Symbols of Submission
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Living in harmony with the roles God has given us is an honorable choice godly men and women voluntarily make. God doesn't force anyone to accept these roles, but He hopes that we will because living these roles as He intended leads to greater happiness now and a better understanding of His plan for us in the future.
Submission to God's expectations starts in our minds. It is first a way of thinking, as we learn what God desires, and then we can begin applying what we have learned. The results of our submission to God's instructions are then reflected in our attitude and outward appearance. We willingly accept our unique roles as males and females. The clothing we wear is modest (1 Timothy 2:9 1 Timothy 2:9In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with modesty and sobriety; not with braided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;
American King James Version×) and it indicates our gender (Deuteronomy 22:5 Deuteronomy 22:5The woman shall not wear that which pertains to a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination to the LORD your God.
American King James Version×).
Surprising to many, even our hair length demonstrates our submission to our role as either male or female. In 1 Corinthians 11, God tells us that long hair on a man "dishonors" God (verse 4). Reflecting upon this concept, a subsequent verse asks, "Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor ["shame," King James Version] to him?" (verse 14).
In contrast to God's expectation that men wear their hair short, God desires that women wear their hair longer because "if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her" (verse 15). Longer hair on a woman shows her respect for her husband and God (verses 5-10).
Following God's instructions for males and females often goes against the standards around us. But don't be discouraged. Living as God desires is the highest calling to which we can aspire! Let's "submit to God" (James 4:7 James 4:7Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
American King James Version×). Honor Him, and He will honor you (1 Samuel 2:30 1 Samuel 2:30Why the LORD God of Israel said, I said indeed that your house, and the house of your father, should walk before me for ever: but now the LORD said, Be it far from me; for them that honor me I will honor, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.
American King James Version×). VT