1 Become you imitators of me, even as I also am of Christ.
Q x 2. Praise of the obedient. y 3. A revealed principle. Y 4-6. Result. Y 7-12. Reasons. y 13-15. Nature's teachings. x 16. Rejection of the contentious.
2 Now I praise (or commend) you, brethren, that you remember me in all things, and hold fast (see 1 Thess. 5:21) the ordinances, as I delivered them to you. (See John 19:30)
3 But I would that you should know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman (i.e. wife) is the man; and the head of Christ is God.
4 Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonors his head. (i.e. Christ in Whom he has access to God with unveiled face [2 Cor. 3:18])
5 But every woman that prays or prophesies with her head unveiled dishonors her head: for that is one and the same with a shaven [one]. (If she discards the covering which is the symbol of her position, she may as well discard that which nature has given)
6 For if the woman be not covered, let her also be sheared: but if it be a shame for a woman to be sheared or shaven (see Acts 8:32), let her be covered.
Y z¹ 7-. Man. His glory. a¹ -7. Woman. Her glory. z² 8-. Man. His origin. a² -8. Woman. Her origin. z³ 9-. Man. Purpose of his creation. a³ -9.,10. Woman. Purpose of her creation. z4 11. Mutual dependence in the Lord. a4 12. Mutual relationship by the ordinances of God.
7 For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, being originally the image and glory of God: (See Rom. 1:23. Cp. Gen. 1:27; 9:6)
but the woman is the glory of the man.
8 For the man is not of the woman:
but the woman of the man.
9 And truly the man was not created for the woman;
but the woman for the man.
10 On account of this ought the woman to have authority (Christ) on her head on account of of the angels. (Cp. Gen. 6:2. 2 Pet. 2:4. Jude 6)
11 Nevertheless neither is the man apart from the woman, neither the woman apart from the man, in the Lord.
12 For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also through the woman; but all things of God. (2 Cor. 5:18. Eph. 3:9)
13 Judge in yourselves: is it becoming that a woman pray to God unveiled?
14 Does not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man let the hair grow, it is a shame (perversion, because angels are male. Cp. Rom. 1:26) unto him?
15 But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair has been given her instead of a covering.
16 But if any one seem to be fond of strife, we have no such custom (see John 18:39), neither the churches of God.
17 Now in declaring this (see Acts 1:4) to you I praise you not, that you come together not for the better, but for the worse. (This was a voluntary assembling, not the authoritative "being gathered to His name" of Matt. 18:20)
18 For first of all, when you come together in assembly (No buildings were set apart for Christian worship so early as this), I hear that there be divisions among you; and I believe some part [of it] it. (or believe it on some part of you.)
19 For there must be sects also among you (see Acts 5:17), in order that they which are approved may become manifest among you. (This is the reason why divisions are permitted, but is no justification of them. Cp. 1 John 2:19)
20 When you come together therefore into one place (see Acts 2:1.), this is not to eat the Lord's Supper. (These were the social meals of the early church, called love feasts [2 Pet. 2:13. Jude 12], followed by the Lord's Supper. According to the Greek custom, each brought his own provisions, and while the rich fared sumptuously, the poor sometimes had little or nothing; for the spirit of division led to the exclusion by some of all who were not of their own party. Thus sectarianism invaded even the Lord's table.)
21 For in eating each one first takes other his own supper (thus the over-indulgence of some unfitted them for the ordinance): and one is hungry, and another is drunken.
22 For it is that you have not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise you the church of God, and shame them that have not?
what shall I say to you? shall I commend you in this? I commend you not.
A B 23-25. Revelation received. C b¹ 26. Worthy partaking. c¹ 27. Unworthy partaking. b² 28. Discerning oneself. c² 29,30. Not discerning the body. b³ 31. Self-judgment. c³ 32. The Lord's chastisement. B 33,34. Counsel given.
23 For I received of the Lord that which I delivered also to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed (see John 19:30) took bread:
24 And when He had given thanks (see Acts 27:35), He broke it, and said, "Take, eat: this represents (see Matt. 26:26) My body, which is broken on behalf of you: this do for My memorial." (Luke 22:19. Heb. 10:3)
25 Likewise He took the cup also, after He had supped, saying, "This cup is the new covenant represented by My blood: this do you, as often as you drink it, for My memorial.
26 For as often as you eat this bread, and drink this cup, you do proclaim the Lord's death till He come."
27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty in regard to the body and blood of the Lord.
28 But let a man test himself, and so (i.e. after this self-testing) let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.
29 For he that eats and drinks unworthily, eats and drinks condemnation (or judgment) to himself, not discerning the body. (That is, he does not recognize the common membership of all the saints [10:17].This was the sectarian and selfish spirit rebuked in vv.19-22.)
30 For this cause not a few are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. (This verse explains what the judgment of v.29 was. Temporal suffering, and even death. Cp. 1 John 5:16,17)
31 For if we were to judge ourselves, we should not be judged.
32 But when we are judged, we are chastened by the Lord (Cp. Heb. 12:6,7,10. Rev. 3:19), that we should not be condemned with the world. (This shows that the judgment of v.29 is not eternal judgment)
33 Wherefore, my brethren, when you come together for eat, wait one for another. (Cp. Acts 17:16. Jas. 5:7)
34 And if any man hunger, let him eat in the house; that you come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come. (See Acts 7:44)