Getting closer to the end now with question 7:
Why should there be quarrels?
You know, I find it funny when people say that the veil was a cultural tradition for the Corinthians. I mean, if it were their cultural tradition then why on earth does Paul mention quarreling? Why were some of the Corinthians refusing the veil if it was simply a cultural tradition?
The same goes for the first question we tackled: would anyone complain if the head covering weren’t a physical item? Probably not.
Nevertheless, let’s move on.
In verse 16, Paul says,
But if one is inclined to be contentious …
– 1 Corinthians 11:16a NASB
I like the word used here, “inclined”. The Greek word is “dokei” and I’m not exactly sure whether it means “inclined” but everywhere else in the Bible that the same word is used, the impression given is an inclination or a tendency. A sort of “seems to be”.
I’m most probably wrong but the impression I get from this verse is that Paul here was directing his final words on the matter to those who tend to argue about everything.
Now, from what I’ve found, the New American Standard Bible has translated this verse almost exactly as the Greek but look how it came in other translations,
But if any man seems to be contentious … – New Heart English Bible
But if anyone wants to argue about this … – New Living Translation
If anyone wants to argue about this [they can’t] … – GOD’s WORD Translation
I hope you’re not going to be argumentative about this … – The Message (Yes, I quoted from it)
Regardless of which translation you look at, there’s this idea of someone wanting to argue for argument’s sake.
So, why should there be quarrels? Probably because the veil was something new that Paul was teaching them that some did not like; it wasn’t a metaphor, it wasn’t a cultural tradition, and it didn’t suit certain people.
Should there be quarrels? Absolutely not! Are there quarrels? Sadly, yes. Why the quarrels? A preference out of which the excuses are born.