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1 Corinthians Chapter Eleven


1 Corinthians 11

Observe here the way in which the apostle grounded his replies with regard to details on the highest and fundamental principles. This is the manner of Christianity (compare Titus 2:10-14). He introduces God and charity, putting man in connection with God Himself. In that which follows we have also a striking example of this. The subject is a direction for women.

They were not to pray without having their heads covered. To decide this question, simply of what was decent and becoming, the apostle lays open the relationship and the order of the relationship subsisting between the depositories of God's glory and Himself, [1] and brings in the angels, to whom Christians, as a spectacle set before them, should present that of order according to the mind of God. The head of the woman is the man; that of man is Christ; of Christ, God. This is the order of power, ascending to Him who is supreme. And then, with respect to their relationship to each other, he adds, the man was not created for the woman, but the woman for the man. And as to their relations with other creatures, intelligent and conscious of the order of the ways of God, they were to be covered because of the angels, who are spectators of the ways of God in the dispensation of redemption, and of the effect which this marvellous intervention was to produce. Elsewhere (see note below) it is added, in reference to the history of that which took place, the man was not deceived; but the woman, being deceived, transgressed first. Let us add-from the passage we are considering-that, as to creation, the man was not taken from the woman, but the woman from the man. Nevertheless the man is not without the woman, nor the woman without the man, in the Lord; but all things are of God;-and all this to regulate a question of modesty as to women, when in praying they were before the eyes of others. [2] The result-in that which concerns the details-is that the man was to have his head uncovered, because he represented authority, and in this respect was invested (as to his position) with the glory of God, of whom he was the image. The woman was to have her head covered, as a token that she was subject to the man (her covering being a token of the power to which she was subject). Man however could not do without woman, nor woman without man. Finally the apostle appeals to the order of creation, according to which a woman's hair, her glory and ornament, shewed, in contrast with the hair of man, that she was not made to present herself with the boldness of man before all. Given as a veil, her hair shewed that modesty, submission-a covered head that hid itself, as it were, in that submission and in that modesty-was her true position, her distinctive glory. Moreover, if any one contested the point, it was a custom which neither the apostle nor the assemblies allowed.

Observe also here that, however man may have fallen, divine order in creation never loses its value as the expression of the mind of God. Thus also in James, man is said to be created in the image of God. As to his moral condition, he needs (now that he has knowledge of good and of evil) to be born again, created in righteousness and in true holiness, that he may be the image of God as now revealed through Christ; but his position in the world, as the head and centre of all things-which no angel has been-is the idea of God Himself, as well as the position of the woman, the companion of his glory but subject to him; an idea which will be gloriously accomplished in Christ, and with respect to the woman in the assembly; but which is true in itself, being the constituted order of God, and always right as such: for the ordinance of God creates order, although, no doubt, His wisdom and His perfection are displayed in it.

The reader will remark, that this order in creation, as well as that which is established in the counsels of God in respect of the woman, of the man, of Christ, and of God Himself, and the fact that men-at least Christians under redemption-are a spectacle to angels (compare chap. 4:9), subjects which here I can only indicate, have the highest interest. [3] The apostle afterwards touches upon the subject of their assemblies. In verse 2 he had praised them; but on this point he could not do so (v. 17). Their assemblies manifested a spirit of division. This division concerned the distinction between the rich and the poor, but, as it seems, gave rise to others: at least others were necessary to make manifest those who were really approved of God. Now these divisions had the character of sects; that is to say, particular opinions divided Christians of the same assembly, of the assembly of God, into schools; they were hostile to each other, although they took the Lord's supper together-if indeed it could be said that they took it together. Jealousies that had arisen between the rich and the poor tended to foster the sectarian division. If, I observed, it could be said that they broke bread together; for each one took care to eat his own supper before the others did so, and some were hungry while others took their fill. This was not really eating the Lord's supper.

The apostle, guided by the Holy Ghost, seizes the opportunity to declare to them the nature and the import of this ordinance. We may notice here, that the Lord had taught it him by an especial revelation-proof of the interest that belongs to it, [4] and that it is a part of the Lord's mind in the entire christian walk, to which He attaches importance in view of our moral condition, and of the state of our spiritual affections individually, as well as those of the assembly. In the joy of christian liberty, amid the powerful effects of the presence of the Holy Ghost-of the gifts by which He manifested Himself in the assembly, the Lord's death, His broken body, was brought to mind, and, as it were, made present to faith as the basis and foundation of everything. This act of love, this simple and solemn deed, weak and empty in appearance, preserved all its importance. The Lord's body had been offered for us! to which the Holy Ghost Himself was to bear witness, and which was to maintain all its importance in the Christian's heart, and to be the foundation and centre of the edifice of the assembly. Whatever might be the power that shone forth in the assembly, the heart was brought back to this. The body of the Lord Himself had been offered, [5] the lips of Jesus had claimed our remembrance. This moral equilibrium is very important to saints. Power, and the exercise of gifts do not necessarily act upon the conscience and the heart of those to whom they are committed, nor of those always who enjoy their display. And, although God is present (and when we are in a good state, that is felt), still it is a man who speaks and who acts upon others; he is prominent. In the Lord's supper the heart is brought back to a point in which it is entirely dependent, in which man is nothing, in which Christ and His love are everything, in which the heart is exercised, and the conscience remembers that it has needed cleansing, and that it has been cleansed by the work of Christ-that we depend absolutely on this grace. The affections also are in the fullest exercise. It is important to remember this. The consequences that followed forgetfulness of the import of this ordinance confirmed its importance and the Lord's earnest desire that they should take heed to it. The apostle is going to speak of the power of the Holy Ghost manifested in His gifts, and of the regulations necessary to maintain order and provide for edification where they were exercised in the assembly; but, before doing so, he places the Lord's supper as the moral centre, the object of the assembly. Let us remark some of the thoughts of the Spirit in connection with this ordinance.

First, He links the affections with it in the strongest way. It was the same night on which Jesus was betrayed that He left this memorial of His sufferings and of His love. As the paschal lamb brought to mind the deliverance which the sacrifice offered in Egypt had procured for Israel, thus the Lord's supper called to mind the sacrifice of Christ. He is in the glory, the Spirit is given; but they were to remember Him. His offered body was the object before their hearts in this memorial. Take notice of this word "Remember." It is not a Christ as He now exists, it is not the realisation of what He is: that is not a remembrance-His body is now glorified. It is a remembrance of what He was on the cross. It is a body slain, and blood shed, not a glorified body. It is remembered, though, by those who are now united to Him in the glory into which He is entered. As risen and associated with Him in glory, they look back to that blessed work of love, and His love in it which gave them a place there. They drink also of the cup in remembrance of Him. In a word, it is Christ looked at as dead: there is not such a Christ now.

It is the remembrance of Christ Himself. It is that which attaches to Himself, it is not only the value of His sacrifice, but attachment to Himself, the remembrance of Himself. The apostle then shews us, if it is a dead Christ, who it is that died. Impossible to find two words, the bringing together of which has so important a meaning, The death of the Lord. How many things are comprised in that He who is called the Lord had died! What love! what purposes! what efficacy! what results! The Lord Himself gave Himself up for us. We celebrate His death. At the same time, it is the end of God's relations with the world on the ground of man's responsibility, except the judgment. This death has broken every link-has proved the impossibility of any. We shew forth this death until the rejected Lord shall return, to establish new bonds of association by receiving us to Himself to have part in them. It is this which we proclaim in the ordinance when we keep it. Besides this, it is in itself a declaration that the blood on which the new covenant is founded has been already shed; it was established in this blood. I do not go beyond that which the passage presents; the object of the Spirit of God here, is to set before us, not the efficacy of the death of Christ, but that which attaches the heart to Him in remembering His death, and the meaning of the ordinance itself. It is a dead, betrayed Christ whom we remember. The offered body was, as it were, before their eyes at this supper. The shed blood of the Saviour claimed the affections of their heart for Him. They were guilty of despising these precious things, if they took part in the supper unworthily. The Lord Himself fixed our thoughts there in this ordinance, and in the most affecting way, at the very moment of His betrayal.

But if Christ attracted the heart thus to fix its attention there, discipline was also solemnly exercised in connection with this ordinance. If they despised the broken body and the blood of the Lord by taking part in it lightly, chastisement was inflicted. Many had become sick and weak, and many had fallen asleep, that is, had died. It is not the being worthy to partake that is spoken of, but the partaking in an unworthy manner. Every Christian, unless some sin had excluded him, was worthy to partake because he was a Christian. But a Christian might come to it without judging himself, or appreciating as he ought that which the supper brought to his mind, and which Christ had connected with it. He did not discern the Lord's body; and he did not discern, did not judge, the evil in himself. God cannot leave us thus careless. If the believer judges himself, the Lord will not judge him; if we do not judge ourselves, the Lord judges; but when the Christian is judged, he is chastened of the Lord that he may not be condemned with the world. It is the government of God in the hands of the Lord who judges His own house: an important and too much forgotten truth. No doubt the result of all is according to the counsels of God, who displays in it all His wisdom, His patience, and the righteousness of His ways; but this government is real. He desires the good of His people in the end; but He will have holiness, a heart whose condition answers to that which He has revealed (and He has revealed Himself), a walk which is its expression. The normal state of a Christian is communion, according to the power of that which has been revealed. Is there failure in this-communion is lost, and with it the power to glorify God, a power found nowhere else. But if one judges oneself, there is restoration: the heart being cleansed from the evil by judging it, communion is restored. If one does not judge oneself, God must interpose and correct and cleanse us by discipline-discipline which may even be unto death (see Job 33, 36; 1 John 5:16; James 5:14, 15).

There are yet one or two remarks to be made. To "judge" oneself, is not the same word as to be "judged" of the Lord. It is the same that is used in chapter 11:29, "discerning the Lord's body." Thus, what we have to do is not only to judge an evil committed, it is to discern one's condition, as it is manifested in the light-even as God Himself is in the light-by walking in it. This prevents our falling into evil either in act or thought. But if we have fallen, it is not enough to judge the action; it is ourselves we must judge, and the state of heart, the tendency, the neglect, which occasioned our falling into the evil-in a word, that which is not communion with God or that which hinders it. It was thus theLord dealt with Peter. He did not reproach him for his fault, He judged its root.

Moreover the assembly ought to have power to discern these things. God acts in this way, as we have seen in Job; but the saints have the mind of Christ by the Spirit of Christ, and ought to discern their own condition.

The foundation and centre of all this, is the position in which we stand towards Christ in the Lord's supper, as the visible centre of communion and the expression of His death; in which sin, all sin, is judged. Now we are in connection with this holy judgment of sin as our portion. We cannot mingle the death of Christ with sin. It is, as to its nature and efficacy, of which the full result will in the end be manifested, the total putting away of sin. It is the divine negation of sin. He died to sin, and that in love to us. It is the absolute holiness of God made sensible and expressed to us in that which took place with regard to sin. It is absolute devotedness to God for His glory in this respect. To bring sin or carelessness into it, is to profane the death of Christ, who died rather than allow sin to subsist before God. We cannot be condemned with the world, because He has died and has put away sin for us; but to bring sin to that which represents this very death in which He suffered for sin is a thing which cannot be borne. God vindicates that which is due to the holiness and the love of a Christ who gave up His life to put away sin. One cannot say, I will not go to the table; that is, I will accept the sin and give up the confession of the value of that death. We examine ourselves, and we go; we re-establish the rights of His death in our conscience-for all is pardoned and expiated as to guilt, and we go to acknowledge these rights as the proof of infinite grace.

The world is condemned. Sin in the Christian is judged, it escapes neither the eye nor the judgment of God. He never permits it; He cleanses the believer from it by chastening him, although He does not condemn, because Christ has borne his sins, and been made sin for him. The death of Christ forms then the centre of communion in the assembly, and the touchstone of conscience, and that, with respect to the assembly, in the Lord's supper.


[1] In 1 Timothy 2:11-15 the moral effect of the circumstances of the fall is introduced, as giving the woman her true place in the assembly with regard to man.

[2] We are not as yet come to the order in the assembly. That commences with verse 17.

[3] The first chapter of Genesis gives us man in his place in creation as from God the Creator; the second, his own relationship with Jehovah God, where he was placed in connection with Him, and the woman's with himself.

[4] This connects itself too with the fact that it is the expression of the unity of the body-truth specially committed to the apostle. On the other hand, he was not sent to baptise. That was mere admission to the house already formed, and to which the apostle had been admitted like others.

[5] I do not say "broken", the best MSS. omitting it; but it is the memorial of Christ slain, and His precious blood poured out.

── John DarbySynopsis of 1 Corinthians


1 Corinthians 11

Chapter Contents

The apostle, after an exhortation to follow him, (1) corrects some abuses. (2-16) Also contentions, divisions, and disorderly celebrations of the Lord's supper. (17-22) He reminds them of the nature and design of its institution. (23-26) And directs how to attend upon it in a due manner. (27-34)

Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:1

(Read 1 Corinthians 11:1)

The first verse of this chapter seems properly to be the close to the last. The apostle not only preached such doctrine as they ought to believe, but led such a life as they ought to live. Yet Christ being our perfect example, the actions and conduct of men, as related in the Scriptures, should be followed only so far as they are like to his.

Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:2-16

(Read 1 Corinthians 11:2-16)

Here begin particulars respecting the public assemblies, 1 Corinthians 14. In the abundance of spiritual gifts bestowed on the Corinthians, some abuses had crept in; but as Christ did the will, and sought the honour of God, so the Christian should avow his subjection to Christ, doing his will and seeking his glory. We should, even in our dress and habit, avoid every thing that may dishonour Christ. The woman was made subject to man, because made for his help and comfort. And she should do nothing, in Christian assemblies, which looked like a claim of being equal. She ought to have "power," that is, a veil, on her head, because of the angels. Their presence should keep Christians from all that is wrong while in the worship of God. Nevertheless, the man and the woman were made for one another. They were to be mutual comforts and blessings, not one a slave, and the other a tyrant. God has so settled matters, both in the kingdom of providence and that of grace, that the authority and subjection of each party should be for mutual help and benefit. It was the common usage of the churches, for women to appear in public assemblies, and join in public worship, veiled; and it was right that they should do so. The Christian religion sanctions national customs wherever these are not against the great principles of truth and holiness; affected singularities receive no countenance from any thing in the Bible.

Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:17-22

(Read 1 Corinthians 11:17-22)

The apostle rebukes the disorders in their partaking of the Lord's supper. The ordinances of Christ, if they do not make us better, will be apt to make us worse. If the use of them does not mend, it will harden. Upon coming together, they fell into divisions, schisms. Christians may separate from each other's communion, yet be charitable one towards another; they may continue in the same communion, yet be uncharitable. This last is schism, rather than the former. There is a careless and irregular eating of the Lord's supper, which adds to guilt. Many rich Corinthians seem to have acted very wrong at the Lord's table, or at the love-feasts, which took place at the same time as the supper. The rich despised the poor, and ate and drank up the provisions they brought, before the poor were allowed to partake; thus some wanted, while others had more than enough. What should have been a bond of mutual love and affection, was made an instrument of discord and disunion. We should be careful that nothing in our behaviour at the Lord's table, appears to make light of that sacred institution. The Lord's supper is not now made an occasion for gluttony or revelling, but is it not often made the support of self-righteous pride, or a cloak for hypocrisy? Let us never rest in the outward forms of worship; but look to our hearts.

Commentary on 1 Corinthians 11:23-34

(Read 1 Corinthians 11:23-34)

The apostle describes the sacred ordinance, of which he had the knowledge by revelation from Christ. As to the visible signs, these are the bread and wine. What is eaten is called bread, though at the same time it is said to be the body of the Lord, plainly showing that the apostle did not mean that the bread was changed into flesh. St. Matthew tells us, our Lord bid them all drink of the cup, Matthew 26:27, as if he would, by this expression, provide against any believer being deprived of the cup. The things signified by these outward signs, are Christ's body and blood, his body broken, his blood shed, together with all the benefits which flow from his death and sacrifice. Our Saviour's actions were, taking the bread and cup, giving thanks, breaking the bread, and giving both the one and the other. The actions of the communicants were, to take the bread and eat, to take the cup and drink, and to do both in remembrance of Christ. But the outward acts are not the whole, or the principal part, of what is to be done at this holy ordinance. Those who partake of it, are to take him as their Lord and Life, yield themselves up to him, and live upon him. Here is an account of the ends of this ordinance. It is to be done in remembrance of Christ, to keep fresh in our minds his dying for us, as well as to remember Christ pleading for us, in virtue of his death, at God's right hand. It is not merely in remembrance of Christ, of what he has done and suffered; but to celebrate his grace in our redemption. We declare his death to be our life, the spring of all our comforts and hopes. And we glory in such a declaration; we show forth his death, and plead it as our accepted sacrifice and ransom. The Lord's supper is not an ordinance to be observed merely for a time, but to be continued. The apostle lays before the Corinthians the danger of receiving it with an unsuitable temper of mind; or keeping up the covenant with sin and death, while professing to renew and confirm the covenant with God. No doubt such incur great guilt, and so render themselves liable to spiritual judgements. But fearful believers should not be discouraged from attending at this holy ordinance. The Holy Spirit never caused this scripture to be written to deter serious Christians from their duty, though the devil has often made this use of it. The apostle was addressing Christians, and warning them to beware of the temporal judgements with which God chastised his offending servants. And in the midst of judgement, God remembers mercy: he many times punishes those whom he loves. It is better to bear trouble in this world, than to be miserable for ever. The apostle points our the duty of those who come to the Lord's table. Self-examination is necessary to right attendance at this holy ordinance. If we would thoroughly search ourselves, to condemn and set right what we find wrong, we should stop Divine judgements. The apostle closes all with a caution against the irregularities of which the Corinthians were guilty at the Lord's table. Let all look to it, that they do not come together to God's worship, so as to provoke him, and bring down vengeance on themselves.

── Matthew HenryConcise Commentary on 1 Corinthians


1 Corinthians 11

Verse 2

[2] Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.

I praise you — The greater part of you.

Verse 3

[3] But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

I would have you know — He does not seem to have given them any order before concerning this.

The head of every man — Particularly every believer.

Is Christ, and the head of Christ is God — Christ, as he is Mediator, acts in all things subordinately to his Father. But we can no more infer that they are not of the same divine nature, because God is said to be the head of Christ, than that man and woman are not of the same human nature, because the man is said to be the head of the woman.

Verse 4

[4] Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head.

Every man praying or prophesying — Speaking by the immediate power of God.

With his head — And face.

Covered — Either with a veil or with long hair.

Dishonoureth his head — St. Paul seems to mean, As in these eastern nations veiling the head is a badge of subjection, so a man who prays or prophesies with a veil on his head, reflects a dishonour on Christ, whose representative he is.

Verse 5

[5] But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven.

But every woman — Who, under an immediate impulse of the Spirit, (for then only was a woman suffered to speak in the church,) prays or prophesies without a veil on her face, as it were disclaims subjection, and reflects dishonour on man, her head. For it is the same, in effect, as if she cut her hair short, and wore it in the distinguishing form of the men. In those ages, men wore their hair exceeding short, as appears from the ancient statues and pictures.

Verse 6

[6] For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.

Therefore if a woman is not covered — If she will throw off the badge of subjection, let her appear with her hair cut like a man's. But if it be shameful far a woman to appear thus in public, especially in a religious assembly, let her, for the same reason, keep on her veil.

Verse 7

[7] For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.

A man indeed ought not to veil his head, because he is the image of God - In the dominion he bears over the creation, representing the supreme dominion of God, which is his glory. But the woman is only matter of glory to the man, who has a becoming dominion over her. Therefore she ought not to appear, but with her head veiled, as a tacit acknowledgment of it.

Verse 8

[8] For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man.

The man is not — In the first production of nature.

Verse 10

[10] For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.

For this cause also a woman ought to be veiled in the public assemblies, because of the angels - Who attend there, and before whom they should be careful not to do anything indecent or irregular.

Verse 11

[11] Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.

Nevertheless in the Lord Jesus, there is neither male nor female - Neither is excluded; neither is preferred before the other in his kingdom.

Verse 12

[12] For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God.

And as the woman was at first taken out of the man, so also the man is now, in the ordinary course of nature, by the woman; but all things are of God - The man, the woman, and their dependence on each other.

Verse 13

[13] Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered?

Judge of yourselves — For what need of more arguments if so plain a case? Is it decent for a woman to pray to God - The Most High, with that bold and undaunted air which she must have, when, contrary to universal custom, she appears in public with her head uncovered?

Verse 14

[14] Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?

For a man to have long hair, carefully adjusted, is such a mark of effeminacy as is a disgrace to him.

Verse 15

[15] But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering.

Given her — Originally, before the arts of dress were in being.

Verse 16

[16] But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.

We have no such custom here, nor any of the other churches of God - The several churches that were in the apostles' time had different customs in things that were not essential; and that under one and the same apostle, as circumstances, in different places, made it convenient. And in all things merely indifferent the custom of each place was of sufficient weight to determine prudent and peaceable men. Yet even this cannot overrule a scrupulous conscience, which really doubts whether the thing be indifferent or no. But those who are referred to here by the apostle were contentious, not conscientious, persons.

Verse 18

[18] For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.

In the church — In the public assembly.

I hear there are schisms among you; and I partly believe it — That is, I believe it of some of you. It is plain that by schisms is not meant any separation from the church, but uncharitable divisions in it; for the Corinthians continued to be one church; and, notwithstanding all their strife and contention, there was no separation of any one party from the rest, with regard to external communion. And it is in the same sense that the word is used, 1 Corinthians 1:10; 1 Corinthians 12:25; which are the only places in the New Testament, beside this, where church schisms are mentioned. Therefore, the indulging any temper contrary to this tender care of each other is the true scriptural schism. This is, therefore, a quite different thing from that orderly separation from corrupt churches which later ages have stigmatized as schisms; and have made a pretence for the vilest cruelties, oppressions, and murders, that have troubled the Christian world. Both heresies and schisms are here mentioned in very near the same sense; unless by schisms be meant, rather, those inward animosities which occasion heresies; that is, outward divisions or parties: so that whilst one said, "I am of Paul," another, "I am of Apollos," this implied both schism and heresy. So wonderfully have later ages distorted the words heresy and schism from their scriptural meaning. Heresy is not, in all the Bible, taken for "an error in fundamentals," or in anything else; nor schism, for any separation made from the outward communion of others. Therefore, both heresy and schism, in the modern sense of the words, are sins that the scripture knows nothing of; but were invented merely to deprive mankind of the benefit of private judgment, and liberty of conscience.

Verse 19

[19] For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.

There must be heresies — Divisions.

Among you — In the ordinary course of things; and God permits them, that it may appear who among you are, and who are not, upright of heart.

Verse 20

[20] When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's supper.

Therefore — That is, in consequence of those schisms.

It is not eating the Lord's supper — That solemn memorial of his death; but quite another thing.

Verse 21

[21] For in eating every one taketh before other his own supper: and one is hungry, and another is drunken.

For in eating what ye call the Lord's supper, instead of all partaking of one bread, each person brings his own supper, and eats it without staying for the rest. And hereby the poor, who cannot provide for themselves, have nothing; while the rich eat and drink to the full just as the heathens use to do at the feasts on their sacrifices.

Verse 22

[22] What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not What shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise you not.

Have ye not houses to eat and drink your common meals in? or do ye despise the church of God - Of which the poor are both the larger and the better part. Do ye act thus in designed contempt of them?

Verse 23

[23] For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:

I received — By an immediate revelation.

Verse 24

[24] And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.

This is my body, which is broken for you — That is, this broken bread is the sign of my body, which is even now to be pierced and wounded for your iniquities. Take then, and eat of, this bread, in an humble, thankful, obediential remembrance of my dying love; of the extremity of my sufferings on your behalf, of the blessings I have thereby procured for you, and of the obligations to love and duty which I have by all this laid upon you.

Verse 25

[25] After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.

After supper — Therefore ye ought not to confound this with a common meal.

Do this in remembrance of me — The ancient sacrifices were in remembrance of sin: this sacrifice, once offered, is still represented in remembrance of the remission of sins.

Verse 26

[26] For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.

Ye show forth the Lord's death — Ye proclaim, as it were, and openly avow it to God, and to all the world.

Till he come — In glory.

Verse 27

[27] Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.

Whosoever shall eat this bread unworthily — That is, in an unworthy, irreverent manner; without regarding either Him that appointed it, or the design of its appointment. Shall be guilty of profaning that which represents the body and blood of the Lord.

Verse 28

[28] But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.

But let a man examine himself — Whether he know the nature and the design of the institution, and whether it be his own desire and purpose throughly to comply therewith.

Verse 29

[29] For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.

For he that eateth and drinketh so unworthily as those Corinthians did, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself - Temporal judgments of various kinds, 1 Corinthians 11:30. Not distinguishing the sacred tokens of the Lord's body - From his common food.

Verse 30

[30] For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

For this cause — Which they had not observed.

Many sleep — In death.

Verse 31

[31] For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.

If we would judge ourselves — As to our knowledge, and the design with which we approach the Lord's table.

We should not be thus judged — That is, punished by God.

Verse 32

[32] But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.

When we are thus judged, it is with this merciful design, that we may not be finally condemned with the world.

Verse 33

[33] Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another.

The rest — The other circumstances relating to the Lord's supper.

── John WesleyExplanatory Notes on 1 Corinthians


Chapter 11. Head Covering and the Broken Bread

Head Covering: Authority
The Broken Bread: Life

I. Woman Should Wear Head Covering

  1. Signify Her Position
  2. The Arrangement of the Lord
  3. Inward Feelings

II. Meetings that Do Harm

  1. Divisions
  2. Selfish and Indulgent
  3. Despise the Church

III. Partake the Lord's Supper with Right Attitude

  1. In Remembrance of the Lord's Death
  2. Until He Comes
  3. Examine Oneself
── Chih-Hsin ChangAn Outline of The New Testament
Chapter Eleven General Review
1) To ascertain if Paul's instructions concerning the veil were meant
   to be applied today, or if he was simply admonishing them to abide
   by what was a social custom of their day
2) To notice the purpose of the Lord's Supper and the manner in which
   it is to be observed
Having spent three chapters discussing the issue of eating things
sacrificed to idols, Paul now quickly covers two separate matters in
this one chapter.  The first pertains to women praying and prophesying
with heads uncovered (2-16).  In view of what we are able to glean
about the society of Corinth, and from comments made by Paul in this
chapter and elsewhere, I believe that the problem Paul addresses is one
that was occurring out in public and not in the assembly.  Beginning in 
verse 17 and continuing through chapter 14, Paul covers issues 
affecting their assemblies as a church, the first being the manner in 
which they abused the observance of the Lord's Supper (17-34).
      1. Commendation for having kept the apostolic traditions
         delivered to them (2)
      2. A reminder concerning the proper line of authority (3)
      3. Concerning praying and prophesying (4-5a)
         a. Every man who does so with head covered dishonors his head
         b. Every woman who does so with head uncovered dishonors her
            head (man)
      1. A woman praying or prophesying uncovered would make her appear
         as one shorn or shaved (5a)
         a. If a woman is not covered, let her be shorn (6a)
         b. If to be shorn or shaved is shameful, let her be covered
      2. It is proper for a man not to cover his head (7-9)
         a. Man is the image and glory of God, while woman is the glory
            of man (7)
         b. Man did not come from woman, nor was created for woman (8-9)
      3. It is appropriate for a woman to have a symbol of authority on
         her head, because of angels (10)
      4. This is not to say that man is independent of woman (11-12)
         a. Especially in the Lord (11)
         b. For as the woman is from the man, so the man is through the
            woman (12a)
         c. And all things are from God (12b)
      5. Judge this matter for yourselves (13-15)
         a. Is it proper for a woman to pray to God with uncovered 
            head? (13)
         b. Does not even nature teach you? (14-15)
            1) That long hair on a man is a dishonor to him? (14)
            2) That long hair on a woman is a glory to her, and 
               provides a covering? (15)
      6. But if anyone is contentious about this matter... (16)
         a. We have no such custom (i.e., this is not an "apostolic
         b. Nor do the churches of God
      1. He cannot praise them for their conduct in their assemblies
         a. Their coming together is not for the better, but for the
            worse (17)
         b. He has heard of their divisions, of which the only good
            thing that could be said is that it does show who is really
            approved among them (18-19)
      2. Especially in regards to the Lord's Supper (20-22)
         a. Their divisiveness made it impossible to eat properly, and
            led to severe abuses (20-21)
         b. They despised the church and shamed the poor, for which 
            Paul could not praise them (22)
      1. The institution as received by Paul directly from the Lord
      2. Properly observed, it is a proclamation of the Lord's death
      3. Properly observed, it is accompanied by self-examination
         a. Which enables us to observe it without bringing judgment to
            ourselves (27-29)
         b. Otherwise, we will be judged and chastened by the Lord,
            that we might not be condemned with the world (30-32)
      4. Concluding instructions (33-34)
         a. When you come together to eat the Supper, wait for one
            another (33)
         b. If you are hungry, eat at home (34a)
         c. Paul will have more to say when he comes to Corinth (34b)
1) List the main points of this chapter
   - Women Praying And Prophesying With Head Uncovered (2-16)
   - Concerning The Lord's Supper (17-34)
2) For what does Paul commend the church in Corinth? (2)
   - Remembering him and keeping the traditions as he delivered to them
3) What is the proper order of authority? (3)
   - God, Christ, Man, Woman
4) What evidence is there that Paul is discussing praying and
   prophesying out in public, and not in the assembly?
   - His commendation in verse 2 (they were keeping the apostolic
     traditions delivered to them)
   - His question in verse 13 (they would have answered "yes" if they
     were being asked concerning women in a religious assembly in
     Corinth; see The Expositors' Greek Testament)
   - His remarks in verses 17-18 (he at this point begins to address
     abuses in their assemblies)
   - His commandments in 14:34-37 (concerning women in the assembly)
5) What evidence is there that Paul is encouraging them to act in
   harmony with the customs of their day?
   - His comments in verses 5-6 (arguing on the basis of "IF it is
   - His appeal to propriety in verse 13 ("is it proper...?")
   - His conclusion in verse 16 (this is not an "apostolic" or "church"
6) How did Paul feel about eating common meals in the assemblies?
   (22, 34)
   - He did not approve, and strongly condemned those who did
7) What is the purpose of the Lord's Supper? (24-26)
   - A memorial in which we proclaim the Lord's death
8) How should one observe the Lord's Supper? (27-29)
   - In a worthy manner
   - With self-examination
   - Discerning the Lord's body
9) How can we avoid the judgement of God? (31)
   - By judging ourselves
10) What is God's purpose in judging His children? (32)
   - To chasten, that we not be condemned with the world
11) What appears to be an important element in observing the Lord's
    Supper? (33; Acts 20:7)
   - That it be done "together"


--《Executable Outlines


Head Covering and the Broken Bread

Head Covering: Authority

The Broken Bread: Life


I.  Woman Should Wear Head Covering

1.    Signify Her Position

2.    The Arrangement of the Lord

3.    Inward Feelings

II.Meetings that Do Harm

1.    Divisions

2.    Selfish and Indulgent

3.    Despise the Church

III.       Partake the Lord’s Supper with Right Attitude

1.    In Remembrance of the Lord’s Death

2.    Until He Comes

3.    Examine Oneself

-- Chih-Hsin ChangAn Outline of The New Testament