Sunday, November 24, 2013

Christian Women in the Workforce Part 1

Titus 2-4-5  “That they may teach the younger women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, subject to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

 There has often been a debate among the Christian community whether a married woman and mother should have a career outside the home.  This debate is also among the secular society better known as the “The Mommy Wars” but among Christians in remains even more prevalent.   It would seem like a surprise that in today’s more equal society that such a question still exists since women have fought for the right to more equal opportunities in the workforce and proven they can juggle career and family.  However, among Christians many still believe that a wife and mother shouldn’t work but instead her role in life is to be a full time primary caregiver of the house doing domestic work and bringing up the children.  Some say she can be allowed to do volunteer work or a ministry but her basic role is taking care of the house and kids unless she doesn’t have a choice to work but she shouldn’t desire to have a job for other reasons.  Others  who have a more modern outlook, may reason a wife can work provided that she doesn’t neglect her duties since the domestic work and child rearing is still primary her job.  

These biases against working wives and mothers still remain in the Christian culture with different opposing view points.  Some have the mindset that if a woman works full time that her home and children are being neglected without considering the ages of the children or if her husband is contributing to the household chores.  Or mothers who put their children in daycare or leave the with a babysitter are also quickly judged without considering how many hours she works, if she is doing volunteer work or is she is a single mother.  I've continued to read biased views on married women and mothers to have jobs outside the home.  One blog I read, a male commenter stated he was against even young widows with children to work and expected to the church to provide for her.  Another article I read by a pastor, where he even praised an unmarried woman for deciding to have a part time job instead of a full time one.   I even read comments from Christian women who do work outside the home and they some claim they have been shunned or judged by others from their church their churches doesn’t have ministry that supports them also. 

Having myself been raised by a working mother and have women in my family who were working mothers mostly because they had to, I’m perplexed when I read such ideas about women in workforce especially in modern times.  It does seem from what I’ve read many in the Christian community favor stay at home wives and use them as the model as what a godly woman is while frowning upon and discouraging women who have jobs.  I started to wonder why do many Christians hold onto such a view and then I realized part of it is due to many Christians have more conservative mindset and in which they still hold  onto traditional cultural gender roles in the home.  The reason for this is also because many believe the bible commands this with the verse Titus 2:4-5 referring to women as keepers at home.  For some this means that the woman should stay at home and raise the children, others also interpret it may imply women should stay at home at least until the children are in school then work part time while some more patriarchal groups believe it forbids any woman from working outside the home regardless if she is married or not. 

After studying and researching the scripture, I’ve have to disagree with all these notions.  Apostle Paul didn’t say women should be keepers at home until children go to school or pre-school or that only mothers should be keepers at the home.   He said the older women should teach the younger women to be keepers at the home and be subject to their husbands, which indicates he was referring to married women.  So whether a wife had children or not she is to be the keeper at the home.  Many Christians mistake the phrase "keeper at the home" to mean homemaker, housekeeper or workers at home but that is not its true meaning.  In Greek the phrase is translated to the word "oikouros".  This word is often wrongly translated to mean stayer at home but it really means watcher, guardian or warden of the home.  Even Proverbs 31: 27 states “She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.”  In older Greek manuscripts the word is translated as "oikourgos" which means to keep, caring for and taking care of the home.  The phrase is used again in the verse Ecclesiastes 12:3 "In the day when the keepers of the house tremble, and the strong men are bent, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those who look through the windows are dimmed,".  In This verse, "keepers of the house" refers to the male guards who guard the palace

The history behind the verse Titus 2:4-5 was that Paul  and his protege Titus travelled around the world on a missionary journey and he left Titus on the Mediterranean Island of Crete to plant churches.  The people on the Island had a bad reputation of being mean-sprited, lazy, drunkards and liars and still undedr pagan influence.  Older women would enganing in drunkiness and the younger women women would neglect their homes hanging out in the cities getting involved in various cults as well.  Paul wasn't limiting women's role to the home but simply telling them not to negelct their homes. Being the keeper at home isn’t about being a housewife, doing all domestic tasks  and looking after the children all day, it’s about the wife making what goes on in her home her first priority and making sure not to neglect her family or respsonsibities.  She watches over her home by being alert and attentive to the needs and going-ons of her family first and foremost.  She can do this a variety ways, be it being aware of what outside or TV influences are affecting her children.  Making sure her kids grow spirituality learning biblical lessons or having time for them to teach, listen and know what’s going on in their lives.   Also being attentive to the husband’s needs, being there for him when he needs her to be to listen, give wisdom or be a shoulder to cry etc.  Basically, she should never be too busy or lazy that causes her to neglect the wellbeing of her family and home, whether she is a housewife, she has a career, does volunteer work or involved in church ministry. 

Another verse that is used to claim wives are meant to stay home and tend to the domestic affairs, is Timothy 5:14  So I would have younger widows marry, bear children, manage their households, and give the adversary no occasion for slander.” The Greek word manage in this verse is "oikodespoteo" which many mistake to imply manager of the domestic affairs but really means to rule or to head the household.  The history behind this verse was about widows.  About this time, older widows over the age of 60, who didn't have families  to take care of them were put on a list by the church who would support them.  However, younger widows weren't put on the list, because they may desire to remarry which may even cause some to sin, or with time on their hands may cause some to become idle gossipy busybodies going to different homes and gossping about things they shouldn't   To prevent this Paul was instructing the younger widows to remarry instead and focus on running their own homes and bringing up their children.  

During the culture at the time, many wives kept and managed their homesby working from home, doing mainly the domestic tasks and bringing up and educating their children since they weren’t in schools back them. Some homes had servants or slaves to help with the chores.  However, in today’s society managing a home can be done in a variety ways other than domestic work.  Some woman manage their homes by working outside the home and sharing in the financial duties, others may stay at home and mainly take care of the domestic tasks, shopping and child care, some may even homeschool, or/and may work from home possibly with a home-based business to earn some extra money for family, or may be responsible for the family budget.  Bottom line is there isn’t a one size fits all way of how a wife should take care her home and family.  

I truly believe that women are gifted in many different ways, and should be allowed to express those gifts in any calling being in or outside the home, be it a housewife in a career, charity work or ministry so long that her first priority is that of a wife and mother who ensures the wellbeing of her family fore-most.  As it  has been said, the woman is the heart of the home who is the glue that holds the family together.  There is verse Proverbs 14: 1 “A wise woman builds her home, but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands”.  A woman can build up her home b cooperating with her husband in running the home, and strive to ensure a nurturing, loving healthy environment. Or she can tear it down by neglecting her family, constantly arguing with her husband or yelling at her children, causing chaos and an unhealthy environment.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

The Wife's Role in The Marriage

Genesis 2:18 “The LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”

Since I already explained about the husband’s role in the Christian marriage, I now wanted to take the time to define exactly what the wife’s role in the marriage is.  There have been contradictions on just what this role wife in a Christian marriage with many believing the wife is a subordinate who allows her husband have the final authority in the home.   I don’t agree with this theory.  As I stated before, I believe marriage is a partnership between two equals with neither having a lessor or subordinate role even though.   I also don’t agree with the complete roleless gender-neutral marriage either as the more progressive side supports.  Only the man can be the husband and the father and only a woman can be the wife and mother in the home.  

However, just as the bible said the husband was the head, it also states that the wife is the helper or better known as the help meet.  Many view helper as an assistant like a personal assistant or secretary in an office implying a secondary role.  However, the word helper in the bible means something different.  The Hebrew translation of helper is ezer.  This word means to give aid, to rescue, lifesaver and strength.  Ezer/help is used over twenty times in the Old Testament sometimes referring to god as our help.  A few examples are Psalm 20:2 -“May he send you help from the sanctuary and grant you support from Zion” Psalm 33:20 -“We put our hope in the Lord.  He is our help and our shield.”  Finally, Exodus 18:4- “The other was named Eliezer, for he said, The God of my father was my help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh."  The word suitable in Hebrew is kenegdo which means alongside, facing, opposite, corresponding to, and counterpart. 

In other words, god created woman as counterpart for the man to rescue him from a life of lonliness, give aid or be a source of strength to him in life.  She is to be his companion equal in status not a subservient.  The wife can be these things in various ways.  She is a supporter who supports her husband in everyway, examples include offering him wisdom, counsel, input, building him up and encouraging him in his spiritual gifts and callings and to be what god designs him to be.  To always strive to motivate him in spirituality, in his goals in god given talents, in improving in areas he’s lacking.  Don’t do it by nagging, criticizing or yelling, but by being, humble, patient, caring, compassionate and understanding.  Be willing to share some of the burdens of everyday life, rather than just expect the husbands to shoulder all the burdens.  This can include a variety of things, such as including herself in making major decisions with her husband, be willing to work outside the home if you all can’t afford to just live off his income alone or take over the role of the sole breadwinner if for whatever reason he is unable to work. 

The wife should also serve his needs just as he serves hers, and see to it that his needs are met be it a romantic way, emotional, spiritual or domestic way etc.   Another way, is to simply listen to him as tells her what he needs from her.  The wife too, has the responsibility not to neglect her husband but put him first or foremost in the marriage.  Most importantly, the wife is to respect her husband.  Ephesians 5: 33- “However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband”.   A wife should respect her husband even if he isn’t the best provider, doesn’t do enough around the house, or make the best decisions etc.   She shouldn’t belittle or condemn him by always pointing out his faults but appreci-ate what he does do and try to help him improve in other areas.  Mostly respect him as a man since men’s needs of respect may slightly differ than that of women.   On average, men need to feel needed, to feel like good provider and the protector of the home even if the wife is a co-provider or earning more, he still needs to feel like useful as the man of house.   He also needs to have his wife not constantly second-guess what he does or decides by be in his corner.  Also, rather endless competing with him for control, allow him to sometimes take the lead or take charge of a situation(not in a controlling  or domineering way) which is another basic need of most men.  

In today’s society, where many women are taught to be independent, many have taking it too far.   Many women get caught up proving they don’ need their husbands to take care of them, protect them etc in order to take care of themselves.   Sometimes, they emasculate them, make them feel not needed or criticize them for not doing things in the home the way they would, can’t understand that men are not hardwired like women or constantly feel the need to compete with them to feel equal.  That concludes another duty of the wife to submit.  There are few scriptures in the bible instructing wives to submit to her husbands.  Ephesians 5: 22 “Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord”.   Ephesians 5: 24 “Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything”.  1Peter 3:1 “Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives”.  Titus 2:5 “To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed”. 

 Although, I will do a later post on what submission means, I will point out that that submission doesn’t mean subservience, being a slave, an inferior or a doormat or blind obedience.  It also doesn’t imply not having a voice or your own opinions or never being allowed to disagree with your husband.   It does mirror the church’s submission to Christ.  It does involve a cooperating attitude, casting aside your own pride, self-sacrifice, and act of love.  The acts of submission will differ in marriages but regardless, and it won’t always be perfect but regardless a wife should submit always strive to submit to her husband.  Finally, the wife is to be complete her husband just as the husband completes her.  They are source of unity, where they mutually depend on another growing oneness in Christ as each other’s other half.   Instead of just a “she”, they are now a “we”, a team. 

I conclusion, the wife is a companion, aid, a strength, a completer to her husband as they grow together in Christ.

Saturday, November 9, 2013


Ephesians 5:23-33 “23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing[a] her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”[b] 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”

After posting an article of the true meaning of the word head in the bible wanted to discuss wanted it’s meaning regarding the role of the husband.   There are two different branches in the Christian community who have opposing views on this subject.  On the complementarian side, they believe men and women are equal under god with different roles in the marriage in which there is a hierarchy with the husband being the spiritual leader who has the final authority.  The motto is equal under god but not equal in roles and function.  However, within this camp the majority are known as soft-complementarians who believe rather than hierarchy, the husband has responsibility to lead not rule the family spirituality and that doesn’t have to contradict gender equality in marriage.  Often in this type of marriage, couples are encourage to make major decisions together whenever possible and only when no agreement or compromise is reached than the husband has head makes the final decision.  This isn’t seen as a privilege for the husband to always get his own way, rather a duty to decide what best for everyone taking the wife’s feelings, wisdom and input into con-sideration.  On the other side is the egalitarian group, who basically believe in gender-neutral roles in marriage and in life in general where there is mutual submission.  Some may even argue the most gifted can take the lead in the marriage. 

 I myself am not 100% in either of these two camps and don’t entirely agree neither of these ideals.  After giving my own views of the true meaning of the word head,(go back and read my post on this subject) I reject the idea of any hierarchy where the husband has a superior position over his wife in which it contradicts equality in marriage.  Also, I don’t buy into the idea of a roleless marriage especially since the bible does say the he husband is the head of the wife.  One idea is often used to justify chauvinist attitudes, power and control in the marriage, the other is used to the justify another extreme that abandons certain duties of self-sacrifice on the husband’s part, and may cause some gender lines to blur too much in attempt for gender equality.  After analyzing the biblical word head and relating it to Jesus’s role to the church I want attempt to explore what it really means on the husband’s role in the marriage.  First, I want to point out despite what many have claimed the bible doesn’t say the husband is the head of the household.  If Paul had said husbands were the head of the household, he would have used the Greek word "oikodespotes" which means head or master of the household rather than the word kephale.  Instead he said the husband was the head of the wife as Jesus was the head of the church.  Paul was relating the husband/wife relationship with that of Jesus and the church.  Also note he said the husband was the head of not over the wife as others have claimed.  I say this to clarify that the husband isn’t over his wife as if he is above her or has a senior position over her.  So what does the husband being the wife’s head really mean?  

For a long while, I viewed the word head(kephale) used in the military fashion where the husband is like a point man who is out in front taking the greatest burden of spiritually guiding his wife in self-sacrificial, self-giving manner that resembles Christ as his wife follows on equal footing.  This to me made sense and rejected both the notions of hierarchy and of a roleless marriage.  However, I have kind of changed my views of this simply because I re-read the scripture really paid attention to the verse “as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.”   As I said before, several scriptures refer to the Church as Christ’s body and Christ as the head.  Even Ephesians 5:30 states: “For we are members of his body”.  I now view this as a head/body metaphor when referring to the husband’s relationship to his wife.  I also read the verse: “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her”.  I also came to the conclusion that the husband is still to be the initiator in acting in a way that is Christ-like.  This doesn’t mean he has to be Jesus to his wife for which is not possible but strive to follow Christ’s example in regarding his relationship to his wife. The one thing the husband should actually take the lead in or initiate is a sacrificial love for his wife as Jesus sacrificially loved the church that he gave his life up to it.  In fact, the Greek word for love is "agape" which doesn’t just mean love alone but a self-sacrificial love.  

Another Christ-like manner is to initiate servant’s attitude as Jesus himself didn’t come to be served but to serve others.  He demonstrated this, by washing the Disciples feet(John 13:1-17) and also by cooking meat and bread for them in John 21:9-14.  A husband should have a self-giving, servant's heart based on humility.  Rather than just expect how his wife can serve his needs, he should focus on how to serve hers striving to ensure her needs are met. This will sometimes differ in many marriages as each wife needs will differ.  This may include a variety of ways, from conrtibuting to the household chores, supporting her an her choices outside the home, keeping romance alive etc. Bottom line the godly husband first priority is her well-being and he never neglects this duty.

As for the head/body metaphor, the husband should be a source of unity to his wife joined together with neither able to function without the other with mutual interdependence.  The husband and wife are now in oneness with each other as “one flesh” instead of a “me’ it’s now a “we” as the wife is his other half of one whole, in completion with him. The husband is also the head is also the source of life and growth of his wife, as the body.  In this way, he nourishes her spiritual growth as he encourages her to grow spirituality, be more holy and using her god-giving gifts and talents and to be what god intended her to be.  He is her sustainer where he strives to build her up, uplifting and empower her to help bring out her strengths or give his strengths to her such as being her rock when she is vulnerable.  The husband's sacrificial love shoulde  make her radiant in which he encoures her to glorious bringing out the best in her where her inner beauty shines.  He also gives her equal respect in the marriage.  Ephesians 5:28:  “So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.”  In this way, the husband is to care for his wife he would his own body, including providing for her, protecting and defending her and respecting her.  The husband is to love, respect, honor and cherish is wife in the same way he wishes to be respected, honored and cherished.  He doesn’t mistreat her in any way he wouldn’t like to be mistreated. 

Then there is the verse 1 Peter 3:7:  “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, giving honor unto the woman, as unto the weaker vessel, as being also joint-heirs of the grace of life; so that your prayers not be hindered.”  Many believe the term the weaker vessel implies inferiority be it intellectually, spiritually, mentally, morally or just having a lesser role in the marriage.  These words have used this word to justify male chauvinism.  However, others see the phrase a cultural term referring to the woman’s weaker legal status and that it doesn’t imply anymore.  I don’t agree with neither ideas.  Having studied the words in Greek, the word weaker translates to "asthenes" which means strengthless, more fragile, feeble, impotent, a limited capacity to do or be something and used literally in physical weakness. The Greek word for vessel is "skeuos" which means container, jar, household utensil, instrument, merchandise, object, property or sometimes when used as vessel it was meant as a metaphor for a human body.  In this way, the wife being the weaker vessel could refer to her being physically weaker since on average men are naturally stronger in physical strength and stature.  It can also mean that the wife is to be treated more delicately, more softly and gently like a delicate vase.  The Greek words for joint-heirs are translated to the word "sugkleronomos".  This word means fellow heir, joint participant, one who obtains something assigned to himself with others.  

In the past, men have used their superior strength to oppress and intimidate their wives and treat them as inferiors, as well as be insensitive to the woman’s more emotional and sensitive nature treating them so harshly.  Some of this still goes on today.  Of course, also in today’s society, the pendulum has swung too far the other way, as some men have used equality to ignore gender distinctions and justify ungallant behavior and not treat them with special care, the new attitudes is if women want to be equal treat them like men.  However, the godly husband will honor his wife as the weaker vessel meaning treating her more gently, be considerate in areas she’s more vulnerable like less physical strength, the fact the she expresses her emotions more than he does, and her body is more delicate in certain areas and built to bearing children etc.  Such examples could mean offering her traditional gestures like opening the door, including the car door for her, helping her with her coat or carrying the heavier stuff rather allow her to struggle, be protective when required, catering to her special needs when pregnant etc.  Yet, the husband should remember that she is still a fellow heir in god’s kingdom deserving of being held to equal regard in personhood and in the marriage including being a co-partner in parenting, property rights, and managing the home.  Many have mistaken Paul as chauvinist but in his day husbands regarded their wives as property.  Paul made a radical statement told husbands to love their wives in comparison to how Jesus loved the church that he gave himself up to it and placing women on more equal standing by insisting husbands love and care for their wives as their own bodies and be one flesh with them.  

In conclusion, the husband’s role as the head isn’t about being the leader who makes the final decisions.  Marriages work best when both couples make decisions mutually always striving to find common ground and compromise when needed.  His role is about being the initiator of a sacrificial self-giving love to his wife in which he is her  supporter, builder, uplifter, nourisher, completer and protector just as Christ is all these things to the church.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Meaning of The Biblical Word Head, Boss, Leader or Source?

Ephesians 5: 23:  For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior”.

My first post is about the word "head" and it's true meaning in the biblical sense, since this word is often controversial in the Christian community as various Christians and scholars have various definitions of the word.  Many Christians have taken the above verse to mean that the husband is the boss, superior rank or ruler who has a higher authority and power in the marriage.  These folks will reason that the government, school, or organization needs a head who’s in charge so why not in marriage?  Some more patriarchal groups think it doesn’t just refer to male authority in marriage but male authority in general even to fathers and unmarried daughters or male pastors. They get this idea from the bible verse 1 Corinthians 11:3: “But I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God". 

 I always been frustrated with this type of thinking and can’t help but believe it is based chauvinism and patriarchy.  This type of thinking as caused many conflicts in marriage where husbands confused their position as power to rule or dominate their wives sometimes in a very abusive manner.  Of course, there are some Christian groups who will say it’s okay for the husband to rule over their wives as long as they do it in a loving way.  Then, there are those who soften the word even further stating that the husband is to lead lovingly rather than rule over.  Growing up in a home where my parents had a marriage based on equal partnership where there are no power plays, I can’t help feel skeptical and even bothered by the idea of the husband having authority over his wife.  I honesty believe that if god created men and women to be equal in god’s kingdom and equal in worth and value in personhood, that should include marriage. 

On the other side, other Christian groups believe the word simply means source.  However, this didn’t satisfy me enough because I wanted to learn the truth of the biblical meanings not just what satisfies me.  In the past, I’ve even asked both my parents on this subject and they both gave me their input of the meaning but I still wanted to do some research on this subject matter.  After studying the research over the internet numerous times off and on over couple of years, I’ve finally come to a conclusion on what the word means.  My conclusions are not simply based what is convenient or what satisfies me but what I really makes sense to me and why I believe the true meaning. 
First from what I’ve learned, the biblical meaning of the word head isn’t the same as the typical English meaning.  In Greek translation, the word head is "kephale".  Kephale can be used to mean source of life.  This could be what meaning in 1 Corinthians 11:3.  After all, god created Adam in his own image, then he created Eve by using the Adam’s rib.  Kephale also means the physical head of a body.  In the bible, numerous times the church is metaphorically referred to as Christ’s body and Jesus as the head.  Romans 12 4 5: “For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others”.  Colossians 1:18 -"And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all [things] he might have the preeminence".  1 Corinthians 12:12-13 - “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit”.  1 Corinthians 12:27: “Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it”.  Ephesians 1:22-23:  And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way”.  
Basically, Paul was using a head/body metaphor in which each member of the church function as one body giving their individual talents and gifts to it.  Jesus is the head joined together with the church in unity giving life and energy to it and nourishing it in order for the church to grow and function.  In this way, Jesus is also the source of life of the church being it's originator and source of growth, breathing life into it and bringing it to completion.  Some may argue doesn’t the head control the body?  Actually the brain controls your entire body.  Besides, Since the human head and body are joined together and if the head was cut off the entire body would die.  Jesus and the church are joined together in unity and oneness.  Also,  as I think about it more, we normally take care of and nourish our bodies by feeding it properly and thus our bodies grow healthy.   If we starve and don’t take care of our bodies properly, we can die or become unhealthy.  In order to allow the church to live and continue to grow, Jesus as its head, feeds the entire body, nourishing and taking care of it properly. 
Another meaning of kephale is foremost in terms of position, like a cornerstone in a foundation or capstone over a door.  Jesus is often described in the bible as the head cornerstone of the church.  Psalm 118:22-23:  The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. This was the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes”.  Ephesians 2:20 :  “Having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone”.  Acts 4:11 : “This is the stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone”.  In these verses, the chief cornerstone can also mean the head of the corner.  In biblical times, the cornerstone was the first stone laid at the corner of the building of two intersecting walls.  This was the most important stone, since if removed the entire building would collapse.  Metaphorically, Jesus is considered the head cornerstone of the church and the two walls are the Jews and the gentiles who are now joined together by Jesus as a foundation.  He has brought both groups together as one. 
A final meaning for the word kephale, is military term which refers to the one  who is out in front leading the troop.  This is not the job of a higher ranking officer, but rather a point man who is the first solider of a troop or a platoon heading into battle, taking the greatest risks.  He takes his orders from a commanding officer who is usually out in the rear.  Although I don’t know if this term as any relation to Jesus, some may argue that once again Paul was using a metaphor in which Jesus is out in front leading the way for his church out of sacrificial love in which he even gives up his life for it when he allowed himself to be crucified.   I myself, am not completely sure any more although I used to stubbornly support this theory.   Head was also translated for another Greek word "ache/archon".  Arche means point of origin, first in terms of importance and beginning, while Archon means ruler, chief, magistrate and leader.  These words were never used in  the scriptures Ephesians 5:23 or 1 Corinthians 11:3.  The Hebrew word "ro’sh" could also be translated to either arche/archon or kephale depending on how it’s used.   As for the word authority, the Greek word is "exousia" which also is never used in the two verses.
In summary, the true biblical meaning of the word head(kephale) isn’t boss, ruler or the one in charge.  It’s meaning in relation to Jesus and the church is metaphorically Jesus is the head and the church is the body joined together in unity and oneness.  The source of life and growth and in which Jesus is the originator, completer and nourisher of the church giving it life and nourishing and nurturing its growth and bringing strength to it.  As the head cornerstone, Jesus is  first in position in building up the church uplifting it giving huge support as a foundation.  My next post will discuss head as the husband’s role in marriage.