Re: SIGATW in 1 Cor 14:34

From: Paul S. Dixon (
Date: Sat Jun 28 1997 - 21:11:57 EDT

On Sat, 28 Jun 1997 15:29:49 -0400 Jonathan Robie
<> writes:
>At 10:29 PM 6/27/97 EDT, Paul S. Dixon wrote:
>Paul acknowledges that both men and women were praying and
>prophesying. In
>verses 4 - 16, he says that women should cover their heads when they
>do so,

He says if they pray or prophesy, then their heads should be covered.
He does not say they should pray or prophesy. Big difference.

>and men should not. If he didn't want women to prophesy, why would he
>that they should cover their heads when doing so? How can a woman
>cover her
>head when praying or prophesying if she isn't supposed to pray or
>in the first place?

Jonathan, you are assuming that when Paul assumes something, then
he is condoning it. Not so. There are plenty of examples in Pauline
literature where he assumes things (for the sake of argument) in order
to affirm something else. For example, in 1 Cor 7:10 Paul says a woman
should not leave her husband. In the very next verse he says, "but if
she does leave, then let her remain unmarried." Are we to infer from v.
that Paul approves of a woman leaving her husband? Of course not.
If more examples are desired, let me know.

The question in 1 Cor 11:5 then becomes, what then is Paul's point?
Answer: he is merely arguing for the shamefulness of the Corinthian
women uncovering their heads in the worship service (in general?),
and particularly when it was done in such a flaunting manner while
praying or prophesying.
>>Jonathan: I disagree. 1 Cor 11: 5 can be accurately represented
>>logically as an "All P are Q" proposition where:
>> P = all women who pray or prophesy with heads uncovered, and
>> Q = same women shame their heads.
>>This, of course, is equivalent to the conditional proposition:
>> If P, then Q.
>>The negation of this is, "If not P, then not Q." It fits perfectly.
>>And, of course, the negation is not a valid inference.
>The negation would be: if women do not pray or prophesy with heads
>uncovered, they do not shame their heads. Do you mean to imply that

Nope, the negation is: if women do not pray or prophesy with heads
COVERED, they do not shame their heads.

>women to pray might shame their heads, or that for women to prophesy
>heads uncovered might shame their heads, or both? I agree, this
>passage does
>not formally prove that a woman does not shame her head by praying or
>prophesying with her head uncovered, nor does it prove that such a

Nope again. This passage DOES prove that a woman shames her head
by praying or prophesying with her head uncovered. Surely you see this.
I think it must have been a typo.

>might not shame her head in some other way. But the argument you have
>constructed avoids the issue that Paul gave women instructions on what
>to do
>when they pray or prophesy, under the assumption that they do both.

Good point, but I just answered this above.
>At this point, I think I've said as much as I care to on your
>discussion of
>the negative inference fallacy, and since it isn't really directly
>to any questions of biblical Greek, maybe we should drop it.

If this is your pleasure, fine. But, since this dialogue is between
at most the 3 of us, we certainly have the liberty to go on, as
Ed Hobbs mentioned.
If my interaction becomes tedious or boring to you, that's one
thing. Just tell me, and I'll bug off. But, I sense this is an area
that could be of tremendous benefit to you (and to others).


Paul Dixon

P.S., Any progress on the wave files for reading of the Greek?

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