likewise tell others, “Put more emphasis on the inner quality of the heart” rather than the externals.

    All in all, and especially men, saints should be seeking to know an do God’s will every moment of the day. People claiming to be of Christ do not conduct their affairs each day of the week as though He was their Lord. This is symptomatic of at least 2 things:

    1) Institutionalized christianity, and/or
    2) Christians have not actually met the Lord and become born again.

    I met Christ in the most real and way in 1981, and there is no way anybody meeting Christ (like I did) could possibly remain the same as they were.

    • Tony says:


      Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts. We agree… 1) there may be more to this than meets the eye, 2) nobody should dismiss any passage of Scripture, and 3) most who claim to be Christian are not actually doing much about following Jesus. I’m happy to read about your own transformation, as you are my brother.

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