God's word in today's world

Behaving with a pocket full of respect

1 Corinthians 11:1-16

Paul reprimanded women who didn’t wear hats and he also targeted men who either prayed with a head covering or who had long hair. Is this still applicable to us today? Because if this is so, a lot of women will have to buy hats. And then it was quite unacceptable of me to wear long hair during my student days.

It is important to go about with the Scripture responsibly and not take every sentence literally. We need to realize that the Bible was written in the context of 2 000 year ago. They lived differently then and had different practices.  When we read that Paul’s women had to wear hats and men had to have short haircuts, it doesn’t mean we need to adopt those customs today. We need to look at the moral behind it. Here it is: respect. We should respect one another and above all, God. 4So a man who prays or proclaims God’s message in public worship with his head covered disgraces Christ.

We need to remember who God is. God is not our friend. He is not the next door neighbour whom we chat to over the fence.  No, God is the Almighty, the Creator and He deserves to be treated with respect. When we use God’s Name in vain – for instance in astonishment – or when we use his Name as a conjunction or full stop, we show no respect.

When Moses walked in the desert and saw the burning bush, he walked towards it boldly to see what was going on. But when he heard God’s voice, he didn’t wait. He immediately fell to the ground and respectfully took off his shoes. I think our problem is that we see God as our friend, our buddy from around the corner. That is why we behave familiarly and talk without consideration to God. It is not right. God remains God, even though He came down to earth and died for our sins. Even though He takes our hand and even though He walks with us every day with his Holy Spirit, He is still God and we should treat Him with respect.

When we manage this, we will treat one another with respect and then our children will also pick it up. So many kids do not know about respect, because they do not see it in their own homes especially in the relationship between mom and dad. It is so sad.

Just a while ago we built a study on the side of the house and we saw this as an opportunity to teach the kids something. How do you handle everyone in the yard? We taught them that it does not matter what the men in their overalls look like and how dusty they are, you still have to treat them as your superior, someone older than you, someone from whom you can learn how to work for a living and use your talents.

When we think about it, we might have to admit that we need to dust off our respect for others. I really want others to see God through my actions. That is why I have to be cautious and ask if my behaviour towards others always reflects respect, whether it is the builders or my wife or kids, because it tells the story of my respect for God.


How much respect do you have for God?

How much respect do you have for your friend, colleague, children or a stranger?

Can people see my respect for God through my behaviour towards others?


Lord, I know that my respect for You is not what it should be when I communicate with others, especially when I don’t get what I want. I love You and want to respect You. Help me to stand back once in a while and blow off some steam before I get out of control too quickly. Amen

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