Using a metaphor, the head is the commander. Jesus is the head of the Church, because the Church obeys Him and submits to Him. If a woman commands her husband, she is the head. Matriarchy is women as heads of men. Patriarchy is men as heads. Let us analyze this issue in the Bible, that is, through the history of biblical characters. There is a prophetic text that gives the clear impression that in the beginning the woman was the head. “For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh” (Gen. 2:24). In today’s marriages, the woman leaves her father and mother and gets united to her husband, but the biblical text says the exact opposite.
Eve, for example, was Adam’s head, because she talked with the serpent and ate the forbidden fruit in disregard to Adam. The text says that Eve ate, and gave it to her husband, who ate with her. That is, Eve decided everything (Gen. 3:1-6).
Sarai was also the head of Abraham, because, being barren, she decided that she would have children through her slave Hagar. Abraham accepted her direction (Gen. 16:2-4). Afterwards, Sarai contended with Hagar and demanded that Abraham sent her away, to what Abraham readily heeded (Gen, 16:4-6). Hagar went away, aimlessly, but the Angel of Jehovah met her and advised her to humble herself and return. After 14 years, when Isaac was born, Sarah demanded again that Hagar be driven away. In this occasion Abraham, being afraid of a confrontation with Sarah, asked Jehovah about it. Jehovah said,“Whatever Sarah tells you, listen to her”, that is, Jehovah agreed that Sarah decided about the issue. Abraham meekly submitted to the command of Sarah (Gen. 21:9-12).
Isaac, the son of Abraham, married Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel, Abraham’s nephew (Gen. 24:15). It is unbelievable, but Rebekah was head over Isaac. She determined about the choice of Jacob instead of Esau, the first-born (Gen. 27:6-29).
Judah had three sons: Er, Onan and Shelah. Judah, then, took a wife for Er, his first-born, which was killed by Jehovah, leaving no descendants. Onan, the widow’s brother-in-law, married her in order to give children to his dead brother, as was the will of Jehovah. Onan did not want to give her this child and Jehovah killed him. Judah, afraid to lose his third and youngest son, did not give him as husband to Tamar. She entreated Judah, but he denied her request. Tamar, then, took hold of the situation. She dressed herself as a harlot and sat in the way where Judah was going to pass by. He went in to her and she conceived. When Judah heard that Tamar was pregnant, he decided to burn her alive, but she showed him the seal, the cord and the staff, which she had taken from him as payment. Judah lowered his head recognizing that he was not the head, but Tamar was (Gen. 38:2-26).
Delilah was the head of Samson, the carnal, because she shaved his head, removing from him his supernatural strength, his honor, his dignity and his mission (Judg. 16:15-24). The amazing detail is that there is no Samson if there is not a Delilah as head, for many great Christian leaders have been blinded and imprisoned by a woman.
The great king David did not act as head. A beautiful woman undressed herself before the royal house’s terrace, and this was enough to cause the spiritual Samson of Israel to fall. This clever woman forced David to make her son king of Israel. When David, old in his deathbed, agreed that Adonias, his first-born, assume the kingdom, Bathsheba ran to him demanding that he fulfilled his promise. David, entirely submitted to her, set Salomon as king over Israel. This was done against the law of Jehovah, which determined that the first-born should inherit everything (1King 1:1-31; Deut. 21:15-17). Solomon declared that it was his mother, not his father, who had given him the king’s crown. This is a proof that Bathsheba was the head of David (Cant. 3:11).
Solomon, the wisest of all men, following the example of his father, had one thousand women, better saying, one thousand heads, for his wives made him sin in a shameful way (Neh. 13:26; 1Kings 11:1-9).
By these examples we see that the destiny of peoples and men were in the hands of women who acted as heads.
In the New Testament, Jesus changed everything “Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord, for the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body” (Eph. 5:22-23). Now the woman’s destiny is in the hands of the husband, not the husband’s destiny in the hands of the woman, any more. There in the Old Testament, the man united himself with the woman, and became flesh of the woman (Gen. 2:24). The woman, now, becomes man’s flesh. “So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; for no one ever hated his won flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church, because we are members of His body. For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is great” (Eph. 5:28-32).
This great mystery refers to the head. Paul did a lot of preaching on this. “But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ” (1 Cor.11:3).
Women will always be the heads, in the flesh, with their charm and attractiveness. In the Spirit, men are the head, but in order to be Spirit, they have to crucify their flesh (Gal. 5:24). But the flesh (the woman) battles against the Spirit (the man) that you may not do the things that you wish (Gal. 5:16,17). Nevertheless Paul says, “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus…who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” (Rom. 8:1,4).
By Pastor Olavo Silveira Pereira